Wednesday, May 29, 2013

RIP Jack Vance

Legendary fantasy and science fiction author Jack Vance has passed away at the age of 96.

Fans of Dungeons and Dragons and role-playing games in general will surely remember him as the inspiration for so-called "Vancian Magic", wherein magic spells, once cast, leave the mind of the caster and must be re-memorized.

However, his contribution to both gaming and the world of science fiction and fantasy writing is enormous both in quantity and quality. He is known for the Dying Earth, yes, but there were many, many more. Lyonesse, Space Opera, the Demon Princes, Planet of Adventure; he wrote more than 60 novels altogether.

I came to appreciate Vance as an author late in life, only a few years ago, but once I started to read his work I couldn't stop, and now can't imagine not having read it.

You will be missed, Mr. Vance.

What should come next?

If you cast your gaze to the upper-left corner of the blog, you'll see a new poll up there, asking opinions as to what you'd like to see next. With the Adventures Dark and Deep™ Bestiary moving into the art stage, I'll have quite a chunk of writing time freed up. I'd like to get your opinion as to how best to fill it up. Nothing's binding, of course, but I'd like to get a sense from you guys.

The first option is something I've talked about before; Adventures Great and Glorious™. It would cover rules for large-scale warfare, large-scale economics, political maneuvering, and dynastic considerations. Intended for use with Adventures Dark and Deep™ but compatible with most OSR-type games, of course.

The second is a full-blown fantasy setting with gorgeous poster maps, a gazetteer-type guidebook, and so forth. Since the World of Greyhawk Fantasy Setting seems to be closed to the gaming public for the foreseeable future (officially, anyway), this would be my attempt at making something similar in concept, but taken to its logical conclusion. Again, it would be lite enough in mechanics to be usable with most OSR-type rules.

The third is a series of smaller adventure modules. Some would have arcs connecting them, some would be location-based adventures that exist more or less in a vacuum, some would be larger and some would be smaller.

And, of course, there are probably a dozen things folks might be interested in that I've not listed here. Feel free to make your suggestions in the comments.

Thanks for your input!

Update: Obviously the polling gadget is the work of the devil, and doesn't function properly. I've seen votes disappear before my very eyes. So just sound off in the comments here. Thanks!