It was during a lecture they probably should have been listening to that Sara Thompson doodled the Dungeons & Dragons Combat Wheelchair on the back of a textbook. They'd been talking about it for a while, the wheelchair, irked by a game that offered players limitless freedom to be whoever they wanted but still struggled to fully represent them. So they did something about it.
A few years later, that Combat Wheelchair add-on for Dungeons & Dragons is on a third edition and has reached right around the world. It got the attention of writers working for D&D maker Wizards of the Coast, inspired bespoke miniature models and was featured by mega-popular Critical Role host Matt Mercer.
That's not all Thompson is known for, though. Thompson is a Witcher encyclopaedia, having been employed to work on the tabletop RPG for R. Talsorian Games. And it was this knowledge which led to a discussion about Geralt of Rivia having a disability, and the discussion went viral, eventually attracting the attention of Witcher Netflix showrunner Lauren Hissrich.
These two events propelled Thompson into the public eye, but they've also been hard at work on a number of tabletop role-playing games, including Pathfinder, Starfinder, Cyberpunk and more. They're someone on the stormy cusp of progress, pushing representation in games forward, and this is their story.
Episode 11 of The New Eurogamer Podcast [since renamed One-to-one] is now available to all, either to listen to or watch in video here, or to stream on any of the major podcasting platforms. Some helpful links follow (if there are any podcasting platforms you use that aren't listed here, or that you can't find The New Eurogamer Podcast on, please let me know and I will sort it).
Meanwhile, Episode 12 of The New Eurogamer Podcast, in which I talk to Sixteen Horses author and No Man's Sky writer Greg Buchanan, is now available to Eurogamer premium supporters, and he has some interesting news to share!