Joined: Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:42 pm
Ways has very kindly let me repost something I've put up on the OD&D Discussion boards here. Anyone fancy playing?
ONCE UPON A TIME…
Back in the dim and distant days of role-playing, when AD&D was only beginning to stir and things were still by and large left to the imaginations of individual players and DMs, the older Loremasters amongst you may recall that Miniature Figurines Ltd produced a range of 25mm fantasy figures under the title of VALLEY OF THE FOUR WINDS, designed by Dick Higgs and released in 1978. There was nothing generic or vanilla about these figures; a very unique and quite terrifying world was emerging from Mr Higgs’ fevered imagination, owing more to the works of Hieronymous Bosch and Pieter Bruegel than J.R.R. Tolkien or Robert E. Howard, but no story to back it – just a set of bizarre figures and your own imagination to fill in the blanks. (Which the much younger me promptly started to do.)
A story WAS duly forthcoming a short time later in 1979, published in the pages of the early issues of WHITE DWARF magazine – issues 8 -13 if I recall aright. The pen name ‘Rowland Flynn’ apparently disguised the writing of David Langford, aided and abetted by Ian Livingstone and Steve Jackson, the driving forces behind Games Workshop at that time. It was a diverting enough read, again with a flavour all its own. A year later a VALLEY OF THE FOUR WINDS board game designed by Lewis Pulsipher was released by Games Workshop. And there, it seems, the story ends. No further development was forthcoming, although the figures remain something of a cult hit and many of them can still be purchased from Minifigs to this day.
Where’s all this heading? Well, it’s that matter of ‘flavour’ again, and the flavour of VFW is distinctive and quite addictive, given enough time and pondering, and I believe a unique flavour makes for the best D&D. This world is pretty unique in my opinion and, I think, possibly worth exploring a little more.
I’ve therefore had the idea of running an OD&D campaign in the VALLEY OF THE FOUR WINDS setting. It will be based on the ideas inspired by the original figures and the subsequent story, but won’t be ruled by either. In the spirit of OD&D I have a few tweaks and add-ons of my own I’d like to incorporate.
So the call goes forth, bold adventurers. Who will join me in my journey across the Stonefinger Mountains?
Who will look upon the shining towers and elegant plazas of the good city of Farrondil?
Who will walk with me in the mist-drenched, witch-haunted depths of Greengorm Forest?
Who will dare the depthless, trackless hell of the Southern marshes, home to the alien, pitiless, unfathomable Swamp Lords?
And who, if any, will dare to pass beyond Black’s Bridge and walk the accursed Plain of Darkness, where it is said a mere footfall will unleash the doom of Men, and the tolling of a black bell will raise the countless withered bones of the restless dead to take a terrible revenge upon the living?
Sound like fun? I’m looking for approximately 4 – 6+ players to give this a go. Please post expressions of interest below and we’ll take it from there.
A chill wind blows from the East. The VALLEY OF THE FOUR WINDS awaits…