Phenomenon crew & writers

Ok returnees, District Superintendent Morph will now introduce the organisers and writers of Phenomenon 2016 games and activities!

Buy them lots of drinks at post-Con drinkies.

Staff (the Orgs)

Game Writers

Reunion Activity Organisers this year are:

Triptychs and Diptychs

Sandra d'Argeavel

Sandra d'Argeavel has been hanging around Pheno since 1998, mostly through a love of costuming and being married to a previous Pheno president, Ryan. Sandra's previous games have had the common theme of her love for the 80's (even though her last freeform, A Weekend in the Country co-written with David James, was set in the 1880's). "Don't you forget about me" is her first Triptych game, again with an 80's twist, but don't let the big hair fool you, this game isn't about the party.

Game: Don't you forget about me


Xole Karman

Xole (that's pronounced 'Kole') has been writing games since the early nineties. She likes heavy inter-personal politics and deep characterisation. Her favourite settings are Amber, Fading Suns, and Marvel superheroes, and given enough gin, she will talk for hours about mythology, feminism, and fictional metaphysics. This is her fourth game dealing with Greek myth.

Game: Caryatides


Tina Ryan

Who is the mysterious Tina Ryan?

Game: Building Home


Barbara Kearins

Barb ran her first St Tyrants over 19 years ago at a convention in Sydney with a recently born baby in tow. Despite that experience, she has continued to write games for conventions. Barb's more recent games include Up-time Girl (co-written with Stuart Barrow), and Positions Vacant.

Game: Race for the Throne


Greg Tannahill

Greg Tannahill is an experienced Canberra based GM who has been running original scenarios at Australian conventions for years now. His most recent games include The King In Winter (Pheno 2015, as part of the Triptych), The Glorious Disaster of President-For-Life Saturday (Arcanacon 2015), The Day Before The Dragon (Pheno 2014), and The Survivalist (Arcanacon 2014). He is also the writer of the high-octane actionstrocity Sharkscraper!, for which he refuses to apologise.

Game: Let Them Eat


New Students

Nathan Lee

Nathan Lee is a 22 year old currently studying Creative Writing at the University of Canberra, having branched into Psychology, Media Production, and Law studies. An avid watcher and reader of the Horror genre, he is particularly interested in the works of H. P. Lovecraft and China Mieville. Relatively new to the world of Tabletop Role-Playing Games, has been playing and running games of various systems for three years.

Game: The Horror at Haberman Hotel


Honoured Alumni

Mark Bruckard

Long-time GM, Mark has run many, many games for many, many people, including the Koutougakku High School freeform. He is currently sneaking off from familiar duties to collaborate on this and other random projects.

Game: In Remembrance of the King

Also assisting with game: The Wizard on the Coast


Ryan d'Argeavel

Ryan runs games. Ryan runs cons. Ryan runs the house of crap. See Ryan run. Run, Ryan, run!

Game: Tranquillity Springs


Marissa Harris

Generally lurking in the more Cthuloid end of the RPG pool, Marissa occasionally surfaces to run other sorts of games. Now that her spawn are getting old enough to roleplay, her sights are increasingly turning towards sharing some of the classics with those who haven't encountered them yet.

Game: The Wizard on the Coast


Michael Hitchens

Michael has been attending roleplaying conventions for over twenty years (ouch) and writing for them for almost as long. He has written 22 convention modules, including Tender Prey (Sydcon 1993), Dead but Dreaming (Necronomicon 1994), The Rain like Dust (Sydcon 1996), The Loyalty of Men (SAGA 1994 and Necronomicon 1998), Bridge of Dawn (Phenomenon 1994 and Macquariecon 1995), Silver, Tears and Ashes (Phenomenon 1999) and You are #4, I am #6 (a Triptych at Phenomenon 2000). Am I Here? (Phenomenon 2008) Floodland (a Triptych at Phenomenon 2010), A Strange Day (Phenomenon 2012), The Room (Eyecon 2014) and Leviathan (a Triptych at Phenomenon 2015)

Game: Mourning Sun


John Hughes

John Hughes has been active on the Australian convention circuit as a writer, con organiser, publisher and low SAN dreamer since the world's first freeforms in 1983. He is a pioneer of the Australian systemless tradition, where the inner story is always in balance with the outer. John has produced over fifty modules for publication or convention play, writes game material and fiction for a variety of games, and dabbles in 3D game illustration. His recent Pheno modules include Quest: Mask of Heroes, Kwaidan, Gaze, Xenomorph, and Dark. John's roleplaying website is

Game: The Turn of Midnight Waters


Pip Hughes

Pip Hughes has been playing and writing roleplaying games for more than thirty years. She started reading science fiction when, at the age of ten, her father tossed an Isaac Asimov novel to her. Pip then tried to write her own, but at that age you have the attention span of a newt. She found, however, that building a story with other people is both far easier and far more enjoyable. Ah, roleplaying… she hasn't stopped since. Pip's recent Pheno games include Kwaidan, Gaze, Xenomorph, and Dark. Someday, she will get back to writing that science fiction novel.

Game: The Turn of Midnight Waters


David James

David is quite sure that Pheno is merely yet another dastardly ploy to keep him at Daramalan. (Those damn banks wanting the mortgage actually paid back...) Apparently his game this year is the freeform you write when you've told yourself that you're taking a year off.

Game: In Remembrance of the King


Luke Jordan

Luke Jordan has been roleplaying for 12 years now and despite the continued gentle mockery of his family and friends shows no signs of stopping. He has been running dramatic roleplaying adventures a professional DM at Aeoncademy's Vala program since 2009 and is now working with them the Project Manager of their writing studio, Vala Games. His interests outside of roleplaying revolve around the study of culture, history, myth and legend, and literature, and his games tend to reflect this. His first convention game was a Victorian(-Gothic)/Lovecraftian pastiche that won Best New Designer in 2014; his second was a Mythic Irish vision-quest through the Otherworld for five exiles and oathbreakers.

Game: A Road to Somewhere


Random Jones

Random Jones accidentally started roleplaying the morning after a drunken night out during university and has never been able to escape ever since. Originally from Brisbane, he moved to Melbourne a number of years ago so he'd have a wider pool of victims for his crazy imagination. He has written and run games at a number of Arcanacons, Conquests and Unicons in Melbourne, and previously at Pheno. He would like to apologise for the confusion.

Games: Unions and Intersections and How to Win Friend and Influence Sophonts


Jon Lowe

Jon never wanted to be a Pheno Organiser. Jon always wanted to be a Zoo Keeper. When he met the organising committee he realised that he could have both careers at the same time.

Game: 'Hotel California' or Five Adventurers walk into a Bar


Nick Matthews

Nick Matthews has been attending Phenomenon for far longer than doctors recommend. His first game was 2012's Antiques Roadshow of Doom with Stu Barrow, an experience that failed to warn him off this terrible course. 2015's Last Night on the Mountain was his first solo writing experience, and this year he's trying something a little more light hearted. Still has ghosts, though.

Game: Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead


Joe McNamara

Joe McNamara was waiting at the crossroads at midnight when he was asked to run something for Pheno. You might have played his previous World of Darkness games.

Game: Tragedia Rusticana


Mike Walker

Mike prefers running and playing in games that focus on deep characterisation and are low in game mechanics, such as the Amber Diceless RPG. Mike has been writing for Phenomenon since 1997, including two triptychs. He is a dedicated Buffy fan, and wrote the Diptych Breakfast Slayer Club in 2014.

Game: Slayercon



Assistant GMS

For the times when the writer's ambition exceeds their capacity for time travel and teleportation. When a freeform is just too big or there are more players than sessions. When that happens, GMs call in the cavalry.

David Hollingworth

David Hollingworth has been writing Star Trek games for fifteen years, and, apparently, is still not sick of people making fun of him for being a giant nerd. Most recently, he co-wrote a Fading Suns freeform with Xole Karman and Andrew Smith (no, not *that* one, the other one), and a fair-to-middle attempt to dramatise WW2 history as a gritty sci-fi game. He's a writer by trade, which likely means less than you think it does when it comes to actually writing games.

Assisting with game: Caryatides


Andrew Smith

Andrew has cowrote and run a lot of freeforms for Pheno over the years, including last year's Bloodrunner and A Game of Suns in 2013. He has been a fan of Changeling: the Dreaming since its first release in 1995. But that's enough about him. Let's talk about you.

Assisting with game: Caryatides