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 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”.

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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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey


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Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
This all started with Ernie's biggoted remarks. Let's never forget that. He is not just enabling justing. He is 100% complicit.
As I remember them, his remarks were more of the "erm, wtf do you mean by that" - as in they could have been offensive, but more "implied" than clearly stated.

It's what followed those remarks that just cemented it in.
 

As I remember them, his remarks were more of the "erm, wtf do you mean by that" - as in they could have been offensive, but more "implied" than clearly stated.

It's what followed those remarks that just cemented it in.

Yeah, its really a long term issue. It's gone from being an incident (which could potentially be explained, excused, and/or apologized for) to a pattern of behavior.
 







Faolyn

(she/her)
Even without them continuing to deliberately flout the order, is there anything about those cards that feels like any version of SF to you? The jack vaguely looks like it could be wearing a power suit of some sort, and the joker is metallic (is that supposed to be a woman?) and thus maybe supposed to be a robot, but the queen and king look like fantasy art to me. And I can't tell what's going on with the aces.
 

Even without them continuing to deliberately flout the order, is there anything about those cards that feels like any version of SF to you? The jack vaguely looks like it could be wearing a power suit of some sort, and the joker is metallic (is that supposed to be a woman?) and thus maybe supposed to be a robot, but the queen and king look like fantasy art to me. And I can't tell what's going on with the aces.
Hexagons mean sci-fi!
 

DLIMedia

David Flor, Darklight Interactive
Even without them continuing to deliberately flout the order, is there anything about those cards that feels like any version of SF to you? The jack vaguely looks like it could be wearing a power suit of some sort, and the joker is metallic (is that supposed to be a woman?) and thus maybe supposed to be a robot, but the queen and king look like fantasy art to me. And I can't tell what's going on with the aces.
It's been pointed out that there are no one-eyed jacks and that the suits are too similar, so they actively made this the most useless deck possible. I'm not sure what the face cards are even supposed to be.

It's worth mentioning that the wording on the request for injunction states they are not to "sell, promote, advertise, market, offer, or distribute" anything SF:NG pending the results on October 28th...

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These cards to not say "New Genesis" anywhere, so they're arguably OK there BUT sticking to just "Star Frontiers" - which is a well documented product - is probably WORSE because it's pretty established that's an existing brand.
 


Faolyn

(she/her)
It's been pointed out that there are no one-eyed jacks and that the suits are too similar, so they actively made this the most useless deck possible. I'm not sure what the face cards are even supposed to be.
Actually, it kinda looks like two of the jacks have eyepatches. So maybe those are one-eyed jacks?

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It's worth mentioning that the wording on the request for injunction states they are not to "sell, promote, advertise, market, offer, or distribute" anything SF:NG pending the results on October 28th...

View attachment 262790

These cards to not say "New Genesis" anywhere, so they're arguably OK there BUT sticking to just "Star Frontiers" - which is a well documented product - is probably WORSE because it's pretty established that's an existing brand.
I'm certain they thought they had found the loophole there. Gods, these people.
 


Steampunkette

Rules Tinkerer and Freelance Writer
Supporter
Actually, it kinda looks like two of the jacks have eyepatches. So maybe those are one-eyed jacks?

View attachment 262793


I'm certain they thought they had found the loophole there. Gods, these people.
Huh... so that image shows how little effort went into the design. There's 2 Jacks and a pair of palette swaps.

The Queens have different heads, but the same body.

And there's 1 King with 3 palette swaps.
 


DLIMedia

David Flor, Darklight Interactive
Justin LaNasa of NuTSR has filed a "personal injury" lawsuit against Erik Tenkar.


(This was originally posted by Ryan Palmer, then echoed on the DHSM page three hours ago)

ETA: In the filing, Justin states that Tenkar caused him so much "emotional distress and mental anguish" that he and his family had to seek therapy.

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