Race and Religion in Creative Consciousness

It turns out writing tabletop role-playing games is a thing you can do as an occupation. It is hard to explain to grown-ups at parties, who generally assume that I write either a) entire video games all by myself, b) instruction manuals for board games, or c) actually nothing, and my entire job description is an elaborate façade concealing a life of indolence, crime, and self-hatred.

I also do cultural consulting on RPGs and other creative works. If you want to make sure your work depicts ethnic and religious diversity in an accurate, evocative, and respectful manner, I will help you. Right now I do this for free, although if you can pay me to do it, awesome.

I also run games professionally, mostly ones I haven’t written myself, mostly for children whom I later make fun of on the Internet. If you’re in the greater New York metropolitan area, contact me and I can run games for you and/or your children too. I promise not to make fun of you on the Internet, unless you really want me to.

Things I Have Already Written Which You Can Get

Bubblegumshoe (Gold ENnie Award Winner for Best Family Game 2017) is a game from Evil Hat Productions about teenage detectives. For this game, I wrote “The Wheels of Steal,” a story seed about fire, robbery, and hip hop (not necessarily in that order).

Fiasco is a game about powerful ambition and poor impulse control from Bully Pulpit Games. It runs quickly (often under two hours) and is an ideal introduction to tabletop role-playing games. Fiasco kicks off sessions with tables of setting and story prompts called playsets. I wrote a playset about martial arts frauds called Fist City, inspired by such masterpieces of two-fisted heroism as Enter the Dōjō and Miami Connection. Watch Color Circuit play it here!

7th Sea is a game from John Wick Presents about swashbucklers, pirates, and sorcerers in a fantasy 17th century. I’m writing for all the 2nd Edition releases after the core book except for Secret Societies, including …

  1. Various characters for Heroes & Villains
  2. Aragosta, Jaragua, and the Atabean Trading Company for Pirate Nations (Silver ENnie Award Winner for Best Supplement 2017)
  3. Castille for Nations of Théah, Volume One
  4. Ussura for Nations of Théah, Volume Two
  5. Al-Dīn, Ahurayasna, Persis, a great deal of poetry, and assorted other bits and pieces for the Crescent Empire
  6. The Nahuacan Alliance for The New World
  7. Alahnahquin for The Colonies
  8. The Manden Kurufaba for Lands of Gold and Fire
  9. Development of Iskandar for Cities of Faith
  10. Development for Khitai
  11. Urban Shadows is a game from Magpie Games about urban fantasy politics and action, powered by the Apocalypse Engine. For this game’s setting supplement, Dark Streets, I wrote Borough Guides to the Bronx, Manhattan, and Shàolín. Check them out if you like baseball players who claim to be Yorùbá god-kings, ill-advised bargains with evil subway trains, and psychic landfills. Or, y’know, bagels.

I did cultural consulting on “Black as Pitch at Midnight,” a Call of Cthulhu adventure in Golden Goblin Press‘s Tales of the Caribbean.

Monsterhearts is Avery Alder‘s game about teenage monsters exploring messy relationships and queer sexuality. Ciel Sainte-Marie, Jeeyon Shim, and I wrote the guide to experiencing race and religion in the context of high school horror (pp. 40-43). Monsterhearts might be my favorite role-playing game of all time, and the game for which I’m most proud to have written.

Working On It

Scion is a game from Onyx Path Productions (the artists formerly known as White Wolf) about modern demigods. I’m writing the devá, òrìṣà, and shén pantheons for Scion: Hero. Brie Sheldon interviews me about the game here. My in-progress bibliography for the game is here.

Geist: the Sin-Eaters is another Onyx Path joint about humans attached to ghosts who have necromantic powers. I wrote the archetypes for krewes (groups of Sin-Eaters) in the game’s second edition.

Shinobigami is a Japanese role-playing game about secret modern warring ninja clans, rendered into English by Kotodama Heavy Industries. I’m writing “I’m Afraid of Americans,” an adventure for this game about an American martial artist appropriating shinobi secrets from Japan.

Thousand Arrows is a game from Galileo Games about the Japanese Warring States Period, also powered by the Apocalypse Engine. I’m co-writing this game with Brennan Taylor.

Warrior Princesses in the Realm of Everafter, also from Galileo Games, is a fantasy adventure game about fairytale princesses. In the Tales of the Warrior Princesses supplement, I’m writing “Unite the Clans,” an adventure about the Chinese folkloric hero Huā Mùlán encountering the Chányú of a fearsome horde. I also helped build the characters and develop their unique mechanics.

Katanas and Trenchcoats is a game by Ryan Macklin which is a love letter to the gothic-punk RPGs of the 1990s. It’s hard to explain what I’ve written for this game, so we’ll have to be patient.

AfroFuture is a game about culture heroes from your favorite songs fighting back against the Man across space and time, based on the mythology and æsthetics of Parliament-Funkadelic and Ishmael Reed. For more information about this game, come find me at a convention!