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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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

volanin

Adventurer
Silly question: what's this prefix Nu about? Last week someone posted on the Strixhaven review using the term NuRaveloft. Now this article uses NuTSR. Someone, please enlighten me.
 

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cpt-safety

Villager
I paid passing attention to this over the summer. When I saw this headline, I thought that I'd move on to a more interesting and helpful article. Alas, like driving more slowly past a dead racoon on the highway, I couldn't stop myself from reading this whole thing. Thank you for summing all of this stuff into one place. I hope now to vote for podcasts and read helpful articles.

The one thing that had an affect on me was the Star Frontiers bit. For a while before that, there was some great person out there who had some permission to post PDFs and stuff for Star Frontiers and I was a fan. They were told to stop and had to end their website. I was hoping that there was a new Star Frontiers coming. Oh well. I'll have to settle for Traveller, Coriolis, Alien, and all of the others on my bookshelf.
 

dirtypool

Explorer
Didn't the cover page of the TSR filing in the NC Circuit have a listed date of October? I was under the impression the initial filing was October and that evidence was submitted on the 7th prior to the dismissal on the 9th
 

Is there a date for this, or an announcement? I'm not sure where in the timeline it goes.

From the TSR Discord Channel (C&P with formatting removed):

Michael K.H. — 10/14/2021

Hi Everyone,

We had a very small limited release of Star Frontiers New Genesis that came out last night. Before I was able to post about it, it already sold out.

I will make certain that going forward you hear about it much more in advance.

Apologies
Michael

---

[redacted1] — 10/14/2021
seriously?? oh man! Here I've been eagerly waiting for news and we missed out? Don't get me wrong, not trying to shoot the messenger but wasn't the point of this Discord so that those of us following would be the first to know?
if theres a better source for info, how do I get involved in that one?

---

Michael K.H. — 10/14/2021

This is still the best place and I again apologize that this mistake happened. It was a miscommunication internally that is now corrected.

---

[redacted2] — 10/14/2021

Are you able to share any more detail about what's in it or pics?

---

Michael K.H. — 10/14/2021

I'm able to say, there will be a conversion manual to make it backwards compatible with the original.
Also there are other games that tie in if players wish, a card game and board game in the works.

---

Michael K.H. — 10/14/2021

and that we are working closely with The folks at Star Frontiersman magazine to bring you the latest news, and seek your submissions.

We want to work together with the Star Frontiers community on future revisions and will open playtesting applications up to you first.

---

[redacted3] — 10/14/2021
Great interview on TheEvilDM @Michael K.H.. Any idea when SF NG might be in stock again?

---

Michael K.H. — 10/14/2021

I will make certain those here, and in your Discord, and FB are the first to know before anyone else

---

[redacted3] — 10/15/2021

Just out of curiosity, how big was that "small, limited release" of the game? 1000 units, 100, units, 10 units, 1 unit? And what was the point?

---

Michael K.H. — 10/17/2021

Hi [redacted3], I'm sorry I can't reveal any of that.

---

[redacted2] — 10/18/2021

Where did it go on sale, @Michael K.H. ? The Hobbyshop Museum?

---

Michael K.H. — 10/18/2021
Yes, it was on there only since it was so limited. Future releases should have more ways to purchase.

---

Michael K.H. — 10/18/2021

Thank you, we are hoping the word spreads to clean up any misinformation and so people know a bit more about our motivations.

I am sorry I don't know yet, however I have corrected the glitch and future releases will have proper press release and notice wall ahead of time.
 

darjr

I crit!
I paid passing attention to this over the summer. When I saw this headline, I thought that I'd move on to a more interesting and helpful article. Alas, like driving more slowly past a dead racoon on the highway, I couldn't stop myself from reading this whole thing. Thank you for summing all of this stuff into one place. I hope now to vote for podcasts and read helpful articles.

The one thing that had an affect on me was the Star Frontiers bit. For a while before that, there was some great person out there who had some permission to post PDFs and stuff for Star Frontiers and I was a fan. They were told to stop and had to end their website. I was hoping that there was a new Star Frontiers coming. Oh well. I'll have to settle for Traveller, Coriolis, Alien, and all of the others on my bookshelf.
That person was doing things correctly, working WITH WotC then and now, and is now releasing new 3rd party Starfrontiers content. These clowns at !TSR could have screwed that all up.

See the following for his announcement of new Starfrontiers adventures, one you can get right now.




And see the following about some of his thoughts on !TSR. Spoilers, it ain’t great.
 
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Sacrosanct

Legend
Publisher
Holy!

Does that mean all this wasn’t under an LLC?

View attachment 148298
This whole situation is just crazy. The Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum has a website of TSRMuseum and not DHSM, they just now registered the DHSM as an LLC, but if you buy anything from the Online store, the payment entity is a Port City Kava, an LLC in North Carolina he registered in 2018 that he let expire a year or so ago (but still has a brick and mortar store by the same name that is currently operating)?

Did they file the DHSM as an LLC because they know they'll lose the TSR LLC and this way TSR LLC can show no products and no profits for WotC to take?

I'm not a tax lawyer, so maybe this is all legit. But it seems to me they are assigning profits from one company to another for reasons we can speculate about.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Silly question: what's this prefix Nu about?

It typically denotes something new or modern.

When used in terms of music, it is often with the connotation that the new thing has the form of the old, but lacks the spirit. "nu-metal" for example, sounds like heavy-metal music, but lacks some of the artist's spirit of the original, and may be a pale imitation of the original. I think that applies here as well.
 



Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Silly question: what's this prefix Nu about? Last week someone posted on the Strixhaven review using the term NuRaveloft. Now this article uses NuTSR. Someone, please enlighten me.

What @Deset Gled said, but I'd put it more simply. It means "New" (they are pronounced the same).

Originally used for music, it became entrenched in geek culture as well. The first time I heard it outside of music genres, it was to distinguish the Dr. Who reboot from the older Dr. Who - it was nuWho.

With nuTSR, there is the added benefit that you get (nuTS)R .... nuts = crazy.
 







Jer

Legend
Supporter
This whole situation is just crazy. The Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum has a website of TSRMuseum and not DHSM, they just now registered the DHSM as an LLC, but if you buy anything from the Online store, the payment entity is a Port City Kava, an LLC in North Carolina he registered in 2018 that he let expire a year or so ago (but still has a brick and mortar store by the same name that is currently operating)?
LaNasa seems to collect LLCs the way folks younger than me collect Pokemon cards.

Did they file the DHSM as an LLC because they know they'll lose the TSR LLC and this way TSR LLC can show no products and no profits for WotC to take?

I'm not a tax lawyer, so maybe this is all legit. But it seems to me they are assigning profits from one company to another for reasons we can speculate about.
I'm not a tax lawyer either but I assume that they want to protect some of the assets of the museum from risk and think that by moving them to a different LLC they will succeed in doing that. Whether that works or not is something a lawyer would need to answer.
 


Mannahnin

Scion of Murgen
Holy!

Does that mean all this wasn’t under an LLC?
It appears that it's all under the TSR LLC, given that TSR is the name used in the website URLs, and given the below disclaimer on the DHSM site:

"The products contained on these pages include images, trademarks, artwork and other materials are owned and produced by TSR, LLC and are not produced, endorsed or sponsored by or affiliated in any way with Wizards of the Coast, LLC or Hasbro, Inc. "

The new registration is probably an attempt to cofferdam the extent of the damage to come from the lawsuits.
 

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