Friday, May 1, 2020

Weird Revisited: A World Unconquered

I originally uncovered this map in 2013...

Sword & Sorcery comics of the seventies usual got around to supplying a map at some point, and Claw the Unconquered was no exception. Though it ran only 12 issues (from 1975 to 1978), Claw featured a map in issue #5.  Wikipedia seems to think Pytharia is the name of Claw's world--and it may be--but it's also the name of one of the country's in the "Known World," as you can see. Interestingly, Claw shares this world with another sword-wielding DC hero: Starfire, who's part Red Sonja and part Killraven, living in a post-apocalyptic alien-overrun future.

Anyway, I'm pretty sure there's some game inspiration in this.


Dungeons and Possums said...

I've gotta say (with a probably ridiculous amount of love for forgotten comics) that I find this specific map kind of underwhelming in content, but that washed out color printing is so wonderful and floods me with nostalgia it seems kind of like a wash in the end - the nostalgia will do the work 😉

Tamás Kisbali said...

Starfire is quite good, it's a pity they cancelled it :(

JB said...

Okay, so, I have never heard of Claw, Starfire, or Killraven until reading this nothing, zero, zilch. And I just spent close to an hour reading their stories, publication histories, and searching up images of their various characters on the internet.

Wow. My kind of fiction.

At least, with regard to premise and setting, this is the kind of thing I've been trying to create in my own fantasy world, right down to Killraven's "battling back from Martian Conquest." While, to be fair, I take a lot of inspiration from John Christopher's "Tripod" series (whose books were serialized, comic form, in Boys Life magazine back in the day), a lot of the more twisted aspects (humans as combo food supply, genetic experiment, gladiatorial entertainment) probably owe as much to the later Micronauts comics (also done by Bill Mantlo...I think) which I loved.

I had no idea that the same kind of material I'm trying to recreate has already been done in multiple series. The fact that you can do Gamma World without the overt silliness...well, it gives me hope that I'm not truly cracked in the brain.

Now I'm just going to have to find me some collected editions.

JB said...

OH...and regarding the map (the *ahem* point of your post):

I think this is great. And it's a great example for all would be world-building DMs out there that you don't have to have some sort of masterwork of geography and artistic talent to create an adequate setting/staging area for your fantasy planet. Half a dozen territories and a few interesting names (The Sea of Shame!) are plenty to start with, and you can flesh the thing out from there!

I'm currently reading MZB's The Shattered Chain, and wishing there was a decent map included.

[probably could find a fan-made one on the internet if I googled a bit]

Trey said...

At least you're not cracked in this respect! :D

That tripods adaptation in Boy's Life was great.