Posts Tagged ‘Gen Con’

THEY CAME FROM GEN CON! – Grixxers, Di’roc’vespizhi, and Mikan

August 6, 2017

With the fiftieth anniversary of Gen Con right around the corner, I decided to complete a project that I’d been kicking around in my head for a while: writing a post about the small number of Gen Con-exclusive D&D characters we’ve seen over the years.

To be clear, this isn’t in reference to characters from games that were only run at Gen Con or anything like that. Rather, from 2006 to 2008, there were a few D&D characters that appeared in the Gen Con program books (which if I recall correctly were no longer mailed out to preregistered attendees at that point, instead only being available on-site). Why the people in charge of writing the program books did this (and have never done it before or since that I know of) isn’t something I ever found out, though for 2007 I suspect it was to celebrate Gen Con’s fortieth anniversary. Given that, perhaps we’ll see a new character in the program book for this year’s fiftieth anniversary?

Either way, here are the characters that have been – up until now – known only to those who attended Gen Con during the following years.

Note that you can click on these for larger versions.

2006: Grixxers

Appearing in the 2006 program book, “Grixxer” is the singular form of the species name, as this race is given both PC information and a monster stat block, along with a brief racial overview.

To be clear, the “name” entry in the upper-left corner appears to be for the individual grixxer illustrated here: Bornek a.k.a. Bob.

 

2007: Di’roc’vespizhi and Mikan

The fortieth anniversary of Gen Con would feature an image of a fearsome red dragon on the cover of the program book. More surprising was that this red dragon, Di’roc’vespizhi,┬áreceived a page with his statistics, showing him to be one of the strongest dragons ever written for D&D! By contrast, the anime mascot Mikan was a low-level character with no optimization to speak of. There’s an interesting contrast between these two characters, though I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not sure what it is…

At a glance, Di’roc’vespizhi’s stats look very similar to those of Tchazzar in the 2006 Dragons of Faerun book. In fact, there are numerous minor differences between them. (Items marked with an asterisk (*) in his stat block are from the 2003 Draconomicon.)

 

Despite the header reading “Updated” Mikan Character Stats, I can’t find any earlier stat block for her.

 

2008: Mikan 4E

In 2008, Mikan would reappear (being the only one of these characters to ever do so), this time with D&D Fourth Edition stats. She’d be absent the following year, however, vanishing as mysteriously as she came…

Notice that she gained a level at some point. And yet stats for her little dragon companion, Shinji, remain notably missing.

 

Bonus: The Mikan Character Book

At some point during one of these Gen Cons (I can’t remember if it was 2007 or 2008, though I suspect the former) I went up to the information booth that was specific for the anime area of the con to ask about the mysterious Mikan who had somehow gotten her stats in the program book. To my complete surprise, the guys manning the booth shoved a short folio into my hands! Explaining that they’d been told to hand copies of it out to whoever asked about Mikan, free of charge, I was left to peruse the tome. Given that I’m posting her character stats here, it seemed worthwhile to do the same for this short book as well.

…wait, does she mention “The Grixxer” on page 15?!

As a note, the studio that created Mikan’s character, Clone Manga, doesn’t seem to have copies of this work for sale anywhere. In fact, they barely acknowledge that Mikan is their character, with the only references to her I can find being some of the images below appearing on their commercial works page (and even then they don’t mention her name). Hopefully, my reposting this in its entirety here is okay.