Rising Phoenix GameCon

Panels, Speakers & Discussion Groups 2024

Come for the games, stay for the panels

Do's & Don'ts of Running Young People in Games

This is a seminar for Game Masters or players interested in the DO’s and DON’Ts on tables with kids. We are going to focus on convention games as in home games – although many of these guidelines will be useful to still follow – you will know the kids you are running and what they can and can’t handle!

Led by Alex Jackl

Discussion: How Gaming is Represented in Popular Media

There is no time in history that TTRPG’s have been seen in a more favorable light in media and community than now. Mainstream cinema and TV, ads, news articles, even educational classes all focusing on the positive side of gaming. This group will look at the effects of that and what that means for the future of gaming.

Panel: Steve Kenson, James Carpio, Jon Johnson, Oscar Rios

The Intersection between Gaming and Writing

Many gamers write and many writers game. How do we balance both these passions. What do we love and hate about both? How does gaming affect writing and writing affect gaming; besides turning into a 7-page character backstory?


Panel: Peter Bryant, Jayson Elliot, Trisha J. Wooldridge, Troy Osgood, Steve Kenson, Oscar Rios, Stewart Grosse

Challenges and Joys of Running Different Types of Con Games

For years, we’ve been running different styles con games. A frank talk about the pros and cons of running multi-table, last man standing, multi-group, character swap, table swap, fundraising funnels, timed games, and more.

Panel: Sean Murphy, David Clarkson, Peter Bryant, Scott Legault, Alexander Jackl

Boston Gaymers : How to run Safe & Inclusive Game Nights

Join the Boston Gaymers as we talk about the secrets to hosting epic game nights that are welcoming, inclusive, and full of joy for everyone, regardless of skill level or identity. We will share tips from our experience running monthly queer board game nights as well as other events such as one-shots and gaymer parties.

Panel: Andrea Cerys Morton, Chris Chedrawi, Matthew Vincent, Jules Rodriquez

How To Be an Ally

Boston Gaymers invites you to join us for our panel, “How to Be a Better Ally”, designed to help allies become more supportive of LGBTQ+ players in both video game and tabletop gaming communities. Learn more about the experiences of LGBTQ+ gamers, Understand the challenges they face in gaming communities, Discover practical tips and strategies to be a more inclusive and supportive ally, and engage in open discussion with our panelists.

Panel: Alexander Jackl, Briana Skowera, Trisha J. Wooldridge, Chris Chedrawi, Andrea Cerys Morton

Introduction to LitRPG

Arising out of a combination of writing and gaming, the LitRPG genre of writing has become very popular especially on the west coast and overseas. New England seems a little late to the craze. We’ve brought LitRPG authors to the convention to discuss this cool literary method of combining roleplay and fiction, many times including mechanics in the very story you’re reading. Come find out more!

Panel: Troy Osgood,  Trisha J. Wooldridge, Stewart Grosse

Exploring Identity In and Through Gaming

Role playing games provide an opportunity for players to explore identities, philosophies, and relationships in a dedicated space. Panelists and attendees will have an opportunity to share their own stories of exploration and how to make the gaming table a comfortable place for others to do the same.

Panel: Chris Chedrawi, Steve Kenson, Briana Skowera Trisha, Matthew Vincent, Andrea Cerys Morton, Jules Rodriquez

Varied Power Levels in the Same Game

In this class we will discuss how to integrate characters of different power, level, and even players of different experience into a single campaign or con game. For active GMs or anyone interested in running games.


Led by Alexander Jackl

Adding Romance, Relationships and Sex into your Games

(Note: May contain some mature content – adults only) This discussion will look at handling relationships of all kinds between player-characters and non-player-characters and how to handle friendships, rivalries, romance, and even intimate relationships. What are the pitfalls and the things to reinforce including tips on making NPCs more connected to the player-characters.

Panel: Naomi Price, Lara Moritz, Jen Eastman Lawerence, Alana Dietrick, Alexander Jackl

What does Writing have to do with RPGs Anyway?

Role-playing games have been around since the mid-1970s. How have authors fit into their development and ongoing popularity? We’ll chat with authors who’ve worked within and without the world of RPGs to discover the ins, outs, and joys of writing the fiction that pays tribute to fictional universes.

Panel: Trisha J. Wooldridge, Troy Osgood, Errick Nunnally, Stewart Grosse

Professor Protagonist Presents: Science in D&D 101

Science Educator and TTRPG enthusiast Eric Jackson presents gaming rules and scenarios through the lens of real science to make your game more fun. For this first event: Build a better dungeon through environmental science. We’ll explore how resource management and food webs can drive the structure of your adventure settings and discuss some interesting “real world” areas that can create challenges for players.


Led by Eric Jackson

Critical Chats

Casual Conversations Over Coffee

Care & Feeding of Your Campaign with Oscar Rios

Don’t toil overwriting pages of notes with long-term plans, or force your players into a path of your choosing. Life doesn’t follow a pre-set course and neither should your campaign. Learn how to channel the chaos your players bring to the campaign into something truly magical. Oscar Rios, president of Golden Goblin Press, shares his tips and techniques for growing meaningful, organic campaigns from a series of seemingly unrelated adventures. Age Range (+18)
Friday from 5:00 pm to 5:50 pm Critical Chat 1 in Que’chen

Publish My Adventure? Really? Edwin Nagy

Do you dream of writing game material for publication? Join Frog God Games’ published Game Designer Edwin Nagy as he discusses the similarities and differences between writing a game for your home group versus writing for mass Publication. Light snacks will be served. Age Range (+18)
Friday from 5:00 pm to 5:50 pm Critical Chat 2 in Que’chen

Writing & Worldbuilding with Trisha Wooldridge

Join published author Trisha Wooldridge and discuss Writing and Worldbuilding, the similarities, the differences and the pitfalls! Light snacks and coffee will be served for this personal, candid discussion. Age Range (+18)
Saturday from 12:00 pm to 12:50 pm Critical Chat 1 in Que’chen

There’s How Many? with Allen Hammack

Join guest Allen Hammack as he discusses how to adjust Challenge Ratings on the Fly and other advice from the legendary game designer in a relaxed candid conversation over light snacks and coffee. Age Range (+18)
Saturday from 12:00 pm to 12:50 pm Critical Chat 3 in Que’chen

The Best Player you can be! with Lara Moritz

There is so much info about how to be a great GM, but what about being the best player you can. Join Lara Moritz for a casual discussion on how to be a great player. Light snacks and coffee will be available. Age Range (13+)
Saturday from 12:00 pm to 12:50 pm Critical Chat 2 in Que’chen

LOCATION everybody! with Scott Legault

Scott Legault, Con Chair of Rising Phoenix and Owner of Dark Phoenix Events talks about how he writes games that build immersion for his players before they even sit down. A frank conversation and discussion of why real-life locations and events can add volumes of realism to your games. Light snacks and coffee will be served. Age Range (+18)
Saturday from 12:00 pm to 12:50 pm Critical Chat 4 in Que’chen

10lbs of game in a 2lb box with Ian Eller

Critical Chat with Game Designer and Published Author Ian Eller, How to get the most out of short campaigns. For years, Ian has been running this type of game at Cons across New England with great success, Join him over light snacks and coffee to have a frank, in-depth conversation about his game style. Age Range (+18)
Saturday from 5:00 pm to 5:50 pm Critical Chat 2 in Que’chen

Identity Crisis! with Jesse Gorton

Join Jesse Gorton, RPG Director of Necronomicon Providence and as she opens up about what happens when you are a historical re-enactor, LARPer, Gamer, and entertainer trying to find yourself and end up becoming a better, stronger person through playing the roles of others. An open discussion where light snacks and coffee will be served. Age Range (+18)
Saturday from 5:00 pm to 5:50 pm Critical Chat 3 in Que’chen

Let’s Write a Scenario...with Oscar Rios

Learn how to stop overthinking, toss away the stress and self-doubt to just roll up your sleeves, and create a scenario for Call of Cthulhu. Participants will select the story elements then guest Oscar Rios, author of more than a hundred scenarios for Call of Cthulhu, will demonstrate how they can be quickly tied together to create a playable adventure in less than one hour! Age Range (+18)
Saturday from 5:00 pm to 5:50 pm Critical Chat 1 in Que’chen

So There I Was... with Oscar Rios

Join guest Oscar Rios, president of Golden Goblin Press, for a discussion of some of the most memorable moments from actual games he’s run over the past thirty-five years! Stories of tragic deaths, unexpected victories, horror, humor, and daring do. At the end participants will share their own best story, with the winner (judged by Mr. Rios) receiving a free fiction book from the Golden Goblin Press catalog.
Sunday from 12:00 pm to 12:50 pm Critical Chat 1 in Que’chen