Saturday, September 16, 2023

Wretched New Flesh Post Cards From Avalidad Rpg & The Works of J.G. Ballard as Old School Campaign

Wretched New Flesh Postcards from Avalidad is one of my favorite rpg's from the Red Room. But how does this mix with say the works of surrealist Science Fiction author J.G. Ballard?! 

 Good afternoon & deeply sorry for my absence. Real life and work has been taking inreasing amounts of my time lately. I wanted to take a bit of time out to speak about the Wretched New Flesh rpg from the Red Room.  And what sparks this up is a brand new video from Grimjim & his new adventure location Penny Tower. And specifically I wanted to talk about J.G. Ballard the Science Fiction and fantasy author. And I can't wait for Penny Tower to hit the stands 

J.G. Ballard is an excellent author for set up Wretched New Flesh rpg campaigns because he offers Science Fiction from a different perspective. Mr. Ballard's works came into my life in college through of all things the remains of a tag or boot sale as my wife would describe it. I was helping the local college with said tag & book sale. And one of the last boxes were crammed with paperbacks. One of which was Ballard's Vermillion Sands paperback. The rest of that box was life changing but that's a story for another day. And there was a copy of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, December 1967 right there along with Vermillion Sands. And a bit from the Vermillion Sands's Wiki entry hits the nail on the head; "Times Literary Supplement review describes the collection's surrealist mood : "J.G. Ballard is … one of the most accomplished creators of evocative landscapes in modern fiction … he achieves this effect partly by painting his desert in the manner of Dali, a mixture of appalling clarity and the exotic."" 

At the time I was playing in a deep & abiding 'Over The Edge' Rpg campaign & we visited Vermillion Sands as a location that we visited. Ballard's literature is not too well known in the mainstream these days which is both a shame and were it belongs. "Picturing Vermillion Sands 'an entry on goes a long way towards capturing the esssence of the surreal Vermillion Sands. A place lost to time and space where the wind carvers carve out the clouds into art, the long & langusihing starlets are watching thier world crumble, and technological decay sits side by side with the sand rays. And it's the idea that a place with strange technologies in free fall decay would both be a excellent foil and surrealistic experience for a party of agents and explorers from Avalidad. 
Vermillion Sands captures the Ballardian nature of the place;"From the distinct nature of the literary fiction of J. G. Ballard arose the adjective Ballardian, defined as: "resembling or suggestive of the conditions described in J. G. Ballard's novels and stories, especially dystopian modernity, bleak man-made landscapes, and the psychological effects of technological, social or environmental developments".[5] The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography describes the novelist Ballard as preoccupied with "ErosThanatos, mass media and emergent technologies""

In Ballard's work & worlds the PC's are experiencing the extraordinary but can't fight against it persay. This is very much in line with many of the elements & themes of a Wretched New Flesh rpg campaign. And these would be worlds that could be visited, explored, etc. as well as be endured. The following are some of the best to bring to life for a group of explorers, agents, etc: 

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