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Shadis issue 48.jpg
Front cover of Shadis issue #48, June, 1998.
PublisherAlderac Entertainment Group
FounderJolly Blackburn
Year founded1990
Final issue1998

Shadis was an independent gaming magazine published by Alderac Entertainment Group (AEG), and published articles on role-playing games.

Publication history[edit]

Started by Jolly Blackburn,[1] it began as an independent gaming fanzine in 1990, and was later transformed into a quality small-press magazine in 1993. In late 1994, the magazine received its biggest success by making available random Magic: The Gathering cards at a time when booster packs of the card game were scarce, causing many players of the game to buy multiple issues of the magazine in hopes of getting a rare or out-of-print card.

Shadis "went on hiatus" in 1998, and effectively ceased publication.[2] In a 2000 interview at the Gaming Outpost web site, John Zinser, the owner of AEG, said that he wanted the in debt company to grow at a faster pace than Jolly Blackburn was comfortable with. Hence, a split was agreed upon, with Jolly Blackburn leaving with the rights to Knights of the Dinner Table and a few other properties.[3]


Each issue contained a variety of articles covering many different aspects of role-playing game systems and genres. The series included game reviews, adventures, fiction, maps, gaming advice, and cartoons.[4]

The magazine was a three-time Origins Award winner, and is also notable for featuring the first appearance of the long-running RPG comic strip, Knights of the Dinner Table.[1] This strip was initially intended to fill a blank spot in the magazine, but later took on a life of its own.[5]

In drawing lessons from this magazine, Wolfgang Baur, the editor-in-chief of Kobold Quarterly, thought it was a mistake for Shadis to rely too heavily on content that was not focused on fantasy in general and Dungeons & Dragons in particular.[6]


  1. ^ a b Varney, Allen (November 1998). "ProFiles: Jolly Blackburn". Dragon. Renton, Washington: Wizards of the Coast (253): 120.
  2. ^ Panzeri Jr., Peter F. (2006-07-01). "32nd Hall of Fame Inductees Announced" (PDF). Talsorian. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-02-12. Retrieved 2008-12-04.
  3. ^ "Interview: John Zinser". Gaming Outpost. 2000. Archived from the original on 2011-08-25. Retrieved 2012-08-08.
  4. ^ Rundquist, Thomas J., ed. (2000). "The other games magazines, part two". Substitute Teacher Survival Activities. Nova Media Inc. 1: 59. ISBN 188423951X.
  5. ^ "Jolly Blackburn". Chicago Comic Con. Wizard World. Retrieved 2012-08-08.
  6. ^ Baichtal, John. "Enter the Kobold". Geek Dad. Wired. Retrieved 2012-08-08.

External links[edit]