D&D Alumni Archive | 4/15/2013
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Against the Slave Lords Cover
Bart Carroll

Against the Slave Lords—the hardcover collection of the classic A series of adventures (as well as the all-new fifth adventure, A0: Danger at Darkshelf Quarry)—is scheduled to release this June. We've added the cover art to its product page, but also wanted to showcase a closer look at its gorgeous art.

If you've ever played through the original series, you'll remember the new cover art's subject from A2: Secret of the Slavers Stockade:

As the party opens the doors, they hear a shouted command. This room appears to be a huge kitchen, over 50' long and wide, and 40' tall. About the room are piles of crates and kegs, as well as several tables and cabinets. In the center of the room is a large fire pit, the fire in it licking at the charred head of a giant lizard hanging head down into the fire by a chain from the ceiling.

And who happened to be turning the roasting lizard but lcar, the commander of the hill fort garrison. According to the adventure, Icar was feared both for this tactical ability and his personal prowess, his reputation made even more awesome by the fact that he is totally blind, and relies on his other keen senses in battle.

He turns to face the door, as the party enters, and you see that his helm has no eyeholes. At a table in the east end of the room sit three barbaric looking men, all bristly bearded with coarse red hair. They have mugs of beer in their left hands and smilingly lift hand axes off the tabletop and hurl them at the party.

You might also recall this interior image of Icar, from A2: Secret of the Slavers Stockade, used for reference:

In the adventure, Icar wields a two handed sword +1 called Death's Master, and wore a ring of fire resistance. If lcar can, he will maneuver his opponents back to the firepit and then force them into it. As a last defensive measure, he will stand in the firepit using the lizard for cover and will throw handfuls of flaming grease at the party (treated as flasks of oiI)—thus explaining his pose in this image.

To recreate Icar, Nick Bartoletti first generated the following images. The sculpt series shows the progression from rough model to fine detail:

The render series included different images that he then composited together in various ways:

These were then finalized as the finished composition:

And integrated into the cover art:

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