The Mountains of Madness – Live! [INTERVIEW]

We have had a great response to our previous post about the Kickstarter for the Icarus Theatre Collective production of H.P Lovecraft’s iconic “At the Mountains of Madness“, and are thrilled to be able to share with you the following interviews with Tim Hardy (actor), Max Lewendel (director), and Theo Holloway (composer) taken during rehearsals.

The Kickstarter has a little while still to run and there is time for you to contribute to what promises to be a spectacular event.  It is worth bearing in mind that this project will go ahead and your pledges will go to making it the very best production that it can be.  It’s a superb opportunity to secure your tickets early, or even to grab a copy of the CD or Download of a “Radio Play” version of the show complete with sound effects and music, [estimated run time 60-79 minutes].

If you have the misfortune to not be near enough to any of the performances and you feel that the £50 pledge is a little too steep for the Radio Play, then the organisers of the Kickstarter are offering the option for you to support them with £25 (or more) and you can swap your tickets for a CD instead!

This is probably a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience one of Lovecraft’s most famous stories in this way, after all, as Lovecraft himself put it; “The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear.”

So come on experience it in a very special way and back the project while you can!


H.P. Lovecraft’s “At the Mountains of Madness” starring RSC veteran Tim Hardy, will be touring across the UK and Ireland from January to December next year (see here for the latest schedule).

The Mountains of Madness by HP Lovecraft – Live!

“I am forced into speech because men of science have refused to follow my advice…”

Here at we do our fair bit to promote campaigns on Kickstarter; we strongly believe in the power of crowdfunding to give life to projects that perhaps otherwise wouldn’t see the light of day, or in other cases to ensure that they get healthy jump start in life and succeed in being the very best that they can be.  Every now and again there is something on Kickstarter that really catches our eye. In this particular instance it was both the subject matter and the evident enthusiasm of the creators that appealed.

Icarus Theatre Collective will be touring an adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s “At the Mountains of Madness” starring RSC veteran Tim Hardy, across the UK and Ireland from January to December next year (see here for the latest schedule).

We are very excited by the prospect of experiencing this stage adaptation of one of  Lovecraft’s most famous tales, a veritable cornerstone of Weird fiction which has thrilled readers with its tale of a disastrous expedition to Antarctica, and the awful implications of what was discovered.   In this one man show Tim Hardy brings William Dyer vividly to life, trapped and tormented by visions of what he saw – and what he could not possibly have seen – in those ancient, Antarctic mountains of madness.

The Kickstarter gives you a great opportunity to contribute towards making the show the best it can be and to support the amazing people behind it.  This is probably your only chance to see a Lovecraftian tale produced for stage in the UK, and by backing the project you can secure some really great rewards for yourself including making sure you get those all important tickets!

You can find all the details you need here, the Kickstarter is live now and runs through to the 7th December, help the project and get to experience this amazing tale as never before.  We hope to bring you more details over the coming weeks, but don’t wait for that – back the project now!

AtMoM Poster

Ninja Crusade 2 Edition Kickstarter

A genre of RPG that I never really managed to get into for a long time was that of the Ninja, the Samurai, Medieval Asian settings – I think the reason being that my exposure to the history and culture was poor, it was a world that I found hard to visualise and to understand.  But, there were always elements that intrigued me – the honor, heroism, and mysticism of the genre would always have me picking up games and supplements and trying to get my head into the genre.  It never quite felt accessible and I think, in truth, I was always slightly nervous of being disrespectful and disingenuous to a cultural heritage that I was in reality very respectful of, but knew little.

Then a couple of years ago I played a single game of Wu-Xing: The Ninja Crusade, run by a friend – I might have opted out of playing that evening but for the fact that the game was produced by Third Eye Games and I already had a love for their game Apocalypse Prevention Inc.  As it turned out I played a really great game that evening, the games master did a fantastic job evoking the setting and explaining the back story to newbies like myself.

Basically behind the Ninja Crusade is the idea that a few years ago, a war was waged upon the ninja of the Izou Empire. This “Ninja Crusade” was ordered by the Emperor following the murder of the Empress and poisoning of the young princess.  Prior to this, the ninja of the Empire had been allies to the Emperor and his family, helping to protect citizens and keep the peace.  But now the Emperor suspecting that ninja had something to do with the tragic events in his family sought terrible vengeance.  The ninja, who live divided into discrete clans carving the Empire into numerous rival territories, were uncharacteristically caught unaware and many villages were destroyed by the Empire’s soldiers. The ninja clans now focussed on survival quickly put aside old rivalries and created the “Lotus Coalition”, a group of ninja to lead the rebellion against the Emperor.

We subsequently even gave the game a little plug here at when it was briefly available as a Pay-What-You-Want on DriveThruRPG (here).

It’s funny how the world sometimes conspires to bring things together.  It was, as I said, a few years ago that I played that single evening of Wu-Xing; The Ninja Crusade and I thought nothing of it until I was trying to select games for the ReuniCon 2015 RPG Day in Brighton this September when I thought briefly about running The Ninja Crusade.  In the end I decided against it, but still spent time re-reading the rulebook.  Then, unrelated, I had a bout of nostalgia when I saw a complete box set of “The Water Margin” for sale on eBay – unopened and unloved I purchased it for a pittance and have since relived many childhood memories watching two seasons of badly dubbed genius from start to finish (if your unfamiliar with it see here).  Then – because these things always seem to come in threes – I got an email, as a backer of previous Kickstarter’s, from Third Eye Games announcing The Ninja Crusade 2nd Ed.  Frankly I think its just the Great GM in the sky telling me that I need to play more of this game…


The project is exciting, it is taking what is already a great game and addressing those bits that maybe weren’t quite the way that they wanted them to be, the wonderful story and background remain the same but the game system gets a major overhaul.

The Kickstarter for Ninja Crusade 2nd Edition is to produce a true system core book, containing all of the rules you need to create characters and play the game. This includes:

  • 10 ninja clans to pick from (plus an 11th clanless option)
  • Detailed history of the Ninja and the Izou Empire
  • Life path-style character creation system
  • Brand new d10 mechanics, redesigned from the ground up to bring stunning ninja action to your table
  • Opponent systems making it easy for GameMasters (GMs) to come up with enemies on the fly
  • New Dynamic Environments that make your choice of terrain a real part of the fight.
  • Plenty of advice on how to run the game

The final product is estimated to be 8.5 x 11, 240 pages, hardcover, black & white interior art, selling for around $40 when it hits the shops. The artwork looks to be superb with the highly talented Daniel Wong producing the majority of the artwork for the book. (See the Kickstarter page for some examples).

What is very exciting for anyone new to The Ninja Crusade is the fact that for the duration of this Kickstarter, Wu Xing: The Ninja Crusade (1st Edition), original released in 2009, is once again available as a Pay-What-You-Want product through DriveThruRPG. Anyone interested in checking out the 1st Edition can simply download it and give it a read. All the guys at 3EG ask is that if you like it, then please consider backing Ninja Crusade 2nd Edition. 

Happy Birthday Howard

August 20th is the the birthday of Howard Phillips Lovecraft without whom there would clearly be no so every year we, along with millions of others mark the date.  This year we still find ourselves in the throes of preparing for and helping to organise the ReuniCon 2015 RPG Day – Brighton’s premier RPG event on September 5th (full details here).  So we haven’t really had a chance to put the balloons out or to bake a cake – however for those of you looking for a good way to celebrate Howard we have a few suggestions here.

Where have we been?

Its’ a good question, and it has certainly been a while since the last update or post here at  What’s worse is it has been a really busy time in the games world and there are a host of things I’d like to have been writing about; my copy of “Horror on the Orient Express” finally arrived, and other Kickstarters have delivered as well, including the “Cthulhu Britannica London Box Set” which is a thing of extreme beauty. The Ennie nominations came and went, GenCon is upon us, and yet I have not managed to find time for reviews, moans, groans or eulogising about any of these things.

So why?

Well the answer is I’m helping to organise an RPG Games Day in Brighton, East Sussex, on the 5th September and I’ll be honest and say that it is pretty much all I think about when it comes to games at the minute.  This will be the eighth such games day that we have organised, badged as ReuniCon, it has until now been a great excuse to get as many previous members of Brighton University’s Roleplaying Society (BURPS) together as we can, to play games and generally catch up.  Now given that the society got going in 1987 and as the strapline says “we are still slaying dragons”, there have been a lot of changes over the years, we have had people from every incarnation of the society take part, some of us have brought friends along, some of us have taken our kids, the thing has grown, evolved, matured.  Then this year a big change – we needed a new venue – we weren’t able to use the Student Union premises that we had been fortunate enough to enjoy for the last seven years of hosting the event, and we needed to find somewhere else.

So what?

Well what this has done for us is two things; one ithas made us go and find a venue we could afford but wasn’t someones kitchen, it has made us charge admission from people who had enjoyed the day for free for many years.  Secondly it also gave us an opportunity to open our doors to the wider public, to do what we started out doing twenty eight years ago, it gave us the chance to share our hobby with complete strangers.  This in turn has meant that we need to be a little bit better organised that perhaps we might have been…  It has meant organising tickets (which you can get here), getting the venue, having a schedule, ensuring we have enough GM’s for any eventuality, competitions, t-shirts and so much more.

Its keeping me busy, but its going to be great fun. We know we will probably not get the hundreds and hundreds that will turn up at say Dragonmeet, and we don’t have a trade hall (yet!), but we do have some awesome GM’s, some fantastic games and a growing list of attendees all of whom I’m looking forward to meeting.  I also know that there is nothing else really like it on the South coast so we are here to stay and whilst we might start modestly, in this our eighth year, we already have amazing plans for next year!

Sun, Sea & Roleplaying – sounds perfect?

Sure it does  – and there are only 38 days left to get a ticket (from here), and we will start sharing details of the organised games over the next few weeks and allow people to start pre-booking places on their favourites.  We have plenty of space if you want to come and run your own game, we will even promote it if you get in touch (

You can find all the details you need, including help on where to find us, where to stay and what to expect on our website at as well as on twitter @ReuniCon #reunicon2015 and on facebook.

Come down to Brighton, play some fantastic games and meet some great people.  We would love to see you at our games day by the seaside.