I'll admit that sanitizing D&D was a bit corporate on the part of TSR but I've never thought it was a bad idea. While Gary and his crew were in their late 30's when D&D was first published and by the time TSR was corporate he was well in his 40's.
The games new audience however were kids , some young as 11 who were still buying stuff at Toys R Us and in the toy section at Sears (where I got Star Frontiers) It kind of made sense to refocus the game to that audience and the likely buyers aka "the parents"
Also a fair number kids then actually were sheltered from adult material to a degree. It was possible for a healthy middle school kid to have never seen a graphic murder or any nudity outside national geographic.
Now by the time of 2nd edition, this made a lot less sense with the ubiquitous VCR and later the Internet, the game was up. H
The only umbrage I take was with renaming Devils and Demons, Baatezu and Tanar'ri to placate the parents. The kind of parents that would have noticed or cared that the kids were killing imaginary fiends wouldn't have allowed Dungeons and Dragons in the house anyway.
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