Review: Dungeons and Dragons Classics Volume 1

I recently reviewed the first volume of the Forgotten Realms Trade Paperback  reprinting by IDW comics which covers the first eight issues of the original comic.  Today I’m reviewing the first volume of Dungeons & Dragons Classics which contains the first eight issues of that comic which was originally published in the late 1980’s.  This comic series is once again placed in the world of Faerûn and starts before the Forgotten Realms books timeline wise.

The first story arc is contained in issues one through four serves to bring the entire party of adventurers together and introduce the main heroes of the comic, but is also serves as the back story for Priam Agrivar, whom you might remember from the Forgotten Realms comic.  Without giving too many spoilers, the history of Priam alluded to within the other comic series is fleshed out in more detail here and we see the adventure which leads him to cliff diving for fun at the beginning of the other comic series.  The other members of the party include iconic race/class combinations such as an Elven wizard named Cybriana from Shadowdale and a female human fighter named Vajra Valmeyjar.  However the other two members of the group introduced in this first story are a bit more quirky than what you might see in a comic based on a newer edition of Dungeons and Dragons.  The first is Timoth Eyesbright, a male centaur fighter and Onyx the Invincible, a dwarven fighter/thief that specializes in throwing darts.  These two characters serve to bring about some interesting situations and inject humor into the story in a way that is reminiscent of 1st edition games and as such they truly add to the overall comic. Continue reading “Review: Dungeons and Dragons Classics Volume 1”

Review: Abolethic Sovereignty Trilogy

The transition from third edition to fourth edition D&D consisted of many changes in the game. For Forgotten Realms the change in editions also heralded changes in the world of Faerûn mostly in the form of the Spellplague.  The story told in the three books of the Abolethic Sovereignty follows a group of adventurers several years after the Spellplague has washed through the land, changing magic and generally disrupting the world.  Raidon Kane is a half-elf monk who spends most of his life hunting aberrations.  As the story begins he is heading home to his daughter after an adventure hunting and fighting these strange creatures when the Spellplague bursts forth and turns his life on its head.

Raidon awakens about ten years later to find Faerûn much changed and that his former life, including his daughter, has been lost.  There is truly no rest for the weary however as Kane soon finds himself embroiled in a fight against those who would awaken the Abolethic Sovereignty and unleash the horrors of the Far Realm upon not only the Forgotten Realms, but all worlds. Continue reading “Review: Abolethic Sovereignty Trilogy”

DnD Player’s Strategy Guide Review

I picked up this 4th edition guide just the other day to see if it could help my game sessions in any way possible.  I haven’t had a chance to use it in a game yet.  It’s not like the strategy guides you normally buy for video games that gives you walkthroughs and holds your hand the whole game giving you spoilers and pointers on where to find all the hidden items.  This guide tells you how to make your D&D sessions more enjoyable by giving you helpful tips on character creation, how to work effectively with your party, how to spot a bad DM, combat tips, and other general information on playing the game better overall.   Read below for more in depth review-y goodness!

DnD Players Strategy Guide
Players Strategy Guide Cover Art by Penny-Arcade's Mike Krahulik

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Dungeons & Dragons: Forgotten Realms Classics Volume 1

This first Trade Paperback collection of original Forgotten Realms comics was released early last year.  For those like myself who didn’t have access to an actual comic store in the late 80s/early 90s when this comic was originally released, this TPB release was fairly exciting.  The first eight issues of the original comic are included within this volume which comprises two separate story arcs.  The first story, “The Hand of Vaprak”, is contained within issues one thru four and the second one, “The Dragonreach Saga” is told in issues five thru eight. Continue reading “Dungeons & Dragons: Forgotten Realms Classics Volume 1”

Locke & Key Volume 1

I’ve been eyeing Locke & Key for months now on the IDW app on my iPad.  The cover art looks interesting and the blurbs sound like something I would like but I’ve mostly just stuck to reading the new Dungeons & Dragons comic available every month.  The town where the main characters of the comic lived is named Lovecraft though and I could only stand not reading this comic for so long.  Over the weekend I found myself buying Volume 1, which contains the first six issues of this comic and was originally released in paper form back in 2008.

I went into the reading with zero preconceptions about what kind of book I was reading.  All I really knew was that there was a tenuous Lovecraft connection and that’s basically what pulled me in.  All six issues are well put together, the characters are three dimensional and the story draws you in from the first page.  The art in these books is amazing, if a bit more gory than I had expected and compliments the writing superbly.  Speaking of the writing, this is where this volume really shines.  The story of the Locke family is interesting and believable even while completely unbelievable things are happening all around them.  I keep wanting to call each issue an episode because it feels more like watching a television show or a movie than reading a comic book.  I was so entranced that I read the entire volume in one setting and overall I was very pleased with the experience and the ending of the arc in the sixth issue. Continue reading “Locke & Key Volume 1”

Book Review: The Sword of Truth Series by Terry Goodkind

If you want a quick read, the Sword of Truth Series by Terry Goodkind is not for you. This series consists of twelve novels, and one novella, and most of the novels clock in at 700-800 pages; they are definitely not meant to be carried around in one’s back pocket. But, that being said, if you have the time and effort to dedicate to reading this series, I think you will find it well worth it.

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Deadly Storm

I will readily admit to being a huge fan of ABC’s show Castle. I really enjoyed the show FireFly back in the day and so when I saw Nathan Fillion was going to be on a new show I gave it a shot and have never looked back. The main character of the show, Richard Castle (Fillion), is an author that works with the NYPD to get an idea of how real homicide detectives work for his books, of which he writes about one per season of the show. What ABC did, which was very smart in my opinion, is actually release the books mentioned in the show as real books. Fans can even go to Richard Castle’s website and see his progress on books and the “cases” (episodes) he is helping to work on. Continue reading “Deadly Storm”

Neverwinter By R.A. Salvatore

Overview

Neverwinter is the second book in the Neverwinter Saga by R.A. Salvatore.  All of the characters from the first book are back and at the center again is Drizzt Do’Urden and his spinning scimitars.  In this book Drizzt and his new traveling companion Dahlia travel around the Neverwinter area ostensibly to track down and remove Sylora Salm from the area.  Before that however they travel around the country side to visit Luskan and stir up trouble there before heading back down towards Neverwinter to have it out with Sylora.  Of course the delay gives their enemies time to work all kinds of mischief and place more obstacles in the way which causes Drizzt and Dahlia to have to fight their way down and makes for a couple of surprising and interesting twists along the way. Continue reading “Neverwinter By R.A. Salvatore”