Podcast news

Slight change...three of the last four supernovae seen from Earth were all in a single constellation.

In Arabic, it's called the Tattooed Hand.


Glad you like it.

I never heard of that game!

My approach was straightforward, wholly contained within the cosmology of Mythic Europe.

To the extent that astrology is real, the stars are the embodiment of fate. From the perspective of Criamon, the universe is fated to imprison its inhabitants forever. So if you want to break out of the prison you must break fate which means you must also break the stars, or at least change their pattern. Destroy destiny and free the people.

Perhaps the heraldry of this Path of the Lost Cause includes Stars and Bars! :slight_smile:

(Although all Criamon Paths are lost causes, since House Criamon has tried and failed for the same reasons every cycle.)



Oh, it's lovely. I thought you might like it.

I'm going another way with it, because the novae that have been seen are both in constellations which are punishments (Cassiopeia and Aesculapius) but that's lovely and I'm going to link back to your post in the text when it goes live, because honestly I think yours is the better take on the whole thing.

That being said, I've been playing Fallen London for a year and a bit now, so if I can't write something so close to the Liberation of Night (which is what people playing FL call the genocidal war against the stars). I haven't played the newest game, Sunless Skies, yet, but even the fragments of things I read about it are pretty close to what I've been doing already in Scilly (the Atratea, for example, seem very similar to Logoi in the new game: embodied, living, astral words that act as monstrous guards).

So, again, I love it, Ken. Thanks.

Changes to RSS feed length.


If the older episodes had been dropping off your podcatcher, or had just not been available, it's because I set the RSS Feed length variable wrongly (although, to be fair, 100 episodes did seem like a lot at the time).

It's fixed now, so you can binge the whole lot, if you like. In Pocketcasts I needed to unsub and resub.

Gang, the podcast is grinding a bit at the moment, so if you have any ideas for epsiodes, they wil be gladly recieved.

Apologies to anyone who has seen this on the Reddit page, but it's faster to copy and paste:

I'm laying out the themes for my Ars Magica podcast for the next few months, so if you have an idea you'd like me to cover, please suggest it. Currently the archive is at youtube.com/watch?v=6D7cDwVJX8g&t=1s

I'd just like to stress, so as not to disappoint people, that I wrote as part of a team, and so I'm not across every aspect of the setting. Even the books I worked on are (with one exception) at most one-third my writing, so I can't really dig into the "why" of some of the other writers' choices.

Things that are already happening:

once a month you'll get a legend from the Scilly Isles, which will eventually be incorporated into the free Cornwall pdf. The current ashcan of it contains the material added until Dec 2018 and is here: timothyferguson.files.wordpress ... tion-1.pdf

once a month you'll get a bit of Chinese folklore from "Tales From A Chinese Studio". This takes the place of the Lord Dunsany episodes I was doing for the last few years and will last about six months.

once a month you'll get a monster. I'm working through my backlog of monsters now, but they tend to get away from me a bit. The latest stab at the backlog is timothyferguson.wordpress.com/2 ... arch-2019/

Episode 200 is already written. It's 40 minutes of early Cornish horror (published in 1924, and so newly available in the US public domain). It has an Avenger of Evil (a type of demon that pretends its sent from God to punish wickedness) in it. I won't be doing the huge episdoes every multiple of 25 anymore, because they are exhausting and people don't seem to prefer them, in pure download terms.

Once I get through the monster backlog, I'm going to try and congeal together all the Lord Dunsany episodes into a pdf with stats by me and art by Sidney Syme (who did the original art for Dunsany - it's public domain now).

My troupe really found the episode on Muto Aquam "Slightly Unnatural Water" to be useful if you have any more insights into that aspect of the game. I know you generally seem to focus more on setting aspects than core rules crunch in the podcast.


The Aquam element or the stretching the rules about element?

THanks, glad you found that useful...

Gang, I've put a poll up about the direction of the podcast over at https://www.patreon.com/TimothyFerguson

Basically, I read books for Librivox, and what I read tends to become part of the podcast. Originally they were separate, but I tend to like folklore, you know?

So, if you'd like to vote on what sort of thing I should be reading for LV, you'd really be voting on what sort of thing I should be prepping for the podcast. Poll ends in a week - non paetrons are welcome to vote.

And, an update on progress:

The podcast's numbers are lower than they were, but still good enough for me to keep it going for another six months before a new review.

I have 14 episodes in recorded on Libsyn and ready to go. Not all of them have stats written. The theme for December is Christmas. The monster of the month has already gone live on these forums, over at 30 creatures for November

I am planning to get together a 2019 omnibus like in previous years.
Unless I have a better idea, episode 250 (in April) will be a collection of all the monsters statted so far into a single pdf document. I think its about 30.

The Patreons have voted, and we know what the focus will be after we leave Cornwall.

Facetious Nights it is. Just to explain, Facetious Nights is the first collection of faerie stories in the modern style. It's Venetian, as is what's arguably the second one. (the Pentamarone). They are both after the Ars period, but in the topsy turviness of Mythic Europe, they are the originals of many of the stories you know.

What gave the realm of faerie its distinctive twist in Venice? Next year, you'll find out.

The most powerful faerie ever mentioned in Ars Magica is the Player of Games and Venice is his board. What moves can he make, and what are the stakes? Will you play against him, or be his pawns?

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I've just found a load of folklore for Venice. It'll take a while to digest because it's history, not the fairy tales I was prepping for. Still, thanks for voting Venice, guys.

The doge in 1220 seriously considered moving the capital of the Republic to Constantinople, and his wife was the first princess to be dogeressa since the Rotting Princess.

And the Rotting Princess is important. She's where everything starts, where Mythic Venice and Historical Venice part ways.

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Looks like Theodora Doukaina Selvo was a victim of mixing reality and fiction latest in the 14th century. Maria Argyropoulina, Peter Damian's likely Rotting Princess, died with husband and son already in 1007 of one of the many 'plagues' afflicting Venice. Both Byzantine princesses were held in high honors in Venice.

The combined 2019 transcript is up.

It's 160+ pages of, well, basically my meanderings, and has the stats for 23 monsters, going back to the very early days of the podcast.

Goals for this year:

  • we are still working through that patch where I needed to use 5 months worth of space in one month, but I'm hoping to spread those episodes out and fill the blanks with smaller, more tightly written pieces.
  • Venice / Northern Italian folklore.
  • 1 statted monster per month.
  • For Episode 250 I'm going to recut the Cornwall pdf, to include all of the stuff added since I wrote the ashcan.
  • I should just get all the monsters together in one pdf at some point.

Half formed ideas

  • I need to juggle what I'm doing in Venice with the idea of making the Cornwall material into material for new players. I mean, effectively it is now: if you play the Sabrina's Rest material as your base, you are in easy range of the plot hooks for Cornwall, but there are three saga ideas I could roll out as full adventures (Scilly and the missing Criamons for Mysteries, Looe and the Infernal Saint of Sorrow for combat and Tintagel and the Emperor for politics).

One change:

I updated "Little Demons" from 16 monsters to 28, and while I was doing it I was thinking of doing one more each for spirits and faeries.

Canva, it turns out, now lets me make pdfs that are 100 pages long, so I'll just be combining them into one file. The working title is "Half Remembered Monsters". The Demons are done, but I'd like to revist them to say "I took this creature from this story and it is in Episode XX of the podcast. I've moved the creatures from episode order to realm then alphabetical.

This is a lot of work, so it's likely to be episode 250. Cornwall will be...somewhere else. 275? 300?

Actually now I think about it, that will make GFF easier this year: instead of making monthly files and sewing them together at the end, I can just make one big file, cut the monthly bit out, and then at the end just merged two files, one for each half of the year.

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I discovered that you were doing this recently. I did not find a way to have the episodes in publication or thematic order in your blog. Where can I find this? The amount of info you have generated is massive and I would like to have an index for it. Probably it is around, but I was unable to find it. Thanks!

Well, the blog is badly maintained. In the old days you could just type "monster" and you'd get all of the posts tagged "monster". Similarly faerie, demon and so on. I need to fix that. It shouldn't be that hard to do - I think I could crack it in about three hours of work...I'll give it a go at lunchtime at work and see what I can manage. When I say "three hours" I only mean the GFF posts - the blog goes back almost ten years and there all kinds of stuff lost in the depths of it that isn't really worth indexing.

The episodes are in publication order in the blog. It may not look like it, because the number you get at the start of the episode titles in your podcatcher is my production order. Basically I originally hoped to get things out in that order, but I kept accidentally sending out episodes early, then replacing them, and so the numbers are a bit tangled up. On the lower left there's also an Archive pulldown, which lets you jump to a particular month.

On Youtube,there are some playlists by theme, but, again, I've not really kept them up to date. Again, it's not hard to do - it just takes time.

I just wanted to say I really enjoy your podcast and all the work you’ve put into it. Several months ago I started running a game; was able to use some of your Cornwall stuff. It’s been really helpful.


Thanks, I hope to get the Cornwall stuff in an even more coherent shape this year.

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Just found a lovely new little monster as I finish off the Scillonian material.

The Scillonians had a saint who granted shipwrecks, and for their veneration of her, God washed the entire population of one island off into the sea with a tidal wave.

So, she's a False God, probably.

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Nice. A faerie can also work. Nothing heightens emotion like a tsunami. A kind of Master Kelpie?
But false god fits the bill perfectly, yup.