LOST WARHAMMER: THE OTHER CAMPAIGN

There will be two campaigns – background packs and lots of module-sized adventures – released almost immediately, one by Paul Vernon and the other by Graeme Davis, Jim Bambra and Phil Gallagher.

White Dwarf 81

The campaign by Bambra, Gallagher and Davis is, of course, well known. But what happened to the other one? I don’t recall and cannot find any other mention of it.

The accuracy of the source is perhaps questionable; a few lines earlier it refers to runesingers in WFRP1. However, the named author and promise of almost immediate release might suggest there was something to it.

Perhaps it was to be a WFRP conversion of Vernon’s generic adventure Starstone. Some of the early WFRP adventures in White Dwarf were conversions (The Black Knight, On Ealden Byrgen, Letters from a Foreign Land). Flame would obviously later convert existing adventures to WFRPStarstone had been well reviewed in White Dwarf, and White Dwarf 34 even published a prequel to it. Yet it seems oddly unambitious to launch a new game with a conversion of a four-year-old module.

A more likely possibility is that it was a conversion of Vernon’s unpublished sequel to Starstone, Ristenby Town. At least some of the material for this adventure had possibly been written, but not yet been made public. It might have seemed an easy way to get something in print quickly.

Of course, this is all conjecture and there are many other possible explanations for the quotation that started this post. Does anyone out there know the truth behind it?

This post is part of a series on unpublished Warhammer supplements. The first in the series can be found here.

The next Lost Warhammer post is here.

Title art by John Sibbick. Used without permission. No challenge intended to the rights holders.

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3 thoughts on “LOST WARHAMMER: THE OTHER CAMPAIGN

  1. This is rather a tangled tale. Before I joined GW, Bryan Ansell had been in discussions with Paul Vernon, author of several pretty good WD articles on campaigns and fantasy town design as well as the Starstone supplement. He was going to be one of our key external writers.

    I had been impressed by his articles, but when I read Starstone it left me cold – if memory serves, it consisted of three lovingly-detailed villages in which nothing much happened. Every time, the PCs showed up, spoke to a few villagers, learned of a threat a little way off, and went to bash the dungeon in which the threat resided. I remember observing that it was effectively the same adventure repeated three times, and I don’t think Paul ever forgave me.

    Bryan still wanted him involved, so Jim, Phil, and I tasked him with putting together a proposal for a Norsca supplement. He did a pretty thorough job of creating a Viking sourcebook for WFRP, but like Testubo which was also in development at the same time, it didn’t nail the Warhammer feel and languished in a to-be-developed file before disappearing completely.

    The campaign in question is almost certainly his ill-starred Border Princes campaign. This was before Doomstones and way before A Thousand Thrones, and the area was just shaping up. We had a lot of back and forth with Paul on this, he seemed unable to grasp what we were looking for. We described the area as being like the Wild West, and got an essay back on how the real-life Wild West had only lasted a few years. Trying to reframe our vision, one of us (Phil, I think) described the area as a patchwork of Balkanized states, meaning Balkanized in the political sense rather than the geographical. Paul came back with a lot of writing based on the actual Balkans, showing he had missed the point. Shortly after that, our relationship with him broke down entirely and that was that. But, from the quote you found, it seems that an announcement had already been made.

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    1. Thanks for sharing this. It’s really interesting stuff. I suppose I can now add Lost Warhammer: Norsca and Lost Warhammer: Border Princes to the list!

      I haven’t read Starstone, but I have read the short prequel, Troubles at Embertrees, and I would echo your comments. It seemed to be more about the setting than the story.

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  2. Interesting. I’d never seen this referred to before.

    Reading this prompted me to look at Embertrees and I too can see the village with wilderness and dungeon theme Graeme Davis mentions there. Paul Vernon’s articles on fantasy economies in Best of WD I recall as very well thought out.

    One wonders how a second campaign would have panned out. GW clearly lost interest in WFRP sooner than those planning the WFRP range anticipated and backing had dropped away before the end of TEW. Perhaps a campaign specifically planned for WFRP however would have been more successful than Doomstones? Who can say.

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