26 February 2011

Non-Hippy Wood-Elves

I remember purchasing this excellent ICE campaign module ~30 years ago. (By Eru I'm old!)

It is one of my favourite RPG books of all time (although I have long since lost the original book, and now only own a much later, heavily revised version from ~1990). It provided a wonderful 'sandbox' campaign setting, with sketchy information on the Withered Heath, the Lonely Mountain, Dale, Laketown, the Wood-elf realm, and so forth. I loved its presentation of a region in which player characters could do whatever they liked (for good or ill!).

And one thing that I especially dig about this cover image (which is one of my favourites from ICE's early Middle-earth line) is that it shows wood-elves to be rather tough chaps. They're no hippy tree-huggers, but instead rugged fellows who know how to kill a giant spider or two, when necessary.

I always liked the portrayal of wood-elves in The Hobbit as somewhat dangerous, not exactly 'good', woodland hedonists. If I ever use elves again in a campaign setting, I think that this picture sums up how I would imagine them.


  1. Can't stand hippie-style elves myself, so thanks for reminding me about the elves of Mirkwood.

  2. This sounds like an exciting Sandbox area. Between the Hobbit and LOTR would offer lots of options for play as 'man' expands from Dale and dwarves and elves work closely together.

    Has anyone seen the Southern Mirkwood version and have any comments on if it is any good? Also is there a good website that explains the different editions to help with eBay purchases?

  3. @ Jovial Priest: The Southern Mirkwood book is also excellent (and I plan to write something about it soon).

    The later editions cover both northern and southern Mirkwood, and expand upon the material in the earlier versions. They also remove, unfortunately, much of the information on Dol Guldor and Laketown (which both became separate, very detailed supplements). Overall, though, they do include *more* information.

  4. Elves in Fighting Fantasy and Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay were never flouncy effeminate wimps. They were always myserious hard as nails sociopaths, out to violently resist invaders into their realms.

    Check out the Wardancer career that showed up in White Dwarf foe WHFRP 1sr and was reprinted in Apographa Now
    Here's a link to a redone version for WHFRP2



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I'm a Canadian political philosopher who lives primarily in Toronto but teaches in Milwaukee (sometimes in person, sometimes online).