How Obama Created 'Advanced Death Saves'
Josh Trujillo writes:
Tabletop gaming and politics don't cross paths very often, but that's where Advanced Death Saves began.
Advanced Death Saves is a follow-up to the popular Death Saves: Fallen Heroes of the Kitchen Table. These are 30 stories from various creators about their favorite tabletop RPG characters, and how they got killed off during play. Think The Adventure Zone, but with a deadly bent. If you know what a gelatinous cube is, you're set.
The book appeals to comic fans and hardcore gamers, including an official "Call of Cthulhu" map by Jason Thompson, based on the iconic setting The Haunting. Still, you're probably wondering how the President got involved.
In 2004, editor Josh Trujillo (Love Machines, Adventure Time) wrote a letter to then-President of the United States, Barack Obama, inviting him to celebrate Dungeons & Dragons for the game's 40th anniversary. Trujillo was shocked to receive a response, but sure enough the President wrote back. He politely declined but added:
"The human imagination is still the most powerful tool we have as a people, and fictional words challenge us to think in new ways and to discover different ways to understand each other."
These words put Trujillo on a mission to celebrate the tabletop games ehe had been playing his whole life, and thus Death Saves: Fallen Heroes of the Kitchen Table was born. Featuring dozens of creators, the book told 16 different stories about beloved RPG character who met their unfortunate end. A smash hit in crowdfunding its release, a sequel was bound to happen.
The latest installment, Advanced (A nod to Dungeons & Dragons' follow-up edition) is twice the size of the original. With 30 different stories, the book spans all types of tabletop games, horror, space fantasy, mech combat, and a lot more. It also features work by some excellent talent from all corners of independent comics, including several first time creators:
Tara Madison Avery, Kat Baumann, Mike Bernal, Kevin Budnik, Christopher Baggett, Chris "Chance!" Brown, Matteo Carlarino, Joel Carroll, Kevin Castaniero, Matt Digges, Taylor Esposito, Adrián Bago Gonzalez, Patrick Horvath, Mandy James, Ryan King, Maia Kobabe, Jonathan Lareva, Dave Lartigue, Matias Lazaro, Kristen Lehua, Ryan Little, Mister Loki, Ken Lowery, Katrina Kunstmann, Sarajea Martin, Keith Mclean, Daniel Mercieca, Jill Meyer, Jared Morgan, Paul Milligan, Micah Myers, Jordan T. Neves, Ryan Nichols, Russell Nohelty, Yorrick Pack, Adam Pruett Bill Roundy, Giulie Speziani, Fleur Sciortino, Meggie Ramm, AJ Real, Joseph Nathan Smith, Holly Stanton, Vanessa Stefaniuk, Jason Bradley Thompson, Bryan Timmins, Eli Tripoli, Josh Trujillo, Lonny Unitus, Tim Utsler, and Andrew Otis Weiss.
Advanced Death Saves is now running on Kickstarter through November 9th!