Smack dab in the middle of our homepage is a video player showing a DnD character design WIP (work in progress). We’ll be meeting the person responsible—storyboard artist, character designer and animator Teddy Jones—shortly, but for now let’s talk about the stars of the show: the Boyz.
I’ve mentioned several times in various places on this site what really brought TCC into existence and it was the need for affordable, accommodating and readily available enemy minis for my D&D combat encounters. The easiest, most fun solution was gummy candy, preferably shaped into fun creature designs. From the moment I introduced them into my games they were a hit. That soon got me to thinking: what if there was fantasy-themed gummy candy specifically designed for fantasy-themed ttrpg combat encounters? I’m the kind that relishes the opportunity to bring a vision into fruition, so I started brainstorming the idea of manufacturing my own gummy figures and making them commercially available. My first question, of course, concerned which creatures I would choose.
As most of you interested in a website of this nature probably already know, among the most common lower level monsters that appear in typical fantasy-themed tabletop role playing campaigns are the goblinoids: goblins, hobgoblins and bugbears. Starter adventures are filthy with them. They’re full of rotten personality and love to ambush player characters when they’re otherwise minding their own business. The term “goblin” also sounded fun to eat – since we use our gobs to do such a thing. And who wouldn’t cackle with impish delight when presented with a bag of little goblin gummies to devour? And why stop at just goblins? Let’s include their goblinoid cousins and make it a trio of shapes!
We started sketching our dnd character design with only a scant grasp of what type of design would translate well into gummy molds. It was a fun exercise, but I wanted something a little more polished than we were capable of doing. Also, the more I started thinking about the races of goblinoids and their lore-established relationship to one another, I started seeing a comic-style connection between them. Goblins are cranky little bastards that tend to get pushed up front in battle and are seen by even one another as disposable cowards. Hobgoblins are a good deal smarter, and tend to draw up tactics and fight with more sophisticated weaponry. Bugbears are the largest of the three, and prefer to leave the thinking to others as they wallop their way towards getting what they want. Perfect. Once we found names for them–Errl (goblin), Hobz (hobgoblin), and Fern (bugbear)—I started imagining them as business partners running a company where their character dynamics could play out in classic, contentious glory. Thus, the appraisal, pawnshop and adventuring firm of Bentnail, Cutwell & Blandspark was incorporated.
Soon after, I began creating comic strips full of chucklesome scenarios and figuring out a way to blend their business venture into mine. To help, I needed a representation of the characters that could really sell the concept. I immediately turned to my friend and frequent project partner, Teddy Jones, for help. True to her enthusiastic nature, she quickly obliged. The results of her dnd character design so far have been absolutely amazing. Her characters are consistently and adorably full of personality and pathos and she always seems to effortlessly understand exactly what the project needs. We continue to refine the Boyz and as you can see from the homepage, they are gradually coming into their own in what will soon be an animated commercial for our products that even in its unfinished stage thrills me to no end. And since the ttrpg community is so full of creatives, I thought it might be fun to watch it develop together. Over time, the animation will evolve until at last the full commercial will be revealed.
As mentioned, if we find that enough folks like the idea of fantasy-themed gummies for ttrpgs, we’ll continue to develop new characters for trios of other monsters. If we’re lucky, we’ll have more animations and more commercials and who knows how big we’ll be allowed to think? For now, we’re excited about our stands, our Boyz and how they will enhance your games to make them exciting and fun in ways maybe you haven’t yet considered.
Happy gaming, gummying and goblinoiding.