Wednesday, 19 July 2017

The Port of Peril Collector's Edition

Ever since the new Scholastic Fighting Fantasy covers were revealed, fans have been wondering what the special collector's edition of Ian Livingstone's The Port of Peril - featuring brand new cover art by Iain McCaig, no less - will look like.

Well wonder no more...


Ian L worked with Iain M to compose the cover and it depicts a scene from the adventure when YOU enter the infamous Black Lobster tavern. If the pirate in the bottom right-hand corner looks familiar, that's because it's Mungo, from Island of the Lizard King!

You can pre-order your copy of the limited collector's edition of The Port of Peril here.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone signing at Forbidden Planet

August 2017 sees the 35th Anniversary of the first publication of the very first Fighting Fantasy gamebook, the iconic The Warlock of Firetop Mountain by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone.

To mark this occasion, Steve and Ian will be signing at the Forbidden Planet London Megastore on Friday 4th August from 6:00pm – 7:00pm.

Ian will be signing his first new Fighting Fantasy title in five years - and his first fantasy adventure in twelve years! - The Port of Peril. In this brand new addition to the multi-million-selling books, YOU must travel across Allansia, from Darkwood Forest to Port Blacksand, on a dangerous quest!

Both Ian and Steve will be signing the 35th Anniversary re-releases of the first five titles of the original series.

So put the date in your diary and we'll see you there!


Sunday, 16 July 2017

The Legendary Adventurer's Backpack

There are now less than 7 weeks to go until Fighting Fantasy Fest 2, on Saturday 2nd September 2017!

Tickets will remain on sale until 8:00am on the morning of the event, one hour before doors open, but please remember, entry is only with a pre-purchased ticket. There will not be any ticket sales on the door.

The Adventurer's Backpacks, however, will not be on sale so long, because we need to get t-shirts made and for you to choose which size you would like.

As well as the t-shirt and the event-exclusive bag itself, the Adventurer's Backpack also includes an event-exclusive lanyard and tag, an A4 art print, and a Balthus Dire miniature made by Otherworld Miniatures.


Don't forget, if you are in or around Ealing on the night of Friday 1st September, why not come around to You Are The Beer-O: Stout of the Pit, the regular meet-up for FF fans hosted by James Aukett, and join us for the world's first ever Fighting Fantasy pub quiz?

You can buy your ticket for the pub quiz here, through Eventbrite, which is also where you can pre-order your Adventurer's Backpack.

Please note that, while Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 is suitable for all ages, the pub quiz is for over 18s only.

Friday, 14 July 2017

The Second Swordsman – 'We’re not on Titan anymore (Toto)'

This week it's time for the sixth in Malcolm Garcia's Second Swordsman series. Enjoy!


The Second Swordsman – 'We’re not on Titan anymore (Toto)'

By Malcolm Garcia

After coming so very close to succeeding in my first FIGHTING FANTASY adventure by arbitrarily choosing every second option (in Battleblade Warrior) I decided to attempt a trio of adventures which, while starting on the familiar world of Titan, soon cast the adventurer far away into places hitherto unknown.

In Spectral Stalkers, Portal of Evil and Phantoms of Fear YOU start as an adventurer on the continent of Khul. I’d previously only visited Khul when attempting Seas of Blood and was looking forward to exploring more of the land-based perils. Spectral and Portal start off in the south-west of the continent, near the town of Neuburg and were both written by Peter Darvill-Evans (his other addition to the FIGHTING FANTASY range being Beneath Nightmare Castle, which is actually set in Neuburg). Phantoms is set in north-east Khul and was written by Robin Waterfield, who also penned Masks of Mayhem and Deathmoor (which I’ll attempt if I can ever get my hands on a copy without having to sell a kidney).

In Spectral I started off with impressive SKILL and LUCK scores, but my STAMINA was not so great and I had only two meals and a small amount of gold. But none of this would be of any consequence as choosing every second option proved to be a particularly foolish process to use in this adventure. At the very start YOU are whisked away from Khul after coming into possession of a magical artifact that is being sought by the eponymous Spectral Stalkers. But from the very beginning of Spectral I had no idea about what I should be doing or where I should be going. While this was initially intriguing, it soon gave way to a feeling of helplessness.

I bumbled through the Library of Limbo (ignoring advice from a dragon librarian) and, despite several opportunities to do otherwise, failed to learn anything useful about the world I was in or my quest. I managed to ignore so many things in Spectral that I didn’t even have a single battle in the whole adventure. (The only other time this happened was in Island of the Lizard King – where I died within four choices of the start). I also never once got to Test my Luck. I got the feeling in Spectral that I made a poor choice near the start which would have otherwise led to me gathering some important knowledge and objects. What killed me in the end was suitably anticlimactic – it wasn’t a horrible trap or a fiendish beast, but a moat of acid. Even Deathtrap Dungeon provided some imaginative expanding fungus to finish me off.

Giving southwestern Khul (and Peter Darvill-Evans) the benefit of the doubt, I returned there to explore the mystery of the Portal of Evil. This adventure is set in the wilderness between the cities of Zagoula and Neuburg, but the eponymous portal promised to whisk me far away from all of this, if I could survive long enough to find it. Which I didn’t. It all started so very well, with decent SKILL and STAMINA scores (and a joke in the introduction about lawyers being akin to thieves). But then I adopted a passive approach that is all-too-familiar when choosing every second option. While I did get to fight my first ever FIGHTING FANTASY dinosaur, the battle was over before I could kill it, I also failed to help a talking dinosaur, didn’t search a body of a foe I’d killed, and even ignored a shiny thing hidden in a tree. Surely everybody knows that on Titan adventures can succeed based solely on the possession of shiny things!

I also, in a manner similar to Spectral, had the feeling that I made a poor choice early in Portal. There were several times at relatively early stages of my quest where I was asked if I had certain specific objects I’d yet to come across – a ring of zombie warding, a warrant from the Margrave, and even some gold coins. This happened often enough to make me believe I had missed out on an important chunk of the adventure by following the Second Swordsman process. In another disappointment, my failure in Portal was brought about by being captured by a group of soldiers. While this isn’t my biggest failure, I’d put it on par with my fate in Trial of Champions.

And so then I travelled far, to the north-east of Khul and the Affen Forest to become a Forest Elf and learn from a dream that I needed to defeat a Demon Prince. In Phantoms dreams are an important part of the adventure; you learn things through them, and at later stages of your quest you can alternate between the real world and the dream world. The illustrations by Ian Miller (who did the covers for several FIGHTING FANTASY novels but only did the internals once) enrich the nightmarish atmosphere of the adventure which, for the most part, gave me a sense of being worn down by despair.

My initial SKILL, STAMINA, and LUCK scores were reasonable (but not great), and Phantoms added a POWER score which gave the ability to cast spells. Unlike Spectral, from the beginning of my adventure I knew where I needed to go, and I fought plenty of creatures along the way – sixteen in total. Several of these battles were made more difficult by imposed losses of SKILL (I’m looking at you Fog Devil and everything I faced after breathing in the evil mist). I also had several battles where there were a few too many unlucky rolls of the dice (against the Wolves – who almost killed me – and a Komodo Lizard). But I was saved from an early defeat in Phantoms by my own food scavenging skills, and choosing the potion of strength at the start of the adventure. What didn’t help me was anyone at all. There were no friendly witches, merchants or fellow adventurers to give me any advice or special objects; I was on my own from the very beginning.

After making my way through the depressing part of the forest, that had been blighted by the evil of the Demon Prince, I finally entered their underground lair and gained the ability to control my shifting between the real and dream worlds. Rather than do this at every opportunity I made the decision to do it every second time it was offered. The two worlds are parallel to each other – a path you take in one will move you forward in the other. But soon after my first attempt at changing into the dream world, my real world body was attacked and I had to change again to complete the fight. Then, on my second opportunity to enter the dream world, I had to fight a mirror image of myself, a fight that somewhat arbitrarily took the shape of a series of random dice rolls, of which I lost way too many and was killed.


All in all these three adventures were a rather unsuccessful attempt to find success away from the familiar world of Titan. I never reached the portal in Portal, I entered the dream world only fleetingly in Phantoms and, while I went far away in Spectral, I never knew what I was trying to do when I got there. But I was intrigued by the world I visited in Spectral, and the depressing atmosphere of Phantoms meant I’d visit both of these FIGHTING FANTASY adventures again one day.


Thank you, once agin, to Malcolm, for another Second Swordsman blog post. If you have any suggestions for items for the official Fighting Fantasy blog don't forget to get in touch via mail@fightingfantasy.com.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Ian Livingstone's Freeway Fighter #3 released today!

Issue #3 of Ian Livingstone's FREEWAY FIGHTER is released today, with three different cover variant formats.

Cover A by Ben Oliver

The year is 2024: eighteen months after an unknown virus​ ​wiped-out over eighty-five percent of the world’s population. Former I-400 Driver, Bella De La Rosa, is one of the​ ​remaining fifteen percent – living every day as if it were her​ ​last. Having set out for the township of New​ ​Hope, Bella and​ ​her travelling companion Ryan find themselves caught in a​ ​trap set by the cruel, post-apocalyptic highwayman known​ ​simply as the Animal, and​ ​hunted by his vicious Doom Dogs.


Cover B by series art team Simon Coleby and Len O'Grady

Cover C by Ben Willsher

Saturday, 8 July 2017

The Pub Quiz of Firetop Mountain


8 weeks today Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 will be taking place at the University of West London in Ealing!

Fighting Fantasy fans are travelling from all over the country - and, indeed, all over the world - to attend, and so some will be staying in Ealing the night before.

If you are in or around Ealing on the night of Friday 1st September, why not come around to You Are The Beer-O: Stout of the Pit, the regular meet-up for FF fans hosted by James Aukett?

On this occasion, You Are The Beer-O is teaming up with Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 to put on the world's first Fighting Fantasy pub quiz and raise money for the men's health charity Prostate Cancer UK, in memory of artist Kevin Bulmer, who illustrated Freeway Fighter, and who sadly succumbed to the disease in 2011.

You can find out more about the event here, on the event's Facebook page, and you can buy your ticket for the pub quiz here, through Eventbrite.

Please note that spaces are limited and this event is for over 18s only.


If you haven't already grabbed your ticket for Fighting Fantasy Fest 2, and an event exclusive Adventurer's Backpack - which comes with a t-shirt, lanyard, art print and Balthus Dire miniature - there's still time.


Friday, 7 July 2017

The Warlock of Firetop Mountain DLC - Goblin Scourge!


At the end of July, it's time to return to Firetop Mountain! Three new heroes will be venturing into a whole new section of Zagor's domain on personal quests of vengeance, recovery and rebirth.

As well as the three new heroes and new areas to explore, Zagor has also unleashed a slew of monsters to control. Take your favourite Fighting Fantasy monster out of the pit and into the game!

Watch for more announcements over the next month, about Goblin Scourge, on www.fightingfantasy.com and the Tin Man Games website!


Thursday, 6 July 2017

Part Story, Part Game - Pure Adventure!

They're here! Here's Ian Livingstone holding the first FF releases from Scholastic UK.


The books - including the brand-new The Port of Peril - are published on 3rd August!

Monday, 3 July 2017

How does your Allansian garden grow?

With Nauk Fruit, and Niff Leaf, and Mudcaps all in a row?

Live now on Kickstarter is the latest venture from Arion Games, publishers of the Advanced Fighting Fantasy Second Edition RPG - The Titan Herbal, by Andrew Wright (author of Beyond the Pit).

Kickstarter is a tried and tested way of getting new AFF content to an eager role-playing public, the company having recently released Stellar Adventures, which takes your Advanced FF adventures into space and beyond!

There are only three reward tiers to choose from - PDF, softback and hardback - so, if a catalogue of 255 herbs, stats for plant monsters, and even new hero archetypes, sounds like your sort of thing, you know what to do...

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Fighting Fantasy Audio Dramas to preview at Fighting Fantasy Fest 2!

As of posting, there are just 12 hours left to secure yourself an Early Bird ticket for Fighting Fantasy Fest 2. And don't forget that the Adventurer's Backpack now also includes a limited edition Balthus Dire miniature.


Doors open on Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 at 9:00am on Saturday 2nd September, at the University of West London in Ealing, at which point attendees will be able to register, collect their backpacks, and enter the venue.

Following a welcome talk in a lecture theatre (that seats 300 people) the day will be filled with all manner of FF-related activities. There will be two separate strands of talks, featuring the creators of the original gamebook series as well as new companies taking Fighting Fantasy in new and interesting directions, and one of these is FoxYason Music Productions.

FoxYason Music Productions will be presenting the launch of the a new, exciting range of full-cast, original audio dramas, beginning in September, with the release of the first story in the series, The Warlock of Firetop Mountain. Members of the production team, plus cast, will be at Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 to officially launch the range featuring interviews, clips, a Q&A and the plans for the future range.

Other highlights of the day will be Nomad Games showcase of Fighting Fantasy Legends, and inkle Studios taking attendees back to the world of Steve Jackson's Sorcery!, while the creative team behind Ian Livingstone's FREEWAY FIGHTER will be there to talk about the gestation of the very first Fighting Fantasy comic.

There will also be guest signings (and we do not charge for signatures at Fighting Fantasy Fest 2, in case you were wondering), role-playing game sessions, cosplay, an FF exhibition, numerous traders, a cafe and bar on site, and the opportunity to hang-out with fellow gamebook fans, as well as an auction of rare FF items!

There are still a few Early Bird tickets* left, so don't delay and grab yours today!


* Early Bird Adult tickets are £35 each, but after midnight tonight they will go up in price to £45.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Balthus Dire to attend Fighting Fantasy Fest 2*

* Sort of.

9 weeks today Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 will be taking place at the University of West London in Ealing!

Those Fighting Fantasy fans who attended the first Fighting Fantasy Fest, in 2014, will remember that the  Adventurer's Backpack for that event included a limited edition Zagor figure, produced by Otherworld Miniatures and sculpted by master model-maker Paul Muller.


Well, Otherworld have done it again! As well as an event-exclusive t-shirt, lanyard and tag, and A4 art print, the Adventurer's Backpacks at Fighting Fantasy Fest 2 will also include a Balthus Dire miniature, once again sculpted by Paul Muller (who is interviewed in YOU ARE THE HERO Part 2), and based on Russ Nicholson's classic illustration from Steve Jackson's The Citadel of Chaos.


If you've already grabbed yourself an Adventurer's Backpack you will doubtless be delighted by this news. And if you haven't pre-ordered your Backpack yet, there's still time. (And you could always buy more than one, if you so desire.)