Wednesday, June 25, 2014

:: KantCon Superheroes ::

The theme for KantCon 2014 is...

In that vein I was asked to create superhero versions of the mascot characters for use in a role-playing module to be written by Andre Faucher, the mastermind behind Evil Teacher Productions. All the characters from years past join up with the new mascot for this year, Massive Defender.

You can get your PDF of Andre Faucher's exclusive KantCon Module this year at KantCon 2014. Pre-register today at!

Hit the jump to see the Jabbergluck, Help! the Gnome, Fancy the Elf, and Massive Defender in all their comic book glory!

Monday, June 16, 2014

:: Sunflower Marketing Rebrand ::

Sunflower Marketing's look has certainly changed over the years.
While I was working at Sunflower Marketing I seized the opportunity to give the company's look an overhaul. Sunflower's look hadn't changed in many years, and it was showing a bit when I was hired on in the fall of 2011. For that reason, the Marketing Manager involved me in a project to give the still-thriving company a much-needed face-lift. Over a year's worth of work finally resulted in Sunflower's fresh new look.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

:: Leveling Up—A First Look at an Original Game ::

Last year my brother-in-law, Jeremiah Aldrich, told me about an idea he had for a game. His thought was that the funnest part about role-playing games like Dungeons and Dragons or Pathfinder, is leveling up. You get better at the things you do, and learn new things that make the things you already do even better. Translation: you get to kill your enemies in funner, flashier ways. The bliss of leveling up is no more tangible, perhaps, than for spellcasters, who get bigger and better spells. I mean really, everyone who has ever played a wizard looks forward to level 3 if only to get their first fireball!

The downside to playing RPGs, of course, is that you only get to level up once every 4 or 5 sessions (depending on the speed of your experience track). Even then, if your sessions are spread out as far as ours tend to be, that might mean hurling your first fireball is literally months away!

Jeremiah said he wished there were a game that would let you level up several times in one session, and only take 45 minutes to play. We talked about the idea for several hours. After discussing what said hypothetical game would be like, we both stared at each other meaningfully. Holy crap, I thought. We just made up a game. This thing could be real.

Jeremiah Aldrich and LeAnna Herrmann at the first playtest.
Over the past several months Jeremiah and I have been going back and forth with character concepts, refining rules, and making up spells that make you want to swear, they're so much fun to cast. I printed up some spell cards on paper, gathered some minis and dice, and drew up a game board on my vinyl battlemat and we went at it. After playtesting the game several times with friends and refining the more glaring problems, it started to look promising...

Then, last weekend, I went to Planet Comicon.

Read more about our brain-child after the jump.

Monday, March 17, 2014

:: KantCon 2014 Feature—Massive Defender ::

Here it comes! No, seriously, get ready!! Almost there!!! It's...
The man, the myth, the Canadian
That's right, the newest member of the KantCon cast is none other than the famous Mutants & Masterminds character created by Ethan Parker himself.

Massive is an old favorite of those who listen to Gamer's Haven Podcast, and has been around since KantCon's institution. Like Uncle Sam promoting War Bonds, Massive has smiled up at KantCon participants from the side of the raffle ticket box, gently reminding them that good citizens only need $1 for a chance to win!

For a full bio of this Canadian Comic-Book-Nerd-Turned-Crime-Fighter, visit The short story is that the scrawny Clark Whippleman was once a mild-mannered Toronto native living out his dream of working in a comic store. But one day everything changed when he stopped to help a frail old man in the street. One touch from the old man granted Clark the strength to lift mountains and survive the impact of a falling meteor. Discovering the extent of his new-found powers, Clark set out to be the best role model for Canada since Captain Decency. Thus was born MASSIVE DEFENDER!

For my interpretation of Massive, I tried to tap into the cheese factor hard core. Massive is a living example of meta-fiction; very literally seeing himself as a comic book character brought into the real world, he's full of one-liners and long self-righteous monologues. For this reason, I gave him the good-ol'-boy grin with a matching sparkle coming off his Maple Leaf Badge. I always thought of him as the Captain America of Canada, which inspired the stance, gloves and boots. Finally, to sell the Canadian vibe, I threw him into black slacks with a white stripe and a Mountie jacket, complete with over-sized collar.

I'm happy to report that Ethan whole-heartedly approves.

Be sure to stop by to join a Buy-In-Game and pick up your three-day badge to KantCon 2014, running July 18-20 and now at the Overland Park Convention Center.

More images after the jump.

:: Professional Thug :: (Evil Teacher Productions)

Just wanted to share with you all a little sketch I did recently for the infamous Andre Faucher of Evil Teacher Productions. The Professional Thug, ladies and gentlemen:

Andre described to me a brute that specialized in demoralizing his victims before beating them senseless. Why fight when you can intimidate people into giving you what you want?

This lesson was hard-learned for our little friend, whose missing tooth and scars told of battles he might rather have avoided... Or might those distinguishing characteristics just be another ploy to throw the guards off when he's on the run from his latest job?

Sure, his mohawk and tattoos make him a memorable character, but remove the wig and the stage makeup and you have a normal-looking fellow minding his own business. "Wot's that? Missing tooth and a scar, you say, guv'nor? That very bloke dashed by just now, sure thing. Have a nice day and such." And with the tip of his bowler the Professional Thug is on to his next victim.

Be sure to check out the Professional Thug and all of Andre's other ingenious character stat-blocks at Evil Teacher Productions. You can even download free PDFs of your favorites to use in your next RPG!