Elf Lair Games - The new class of old school!

Welcome to the New Class of Old School!

The Company


Elf Lair Publishing is an "upstart" publisher of unique games and genre fiction. Our original and flagship product, Spellcraft & Swordplay, is available via print-on-demand and e-book download from DriveThruRPG.com and RPGNow (see "DTRPG" link, above) and we have a number of other game products--role playing and "do-it-yourself" board games--in development. Stay tuned.

In addition, we have launched a quarterly literary magazine entitled Shadows & Masks which is in the style of the classic pulps of the late 1800s to mid-1900s and covers just about every genre imaginable, featuring fiction, poetry and articles for those interested in classic and exciting science fiction, swords and sorcery, hardboiled crime stories, cosmic eldritch horror, action, adventure, westerns and more! Check out our publishing page for more information.

We are in some ways tied to the "old school" movement, but we like to think that our product has a much broader appeal, combining modern design philosophy with old-school sensibility. Jason Vey, President and owner, has been freelancing in the RPG industry for over ten years, and has authored for such notable companies as Palladium Books, Misfit Studios, Eden Studios, and Troll Lord Games. Our experience and love for a more open, free style of gaming makes us uniquely qualified to be a leader in what we have termed "The New Class of Old School!"


Elf Lair Publishing began life as Elf Lair Games, almost by accident in 2008. Jason had just become interested in scholarship and study of the original white (or woodgrain) box rules of the First Fantasy RPG. This particular game was an offshoot of an earlier military miniatures wargame which had a "Fantasy Supplement" built in. Much speculation was going on at the time about how exactly the original miniatures game could interface with the RPG--specifically, how one could use the original miniatures rules as a combat system for the RPG.

Jason began putting together notes, thoughts, and ideas, and before he knew it, he had formed the basis for a complete new roleplaying game. Adopting techniques he had learned from writing for various RPG publishers in the field, he proceeded to clean up and reinvent the idea, eventually creating a core system to power his new game that was based entirely on the use of d6's. A game that uses only six-sided dice was not a new idea, but it is an idea that has a great appeal, and by injecting a rules-lite mentality and an effectively unified task resolution--2d6 plus level-dependent bonuses against a sliding target number--and allowing broad character customization, he came up with a role playing game that captures the spirit of the old school while still maintaining a broad appeal to modern gamers. This system, O.R.C.S., or the Oldschool Roleplaying Core System, powers all of Elf Lair Games' products.

When he had finished the game, he dubbed it Spellcraft & Swordplay, and released it on Lulu.com just to see what would happen. He chose his company name, Elf Lair Games, based on his long-used Internet handle, The Grey Elf, and the original name of his website from 1996: The Grey Elf's Lair. Within six months, the game had sold over five hundred copies, with little to no marketing. A sourcebook soon followed, which also sold well. A limited run boxed set was also produced which sold out in pre-sales.

In 2010, graduate school and life in general forced Jason to step back from the company to focus on other matters. Now, however, Elf Lair Publishing has returned, and is now partnered with DriveThruPRG.com to welcome what we hope will be a long and bright future!

The Staff

Jason Vey

Jason Vey has been writing stories as long as he can remember, from superheroes to swords and sorcery to space ships to Gothic horror. Telling tales that evoke emotion in other people is his passion. He is an avid tabletop gamer and began playing Advanced Dungeons & Dragons in 1979 at the tender age of five. He has actually understood role playing games since the age of seven or eight. He has published several books and made contributions in the gaming industry for publishers such as Palladium Books, Eden Studios, Misfit Studios and Troll Lord Games. Fiction, however, is his true love and he always has several ideas waiting for development.

Jason is a lover of science fiction, horror, and fantasy movies, enjoys eclectic tastes in music from show tunes to country western and heavy metal, but 80's metal tops the list. He has celebrated his 29th birthday several times over, and lives in Pittsburgh, PA with his wife Julie and their crazy cats, Seamus and Finnegan. He maintains irregular blogs at http://grey-elf.blogspot.com/ and http://wastedlandsfantasy.blogspot.com/ . He spends too much time on facebook, reading blogs, and at his day job is as an administrative assistant and purchasing/facilities manager, though he does not consider that his career and has completed his Master's in library and information science in hopes of one day corrupting (or, rather, helping to educate) the minds of America's youth.

Elf Lair Games, Spellcraft & Swordplay, Oldschool Roleplaying Core System, O.R.C.S., and the phrase "Powered by O.R.C.S." are copyright © and trademark™ 2008, 2011 and 2016 by Jason Vey and Elf Lair, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Elf Lair Publishing and Elf Lair Games are subsidiary to Elf Lair, LLC.