The Realms of Legend


Due to the fact that there is now an OFFICIAL boxed expansion that uses the name The Lost Realms, I have changed the name of this project to The Realms of Legend and have remade some of the files to replace any images that use that particular name.

To remove any doubt, the OFFICIAL expansion is a collection of the two Print on Demand expansions, The Nether Realm & The Deep Realms (coincidentally also designed by me!), and both of the UNOFFICIAL expansions – The Realms of Legend & The Realms Untravelled – have been collected with a similar box that is named The Realms of Adventure!

As most of you will know, back in the mists of time, Fantasy Flight Games asked me to design a print on demand expansion for The Dungeon expansion for the Revised 4th Edition of Talisman which ended up as a bridge between The Dungeon and The City expansion called The Deep Realms.

After I’d finished that I got to thinking about a similar expansion for the remaining gap between The Highland and The Woodland expansions, but I wanted it to be something a little different. Sadly, as you will all now know, a corresponding expansion was not to be.

I had planned to make this expansion myself for fans of the game just to finish off the realms, so I asked a favour from Wojciech Rzewuski, a fan of the game and a great artist to boot, to draw up the artwork needed for the Realm cards and set about pondering what would make a fitting expansion.

As often happens. the clock kept ticking onwards and the project was consigned to a folder on my desktop for a time whilst life carried on as it usually does. Then of course we were handed the news that Talisman under FFG would no longer be continued, and talk on the forums came around to the subject of the “missing” expansion.

For a number of reasons I figured it would be a much nicer project if it was to be completed by the larger Talisman community, with a few “ground rules” from myself, which might give people a bit of an understanding of what designing an expansion is like.

I thought about a homage to Talisman 3rd Edition‘s Mountain Realm, where you can search for the legendary Morak’s Hammer when you visit Karak Doom. My idea was to have a number of reasonably powerful, one shot items available at a forgotten dwarven forge that would return to the “Highland side” once used. Not game-breaking items, but something that would be particularly useful when you neared the end of the game.

The “Woodland side” would be a hidden village where the Elder Faeries or Elves reside and they might grant you something mysterious, like a Destiny or a full complement of Spells or more.

The route wasn’t fully fleshed out, but I liked the idea of both realms leading out into the Woods space on the main board which would enable a Character to put his new found booty to use quickly. Entry would be from the obvious spaces on the adjacent boards, with a clear path to the opposite board if you should so wish.

I imagined that it would take the normal PoD formula of around 36/40 small cards with 2/3 large cards and rule sheets, but of course this can be exceeded slightly as we are not fully constrained by budgets.

By coincidence, the very talented Mattias Westlund, the chap behind the music from Talisman: Digital Edition, Talisman: The Horus Heresy and Talisman: Prologue had posted a teaser to his new project, Waters of Redemption, which used a great piece of artwork from an artist called David Revoy.

What interested me most was that the artwork was under Creative Commons, so I decided to check out his portfolio and found some artwork that would be ideal for the project which is very similar to that used in The Woodland expansion, and the best bit being that it could be used if the correct permissions were observed. As no money will be changing hands at all, there should be no problems here, but I will be making sure before anything is released.

As mentioned on the FFG forums, it would be good to find some artwork that can be used in a similar fashion for the “Dwarf” side of the realms along with some that is suitable for some interesting “legendary” items.

Take a look at the images below and then have a read up of the “potted ideas” at the bottom and let’s make something happen!

Wojciech Rzewuski’s artwork featured in Strange Eons 3
The Deep Realms The Lost Realms
The Lost Realms Board
Possible Cards featuring David Revoy’s artwork

The Lost Realms is not necessarily the final name, but it is a nice snappy title. I did ponder Ancient, Old and Shadow, but figured it should be something short and sweet like Deep.

As mentioned above, the basic premise is that there is an ancient dwarven forge hidden in the mountains where you can find legendary weapons. The magical elders live hidden deep in the woods and can grant great bonuses, like destinies etc. I think someone suggested being able to swap characters too which might be fun.

I was thinking that there will be 2 Alternative Endings that will be triggered only by something in the respective realms. I was thinking a monster/boss for the forge, and either the Autumn Tree art above for the elder village, but perhaps the box art from The Woodland would be a better choice for that. I am not 100% convinced that endings are necessary though.

We will need about 20 cards for the “bridge” spaces between the realms. A nice mix of Enemies and other effects would be good. I don’t think these need to be particularly deadly or troublesome like in The Deep Realms.

There will also be about 6 legendary items. Any cards used on the other side will be from existing decks (Destiny?)

I’ll be looking at adding possibly 20 existing cards from The Highland and The Woodland expansions, though any expansion is fair game if the artwork/effect matches the theme.

Cards I have in mind already are Landslide, some Gems and Enemies from the Highland expansion and a similar number from The Woodland. I think we should be using the rules for Dark and Light fate and being Lightbound etc, but might be swayed on this.

I’ve purposely not added any definitive text or titles to the cards above, as they can be a group effort too.

If you find any artwork that is suitable, and is under Creative Commons, please let me know.

Original FFG Forum Post

Discussion Thread at FFG

Wojciech Rzewuski’s Art Portfolio

Mattias Westlund’s Music Portfolio

David Revoy’s Art Portfolio