TSR The Full & Glorious History of NuTSR

Because the Saga of TSR3 has been ongoing for a while, with many landmarks, I thought I'd do a quick timeline for those who haven't had the time (or, frankly, inclination) to keep up with the whole palaver. As multiple entities refer to themselves as TSR, I will use the nomenclature (1), (2) etc. to distinguish them. However, all the companies below simply use the term "TSR". The principle...

Because the Saga of TSR3 has been ongoing for a while, with many landmarks, I thought I'd do a quick timeline for those who haven't had the time (or, frankly, inclination) to keep up with the whole palaver.

As multiple entities refer to themselves as TSR, I will use the nomenclature (1), (2) etc. to distinguish them. However, all the companies below simply use the term "TSR".

The principle people involved with this story are Ernie Gygax (one of Gary Gygax's children), Justin LaNasa (a tattooist, weapon designer, and briefly a politician who refers to himself as Sir Justin LaNasa*), Stephen Dinehart (co-creator of Giantlands with James Ward), and -- later -- Michael K. Hovermale, TSR3's PR officer.

Also linked to TSR3 is the Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Much of TSR3’s commercial business appears to be conducted via the museum.

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  • Late June 2021. TSR3 embarks on an astonishing social media campaign where they tell people who don't like Gary Gygax not to play D&D, call a trans person on Twitter 'disgusting', thank the 'woke' because sales are up, insult Luke Gygax, and more. They also block or insult those who question them on Twitter.
  • Late June 2021. Various companies distance themselves from TSR3, including Gen Con, TSR2 (who rebrand themselves Solarian Games), GAMA, and various individuals such as Luke Gygax, Tim Kask, Jeff Dee, and more. TSR3 responds to being banned from Gen Con by claiming that they created the convention.
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  • June 30th 2021. TSR3 blames the widespread pushback it is getting on WotC, accusing it of mounting a coordinated assault on them. In the same tweets they claim that they created the TTRPG business. Ernie Gygax and Stephen Dinehart then deactivate their Twitter accounts. Months later it transpires that this is the date they received a C&D from WotC regarding their use of their IP.
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  • December 11th 2021. The president of the Gygax Memorial fund publicly declares that they were never consulted, and would refuse any donation from TSR3's crowdfunding campaign. TSR3 quietly removes the references to the GMF from the IndieGoGo page.
  • December 29th 2021. TSR3.5 refiles its lawsuit, this time in the correct jurisdiction. LaNasa and TSR ask for a trial by Jury.
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  • January 8th 2020. Wonderfiled[sic]'s Stephen Dinehart threatens to sue Twitter user David Flor for his negative review of Giantlands on the platform.
  • January 10th 2022. TSR3's Justin LaNasa sends TSR alumn Tim Kask a profane message, telling him to "Go suck Lukes/wotc/balls you f*****g coward" and accusing him of having been fired from TSR for stealing.
  • January 11th 2022. Michael K Hovermale claims that the first edition of TSR3's Star Frontiers: New Genesis game was released and has sold out. He says “It was a very small limited run released and sold on the DHSM [Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum] website. It is no longer available, and probably won’t be reprinted.” As yet, nobody has publicly revealed that they bought a copy.
  • January 14th 2022. Michael K. Hovermale resigns as TSR3's Chief Creative Officer and Public Relations Officer after 6 months in the position.
  • March 4th 2022. WotC strikes back with a lawsuit naming TSR, Justin LaNasa personally, and the Dungeon Hobby Shop museum. WotC seeks a judgement that TSR hand over all domains, take down all websites, pay treble damages and costs, hand over all stock and proceeds related to the trademarks, and more. TSR has 21 days to respond.
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  • March 22nd 2022. TSR gets an extension on that WoTC suit. Two waivers of service of summons granted to both Justin LaNasa and the Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum. He now has 60 days from March 4th to serve an answer or motion, or suffer default judgment.
  • March 26th 2022. TSR CON takes place at the same time as Gary Con. TSR claims " lol, actually we asked just about every one of the 800 people stopping by, TSR CON, and about 60% had no idea Gary con was going on, and we tried pushing them to go over and attend."
  • March 28th 2022. TSR3 posts images of 'rebound' copies of AD&D 1E books it is selling for $650 each.
  • May 17th 2022. Evidence emerges of Nazi connections via TSR3's Dave Johnson. Public Twitter posts include concentrated hateful imagery and messages over a long period of time.
  • May 17th 2022. DriveThruRPG removes all Dave Johnson Games titles from the platform.
  • May 17th 2022. A jury trial date is set for the TSR/WotC lawsuit for October 2023 (few suits like this actually make it to trial in the end).
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  • July 19th 2022. A leaked version of a beta version of TSR's 'Star Frontiers: New Genesis' game emerges on the internet. The content includes racist and white-supremacist propaganda, including character races with ability caps based on ethnicity, and various homophobic and transphobic references. Justin LaNasa immediately threatened to sue blogger Eric Tenkar, who shared the information publicly ('Mario Real' is one of LaNasa's online pseudonyms). Various evidence points towards the document's genuine nature, including an accidentally revealed Google drive belonging to NuTSR.
  • July 22nd 2022. A video shows a Google Drive that appears to be owned by nuTSR, which contains a list of enemies of the company, usually with the word "WOKE" in caps being used as a pejorative.
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(screenshot courtesy of the @nohateingaming Twitter account)

  • August 30th 2022. Wizard Tower Games announces that they have received a subpeona from WotC regarding TSR and Justin LaNasa. Former NuTSR employee Michaal K Hovermale confirms that he has also received a subpeona.
  • September 5th 2022. Justin LaNasa sends out customer data, including addresses and credit card numbers. LaNasa responds by publicly claiming the evidence is photoshopped and slandering those who revealed it as liars.
  • September 8th 2022. WoTC files an injunction to prevent LaNasa or his companies from “publishing, distributing, or otherwise making available Star Frontiers New Genesis or any iteration of the game using the Marks”.
  • June 8th 2023. NuTSR files for bankruptcy. The case between WotC and NuTSR is postponed until March 2024.

Have I missed anything important? I'll continue updating this as I remember things, or as people remind me of things!

To the best of my knowledge, TSR3 is not actually selling any type of gaming product.

*if anybody has any link to LaNasa's knighthood, please let me know!

Websites
Various websites have come and gone. I'll try to make some sense of it here so you know what site you're actually visiting!
  • TSR.com is the original TSR website. For a long time it redirected to WotC. The URL is no longer in use. (WotC)
  • TSRgames.com was TSR2 until summer 2021. The site is still running, although TSR2 is now called Solarian Games. (Jayson Elliot)
  • TSR.games was TSR3 until summer 2021. It now goes to Wonderfiled(sic)'s website. (Stephen Dinehart)
  • TSR-hobbies.com is TSR 3.5, launched summer 2021 by Justin LaNasa and Ernie Gygax. (Justin LaNasa)
 

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Meech17

WotC President Runner-Up.
Well, being a Quaker doesn't guarantee one is a saint. Nixon was a Quaker.
Also, going to a Quaker college doesn't guarantee one is a Quaker.

My little brother goes to a Quaker College. He chose it because
  1. They offer the program he wanted to study
  2. It was in his budget
  3. He was scouted by their football program, and it's a small D3 school, so he knew he'd actually have the chance to play, rather than trying to walk on, and spend four years riding the bench at some bigger state school.
Our family isn't Quaker.. And while his mom is Baptist.. He's not overly religious himself. 🤷‍♂️
 


Gradine

The Elephant in the Room (she/her)
And if we are not going to be better than that, well, then we aren't better than him, morally or ethically.
Again, I point to the recent history (at least in the US) of the phrase "They go low, we go high" and how well that attitude worked out.

There is a definite appeal to the idea of "If we're not going to do it the right way it's not worth doing at all", which is completely understandable, and it's also why our world is going to hell in a hand basket.

The stakes here being "turnabout on infamous jerkhole Justin Lanasa" that level of compromising oneself probably isn't worth it, but I believe at a certain point making things materially better is more important than moral purity.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Yeah, as I said Justin is oddly loud about his membership and status in his Lodge. I can't find anything else about his Lodge, so I can't say if it is an usual Lodge itself or if its just Justin acting in an odd manner. The way he posts about it seems to imply he's one of the rare Freemasons who wants to advertise it in hopes it will improve his image.

Not all Quakers are "Christian", they have groups of them who are deists but they are generally understood to be quirky but respectable Christians by wider community. Justin's campaign material has said he supports traditional Christian values etc. So there's a bunch of reasons why he'd be comfortable sending his daughter to a private Quaker school.
"Freemasonry, the teachings and practices of the fraternal (men-only) order of Free and Accepted Masons, the largest worldwide secret society—an oath-bound society, often devoted to fellowship, moral discipline, and mutual assistance, that conceals at least some of its rituals, customs, or activities from the public (secret societies do not necessarily conceal their membership or existence)."

He probably thinks it's cool to be a party of a "secret" society, but apparently has lost track of what they stand for.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
Again, I point to the recent history (at least in the US) of the phrase "They go low, we go high" and how well that attitude worked out.

Without going into politics...

Because, "Race to the bottom," would be so much better? Because the types or people and processes you'd have to deploy to fight such problem people on their own terms would somehow not create the same issues when you used them?

We are gamers. We should know the Nietzsche quote: "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster..."

This isn't about "purity". It is about being able to call yourself a good person at the end of the day.
 
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Wizard Tower Games

Publisher of cool games
There is a reality here some here are not seeming to address or accept. Lanasa has not just said "bad things". He has sued people costing them a lot of money and hardship. He has tried destroying kickstarters, he has tried destroying game conventions. He has sent feces to people in the mail. He has created a game with cards mocking people. He has attacked those in the gay and trans communities. He works with an open N*zi. His minions, and note I am not accusing him directly.... Has sent me autopsy imagery, my wife has been attacked at work. They (not not accusing Justin)... have created horrible social media accounts mocking my dead daughter, @Jedion357 daughter who is disabled. These accounts have attacked my wife, @tenkar's wife, Tom's wife.

I will add there is a lot more I cannot talk about as there are investigations in process about those incidents.

So no, this is not bad words. These are the direct, planned actions of a person who does not operate or think like normal people.

I will end with this, people should stop all discussion over anything relating to his daughter, school talk, everything. She is a darling little girl who is an innocent in this. She cannot choose her parents, and she deserves NO internet footprint over this.

Mod edit:


Daughter’s name redacted
 
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Faolyn

(she/her)
Justin is (oddly) very loudly a Mason, and they don't tend to make Masonic private schools - so it wouldn't be unusual for him to have picked another slightly non-mainstream but very Christian school with prestige and tradition for his daughter.
Maybe he bought into the myths and conspiracy theories about Masons and is hoping that he'll eventually get Ultimate Power through them.


Out of curiosity, is it normal for lawyers to throw phrases like "As the philosopher said..." and "alas, he did not" into their... whatever type of document this is? I have no idea how to write a legal document like this (or, uh, of any sort), but these lines seem far less formal than I would have imagined.
 

Gradine

The Elephant in the Room (she/her)
Without going into politics...

Because, "Race to the bottom," would be so much better? Because the types or people and processes you'd have to deploy to fight such problem people on their own terms would somehow not create the same issues when you used them?

We are gamers. We should know the Nietzsche quote: "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster..."

This isn't about "purity". It is about being able to call yourself a good person at the end of the day.
Not to delve too deeply into the politics, but I've seen what "being able to call yourself a good person at the end of the day" has done to our country and our world and I gotta say, I'm not a fan. I'm not saying race to the bottom, because that's not a race we'll ever win, just to keep our minds open to more effective and impactful alternatives.

But this is veering quite far out of topic, so I'll clear off the soapbox.
 

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