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D&D 5E Apparently Apotheosis Studios Is Rebranding (Updated: their writers are creating another studio)


I just got an unsolicited email from this company now calling itself the Storytellers Forge (so we forget about last year's controversies and back a new project)...

"It’s been a hot minute, but we’ve been busy.

New Studio, New Team… Bad Ass Campaigns.

Thank you for your past support.
I know, I know, I’ve been quiet. My TikToks have died down, social posting has been light, and nary a peep has really been heard from me since we finished principal work on Sirens: Battle of the Bards. However, we’ve been busy.


Since September of 2022, all of us writers, editors, layout designers, artists and more have been building the back end for a new TTRPG studio that focuses on epic campaigns just like The Red Opera. I personally took some time to write The Crow: Prayers of the Past for Evil Genius Games, and then promptly dove into The Black Ballad (you’ll hear a lot more about this soon).

I’m fully aware that not all of you may know me personally. Some of you have met me at conventions and picked up novels. Some of you may have supported my efforts to Kickstart the Red Opera. Some of you, have followed the TTRPG news surrounding Apotheosis Studios in 2022.

Regardless of how you’ve met me, this is our Storytellers Forge Announcement email. We finally have things we can share with you. Going forward, emails from Storytellers Forge will focus on ST Tips, Blogs, Gaming Advice, and sharing badass content we are making. Emails from RickHeinzWrites will focus on new novels in The Seventh Age world (but I only really drop an email there when there is a new book).

I entirely understand if you wish to unsubscribe. However, if you want to help a studio forged from fire and mini-tabletop apocalypses, stick around! Support our Black Ballad Crowdfunding (we are using Backerkit) and it goes live in March.

If you have questions about past projects, feel free to email us at Info@storytellersforge.com

If you are feeling REALLY social: You can Join Our Discord! or even better, support our Black Ballad Crowdfunding so we have a studio!

Click Here for ST Forge Blogs and Storytelling Tips!
Thank you for sticking with us."

EDIT: Apparently they are NOT Apotheosis. Just not initially very clear about their connections to S&J.
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He'll flip ya...Flip ya for real...
How so?

Please explain in pedantic detail using academic terms and framed within the GMS model.


I think that this is Rick Heinz, rather than Satine and Jamison.
So Rick Heinz was a ghost writer for Apotheosis?
The email is very "first person" - so it's unclear what connection there is with the unscrupulous company.
I don't want to support anyone involved with those terrible people.

I think that this is Rick Heinz, rather than Satine and Jamison.

It looks that way from the website. Satine and Jamison aren't listed as part of the company. About Us — Storytellers Forge

Also, from there: After Apotheosis, Introducing Storytellers Forge — Storytellers Forge

"Let’s Address the Obvious

“For as revered as gods are, they are not perfect—far from it. And those who have been on the receiving end of their slights will understand… They will always do what is in their own interest, what will further themselves, and what won’t damage them. They aren’t afraid to expend or abandon others, much like they did to me.” -Nyxia

For as much distance as I would like to put between Storytellers Forge and our work at Apotheosis Studios, it requires at least one post. So, here is that post. The events and calamities that lead to the collapse of one studio and the launch of another over very public events during 2022 are well documented on the internet. A simple keyword search for relevant names and information will uncover an entire slate of TTRPG controversy.

I won’t link them.

Why? Since 2017 I’ve been writing both novels and campaigns. For a full five years, at nearly a full-time breakneck pace, I’ve been working with Nerdist and Geek & Sundry, churning out novels and short stories in The Seventh Age series, and primarily: writing The Red Opera: Last Days of the Warlock and Sirens: Battle of the Bards. The latter two took up three years of my professional writing career easily. Enough time has already been spent creating entire worlds from scratch for entities that tried to siphon the creative essence from freelancers in the pursuit of fame.

For everyone who worked on The Red Opera: Last Days of the Warlock and Sirens: Battle of the Bards, I’m incredibly proud of the talent and craftsmanship that was poured into those massive books. Talent that has decided we won’t quit writing, illustrating, and storytelling. No matter what OGL, studio, or hurdles get in our way. So here is how we are moving forward.


Emphasis mine.

My 2 cents: It's understandable that people who worked in that circle will work again. It's admirable to start a new company. But if you want to separate yourself from that drama, you have to actually separate yourself from that drama. That means dropping the Red Opera references, posthaste. That bit of history belongs on your CV or your "meet the author" page, but not as marketing for your new, unrelated company.

I'll give them a little leeway because I understand starting a new company is hard. But if they keep trying to namedrop like that, they're going to branded as "Apotheosis 2.0" pretty quick, and they'll have no one to blame but themselves.

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