Interesting Comic – Lake of Fire

I’m reading a new comic at present specifically because it has an Ars Magica feel – Lake of Fire. I’ve waiting for the trade paperback version because reading the smaller issues is really irritating, I prefer to binge on comic and TV stories.

The story synopsis is:

It is 1220 AD, and the gears of the Albigensian Crusade grind on. When an alien spacecraft infested with a horde of bloodthirsty predators crash-lands in the remote wilderness of the French Pyrenees, a small band of crusaders and a Cathar heretic are all that stand between God’s Kingdom and Hell on Earth.

Yeah you read that right; Aliens and Crusaders. It’s awesome so far.

cover of Lake of Fire issue, with crusaders

Well.

Sub Rosa Issue 9 review

The Ars Magica magazine Sub Rosa has been regularly published for many years, and through that time the contributors have assisted in the creation of many new ideas into the game system.

Issue 9 was released on Feb 3 and it is a great read for Ars Magica fans. I agree with the blurb from the mag’s website:

“Emerging from the Winter cold, Sub Rosa #9 is here with 68 pages of content, including bonus material for the recently released The Cradle and the Crescent.

We offer up beasts, jinn, sahir, companions, and all manner of juicy details to expand your stories in the Mythic Middle East, straight from the designers and playtester Jason Brennan.

We’ve also got articles on a pious Companion knight, over 30 mythic texts and Gerald Wylie’s Storyguide’s Handbook offers up great advice for simplifying covenant creation!…(cont)”

Overall: Sub Rosa is well worth the money, full of material that either has a direct application to Ars Magica games, or is fascinating reading / fluff which will expand your appreciation of the setting and scope.

I plan on buying every issue. Issue 9 is one of the best I’ve seen.

Quick Review: If you purchased the Cradle and Crescent sourcebook you should also purchase this issue. There is so much material in this issue which directly relates to that source book, and expands on that book that it is an absolute no-brainer. The mag authors have stated openly that much of the material is information that could not fit within the published book, and so its like getting a USD$5 expansion to the book.

The mag is always high quality, well presented, and has regular contributors who are the authors of the source material. So Sub Rosa is generally almost as good as the source material itself.

It is clearly a work of a passionate dedicated team, who take the quality of the material very seriously. I’ve read a few issues now and I find something in each issue to use in my Ars Magica games.

Continue reading

Enjoying the DeathWatch

My regular Melbourne roleplaying group started playing the Warhammer Fantasy games a longwhile back, and our current GM is somebody who loves to try new systems, especially those which hook into our other interestes, and have great lore attached.

Thus I came across DeathWatch by Fantasy Flight Games.

Here is a quick review of the DeathWatch RPG game based upon the games played so far.

It is a highly addictive and compelling game model, that removes the need for detailed backstory and allows a drop in, start shooting approach. This is excellent, and something that I would not have though would work had it been suggested to me. Plain honest fun.

The core lore (sometimes called fluff by the tabletop gamers) is so darn deep it is almost impossible to be an expert on any of it, yet somehow as a player you adjust and enjoy. The game lore itself has been altered over the years, and it is an ever expanding base of content, driven by the tabletop players (when they do retcon lore adjustments which are still plausible, but the game themes themselves allow for it is just a wonder circular loop).

In short: play it. Its excellent.

DeathWatch Book Cover