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Digital Subscriptions > Tabletop Gaming > Issue Ten > MASTER OF GLOOM


Isaac Childres’ Gloomhaven is one of the most striking board games to hit the tabletop in years, offering a sprawling adventure with highly ambitious legacy elements. More astonishingly, it’s only the designer’s second title. We take a tour around the fantasy world with the fast-rising star

Where did the idea for Gloomhaven’s world and mechanics come from?

Haha, that’s a big question! Gloomhaven’s world just came from a wealth of experience designing my own D&D campaigns, full of weird monsters and bosses. I never used source books and always went for creating my own worlds. I just love building that sort of stuff, so when it came time to dream up a world for Gloomhaven, I was happy to sit down and dream big.

The mechanics came from a variety of places, of course. Using the core concept of a brain-engaging dungeon crawl, I cobbled together mechanics from many different games and refined them until it felt complete and streamlined.

Gloomhaven is one of the first major legacy games not designed with the input of Rob Daviau. Why did you decide to make the title a legacy game?

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About Tabletop Gaming

Cover feature: Bears vs Babies: We chat with Elan Lee about following up Exploding Kittens with this hilarious monster mash-up set to be the summer’s biggest hit. GKR: Heavy Hitters: We take a dive into the world of Giant Killer Robots with senior concept designer Paul Tobin. Infection at Outpost 31: A beautiful adaptation of John Carpenter’s seminal horror film The Thing. Pro gaming special: How champions turned their hobby into a profession. First Martians: Designer Ignacy Trzewiczek guides us through his highly anticipated Adventures on the Red Planet. Tales from the Loop: We talk to the makers of the throwback RPG. The Ultimate Gaming Room: A look at what you should be cramming into your tabletop haven. PLUS • Cooking With Dice: Roleplaying with real-life cookery. • The Occult on the Tabletop: The influence of tarot cards and Ouija board. • Survive: Escape from Atlantis!: We look back at the beloved adventure game. • The Making of… Star Wars X-Wing • Painting Guide: Runewars • A Dungeon Master’s Guide to RPGs • Ten of the Best: 10 Budget Games for Under a Tenner • Introduction to… Pathfinder • My Favourite Game: Cry Havoc designer Grant Rodiek • First Turn: Acclaimed Citadels creator Bruno Faidut • Club Spotlight: Redditch Wargaming Society • Shop Spotlight: Southampton’s Board in the City • Played: 20 games and accessories reviewed

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