All Sorts of Weird Stuff offers news and information about George R.R. Martin, in particular about his A Song of Ice and Fire series.
"When I was young, I read all sorts of stuff. One week it would be Lovecraft, the next Vance. It was all imaginative literature, or as my dad called it 'Weird Stuff.' It was all 'Weird Stuff.'"
George R.R. Martin
New to the series? Read our spoiler-free review of A Game of Thrones.
Guardians of Order have recently made the Deluxe Limited Edition of their new A Game of Thrones Roleplaying Game available at GenCon. Before that, contributors to the game (such as ourselves) and pre-orderers were given free access to PDFs of the deluxe edition. Now that we’ve finally had some time to look over the finished product, we thought we’d share some of our thoughts.
First, this is a _big_ book. Nearly 600 pages, including a never-before-published interview with GRRM (it was conducted years ago, so it doesn’t contain spoilers of any sort post-ASoS, but it has some interesting questions regarding the writing process) and a large appendix giving Tri-stat for AGoT information. Before that are hundreds of pages about the setting and how the game makes use of the d20 system to create characters and resolve disputes (particularly the martial variety). As you’d expect for this series, magic is of a very low level compared to other RPGs—and we believe that Mark McKinnon, Jesse Scoble, and co. have really captured the flavor of magic as seen through AGoT.
Next, not only is this book big, but it promises to be absolutely beautiful. There are a number of two-page spreads throughout the book, depicting important scenes from the beginning of the first book on towards the very end. The layout is excellent, with some nice heraldic shields custom-made for the various Great Houses (and a few smaller Houses that are given focus). The map is the best one we’ve seen to date, and it pretty much contains all the information you might want from the maps of the North and the South as published in the books (the U.K. and U.S. maps differ to some small degree).
Finally, it’s simply packed full of information about the world, and some of it is entirely brand new—GRRM provided them some bits of history and setting details that have yet to be published. Did you know that Dorne didn’t join the realm until after the first Blackfyre Rebellion? Or that the Moon Pool plays an important role in attaining the status of water dancer? That’s all in there. True, there’s a disclaimer noting that nothing is canon until it’s published in the books, but even if these details were to change before they became canon, they’re a fascinating look into the direction of GRRM’s thoughts on these subjects (and more). We should note that there isn’t a great deal of new information—just tidbits here and there—but for the hardcore fan, or for the person who just has to know everything, this is a good pick. It’s not quite as detailed as the Concordance, but then again, what is?
And there’s an interesting glossary in the back, of just about every named character in the first book. Useful, for fans of the series and for people who want to set a campaign around the time of the books. If you’ve any specific questions, do ask here and we’ll see if we can’t answer them. And if you want to order, try using Amazon.com: Deluxe Edition and Standard Edition (d20). We’ll provide a link to the Tri-stat version (which, from our cursory look, is the more appealing of the two, but we prefer simple mechanics for pen-and-paper RPGs) when it’s available.
The Westeros network consists of several different sites, including a forum and a wiki, for all your A Song of Ice and Fire needs.