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

jdrakeh

Front Range Warlock
The Giantlands guys, Stephen Dinehart and Wonderfilled, are actively doing that with several art pieces on Opensea.

I'm not aware of LaNasa and NuTSR doing it... I don't think they're tech savvy enough to do that anyway.

I think the key difference is that Dinehart et. al. aren't pretending to be the original TSR. Whoever is running this account is.
 

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That being said, I can totally see in Justin Lanasa's case how he reads about NFT's one night on the internet, and says to himself (rather self-delusionally) "Hey! I'm the owner of TSR Hobbies in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin! I've got tons of original fantasy content from TSR that goes all the way back to the 1970's that I can scan and sell as an NFT! When I acquired that trademark of the letters T, S, and R in 2019, who knew I was sitting on a veritable goldmine of content made by other people which I can sell as NFT's from my own company to make untold millions on?"

Of course, he said it all in Justin Lanasa's broken sense of English and grammar. So it came out as, "I sure am many smart by selling NFT in reality by hosing all my gamer wannabe chodesters who R jealouus of me and my TSR skillz that go all the way back to 1974 so I can make monies and monies and all the haterz can suck it cuz you are all blocked from TSR Con anyway! SUCKKKKKKKK IT!"
You can be better than this. Please try.
 





First thoughts from a quick read through:

  • I'm surprised the lizardman logo wasn't included in the list of infringing marks.
  • They're paying attention to LaNasa's online antics, and that really won't work out for him.
  • It looks like he's going to end up losing the web domains, too. I hadn't really thought about that part yet.
  • The Museum is definitely getting pulled into this. That's bad news for LaNasa.
  • I don't see Ernie being pulled in yet. They have LaNasa tagged as not just CEO, but "sole manager".
 

adamantyr

Adventurer
First thoughts from a quick read through:

  • I'm surprised the lizardman logo wasn't included in the list of infringing marks.
  • They're paying attention to LaNasa's online antics, and that really won't work out for him.
  • It looks like he's going to end up losing the web domains, too. I hadn't really thought about that part yet.
I also note that the counterclaim defendants is not just TSR LLC, but Justin LaNasa and Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum LLC. In other words, his feeble efforts to use an LLC to hide himself from personal consequences is not likely to happen.
 

Emrico

Adventurer
First thoughts from a quick read through:

  • I'm surprised the lizardman logo wasn't included in the list of infringing marks.
  • They're paying attention to LaNasa's online antics, and that really won't work out for him.
  • It looks like he's going to end up losing the web domains, too. I hadn't really thought about that part yet.
  • The Museum is definitely getting pulled into this. That's bad news for LaNasa.
  • I don't see Ernie being pulled in yet. They have LaNasa tagged as not just CEO, but "sole manager".
The pdf mentions the Lizard logo as one of the marks being protected.

NuTSR is so done. That's just a damn shame. 🤣🤣🤣
 





Omand

Hero
I have been following this saga from when it first broke here on the boards. I would say that NuTSR has finally poked the giant enough to get a reaction. It seems that may have been their intent in the first place, but I suspect they are now dealing with much more than they can handle.

I am not a lawyer, but the Wizards brief seems quite comprehensive. There does not seem to be much wiggle room for NuTSR.

Cheers :)
 

Shakeshift

Adventurer
I have been following this saga from when it first broke here on the boards. I would say that NuTSR has finally poked the giant enough to get a reaction. It seems that may have been their intent in the first place, but I suspect they are now dealing with much more than they can handle.

I am not a lawyer, but the Wizards brief seems quite comprehensive. There does not seem to be much wiggle room for NuTSR.

Cheers :)
It couldn't have happened to a MORE DESERVING person than Justin Lanasa. I'm sure he'll start ANOTHER legal fund, but considering that he probably donated to the majority of his own legal fund the last time, the chance of him getting bailed out by the TSR "army" is nil. They're not the type of people that will be loyal when the WotC/Hasbro juggernaut starts rolling towards them, crushing everything in it's path.

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. That's Justin Lanasa's creed. 21 days until he gets crushed.
 



Sacrosanct

Legend
Publisher
Oh man, he is so screwed. WoTC is asking for income records, and pretty much all assets related to TSR logo use. WoTC is not pulling any punches here any longer. They gave LaNasa plenty of opportunities to rectify this. Now, it seems to clear to me at least, that they have to go scorched earth in order to protect themselves from some other yahoo trying this in the future.
 
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Emrico

Adventurer
With WotC demanding the business records, it makes me wonder how quickly TSRCon(job) gets:

A. Cancelled completely

Or

B. Suddenly becomes a "Cash Only" at the door to attend.
 

Sacrosanct

Legend
Publisher
With WotC demanding the business records, it makes me wonder how quickly TSRCon(job) gets:

A. Cancelled completely

Or

B. Suddenly becomes a "Cash Only" at the door to attend.
Well, as of this morning, they are still trying to sell seats. (Yet another logo version, which tells me they don't even have a product to play yet)

I highly suspect SFNG, if it even happens, is just gonna be a playtest and not an actual final product. Just some notes LaNasa threw together.

So what happens if this 21 days goes by and he keeps using the IP?

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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I also note that the counterclaim defendants is not just TSR LLC, but Justin LaNasa and Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum LLC. In other words, his feeble efforts to use an LLC to hide himself from personal consequences is not likely to happen.
That isn't what his name appearing in the document means. When you sue, you name everyone you think is connected and potentially liable because it's easier to drop someone you named but shouldn't have, than to add someone you should have named, but didn't.
 

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