05 April 2012

Possible Future Elric pictures from Jeff Dee

Some of you might remember Jeff Dee’s illustrations for the ‘Melniboneán Mythos’ included in the original printing of the Deities and Demigods book for AD&D. This chapter and the one devoted to the ‘Cthulhu Mythos’ were removed from subsequent printings of the book. (Contrary to what many people have assumed over the years, the decision to remove the Moorcock and Lovecraft based material was made by TSR not in response to complaints from Chaosium. Apparently TSR did not want to give ‘publicity’ to Chaosium’s Stormbringer and Call of Cthulhu games.)

Tragically, the original artwork by Dee for the Deities and Demigods book was lost. However, he is planning on recreating 22 pictures from the Melniboneán Mythos chapter in the near future. Anyone interested in this project, and possibly obtaining some prints or postcards from Dee’s ‘kickstarter’ project, can find more information here.

(Ah, by Arioch, I still dig that picture of the Myyrrhn warrior with the ‘mohawk’ haircut!)


  1. Elric as Chaotic Evil, eh? Chaotic Neutral, maybe.

    Wonder what it would make Stormbringer ('A thousand times more evil than thou'): Super Chaotic Mega Evil?

    1. I would agree , chaotic evil is totally stretching it. Ok, he would go a little nuts when using Stormbringer, but that was more of being in beserk mode than calculated evil.

  2. And never once in the Elric saga does Arioch use a bloody sword... Magic Resistance 90%? He's a bloody Lord of Chaos!!!!

  3. Oh, the write-ups were a bit ridiculous. But, it's a difficult problem - D&D doesn't really model Moorcock's stories, so what to do?

    Nevertheless, I hope we can all agree that Elric's swash boots were so super-groovy as to represent a power in their own right.

    And I still think Arioch looks like that guy Dee drew, no matter how many times I read the books.

    1. Yeah, Dee's depictions of the Melnibonean creatures and characters deeply shaped how I imagined them for years afterwards (and even today, to some extent).

  4. The AD&D stats for the Cthulhu deities are equally ... odd. I vaguely recall the Arthurian and Nehwon stats being somewhat less implausible (although still not quite right).

    Looking back, I think that the whole attempt to translate most heroes and deities, whether from actual myth or fiction, into AD&D stats was misguided. Ah, the innocence of 1981 RPGs...

  5. Well I pledged 45 dollars. I want a signed print of Dee's 'Elric' to place above my gaming shelf! :)


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