"Many people over the years have commented on the unique look of the Ogre.  I had nothing to do with that, except to say "Neat!" when the original drawings came in.  The man who set, for all time, the appearance of the Ogre is Winchell Chung.  In 1976, Winch was a gamer and fan-artist who had contributed some drawings to The Space Gamer.  Metagaming asked him to create a cover for OGRE, and I sent him a smeary, impressionistic red-and-black sketch of a battle scene.  But my tank was just a big tank.  Winch added the tower and the bulging front turrets, and tied it all together into the menacing and memorable whole."  -Steve Jackson


Artist and gamer

Here is Winchell Chung's original artwork as graced the cover of the first edition series of OGRE, by Metagaming Concepts circa mid-1976.  It's not often that someone in high school does a piece of artwork that will live on in the hearts of many, many people for decades to come.


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For $2.95, it was a bargain!

Good science fiction mixed with good tactical game play.  What more could you ask for?


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Here is Winchell Chung's drawing for a Paneuropean light tank (note the sensor dish and retractable OGRE-esque sensor tower on the side), a Paneuropean heavy tank, and a Mark III Ogre for size comparisons.  Just for curiosity's sake, this same picture is shown in THE OGRE BOOK, 2nd Edition, page 34, minus the OGRE!  The caption also mistakenly quotes that the art is done by Graham Chaffee which is also incorrect.  If you doubt that Winchell did this, look under the track of the OGRE, you will see the signature "WINCH CHUNG '78".  Credit where credit is due.

A Paneuropean tanker is given also for size reference to the armored vehicles.  It almost looks like the light tank could skate under the OGRE and strike from there.  The stylized Corinthian / Greek helmet logo for the Paneuropean forces was also Winchell's design and idea (as was the stylized hourglass symbol for the Combine forces...).   Winchell is a talented artist, with a very identifiable 'style' that I found not only unique, but refreshing.  I always looked forward to seeing his 'next' illustration.  This image above is signed by "Winch Chung '78" (below the port side track on the OGRE, upper right side of the illustration...).  I found the name "GRENDEL" on the OGRE's upper right frontal glacis to be somewhat humorous given mythology.  It is also curious that the name "GRENDEL" (as in GRENDEL 1) plays a role in the story of how OGREs became aware and gained sentience but you'll have to look that bit of trivia up on your own...

For what it is worth, Winchell Chung is considered to be the 'father' of the OGRE's likeness and image; it is his endearing and timeless design of the massive hulking cybertanks that fans of the OGRE and GEV games have come to recognize and admire.  Thank you, Winchell, for all your visions and artwork, thank you for letting us see what you saw and for putting into pictures the story the defined the OGRE and GEV games.  I know I spent many hours trying my own hand at art, drawing streamlined military vehicles of the 21st century in the late '70's and early '80's, inspired at Winchell's vision of the future of warfare and working on my techniques.

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Here is a rather introspective picture of a cardboard OGRE playing piece ("chit") casting a shadow on the wall where no shadow should be possible.  Once again, this art represents the fact that you got much more for your money than you could have ever of expected with a game the size of OGRE.  Part of the magic of the game was the simplicity of the rules, but a lot of the power behind the game was the story, the universe that Steve Jackson imagined and Winchell Chung showed us in his drawings.

Again, Winchell Chung's mind spinning gears, showing us a view we wouldn't have thought of on our own.


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The final vision / version of the Mark V OGRE, as conceived and rendered by Winchell Chung in the mid-1970's.  Easily recognized by the characteristic OGRE sensor 'tower', the two huge ball-turreted main batteries, the six missiles in their racks on each side, the six secondary batteries (the 'sticks' on each side), the bristling amount of AP batteries (the small bumps) as well as the four drive sections that link the segmented BPC armored hull (some areas being meters thick in armor protection).

If you get the chance, be sure to visit Winch's site for more info on his early OGRE drawings and how he was inspired to create the images that we take as canon todayBesides being an incredibly talented artist, Winch is an intellectual with a variety of interests and hobbies.  Many of his original sketches and drawings ("doodlings") can be found in THE OGRE BOOK, 2nd Edition.

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Winchell Chung's homepage can be found by following this link.  If you look around, you should be able to find a picture of a Mark VI Ogre with its characteristic three main batteries.  While you are there, drop Winch an email if you're a fan of his art then please be sure to give him a "thank you" for his talented work.  I'm sure he'd be appreciative of any praise and compliments, especially from new fans of the game who may just today be discovering for the first time what so many of us have known for decades now.  It's not often that something done so long ago has withstood the test of time like Winchell's artwork has done. 

Nearly three decades now and still counting... that's a story worth telling in and of itself.