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Saturday, 28 February 2009

Image of a Fantasytree

Yesterday I finished working on an image I have made with Paint.NET that I decided to call "Fantasytree".

This is what it looks like:

Fantasytree (2009)

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

The 10 Best Progressive Metal Albums Ever

Another of my favorite genres that often uses fantastic themes and lyrics (for a power metal top 10 look HERE) is Progressive Metal. Many of my favorite bands and musicians actually belong to that genre - Dream Theater, Symphony X, Shadow Gallery and others.

Fantasytree tip #6: One of the very best progressive metal albums - actually one of the best albums ever made, that I never get tired of and actually listened to this very morning - is Images and Words by Dream Theater. If you haven't heard this album... drop everything you have at hand and head for nearest record store. It's THAT marvellous. Promise me you'll hear it all the way through at least 3 times before deciding what you think of it, though (This album is rated as #16 in the progressive metal chart and as #919 overall at

These are the 10 highest rated Progressive Metal albums on right now:

1. Opeth - Still Life (1999)

2. Opeth - Blackwater Park (2001)

3. Edge of Sanity - Crimson (1996)

4. Atheist - Unquestionable Presence (1991)

5. Queensrÿche - Operation: Mindcrime (1988)

6. Arcturus - The Sham Mirrors (2002)

7. maudlin of the Well - Leaving Your Body Map (2001)

8. Dream Theater - Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes From a Memory (1999)

9. Opeth - My Arms, Your Hearse (1998)

10. Tiamat - Wildhoney (1994)

Of these I have heard and own albums by Opeth (but the only Opeth album I have is "Deliverance", not one of these three), that I find a little too brutal and dark; Queensrÿche and Dream Theater - but I do not really like the concepts of either one of these two, although they are great (Queensrÿche) and brilliant (Dream Theater) musically; Tiamat - the only album I've heard, an old one that I think was entitled "Clouds", was too much towards the black metal genre for my taste.

Number one in my Progressive Metal chart is - as already mentioned in the tip above - "Images and Words" by Dream Theater.

Which Progressive Metal album is the best ever in your opinion?

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

My Favourite Fantasy Quotes: C. S. Lewis

On an evening of startling beauty, when the sunset behind them was so crimson and purple and widely spread that the very sky itself seemed to have grown larger, they came in sight of land...

(The Voyage of The Dawn Treader, p 173)

Monday, 16 February 2009

Fight Demon or Run Away - Gamebook Resources Online

Ever since I was a little child I have been fascinated by - and enjoyed playing - gamebooks. Recently I have made some research into what gamebook sites that can be found online. One of the reasons for this has been that I'm thinking about making a "choose your path"-adventure game myself.

Here are some of the best links I found - links to gamebook classics like Lone Wolf and Fighting Fantasy, as well as some other Gamebook-related pages:

Demian's gamebook web page - One of the most comprehensive gamebook sites.
Fighting fantasy gamebooks - official site of a classic gamebook company
Online gamebooks - nice site where you can even create your own adventures (tempting...)
Project Aon - Contains all the Lone Wolf gamebooks available for download, for free!

Thursday, 12 February 2009

2nd Game by me and my son

The second game I created on Sploder together with my son. (Note: If game doesn't show, it can be found on

Make a free flash game!

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Free online game I have actually finished

I will publish links to those free online games I've actually finished. This means that the game (no matter how long it is) has managed to keep me interested enough to play it to the end. In other words it must have had SOMETHING to keep me hooked. Hope you'll enjoy them (and finish them) as well.

First one out is a really nice little adventure game where you wake up and don't remember who you are:


(Note: Not suitable for children! I would put a 12+ rating on it)

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Free Game for You to Play - by me and my son!

Today me and my son made our first game on Sploder together. He wanted a rather simple game, so if you're fed up with challenging games this might be a nice one for a change.

Hope you'll like it:

(control the robot with arrow buttons)
Note: If game doesn't show use the link to the game page below

Game link: For my Son

Monday, 9 February 2009

My First Finished Game/Interactive Art on Sploder is a fact!

This little "game" can be found now at my newly started blog

Please let me know what you think about it.

Sunday, 8 February 2009

A New Blog: Dreambend!

Today I am happy to announce that I have created another blog: Dreambend - A blog about pursuing your creative dreams. It will be about the creative interests I have, initially focusing on computer game making. An excerpt from the first post:

I also wanted to have the option available to broaden the creative perspective to any of the creative interests I have. These interests include:

- Computer game making
- Writing (I have begun writing a fantasy novel, some short stories and poetry - and of course blog on a daily basis)
- Music (I'm a musician and have written a couple of songs, just for family and friends)
- Drawing and Painting

This blog will be about any creative project of mine that I feel like writing about (or publishing online). The initial focus will probably be computer game making however, since that is the thing I'm most interested in at the moment. It can actually be regarded as a combination of all the other art forms.

I hope you will enjoy this new blog as well as this one.

Note: Since my blog interest is beginning to take up a little too much time at the moment I will simplify the layout of the posts here on Fantasytree and will only add dates and world description when I find time to - not in every post as before. Of course this will not affect the quality of the content in the actual posts.

Friday, 6 February 2009

Site update: Link and quicklinks added

Added a few links (for instance a link to the official site of Harry Potter author J. K. Rowling) and some quicklinks to the most read posts.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Recently Read: The Children of Húrin by J. R. R. Tolkien

Unable to leave the ancient Library just yet as there are so many remarkable books to keep you fascinated, the librarian seizes the opportunity and starts talking about yet another book...

(Today it is Trustdale in the 5th inquart, 0 S.D. and the sun still rules the sky this late afternoon)

ast night I finished reading the latest novel by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Children of Húrin. This novel - the result of his son Christopher Tolkien successfully putting together different fragments written by his father into one complete narrative - takes place in The First Age, long before the Third Age events of The Hobbit and Lord of The Rings.

I read in a review of the book before I decided to buy it, that this novel stylistically could be seen as a novel somewhere "between" the archaic prose of The Silmarillion and the more accessible books about the ring. That is actually a very good description of this book. If you don't like Tolkien's two most famous books (The ring trilogy is actually one single work), you will probably not be intrigued by this one. If you want to know more about the history of Middle-earth and experience an epic - albeit dark - story in one of the most detailed fantasy settings that will ever be created, then this is definitely something for you.

The story is not as elaborate - or exciting - as those about Bilbo's and Frodo's quests. But it's a dark high fantasy saga with captivating characters and marvellous settings. The beautiful illustrations by Alan Lee (smaller ones in black-and-white as well as some colored full-page ones) makes it an even richer experience.

Highly recommended for Tolkien fans but probably not for a more "mainstream fantasy" reader, looking for an easy-to-digest novel of a more casual style.

Fantasytree tip #5: If you have never read Tolkien before - and still haven't experienced some of the best fantasy ever written - my advice is that you to start with the two "ring-books", The Hobbit and Lord of the rings.

As a comparison I would rate these three works by Tolkien as follows:

Children of Húrin: 8 out of 10 Leaves

The Hobbit: 9 out of 10 Leaves

Lord of The Rings: 10 out of 10 Leaves (FANTASY MASTERPIECE!)

Each one of these three novels offers a fantastic experience of Tolkien's Middle-Earth though. Enjoy your travels.

Related links:

The Tolkien Society (includes a HUGE link-collection about practically everything related to Tolkien)

Recently Read: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Once more entering the ancient Library you stare in awe at the seemingly endless shelves of old books. The librarian notices your reaction and soon approaches. "May I help you?" she asks in a calm, considerate voice...

(Today it is Winddale in the 4th inquart, 0 S.D. and innumerable stars fill the night sky)

couple of days ago I finally finished reading a novel I've been leaving and returning to for a long time. Lewis Carroll's classical masterpiece (featured in "1001 books you must read before you die", Swedish edition) has been virtually impossible to read without remembering all the familiar characters (and plot) from the Disney version that I have seen more than once.

This makes it quite impossible for me to give the novel a fair rating. Full of unforgettable characters, puns, word games and logical puzzles taking place in a wondrous, dreamlike world, it is easy to see why this novel has remained a classic. I recommended it to anyone interested in reading a classic of parallel-world fantasy literature (á la C. S. Lewis' Narnia), in linguistic experiments or if you are not at all familiar with the story, what will happen and how it will end - this novel would surely have been an even more rewarding experience if I would have begun reading it without all the knowledge I now had about what to expect from it.

Luckily I know hardly anything of the less well-known sequel, "Through the looking-glass" that is included in the same edition. Since this continuation is also generally regarded as a literary masterpiece (and I enjoyed the first part) I plan to read it as well - and probably have yet another wondrous journey ahead of me soon.

Related links:

Into the wardrobe - A C. S. Lewis website (find more Narnia-related links in the link collection)

Monday, 2 February 2009

An Online Fantasy World You Can Visit Today

Walking down the spiral stairs for what seems like forever you finally arrive in the dark, damp catacombs beneath the Citadel. As you walk through a long, winding torch-lit corridor, seven heavy iron gates are unlocked in order for you to finally reach your shimmering destination. Before you - almost blinding you with the intensity of its bright white and blue light - stands the huge Portal of Dreams, capable of sending you to other worlds...

(today it is Moondale in the 3rd inquart, 0 S.D and a gentle drizzle is falling)

ver since I was just a little child I have been fascinated by how stories, fairy tales, books and - as I grew up - computer RPGs and MMORPGs seem capable of creating worlds existing within the real world. The idea with this post, that will hopefully one day grow into an entire fantasy universe (imagine a list with hundreds of Online Fantasy Worlds...that is what I call a smorgasbord) is to start collecting links to some of the available online fantasy worlds in one place.

Criteria for being included are at the moment:
- It is a fully developed, released MMORPG fantasy world (not in an alpha or beta state)
- It is totally free to enter and to experience at least parts of the world (registration will however probably be needed as it usually is)
- It must be an original world, no "clones" or fan versions of already existing ones
- It must be a browser-based world (no client download should be necessary)
- It must be a world described through the use of SOME kind of graphics (no text-based MUDs - Multi User Dungeons - at the moment, since then there are just TOO many to choose from)

Fantasytree tip #4: If you like or are curious about trying text-based MUDs I recommend you to visit The Mudconnector for more than one thousand MUDs to choose from.

I will try to keep this list up-to-date and to mark worlds that are no longer existing. But I am - as always - grateful for any feedback or suggestions I can get. If you feel that you have created a MMORPG world that meets the above criteria, simply write a comment where you give me the name of the world and your the address to your website and I'll come and take visit before I add it.

I won't provide any information at all about the different worlds (except that they meet the criteria stated above). Part of the excitement should be for you - and me as I will probably forget which world is which as the list grows - to find out more about and explore these distant destinations.

Shivering you enter the Portal of Dreams heading for...

Syrnia (Recently visited by me)

More worlds to be added soon...

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