Monday 11 October 2021

[ZINE] Echoes From Fomalhaut #09 (NOW AVAILABLE!)

Beyond the Gates of Sorrow
I am pleased to announce the publication of the ninth issue of my fanzine, Echoes From Fomalhaut. This is a 56-page zine dedicated to adventures and GM-friendly campaign materials for Advanced old-school rules, with cover art by Graphite Prime, and illustrations by Vincentas Saladis, Cameron Hawkey, Denis McCarthy, Stefan B. Poag, and the Dead Victorians.

This issue serves to introduce the Twelve Kingdoms, a divided northern region to the northwest of Erillion, cut off from the rest of human civilisation. Two hex map sheets describe the five larger, four medium-sized, and numerous smaller islands ruled by rival petty kingdoms, and ravaged by incessant warfare. Ruined castles, faerie-haunted forests, barren coasts and cold mountain ranges await those who adventure here; druids, reclusive eccentrics, jealous wizards’ orders and mysterious monasteries complicate the network of temporary alliances. This is a land fit for exploration, plunder... or will that be conquest? Let the players decide, and live with the consequences!

The titular adventure, Beyond the Gates of Sorrow, takes the company to a small archipelago on the borders of the Kingdoms. Uninhabited and barely sustainable to sustain life, there is nevertheless much danger here. Can a shipwrecked party find a means of escape from their predicament? Or can another find a person or item of special significance while racing against a rival group of explorers? 19 wilderness and 18 dungeon locations describe the archipelago’s dangers and occasional treasures in this scenario for levels 2-4.

Echoes #09 also includes a larger dungeon adventure, The Vaults of Volokarnos. Originally published as a stand-alone introductory module for the Casemates and Companies RPG, and now converted to the B/X lineage of old-school games, the Vaults are specifically designed for beginning characters, and potentially players who are new to old-school gaming in general. A fully stocked dungeon level awaits with 52 keyed reas, and more orcs than you can shake a stick at. Explore a dungeon complex that had once served as a catacomb system, thermal bath, touristic attraction... at the same time. Find out what the orcs are up to, what lies in burial vaults yet unconquered, and what the patricians of the nearby town do not want you to know... and where character sheets and followers are concerned, bring spares. It shall not hurt.

In addition to the Vaults, the issue also describes the isle republic of Arak Brannia. This two-page setting can serve as the background for the Vaults of Volokarnos, or a springboard for further adventures on the northern coastlands of the declining Kassadian Empire...

The print version of the fanzine is available from my Bigcartel store; the PDF edition will be published through DriveThruRPG with a few months’ delay. As always, customers who buy the print edition will receive the PDF version free of charge.

Double hex map


  1. Nice! I think the big keyed hexmaps are some of the features in Echoes.

    I am curious, what is the Hungarian convention regarding XP from magic treasure?

    1. According to the Casemates and Companies rulebook, gaining or selling magical treasure does NOT provide XP.

    2. And you don't get any XP for acquiring or selling a magical item in Melan's own Sword & Magic, either. However, S&M awards XP for carousing and spending money in a frivolous and useless manner. You could get XP commensurate with a magic item's financial value by getting rid of it in a similar way, at least Melan has allowed it to happen in his games in the past.

      Sword & Magic might need a new abbreviation in English...

    3. We could follow the lead of the Hungarian abbreviation and go with SaM!

  2. Can’t wait for the PDF version. I have them all. Just got to use the mysterious manor from issue 1 with my Thursday crew. We are in the City State of the Invincible Overlord, and they rolled on a random jobs table that had a nobleman hire them to clear orcs from squatting on an estate they want to re-occupy. It was a perfect fit. I put it just north of the Eorlbane river. The party parlayed with Rudlug, and had a wrestling match with him to prove they were on the level. He agreed to let them meet his smuggler boss… if they can get rid of whatever spooky stuff in the cellars that is scaring his superstitious henchmen.

    I digress. I love your stuff, and I am eagerly looking for ways to work it all into our Tuesday/Thursday open table Wilderlands sandbox campaign.

  3. Now, with the publication of Volokarnos, we have the opportunity to start an all-Melan campaign even if we start our players at 1st level!

  4. The title sounds like a doom metal album. And the cover looks the part too!