- While he was clearly human at some point in time, the webcam is often treated as if it were his only physical form, particularly during the arc where he tried to turn it into a robot. We've never seen him in person, and we have no proof of (and not much indication of) his actually residing in Alaska. We do know he can connect to the Internet, so that indicates some sort of "cyber ghost".
Shawn is a woman.
- We have never seen Shawn, and neither has most of the cast. Her real name is Shawna. They either just assume that Shawn has a really high voice or she intentionally keeps it low.
- You know, "Shawn" can be a female name...
- And there are voice-changing programs to simplify the pitch issues...
- One problem with this theory: Shawn was explicitly introduced as having been a part of the group before moving to Alaska. Thusly, the players should be able to confirm Shawn's existence, gender, and appearance. It's only the reader who's kept in the dark.
The government subsidizes Frank to keep Nelson in line.
- Nelson is great at turning any system to his hand in the most ridiculous and destructive way, a talent which does not limit itself to the gaming world. He has defeated at least one actual eldritch abomination (the space card game might bring him up to two). And yet, he never seems to use his skills on any grand scale. Why? Well, he's got an outlet in his gaming. Considering that, it would behoove any government aware of him to maintain such an outlet just by assuring his group never stops. It would explain why we never have any mentions of Frank's work, and why he has the time to make such extensive custom game setups.