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DnD and Pathfinder veteran raising funds for cancer treatment

Owen K.C. Stephens, a prolific tabletop RPG designer, who's worked on DnD, Pathfinder and many other games, is raising money for his cancer treatment.

Tabletop RPG designer Owen K.C. Stephens

Owen K.C. Stephens, a prolific DnD and tabletop RPG designer, is raising funds to pay for his cancer treatment via crowdfunding platform GoFundMe. Already, 600 fans and friends have provided donations and raised a pretty substantial $38,000, but there’s plenty of distance still to go to reach the campaign’s final goal of $150,000.

With decades of experience in the industry, Stephens has bylines in practically every tabletop RPG system you could care to name. He’s the co-creator of Starfinder, and has worked on official content for four different DnD editions and both versions of Pathfinder. Stephens was previously on Paizo’s team, but currently works as a freelance game designer.

From Call of Cthulhu to Gamma World, from The Song of Ice and Fire to Wheel of Time – whatever your favorite RPG, chances are you’ll find official work for it by Stephens.

Stephens is also a six-time ENnie winner – again and again taking home the award celebrating excellence in RPG design. Categories he’s won ENnies for include best RPG monster (for authoring Pathfinder’s Advanced Bestiary 2), and best setting (for Kobold Press’ Southlands Campaign setting) to name just a couple.

Tabletop RPG designer Owen K.C. Stephens receiving treatment for cancer

Stephens’ story, detailed on his GoFundMe page, will be a familiar one to anyone with even the most basic knowledge of the US healthcare system.

A freelancer with no medical insurance, Stephens has to cover his expensive medical costs himself and he says the care he’s received so far has “drained my savings dry, and left me in ever-growing debt.” To make matters worse, as he puts it “if I can’t work, I can’t make money”.

Despite detailing the unpleasant and exhausting trials of radiation therapy, the updates Stephens has provided on his campaign page display incredible good humor. He describes the fight against cancer in fantasy RPG terms, calling it a monster he must kill, and describing the Linear Accelerator as a machine that produces “unholy fire” to defeat it.

You can find Owen K.C. Stephens GoFundMe page here.