David HargraveI got introduced to David A. Hargrave's Arduin rules / setting / exquisite insanity very late. But, quickly became a huge fan. Of the man and of the creative crazy he produced.
Luckily (and inevitably) a small partnership of Arduin fans and gamers formed Emperor's Choice to keep Arduin materials available and create "new works based on his ideas and world setting to fans worldwide".
One of those new products is the 4th "generation" Arduin ruleset, Arduin Eternal ($75, sounds like a lot but 800+ page hardback! Contemporary RPG books are $35-$60 for ~300pgs). While ordering I discovered the World Book of Khaas ($70 and 800+ more pages this time focused on world/setting) and added that to my cart as well. A little while later the world book arrived but no Arduin. It had sold out and I hadn't ordered quick enough to be in first group. Meh, these things happen. No biggie and good for them. Arduin Eternal arrived some time later.
That was months ago. Last week I was suprised to find another copy of Arduin Eternal in my mail box. Guess there was a mix up with ordering system and something triggered the "this guy never got his order completed" flag. So, I email Emperor's Choice saying "Hey, I got this extra copy". Not suggesting I'd mail it back (but I would if that's what they wanted). Left it open for them to decide, hoping they would say keep it. Then I could give/lend and infect others with the Arduin bug.
This is the response I got.
"There was no mistake with the second book coming to you. The book you just received is a replacement for the first one you bought. Take a look at the new book, this is the second version, it is a much better layout and revisions. Please let me know what you think."
George De Rosa
I've become so jaded to RPG companies regularly releasing new editions, often with incremental and/or arbitrary and/or self-serving and/or retarded changes, and telling gamers "yeah you should totally buy X hundreds of dollars of books to replace the ones you bought from us last year". Sending me a free replacement $75 book flipping blows my mind. Really a huge, dedicated fan of Emperor's Choice now. They'll have to drive over my dog or the like to undue the amount of good-will they just earned.
And, George, I think Emperor's Choice bloody well rocks.
Plumb the depths of the rich world of Arduin. Engage as the emotionless insectiod Phraint. Game in the free wheeling city of Talismond. Dash through battle with a hot-blooded Amazon. Fear deadly Deodanths, time-stranded from the future. Sally forth the Khai Shang, strand on Khaas from the stars. Make your mark as a mercenary captain from the border wars in the West. Trust in the 10,000 gods - take up their banner as a Priest, Paladin, Saint or Witch Hunter. Learn Eldarin, the language of the ancient Kthoi, weaving enigmatic runes. Journey to the city of Melkalund to learn at the underground college of technology. Dare life as a street touch, fluent in the unarmed fighting arts of Rhingorda. Take on the world as a Techno, master of technology and engineering. Hound and hunt the wicked with the iron will of a Witch Hunter. Wield the wild magik, mastered by the great mages of Ghorfar. Spill blood as a gladiator fresh from the 100 battles of Ithalos or conquer the fighting pits of Viruelandia. Its all yours and more.
The World Book of Khass
The World Book of Khaas, Legendary Lands of Arduin is an exciting, 800+ page volume a literal encyclopedia of the world of Khaas and the country of Arduin. The World of Khaas, Legendary Lands of Arduin is a massive volume based on David Hargrave's work, once and for all throwing wide the gates on the Plateau of Forever; allowing entry not only to Arduin, but into the very world.