Friday, July 4, 2014

Old Hats

Old hat perhaps, but in case you missed it, Tower of the Hand's solar has had a discussion about The Legacy of the Children in which I also had a few words to say (admittedly few compared to the others). An even better read if you're interested in how one can link A Song of Ice and Fire to Joseph Campbell's well-known "hero's journey" (I actually bought Campbell's works on this stuff back when I was a Star Wars buff, because that saga is always very often used as an example of how Campbell's theories work; but I never finished it - too dry - and I had recently discovered this book called A Game of Thrones) ... deep breath... is The Hero with a Thousand Faces and One, also on Tower of the Hand.

This week I've found time to read a little further in Mark Lawrence's King of Thorns (sequel to Prince of Thorns) and every time I wonder why the heck am I not just devouring it and be done with it, because this is pretty damn good stuff! An impressive collection of one-liners in an unusual story so cracking it blows most other fantasy novels away, which is quite impressive considering these were Lawrence's first books. The covers imply generic stuff, but it's anything but. Closest comparison is Joe Abercrombie I guess, but there's a dash of Martin in there too, and a whole lot of Lawrence himself; or rather, Jorg's (the main character). If you thought Ser Jaime Lannister was a scumbag in the beginning of Thrones, wait until you meet Honorous Jorg in Prince of Thorns. The positive reviews at Amazon are, for once, mostly spot on. Lawrence takes the whole cruelty/misery/grit one step further, though, so be warned.

I'm also trying my hardest to avoid buying Divinity: Original Sin which everybody is heralding as the best computer RPG since Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn. I want to believe that. Have a feeling it is good, too, but it's rather expensive and, you know, I have realized it's been thirteen or fourteen years since I actually had the time to complete a game (with one exception, Legend of Grimrock, which I digested in nice little chunks at the expense of all other hobbies and activities for a while). 

The news that there finally is a good CRPG again (and by CRPG I am thinking the stats-heavy, dialogue-heavy type, not the Diablo III bash-em-all type) made me think how wonderful it would have been with a proper CRPG based on A Song of Ice and Fire, preferably on the ASOIAF RPG from Green Ronin itself. That would have been nice. Not a game where your character is predetermined, but a game in which you construct a character from the ground up. Or even an entire House, using the excellent and fun Green Ronin rules system. 

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