Sunday, January 05, 2014

The Seclusium of Orphone of the Three Visions

The Seclusium of Orphone of the Three Visions is a fantastic book with a title that deserves some explanation.

A Seclusium is the sanctuary of a wizard. It is where they research magic, create arcane devices, study the metaverse and relax away from the world. The book deals with the vunerable phase in the lifecycle of the sanctuary of a wizard. The point where the wizard has abandoned or been forced to leave but much of the defenses and occupants of the sanctuary are still present.

Orphone of the Three Visions is a wizard who has become lost in a realm of creation that leaves her in a state of orgasmic ecstasy. In doing so she leaves her creations and failed experiments to wander her laboratories.

Vincent Baker has put together an amazing hardback that consists of a scene-setting essay on the relationship between wizards and their place of study and retirement from the world.This is then followed by three wizards whose have abandoned their Seclusiums.

Brilliantly each wizard consists of custom lists of options that you pick from to create your own unique version of Orphone or any of the other wizards. It brings all the modern storygame techniques of provocative creation to traditional fantasy gaming.

By going back to the original sources though the lists crackle with strange, inspiring and uncomfortable fantasy rather than the now too-easy tropes of Tolkien-homage.

It's incredibly exciting to read and a powerful reminder of what fantasy and imagination can invoke in the reader.
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