About Me and My Work
Heritage: Colombian-American, grew up in Colombia
Current Location: Portland, Oregon
Occupation: Environmental Health & Safety Consultant
Family: Fantastic wife, two kids who now play RPGs!
Favorite RPG: Dungeons & Dragons
Favorite Setting: Dark Sun, then Greyhawk
Favorite Monster: Flumph, then the Remorhaz, then the Behir
Favorite Adventure: I3 – Pharaoh
Favorite Character: Dwarven Ranger (Living Greyhawk character)
I have been playing roleplaying games since the sixth grade, in 1983. The nature of the game was transformative, providing me with a wealth of creative ideas, encouraging me to read and write for pleasure, and helping me to meet fantastic friends. Many of those friends were met through organized play, where I began to write adventures and contribute to the community.
I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to write for fantastic roleplaying game companies. My efforts include:
Co-Host, Mastering Dungeons podcast: Along with Shawn Merwin, we look at the game and the hobby of D&D from a variety of viewpoints: reporting the news, understanding the business, reviewing the products, and illuminating the design.
Published Work and Convention Adventures
- The Clockwork Tower (2023): An adventure written with my son during the pandemic. Coming to Kickstarter!
- The Forge of Foes (2023): Tools and guides to build, customize, and run fantastic monsters in your 5e fantasy games. Written with Mike Shea and Scott Fitzgerald Gray. Raised $290k on Kickstarter.
- Flee Mortals (2023): Contributed the hell hound and minotaur monsters to this amazing MCDM of reimagined 5E monsters.
- Apocalypse: The Complete GM’s Guide to Ending the World (2023): Wrote one of the essays in this excellent product created by Alan Tucker.
- Wildlands – Dreadhollow Forest: Tales of Woe (2022): Created a set of five adventures for Dwarven Forge and their Wildlands wilderness terrain.
- The Game Master’s Guide to Evolving Magic Items (2022): A supplement walking DMs through how to give out the right amount and potency of magic and treasure, how to make magic item rewards compelling, and new rules on creating signature items that evolve with each character.
- Rules for Collaborative Campaign Creation (2021): Provides a process for DMs to work with players to collaboratively create or focus a campaign. Based on my appearance on the official D&D Dragon Talk podcast. Available free if you join my mailing list, or for purchase on Itch.io or on DriveThru.
- Kingdoms & Warfare (2020): I wrote the adventure The Regent of Bedegar, found in the book created by MCDM Productions’ $1.37 million dollar Kickstarter. Working with MCDM was incredible!
- HeroQuest (2020-2021) – I was a guest designer for the revision of the beloved HeroQuest boardgame, creating the 14-quest scenario called Spirit Queen’s Torment! The game was crowdfunded in September of 2020 and I was the $3M stretch goal.
- Acquisitions Incorporated An official D&D hardback book! Released June 2019, this book was a collaboration between Penny Arcade and Wizards of the Coast. I was a lead writer, along with Shawn Merwin.
- DMs Guild collaborations, including: Elminster’s Candlekeep Companion, Scientific Secrets of Saltmarsh, Scientific Secrets of Avernus, and Encounters on the Savage Seas.
- Dwarven Forge: Caverns Deep (Free download, 2020): Currently working on the next adventure to support Dwarven Forge’s Caverns Deep! Kickstarter. It was also announced that both adventures may become a printed product.
- Dwarven Forge: Dungeon of Doom (Free download, 2019): Authored the official adventures to support the Dungeon of Doom Kickstarter set of Dwarven Forge Terrain. Actual play videos are found here!
- Chultan Death Curse: Revised! (2018): Revises the Death Curse and Meatgrinder Mode mechanics found in Tomb of Annihilation to provide greater emphasis on both story and challenge.
- Jungle Treks (2017, Dungeon Masters Guild): Co-authored with Eric Menge. Six fun and short adventures feature interesting challenges highlighting the dangers of Chult! Drop these into your Tomb of Annihilation or any wilderness campaign.
- 2017 and 2016 D&D Open (WotC). Co-authored with Shawn Merwin and Sean Molley. WotC contracted us to bring back the D&D Open, a challenging tournament held at major conventions between 1977 and 2013. We reworked the format to make it fun for both dedicated and casual players. Held at Origins 2016 and 2017, these adventure events received rave reviews and have become Wizard of the Coast’s premiere organized play event.
- Cloud Giant’s Bargain (2016, Fathom Acquisitions Incorporated special event): For the first time, Wizards of the Coast brought the PAX West Acquisitions Inc live event to 300 theaters across the US. Every person attending received a copy of the adventure I wrote, for 5th-7th level characters. I included advice and helpful information for new and casual DMs.
- The Artifact (2016, WotC): 4-hour Adventurers League adventure set in Ravenloft. This tale of horror provides a new secret level to the Amber Temple, first published in Curse of Strahd. Incorporating elements of the classic game, Clue, adventurers must find who did it, with which item, and where… but it changes each time the adventure is run.
- Adamantine Chef: Supreme Challenge! (2016, Dungeon Masters Guild): My first adventure published independently through the Guild. Set in Kara-Tur, this humorous adventure features innovative encounters to provide a great experience based upon martial arts tropes and cooking contests. Includes links to WotC’s storyline adventures and to The Five Deadly Shadows.
- The Howling Void (2015, WotC): 4-hour Adventurers League Expeditions adventure concluding a trilogy. Sole author, working with Elemental Evil storyline. Set in an air node below the Monastery of the Yellow Rose, near Mulmaster. Ran at Origins 2015 and Gen Con 2015
- Corruption in Kryptgarden (2014, WotC): Sole author for the first Epic adventure for the new organized play campaign, featuring interactive elements where the actions at each table impacted the others and the overall adventure’s progress. This was the largest event ever run for D&D.
- Vault of the Dracolich (2013, WotC): The first in-store public gameday to use interactive mechanics and also first to use the playtest version of 5th Edition D&D. I am credited as the developer, but Scott Fitzgerald Grey and Mike Shea and I all wrote and developed, with Scott making final edits. It was a fantastic project, with great team collaboration.
- Confrontation at Candlekeep (2013, WotC): Co-author (with Shawn Merwin) on Gen Con 2013 2-hour event involving Forgotten Realms. Wrote interactive elements and half of the encounters, collaborating with Shawn on the overall design. Originally targeted for Gen Con 2013 only, also run at PAX Prime 2013 to great acclaim, then re-run for PAX East 2014. Wizards employees ran it at a handful of other conventions, including SakuraCon 2014, where Matthew Mercer (actor and voice actor) acted as First Reader.
- Fury of the Lord of the Sea, (2013, Kobold Press) – I wrote a short adventure used as a ‘stretch goal’ for the Kickstarter of the Midgard Bestiary for 4th Edition book. The adventure was a premium offering available to everyone at the $75 or higher level and is now sold online.
Dungeons & Dragons Insider
- Traveling the Athasian Wastes (Dungeon 202, May, 2012): Describes seven terrain types of Athas, providing an imaginative encounter sketch for each one that DMs can use with stock Dark Sun monsters.
- The True (Dungeon 202, May, 2012): Article on a secret organization in the Dark Sun setting. Provided information on how to bring it to life as a threat in the City-State of Tyr. Included statistics for 4 new foes.
- The Ecology of the Vegepygmy (Dungeon 201, April 2012): Article looked back at Barrier Peaks classic adventure and other sources, providing ecological, cultural, physiological, and other information. Provided new disease, 4 new vegepygmies, shrieker, and thornies. Also created a vegepygmy companion character.
- The Five Deadly Shadows – (Dungeon 195, October 2011). Adventure set in Kara-Tur/Living Forgotten Realms that used the code of Bushido to walk players and PCs through the culture as they took on five deadly assassins. Highly regarded and became an LFR organized play adaptation.
- Design & Development – The Five Deadly Shadows – column on Dungeons & Dragons web site, October 2011 in support of article, walking through the design process.
- Step Into the Ring – July 2011 Dragon 401. Article examining wrestling matches, arena competitions, and other physical contests. Provided rules, rewards, and an example match using Fortune Cards.
Selected Blog, Streaming, and Podcast Appearances
- You can find my YouTube channel and streaming appearances here.
- Eldritch Lorecast: discussed the D&D Summit in April 2023.
- Dragon Talk appearances: I am apparently fortunate to be the guest appearing most often on the official D&D podcast for the How to DM segment.
- Roll20 blog: I wrote a 5-part series on the Spelljammer release in the summer of 2022.
- I was honored to be a Guest of Honor at Gamehole Con starting in 2021, appearing on Panels and Streaming shows.
- The Designer’s Den: Ginny Loveday and I discussed designing and how to advance an RPG career. Jan 2021.
- Owlbear Soup: Hosted by Justin Turner and Richard Malena-Webber. Discussed Acquisitions Inc, writing D&D with my son, Lore of Neverwinter.
- NBC LX / NBC Universal – interviewed by host Lauren Meyers on the benefits of D&D for kids and young adults. August 2020.
- Nerdarchy – Live Chat Revivified: Spoke with Dave for an hour regarding topics from conventions to adventure design to hobby economics to horror and more. May 2020.
- Tome Show – discussing how to portray NPCs, with Tracy Hurley and Eugenio Vargas. January 2020.
- Ego Check with the Id DM – Teos Abadia on Designing Acquisitions Incorporated. July 30, 2019.
- Tabletop Voices – Interview with host James Introcaso on first episode of the show. October 10, 2018.
- Dragon Talk official D&D podcast – With Claudio Pozas, discussing growing up in Latin America and playing D&D there. March 26, 2018.
- Newbie DM Minicast on Don’t Split the Podcast Network – how to handle character introductions so they memorable and you can build upon them. February, 2018.
- DM’s Deep Dive with Sly Flourish – Encounter Building. Discussed how to build great encounters in D&D 5E. December 29, 2017.
- Table Top Babble – 005 Making Money in the RPG Business – discussed what it is like to try to make a living in the tabletop RPG industry with Rob Schwalb and host James Introcaso. January, 2017.
- Ego Check with the ID DM – Discussed diversity in gaming, gatekeepers, and more. November, 2016.
- Reviewing Origins and the D&D Open, Part 1 and Part 2. Misdirected Mark Podcast, Mastering Dungeons. July, 2016.
- Seven Questions With Teos Abadia. Artificer’s Intuition blog. Interview on Ashes of Athas and gaming background. January 5, 2013.
- Why We Should Care About the Flumph (AKA Owlbears, WTF?) – Roving Band of Misfits, Nov 17, 2011. Article examined history of the often-maligned creature the “flumph” from AD&D Fiend Folio and using a tongue-in-cheek style to proclaim its virtues. Created 4E statistics for three different Flumph creatures based on the lore. Later included by Band of Misfits in a Dungeon Crawl entitled The Cave of Crystals.
- Going Last Podcast – Appeared on Session 4 (Feb 8, 2011, first guest on show); Session 31 (August 17, 2011, Gen Con review); Session 42 (Nov 3, 2011, Ashes of Athas); Session 75 (July 7, 2012, Ashes of Athas); Session 94 (April 1, 2013, co-host, review DDI); Session 133 (July 29, 2014, Adventurers League Epics, Gen Con).
- One Page Dungeon 2015 – One of three judges selecting top adventures from a pool of 97. Participated in Google + Hangout, recorded on May 28, 2015. Other two judges were Steve Winter and Martin Thomas.
- Patreon #5 – Organized Round Table on the Misdirected Mark Podcast. Discussion of organized play history, benefits, and future. December, 2013.
- All About Ashes of Athas with Teos Abadia. On Sly Flourish blog and YouTube. Discussion of the campaign design. March 1, 2013.
- Misdirected Mark Podcast – Episode 48 – Ashes of Teos. Guest appearance to discuss end of Ashes of Athas campaign and Winter Fantasy convention. Feb 7, 2013.
- Living Through Today’s Organized Play Challenges – Roving Band of Misfits, Jan 24 2012.
- Organized Play People: Teos Abadia and Chad Brown [Ashes of Athas, 4E]. On JP on Gaming blog. Interview on our efforts with Ashes of Athas. December 12, 2011.
- Second part of above interview on January 16, 2012.
- Worked starting in 2020 to incorporate Spanish-language tables and create a Spanish-language community at major online conventions, including Gen Con, Winter Fantasy, D&D special events, and the D&D Virtual Weekends.
- Author and developer, gameday events and Adventurers League Epic and Expeditions adventures (see above)
- Lead Administrator for Ashes of Athas (2011-2013), a Dark Sun organized play campaign run by Baldman Games and in collaboration with Wizards of the Coast. Identified, recruited, and selected all authors for all 21 adventures. Developed most adventures and authored several. Ashes of Athas adventures have been requested from the campaign more than 9,000 times.
- Author, Living Forgotten Realms. Wrote three advantures for the campaign, including the first ever organized play adventures for the Paragon tiers of play.
- Author and organizer, Living Greyhawk (2004-2008). Authored adventures and battle interactive scenarios for the campaing.
- Administered the Longbowmen of Geoff Metaorganization (creating rules and fictional details for an organization of archers aligned along paths of martial/divine/dark power; creating and updating PC and NPC ranks within military organization; recruiting player members; organizing in-character events; serving as lore master to regional administrators and adventure authors)
- Design and authoring team for Tidecon convention interactive. Authored “reverse dungeon” mini-mission where characters could play monsters, designed humorous/historical book certificates players could buy, designed method for a land auction granting winning bidders special jobs, land parcels, and buildings in a new fictional territory. Edited events authored by others.
- Created Geoff Building Rules document, providing rules for players to have their characters buy and develop fictional buildings in the region. Admin for all players that used the rules; tracked their buildings and approved placement within the fictional world.