CAR-PGa NEWSLETTER, Vol. 32, No. 12, December 2023

An international network of researchers into all aspects of role-playing games

David Millians, Editor

Paideia School, 1509 Ponce de Leon Avenue, Atlanta, Georgia 30307 USA


Hi All,

We’re planning a board meeting later this month, so we’ll soon have more to report out. Part of that discussion is our review of our performance against goals and the publication of our annual report. The report is still being created, but generally speaking, we achieved some of our goals while fell short of others. This had at least partially to do with my vacation schedule as well as the world making up for lost time. All told, we conducted eight virtual panels, grew the membership by nine, and increased our subscribership to the YouTube channel by 15. We’ve already got two guests lined up for 2024, but as always, I can use your help. If you think there’s someone we should spotlight, please let us know.

January begins our voting for board membership. We’ll have more info for you, but as I always say, the health of the CAR-PGA is determined by how much people vote. We’re at full board membership, which means if anyone else runs for a seat someone won’t get it. I think that’s healthy for any organization; if we can get to that point, I’ll know CAR-PGA is back on its feet. My job has always been to put myself out of a job, and I look forward to the day when other folks can help take CAR-PGA in new and exciting directions.

But for now, I hope you have a wonderful holiday with friends and family, make as much time to game as circumstances allow, and cherish those close to you. I’m so glad to have made it this far — some of my friends haven’t — and I so appreciate all your support of the CAR-PGA over the years.

Here’s to 2024!


Mike Tresca


Semi-Review: Japan Fest Atlanta 2023

By David Millians

My wife and I had a delightful day at Japan Fest Atlanta on Saturday, September 17, of this year. In addition to music, calligraphy, and bonsai and flower arranging classes, there was, of course, anime and lots of cosplay, as well as visual arts and even a couple of games. It wasn’t Gen Con or even Dragon Con in its emphasis, but it was hobby fandom adjacent, and some of our tribe was definitely present.

Japan Fest was also dramatically more diverse than any game convention I have ever attended. I don’t have reliable statistics, and I won’t speculate out of a place of ignorance, but in addition to an unsurprising presence of people with Asian ancestry, broadly speaking, it also had many, many African-Americans celebrating their various interests. This is in Atlanta, Georgia, which is almost 50% black in population and where Dragon Con is huge and draws all sorts of people but still sure does look white.

At Japan Fest I was also struck by the frequent and casual expression of sexual and gender choices, both conforming and otherwise. There was an accepting tone and visibility in so many ways not common to the mainstream and most white-cis-male game gatherings of any size.

We have a long way to go and lots to learn to make our public hobby gatherings look and feel like this year’s Japan Fest. I think it can happen. Let’s welcome everyone, everyone.


This is a compilation of articles and other resources that have come to the editor’s attention over the last month. Everyone is welcome to send bibliographic information about anything you discover that fits the mission of CAR-PGa and this newsletter. (2023 Nov 17) The Awards 2023. Celebrating creativity in RPGs.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 2) TTRPGkids 2023 gift and charity guide. Items and causes for the season.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 6) Using TTRPGs to teach science and engineering. Great ideas and examples for all ages.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 7) Review: Wizards, Warriors, and Wellness from The Bodhana Group. Insights into therapeutic games.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 13) Review of The Library Game, an adventure for learning about libraries. Learning skills in a magical archive under threat.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 15) Featured Project: Sprinkles is Missing. Family-friendly fun.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 15) Talk audio (Teaching Kids Cire Life Skills with TTRPGs) from TTRPGkids at MC3 fall 2023. Resources as well.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 16) Interview with David from DnD Adventure Club. Supports for introducing new players and kids to D&D with an open mind.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 19) This month in children’s RPGs with Family Fantasy RPG – November 2023. Food, festivals, and more.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 20) Tips and tricks: Creating all-ages friendly TTRPG NPCs. Media sources, details, and improvisation.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 27) TTRPG and D&D themed chapter books and graphic novels tweens and teens. Short descriptions and reviews, plus links to more ideas.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 28) TTRPGkids on Ludology Podcast, Episode 7: Helping Kids Track and Use Spells in TTRPGs. Spells and any other special actions.

Campbell, Steph (2023 Nov 30) Review of What’s Popping Fellow Kids, a cringy game about fitting in. Teaches kids to GM while exploring inclusivity within a mystery.

Carter, Chase (2023 Nov 2) A New York board game cafe is joining rhe wave of unionisation across TCC, RPG and tabletop companies. Workers at Brooklyn Strategist store exemplify and trend in the industry. Vote passes to unionize.

Carter, Chase (2023 Nov 8) ChatGPT will soon let AI teach you board game rules. Not quite there yet but improving.

Carter, Chase (2023 Nov 9) Dungeons & Dragons wants its 2024 rulebooks to stay relevant and compatible for another decade. The perennial issue of keeping game rules, language, and culture up to date.

Carter, Chase (2023 Nov 23) Monopoly and Dungeons & Dragons owner announces trio of winners for 2023 Women Innovators of Play Challenge. Recognition and good PR as well.

Carter, Chase (2023 Nov 23) D&D co-creator’s son just launched a fantasy shoe line as part of a his lifestyle brand for gamers. Luke Gygax’s G20 project.

Hisham, Khairul (2023 Nov 28) Hishgraphics Games Training. Using games for learning with a focus on foreign languages.

Jarvis, Matt (2023 Nov 13) Announcing the finalists for the Tabletop Awards 2023, this year’s standout board games ROGs and creators. From hundreds of nominations, now heading into the finals.

Karama (2023 Nov 4) Gaming Through a Mental Health Lens. Podcast with TTRPG-adjacent insights.

McCrann, Gena (2023 Nov 7) The audience at the table is Candela Obscura’s biggest strength. Examining the layers of audience in streaming games.

Meehan, Alex (2023 Dec 1) “Actual play is a rare type of media where you feel empowered to create”: Critical Role’s Matthew Mercer on becoming a more relaxed DM and D&D going mainstream. Discoveries made through play and opportunities for the future.

Morrissey, Russ (2023 Nov 2) Check Out These Preview Of Hasbro’s New D&D ‘FAST’ Channel. Various types of shows and more from Dicebreaker.

Morrissey, Russ (2023 Nov 17) D&D’s Inclusivity Language Alterations in Core Rules. Varied and more thoughtfully chosen wordings.

Mott, Darryl (2023 Nov 30) US Postal Service Releases D&D Stamps. For the 50th anniversary.

Nelson, Samantha (2023 Nov 8) I Met my husband in a Vampire: The Masquerade LARP group and I’m not alone. Our social lives and families intersect with our games.

Nowakowski, Teresa (2023 March 31) 14 Fun Facts About Dungeons & Dragons. Some history.

Pulsipher, Lewis (2023 Dec 1) Reassessing Tolkien’s Influence. Strongly influential in some areas of RPGs, little in others.

Tresca, Mike (2023 Nov 7) Game Over, Now What?. Debriefing and decompressing after a big game.

Tresca, Mike (2023 Nov 14) Please Play With Me?. Vulnerabilities in seeking playmates.

Tresca, Mike (2023 Nov 23) Gift Ideas for the DM Who Has Eveything. Games, game accessories, and something for the cat.

Tresca, Mike (2023 Nov 27) Gift Ideas for Players. Diverse game aids.

Urbanski, Charity (2023) How to Make a Monster. Monsters of oppressive systems of culture.

© Copyright 2023 by the Committee for the Advancement of Role-Playing Games (CAR-PGa), ISSN 1071 7129. The CAR-PGa Newsletter is a monthly publication. For more information contact David Millians, Editor, Paideia School, 1509 Ponce de Leon Avenue, Atlanta, Georgia 30307 USA, phone (404) 808-1070, fax (404) 377-3491, e-mail Back issues are available. Contributions of material from the membership are urged, and the byline is responsible for content. Deadline is the last weekday of the month, email preferred. Permission is granted to copy anything in the Newsletter, provided we get a credit line in the publication copying it, and it doesn’t have someone else’s copyright on it. Information, including details on joining CAR-PGa, can be obtained on the Internet at