Thursday, September 08, 2005

Cover story

Getting a good cover for your books is really important- not only do you have to make sure it's attractive- so that folks pick the book up- it also has to hint at what's inside. If at all possible, it should tell some sort of story.

For Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay we decided to make the first few books tell the tale of a fictional Gaming group's adventures in the Old World. We created five iconic characters and set them loose- from the initial ambush on the rule book, to the intrigues and alarums of the Paths of the Damned covers.

You can see two of the characters on this initial concept of the Wyvern attack thats on the front of the Old World Bestiary- Christer Sveen did a great job of creating a dynamic image- and capturing the essence of our two favorite characters.

Here's an except from the background that formed part of his brief:

"Urrel worked in the forges of his fathers once, crafting steel and iron into marvels and wonders. His Kin-folk named him ‘Evenhand’- high praise indeed, for smiths so often have strength at the expense of skill. Urrel had both, in equal weight. And so the Years passed. His Beard grew. Amongst the Dwarves of the Middle Mountains his name was whispered. ‘Runesmith’ said the elders. ‘Master Artisan’ said his friends. This was not to be.

No Dwarf alive can name Urrel’s Great Shame, for no Dwarf lived that fateful day.
Urrel journeyed out with three Elders, for they were to initiate him into the ways of the Runes. Four set out, and only one came back. Urrel returned bloodied and alone. His kinsfolk saw him enter his home and bar the doors. For seven days and seven nights his hammer rang out from his father’s forge. They say the entire hold feared to approach when at last the anvil fell silent.

Urrel emerged bearing the crest of the Slayer, and two axes, bright and hot from their forging. Urrel looked upon his clan and named his weapons ‘Pride’ and ‘Fury’. These, he roared, were his undoing, and these would be his end.

Apart from a few knives in his belt, Urrel owns little other than these axes."


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