the Fairgame Archive

2006-02-05: Initials and Handshake
by Emily

Hi there,

I've been meaning to do this, but I finally couldn't figure out who somebody was in marginalia one too many times, so I'm inspired to get around to it now:

Welcome to Fair Game!  What's your name and what initials do you use for marginalia comments? Anything else you might like to share?

2006-02-05 01:14:49 Emily

I'm Emily Care Boss and I use ecb in marginalia. I wrote up way too much about me here.

The only thing I guess I should add to that is that I design role playing games and have published one so far: Breaking the Ice, and have several more on the way.

2006-02-05 03:32:38 Chris

I'm Chris, surprisingly, I use Chris in the marginalia.  Why?  Um, I guess because 5 letters isn't terribly long and the system will let me do it.

I'm such a rebel. :P

2006-02-05 03:31:35 Brand Robins

I'm Bradley "Brand" Robins and I use BR in the marginalia. I'm married to Moyra Turkington, who uses MT and will probably be along soon to say more about her wonderful self.

I am an ex-pat American in the process of becoming a Canadian, I used to teach 3rd grade and now write RPGs freelance, and I spend much to much time talking about RPG theory. I have not just one RPG blog but two.

It's a sickness.

2006-02-05 04:18:43 Clinton R. Nixon

I'm Clinton R. Nixon, and I use "CRN" in marginalia. I do all sorts of stuff, but mainly I like playing my ukulele more than anything else. I write role-playing games like The Shadow of Yesterday and helped start The Forge (and still run it today.)

Oh, and I'm here because Emily and Meg are two of the the most incredibly nice and smart people I know.

2006-02-05 07:34:24 Metal Fatigue

I'm Seth Blumberg, and I use "SLB" in marginalia (though I may switch to "Metal" now that I know it'll accommodate five characters). I play games, I eat my lunch, I go to the lavatory.

2006-02-05 10:08:24 John Harper

I'm John Harper. I use JSH for marginalia. I make games sometimes and play them a lot. Like all the cool kids, I have a game blog. I do graphic design for a living and I teach Aikido on the side.

I'm here because I met Clinton a few years back and (because he is just about the awesomest person ever) I looked into his Forge thingy and so found all these other amazing folks, like Emily and Meg.

2006-02-05 11:15:29 Judd

I'm here because Emily and Meg rock.

I was putting JK in the marginalia but then there is a mix-up between me and John Kim.


What if I'm J*K?

That'll work.

2006-02-05 12:53:45 Ben Lehman

Judd—you could be Judd.

I'm Ben Lehman—BL in the comments.

That's my deal.



2006-02-05 13:14:31 Matthijs

Hi, I'm Matthijs, MH in marginalia. I'm the guy nobody's met because he lives a zillion miles away. I like to read Meg and Emily's stuff, and will hopefully be trying BtI this weekend.

2006-02-05 16:20:56 Mark W

Hi. I'm Mark Woodhouse, known as Tigerbunny in a few other places. Long-time theorysphere lurker, more recent participant. I'm here because Meg & Emily keep talking about one of my pet interests - the ethics and social psychology of rpgs. I go by WMW in Marginalia.

2006-02-05 19:39:22 Meguey

I'm Meg, MB in marginalia, and I wrote a bunch more about me here. I'm currently being game designer support for Emily and Vincent as they wrestle with their work, and I'm in denial that I actually started writing 1001 Nights last week. I'm also very tickled to have y'all here reading our game stuff. Thanks!

2006-02-05 20:38:40 James

I'm James, and met Meg and Emily (and the rest of the crew) at the forge booth last year.  I probably go by JB in the marginalia, but I can never remember from one time to the next, so usually tag a "-James" on the end of the comment.

I have published Death's Door, am in the crunchy bits of playtesting and publishing Blood and Bronze, and Reality Cops is currently writing me.


2006-02-05 20:51:15 xenopulse


I'm Christian, a German who moved to the States 6 years ago. I live near Portland, OR, with my wonderful wife Lisa and our three kids Derek, Michael and Aidan. I work as a paralegal and am currently trying to get my first novel sold.

I use XP as initials, mainly because "xenopulse" used to be my online handle back when I was writing and sharing songs in the "Tracker Scene" (trackers are certain free music programs). If you have the software to play FastTracker2 files, you can still find some of them out there in the vast reaches of the internet.

I haven't published my own RPG yet, though I am working on Beast Hunters and will get that done this year. Actually, Meg's article on rituals had an influence on a part of that design, so I already owe you guys :)

- Christian

2006-02-05 21:59:50 Ninja Monkey J

I'm Joshua A.C. Newman, and I'm NinJ in the marginalia (for kooky reasons that go back a couple of years on Anyway). I wrote Under the Bed and Shock: Social Science Fiction and will soon start on something else. I live a few miles from Meg and Emily, which makes me very happy.

I'm here primarily to push Meg to work more on 1001 Nights.

2006-02-05 23:09:38 ffilz

Frank S Filz (initials fsf in the marginalia). I've been using ffilz as an ID for ever (it's rather cool to have an almost unique last name so I almost always can get ffilz as an ID).

I'm here because of the Forgeish blogosphere.


2006-02-05 23:40:40 Joshua BishopRoby

Hey yo.  Josh BishopRoby here, JBR in marginalia.  I blog at Ludanta Retero and bitch about marketing at the Forge all the live-long day.  My current game design, Full Light, Full Steam, is in playtest and I expect to release it in some form this year.  Also, Meg and Emily kick ass.

2006-02-06 00:23:33 Troy_Costisick


My name is Troy Costisick (koss-ti-sik).  I'm published a Fantasy Heartbreaker named Ember Twilight.  I'm currently helping newbie designers at Socratic Design am working on producing my Ronny games: Cutthroat, Hierarchy, and Standoff!  In marginalia I use the initials "TC" and sometimes "TMC" when I'm not thinking about what I'm doing :-)



2006-02-06 00:38:20 Albert A


I'm Albert Andersen, long-time player. I've been around the Forge for almost two years now, designed and run a few one-shot Larps for the Stanford Gaming Society, but don't have any full games under my belt yet. I think I've used the marginalia over at Anyway at least once or twice, and would either go by AA or AWA.

2006-02-06 03:29:11 SDL

i'm a total novice.

i'm stefan dirk lahr, my forge profile is here, i think.

i found this whole indie thinger a year ago; Before that i never imagined you could publish an RPG and not have it be a "fantasy heartbreaker".

i play and write little tabletop wargames as well, but i haven't published anything ever.

i also tend to jump in and post too early, too often, or not at all. i love this whole marginalia thing.

2006-02-06 09:24:51 John Kim

Hello, I'm John Kim—here from Anyway and The Forge.  I'll use JHK to distinguish myself from Judd's "J*K".  Er, and I talk a lot about games, but haven't commercially published anything except a few accidental writing credits.

2006-02-06 10:26:59 Gregor Hutton

Hi, I'm Gregor and I use GH in Marginalia.

I'm in Edinburgh in Scotland, and I met up with Emily and Meg at GenCon, Indy last year. (Along with all their hangers-on, like Vincent and Joshua :-P )

I'm currently in the process of publishing two games I created for the Ronnies (Best Friends and 3:16), as well as working on Contested Ground stuff with Malc, Paul, John, Iain & Cat. My first published game was in 1995 and it was called Frenzy.

Err, that's it.

2006-02-06 14:24:33 Tris


I'm Tristan Brightman, I use "TB" in the marginalia.  I came here via anyway, which I got to through an interest in game design prompted by discovering the forge.  This was all fairly recent.

My day job is in Transport Research, but at night my alter ego does cool stuff, including hockey (without ice) saxophone (without band :( ) and game design (with publishing, in the somewhat near future.)

I can't say how nice anyone is, barely knowing them and all, but quite a lot of people seem mighty clever :-D


2006-02-06 16:03:24 Lisa Padol

I'm Lisa Padol, and I use LP.

I collage. I don't design original games, but I borrow bits as needed. I'm an end user.

Oh, and a reviewer.

And I write larps, but that's Completely Different. I let the other folks on the team do the system design and say, "Ooh, too complicated. You're giving me a headache."


2006-02-06 16:24:55 Joshua Kronengold

I'm Joshua Kronengold, and I've usually used JK.

I may switch to mneme if the margins will take 5 characters, since that's more unique and my usual handle.

I tend to be the mechanics guy on the Stratjackets LARPs (key: simple and fast, though I'm tempted by more complicated things) and may design a tabletop game at some point; as a player and (occasional) GM, I tend to toggle between heavily immersive nar and story-oriented, very low mechanics sim.

Oh, and I'm also Lisa Padol's domestic (ated?) partner.

2006-02-06 16:42:59 ScottM

I'm Scott, a Vincent stalker of a few years who decided to see what the rest of the "Adventures in Improvised..." group is up to.  In marginalia, I'm usually SDM, though I've been Scott a time or two.

I'm not currently interested in designing a game, though I'm interested in theory and application—making the games I play better.

2006-02-06 17:27:46 Michael S. Miller

I'm Michael S. Miller and I use MSM in the Marginalia. I've designed games like With Great Power... and Discernment (part of the No Press RPG Anthology). I met Meg & Emily for the first time at GenCon '05 and hang around here for the same reason I stalk the rest of the RPG theory blogosphere: To find cool new ideas about RPGs and assimilate them into my own games. 8^)

I do much of my gaming with my wife Kat Miller, who makes it possible for me to design games at all.

2006-02-06 18:34:48 Jonas Karlsson

I'm Jonas Karlsson, and I go by... well, just guess! I've started using JonasK; the K is there because there's another Swede called Jonas with a role-playing blog, a friend of mine, and I want to avoid confusion. I have a blog called Jonas dagar, which means "The days of Jonas" in Swedish. It's supposed to be a lower-case 'd', but people seem to think it's my last name or something and capitalize it.

Right now I'm doing my Master's Thesis, modeling a flexible processor core which will reconfigure its own hardware during runtime to adapt to different software needs. I'll probably keep doing it through spring and summer. It's fun and it feels like it's on some kind of cutting edge, so I'm enjoying myself.

I'm the producer of a bi-weekly PTA show called The Return, with the 4th episode of 5 coming up next week. I'm also a player in a newly started bi-weekly Sorcerer campaign, Day of Dupes, with Peter Nordstrand. I'm preparing stuff for an Easter weekend Swedish game convention called GothCon, I think it's the largest in Sweden, namely an Indie Room for playing drop-in games and a Dogs in the Vineyard scenario that'll be a scheduled event (three times with, I don't know, 5 or 10 GMs each time).

I have a couple of games that could be turned into real games, but I seem to be lacking that extra obsessive spark right now. One Can Have Her, my noir Ronnies game, and The Play (where you play actors trying to improvise a play during the session) are the ones I would like the most to some day become published.

My most recent RPG project is starting a WikiProject on Wikipedia called WikiProject Role-playing games. I've started short entries on Breaking the Ice and other games (see my user page for the complete list), and you should check out the indie RPG category for more games. I would very much enjoy if anyone feel like helping me expand the Wikipedia coverage of Forge games, as the articles right now are not what they can be. I don't even think you need to register to edit existing articles, but it's more fun if you do because your contributions can be recognized.

This thread is a great idea, as I've had a hard time figuring out who's who when all you've got is two or three letters to guess from.

I apparently had a lot to share.

2006-02-06 21:13:21 Thomas Robertson

I'm clearly Thomas E. Robertson.  I also wander around the internet as "lordsmerf".  I'm in the marginalia as TER.  Remember, the "E" is for "Edgar".

I'm an undergrad studying philosophy, music, sociology, psychology, and economics.  I want to eventually do some graduate work in the semi-private languages of small groups and small group sociology.  That turns out to point pretty squarely at tabletop roleplaying.

I've only been doing my own game designs seriously for the past year or two, and I'm hoping to publish The Suburban Crucible by May of this year.

I hang around here in order to steal ideas (I already stole stuff from Emily's Breaking the Ice), hone my craft (at the moment there are a number of games I want to write that I am just not good enough to write), and to get some insight into what's going on in roleplaying that I wouldn't have picked up on my own.


2006-02-07 12:15:32 droog

My name's Jeff Zahari, and if I ever post a comment in the marginalia I'll be JZ.

I come here and read stuff because I'm a dilettante. I don't feel I've got a lot to contribute, but you can think of me as a supporter of the things you're trying to achieve. Whatever that's worth.

I'm married with one daughter and I live in Melbourne, Australia.

2006-02-07 15:27:11 Council Member Coyote

Hey, my name is Travis. I go wayyyyy back with Vince, Meg, and Ems. More of a lurker here than a poster. My day job is retailing games out of a brick n' mortar in Vincent's families adopted home town. Meg is my adopted big sister and introduced my fiance and I . I deal with game mechanincs and symantics most days, all day, and "Why?" is the best question to ask about any game rule. Why is the rule there, does it achieve what it intends, and is it consistent with the other game mechanincs? That is the same rule I use in one of my other night jobs as a City Councilmember. (Yes gamers and geeks can go far!) I enjoy role playing, D & D is the most "accessible" game and the easiest language we all speak, so that is mostly what we play. It also fills my need for heroic drama. Most days finds me playing Heroclix with customers these days and going on long conversational threads about the intent and affect of new rules and feats that "power creep" but keep the game interseting. I also ramble...

2006-02-07 20:05:37 MattS

Matt Snyder here. I used to use MS, but have been using MattS to make it a bit clearer. I'm always misreading people's initials.

As I have previously stated, Fair Game rocks. In fact, it's now the official Indie RPG Blog Name of the Decade, so says I.

Oh, yeah, I live in Iowa (better than you think! Heh) and publish games, including Dust Devils, Nine Worlds and still more to come.

2006-02-08 10:01:01 Drew_rrr


I'm Drew, some random bloke from England.  None of you lot know me, but hello! anyway.  My usual online tag is rrr so my intials in marginalia are likely to be drew_rrr, on the slim chance that anyone would recognise me as such.

Err, I've designed a couple of first drafty type games, but then I get stuck and don't know where to go, despite some good feedback on the forge on one or two.  Currently I'm playtesting a set of rules for a game I'd love to publish, but who knows.

I'm here to pick up ideas and hopefully learn enough that one day I'll be able to finish one of my games!

I cam here via Anyway, and kept visiting because its interesting. :D


2006-02-08 13:21:36 Victor Gijsbers

I'm Victor Gijsbers (which isn't all that hard to pronounce once you know that the 'g' should be hard as in the Scottish 'loch', and the 'ij' is a vowel that sounds somewhat like the German 'ei') from the Netherlands. The initials I use in the marginalia might be either VG or VAG (with the 'A' of 'Alexander'), but more probably a random alteration of both. I have a blog over at The Gaming Philosopher, and in my spare time between roleplaying I'm writing a PhD-thesis in philosophy.

2006-02-08 15:50:34 Charles S

I'm Charles Seaton. I use CS as my initials in the marginalia, and I'm alephnul on livejournal. I live in Portland, OR. The only actual RP blogging I do tends to be on my group'sgame world site, but I am often found posting in the comments here, Anyway, Brand's blog, and John Kim's LJ.

2006-02-08 19:03:00 Tom

I'm Tom Russell (TLR in the margins).  I'm a lot like the bad guy in Indiana Jones.  I let brave adventurers retrieve great ideas out of the perilous tombs of Gaming Theory and then I steal them to use in my own stuff.

I'm currently working on ReSource, a game about life in a post-oil future.

I play a wide range of RPGs from D&D to Polaris.  Nobilis is probably my favorite game of all.  I almost always play a wiseass.



2006-02-08 21:29:46 Matt Wilson

I marginalize myself as MSW.

I'm back in school finishing a degree after procrastinating for fucking ever.

And I like to do all kinds of creative-type stuff, but there's so little time.

2006-02-09 22:53:43 Mendel Schmiedekamp

Haven't used the margins yet, but I expect when I do I'll go as MDS. Like Brand, I have two RPG blogs: one for my own design and theory and RPG Theory Review, a weekly summary of theory developments in the blogsphere.

At the moment, I'm working on revising my learning based theory of RPGs and trying to choose which of my twenty or so games to edit and polish into publication.

2006-02-10 20:49:34 Jasper Polane

I'm Jasper Polane from the Netherlands, JP in the marginalia. I work in television animation as a director and screen writer.

At the moment I'm working on two games: Cosmic Combat and Reservoir Ducks.

2006-02-11 09:32:32 Harald Wagener

I am Harald Wagener. I run the indie rpg planet, where I try to collect all the nice forge-blog-offshoots. When I am starting to write to Marginalia myself, my name will probably 'oliof' which has been my online handle in various places for about eight years now.

I am not working on a game myself, but I am evangelizing Dogs in the Vineyard in my part of the rpg world.

2006-02-15 21:53:46 Merten

Hi. I'm Jukka and I use the handle Merten pretty much everywhere, including the marginalia. I don't design games, I just write scenarios for live-action roleplaying and tabletop games. A freeformer with no hope of recovery.

Aside from that, I participate in organising a convention, contribute to a gaming magazine and mutter at A moment of clarity.

2006-02-16 02:32:41 anon.

I'm Moyra Turkington, more often referred to as Mo, or more formally "the Mo of Space and Death".

I'm starting to understand that I am a serial hobbyist. I have too many of them for my own good, and only really pay attention to one at a time. That is to say, when I'm in a Design groove I'll be here (or over on Sin Aesthetics), and then I'll meander off and do some sketchwork, or masking, or get graphically styling on something very unrelated and will drop off the face of the earth for a time. This is all part of what it means to be of Space and Death.

I did a bunch of freelance writing for RPG's a number of years ago and gave it up when I realized it was just about as rewarding as my corporate drone job as an Analyst in a major telco (read: not at all). Instead, Brand and I are mucking about in designing a couple of games: 1000 Stories which is getting somewhere, and Asylum which is not because it is on the back burner until 1000 Stories is in some kind of playtestable form.

I've been using MT in the margins, though I'm not entirely sure why. I hereby declare from here on in I'll just be Mo all over, except for those times where I'll post anon, because, I am, how you say, a dork.

2006-02-23 01:02:20 John Laviolette

I'm John Laviolette, and I have been hopelessly behind, so I haven't been posting marginalia here... but on Anyway I use the initials JCL.

People mostly know me (if at all) for my first Iron Game Chef entry, The Court of 9 Chambers. I read more than I post, because if I think about posting at all, I usually wait 24 hours anyways, and by then it often doesn't seem as necessary.

2006-02-27 20:32:18 paulkdad

Paul Kimmel here. I use PK in the Marginalia. I take care of my wife, play with my 4 year-old daughter, draw/paint (can't decide which it is, really), work on various RPG designs, and play chess, in that order. Oh, and I currently live in Iceland.

2006-03-09 15:31:20 Brennan Taylor

I'm Brennan Taylor, I run Indie Press Revolution and publish my own games under the Galileo Games imprint. I'm using BT in the marginalia.

2006-03-10 15:43:36 Peter Nordstrand

I've used PN for *gasp* Peter Nordstrand. Now please go back to sleep.

2006-03-21 14:27:04 Per

Per Fischer, Danish, but in Scottish exile. I use Per as a handle if at all. I came here via Anyway, and I am not leaving.

My first game design to see other eyes than my own is Hubris, submitted to this year's Game Chef.

2006-04-13 12:14:06 Arref

Long time lurker. Arref in the marginalia.

I'm a long-time member of the 'Amber DRPG' community and sometime commentor on all things Zelazny.

I hang here looking to cross-pollinate with a game system that hasn't had published support since the last century.


2006-05-16 07:05:22 Levi Kornelsen

I'm Levi.  LBK or Levi in the margins, should I visit.  I've been lurking here for a bit, reading up.

I work as a landlord, dance at nightclubs, watch movies, play games of all sorts, and write game stuff.

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