In honour of Random Acts of Publicity Week, I’ve decided to provide some links to my favourite books, games and authors. Check them out, you may discover some really cool stuff.
– Let’s begin with Spider Robinson, one of my favourite authors of all time. His writing in general and his Callahan books in particular, informed a lot of my attitudes towards matters of equality and equanimity. I cannot recommend Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon enough, but track down Mindkiller, as well as the Stardance trilogy he co-wrote with his late wife, Jeanne Robinson. Even if you don’t agree with everything he says, you may just find yourself enjoying the way he says it.
– And onto Charles de Lint, the author who was my introduction to the world of urban fantasy. Before reading his novel Moonheart I had assumed that fantasy was firmly the province of made-up worlds filled with heroes and strange monsters. Thanks to Mr. de Lint I know our world has heroes and strange monsters, too.
– Another of my favourite authors, though I discovered him later in my fantasy lit gestation, is Guy Gavriel Kay. While he is best known for his Fionavar Tapestry trilogy, a wonderful blend of urban and high fantasy, he has also written a number of individual fantasy novels with the feel of historical fiction. I recommend any of those works; Mr. Kay can do more with a single book than many authors manage with a trilogy or two.
– Moving away from literature and onto gaming. Monte Cook has been my second favourite game author and designer even before he helped create the d20 version of Dungeons & Dragons. Since then he has clinched that spot with Ptolus and Dungeonaday.com (now looked after by Super Genius Games). Getting to meet him was one of the high-points of my game-geek career, no question.
– So if the truly awesome Monte Cook is my second favourite, who is my favourite? None other than the Canadian creator of The Forgotten Realms, Ed Greenwood of course! The Forgotten Realms is my favourite published D&D campaign world; I’ve been in gamer-love with it since its inception in the pages of Dragon magazine. I am angling to meet Mr. Greenwood soon, having just missed him the last time I was at Gen Con.
– Table-top RPGs have long been my geek passion, and D&D was at the forefront of that for many years. Owing, however, to my various disagreements with the design of D&D 4E, the Pathfinder RPG became my new game de jour. Besides the “D&D 3.75” aspect of the rules reboot, I have fallen in love with Golarion, the world that became the Pathfinder RPG’s default setting. It is every bit as vibrant and mysterious as The Forgotten Realms were to me, and tops the list of my favourite published campaign worlds. Add to that the fact that I respect Paizo’s attitude towards its fans a lot more than I do WotC/Hasbro’s, and I don’t think I’m ever going back to D&D. If you ever want to check out the Pathfinder RPG, just drop me a line…
– We’ll end on a not-so-guilty pleasure, a little game I like to call Kobolds Ate My Baby! (mostly because that is what it is called). It is an utterly ridiculous, loud and fun “beer and pretzels” game, wherein you play kobolds out to find the only food that matters: delicious babies! Along the way, hilarity and carnage ensue. If you can track down a copy, do it! It is the perfect game for combining alcohol and friends.
That’s it for now. Have any links you’d like to share, or comments on the above? Put them below…