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George Vasilakos

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
George Vasilakos
Born
United States
NationalityAmerican
Occupation(s)Art director, businessperson
Children3

George Vasilakos is president and art director of Eden Studios, Inc., and manages the company's daily operations.[1]

Early life[edit]

As a youth living in Colonie, New York, Vasilakos was a comic book collector who estimated that he had around 3500 comics as of 1986.[2]

New Millenium Entertainment[edit]

After finishing art school, George Vasilakos opened a store called Imagination Games & Comics in Albany, New York in 1992 that provided table space to play games.[3]: 340  Several role-playing gamers started to frequent the store, one of them the attorney M. Alexander Jurkat. Vasilakos and this circle of gamers went to Gencon together, where they were impressed by the new collectible card game (CCG) Magic: The Gathering. Five members of the group, including Vasilakos and Jurkat, decided to publish their own CCG and formed New Millenium Entertainment (NME), with Vasilakos as the art director.[4]

Their first product, released in 1995, was Battlelords CCG. Although the game initially sold well, the company printed too many copies, and the resultant production and storage bills for the unsold stock started to weigh on the company's finances.

Attempting to diversify, NME looked for a role-playing game to publish, and came across a small press game called Conspiracy X, which was thematically based on the then-popular television show The X Files. Working with the game's original writers, Rick Ernst, Shirley Madewell and Chris Pallace, NME fleshed out the rules and produced a 224-page softcover book in 1996.[5] The game proved popular, but sales revenues were not enough to save NME.

Eden Studios[edit]

Increasing debt forced NME out of business, and Vasilakos closed Imagination Games & Comics in June 1997. The following month, Vasilakos and Jurkat joined with investor Ed Healy to announce that they had started Eden Studios with Vasilakos working for the company full-time,[3]: 340  and they had acquired the rights to continue the Conspiracy X line.[6]

Vasilakos and Jurkat were fans of the work done by C.J. Carella, and in July 1998 they announced an exclusive license to the WitchCraft and Armageddon role-playing games by Carella, previously published by small-press roleplaying publisher Myrmidon Press.[3]: 340 

Last Unicorn Games[edit]

In 1999, Last Unicorn Games offered Vasilakos the position of art director, so he moved to California to work in their office, while still remaining president of Eden Studios.[3]: 341  Vasilakos retained the position of art director when Last Unicorn was bought by Wizards of the Coast in 2000, and then bought by Decipher, Inc. in 2001.[4]

During this time, Vasilakos and Christopher Shy entered the zombie role-playing market, creating All Flesh Must Be Eaten in 2000.[3]: 341 

At Decipher, Vasilakos worked on the Star Trek and Lord of the Rings RPGs.[4] Vasilakos directed all the graphics work on the Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Army of Darkness roleplaying game lines for Eden Studios.[4]

In 2003, Vasilakos opened another game store in Albany, New York called Zombie Planet.[7][8][3]: 342  Vasilakos used edenstudios.net as a website for Zombie Planet, to sell adventure games.[9] By 2021, Vasilakos had gotten Zombie Planet its own website.[10] But that site has become abandoned as of 2024.[11] Vasilakos offered curbside service during the COVID-19 pandemic because customers could not enter the Zombie Planet store.[12]

In 2012, Vasilakos appeared on a gaming panel at Gencon discussing "Zombies in Gaming."[13] In 2016, he helped graphic artist Francis Hogan develop the kid-friendly RPG Adventure Maximus.[14]

Vasilakos was the inspiration behind the Abduction and Knights of the Dinner Table: HACK! card games.[4]

Personal life[edit]

Vasilakos lives in Loudonville, New York with his wife and two sons, Theo and Dimitri and daughter Sophia.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Higgins, Dan (2004-11-27). "Zombies Give Franchise Bite". Times Union. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.
  2. ^ Thurman, Ken (1986-11-09). "Comic-Book Fans Convene Today's Young Sophisticates Want Complex Plots". Times Union. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Shannon Appelcline (2011). Designers & Dragons. Mongoose Publishing. ISBN 978-1-907702-58-7.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Vasilakos, George (2007). "Vampire: The Masquerade". In Lowder, James (ed.). Hobby Games: The 100 Best. Green Ronin Publishing. pp. 348–351. ISBN 978-1-932442-96-0.
  5. ^ Swan, Rick (August 1996). "Roleplaying Reviews". Dragon. No. 232. pp. 106–108.
  6. ^ Varney, Allen (October 1997). "The Current Clack". Dragon. Vol. 22, no. 3 #240. p. 119. Retrieved 2024-02-18 – via Internet Archive.
  7. ^ Tollerton, Jackson (2023-02-04). "Local Business Spotlight: Zombie Planet". Nippertown. Retrieved 2024-02-17.
  8. ^ Levith, Will (2020-02-10). "5 Super Capital Region Comic Book Stores". Saratoga Living. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.
  9. ^ Cetawayo, Ameerah (2009-09-28). "Board games win out in recession". The Daily Gazette. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.
  10. ^ Appelcline, Shannon (2013-05-07). "Designers & Dragons: The Column #25: The Top Rpgs of 2012". RPGnet. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.
  11. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20240224035027/https://www.rpg.net/columns/designers-and-dragons/www.zombie-planet.com
  12. ^ Williams, Michael (2020-05-19). "Capital Region Businesses Prepare to Reopen". Times Union. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.
  13. ^ Hite, Kenneth (2012-10-07). "RPPR Presentys: Zombies in Gaming Panel at Gencon 2012". RPPR: Role Playing Public Radio. Retrieved 2024-02-17.
  14. ^ Roiter, Andrew (2013-05-23). "Ready for an Adventure?". Bennington Banner. Archived from the original on 2024-02-18. Retrieved 2024-02-18.