Archive for the ‘warhammer’ Category

Black Library recently released a deluxe and a limited version of Arjac Rockfist: Anvil of Fenris by Ben Counter.  The Deluxe version was delegated to only 500 copies and priced at a staggering $120.00 per unit, while the Limited was $60.00 per unit and set at 3,000 copies.  This is the second book in, what I consider their premium limited edition series, Lords of the Space Marines. The first was Mephiston: Lord of Death, which was only released as a limited edition and sold 2434 books.

You probably are thinking the price for these books are simply ludicrous, however, as a collector I’m willing to spend the extra dough especially on these Lords of the Space Marine books. The quality of the book is impeccable, the casing is sturdy, the added artwork is exceptional, and so far the market value of these books continues to grow astronomically.

I’m going to throw out a few of my shoddy pictures, comparing the deluxe version of Arjac Rockfist, to that of the limited Mephiston.

 

Here is the pair of them, side by side in their original cases. The Arjac case is stunning and the entire package weighs double that of Mephiston, it is both a little taller in height and twice the size in width.

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Another bonus with Ajac, is on all four sides of the case is additional artwork.

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Here is the entire package for the Deluxe version of Arjac Rockfist: A stone-effect sarcophagus box, the hardback novella, an exclusive mini-book, and an exclusive resin rune shield.

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This right here is the unique little Inlay Board, holding the audio CD and protecting the rest of the books inside.

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Now we can see the two comparisons fully between a Deluxe version Arjac and a Limited Mephiston. This is also when I become a tad displeased as I realized that the additional artwork card is only provided within the Limit Editions, but not in the $60.00 extra Deluxe version which makes no sense to me.

 

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Here are the actual books with their dust jackets removed.

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The books themselves are near identical in size and length.

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The Signature / Limited Edition pages are near identical for the pair also.

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The internal artwork on these is pretty jazzy.

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Here is the additionally included chapbooks.

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Anvil has the significant advantage here, with an additional short story and some artwork.

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So, my final thoughts are this: If you don’t have the extra $60.00 for the deluxe edition, you truly aren’t missing out on that much and both are stellar pieces to throw on your Warhammer bookshelves as eye candy. It really boils down to how much of a fanatical collector you are and do you want to spend the extra cash for a thicker case, even more exclusive limited availability, and a few other perks. The limited Arjac is identical to the limited Mephiston and that is why I used it for a comparison.  Interesting note, as of right now, you can still purchase the limited Arjac while the Deluxe sold out in hours and sells on ebay for double the original price.

Sigmar’s Blood is one interesting little novella that incorporates much of what makes Warhammer Fantasy such an excellent universe, but at times the read can be a tad jumpy and overfilled with characters.
Mannfred Von Carstein is hell-bent on reclaiming the land of Sylvania and a crusade comprised of only the most devout followers of their various religions has a chance of stemming this evil. At the forefront of the crusade is Grand Theogonist Volkmar, who at times seems to have the ability to shoot out bolts of pure faith in order to banish the undead or heal the wounded. Volkmar was a strong character, but my favorite was the battle entrenched witch hunter, Von Korden. Von Korden barely slows or takes a rest in his pursuit to destroy one of Carstein’s allies, a Necromancer named Ghorst. We find out later that Von Korden is so driven because he is seeking retribution for the murder of his family.
The opening description of the Necromancer Ghorst is especially noteworthy and I think it really exemplifies Phil Kelly’s imaginative writing ability which is the strength throughout the novel focused on the gory details of battle and the undead. Ghorst is literally dragged in on a rotting bone carriage, pulled stuttering across the lands by hitched-up undead. Inside the carriage are mounds of putrefied and still squirming corpses, all the while Ghorst is singing a song and a bell on the carriage is tolling out.
Next is Jovi Sunscryer a powerful wizard of the Light Order and his two acolytes. Wait what, more characters? Yes, more characters, there are tons more characters in this novella of only one-hundred and twenty some odd pages. Flagellants, Crusaders, Mercenaries, The Silver Bullets, Knights of the Blazing Sun, Sigmar’s Sons, Tattersouls, a group of militia men from The Drunken Goat, Reiksguard, and a few Royal Altdorf Gryphites. The funny thing is the number of men from these accompaniments only total around a hundred and ten or so and I think we are introduced to about half of them.
The other disorienting bit in Sigmar’s Blood for me is the battle locations. We are continually jumping from one ruined site to another in some semi-epic confrontation with the undead but I’m never really sure how anyone ended up there.
Despite these small annoyances, Sigmar’s Blood is actually a real treat to read. Beautifully graphic descriptions of decay, death, and gore. A solid, fast paced read from one scene to the next, if a bit jumpy. Then the ending, another Black Library story that leaves so damn many strings left either uncut or that simply fall out of the readers hands into the lands of imagination. Sigmar’s Blood is most definitely worth the read if you can stomach a few minor faults.