Momiji Award Winner
At the age of 24, Detroit, Michigan native, Kevin Siembieda, launched his role-playing game company with three thousand dollars and a dream. Four years later, in 1985, the up-and-coming RPG designer snagged the license for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles®. A year later, he acquired the rightsto another favorite TV series, Robotech®. Both games were smash hits and helped to make Palladium Books a leader in the RPG industry.
Over the next 15 years, the Robotech® RPG and many sourcebooks would delight and thrill gamers and fans of the television series alike. In 1990, Palladium Books addedMacross II to its roster of role-playing games. In the mid-1990s, Palladium Books let the anime licenses go to focus on other RPG projects, but the love for Robotech® remained. As a result, when the opportunity to renew the Robotech® license manifested in 2005, Kevin jumped at the chance to do Robotech® again. With a new generation of gamers, fans and the (then new)Robotech® Shadow Chronicles® about to be released, Kevindecided to relaunch the Robotech® RPG series with Shadow Chronicles as the lead-in setting, followed by the classicMacross® Saga, Masters Saga™ and New Generation™.Kevin and his new battery of writers and artists approachedRobotech® as if they had never seen the series before, to give the new Robotech® RPG series a fresh new look and feel. Fans have loved it.
What many people do not know is that Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books played a role in launching the early days of anime in North America. In 1989, Kevin Siembieda acquired the rights to release Robotech® II: The Sentinels®, Robotech® Southern Cross™ and Robotech® New Generation™ for the very first time on VHS cassette and uncut. It was a gamble, as the anime industry was just starting, but Palladium’s Robotech® anime releases on videocassette were a huge success. A couple years later, Robotech® creator, Carl Macek, outbid Palladium on the license, and he went on to do much more with Robotech® on videocassette, laser disc and other areas. KevinSiembieda turned his attention back to creating role-playing games and expanding the world of his own blockbuster RPG setting, Rifts®.
Rifts® RPG, released in 1990, was Kevin Siembieda’s own, original concept. A post-apocalyptic world in which the elements of science fiction, fantasy, horror, the supernatural and dimensional travel were all melded together to create an epic Megaverse® of adventure. Rifts®, exploded onto the gaming scene, its initial press run of 10,000 copies selling out in three weeks. Rifts® has gone on to become Palladium’s best selling game, with more than 100 sourcebooks, plus miniatures, art prints, posters, T-shirts, mugs, a graphic novel and other products.
In 2002, Rifts® was optioned for film by the Walt Disney Company for development as a live action movie by Jerry Bruckheimer, who continues to search for the right screenplay.
Kevin Siembieda has been at the helm of Palladium Books for 32 years. He has written or co-authored more than 180 RPG books, has spoken about world-building on the campus ofBlizzard Entertainment and continues to breathe life into new RPG products. Claiming to be the helpless victim of an overactive imagination, he says he has ideas for several hundred more books and games to come.
Coming in 2013, Robotech® RPG Tactics™ is Palladium’s biggest and most ambitious Robotech® project in decades: a series of Robotech® RPG tactical games andexpansion sets that utilize gorgeous 1/285th scale game pieces. Over time, all of the classic Robotech® mecha (and spaceships) from every era of Robotech®, starting with Robotech® RPG Tactics™: Defense of Macross Island™, will be made available. To make this game line everything a Robotech® fan could want, Kevin Siembieda has hired some of the best miniature game designers, sculptors and creators in the business. He hopes to have a number of examples of Robotech® game pieces on display for Anime North at the Palladium Books booth. Kevin is happy to talk about his plans forRobotech® games and other projects.
Other notable role-playing games created or co-created byKevin Siembieda and published by Palladium Books® includeTeenage Mutant Ninja Turtles® RPG, Heroes Unlimited™, The Mechanoids®, The Palladium Fantasy RPG®, Beyond the Supernatural™, Dead Reign™ (the zombie apocalypse) and of course, Rifts®, among others. He hopes to license many of these intellectual properties for development into videogames, television, film, comic books and other markets in the future.