New TSR to Introduce Brand New Game System At GaryCon in 2017
Thanks to Chris Hinson of RPGCrate we got a pretty interesting bombshell straight from Frank Mentzer at GameHole Con this year. Frank was the original author of the first D&D “Red Box” as well as many other original D&D products. He’s also on the board of the directors at the “New” TSR, Inc company. TSR, as you know, was the original company to publish all things Dungeons and Dragons until bought out by Wizards of the Coast back in 1997.
During the panel, which Chris was live streaming, he asked Frank about the short-lived Gygax Magazine. Below is a summary of what Frank said.
Back when Wizards of the Coast purchased TSR, they let a lot of trademarks lapse. Jayson Ellis, who had always been a huge fan invested his time in money to researching what it would take to reclaim the old logo and “TSR, inc” name and did so, creating a brand new version of the company. Frank also happens to be on the board of directors for this new company, which is based out of Washington State.
Jayson, along with some of the family members of Gary Gygax, namely his sons from his first marriage, created Gygax magazine, which was essentially a smattering of various ideas and concepts that they all agreed that Gary himself would have enjoyed reading and playing. Gary’s widow, Gail Gygax, had different ideas and threatened legal action. According to Frank, in the end, they felt her demands were too severe in regards to what could and couldn’t be used in regards to the family name and other factors. The sons walked and rather than create a legal precedent for her claims, which they felt were unacceptable and unreasonable, they folded the magazine and moved on to other things.
Some issues are still available on their website.
Now, with all that said – near the end of the panel and as a follow up to the question, Frank let slip that coming in spring of 2017 at GaryCon, the New TSR, Inc will be releasing their own game system to the public. They are also currently discussing a variety of products including mass market board games if there’s enough funding and interest.
Ultimately, Frank reminded the audience that business is business and didn’t want to speak more about the subject, ending the discussion with a “We’ll see what happens.”
Thanks again to Chris for sharing this with the world, and if you haven’t already check out RPGCrate and show your support.
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