Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'black library'.



More search options

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


Forums

  • TGA Community Rules and Announcements
    • New Member Welcome
    • Site Rules and Announcements
    • Feedback
  • The Grand Alliance Community
    • Age of Sigmar Discussions
    • Rules Questions
    • Narrative and Open Play
    • Underworlds
    • Warcry
    • Warhammer Quest
    • International AoS Communities
  • Organised Play
    • Events
    • Gaming Clubs
    • Age of Sigmar Rankings
  • Choose your Alliance
    • Order
    • Chaos
    • Death
    • Destruction
  • The Painting Table
    • Painting and Modelling
    • Gallery
  • Age of Sigmar Online
    • Podcasts
    • YouTube
    • Age of Sigmar Forums
    • Blogs
    • Facebook
    • Twitch
  • Market
  • Devizes & District AoS's General Discussion
  • Devizes & District AoS's Painting & Modelling

Product Groups

  • Dice
  • T-Shirts
  • Bad Dice TGA Events

Blogs

There are no results to display.

There are no results to display.

Calendars

  • Community Calendar
  • Events UK
  • Events Poland
  • Events USA
  • Events New Zealand
  • Events Canada
  • Events Australia
  • Events Singapore
  • Events The Netherlands
  • Events Sweden
  • Events Germany
  • Events Belgium
  • Devizes & District AoS's Calendar

Find results in...

Find results that contain...


Date Created

  • Start

    End


Last Updated

  • Start

    End


Filter by number of...

Joined

  • Start

    End


Group


About Me

Found 15 results

  1. Heard the news today... Guess I'll have to bump Soul Wars to the top of my reading list! this is really sad to hear he left because of creative differences... Hoping the best for him, and I'm sure he'll do well once he finds his feet again. This on top of the price hikes isn't giving me much confidence for the rest of AOS 2020
  2. “Ghyran, Realm of Life, home to the children of Alarielle, cries out in pain. Our once great glades wither under the march of the dead, a blight spreading outwards from the Ancient One’s host with each new moon. At the same time, life abundant seethes in the wake of the Foetid Fellows, the Bilespreader come again to his favourite playground. Our rangers rush to intercept both forces, prayers to the Goddess spilling from their lips even as they fall to the blades of their foes. Still they fight, dancing side-by-side with the dryads and the sylphs, their lives buying just enough time for the rest of the Emerald Eyrie to assemble. Soon, our clarion call will ring through the trees. The cycle of nature is broken. Balance must be restored.” * She emerged from between the trees and her light was like the coming of spring on a cold winter’s morning. Far below, the forest was a patchwork of withered glades and walking dead, but she had only eyes for the abomination sailing towards her on ragged wings and the entourage of monsters flapping in its wake. Here was the architect of the forest’s plight, the one for whom the puppets swarming below staggered and danced. Its unnatural presence rolled across her, a shadow over her soul, and then it crashed into the Green Finger. Rock crumbled. The mountainside shook. The delicate weave of life magic in which she hung rippled, sending shivers down her arms, and for one dizzying moment, she felt the nature of the creature and its blasphemous mount like poison through her veins. The once noble wyrm swung its head to regard her through eyes like amethystine marbles. Staring into them, she saw nothing. Then she was amongst it, the winds become pale flames under her touch, a prayer to the Goddess on her lips as she cast back the fell bats and turned her hands on the soulless monster in the saddle. Once more, the winds lurched. Though she couldn’t hear the creature over the gale, she could see its lips moving, and where her pale fire leapt, bolts of amethyst sprang forth to meet it. The monster’s gaze burned into her until she could not resist it. Her ears filled with the screams of the dying, her hair with the wordless roar of the wind. And the unblinking eyes that stared back at her from that long-dead face did so with the detached curiosity of a mortal about to pin and dissect a butterfly. Read more about Tale of Instahammer
  3. "W'soran woke slowly, reluctantly. Eyelids as thin as parchment peeled back from dull orbs — one a grisly yellow, the other milky white and blind — even as thin, desiccated lips retreated from the thicket of needle fangs that occupied his mouth. The twin leathery slashes that were his nostrils flared, taking in the air instinctively. He smelled the effluvium of age, the cold, harsh stink of rock and the faintest odour of long-ago spilled blood." Here we go, people. As an avid (okay, obsessed) fan of all things Necrarch, this book promised to be the mother lode, exploring the background and lore of our bloodline as seen through the eyes of the father of the Necrarchs himself, W'soran the Wicked: W'soran, one of the first vampires and former pupil of the Great Necromancer Nagash, seeks to unravel the secrets of life and death. But his hunt for power is interrupted by a civil war in Mourkain, the mountain nation ruled by his former ally, Ushoran. Now W'soran must battle old friends and new enemies as he weaves a complex web of treachery and deceit in order to anoint himself the Master of Death... What did I think? How couldn't I love a story that brought both W'soran and perhaps the second-most-infamous Necrarch Melkhior together? As I've already mentioned in earlier reviews, what really captures my imagination and inspires me in Black Library's books isn't the (often generous) fighting or even the grimdark fantasy but the characters and their relationships. W'soran wouldn't be half as interesting without his scheming pupil, and Melkhior might seem motiveless if not for his father-in-death, ordering him about like the lackey he is. "Melkhior jerked back, surprised, his flat, black eyes gleaming in the sudden blaze of light and his monstrous features writhing in consternation. Melkhior looked akin to nothing so much as one of the great bats of the deep dark, squeezed and twisted into a mockery of human shape." Ticking away at the back of the reader's mind is the knowledge we have as gamers and fans of the established background of how this unvoiced conflict plays out. Josh knows this, and his solution is both satisfying and fiendishly in-character — I was cackling when I realised what had happened. Of course, the book also explores W'soran's relationship with his peers and (dare I say) equals in the form of Neferata and Ushoran. The book does a great job of painting that picture, helping the reader to understand, if not justify, W'soran's actions and motives and build up a relationship of their own with him. "Even now, after everything that had happened he still felt it, burning in his gut like a slow poison. The need, not for blood or to feel the life of squirming prey ebb from twitching meat, but for — what? — respect, perhaps? Acknowledgement, certainly; the admission of his superiority by those who dared to call themselves his peers." The story continues on from Neferata and the exploits of Ushoran in Mourkain, so if you enjoyed that one, you'll want to give this a read. My favourite thing about the book? There's a moment, deep beneath the mountains, when Melkhior introduces W'soran to something he has found buried in the dark. I won't quote it as it will spoil that moment for you but the reverence and awe that W'soran experiences, standing in its presence, is quite moving and does justice to a creature so often flaunted in fantasy novels without due respect for its sheer size or majesty. Look out for it. Haven't read it yet? Order a copy, turn down the lights, and dive in... Related read: Am Reading: Neferata: The Blood of Nagash Am Reading: The Rise of Nagash Tales #1: The Withering
  4. They are watching us. From the moment we crossed over into this fecund place in search of it, I knew eyes on me, felt its attention shift, infinitesimal speck by speck, a vast consciousness like the hive mind of a colony of wardroth grubs turning its antlered head our way. Even now, it tracks us through the tumbling vales, and what it sees, it wishes to destroy. It dreams of ending us, of trampling us, of impaling us on those magnificent horns, of returning us to the soil and the wind. The mortal coil! Is this what it feels like, to be studied, to be read? Is this what my subjects experience, when I look for the secrets in their skin? We came for a book, but already I have gained something far greater: wisdom with which to fill a tome of my own! Of course, such a text will warrant the finest materials. A bolt of buckskin shall do nicely. Or, failing that, a ream of aelfhide. I shall weave a placeholder from their hair! Her song holds no sway in these old trees. They stir with a different sound. Stop running, child, and you may just hear it: the wind in the boughs, like the billowing of vast wings; its keening shriek, like that of a beast in pain. You may yet hear it, if you just stop running. You may yet sing with them. Yes, little princeling. Catch your breath and raise your voice and sing with the children of the night, even as they catch you. A choir of screams, in harmony! "Awake, O dead! Crawl from your mountain tombs. Once more, the dispossessed have cause to march upon the forests of the aelves: my cause! No root nor branch nor witch-forged blade will spill your blood this time..." * I hear it then: a tapping, the patter of fleshless fingertips between the stalactites. Overhead, blackness, impenetrable except for that sound and something else, almost inaudible, a keening pitch. Scree scatters before my boots, the darkness a precipice over which I dangle, every step my last. One more. Up ahead, a glimmer of light. One more. The entrance is in sight. One more. They are waiting for me, outside, unpacking the camp by torchlight and the glare of the zephyr spites. One more —Wait. Silence has descended over me like a fresh darkness. What of the tapping? Nothing, just that whine, needling into my ears, growing higher, cutting sharper. The dead wolf’s bite didn’t wound so deep. My groan echoes around me. The blackness swallows it utterly, then spits it back in a scrabble of scratches and the flutter of wing beats. I imagine a mainsail filling over and over with competing winds, impossibly vast in the shadows. Run run run —My every footfall kicks pebbles and stones, glottal pops marking my flight. One more step. A smell washes over me, a rotting tide. One more step. The entrance looms before me, my exit now, and I make out the silhouettes of my comrades, moving about camp. Is that their laughter I hear, or have I gone mad? One more step — * See how quickly they die, how easily they rise again? Necromancy, a written art, its secrets consecrated in blood, His Word made flesh. For the longest time, that was all I saw; runes and languages that sought to confound me even as I learned them. Never did I stop to study that on which they were written. Their medium: human skin, gut for binding, and flesh of a different kind, sprouted from the sodden earth, grown into great forests before being hewn and pulped. That flesh is silent now, but in fair Ghyran, it still sings, the very wind whispering with untold secrets, a shiver down my spine. So I walk that land, and beneath those trees I read again, my fingers teasing stories from the throats of sylphs and the aelves that dance with them, my tongue the sorrow that defines their tales. What more could the undying ask for than that: Nature, a book that never ends! Such a shame that they won’t stop screaming. How is one supposed to read, surrounded by such a racket? Read more about Tale of Instahammer Werble-1C267E295.MP4
  5. “Do you feel it, Neferata? Do you feel the silent angles of the Corpse Geometries growing sharper about you? The charnel mathematics of Usirian have drawn you here...” This week, I Am Reading: Neferata: The Blood of Nagash by Josh Reynolds. The book continues pretty much directly on from The Rise of Nagash trilogy by Mike Lee so of course I got stuck straight in. What did I think? If you’re in thrall of the Queen of Mysteries, this is a must-read, offering a first-person glimpse into the mind and machinations of the First Vampire and her movements post the fall of Lahmia. The narrative focuses on the kingdom of Strigos and weaves Neferata's fate alongside those of Ushoran, W'soran, and (to an extent) Abhorash, as though the four weren't inextricably linked already. The fact that they have found each other again, despite having scattered after the fall of Lahmia, is called out and goes on to set up the theme that all are one with Nagash, symbolised over and over across the book through the black sun and the Crown of Nagash. For me, this is a story about free will and identity. "Neferata pushed herself to her feet. The voice of the crown — Nagash's voice — was back, smashing at her doubts and worries and fears. For an instant, she wondered if this was how others felt when she turned her gaze upon them." Don't let that fool you — there's intrigue and bloodshed aplenty. The rough'n' ready Strigoi warriors offer a satisfying foil to Neferata and her handmaidens. The ladies get their fair share of action, and when their claws are out, Neferata's enemies die. Flashbacks illuminate what happened to Neferata between the sacking of her city and her arrival at Strigos while conveniently introducing us to the origins of each of her closest handmaidens. My favourite thing about the book? Any book or story offering insights into how the First Vampires think and act is a must-read for me. Neferata lives up to her reputation as a manipulator, coercing warlords and sweet-talking the Lord of Masks as though they were chess pieces, but we also see Abhorash and his get (including some familiar faces!), Ushoran and the madness that slowly envelops him and his doomed bloodline, W'soran, hiding in the dark places beneath the mountains like a hungry spider... For acolytes of W’soran, the story also sets up the sequel, Master of Death. (Review coming soon.) Haven't read Neferata: The Blood of Nagash yet? Order a copy, turn down the lights, and dive in...
  6. “Akhmen-hotep, Beloved of the Gods, Priest King of Ka-Sabar and Lord of the Brittle Peaks, woke among his concubines in the hours before dawn and listened to the faint sounds of the great army that surrounded him.” For this week's Am Reading, we take a look at the Warhammer Chronicles trilogy The Rise of Nagash, by Mike Lee. I picked up this collection last year as preparatory reading for my new death-themed army. The background and lore is a huge part of the hobby for me — so much so that I often write entire novels to bring my collections to life — and a series digging into the Great Necromancer and the history of necromancy itself was a no-brainer. It should be said that I also have a long-lived interest in ancient Egypt and the Old World's geographic equivalent, Nehekhara, so the series had a lot going for it before I'd even turned the first page. What did I think? As deep dives into ancient Nehekharan culture, warfare, and religion go, the three novels in this series smash it. From the first few pages, I found myself drawn in by the setting and the details that bring it to life. The Nehekharans genuinely belief their gods fight with them on the battlefield, if only they uphold their covenant and make the ritual sacrifices necessary to invoke them: "Akhmen-hotep and the nobles of the great army gathered by the waters of the oasis, glittering in their martial finery, and offered up sacrifices to the gods. Rare incense was burned to win the favour of Phakth, the god of the sky and bringer of swift justice. Nobles cut their arms and bled upon the sands to placate great Khsar, god of the desert, and beg him to scourge the army of Khemri with his merciless touch. Young bullocks were brought stumbling up to Geheb's stone altar, and their lifeblood was poured out into shining bronze bowls that were then passed among the assembled lords. The nobles drank deep, beseeching the god to lend them his strength." And to all intents and purposes, their gods do fight with them, blessing the many priest kinds and cohorts of Ushabti bodyguard throughout the books with divine gifts befitting each god's realm of power. Having only known ushabti as animated temple constructs built by the Nehekharan's necrotects, it's fascinating (and quite inspiring) to read about the regiments of god-heroes who went on to inspire the creation of those statuary. It's small yet creative liberties like this that really bring the Nehekharan's living culture to life for me, across the first book in particular. Explored across two timelines in the books, Nagash's quest for dominance over all Nehekhara and the priest-kings' campaign against him form the driving force of the story, and I would've loved to read more about the characters we meet over the course of the series, perhaps at expense of some of the battle scenes, of which there are many. As well as the more character-driven parts of the story, I particularly enjoyed the way Lee explores the Nehekharan response to the undead, which is all the more horrifying for their beliefs in the sanctity of death and the afterlife. As a reader, I'm quite familiar with the concept of the undead as a Warhammer army and fantasy trope, but Nagash the Sorcerer offers us a glimpse of a people coming into contact with it for the very first time: "Something heavy crashed against the side of the chariot to the priest king's right [...] A terrible stink emanated from the attacker, and Akhmen-hotep smelled bitter blood and freshly ruptured bowels [...] It was one of the Usurper's tormented soldiers, clad only in a ragged, blood-stained kilt. Its chest was misshapen, having been crushed by the bronze-shod wheel of a chariot, and a spear point had torn open the warrior's cheek [...] Akhmen-hotep choked back a cry of horror. Nagash's unholy powers were far greater than he imagined. The dead rose from the bloodied earth to do his foul bidding!" My favourite thing about the book(s)?The epic trilogy offers a fascinating look at Nagash’s origins and the influences that shaped his rise to power, as well as his relationship with the vampires and all things undead. This is something that Games Workshop really seems to have run with in the Age of Sigmar setting ("All are one with the Great Necromancer") so I found it really interesting to see this theme play out here, so early into Nagash's story. The relationship between my vampire protagonist and his get, and in turn Nagash and my vampire protagonist, is central to the novel I'm currently drafting, and I gobbled up any and all inspiration I found across this series in relation to Nagash's control over the vampires and those touched by necromancy: W'soran made his way towards the king's dais. Hunched, growling figures paced him from the shadows along either side of the hall [...] Of course they served the Undying King [...] Every creature within sight of the great mountain, living or dead, likely bent its knee before Nagash's might. W'soran did so as well, falling onto his knees before the dais. Of course, my favourite character is W’soran. From the moment I learned that he featured as a PoV character in the series, I had ordered the omnibus. Lee does a wonderful job of capturing his character. As you might expect from the progenitor of a bloodline that goes on to become as reviled as the Necrarchs, some of the most affecting descriptions come not from W'soran but those of other characters observing him. (I'd love to share these here but I wouldn't want to spoil anything for you. Let's just say that long before W'soran's physical form one day degenerates into something you might recognise more immediately as a Necrarch now, there are aspects of his characterisation that inspire horror and awe even amongst his vampire lord equals.) If you have any questions about the book or you want to compare good ol' fashioned notes, drop me a message! Haven't read it yet? Order a copy, turn down the lights, and dive in...
  7. I love reading. I love horror. I love Warhammer. You can imagine my face when I 'calmly unwrapped' a present on Christmas morning and found this beauty staring back at me. Black Library's new Warhammer Horror line caught my eye from the very first newsletter, but Maledictions was my first chance to check it out up close. (You should see the size of my TBR pile — now that's horror.) More than anything else, I was intrigued to find out how BL was positioning these stories, in terms of distinguishing them from the hundreds of other, often horrifying, tales set across their various universes. Horror comes in so many flavours already — which of those were BL identifying with, and were they frightening? Interestingly, they went right ahead and called this out in the first sentence of the blurb: Horror is no stranger to the dark worlds of Warhammer. Its very fabric is infested with the arcane, the abnormal and the downright terrifying. From the cold vastness of the 41st millennium to the creeping evil at large in the Mortal Realms, this anthology of short stories explores the sinister side of Warhammer in a way like never before. Psychological torment, visceral horrors, harrowing accounts of the supernatural and the nightmares buried within, this collection brings together a grim host of tales to chill the very blood... With everything from 'psychological torment' and 'visceral horrors' to the 'supernatural' mentioned, I was fully expecting a Quality Street approach the styles and flavours of horror contained within. (Shotgun the purple hazelnut.) Boxing Day was the perfect opportunity to stick the kettle on and sink my teeth into the book. (Anything but more turkey...) What did I think? I wasn't disappointed. The collection opened with a strong entry in 'Nepenthe' by Cassandra Khaw, and my eyes lit up when I read the words 'space hulk' beside one another — a real Ghost of Christmas Past, reminding me of what must have been one of my first impressions of Warhammer as a small child (a time when I saw Genestealers as nothing more than purple space aliens — ignorance is bliss!) True to its word, horror comes in all kinds of varieties, with the distinguishing take (for me) being the emphasis on the character and emotion of more relatable protagonists over the God-level special characters and epic battles we often see in BL's traditional lines. We're looking out at the world through the eyes of widows in small fishing towns and sewer guards lost in the dark, even a young dryad, witnessing the horror of battle for the first time. There are twists aplenty, serving to bring the reader back to the true horrors being explored across the stories, and an attention to the darker side of realms, races, and settings that are perhaps overshadowed by Chaos and Death in the mainstream narrative. "I smashed the collection in a couple of days. Between Christmas dinners, bottles of rum, and an excruciating game of family Monopoly, that says everything it needs to about how much I enjoyed Maledictions." My favourite story? The one that's really stuck in my head is 'A Darksome Place' by BL legend Josh Reynolds. I won't spoil it for you but it ticked a lot of boxes for me — the atmosphere, the mystery, the revelation (which wasn't over-explained, preserving much of the strangeness and wonder while giving just enough away to produce that 'aha!' moment), and some beautifully descriptive writing meant this one planted some firm roots in my mind. If you have any questions about the book or you want to compare good ol' fashioned notes, drop me a message! Haven't read it yet? Order a copy, turn down the lights, and dive in...
  8. “Necromancy, a written art, its secrets consecrated in blood, His Word made flesh. For the longest time, that was all I saw; runes and languages that sought to confound me even as I learned them. Never did I stop to study that on which they were written. "Their medium: human skin, gut for binding, and flesh of a different kind, sprouted from the fecund earth, grown into great forests before being hewn and pulped. That flesh is silent now, but in fair Ghyran, it still sings, the very wind whispering with untold secrets, a shiver down my spine. So I walk that land now, and beneath those trees I read again, my fingers teasing stories from the throats of sylphs, my tongue the sorrow that defines their tales. "What more could the undying ask for than that: Nature, a book that never ends! Such a shame that they won’t stop screaming. How is one supposed to read, surrounded by such a racket?” — Abel, Dark Awakenings Related read: Flash Fiction: A Choir of Screams Flash Fiction: One More Step video-ad666f8faec9489095adf7da21d970dc.MP4
  9. "Her song holds no sway in these old trees. They stir with a different sound. Stop running, child, and you may just hear it: the wind in the boughs, like the billowing of vast wings; its keening shriek, like that of a beast in pain. You may yet hear it, if you just stop running. You may yet sing with them. "Yes, little princeling. Catch your breath and raise your voice and sing with the children of the night, even as they catch you. A choir of screams, in harmony!" Related read: Flash Fiction: One More Step Werble-094F7D401.MP4
  10. One of the reasons why we enjoy playing Age of Sigmar is the rich and vibrant background that the game is set it. However, it can be a bit confusing about which books to start with. @Overread has very kindly complied the following list... And if you want to know about the world that was.... If you have any suggestions for the lists or any books you think people should enjoy or start with, please add a reply to one of these topics!
  11. Anyone else read this yet so? Finished it this morning and feel I can comfortably call this the best AoS novel about. Well worth getting if you’ve not already. Some (lengthy!) scattered thoughts below with spoilers tagged: Structure of book This was interesting! It’s not just a straight novelisation of the events of the Soul Wars box and the battle of Glymmsforge. It stretches back to the necroquake but moreover it largely doesn’t focus on the main players of the box. The Hammers of Sgmar and Malendrek are there but they and their battle are not the central focus. Instead we follow the battle for the Ten Thousand Tombs, a sealed and guarded necropolis in the city, between the Anvils of the Heldenhammer - both the existing Warrior Chamber garrison and the new Sacrosanct Chamber arrivals - and the nighthaunt/zombie forces of the Knight of Shrouds This is a good choice, lets Reynolds dig into his own characters and write the story he wanted without, I suppose, bumping up too much against the ‘main’ plot. Nagash and the nighthaunt Both come off well and are extensively fleshed out (yeah yeah, easiest joke). There’s a lot on Nagash’s philosophy, for want of a better word. ‘Nagash is all and all are one in Nagash’. Everything must be ordered and hierarchical and completely subservient to Nagash’s will for the universe to be sane and correct. No lies, no illusions, just bleak clarity and justice. We hear this from Nagash himself but also from various deathlords and spirits. In their despair and pain they latch onto what he offers. It’s particularly well done in an extended vision-scene between Nagash and In this (self-serving) interpretation, Sigmar is the bringer of false hope, who uses people and tells them it’s for the greater good. It’s compelling, the same stuff we’ve seen in Reynolds’ other work on Nagash. Nagash himself is as good as ever. He can look the chaos gods in the eye and call them horrors or jackals of the waste to their face. He considers himself above them as he is aiming to literally become death the universal force. Not 'a' god of death, not a master of all the underworlds, but something as inherent to the universe as gravity. Arkhan, it has to be said, does have a subtly different take, where Shyish and Azry balance each other out and so Sigmar and Nagash also must do so. A black sun and a bright sun. Less absolutist and with some strong implications for the wider plot. We also get a good look at the sheer variety of the court of the dead. Wights, ancient necromancers, spirits, vampires… both in Nagashizzar and in the army of Glymmsforge, some linked to other AoS books: spot Lots of briefly appearing colourful characters, including Nagash’s personal jester, made to dance and spin so fast before his king on a building-sized throne that bits of him start flying off into the crowd… The Stormcast Interesting developments. We get a good look at Azyrheim, including the most detailed examination of the reforging process and how can go wrong so far. There was a Malign Portents story on this but there’s a lot more of it here. When Sigmar himself shows up, he’s appropriately divine, not just a big magic dude. Slightly alien and unnerving, mind working on a different plain, but still showing a glimmer of the man he once was. Perhaps surprisingly different from your 40k primarchs and emperors. There’s some interesting thoughts on how time and duty are different for folks who die and come back: there’s a bit about a lord-celestant seeing a boy grow up to be a freeguild captain and then grow old, knowing he’ll die soon. There’s a scene where a knight-invocator watches pilgrims ignore her to flock to a statue of her from her pre-reforging life. It’s low on some of the explicit darkness and grittiness that folks seem to be picking up on from the new battletome release but it’s all done well, including the suspicion between the warrior chambers and the sacrosanct chambers; not just ‘why didn’t Sigmar tell us about this?’ but also nervousness about asking members of the Sacrosanct chamber about the reforging process. It’s something mysterious and private and makes them justifiably uncomfortable. Characters Soul Wars seems to have wider range of distinct stormcast characters than most other SC-centric books. They’re three dimensional rather than, say, this guy being the gruff one, this guy being the bloodthirsty one, etc. Balthas, the central lord-arcanum is cold, distant, irritable, scholarly, fairly uncaring of what his men think of him, and easily ticked off when things don’t go according to plan. Balthas isn’t particularly likeable and doesn’t come off as a natural warrior and in that he’s pretty far from other SC protagonists I’ve seen. Calys is tough, professional, forthright and willing to hold a grudge. She’s not a rookie but she’s come to a new duty and seeing her wrestling with that was good. Fun to see her bounce off Balthas too. The same applies to other characters. Ely is the standout, even if she doesn’t quite fulfil the potential she seems to have had in the early chapters. She winds up being a sort of cipher, a representation of what the soul wars are being fought over while still being personally tied to the fighting characters with more screen-time. Her relationship with Calys is pretty telegraphed from the get-go but has resonance despite that. Fosko and the other freeguild characters are fun. They feel like Pratchett’s watchmen. Not actively bad, just supplementing their income through less than legal means. Pharus Thaum is great. Clever, patient, engaged with mortals, tolerant of small children running around his labyrinth, a good teacher and senior officer without being an unnecessary hardass. He's quietly proud of the labyrinth he built, full of traps and architectural techniques to cage unruly spirits; he's much more than a warrior (there's a nice bit where the dwarf engineers scoff at his prowess and note that while he might have planned and designed this impossible maze, they physically built it, manling, so there.?) He knows that eating apples is essentially a small vice, connecting him to his mortal life, but has enough wisdom to know it’s not a big deal as these things go. Unit names An odd thing I noticed was a quirk of ‘unit names’. These don’t match up with what we now know certain stormcast units are called, e.g. Mage-Sacristan instead of Knight-Invocator, Celestors instead of Evocators. I guess you could say these are Anvils of the Heldenhammer-specific terms but I’d say it’s much more like a product of writing a novel while other GW stuff is in development, as with the End Times. Glymmsforge Glymmsforge as a place feels lived in. It comes off as realistic and full of different classes of variously grumbling, scared, just-trying-to-get-by normal humans with their own hopes and dreams, etc. It’s vaguely colonial, as Sigmar’s foothold in Shyish: there’s the Azyrite-Shyisian tension we’ve seen in other books (more subtly here, really) but there’s also hints of deeper, more RL stuff. Relations to the native desert nomads, the use of wandering bands of pretty rough mercenaries as enforcers, Azyrite merchants exploiting the natural resources of the different realms for Azyr’s benefit. The differences between the stormcast garrisons who know the city (and helped found it) and the stormcast crusaders who pass through. It’s cool. Belief is touched on too. There are temples to Alarielle and Malerion and even Nagash-Morr (the friendlier Shyishian aspect of Nagash who ushers the deserving to their peaceful rest) as well as Sigmar. There are occasional purges (zombies, vampires, necromantic cults) and the Lord-Veritant is looked on with a lot more fear than the other SC. There’s a nice scene where he notes that he’s burned down the temple of Nagash-Morr for its subversive potential eight times in a century and every time the priests accept it stoically as another ending then invite him to the first service when they rebuild. Shades of… I dunno, fit your own extremely polite religious minority in an unfriendly state to this.? A certain character’s identity Grand plot implications Thoughts?
  12. Do you want to win this? Tell us at @CombatPhasePodc what story/battle/biography/etc. you want to read about for Age of Sigmar & you’re entered for the 1st of 2 February giveaways as we celebrate 20 years of Black Library! reply here or Facebook or ping us at www.combatphase.com
  13. Not seen this mentioned but for a limited period of time, The Gates of Azyr is free to download from The Black Library. http://www.blacklibrary.com/aos/whaos-novs/gates-of-azyr.html
  14. I'm taking listener questions for an interview tomorrow with Guy Haley, continuing our Combat Phase podcast AoS fiction series with the authors. Any of his works are fine, we are also recording TBA 5: Throneworld for our TBA series but this is the AoS forum:) You can reply here before 18:00 GMT (UK) time tomorrow Wednesday May 4 or tweet me @kennylull
  15. I'll post AoS specific shows here but Combat Phase weekly wargaming podcast has had two BL authors on to discuss their various pieces of fiction out so far, and what's coming. David Annandale on ep 138 and David Guymer ep 135. Also ep 128 Contemporary AoS had guests from two podcasts: Heelahammer and Mortal Realms. Guy Haley will be back on the show in May to discuss his AoS fic. You can listen to the show at www.combatphase.com or also on iTunes.
×
×
  • Create New...