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The Mechanics

Company Officers

JD Wiker is President of The Game Mechanics, Inc. His RPG credits include work on the Star Wars Roleplaying Game and the Alternity line, particularly the Dark*Matter campaign setting.
Find out more about JD.

Stan! is Art Director and Project Manager of The Game Mechanics, Inc. With a background spanning West End Games, TSR, and Wizards of the Coast, Stan! has worked on wide selection of game titles, including Paranoia, the Dragonlance, Ravenloft, and Forgotten Realms settings for D&D, and d20 Modern.
Find out more about Stan!

Sean K Reynolds is a veteran of TSR and Wizards of the Coast, having worked on Dungeons & Dragons, Forgotten Realms, Greyhawk, and Alternity. A self-proclaimed d20 rules guru, Sean has strong opinions about strong and weak game design, and believes it's important to educated gamers about the game so they can make better choices about the books they buy.
Find out more about Sean.

Marc Schmalz (known as "Sparky" when he covered Internet newsgroups for Wizards of the Coast's Customer Services Group) managed the Wizards of the Coast web team and Internet presence at the time of the TSR purchase. Since departing, Marc has worked as a developer and project manager for computing companies. As Secretary, Treasurer, and Web Manager, Marc's responsibilities are the business operations and financial health of the new company, as well as its Internet presence. He has also been performing layout and design duties on The Game Mechanics products.
Find out more about Marc.


Gary Astleford is a freelance game designer and writer who lives and works in southern California. He has had a strong interest in role-playing games since childhood, and has been writing game-related material since the mid-nineties. In addition to writing two free publications for The Game Mechanics, Gary has contributed to Polyhedron Magazine, Thieves' Quarter: A City Quarters Sourcebook, Artifacts of the Ages: Legendary Weapons, Artifacts of the Ages: Rings, and the Fireborn role-playing game, which is being produced by Fantasy Flight Games. For more information, please give a visit.

Eric Cagle is a freelance game designer that has written enough books to count on both hands! He has designed for the Arms and Equipment Guide and the Fiend Folio for Dungeons & Dragonsand he contributed to the Ultimate Alien Anthology and Ultimate Adversaries for the Star Wars Roleplaying Game. He also co-designed Urban Arcana and the d20 Menace Manual for the d20 Modern Roleplaying Game. He's the co-author for Modern Magic from TGM as well as a frequent contributor to Dragon magazine and the Wizards of the Coast website. He'll keep writing until he runs out of fingers and toes to count on.

Adam Conus is the designer of The Game Mechanics logo and Torches and Pitchforks, a non-tradeable card game scheduled for release by Green Ronin Publishing. A veteran of Wizards of the Coast Customer Services, Adam is currently the Customer Service Rules Manager for the Wizards front line crew. Prior to answering rules phones, Adam was a design student at Art Institute of Seattle, and has recently jump-started his work in this field by designing logos for BattleBot teams and his former co-workers. If you like The Game Mechanics logo and are interested in commissioning a logo for your group or business, please feel free to contact Adam Conus about logo design services.

Jefferson Dunlap Jefferson Dunlap is the tireless gaming professional responsible for the prepress and preflight for most of the Wizards of the Coast products since 1995.

Clarence Harrison is a graduate of the Savannah College of Art and Design. Although new to the RPG market, he has been a professional illustrator for more than ten years and a DM for twice that. He lives in Virginia and pursues a day job as a mild-mannered field tech for a major telecommunications company.
To see more of his work, visit Clarence Harrison's online portfolio.

Khairul Hisham is a freelance illustrator who has been drawing science fiction and fantasy artwork for more than three decades, though his first dozen or so might have just be illegible pencil scratches when he was two; he can't really remember that far back. A founding member of the non-profit, defunct Star Wars Artists' Guild, Hisham has also been making and selling children's e-books at his site Hishgraphics Publications on the side. The Future Player's Companion PDF series was been his first work with The Game Mechanics. Hisham lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with his wife and son.

Mike Montesa has lived and worked in Japan as an English teacher for 13 years. His surroundings (and strong sake) influenced him to write the Origins Awards nominated Shiki for Gold Rush Games, and the similarly themed Land of the Rising Dead for Pinnacle Entertainment Group's Weird Wars line. He has also worked with Stan! back in the day, and has had material published in Pyramid Magazine and in a Japan-based gaming fanzine.

Rich Redman was one of the founding members of The Game Mechanics. He has worked on many RPG systems, including Dungeons & Dragons, the d20 Modern Roleplaying Game, Marvel Super Heroes Adventure Game, and the Dark*Matter setting for Alternity. You can find out more about Rich at his personal website,

Tammie Webb Ryan got her start in the game industry as one of the original playtesters for the Deadlands RPG. She has since worked for Last Unicorn Games and Wizards of the Coast, and has contributed to such diverse game lines as Star Trek: The Original Series, The Wheel of Time Roleplaying Game, and the d20 Modern Roleplaying Game. Currently Tammie works for the City of Kent Fire Department. She lives in Kent, Washington, with her husband Charles, three cats, and a dog, where she pines for sunnier climates.

Gary M. Sarli is an associate webmaster at SWRPGNetwork, winner of the 2002 ENnie for Best Fan Resource Site. He also moderates the Wizards of the Coast Star Wars message boards, edits the Star Wars Roleplaying Game FAQ, and spends the rest of his time working toward a PhD in international relations. Gary currently lives in Texas with his fiancée Allison.

Pete Schlough has been an illustrator ever since he could hold a pencil. His lifelong passion for telling stories visually was fueled early on by Star Wars and comic books. Studying art only sporadically in his youth, he eventually ended up studying illustration at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. However, life after art school proved more demanding than an art student might expect, and so he found his way into commercial design rather than his cherished illustration. In 2003, Pete was offered his first professional illustration job: Thieves' Quarter: A City Quarters Sourcebook, for The Game Mechanics, no less! This one job proved to be the start of an actual career in illustration, and Pete is now enjoying growing success in his lifelong passion for art. Visit Pete's online art gallery at

Mat Smith is an advertising/marketing copywriter at Wizards of the Coast who's been who's been playing RPGs for a disturbing number of years, and now spends an astonishing amount of time thinking about clever ways to get more people to do the same. While he's been writing his monthly Previews column for for over two years now, and occasionally gets the chance to do something for Dragon Magazine, Modern Magic is the first real-live roleplaying product he's ever weaseled his way into working on.

Neil Spicer is a freelance writer and editor from North Carolina who started gaming in the early 80's. His first foray into online publishing started with Action Check, a long-running e-zine for Alternity. Since then, he has produced several free publications for fans of the Star*Drive and Dark*Matter campaign settings. More recently, his work includes online PDFs for d20 System products such as Modern Chemistry and Modern Maladies, and now Future Player's Companion for The Game Mechanics. Neil currently resides in Charlotte with his wife Blai and daughter Kailey.

Vincent Szopa is an imaginary ASCII weasel. After spending the formative years of his life in Indiana, he moved to Japan to break into entertainment journalism. Having returned to the U.S. via Seattle, his experience with magazines has proven invaluable to The Game Mechanics since Vincent has proofed almost every product the company has released since its inception.

Rodney Thompson is a writer and developer from Chattanooga, TN, whose works include the Star Wars Hero's Guide and d20 Future, the Origins Award-nominated Stargate SG-1 Roleplaying Game, and Green Ronin's The Noble's Handbook and Mutants and Masterminds Annual #1. He has contributed to Artifacts of the Ages: Legendary Weapons and has provided additional web content for The Game Mechanics. Also the webmaster of the ENnie Award-winning website SWRPGNetwork, he is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and currently resides in Knoxville.

Jacob Elijah Walker is a young illustrator from the midwest. He has been working as a full time freelance commercial illustrator for the past two years since graduating with a degree in art and graphic design. In addition to his commercial clients he is trying to get back to what first inspired his drawing in the first place - games and storytelling. You can view his portfolio at, or contact him at

Christopher West is a professional cartographer whose credits include, among other things, the maps and diagrams for the Power of the Jedi sourcebook published by Wizards of the Coast. His work can be found in nearly every issue of Dungeon Magazine since the advent of 3rd Edition Dungeons & Dragons, as well as selected issues of Dragon Magazine, Polyhedron, and Star Wars Gamer.
Find out more about Christopher.

Penny Williams has a long history in the game industry. Most recently a Senior Editor in Wizards of the Coast's RPG R&D department, she was also RPGA Network Coordinator for TSR, Inc. and Senior Games Editor for another small game company in years past. Now she spends her time doing freelance writing and editing, as well as tutoring high school students in chemistry, math, English, and other subjects. Penny and her husband Skip live in the Seattle area, but look forward to returning to Wisconsin soon.

Ben Wootten was born in Essex, England in 1969, moving to New Zealand when he was three (his parents opted to follow the head strong youth), and has lived there since. Art has always been a strong passion, combined with the love of fantasy sci-fi the direction of film design and illustration seemed logical, but not so. As a young fellow Ben had aspirations of being the next Jacques Cousteau or David Attenborough, and accordingly gave up art as a subject when fifteen to follow the sciences. A degree in Zoology followed, it was here that Ben could see the down side of pursuing this career, more than likely it was going to lead to a life time of living at school/university. So after eight or nine years in remission a bad case of the arts flared up leading to a course in Visual Design and a chance meeting that found Ben working at Weta on the first pass at King Kong in 1996. The rest is recent history, LOTR, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, and King Kong. "All of this leads me to where I am now hunched over a computer at home drawing cool pictures for RPG books and the like. Life's odd, my childhood of RPGs and drawing monsters really did work out, go figure."
Find out more about Ben.

Unless otherwise noted, all content ©2002-2008 The Game Mechanics, Inc. All rights reserved.
Marc is working on a class project for grad school. It involves Free Computer Games.
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