Charlie’s Talisman Project

After seeing the image above posted on Twitter by Sloth Comics, I just had to find out about the copy of Talisman 3rd Edition that was in the picture. Not least because a cuddly sloth toy was playing the game…

After a little digging, it turned out that the game was the home-brew creation of one Charles Cutting, who I managed to contact through his portfolio pages.

This superbly illustrated version of the game came about after Charlie had been introduced to (and subsequently hooked on!) the game through being lent a copy of the original Games Workshop 3rd Edition of the game, plus all of its expansions by a friend.

Charlie explains:

“It occurred to me that we would have to give it back to him on his return and so I hit on the idea of a home-made set. I started with the boards and then the cards came next, all done in watercolour and ink.

One day, surfing the internet in my office when I should have been working, I came across a website called Talisman Island (!) with lots of cool resources for new cards. I decided to expand my set accordingly, as I went along. Producing 300+ illustrations is what really got me back into illustration from being a watercolourist and oil painter.

I persuaded a graphic designer friend of mine to help create templates for all the cards and we scanned my original art. Along with my then girlfriend we designed the backs of the cards and wrote in each card instruction on our new laptop.”

Charlie kindly agreed to allow me show off his creation, and supplied a number of images so that visitors could see the amount of work that went into this project.

Talisman Main Board

You can see that the game is based on the 3rd Edition of Talisman as there is no Inner Region on the main board. This was replaced in this edition by a small deck of cards to simulate the journey through the Wizards’s Tower, which was then replaced in a later expansion by The Dragon’s Tower.

Charlie has used the dead space after The Causeway for storing the various decks used in the game, which is a great idea!

Tavern & Temple Warlock’s Cave & City Gates
Toll Bridge & Hidden Valley Graveyard & Oasis

The images above show some of the better known landmarks in the game, and I think that the artwork is reminiscent of the Polish version of the game, Magia i Miecz.

I especially love the nod to Tim the Enchanter from Monty Python and the Holy Grail at the Warlock’s Cave, and that table at the Tavern looks very welcoming too!

Complete board mockup

Of course, the game wouldn’t be complete without the expansion boards that were released separately as the Dungeon of Doom, City of Adventure and Dragon’s Tower.

To finish off the set, the Dragon King that is perched atop the home-made Dragon’s Tower is the original plastic model from Citadel Miniatures that was made available separately from Games Workshop’s Mail Order Trolls.

Dice with Death Puzzle Lock Taxation Potion of Strength Outlaw
Red Dragon Giant Demon Doppelganger Shade

The artwork that Charlie has created for the game is a mixture of official and home-brew content, and the illustrations are full of colour and character.

You can see more of the art from the game over on his portfolio pages linked at the bottom of the page.

Knight Templar Mini Knight Templar Art

An added benefit of being an accomplished artist is that you can make any of the miniatures you happen to have lying around into the various characters from the game by drawing them yourself.

The Knight Templar is actually from the Dark Heaven Legends range of figures from Reaper Miniatures, and the character illustration is just perfect!

Character Card
Adventure Card Spell Card
Talisman Card Tower Card
Purchase Card Special Card
Dungeon Card Mountain Card
City Card Forest Card

Take a look at Charlie’s portfolio by following the link above where you will find examples of, and links to, his other works in graphic novels and other media.

You will find a selection of his artwork from his Talisman project under “Illustrations > Games“.