After the Bomb

Missed Tuesday again. So here's a game supplement from my collection.

The 80s.  It was a good time for table top role playing games.  The success of Dungeons and Dragons mission to corrupt the youth of America with it's satanic message was undeniable.  Soon everybody needed a role playing game.  Ghostbusters, Robotech, I even had modules for Star Frontiers based on the movies 2001 and 2010.  Which seemed like a super cool idea until I realized it would be really boring.

At the same time an underground black and white comic, which was mostly a parody Daredevil, was taking the country by storm.  It was the Teenage Mutant Teenage Turtles and they had a role playing game.  Of course they did.  You could make your very own mutant animal and do battle with the forces of evil!  I spent many a fine hour with my friends Brian and Suleiman - smiting enemies with submachine guns. Good times.  This was all before the cartoon started and the TMNT became the pale shadow they are now.

Another feature of the 80s was that we were all pretty sure we weren't going to be seeing the 90s.  Nuclear hell-fire was coming and the world was going to be a glowing ruin.  The RPGs of the time reflected it - Paranoia, Twilight 2000, Aftermath! and the daddy of them all Gamma World.  Not to be out done TMNT RPG had After the Bomb.  Really the mutant animal thing was really just waiting for this treatment.

I never did get to play a game in this setting.  I did, however, plan plenty of games and read the hell out of this book.  Like all the TMNT RPG books it's filled with great art by Kevin Eastman.  Not to mention it's awesome wrap around cover.


Lean Times In Lankhmar

Lean Times In Lankhmar Copyright 1996 Borealis Legends

Artwork Copyright Mike Mignola

My first exposure to Fritz Leiber's characters Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser was actually through the Advanced Dungeons and Dragons supplement, Deities and Demigods.  The original version had several mythos that were later removed for copyright reasons and Fritz Leiber's creations was one of them.  Some of the creatures just fascinated me -  ghouls with green transparent skin so all you can see is their skeletons, the wizards Ningauble of the Seven Eyes and Sheelba of the Eyeless Face, etc.

Fafhrd is a hulking northern barbarian with wild red hair and beard.  The Gray Mouser is a slightly built and cunning child of the city streets.  Through fortune they find themselves allied in common cause in the crowded city of Lankhmar.  That cause, of course, being themselves.

I'm sorry to say that I didn't actually get my hands on any of the stories until Mike Mignola did a comic book version in 1991.  I was now fully hooked on the barbarian and his sneaky companion.  I fell in love with Mignola's art the first time I laid eyes on Hellboy and it lent itself so well to the mean streets of Lankhmar.

When White Wolf published this edition of Lean Times in Lankhmar with a cover by Mike Mignola I absolutely had to own it and all the other collections in the series.

I'm pretty sure I've got those comics in box here somewhere...


Red Wall

 It has been over twenty years since I read Red Wall by Brian Jacques.  You can see those years on the cover of this copy.  I only ever read it the once but it's been bumped around a lot and been through many moves.

It is a fun book and remarkably accurate in it's depiction of life in a medieval abbey, despite the fact that all the characters are anthropomorphized animals.  The abbey of Redwall is a good place to live.  Various 'nice' rodents species live together in harmony. "Nice" being things like mice, rabbits, otters and so on.  One day a band of bandits consisting of 'bad' rodents shows ups - rats, weasels, etc.  Being an abbey the residents of Redwall are not very well prepared to hold off the bandits.  So it falls to Matthias, a hapless apprentice, to fulfill a prophecy by recovering the weapons of a great hero of the past.  Finally he must confront Cluny the Scourge, the one eyed bilge rat who leads the horde.

The cover of redwall has changed over time but I think I like this one best.  Not just because it was my first but because it evokes the flavor of the setting so well.

One of the things about this project is that I keep finding artifacts in these old books I haven't looked at in ages.  For instance I found this old bus transfer.  Turns out it's been nearly twenty four years since I read this.