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MidWest GamingNews
GenCon 2006

Short Q&A 1: Author/game designer Matt Forbeck

[Editor's Note: Matt Forbeck is a professional fantasy and sci-fi author, game designer, freelancer, and more. He regularly attends Gen Con Indy and is one of the many friendly faces who's eager to help aspiring writers/game designers through seminars. For additional information on this creative talent, be sure to check out his official website at http://www.forbeck.com]

1. T. Rob: What was your favorite moment/event of Gen Con Indy 2006, and what made it so special?

Matt: "Handing out the Diana Jones Award at the DJA party. Malcolm Craig of Contested Ground and Gregor Hutton of Boxninja accepted on behalf of Irish Gaming Convention Charity Auctions, and they were gracious and wonderful about it."

[Editor's Note: Further information on the Diana Jones Award can be found at http://www.dianajonesaward.org]

2. T. Rob: Why do you suppose it is that authors and game designers (those attending Gen Con) are so helpful in providing tips and guidance to aspiring writers and/or game designers?

Matt: "We've all been there before. Every pro started as a fan at one point, and we're so grateful to those who helped us out that we'd like to do the same for others. At least, that's how I feel, and I know many pros who feel the same."

3. T. Rob: How many years have you been attending Gen Con and how many years have you been a professional game designer/author? Also, please cite the products you've created that most readers would be familiar with.

Matt: "This August was my 25th Gen Con in a row. I started going as a kid growing up in southern Wisconsin. I've been a professional writer and game designer since I was in college, and I've been at it full time since 1989. I've had an eclectic career, but I'm probably best known for my Eberron and Blood Bowl novels, the Marvel Heroes Battle Dice game, the WildStorms TCG, the Brave New World RPG, and my time as the president of Pinnacle Entertainment (publishers of Deadlands)."

4. T. Rob: What has been your favorite project (as a writer and/or game designer) to work on so far and why?

Matt: "They're all great. It would be hard to choose just one. Secret of the Spiritkeeper was my first mass-market novel, so it'll always be special to me, but I enjoyed just about everything I worked on."

5. T. Rob: What project do you most hope to get the opportunity to work on in the future?

Matt: "I'd love to be the guy who comes up with the Next Big Thing. In the meantime, I've always wanted to write Spider-Man comics, and I hope to try my hand at a screenplay soon."

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Short Q&A 2: Gen Con Indy attendee Phil Yellott

[Editor's Note: Phil Yellott is a Star Wars and Ghostbusters aficianado from Hallsville, Texas, and regularly attends Gen Con Indy. Further information on Yellott and his alter-ego TK-656 can be found at http://www.tk656.com]

1. T. Rob: First, how many years have you been attending Gen Con and how many years have you assisted with security as an Imperial Stormtrooper?

Phil: "Attending for seven years now. Been in the 501st for two years and did volunteering at C3, Gen Con '05, Gen Con '06."

2. T. Rob: What is it about Gen Con that brings you back year after year?

Phil: "I go to play games and secondarily to wear costumes with my crazy friends."

3. T. Rob: How did you get involved with the 501st Legion and what are the main goals of the organization?

Phil: "I saw people at Gen Con '04 in armor and wanted to wear it also. From Article I of our Legion Charter document: http://www.501st.com/mission.php."

"...The Legion is a volunteer club formed for the express purpose of bringing together costume enthusiasts and giving them a collective identity within which to operate. The Legion's aims are to celebrate the Star Wars movies through the wearing of costumes, to promote the quality and improvement of costumes and props, and most importantly to contribute to the local community through charity and volunteer work..."

4. T. Rob: What was your favorite moment and/or event at Gen Con Indy 2006 and why?

Phil: "Wearing armor is always fun, people's reactions are great. I enjoyed playing True Dungeon again, we do it every year. Also walking around town with multiple other people in Ghostbusters garb was a hoot."

5. T. Rob: Were you assigned the TK-656 designation or were you allowed to pick it? If you were allowed to pick it, was there some signifigance to that number choice? I'm assuming TK-421 is a reserved designation due to the one in Episode IV -- is that true?

Phil: "You are allowed to choose preferences of the available numbers, but not guaranteed. 421 is reserved, yes. I wanted a short, easy to remember number."

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[Editor's Note: Edits for grammar, punctuation, artifacts, and syntax made to press releases by GamingNews Editor T. Rob Brown, http://t-rob.com]

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