Pay Attention: Black Voices in the RPG Community

Tabletop Micdrop
Jun 2, 2020 · 7 min read

A (non-exhaustive) list of Black folks you should give space to that are active members of the TTRPG community

If you thought that Tabletop Micdrop was apolitical you were wrong. Being apolitical is being political. It is doing nothing. It is an acceptance of the status quo. Do something. Boost Black voices. Educate yourself. Support Black artists. Donate. Stand up for Black lives. Listen.

Support, follow, and pay attention to these voices in our community.

Orion Black

Orion is a nonbinary queer game designer. They designed Mutants in the Night, a Forged in the Dark TTRPG about fighting back against a system that is rigged against you, as well as plot ARMOR, a one-player TTRPG about the invincibility of your mecha anima protagonist. They are also a contracted WotC Narrative Designer and a DnD Beyond contributor.

Find them on: Twitter | Itch.io
Send them $ via venmo or via CashAPP (username $LavKnight)

Gabe James

Gabe James is an independent game designer who has designed game S0urce C0de, a sci-fi fantasy TTRPG where play capability includes high-tech futuristic or apocalyptic dystopia, as well as Hidden Treasures, a visual novel/dating sim based in a fantasy universe build up around dating Goblins. He’s also created a Class Modifier Module for DnD 5e that is a narrative-driven character creation tool for modifiers by class rather than race.

Find him on: Twitter | Twitch | Itch.io
Support him on Patreon or buy him a coffee

Austin Walker

Austin is the host of Friends at the Table, an actual play podcast about worldbuilding, character development, and fun interaction between friends, and also host of Waypoint Radio (VICE Games), a conversational podcast about everything video games and related media.

Find him on: Twitter
Support him on Patreon

Misha Bushyager

Misha is a longtime TTRPG and larp designer. Not only did she co-found New Agenda Publishing, that successfully crowdfunded their first game, Orun, a post-apotheosis and afro-centric space opera RPG, but she’s a writer, editor, and sensitivity reader. She’s a curator for More Seats at the Table and has worked on games such as Masks Unbound and Fate of Cthulhu. Misha also launched the #28DaysofBlackRPGs for Black History Month in February 2019, which you can still go through and find incredible Black game designers.

Find her on: Twitter | Black Girl Gameworks
Buy her a coffee

Shareef Jackson

Shareef is the DM of the DnD 5e actual play Rivals of Waterdeep, a live stream that features an all-POC cast on the official DnD Twitch channel, and is also a STEM diversity advocate.

Find him on: Twitter | Website
Buy him a coffee

Aabria Iyengar

Aabria is the CMO for Dice Envy and a well-known podcaster and streamer, known for her work with Hyper RPG, Saving Throw, Happy Jacks RPG, and Twelve-Sided Stories. She’s a writer, actor, and model.

Find her on: Twitter (and the above links)

Cole Burkhardt

Cole is a voice actor, sensitivity consultant, director, and audio producer. They are the founder of the Piece of Cake Podcasting Network, a volunteer organization assisting marginalized artists with podcast production devoted to people of color and made by people of color. Not only have they been in a variety of podcasts, such as The Godshead Incidental, Unplaced, and Lavender Ladies, but they are the creator and showrunner of Null/Void, a science-fiction audio drama. They are also one of the organizational team members of International Podcast Month.

Find them on: Twitter (and the above links)
Buy them a coffee

T K Johnson

T K is the DM for the official DnD Twitch stream, Tales From The Mists, a moody, atostpheric, gothic-horror actual play. They have been lauded for being an evocative, immersive, engaging, and haunting storyteller. They are also a writer and editor, with credits on such works as Uncaged, Eat the Rich, Beyond the Basics, and more.

Find them on: Twitter | Website

Tanya DePass

Tanya is the founder and director of I Need Diverse Games, a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to better diversification in gaming, as well as a writer, designer, and editor. She’s a cast member for the DnD 5e actual play Rivals of Waterdeep, a live stream that features an all-POC cast on the official DnD Twitch channel. Tanya is known for her written and spoken work, through publications such as Polygon, Vice Gaming, Uncanny Magazine, and others, and through appearances of talks and panels she’s been on.

Find her on: Twitter | Website | Twitch
Buy her a coffee

POC in TTRPGs

POC in TTRPGs is an individual who, I believe, keeps his name private. His goal is to amplify and inspire the involvement of people of color in the TTRPG community. He is an activist in the community dedicated to making space for and lifting up people of color in TTRPGs.

Find him on: Twitter | Website
Buy him a coffee

Bree

Bree is a larper, illustrator, actor, singer, and DM. She strives to create a safe space for people of color in nerd communities. They recently launched a merch line, Here to Stay, which is a charity collection that donates proceeds to creators of color in the TTRPG community.

Find them on: Twitter
Buy her a coffee

KA

KA is a Black Ace Game Developer who makes visual novels and TTRPGs, such as Magical Girls & Mecha, a pocket-sized Legacy TTRPG made for Discord, and It’s Dangerous To Go Alone-Take This!, a spur of the moment micro RPG where the contents of the GM’s in-real-life bag make all the difference.

Find her on: Twitter | Itch.io
Buy her a coffee

Bee Zelda

Bianca is a podcaster and streamer known for their role on The Broadswords, all women & non-binary D&D 5e podcast focusing on role play & inclusivity at the gaming table, as well as on The Facades of Gods, an actual play podcast using the accelerated Fate system. They are also an official GM for Magpie Games.

Find them on: Twitter (and the above links)
Buy them a coffee

C’loni Bailey

C’loni, or Mistress Verse, is a cosplayer, podcaster, and producer known for her work with the all-PoC LGBTQ+ DnD 5e twitch stream, Plot Hunters. She has also done some seriously cool Dragon Age Cosplay.

Find her on: Twitter | Website
Buy her a coffee

Jonaya Kemper

Jonaya is a writer, game designer, and LARPer. She’s known in the community for her study and articles on how players interact with various forms of roleplaying (tabletop and larp) and her activity at cons around the world where she is often a panelist. Her work centers on folks who carry multiple marginalizations.

Find her on: Twitter | Website
Buy her a coffee or support her on Patreon.

Jess Ross-Nikolai

Jess is an editor, writer, and podcaster. She’s known as a player on the all-ages actual play D&D 5e podcast, d20 Dames, as well as for her work as a narrative designer for Multiverse, an online video game platform that makes it easy to make, play, stream, and share TTRPGs. She’s also a contract editor for WotC.

Find her on: Twitter | Website
Buy her a coffee

MORE FOLKS TO FOLLOW

This list is getting a lot of traction and I’m being pointed toward more Black folks in the community. As more folks are brought to my attention, I’ll update a quick list below to include them.

PikaChulita, Streamer: Twitter

Helen Gould, Editor/Sensitivity Reader: Twitter

Lloyd Gyan, Game Designer: Twitter

Virginia Page, Streamer: Twitter

Mitesh Lamba, CRUK Community Manager: Twitter

Quinn Murphy, Game Designer: Twitter

Nadja Otikor, Game Designer/Streamer: Twitter

Krystina Arielle, Streamer: Twitter

Deejay Knight, Streamer/Voice Actor: Twitter

Eloy Lasanta, Game Designer: Twitter

Whitney Delagio, Artist: Twitter

Jerry Grayson, Game Designer: Twitter

Laura Simpson, Game Designer: Twitter

Briana Lawrence, Artist/Author/Cosplayer: Twitter

Julia B. Ellingboe, Game Designer: Twitter

Mad Jay Brown, Writer/Podcaster: Twitter

Chris Spivey, Game Designer: Twitter

Jabari Weathers, Illustrator/Game Designer: Twitter

Omari Akil, Game Designer: Twitter

Brandon O’Brien, Game Designer: Twitter

Rich Lescouflair, Game Designer/Writer: Twitter

Brandon Dixon, Game Designer/Writer: Twitter

Violet Dreamer, Writer: Twitter

Mike Pondsmith, Game Designer

Nicholas Masyk, Game Designer: Twitter

Note from the editor: For transparency, this was edited post-publishing to remove two names, Russ Wilde, who is South Asian, and Aser Tolentino, who is Filipino. They are not Black. They and I (Tess, the editor) discussed this.

Tabletop Micdrop is a publication about tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs), storytelling, and the RPG podcast industry. We want to share our passion for the TTRPG audio medium, introduce folks to new shows, and explore the RPG podcast industry together.

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Tabletop Micdrop

A publication about tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs)…

Tabletop Micdrop

A publication about tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs), storytelling, and the RPG podcast industry.

Tabletop Micdrop

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The editorial team behind the Tabletop Micdrop publication and newsletter about tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs), storytelling, and the RPG podcast industry.

Tabletop Micdrop

A publication about tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs), storytelling, and the RPG podcast industry.

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