Writing you a short note about what long has become a reality: At the latest, with the closure of The Tomb of Rahotep
, and almost four years after the end of The Promised Land
, our great game, and joint community effort, The Last Fantasy Campaign
, is now, finally, completely, and likely irrevocably, finished.
In case you are late enough to the party to have missed it altogether, "The Last Fantasy Campaign" (LFC) was a long-running PBP campaign that started rather unambitiously, one lazy afternoon in November 2005, as The Grim Winter
, on the message boards of Zeitgeist Games
, the company which then held the rights to the Blackmoor
license. When Zeitgeist Games
folded in 2008/2009, the members of "The Company of the Maiden", as our group was known in-game, supplied the basic infrastructure that enabled Blackmoor to remain alive on the World Wide Web, to the point where we are today.
In 2010, our then already existing conglomerate of games adopted the name of "The Last Fantasy Campaign", to express the slow shifting of our focus from being "random games, by random people", to being a community project with the goal of advancing Blackmoor
beyond what had been published already. The focus of our last *big* game, The Promised Land
, lay on writing ending chapters to the World of Blackmoor's great stories; ending chapters that were plausible within the context of our own game, and at least fundamentally compatible with the original vision of Dave Arneson. If we accomplished anything really worth a second look within that higher context, is for you, dear readers, to decide.
Between 2005 and 2015, almost sixty people played in games that were directly part of, or somehow else associated with the LFC
. The core story alone, from The Grim Winter
, over The War Of The Thieves
and The Road
, to The Promised Land
, saw around 35 different players come and go. But what would make this group of people noteworthy to an outside spectator would not be its sheer size: It would be that nearly all of them were associated with Dave Arneson and Blackmoor
in some other capacity already before
they joined us: Either privately, or professionally, as editors, artists, and writers for the Blackmoor
brand, or even as students to Mr Arneson's classes while he was teaching at Full Sail
. If our project could ever be seen, in any way, or on any level, as an acceptable addition to the Blackmoor
myth, then, it would probably not so much be because of the supposed artistic refinement of our stories, but because so many people were involved with the LFC
that were, and remain - and pardon the epic tone I use here - true Blackmoorians
I had even made plans to continue the LFC
after a two-year break, in 2014, with a sequel to The Promised Land
that went by the name of The Age of Theodore
would have continued the game in a dynastic fashion, much like Terry Brooks' novel, The Scions of Shannara
, is a continuation of his original series. - But, alas, I had to cancel the game, pretty much weeks before its start; the reasons for this remain private. Suffice to say that, lamentably, sometimes, there are simply more important things in life than gaming.
Even so, I like to think that we have not seen the last of the LFC
, just yet: Perhaps, in a few years, we might still pick up where we left off. Or, as a wise man once said, we might do something else, entirely.
- For the time being, though, it's over
In the upcoming weeks, I am going to shrink, and to shut down most of the LFC
's remaining online infrastructure; so far I had kept it up to accommodate the games that were still running, but now that they are done, it's time to move on. To those interested in following my own, and our original gaming group's further exploits, I recommend subscribing to the The World of Meleon
. To those interested in all things Blackmoor
, I recommend getting in touch with my good friend Havard
, who does and has done some marvellous things for the setting
. It is his interpretation of the Great Kingdom's Northern lands, codified in The Gazetteer of the Eastern Marshes
, rather than any of my own writings, that I suggest to any interested newbie as a starting point for his or her adventures in Blackmoor
, from now onwards. I myself will likely not be involved in, well, anything
, any more - that is, unless the LFC
should really, ever, make a very unexpected return.
For the future of our community, of which I obviously still remain a member, and for the future of Blackmoor
, as a brand, I, as a fan, remain to wish for two things:
First, that the setting doesn't become a museum; rerunning classic scenarios over and over can be great sport, for sure. But it gets boring with time. For a campaign world, or, rather, a community, to be truly alive, it needs an occasional dose of innovation. So, don't be afraid to change things, to make them work for your game. I never met Mr Arneson, but from what I heard about him, I don't think he'd be afraid, either.
And second, I'd wish - and this was kind of previsible, wasn't it?- that whenever, if ever
gets picked up again as a brand, whoever becomes its manager, will do it justice. For me, and for most that were with me during these last ten years, gaming, online, like offline, is a labor of love. So, please, let's keep it like that, so one day, in the future, looking back, I don't have to think of mine and my friends' efforts as a mistake.- But, now, enough of these cheeseful musings! My feet are cold, and my ale is warm! There are orcs to slay, and dragons to tame! ...Is that... Even... The British National Anthem played backwards?! - Come on, let's hurry to the dungeon, to the Orcian Way! Stand in the shield wall, side by side! Next to King Uther, next to Rowell the Blade, or next to Prince Theodore! ...Like so many valiant heroes before you have stood, and will still come to stand. For the last 45 years.
Take care, my friends, and see you around! UTHER, ONCE AND ALWAYS!