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)

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

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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
It’s all about the bailiffs for me
Tangent:

A buddy of mine was just telling me that the was Tele-testifying in a case as an expert witness and it was clear that those who were actually in the courtroom were not 100% accustomed to the motion-detector light system. Every once in a while, his screen would go black, and he’d hear, “DAMN IT! Bailiff!” And then the screen would show the big bailiff triggering the sensor by dancing and jumping behind the attorneys and parties.

I suggested they hire a DJ to play “Dancing In The Dark” at regular intervals.
 

JediSoth

Semi-Professional Author
Epic
And just to round up the weekend, someone (ostensibly Ernie) posted this on FB a few hours ago:



Personally, I would think that making a public declaration that the real estate and its contents the "asset" of a for-profit entity is the exact opposite of the message I want to send to the company suing me for lots of money. But I'm not a lawyer, what do I know.
I'm sure WotC's lawyer's appreciate Ernie's education of what constitutes an asset and how museums work. If only there was some sort of school they could go to in which they can learn these things. HELL, they should pay Ernie a consultant's fee!
 

Shakeshift

Adventurer
Ernie is once again lifting his leg on the Gygax family legacy. If he'd just learn how to be quiet and not embarrass himself any further on social media, he'd be MUCH better off. This thing he's doing where he keeps doubling down on his poorly thought-out strategies is REALLY not working well for him. It's been a disaster for him for over a year now.
 

Shakeshift

Adventurer
More likely, they felt it was time to unleash their mass movement, and realised it was five guys in basements and a troll farm's lunchtime hobby.
After alienating 90+% of their fanbase by insulting, blocking, and marginalizing them, what exactly does Justin Lanasa have left for the "TSR Army?" Like.... 5 fans? Maybe 10?
 

Sir Brennen

Legend
Personally, I would think that making a public declaration that the real estate and its contents the "asset" of a for-profit entity is the exact opposite of the message I want to send to the company suing me for lots of money. But I'm not a lawyer, what do I know.
That’s not what “Ernie” is saying in that post. It’s just explaining the difference between a for-profit and non-profit museum, with the implication that they are running the Dungeon Hobby Shop as the latter. There’s no declaration there.

Of course, addressing the clarification to WotC employees (um, why?) is purely performative, and the real implication is that the WotC’s legal team, in naming DHS in the suit, is somehow too dim to understand the difference.

But the final paragraph “we take the money and buy more exhibits. That’s how it works!” Well, that’s what the lawsuit is going to try and verify. Just saying that’s the way you run your business doesn’t make it true.

If you don’t want your finances questioned and investigated, don’t associate yourself with a scam artist like Lasagna. That’s the way it works!
 



Sacrosanct

Legend
Publisher
Also, it was through the museum they were selling trademark violating items.

How concise are LaNasa's records on the museum I wonder? He could face more trouble that just WotC if he violated the rules for non profit designation.
I'm betting not at all. Why? Because...

If you go to TSR-Hobbies website and try to buy anything, it brings you to the Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum. And if you buy anything online from the DHSM, the business of record you're sending money to is actually Port City Kava (an LLC that was registered to him but has expired. It's also a physical store in his hometown still operating despite that expired registration).

So yeah, I'm betting his records are all over the place.
 

Shakeshift

Adventurer
Also, they were VERY clear for a long time that the DHSM was a "for profit" business. Mainly when they caught flack because anyone donating to the museum couldn't actually write it off on their taxes.

Trying to turn gears and claim that they were always a non-profit (and thus can keep the museum) is a little deceptive. I somehow doubt they have the non-profit tax ID number to claim that they're tax sheltered.
 

J.Quondam

CR 1/8
Also, they were VERY clear for a long time that the DHSM was a "for profit" business. Mainly when they caught flack because anyone donating to the museum couldn't actually write it off on their taxes.

Trying to turn gears and claim that they were always a non-profit (and thus can keep the museum) is a little deceptive. I somehow doubt they have the non-profit tax ID number to claim that they're tax sheltered.
Yeah, i could have sworn they explicitly said the museum was for-profit. But poring over wayback machine, I haven't been able to find that stated anywhere. So i'm not sure where I heard that?
 

darjr

I crit!
Here's a story that has a bit at the end about rezoning the area to a general business district.


Members of the city council unanimously approved to rezone the Williams Street property from general business district to central business district, June 28, to allow the museum to be established.
The plan commission unanimously recommended the rezoning June 21.
The city council also unanimously approved to allow a commercial apartment to be established on the second floor the building. The apartment is set to be used by the curator for the museum.
 

Shakeshift

Adventurer
Here's a story that has a bit at the end about rezoning the area to a general business district.


Members of the city council unanimously approved to rezone the Williams Street property from general business district to central business district, June 28, to allow the museum to be established.
The plan commission unanimously recommended the rezoning June 21.
The city council also unanimously approved to allow a commercial apartment to be established on the second floor the building. The apartment is set to be used by the curator for the museum.
I was also spending some time looking for that quote about the DHSM being strictly FOR profit because of concerns about donations and surprise surprise Justin Lanasa has now deleted all of the posts on Twitter and Facebook relating to that statement.

My guess is that he's gonna claim the Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum is a charity now, and is worthy of escaping the hangman's noose.
 

darjr

I crit!
I was also spending some time looking for that quote about the DHSM being strictly FOR profit because of concerns about donations and surprise surprise Justin Lanasa has now deleted all of the posts on Twitter and Facebook relating to that statement.

My guess is that he's gonna claim the Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum is a charity now, and is worthy of escaping the hangman's noose.
I suspected as much.

I wonder if anyone has a screen cap of his quote?

Also might be a good idea to hang onto any y’all might have.
 

Where was that posted? I can't seem to find it, but I admit my visibility is limited because I've been banned from pretty much everywhere.

It's on the DHSM's Facebook page: Dungeon Hobby Shop Museum

Yeah, i could have sworn they explicitly said the museum was for-profit. But poring over wayback machine, I haven't been able to find that stated anywhere. So i'm not sure where I heard that?

LaNasa talks about the DHSM being a for-profit museum at around 15:15 in this interview:
Note that this is the same interview I posted about in another thread: Justin LaNasa shares his opinion of EN World

FWIW, I don't think that Ernie was trying to say that the Museum was a non-profit. I think he just has some idea that even though it's for-profit, it's still exists for the good of community, and he's just doing a really bad job of explaining how the museum is run. But none of that really matters from a legal standpoint. Also, keep in mind that this is a "clarification" from someone who didn't realize that income you got from Kickstarter was taxable.
 


darjr

I crit!
Ooof! Just looked at Chad and Mario going at it on Twitter. Well if they manage to keep the poo flinging to themselves from now on I think that’s better.
 


Yaarel

Mind Mage
I honestly wish Earnie no harm. But he harms others, and that makes this situation so difficult.

LaNasa might just be a psychopath.

But the sense I get from Earnie is, he thinks he is being righteous by harming people, and that is the worst kind of problem.
 

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