Game Designer. Diversity Advocate. Professional Nerd.
In July 2018, Makenzie De Armas played her first game of Dungeons & Dragons. It wasn't anything terribly remarkable—just a simple quest to rescue some children from a band of hobgoblins. Yet, in terribly cliche fashion, that single game would change her life forever.
Beginning with her breakout onto the actual play scene in 2019, Makenzie quickly became one of the fastest emerging creative forces in the online tabletop roleplaying game community. Makenzie has since published multiple best-selling titles on DMs Guild, including the mental health adventure i've been and the ENnie award-winning magical candy supplement Knarl's Candy Compendium. She served as the lead writer for The Islands of Sina Una and co-designer of Matt Colville's Kingdoms & Warfare, and she worked alongside Matthew Mercer to build parts of the Marquesian continent as it appears in Critical Role: Campaign 3.
In 2020, Makenzie graduated with a BFA in Creative Writing from Chapman University and was dubbed the valedictorian of D&D. Since giving her valedictory speech about kicking down doors in the industry, Makenzie has dedicated a majority of her time to fostering a more inclusive and diverse gaming space. She has spoken about her experiences and triumphs as a multiply-marginalized creator on numerous panels at conventions including Game Developers Conference, San Diego Comic Con, and both PAX West and PAX Unplugged.
Now, Makenzie works full-time as a Game Designer for the D&D Studio at Wizards of the Coast. In addition to her game design work, Makenzie also serves as the Education and Advocacy Lead for the Disability Community of Wizards (DCW). Makenzie is a proudly autistic, disabled, Filipina creator, and she happily allows those facets of herself to shine in her work. When she's not working, Makenzie can usually be found practicing stunt lightsaber combat, dying repeatedly in video games, and drinking a concerning amount of caffeine. Sometimes in that order.
Makenzie is currently not accepting any writing or design commissions at this time.
THE ISLANDS OF SINA UNA
The Deck of Many, October 2020
Inspired by the precolonial culture and mythology from across the Philippines, The Islands of Sina Una provides a wealth of new options for players and game masters alike to experience these stories—so frequently forgotten via colonization or lapses in oral tradition—in their 5e campaigns. The book includes a detailed setting guide, two new base classes, twelve subclasses, magic items, spells, monsters, and more. Every choice you make carries the heartbeat of those who came before you. So what role will you choose to play in this world of monsters, mortals, and spirits?