Dispatches:
The Latest News from Atlas Games

Headlines

Thrice-Told Tales Hook: Sequels and Threequels

In the mood for a sequel?
Thrice-Told Tales is a collection of linked adventures, featuring the long-term consequences of events that pull the troupe back into the lives of those they previously met. In any Ars Magica saga, returning to older stories is a terrific way to encourage a world that feels real and reminds the players that their choices matter.
Thrice-Told Tales’ model of three-act stories that play out in individual episodes scattered over years is one you can use for your own sagas. After the first few stories in a saga, you might consider looking back at the characters, covenants, companions, and conspirators who made those stories exciting, and write out a list of the choices that the player characters made. Would the baron, freed from a Faerie enchantment, seek to bring war against Faeries later? Or would he send his trusted agents to find protective talismans against Faeries, thus coming into potential conflict with the troupe years later?
A villain who did not die in a previous story might return. A location of great significance may chang in intervening years, now holding greater secrets. An item or treasured tractatus might go missing, just when the covenant is called up on to return it to those from whom they first acquired it. The possibilities for using what came before as the engine of future adventures are endless, and make even the simplest stories richer and more memorable.
If you’re looking for a place to start, check out or return to Tales of Mythic Europe and Hooks, both of which contain short scenarios just asking to be expanded and re-visited!



Thrice-Told Tales is Arriving in Stores

Many adventure collections present stories that entertain the players for one or two sessions but rarely do they get to see the long-term effects of their heroic actions. In Thrice-Told Tales, the actions of the troupe have long-term consequences for their characters and covenants. 

For the first time, this Ars Magica Fifth Edition book contains five adventures, each presenting issues and situations that cannot be fully resolved in a single story, but which return to draw the characters back in years later. The choices made in earlier scenarios create a tapestry of later outcomes, a saga stitched in threads of the Divine, the Infernal, the Faerie, and the Magical. Each is a sequence in three acts, drawing on characters and locations that come alive only over the many-year campaigns Ars Magica is famous for.

Thrice-Told Tales features stories by Christian Roesenkjaer Andersen, David MacGregor, Christian Jensen Romer, Matt Ryan, and Mark Shirley. Cover illustration by Christian St. Pierre; interior illustration by Brett Barkley, Jason Cole, Jenna Fowler, Jethro Lentle, and Christian St. Pierre, with cartography by Matt Ryan.



Brevi Annuntiatione Ars Magicae

That translates to "A brief announcement of Ars Magica" in clumsy Latin. The grogs have been in the scriptorium again, messing around with my inks, but I am pleased to reveal that at last the digital version of AG0307 Hooks is finally available through our worthy partners Warehouse 23 and Paizo.

You may also be excited to know that AG0312 Thrice-Told Tales has hit our warehouses and our turb captain Travis is preparing it for widespread release. More news on this book soon.

Pax vobis, beati finis hebdomadis, fellow magi & companions! Peace be upon you and have a blessed end of the week.

Ropecon Interview

What did John and I REALLY think about our trip to Finland for Ropecon? Check out our post-con interview to find out!



Ropecon

I had the pleasure of being Guest of Honor at Ropecon in Helsinki, Finland last weekend. My husband John, Atlas Games' President, came along as my +1, and we had an amazing time together on our first real vacation since our oldest kids were born (almost 6 years ago!). The sauna parties at Ropecon are legendary, of course, but it was actually the many smaller things that made the trip really rewarding to me.

The friendliness of the people was the first thing that struck me, starting with our guide Jukka Seppanen and including the many convention-goers and staffers we met. Jukka spent three days driving us around town, arranged for a private tour of the Seurasaari open-air museum led by a guide who was a friend of his, and was amazingly patient with our tendency to take all day at museums that any reasonable person would be through in a couple hours. Back at the convention, all of my seminars had really excellent attendance, and the questions from the audiences were frequent and engaged. Staff was eager to help us, and they made us feel like a part of the Ropecon family from the very start.

The familiarity of the landscape was another thing that struck me on our trip. John and I kept comparing the trees, the rocky shorelines, and even the overcast spring weather to Minnesota's north shore, where we live. Suddenly we realized why it was that so many Finns ended up settling here ... they found a place that felt like home, and stayed there!

But it was the differences that were the most surprising, like the folk dancing at Saturday's ball that was the culmination of two days of convention-run lessons, the number of LARPs in the program, the rocking chairs in the bathrooms for nursing mothers, the blackmiths who had a working forge set up at their booth outside the convention center, the fact that attendees actually sleep in designated rooms at the convention center, and the way that sauna schedules are published in the program!

It was a wonderful, eye-opening experience, and one I'd recommend to anyone who has the chance to go. Ropecon is definitely worth the trip!