Monday, 11 July 2011

Kicking off Fighting Fantasy week - a little history

This week Trollish Delver is celebrating the Fighting Fantasy gamebook series and the people who bring these great adventures to life. 

Many people from the UK fondly remember becoming absorbed in the Warlock of Firetop Mountain when they were kids and since them Fighting Fantasy has become the world leader in gamebook roleplaying games.

Over the coming week I'll be looking at some of the best (and worst) titles, the who's who of Titan and what the future holds for the series. But first, here's a little history.

Read more after the jump.

In 1980, two blokes called Ian Livingstone and Steve Jackson, who founded wargames store Games Workshop, decided to create a game with a difference. It was one which the player could head out on an adventure on their own, battling monsters and overcoming traps to save the day. They would use numbered paragraphs that were to be read in a non-linear fashion and a system where the player rolls dice to figure out combat and skills.

After submitting their prototype to Puffin publishing called The Magic Quest, the book was picked up in 1982 and expanded into the first book in the eventual series: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain.

Livingstone and Jackson could never know how popular their creation would become. Before the widespread
popularity of video games Fighting Fantasy sold amazingly. Fast forward to the present day where the series consists of over 60 books, as well as having a tabletop roleplaying game, various video games and fan-made content.

Fighting Fantasy may not enjoy the popularity it once did but Wizards Publishing, who bought the franchise in 2002, are determined to get new people reading with the re-releases of the books and the publication of brand new ones like Night of the Necromancer and Stormslayer.

Now you're a bit more familiar with the backstory of the series, it's time to kick-off Fighting Fantasy week. I hope you'll join me for it.