Press Release MERPCON III

Copyright © 2007

OVERVIEW

MerpCon III (Middle-earth Role Playing Convention 2007) is coming this Summer!

MerpCon 3 is the third annual FREE international convention dedicated to fans of J.R.R. Tolkien and those who love to participate in role playing gaming set in J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth. J.R.R. Tolkien is the author of "The Hobbit", "The Lord of the Rings", "The Silmarillion", "The Children of Hurin" and many other works. The event is open to role playing gamers, and non-gamers who wish to learn more about Tolkien and his works.

If you have read the books or seen the movies, and wished you could adventure in the imaginary world of Middle-earth, now is your chance! For three days during the last weekend of July, you can roam across the long shorelines, gorgeous valleys, towering mountains, and deep underground caverns that make up the land of Middle-earth.

Details and updates are maintained as the website: http://www.merpcon.org

Please RSVP online at: http://rsvp.merpcon.org

For additional questions, Email: webmaster@merpcon.org

Phone: (509) 481-5437

LOCATION & DATES

Come to Spokane, Washington, USA for great guest speakers, activities and fun adventures this July 27th, 28th, and 29th. The event is taking place in the "Kung Fu For Life" school ( http://www.spokanekungfu.com ) located on 127 East Mission Avenue by the intersection of Mission and Ruby. Map:

FREE EVENT!

MerpCon is a 100% free, non-commercial event run by volunteers, and is not endorsed by Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate.

MANY REASONS TO ATTEND

This year's event is exceptional. We have multiple special guest speakers including featured guest speaker Doctor Thomas Morwinsky, and returning guest speakers Professor Chris Seeman, as well as an address by Hawke Robinson. There will be other persons of note attending as well. These include Michael Martinez, Joe Mandala and other "celebrities" of Tolkien fan fame.

Additionally a number of unique opportunities will be available only at MerpCon. This includes unique first time in print new modules, rules books, autographed modules, buy/sell/trade new and out of print books, prizes and the printed and bound first issue of a new magazine dedicated to role playing gaming in J.R.R. Tolkien's universe "Other Minds Magazine".

Continue reading for the rest of the details...

GUEST SPEAKERS DETAILS

THOMAS MORWINSKY

Dr. Thomas Morwinsky is author of a number of adventures and magazine contributions set in Middle-earth. He is also the designer of several wonderful large-scale, highly detailed maps set in Tolkien's imaginary universe, including the most detailed large-scale map of J.R.R. Tolkien's N˙menor ever made.

Dr. Morwinsky was born in 1967. He graduated with a PhD in entomology in 2002. He has been working for the German government's armed forces as the government's entomologist since 2003. He has been married since 2004. He first began role-playing in Middle-earth in 1987. He was a GM (Game Master) for MERP/RM (Middle-earth Role Playing / Role Master) in Middle-earth from 1988 to around 1999. He contributed more than half a dozen works to the the Middle-earth role playing gaming magazine "Other Hands", from 1999 to 2001.He is co-editor of the new "Other Minds" Magazine.

His contributions to "Other Hands" included:

  • "Inland Sea" maps in issue #25 (April 1999)
  • "Taurinafanto" in issue #27 (October 1999)
  • "The History of Monut Gundabad" in issue #28 (January 2000)
  • "An Alternative Continental Map for MERP" in issue 29/30 (July 2000)
  • Map for "Tol Fuin and the Shadowy Isles" in issues #31/32 (January 2001)
  • Supplement "Armies of Eriador" in issue 33/34 (July 2001)

Other works he has contributed to the Middle-earth role playing gaming community include:

  • "Population and Urbanization in Eriador" an online PDF
  • "Inland Sea" map
  • "N˙menor" map

He will be flying in all the way from Germany to the US just for the chance to speak at this event on Saturday, July 28th at 6:00 pm (and get in a little gaming time of course).

CHRIS SEEMAN

Professor Seeman was guest speaker for MerpCon I, and will be one of the guest speakers at MerpCon III as well. He will also be co-GMing, and possibly even lead-GMing a session using his favored RuneQuest system (now in re-issue) adapted for use in Middle-earth.

Chris Seeman was running games set in JRR Tolkien's world long before ICE (Iron Crown Enterprises) began producing the MERP (Middle-earth Role-playing) series.

In 1992 he established "Other Hands: The International Journal of Middle-earth Gaming", which he published on a quarterly basis until 2001. He has edited and contributed to several of ICE's MERP modules, as well as some of the more recent Lord of the Rings RPG products by Decipher. He has also been co-editor and author for "The Guild Companion' eZine and many content submissions there. He manages The Tolkien Music List http://www.tolkien-music.com. Chris holds a Ph.D. in Near Eastern Religions from the University of California at Berkeley.

He was/is also co-editor and co-author of a number of ICE modules in the 1990's and and in the 2000's for Decipher's LOTR RPG, including:

  • For MERP
  • Kin-strife (1995)
  • Southern Gondor: The Land (1996)
  • Southern Gondor: The People (1996)
  • The Northern Waste (1997)
  • Hands of the Healer (1997)
  • For Decipher's LOTR RPG (Lord of the Rings role-playing game)
  • Fell Beasts and Wondrous Magic (2003)
  • Moria (2003)

In the "real world", he teaches as a professor in religious studies at a liberal arts college in Iowa. He is a noted Tolkien scholar in gaming circles.

MICHAEL MARTINEZ

Mr. Martinez was guest speaker at MerpCon II, and also participated as a player in all of the gaming sessions. He will be participating in the gaming sessions at MerpCon III as well.

Michael Martinez is the published author of:

  • Visualizing Middle-earth
  • Parma Endorion: Essays on Middle-earth, 3rd Edition.
  • Understanding Middle-earth, published by Vivisphere in 2003.

From Mr. Martinez's website at http:// www.michael-martinez.com:

"Recognized around the world as one of the leading authorities on the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, Michael Martinez has shared his knowledge and insights on Middle-earth with other fans in the online world for many years. His books and essays have been translated into Polish, Spanish, Italian, Hungarian, Greek, Hebrew, Portuguese, and Finnish. But though he is best known for his research into Tolkien's chief literary creation, this versatile author has garnered respect and acknowledgment in more than one field.

Most of Michael's early professional career was devoted to the family of Business Basic programming languages which were developed for mini-computers in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and then ported to UNIX and PC operating systems in the 1980s. A former employee of Basis International, one of the leading vendors of Business Basic, Michael has written numerous technical papers and articles on programming techniques and methodologies. He has worked as a consultant, IT manager, programmer, and teacher for many companies.

You can view a list of his works and contributing works at http://www.michael-martinez.com/articles-and-essays.html "

HAWKE ROBINSON

Hawke has been role playing since 1979 and a regular Game Master since 1984. He is has role played with dozens of game systems in countless campaign worlds, but his favorite setting is in Middle-earth, using various game systems since 1984. He has been an RPGA member since 1984 and he created and ran two annual RPGA conventions in 1985 and 1986 when only 15 & 16 years old. He created a BBS (Bulletin Board System) supporting role playing gaming, and Tolkien fans in 1994.

Hawke took over what is now the merp@merp.com email list from Mario M. Butter (silent-tower.org) in the late 1990's. He founded Merp.com ( http://www.merp.com ) in the 1990's before handing it over to be run by the international volunteer community. He has created a series of rulebooks known as Eń d20 ( http://www.ead20.com ), adapting D&D 3.5 (Dungeons & Dragons) rules for play in Middle-earth. He has founded the Numenor Project ( http://www.numenorproject.com ). He is the founder and organizer of MerpCon ( http://www.merpcon.org ). He is founder and co-editor of the new magazine "Other Minds" ( http://othermindszine.org ) dedicated to role playing gaming in J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth. He has published a number of essays on J.R.R. Tolkien specifically and on Role Playing Gaming in general.

In the "real world" Hawke is a retired computer scientist & analyst who is married and raising their three sons. Meanwhile he is volunteering & studying as a Recreation & Music Therapist working with special needs children. He is organizing the first Deaf Role Playing Gaming Group in the greater Spokane area, and he is working on a 10+ year research project on "The Therapeutic Aspects of Role Playing Gaming" ( http://www.rpgresearch.com ).

A PLETHORA OF GAME SYSTEMS FOR MIDDLE-EARTH

This year's MerpCon will be using many different game systems, rather than the usual ICE MERP/Rolemaster combination. We will have 3 different game masters at this year's event. This year will have game sessions with the following RPG game systems:

  • Decipher LotR
  • ICE MERP 2nd Edition
  • ICE Rolemaster/MERP hybrid adapted to Middle-earth
  • ICE HARP adapted to Middle-earth
  • D&D 3.5 adapted to Middle-earth (Ea d20)
  • Runequest adapted to Middle-earth
  • Middle-earth Wargaming session

If you are in any way a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien and Middle-earth, or even just generally enjoy fantasy literature, you will not want to miss this unique event.

So set your schedule for this FREE event on July 27th, 28th, & 29th, and come to MerpCon III this year. There is limited seating available, and you must RSVP for any events you wish to participate in. Please visit http://www.merpcon.org for more information and to register today. If you do not have Internet access, you may call the USA number at: (509) 481-5437.

SOME EXCLUSIVE FIRSTS ONLY AVAILABLE AT MERPCON III

Several items will only be available to those who attend MerpCon III. These include (but not limited to):

  • The first release of "Other Minds Magazine" in print, with autographs.
  • The long awaited release in print of the Eń d20 core rule book "Eń d20 Races & Cultures.
  • The first in print release of "Escape From Numenor" the MerpCon I campaign.
  • Autographed books, modules and magazines from other publications by some of the authors and publishers themselves.
  • Trade, buy, sell various Middle-earthg gaming and Tolkien books during the Middle-earth "swap meet" section of the event.

So don't miss this year's MerpCon. It is bound to be the best Middle-earth role playing convention ever!

http://www.merpcon.org