Fantasy Faire 2014 has opened its gates. This year, there are no fewer than 11 regions to explore (although at the time of writing, the Palace of Tears had yet to open to public access, and I encountered a considerable amount of lag on the neighbouring Fairelands Junction when trying to sneak a peek over the wall…
As always, there is a lot to see and explore, and I hope to be able to bring a round of updates as the week unfolds. For now, here’s a brief set of highlights, together with some sketches from my pad, grabbed as I explored the regions as a part of the bloggers’ preview.
Created by Beq Janus and sponsored by NeoVictoria (Asil Ares).
Asperatus, a mighty airship built by wealthy merchants and once both their home and seat of commerce. Now, in later years, the Asperatus sits as the mainstay of an unlikely floating colony, drawing power from the turbulent clouds over which it sits and providing a centre of trade as well as a floating home.
As you explore the shops and stores, slung beneath great gasbags and wander the catwalks linking them, keep an eye out for strange goings-on, particularly from Monday May 5th onwards. For it is to Asperatus that a renegade aristocrat and an evil scientist will flee after wreaking havoc in the power centre of the NeoLondon Cathedral. Determined to bring them to justice, a group of NeoVictorians are hard on their heels (role-play to commence in NeoVictoria on Thursday May 1st, before transferring to Asperatus).
Created by Marcus Inkpen/ Sharni Azalee and sponsored by The Looking Glass
Blackwater Glenn, once a vibrant community, is now being slowly reclaimed by nature as swamplands slowly encroach onto the land and under the old buildings. But not all is in a state of decay as gorgeous flowers and mysterious plants emerge sporadically throughout the swamp and pathways of open water lead to the centerpiece, a giant blossoming tree. Tread the wooden walkways carefully and rest assured that the surviving buildings will not collapse on your head. Traders and merchants still thrive here, and there is the hope of rebirth hidden within.
Be wary of the pirates, however. Forced ashore to seek the means to repair their damaged ship, they have set-up a tavern within the Glenn. You can be sure of a warm and friendly welcome there and enjoy a good mug of grog – but you might also find yourself leaving with your purse missing considerably more coin than you may have spent – if your purse doesn’t mysteriously leave your pocket first!
The Fairy Court
Created by Elicio Ember and sponsored by Cerridwen’s Cauldron.
The Fairy Court, a land of light and dark, of water and tree, where mystical folk offer greetings and wares. Here is a place to tarry and renew under the spreading boughs of the tree of light and dark, its entwined trunks reaching up into the heavens. Wander the pavilions and walkways, sample the water and the wares. Above all, to be at peace.
I confess to having a soft spot for Elicio’s works, which have never ceased to amaze me over the years, and this Fantasy Faire is no exception. Were I to be a creature of myth or fantasy, the Fairy Court is the place I’d call my home among the Fairelands.
Created by Alrunia Ahn/ Eldowyn Inshan/ Sweetgwendoline Bailey and sponsored by Creators of Fantasy.
To set foot in Heavenslough is to set foot in another world, where the unexpected is to be expected. down under the leafy canopy, the forest is the home and playground for sprites and secretive fairy folks, where ancient stilt houses sit above the marshlands and platforms and houses sit amidst the leafy boughs of the titanic trees. Above all this, sit rocky plateaus rising into the heavens…
Created by Jaimy Hancroft and sponsored by Dwarfins
Hope’s Horizon stands, like the fabled Minas Tirith, with its back to the sheer walls of a mountain, its streets winding up through stair and path to houses and stores which cling to the sheer rock, leading the visitor ever upward until at last the high plateau is reached. It is here, above the very clouds themselves, that the Citadel sits, together with the White Tree.
Jaimy Hancroft’s homage to Tolkien caught my imagination from the moment I first read about it, and it does not disappoint. The city is beautifully scaled to present a depth in keeping with the height of the build. The citadel on the mountain’s flat summit is the crowning piece, the echoes of Tolkien clear within the design, which also maintains its own individuality and the mark of Fantasy Faire.