James Jacobs (game designer)

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James Jacobs
Born 1972 (age 42–43)[1]
Occupation Game designer
Genre fantasy, horror, occult
Years active 1988–present

James Jacobs is an American designer and author of role-playing games and texts in the fantasy, horror and the occult genres.


Jacobs has been involved in the roleplaying industry since the age of sixteen, when his adventure "Scepter of the Underworld" was published in Dungeon #12 in 1988.[1][2] Jacobs grew up in Point Arena, California, and went to college at the University of California, Davis.[citation needed]

He moved to Seattle after graduating from college and worked his way into Wizards of the Coast's sales department.[citation needed] Jacobs has been the developer, lead designer, and sometimes cartographer on projects for Bastion Press, Green Ronin Publishing, Wizards of the Coast, and Paizo.[2] Jacobs has authored and co-authored several other products for the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy roleplaying game, including Dungeon Master's Guide II, Lords of Madness, Frostburn, and Red Hand of Doom.[3][4] He also wrote Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss with fellow Paizo editor Erik Mona.[4] Jacobs and Erik Mona co-wrote Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk (2007), a 3rd edition D&D remake of Greyhawk Ruins (1990).[5]

Jacobs has worked as the associate editor, and later the managing editor of Dungeon magazine.[2] In the 2000s, Jacobs served as the editor-in-chief of Dungeon magazine, published by Paizo Publishing.[citation needed] Jacobs described himself as "one of the chief architects" of the Dungeon Adventure Paths, in addition to working on all the other adventures published in the magazine.[2] Jacobs became the Editor in Chief for Dungeon magazine in June 2006.[6] Jacobs is the Creative Director for the Pathfinder Adventure Paths-focused monthly publication from Paizo.[2] He also wrote "Burnt Offerings", the adventure featured in Pathfinder: Rise of the Runelords #1.

Among Jacobs' other writings is the "Demonomicon of Iggwilv" feature in Dragon magazine, and he has contributed a number of adventure stories for Dungeon. Jacobs has also created many notable Dungeons & Dragons creatures, with the ulitharid, draknor, and the kaorti among the most prominent.


  1. ^ a b PathfinderWiki entry for James Jacobs
  2. ^ a b c d e Interview with James Jacobs in Kobold Quarterly #12
  3. ^ Berlant, Joseph (September 2004). "Buyers guide", Chronicle 26 (9): 25–29.
  4. ^ a b Pen & Paper listing for James Jacobs
  5. ^ Shannon Appelcline (2011). Designers & Dragons. Mongoose Publishing. p. 25. ISBN 978-1-907702-58-7. 
  6. ^ Paizo press release about James Jacobs becoming Editor-in-Chief of Dungeon

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