Bryan Ansell, considered the grandfather of Warhammer, has passed away at the age of 68. Ansell played a significant role in transforming Games Workshop from a hobby game retailer to a miniature wargame manufacturer, with Warhammer becoming a central focus. Ansell co-founded Asgard Miniatures in 1976, which caught the attention of Games Workshop founders. In collaboration, Citadel Miniatures was established in 1978, becoming a profitable part of Games Workshop. Ansell’s leadership saw a shift towards the production and sale of miniatures, and Warhammer Fantasy Battle, co-authored by Ansell, played a crucial role in this transformation. Ansell bought out Games Workshop founders in 1985 and remained involved in the wargames industry. He started Wargames Foundry in 1983, a separate miniature manufacturer. Ansell stayed connected with the ‘Oldhammer’ community until his passing.

Jennell Jaquays, a significant figure in the development of Dungeons & Dragons and the tabletop roleplaying game industry, has passed away at the age of 68. Known for her contributions to games like Dark Tower and Caverns of Thracia, she worked as a game designer and artist, creating RPG covers, including Dragon Mountain. Jaquays was associated with TSR, Judges Guild, Chaosium, and various video game companies, contributing to titles like Quake and Age of Empires. Beyond her professional achievements, she was an activist for trans rights and played a crucial role in legislative changes as the creative director for the Transgender Human Rights Institute. Her recent years were marked by struggles with Guillain-Barré syndrome. The industry mourns the loss of this legendary figure, remembering her impact on both gaming and the advocacy for trans rights.

Mantic Games, developers of Kings of War, will partner with 343 Industries to create a new Halo tabletop miniatures game based on the Halo videogame franchise, set to launch in September 2024. The game will feature 40mm Spartan miniatures and will be suitable for both newcomers and veterans.There will be no crowdfunding campaign as the game is going direct to market.

Wizards of the Coast and AI: Wizards of the Coast (WotC) denies using AI in recent Magic: The Gathering images, emphasizing that the art was created by humans. The denial follows accusations from fans who believed AI was involved in a promotional image. WotC acknowledges the need for better transparency and disclosure regarding AI use in creative processes. Lawsuit Against OpenAI and Microsoft: The New York Times has filed a lawsuit against Microsoft and OpenAI, claiming the unauthorized use of millions of its articles to train large language models. The lawsuit seeks damages in the billions of dollars, alleging systematic and competitive infringement. Wacom and Wizards of the Coast Controversy: Wacom and Wizards of the Coast face criticism for allegedly using AI-generated images in their recent ad campaigns. Artists accuse Wacom of using AI in a dragon illustration, and Wizards of the Coast issued an apology for using AI-generated elements in an ad. The controversies raise concerns about the impact on creative professions and trust in companies within the creative community.

A D&D historian and writer, Ben Riggs, claims that the Golden Age of tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs) is coming to an end. Riggs argues that the peak, brought in by the popularity of Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) in the 2010s, is declining due to the aftermath of the Open Gaming License (OGL) controversy. He suggests that the emergence of new RPG systems, while successful in crowdfunding, is a sign that the industry has peaked rather than grown. Riggs predicts that the upcoming 6th edition of D&D may not match the success of its predecessor, leading to layoffs at Wizards of the Coast. He contends that the diversification of RPG systems will result in a fractured community, making it harder for businesses to thrive. Riggs draws parallels with the 1990s, citing TSR’s downfall due to splitting the fan base among various settings. Criticism of Riggs’ viewpoint comes from D&D Twitter, with some arguing against his D&D-centric perspective and pointing out inaccuracies in his claims. Despite Riggs’ warnings, TTRPG creators seem undeterred, with figures like Matt Colville dismissing the idea of a decline, suggesting that the so-called Golden Age was primarily beneficial for investors and D&D’s owners. Riggs concludes with predictions of a less successful 6th edition, decreased crowdfunding success for TTRPGs, plateauing attendance at gaming conventions, and a less diverse and interesting TTRPG landscape, unless significant changes occur in the industry.

#BryanAnsel #JennellJaquays #mantic #AIart

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