Art of the Genre

Planescape… certainly a setting that is seemingly filled with endless in possibility. I well remember the first time I saw it, way back in probably 1996 as I’d just gone to work at a B. Dalton Bookseller in Bradenton Florida and came upon these beautiful boxed sets in the gaming section.

It didn’t take me long to use my employee discount on them, and today I’m going to take a look at The Factol’s Manifesto.

Produced in 1995 and designed by Dori Jean Hein, Tim Beach, and J.M. Salsbury this book covers all the various Factions of the City of Doors and beyond.

It is an outstanding resource and something I used on at least three campaigns that found their way from the Nameless Realms to the planes. The book is 150 pages of outstanding information on all 15 Factions, their leaders [which include 2nd Edition AD&D stats] and their headquarters [including detailed maps].

However, as this is Art of the Genre, I’m really here today to talk about the art.

One of the few projects ever produced by TSR that was not only done by a single artist but also by a freelancer and not a member of the ‘pit’, the entire thing, from cover to interiors, are done by Tony DiTerlizzi.

Now you all should know that DiTerlizzi is not only one of my favorite artists but also favorite people. His talent is only eclipsed by his generous nature, and his artwork helped shape a great deal of what I love about 1990s era D&D.

His interiors are sublime, and hold the muted color that gives the shadowed and otherworldly quality that I love about Planescape.

Maps are done by Diesel and provide a perfect backdrop to the game that are both useful and inspiring.

In all, I give the supplement high marks for both content and of course the artwork.

Artistic Rating: 4 [out of 5]

Written by Scott Taylor — September 29, 2013

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