Do you bear in mind the 1980s Dungeons & Dragons cartoon, the one the place a bunch of children went on a D&D fairground journey which magically transported them right into a D&D fantasy world? (Did not occur at my native truthful, I let you know.) They grew to become characters within the recreation: a boy barbarian, the hunky teenage ranger, the nerdy wizard… It seemed like enjoyable. However these children, they by no means discovered a approach out. Each episode for 3 seasons they searched to no avail, after which the sequence abruptly ended, incomplete. They have been trapped. It is like somebody locked the Narnia cabinet. The children have been by no means seen once more. What occurred to them?
(The final episode of the Dungeons & Dragons TV show was written, by the way, however by no means filmed. You’ll be able to learn it on-line. I shan’t spoil it!)
‘What occurred to them?’ It bounced round Kieron Gillen’s head one night time at dinner. I am certain you have heard of him. He used to write down about video video games – on Eurogamer even! Then he co-founded Rock, Paper, Shotgun, after which he grew to become an acclaimed author within the comedian world, working for Marvel earlier than co-creating his wonderful The Depraved + The Divine sequence. It was the destiny of the D&D children Gillen was questioning about when all of the sudden an concept hit him and he apparently burst into tears. And lo, his new comic series, Die, was born.
Die has solely simply begun, actually: problem 4 arrives subsequent week, sixth March. I’ve solely learn one and two as a result of my native store bought out of three – you do not care – however I am hooked. As a recreation participant, it is irresistible. Die is about video games. It is a few bunch of teenage children enjoying a pen-and-paper RPG after which, um, oh golly, one thing occurs, which you’ll be able to most likely guess at however I do not need to spoil.
It is just like the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon, solely pulled aside and remade into one thing new, one thing daring and recent and oh so cool – the artwork by Stephanie Hans is scrumptious. As if somebody, most likely such as you, sat there and thought would not it’s cool if we spun this RPG trope on its head. Would not it’s cool if a boring bard may do this.
Like… the Dictator. There’s truly a category known as a Dictator, and it elicits feelings in folks like a musician or performer would in actual life. Gillen took that concept and dialled it up a fantasy notch. “Dictators are like Bards,” he defined behind Die problem two – “if everybody was fucking afraid of Bards.” I imply, who would not need to play as one?
Or there’s the Grief Knight, a spin on a paladin, which makes use of feelings for energy; or the Godbinder, a spin on a cleric, which does not a lot ask gods for favours as demand them. All of the characters are new takes on what has grow to be rote, and it is so refreshing. Once you see what their powers can do, you may yearn to play as them.
And you’ll – you’ll get an opportunity to play as them. Gillen fell to this point down the analysis gap he ended up truly writing a Die RPG – the identical one the children play within the comedian. He will launch it alongside the first Die collection, which arrives fifth June.
It is the creation of the Die RPG and the Die comedian – the 2 are naturally intertwined – Gillen writes about behind every problem. The anecdote about him bursting into tears within the restaurant comes from there, as does understanding the misplaced D&D children offered the inspiration. On this approach, Die is doubly fascinating. Not solely is it an attractive new comedian in its personal proper, completely geared toward gamers of video games, however it’s an interesting deconstruction of D&D and the myriad issues it influenced too. I am solely on problem two and Gillen has veered onto the that means of cube themselves. It is nice.
It is just the start. That is simply the opening gambit. But when the remainder of Die can dwell as much as the promise laid out right here, it may very well be one thing particular certainly. I’m hungry for extra.