Article Archives

  • TV and Film
    TV and Film

    Let’s Talk About… Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    It was the final big ‘cinema event’ of 2019 and has divided critics and audiences. Was it a suitable, faithful send-off or an incoherent mess? Our team discuss the ‘final’ film in the Star Wars mythos. Best read once you’ve seen the film, as we discuss all the plot twists!   Allen: The text crawl irritated me. The text introduction is a Star Wars staple, but the content really did feel like a massive shift of plot premise from the end of the last…

  • Podcast
    Podcast

    Parallel Worlds Issue 8

    - by Buanzo

    This month, we catch ’em all, get to know the largest online community of D&D artists, learn about roleplaying’s most overlooked step, find out why space magic is so compelling, interview Anna Smith Spark and Isaac Childres, play some job simulators, and reassess the Star Wars prequels and Lost in Space. As ever, there’s our usual range of book and board game reviews, as well as original fiction. 00:00:17 – Editorial 00:03:13 – Lost in Space: an enduring legacy of sci-fi brilliance 00:17:29 – Space magic: the popularity and plausibility of the Future Mythic 00:29:20 – Board game review: Res…

  • Tabletop Games
    Tabletop Games

    Play Safe: consent in gaming

    - by Chris Cunliffe

    This month, Chris Cunliffe discusses some topical issues in roleplaying and the concept of consent around the gaming table.  Roleplaying games (RPGs) have come a long way since 1974, when Dungeons & Dragons was first released. The hobby has become much more accepted than it once was, and standards have improved commensurately. Today, many players crave different things in their games — what evolved from wargames into a system that was intended to simulate small unit tactics now demands so much more: more complex…

  • Thinkpiece
    Thinkpiece

    Creative Equality

    - by Ben Potts and Jane Clewett

    When it comes to female representation in the media, it’s easy to think that we’ve never had it so good. But on average a fictional lead character is still straight, white, and male, and so are the creatives telling their story. We take a look at this issue in books, films, and video games, and at how genre fiction in particular is tackling the challenge of more gender-inclusive storytelling.   A page turned? The vast majority of the ‘canon’ of English literature — the…

  • Video Games
    Video Games

    The mysterious case of Dentara Rast

    - by Allen Stroud

    A few years ago, as part of my work on the Elite Dangerous Roleplaying Game (EDRPG), I wrote a set of short stories which are still available on the EDRPG website as adventure hooks for gamesmasters. One of those stories was a continuation of the story of Dentara Rast and the uprising on Tiliala. This was part of the plot of Frontier: First Encounters, released in 1995, and set in the 3250s. One of the key story missions of the game was ‘Assassinate Dentara…

  • Tabletop Games
    Tabletop Games

    Review: Lifeform

    - by Christopher Jarvis

    One of my favourite things to come out of the 40th anniversary year of Ridley Scott’s classic sci-fi horror Alien is, by coincidence, a detailed homage and simulation. I don’t know if it was planned for release on the anniversary, but it’s certainly timely. Lifeform, published in 2019 by Hall or Nothing Productions, is designer Mark Chaplin’s detailed love letter to Alien. And let me be clear: we’re talking about the first movie. No soldiers, no weapons — only fear and death in the…