The folks at Dream Realm Storytellers are taking a deep dive into the darker side of the alignment chart. Corpus Malicious, a new book being brought to life via Kickstarter, explores ‘evil’ for both player and DM alike. Intended as a supplement for 5e, this book aims to deliver a wealth of material for any fantasy roleplaying group.
The goal of the campaign is to be able to deliver a new 400 page supplement of evil content. Whether it’s information on how to crank up your villainy as a player or more in-depth schemes for dungeon masters, there’s plenty of scope. As one would expect in a good sourcebook the intent is to deliver tons of lore, new races, archetypes, spells and monsters; all of which have an evil bent.
It’s good to be bad
I have to admit that I’m not big into 5e DnD. I’m not one of those old beardy gamer types grumbling about how things were back in the day. I’ve played a bit of 5e and I liked what Wizards have done with it. It feels like a modern up to date version of ADnD 2e – a game that I played a whole bunch for years. I actually joined a new game not that long ago. What does any of this have to do with Corpus Malicious? Well just because I don’t play a certain system, doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy or pick up sourcebooks with potential uses elsewhere.
I’ve read a bunch of ‘Book of Evil’ type products over the years and they’ve ranged from good to terrible. In an increasingly crowded marketplace, shock factor alone simply doesn’t cut it. Given my thoughts on the alignment system, you would be forgiven for thinking this wouldn’t be my cup of tea. I stumbled onto this via conversations regarding the Sviland campaign book, by the same team, and as there was a free sample download available it was worth a look see.
When bad looks good
If the demo/sample is anything to judge the final product on, the book will look very good. The art and visuals are very nice throughout if a little disturbing at times. It goes without saying that the suggested audience tag is not simply lip service. Some of the contents may seem distasteful or schlocky for some, but I think overall it’s not intended to be purposefully provocative or offensive. At the end of the day, it’s a book about fantasy horror. Keep that in mind and you’ll be okay.
It’s not a gripe per se but I should mention that there are certain turns of phrase and choice of wording which threw me a little. Nothing which serves to deter you from getting the jist or understanding, just down to a different linguistic background. It’s hard to gauge how useful a book like this would be to me personally overall but I could easily see me enjoying a read through none the less.
Mindabar – The City of Malice
It would be remiss of me not to also mention the upcoming setting of Mindabar. You can’t have a good evil campaign without a good evil setting right? You can read more about it here but the TL;DR is that Mindabar is a kind of pocket realm of vile nastiness which floats around seeking new planes to corrupt and feed upon. The art shown, like the pic below, is incredibly evocative and puts me in mind of forgotten cyclopean cities or places like Melnibone.
Let us know your thoughts on this campaign below or join in the discussion over on our Facebook page. You can also check out the Dream Realm Storytellers page where you can see more examples of art and keep up to date with all the chat.