Friday, May 11, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.131: To Fight the Black Wind

Tonight’s entry is something of a deviation from the intended post - on account of the large number of superb cocktails I have been imbibing this evening (not to mention the newly acquired bottle of 5 year old Somerset Cider Brandy which demands investigation once I get home). So, in place of a capsule analysis of another classic of modern Lovecraftian fiction, instead we have a recent acquisition: To Fight the Black Wind.

inappropriate euphamisms aside, this is the latest novella in Fantasy Flight Games’ Arkham Horror fiction line, which also comes with a set of cards allwing you to play the tale’s main chatacter, Carolyn Fern, in the Arkham Horror Card Game. Carolyn Fern is a regular go-to of mine in games like Elder Sign and Eldritch Horror, so I do have a certain investment in this particular Lovecraftian-gaming fiction hybrid.

I’m about a chapter into this one, and in fact the writing is an improvement on previous entries in the series; it is worth noting, however, that FFG’s recent line of Arkham Horror fiction hasn’t garnered great reviews, and my current opinion is that, whilst they are viable but workmanlike pieces of pulp gaming fiction, they severely miss the mark when it cones to evoking a sense of cosmic dread. That said, one online reviewer made the point that these novellas are not, in fact, aimed at the Lovecraftian connossieur, but are character pieces meant to facilitate gamers’ investment in the protaganists which populate the Arkham Horror universe - and in doing so, to encourage a greater sense of narrative immersion in the storylines of that world. This is an approach which does, on reflection, have merit; as such, I may have to re-evaluate my own attitude towards the series in future.

Well, that was not the short, pointed post I had intended to produce - in any case, with that out of the way, time for further interrogation of that fine bottle of cider brandy by way of my squidified portable shot glass...

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