Thursday, May 24, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.144: The Fantastical Art of Jim Pitts

UK artist Jim Pitts has had a long association with the Lovecraftian scene, contributing art to a wide range of Lovecraftian fanzines and professional publications. I received The Fantastical Art of Jim Pitts as a Christmas present, and I must say this is a lovely volume offering a fine retrospective of Mr. Pitts’ art, with a large selection of weird pieces likely to satisfy even the most jaded connoisseur of visual Lovecraftian horror. Nice.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.143: The Forgotten Age

This latest campaign expansion to the Arkham Horror Card Game takes players to the rainforests of southern Mexico to confront a new, horrific threat, with another six smaller scenario packs to follow which will complete the campaign.

I’m intrigued by this, but I’m not sure that the Arkham Horror Card Game is quite hitting the thematic spot for me - I was hoping, after The Dunwich Legacy expansion, more ‘traditional’ Lovecraftian fare involving Innsmouth, Kingsport, and other well-known Lovecraftian locales. I was also hoping, much like the ‘saga’ expansions for Fantasy Flight Games’ Lord of the Rings Card Game (which allow you to play through the entire narrative of both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings novels), that we would see similar expansions for AHCG themed around epic tales such as At the Mountains of Madness. Instead, it seems like the game is firmly located in its own, original Arkham Horror universe, which increasingly feels like a separate entity to the ‘canonical’ Lovecraftian cosmos. Still, this is one of the closest things to a solitaire Lovecaftian rpg experience on the market at the moment, so I shall perservere.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.142: Jungles of K’naanothoa

We return for a final visit to Geoffrey McKinney’s Carcosa, with a brief sojourn in the Jungles of K’naanothoa. Needless to say, McKinney delivers in spades with the high Lovecraftian weirdness, intersecting this creatively with classic Old School AD&D: the cover of the supplement depicts the emergence of Juiblex (a demon lord from the Monster Manual) from an eldritch gate leading the demonc planar abyss as described in the Dungeon Master’s Guide. In any case, the four new Carcosa supplements, combined with the original Lamentations of the Flame Princess edition, now provide a massive Lovecraftian sandbox hexcrawl which should keep you players occupied for some time.

Monday, May 21, 2018

The Lovecaftian Thing a Day (2018) No.141: Tentacle and Tome

This is my latest ‘creation’: a burgundy velvet bookmark which I’m calling the ‘Tentacle and Tome’ bookmark. Nice.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No140: No mask! No mask!

Whilst Lovecraft’s cosmicsm was already firmly developed before he encountered Robert W. Chambers The King in Yellow, that fictional work still had a formative influence on the former writer’s fictive universe; in turn, with the popularisation of Lovecraft, Chambers’ own classic work of ‘Lovecraft-adjacent’ weird fiction has attained wider recognition, with any number of King in Yellow anthologies appearing in recent years (especially in the wake of the hugely-popular Chambers/Lovecaft/Ligotti-influenced True Detective television series, where the issue of masks and unmasking is somewhat central to the plot).

Here, then, is a classic Dave Carson interpretation of the extant fragment of Act 1, Scene 2 of Chambers’ eponymous play, where Camilla confronts The Stranger, precipitatng the apparently sanity-blastng effects of the second Act.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.139: Silver Elder Sign Pendant

Last night, my Silver Key opened up a doorway to the realm of dreams, leading me once more to the little town of Ulthar, where it has long been decreed that no human shall ever be allowed to take the life of a cat. It was twilight as I wandered through the deserted streets, and the only other living soul I  encountered was a great black cat, who was catnapping upon the marble balustrade which circled a quiet fountain in a small secluded courtyard in a northerly quarter of the town.

The slumbering feline opened one eye as I approached, observing me with cool indifference. It nodded slightly at an object which lay upon the cobblestones at the base of the fountain, then arose imperiously and, a moment later, was mysteriously gone from that place.

The object to which the cat had gestured was a small velvet bag, containing a pendant of silver upon which was inscribed the hoary and cryptic Elder Sign - a pendant which, upon awakening, I found hanging from my neck upon a leathern cord.

Friday, May 18, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.138: Eidolon of the Deep

This curious item appeared on my doorstep this morning, with no return address - I possess images similar to it within my sanctum sanctorum - all protected by the most powerful of arcane wards and glyphs of binding; I also know enough of their provenance to recognise that such objets d’art are of an alien design entirely, and the product no human hand.

This particular piece is, I believe, an attempt to replicate in a physical medium the true represenation of one of those monstrous beings of elder lore said to have once walked the earth strange aeons ago, before retreating into a state of dreamless undeath within the depths of the earth, or otherwise entombed within the weed-strewn basalt blocks of some ancient comprised of impossible angles, which long ago sank beneath the waves.

I do not know if there is any significance to the fact that I received this strange eidolon on the day of my fiftieth birthday - but I fear the worst...