Gamebook store

Friday, 14 January 2011

Spreading the word

Federico Righi has posted up a review of the reissued Fabled Lands books in Librogame's Land magazine. Alternatively check out And if you don't read Italian, feel free to write a review in English (or indeed any other language) and post it up somewhere on the web. We won't complain!

Federico is also working on a translation of "The Island of Illusions" for Italian gamers. We'll post up the link as soon as it's ready.

By the way, if you're looking for the Fabled Lands books, you can get them from Amazon Italy for the knockdown price of €5.05 each. That's almost 30% off what UK and US stores are charging. I call that a pretty fabulous deal.

And talking of sweet deals, Barnes & Noble are giving 5% off Mirabilis at the moment. And Amazon France have it at a discount too. The whole world's gone mad.


  1. I've been posting on forums here and there to draw people's attention to the books, but maybe it is time I found a book review site that they're missing from and did a full write up...

    A few of my gaming group will probably be receiving late xmas presents of the War Torn Kingdom in order to get them interested in the Fabled Lands environment. Good preparation for the arrival of the RPG, and hopefully some of them won't be able to resist picking up the rest of the series!

    As an aside, it's odd for me to be using my real first name to comment as, but I've held back from using my usual handle (Chalor) in the one place people are guaranteed to know that it wasn't my own invention!

  2. That's what we need more than anything, James: new converts to FL. The RPG should bring a lot of folks who may have dismissed solo gamebooks as a spent fad, and I do think that anyone who tries the FL books will soon discover that gamebooks can be as much fun as role-playing or MMOGing.

    Book review sites are the way forward, but obviously Jamie and I can't write our own reviews! So we are very grateful for anybody who can take some time to help get the word out.

    Chalor is a good choice of alter ego. At least you didn't pick Damontir. That would be worrying...

  3. I have just posted some news of the books' reissue on Infoludoiche.orh and ordered all four books on

  4. Thanks! Hope you enjoy the books. We're still waiting to see if Fabled Lands LLP will greenlight 5 and 6 (and hopefully the rest of the series) but so far sales are looking good. And those 4 books give you plenty to be getting on with.

  5. So so excited about hopefully seeing books 7-12 in the not too distant future! I'm keeping everything crossed that they can happen. I'd be more than happy to pay at least twenty quid for each book (not that everyone else will of course!) However the fact that old editions of the books were selling at up to £50 each before the re-releases proves just how precious these books are. Also remember that if books 7-12 are released sales should be much higher than for the re-releases of books 1-6 as so many people are itching to get their hands on the new material. Have books 7-12 been written yet and just not published or do they still need some work?

  6. Any chance you could give us an update on how close we are to the green light on books 5 & 6? Also if possible, I'm sure all of us would like to know how close we are to seeing books 7-12 as a reality as well?

    While I'm asking question any chance you know when the iPhone app is going live on the app store? Or the Fabled Lands RPG?

    If it's too early to say any of this, it's fine I understand I just figured it would be worth trying to ask :)

    Thanks a bunch!

  7. Tazar, Colin - the iPad game is being submitted to Apple today, so you can expect to see that in the very near future.

    The RPG is coming along nicely. I need to check with the guys at Greywood Publishing about that, but I think it will only be a month or two before the first book is out.

    Fabled Lands LLP are going to look at sales of books 1-4 after the Bologna Book Fair in March. If books 5 and 6 get the go-ahead, they should then be out by May. If books 7+ get greenlit, they'll take longer - they haven't been written yet!

  8. Well most gamebook fans will have read the fabled lands becuase... their like the Mecca of gamebooks.

    For my part I posted on tvtropes with the trope Uncancelled, and a link to amazon, and i thik i gabe anotice on the gamebooks yahoo group.

    I would have left a review on and amazon but their were already plenty of "this is the best gamebook ever written, its been reisued, go buy it".

    How about you test the waters with just book 7? For a new book we'd all rush like crazy. If 7 sells you can publish the rest, if it doesnt you havent gambeled much.

    I've read my fabled lands so much the cover is starting to fall off, and I'm sure im not the only one. Try 7 at least and see if we don't all go crazy for it.

  9. Have to agree with Paul. If you are able to at least take a small gamble (and I'm sure it will only be a small one) on book 7 and see how the sales go then you'll know where you stand - otherwise we'll all die wondering which would be such a shame! I'm a qualified accountant by the way - I'm sure you already have great accountants but if you happened to want a second opinion on anything then it wouldn't cost you a penny.

  10. Thanks, Colin. Fabled Lands LLP do have accountants (an area that Jamie and I keep well out of) but we do appreciate the offer.

    The financial risk on books 7+ is expected to fairly high (writing, editing, new art, cover, layout and production) which is why the existing books need to prove themselves commercially first. Fabled Lands LLP has to allocate its funds across multiple projects, and risk vs return is always carefully weighed up.

    The other factor we've had to consider is that if we released book 7 now it would mainly be selling to diehard FL fans. And, much as we respect our diehard fans, there aren't enough of them at the moment to justify books 7-12. Jamie and I have learned from James Wallis's experience with the reissued Dragon Warriors. That was targeted at the diehard DW fans and in the end James had to drop it becauses sales weren't high enough. We don't want to follow that course with FL - which is why the reissued books are low-cost paperbacks intended to attract new readers.

    What FL needs is a whole bunch of new fans to join the loyalists and then it will be commercially viable. Megara's iPad game will help. So will the RPG from Greywood. And so too, we hope, will the new edition of books 1-4. Once FL has the support of a big enough fanbase, we can do books 7-12 - and much much more ;)

  11. Ok that's fair enough Dave. I understand what you are saying and I have a lot of respect for you taking time out to talk to fans. I'll look forward to hopefully hearing some postive sales news then after the Book Fair in March.

  12. "Well most gamebook fans will have read the fabled lands becuase... their like the Mecca of gamebooks."

    I've never yet read them; I always considered the Blood Sword books to be the apex of gamebook writing. Weirdly, I only heard about Fabled Lands quite recently - Russ Nicholson mentioned them to me himself, when I was interpreting for him at the Monde du Jeu.

    I own books 1 - 4, now. I'm a little wary of getting into them, though - I've already had to swear off RPG computer games, as they seem to get into my head and occupy a lot of my time; as I work from home a lot, this causes my productivity (and so, my salary...) to plummet somewhat. From what I've heard so far, I'm a touch wary of the FL books having much the same effect.

    I'll get to them. I have a relatively quiet week coming up sometime soon...

    I also have some thoughts about where I could put a couple of French-language reviews, if that would be useful?

    Presuming the books impress me, of course...

  13. Paul - French, Italian, UK, US... all reviews are good! I can relate totally to what you're saying about games being a time-suck. I daren't touch Mass Effect, The Witcher, etc, as I would do no work until I'd completed them. In defense of the FL books, you can take them places you probably wouldn't play a CRPG (bus, train, etc) so I hope you give them a try.

  14. Well, it was a honour telling to our readers about the reissues (are there any differenmces with the old books, besides the format?) and I always hope that anh Italian puyblisher will pick up the rights. Meanwhile, I hope to review the book on a future issue of our DM Magazine - is about retrogamign and retrogames/clones but a Fabled Lands reissue surely fits the bill ^_^

  15. Hi Ciro - we corrected some of the broken links that eagle-eyed readers have pointed out over the years, making this new edition almost error-free. I say "almost" because of the misspelling of the Scouting skill on the adventure sheet. See, you're not the only one who does typos :-)

  16. Well, there are still many imperfect layout like sale prices with no space between item and price or a link that is not bold.

    But frankly, it is nice to play on new books, especially there is now a new codeword which mean we may meet that Old Man once more :)

    Inspired by characters Marcus Junius Brutus and Pace. Pace's journal is quite amusing to read. I decided to make written journey of my character :)

  17. So you spotted the new codeword, eh, Joe? Aha - that's going to make a comeback if we ever get to books 7-12 ;-)

    I love Pace's Journal. Jamie and I read it and were laughing at all the crazy stuff that can happen, and the writer has a very nice ironic prose style. Any idea who he is? Pace - if you're reading this, shout out and take a bow, dude!

  18. Finally received my new editions today, the post has been terrible recently...

    They do look very crisp and neat, though possibly that's just the comparison to much-played books after fifteen years!

    I'm pleased that the local maps have retained their charm despite the transition to black and white, and most of the illustrations seem to sit nicely in the new format.
    One of the biggest losses in my opinion (I'm sure it was a tough decision for you too) was the loss of the starting characters. While it's nice to be offered a clean slate right away, it's also really encouraging to have some sense of direction and purpose on the first playthrough. But this is just speculation, and I'm sure after a few deaths at the hands of some of the myriad pitfalls the books have to offer, any newcomer would be happy to start afresh with a new name, new ideas, and more of THAT stat for a start...

    Really pleased with how it's all looking, and I've ordered a few more copies of book 1 to hand around (good advice on!

    Thanks for all the years of entertaining and fulfilling reading and gaming both, Dave, and here's to many more to come!

  19. Hi James - those starting characters didn't fit in the books, but they are here (along with some other extras) on the Spark Furnace site:

  20. Hi Dave! Hi Jamie!
    I just got the FL 1 to 4!! They look great!
    I would like to write a review in spanish on a Chilean forum. It’s that ok?
    FLApp it’s good, but the paper books are amazing! I hope we see the last books of the series!

    Thanks for all!

  21. Hi Ikaros - not only okay, we would be forever indebted to you for your review. I'll send Jamie round to be your personal house elf from now on :) Don't forget to let us have the link when the review is up!

  22. I'm happy to announce that DM magazine issue #34 (out in April) will have a complete review of Fabled Lands 1-4 in their new edition ^_^ Any hopes for a Blood Sword reprint too?

  23. Great news, Ciro - reviews are what we need most of all. Especially if the review is a good one! Blood Sword could happen, we'd like to do it, but it's all going to be contingent on the sales figures for FL 1-4. Can print gamebooks be a viable 21st century business? We'll find out :)

  24. well, the writer is very enthusiastic, is first comment was 'exceptional!