There are monster books and then there's Fire On The Velvet Horizon which is one part punk aesthetic artwork & six parts monster book from the depths of the soul of an adventurer whose seen deep into the recesses of the human abyss. Someone showed up at my house today with this book and handed it too me, they made me promise to review it. Well Justin I keep my promises and here's the review you were promised. Fire On The Velvet Horizon is one hundred pages of brain melting monster candy done in Scrap Princess's frenzied art style along with Patrick Stewart's prose. The book clocks in at one hundred and twenty one pages
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GRAB IT HERE
How the hell do you describe the one hundred monsters that are within this book? Well its sort of an in monster and adventure book all in one. Full of a monsters that slowly crawl off of the page and quietly rams themselves into your back brain. These are original, weird, and more then creepy monsters who come to life at each turn of the page. I'd probably put this book at about the level of a Red & Pleasant Land, the artwork is punk and dark acid aesthetic warped through a blender of nightmare fuel. There isn't a single stat in the book but the creatures really do get under your skin in a odd alien way.
This book is more artifact then actual Monster Manual, its a book of monsters in fact over a one hundred of them but these are things that have their own internal rules of play within their descriptions. These things are the stuff of nightmare that you might see just before you wake up from sweat induced fever. Are they well done? Absolutely! Are they original? Very much so! But where can you use these horrors? They each have their place within the frame work of their own reality. I can easily see using these horrors in a place like Carcosa or the back end of some ancient Lovecraftian nameless abattoir setting.
This is a book for people who love monsters and by monsters I mean the really weird things that lurk between the cracks of reality and the horrors of some demented dungeon master's mad ravings. There are three reasons to use this book :
- One you want monsters that are violently weird, original, and very strange to build an adventure around. These are creatures that can do exactly that, monsters that you can build entire adventure frame works around.
- These are horrors and creatures that feed into the realms of fantasy and dark imagination.
- The horrors of this book have an internal consistency that breeds its own mythology around the contents of Fire On The Velvet Horizon and that makes the book beg to be used at the DM's table.
But is the book actually good? Well its a book that demands the reader's attention and imagination sparking off ideas for adventures just in the reading of it. Fire on the Velvet Horizon is dark and original in its bold strokes of internal mythologies. Many of the creatures are odd and very dangerous found in only the remotest areas.
After spending part of the day going through this book I can honestly say I've never seen any other bestiary or old school monster book quite like Fire on The Velvet Horizon. It weird and truly wonderful book of monsters that kicks soon much ass. I can see using this book to generate entire campaigns around it. Five out of five for this new school monster manual, Fire On the Velvet Horizon hits all of the right buttons for creativity, originality and DYI Dungeons and Dragons!
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