Note: This is a conceptual work. Real zine, fake game.

This zine is dedicated to one of the most ambitious failed boardgames of all time: Brutal Lands. Created by Richard Widemire in 1986, it was based on the 1929 fantasy novel “A Most Brutal Land” by Milton St. Sullivan. The game was released in November of 1987 and quickly became the subject of a lawsuit as it was revealed Widemire never secured the proper rights from the St. Sullivan estate. The game was pulled from shelves within weeks and the court case dragged on for years. When it was finally resolved in 1992, a year after Widemire’s untimely death, the judge ordered all unsold copies to be destroyed. It is estimated fewer than 500 hundred copies were ever sold, with only a handful of complete copies in existence. I am fortunate enough to have one of those copies.

In accordance with the court ruling I am only allowed to reference “rules, mechanics, and game elements” and provide what are termed “game extensions”. Therefore within this zine, along with art and writing, you’ll find some new rules and — in this issue — a new class card.

Purchase Forge of Fists #1 on Gumroad


Copyright © 2005-2021 Graham Cranfield