News Digest: All the Segues! Last Unicorn RPG, D&D Job Posting Hints at Future, Movies and TV and Games, Green Ronin Announcement, and more!
  • News Digest: Last Unicorn RPG, D&D Job Posting Hints at Future, Movies and TV and Games, Green Ronin Announcement, and more!


    Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! This week’s column was delayed a day for a variety of reasons, including my mother having surgery (she’s okay), so I want to focus on some good news (and a lot of segues) before we get to the…fourth week in a row where I have to write about something bad. The Last Unicorn is getting a roleplaying game! A new Wizards of the Coast job posting may give hints for D&D’s future! Lots of news about movies, television, and games! And more!



    Playground Adventures will release a roleplaying game based on The Last Unicorn. The classic fantasy novel by Peter S. Beagle was originally published in 1968 and ranked at number five in Locus Magazine’s greatest fantasy novels of all time in 1987, though it may be best known to many by the 1982 Rankin-Bass feature film. Few details have been announced about the game version other than a planned 2018 release, but Playground Adventures has a long track record of creating child-friendly roleplaying games that still have enough depth for adults to enjoy, such as their adventures for the My Little Pony- inspired Pathfinder game Ponyfinder. Also, I would like to apologize to all fans of the Rankin-Bass animated film for getting that song stuck in your head for the next week.


    Wizards of the Coast published a job opening for a game designer for Dungeons & Dragons on the official Hasbro careers page. The actual job requirements are rather low if you’re a designer who has worked in the industry, so if you feel like relocating to Seattle to work on Dungeons & Dragons, I encourage you to apply. However, what’s interesting is specifically what they’re looking to hire someone for. “The positions creates D&D products, such as a book updating a setting to 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons.” The job category is also listed as “WOTC – Marketing, Brand & Community Management”. Finally, the qualifications include statements like “Have you been involved in a community of gamers that was inclusive and welcoming?” So I’ll leave you to speculate in the comments using these puzzle pieces what Living Greyhawk for Adventure League they’re planning for next year. Oops, think I gave my guess away.


    Speaking of Hasbro, they signed a new five-year exclusive deal for both movie and television development with Paramount. This won’t affect either of the two largest Wizards of the Coast properties, as the Dungeons & Dragons film rights are still with Sweetpea Entertainment and their deal with Warner Bros and the Magic: The Gathering film rights are with Fox. Also currently tied up in other deals are the properties Hungry Hungry Hippos (Oasis Films), Tonka (Columbia and Sony Pictures), Play-Doh (Fox), Monopoly (Lionsgate), Candy Land (Columbia), and Furby (The Weinstein Company). The only film based on a Hasbro property that has almost universal acclaim is also tied up with another studio as Fox has the rights to make a film based on Clue.


    Speaking films and gaming, Mondo Tees announced a new board game division, Mondo Games. Following up on their partnership with USAopoly and Project Raygun on The Thing: Infection at Outpost 31, the company best known for its unique and stylized t-shirts, posters, and collectibles for iconic cult and genre movies will be creating licensed board games with the first releases scheduled for 2018. They’ve already announced their first two licenses, Jurassic Park and Fight Club. A third game based on original intellectual property was also announced. Mondo’s contribution to the Kickstarter-funded The Thing board game included a special limited edition version of the game with additional components and alternative artwork, which they will also be selling on their website.


    Speaking of film rights, the Patrick Rothfuss novel series The Kingkiller Chronicles has a home with Showtime. The show will be a prequel to the bestselling novel trilogy focusing on a group of Edema Ruh from “a generation before” the first book in the series, The Name of the Wind. Both the showrunner John Rogers (Leverage, The Librarians, and writer for the Dungeons & Dragons ICW comic series) and the composer Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) will join Rothfuss as executive producers on the show along with industry veterans Robert Lawrence and Jennifer Court. No announcement has been made to casting or what characters will appear. There is also no news at this time about the feature film or video game products, both of which were acquired by Lionsgate last year. And no, there’s no news on Doors of Stone yet, I’m a moderator for Patrick Rothfuss’s Twitch chat and if I have one more person jokingly asking about book 3 I’m going to rip my hair out. Speaking of, disclosure: I’m a moderator for Patrick Rothfuss’s Twitch chatroom.




    Speaking of Patrick Rothfuss, he participated in a live-streamed game of Dungeons & Dragons with DM Chris Perkins to raise money for ExtraLife. The stream also included Ed Greenwood (creator of the Forgotten Realms), Erin Evans (author and former editor for Wizards of the Coast), John Kovalic (artist for Munchkin and artist/writer of the comic Dork Tower), Tom Lommel (in his “Bill Cavalier, The Dungeon Bastard” character), and Gaurav Gulati (streamer and host on Saving Throw as well as his own Twitch channel). The game was made somewhat unique as each character in the game was a Tortle, a humanoid turtle race available for purchase through the DM’s Guild with all sales proceeds going to ExtraLife. Yes, it was Tortles all the way down. The stream is now available on the official Dungeons & Dragons YouTube channel.


    Speaking of ExtraLife, Humble Bundle has the ExtraLife Bundle 2017 for just a short time more. The bundle includes at the $1+ level early enrollment in Pathfinder Online good for 30 days. The Bundle also includes several Pathfinder roleplaying game books with a total of 68 Pathfinder RPG products at the top $15 level, plus the video games Rain World, Leviathan: Warships, Kingsway, Guacamelee, Magesty Gold HD, Majesty 2, and Pac-Man Championship Edition 2. The bundle ends at 12 noon Pacific time on Saturday, November 11. In addition, a big sale is going on in the Humble Store for Games Workshop licensed games, including Total War: Warhammer, Blood Bowl, Talisman, and a total of 45 different games an expansions for as much as 90% off. This sale runs until 10:00 AM Pacific on Monday, November 13.


    Speaking of miniatures, WizKids announced a “new” line of miniature terrain. The WizKids Miniatures: Fantasy Terrain – Painted Pools & Pillars Set 1 will include 24 assembled and pre-painted miniatures including five pillars (one fallen), three small pools, and a large pool with several interchangeable accessories including rock piles, torches, banners, and statues. The set releases in March and will have an MSRP of $39.99. While this is being announced as a new product (even on ICv2’s coverage linked above), some may find the specific sculpts familiar. They appear to be rescaled versions of the previous terrain sets available for Mage Knight 3D Dungeon, whose scale was slightly larger due to the increased size of the “clicky” bases compared to the normal 1” bases of standard miniatures. These terrain sets have been out of print for several years and, due to their pre-painted and fully-assembled nature, have been much sought after by lazy gamers who can’t paint (read: me), frequently fetching prices topping $100 on the secondary market.


    And I’m out of segues and run out of good news to report, so it’s back to more controversy. Green Ronin released an announcement on Wednesday that they were severing their relationship with author CA Suleiman amid new allegations of sexual misconduct, with a further clarification of the statement released on Thursday. Suleiman worked on The Lost Citadel fantasy apocalypse fiction anthology and campaign setting which were Kickstarted previously this year. This statement follows the Horror Writers of America and StokerCon also releasing a statement permanently banning Suleiman from all future events.


    Evil Hat Productions probably needs no introduction to you, but they’re the company behind the Fate systems, The Dresden Files Roleplaying Game, The Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game, and Karthun: Lands of Conflict (the system-generic setting book based on Brian Patterson’s D20Monkey webcomic). So of course, the Evil Hat Patreon focuses on content for Fate, specifically a set of adventures released through the Patreon that work individually but can also be used together to create a campaign. A $4 monthly pledge gets you access to all the adventures released, while the $12 monthly pledge level also gets you access to design notes, early unedited drafts, and more behind-the-scenes information about the production of the product.


    We knew this trend was coming, so here is the third Kickstarter this year I’ve listed for the “kid adventure” genre following the success of Stranger Things. This time, it’s Kids on Bikes RPG from Infectious Play and Jon Gilmour. Two things set this game apart. The first is the line-up of talent, including Scott Woodard, Elisa Teague, Kevin Kulp, Banana Chan, Epidiah Ravachol, Matthew Colville, Jim Zub, Sen-Foong Lim, Amanda Hamon Kunz, and, someone that’s rather familiar to those who follow my work, Ross Watson (who was the host of the Gamer’s Tavern podcast that I co-hosted and produced). The other unique aspect is how they handle the “mascot superpower” character. Every kid adventure movie had one: ET had ET, Monster Squad had Frankenstein, Goonies had Sloth. This game re-creates the fish-out-of-water aspects of those characters combined with their unbalanced abilities by making the character one controlled by all of the players rather than having them as a GM-controlled NPC. The PDF is available for a $10 pledge, while the softcover book is added for $20 and a hardcover edition (which includes all the stretch goal adventures from the designers listed above) is available for $35. This project is fully funded and runs until Tuesday, November 28.

    Now this one is an idea that I’m surprised is new. Dungeon in a Box is a subscription box service sends you a complete adventure in a box every month with everything you need to run it. Each month, you’ll get two unpainted plastic minis, a 24” battle map, a 20-page adventure module, miniature terrain, dungeon tile terrain, and plastic flat stand-up tokens (similar to the kind in the Pathfinder Bestiary Box sets only clear plastic with the art painted on instead of cardboard). Each backer level covers you for different time periods of subscription (shipping is extra) with price breaks for the longer you pre-purchase. You get one month for $21, three months for $60, six months for $114, and the full year (plus a bonus 13th adventure) for $210. I normally don’t list shipping date estimates, but in this case it’s a bit more appropriate to note that the first month’s box comes out in February of 2018. This project is fully-funded and runs until Tuesday, December 5.

    That’s all from me for this week! Find more gaming crowdfunding news at the EN World RPG Kickstarter News website, and don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you even more gaming news content. If you have any news to submit, email us at news@enworldnews.com. You can follow me on Twitter @Abstruse I’ve been…ugh…this week…I tweeted some cute pictures of kitties and puppies though, follow Gamer’s Tavern on YouTube featuring videos on gaming history and Let’s Plays, or you can listen to the archives of the Gamer’s Tavern podcast. Until next time, may all your hits be crits! Note: Links to Amazon, Humble Store, Humble Bundle, and/or DriveThru may contain affiliate links with the proceeds going to the author of this column.
    Comments 18 Comments
    1. Mortellan's Avatar
      Mortellan -
      Concerning the job posting clue, Darryl, you read my mind.
    1. Abstruse's Avatar
      Abstruse -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mortellan View Post
      Concerning the job posting clue, Darryl, you read my mind.
      It seemed the most obvious. Putting it under community management instead of anything creative means it's most likely going to be some organized play. The other clue was that they specifically require someone with knowledge of fantasy gaming and fantasy entertainment. Ravenloft (which they've already touched on anyway) would require horror, Eberron steampunk, Planescape or Spelljammer science fiction, Dark Sun post-apocalyptic...

      It might be Dragonlance, but I can't see them doing it without Hickman and Weis at this point. Weis at least has publicly expressed interest in working on it again, and their fingerprints are so deeply on that setting, not involving them in some way would be a huge misstep. And bringing them on would mean they wouldn't need an additional designer as they've got enough people on staff already. You might say the same about Keith Baker and Eberron too (since he's still writing unofficial/OGL material for the setting on his blog), but I don't think he's nearly as tightly tied in fans' minds with the setting as Hickman and Weis are with Dragonlance.

      Or for all I know, it could be a brand new setting or even a license. Would be cool if they snagged the rights to something like Gentlemen Bastards or Kingkiller or another fiction series. And the same signs that point to Greyhawk could also apply there.
    1. Sqn Cdr Flashheart's Avatar
      Sqn Cdr Flashheart -
      Jeez but when IS the third book out? It seems it is the trend of fantasy authors to drag out their series now-a-days, to the torment of readers! I now won't try any series book until the full set is released, after A Wheel of Time, A Game of Thrones and Kingkiller - amongst many others
    1. Abstruse's Avatar
      Abstruse -
      Quote Originally Posted by Sqn Cdr Flashheart View Post
      Jeez but when IS the third book out? It seems it is the trend of fantasy authors to drag out their series now-a-days, to the torment of readers! I now won't try any series book until the full set is released, after A Wheel of Time, A Game of Thrones and Kingkiller - amongst many others
      Name: 16472149-Frustrated-man-pulling-his-hair-out-Stock-Photo.jpg ► Views: 1663 ► Size: 96.4 KB

      More seriously, it's the third part of a trilogy that has a lot of unanswered questions and overlapping plot threads that have been deeply foreshadowed. There's a lot of Chekov's guns to be fired in this thing, and to do it in an unsatisfying way would make the first two books lessened by it. Not to mention that Rothfuss is known for his poetic writing style. This means they take a while. I've got about ten million words of failed novels and screenplays sitting on my hard drive that proves it's less about writing and more about re-writing.

      Me, I'd rather wait another year or two and get the book he wanted to write than force him to release some half-finished slop thrown together to meet a deadline.

      The main reason it gets frustrating for me is that when people go to his Twitch channel to ask. Which means they probably already know about his Twitter account and/or website. Do you really think that, if there were big Book 3 announcement news, he'd be sharing it in the middle of a game of PUBG? Or would he, you know, post it on social media and on his website and his publisher announcing it with book cover and release date and preorder links and whatnot. Plus there's the implication of many (sometimes not even "implied" as much as "outright stated") that they, as fans, have some demand on how Pat spends his time. That he doesn't "deserve" a day off to play video games to stream to his fans or as fundraising for the charity he runs (which, BTW, Worldbuilders is awesome and does great things to make the world a better place).

      My default response was to ask them why they aren't at their day jobs instead of watching Twitch and order them to go to work immediately, since according to them complete strangers are allowed to demand they stop fooling around and get to work. However, I was asked very politely and indirectly to not do that after becoming a mod
    1. Over the Hill Gamer's Avatar
      Over the Hill Gamer -
      Why does everyone in these kinds of videos think they are comedians? People in my games laugh and make jokes but it's not constant and as seemingly pointless. I think it ruins the mood. Do most people run games with this level of comedy? I think stupid jokes are disruptive. I guess laugh tracks are next.
    1. tmanbeaubien's Avatar
      tmanbeaubien -
      Some of my players make *constant* puns and jokes the whole evening. And yes, they ruin the mood and disrupt the game. And engrumpen the DM. It's very tiring.
    1. Zhern's Avatar
      Zhern -
      "the composer Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamelton)"

      That should be Hamilton.
    1. Abstruse's Avatar
      Abstruse -
      Quote Originally Posted by Over the Hill Gamer View Post
      Why does everyone in these kinds of videos think they are comedians? People in my games laugh and make jokes but it's not constant and as seemingly pointless. I think it ruins the mood. Do most people run games with this level of comedy? I think stupid jokes are disruptive. I guess laugh tracks are next.
      Well, three of them are comedians. Tom Lommel and Gaurav Gulani are actors and hosts with improv comedy training, and John Kovalic...I mean Munchkin and Dork Tower. He's been doing gaming comedy for something like over 20 years now. The other three are novelists. Patrick Rothfuss has been doing the Acquisitions Inc shows for years now, and I figure Ed Greenwood can make or not make jokes as he pleases when playing in Forgotten Realms since he created it, with a similar argument for Erin Evans since she's also written novels set in the Realms and edited for the game for several years.
    1. Zhern's Avatar
      Zhern -
      "Gaurav Gulani"

      Gulati. Reference here.
    1. Abstruse's Avatar
      Abstruse -
      Quote Originally Posted by Zhern View Post
      "Gaurav Gulani"

      Gulati. Reference here.
      I mean...I just asked Gaurav to check about half an hour ago and he said I got it right? I'll have to ask him again when his stream goes live in a bit...

      Edit: And just saw his Twitter and yes, it's wrong. Going to have to mention that in his stream Also, fixing. Thanks!

      Edited Edit: Okay, I see now. I got it right in the column and wrong in my comment. Going to leave that one alone so this comment still makes sense and Gaurav can make fun of me
    1. Zhern's Avatar
      Zhern -
      Glad you noticed it. I wouldn't want to be mistaken for a troll when that wasn't the intent.

      Edit: words are hard.
    1. Abstruse's Avatar
      Abstruse -
      Quote Originally Posted by Zhern View Post
      Glad you noticed it. I wouldn't want to be mistaken for a troll when that wasn't the intent.

      Edit: words are hard.
      I was more confused than anything else. Like...did Gaurav forget how to spell his own name because he just woke up too? Or did he just check to make sure I didn't misspell it the same way that WotC did (which, BTW, is misspelled not just on the lower thirds on the stream but in the video description even though we pointed it out in chat) and missed that I got the end part wrong?

      It didn't help that, when I wrote the draft for that, he still had his SpoopyHalloween Twitter name and his username is DoubleGXG on Twitch and Twitter, which doesn't help with spellchecking. So when I saw him in Tippy22's Twitch chat and asked him to check the spelling to make sure.

      Anyway, this is all Tom's fault somehow...
    1. Elf_flambe's Avatar
      Elf_flambe -
      Happy to hear about The Last Unicorn RPG coming out. Is there any way to confirm that Peter S Beagle will actually profit from this deal? I know there's been wrangling over his works, with (apparently confirmed) diversion of royalties from Mr Beagle by his one-time agent and Mr Beagle's struggle to regain control of his beloved works, especially The Last Unicorn. A very sad story. So I'd be reluctant to support this unless I could be assured royalties were going to the right person.
    1. Abstruse's Avatar
      Abstruse -
      Quote Originally Posted by Elf_flambe View Post
      Happy to hear about The Last Unicorn RPG coming out. Is there any way to confirm that Peter S Beagle will actually profit from this deal? I know there's been wrangling over his works, with (apparently confirmed) diversion of royalties from Mr Beagle by his one-time agent and Mr Beagle's struggle to regain control of his beloved works, especially The Last Unicorn. A very sad story. So I'd be reluctant to support this unless I could be assured royalties were going to the right person.
      Here's a quote from BJ Hensley from Facebook: "TPeter will absolutely be getting his royalties! We wouldn’t have it any other way!"

      On a personal note, it would be monumentally stupid to do anything Last Unicorn related right now and not make sure Beagle personally was involved at some level, even if it's just making sure the licensing checks get to him. Anyone who is remotely a fan of Last Unicorn has probably heard the story, so an independent company (who live and die by fan good faith) would be committing suicide trying to rip him off due to the backlash that would cause.
    1. Polyhedral Columbia's Avatar
      Polyhedral Columbia -
      I added The Last Unicorn to my (possibly the largest, most complete) list of TTRPGs based on worlds from other media.

      https://sites.google.com/site/dndphilmont/ttrpgsettings
    1. Elf_flambe's Avatar
      Elf_flambe -
      Quote Originally Posted by Abstruse View Post
      Here's a quote from BJ Hensley from Facebook: "TPeter will absolutely be getting his royalties! We wouldn’t have it any other way!"

      On a personal note, it would be monumentally stupid to do anything Last Unicorn related right now and not make sure Beagle personally was involved at some level, even if it's just making sure the licensing checks get to him. Anyone who is remotely a fan of Last Unicorn has probably heard the story, so an independent company (who live and die by fan good faith) would be committing suicide trying to rip him off due to the backlash that would cause.
      Very glad to hear this! Definitely going on my wish list, then. Hope to share it with my daughters. I recently picked up a replacement copy of another of his books that I enjoyed years ago, A Fine and Private Place, so Mr Beagle has been floating near the top of my mind the last few weeks...
    1. Over the Hill Gamer's Avatar
      Over the Hill Gamer -
      Quote Originally Posted by Abstruse View Post
      Well, three of them are comedians. Tom Lommel and Gaurav Gulani are actors and hosts with improv comedy training, and John Kovalic...I mean Munchkin and Dork Tower. He's been doing gaming comedy for something like over 20 years now. The other three are novelists. Patrick Rothfuss has been doing the Acquisitions Inc shows for years now, and I figure Ed Greenwood can make or not make jokes as he pleases when playing in Forgotten Realms since he created it, with a similar argument for Erin Evans since she's also written novels set in the Realms and edited for the game for several years.
      How ironic. I thought the comedians were merely civilians who thought they were comedians. I never in a million years would think they were actually comedians. My apologies.
    1. polyhedral man's Avatar
      polyhedral man -
      You mentioned: "here is the third Kickstarter this year I’ve listed for the “kid adventure” genre following the success of Stranger Things". Could I ask which ones were the other two kickstarters?
    Comments Leave Comment