Tag: Fight Magic Items

Fight, Magic, Items has a shiny new website!

FakeNet Initiated

Hi! Just a quick boo to let you know I’ve made a fun website for my upcoming book on the history of Japanese RPGs, Fight, Magic, Items. Head on over to fightmagicitems.rocks for all the info you could possibly want about the book, how to preorder it, request review copies, find current and upcoming appearances, etc.

You’ll also get a sneak peek of the gorgeous interior designs from the Running Press design team and artist Sara Alfageeh. This book looks good, y’all.

It’s a one-stop-shop for all things Fight, Magic, Items, and is the perfect link to share with other readers who’ll love the book.

Visit FightMagicItems.Rocks >>

Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs will be released by Running Press on October 4th, 2022. If you’re interested in reviewing or covering Fight, Magic, Items, head on over to NetGalley and request a copy. And, remember: preorders are love!

In the meantime, check out these generous reviews by a few early readers on NetGalley!

Fight, Magic, Items review copies now available!

You acquired “Fight, Magic, Items”! Would you like to equip it? Yes/No

I’ve been reviewing books as a blogger and a professional critic for over 15 years. I’ve been buried under piles of early review copies, trawled NetGalley for early digital copies, and seen my review blurbs plastered on book covers. It’s been a ride.

But now: the tables are turned.

Because drum roll review copies of Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs in the West are now available for request on NetGalley!

Here’s the most recent blurb:

Take a journey through the history of Japanese role-playing games—from the creators who built it, the games that defined it, and the stories that transformed pop culture and continue to capture the imaginations of millions of fans to this day.

The Japanese roleplaying game (JRPG) genre is one that is known for bold, unforgettable characters; rich stories, and some of the most iconic and beloved games in the industry. Inspired by early western RPGs and introducing technology and artistic styles that pushed the boundaries of what video games could be, this genre is responsible for creating some of the most complex, bold, and beloved games in history—and it has the fanbase to prove it. In Fight, Magic, Items, Aidan Moher guides readers through the fascinating history of JRPGs, exploring the technical challenges, distinct narrative and artistic visions, and creative rivalries that fueled the creation of countless iconic games and their quest to become the best, not only in Japan, but in North America, too.

Moher starts with the origin stories of two classic Nintendo titles, Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, and immerses readers in the world of JRPGs, following the interconnected history from through the lens of their creators and their stories full of hope, risk, and pixels, from the tiny teams and almost impossible schedules that built the foundations of the Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest franchises; Reiko Kodama pushing the narrative and genre boundaries with Phantasy Star; the unexpected team up between Horii and Sakaguchi to create Chrono Trigger; or the unique mashup of classic Disney with Final Fantasy coolness in Kingdom Hearts. Filled with firsthand interviews and behind-the-scenes looks into the development, reception, and influence of JRPGs, Fight, Magic, Items captures the evolution of the genre and why it continues to grab us, decades after those first iconic pixelated games released.

If you’re interested in reviewing or covering Fight, Magic, Items, head on over to NetGalley and request a copy (it’s quick and easy to set up an account). I’m a big proponent of grassroots word of mouth for books, so don’t hesitate to request a copy no matter the size of your audience or your platform. And, if you’re interested in working with me on a feature/interview/whatever regarding the book, please reach out!

Request Fight, Magic, Items on NetGalley

On a personal note, it’s dawning on me that review copies going out means, um, people are, like, reading the book now, and, you know what? I’m fine. Really. I’m fine. All good. Not freaking out at all.

Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs will be officially released by Running Press on October 4th, 2022. Just 68 days away! If you’re not planning to cover or review it, but still want a copy, remember that preorders are love! Check the previous link for online retailers or head to your favourite local bookstore and make a request. Preorders make all the difference, especially for debut authors like me.

Check out the cover for “Fight, Magic, Items” at Nerdist!

Y’all know Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs in the West is coming this October, but now, thanks to an exclusive reveal at Nerdist, we’ve got our first look at its gorgeous cover art.

When I first started writing Fight, Magic, Items, I had all these grand ideas for a cover. I wanted bold colours, details you could sink into for days, easter eggs for longtime fans, and everything between. This cover from artist Sara Alfageeh (who I interviewed for my newsletter!) is so far above and beyond my expectations. It’s brilliant, and just the right cover for this book. I’m obsessed with the way the book’s title mimics the iconic battle commands from classic JRPGs. Those commands were obvious inspiration for the book’s title, so to see Sara and Running Press’s design team not only get that, but run with the idea is such a thrilling moment. If you know, you know—and I think anyone who sees this cover will know exactly what they’re getting inside.

Visit Nerdist to see the full, high resolution cover!

I sold a book! Announcing “Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs in the West” (Running Press // October, 2022)

Cue Victory Fanfare

You’ve maybe noticed Astrolabe’s been a little quiet for the past few months. Well, I’ve had good reason for that, and now I can finally tell you why, and I’ve literally been waiting my whole life to say this:I’m pleased to say I’ve sold my first book, Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs in the West to Britny Brooks-Perilli at Running Press. And the best part? It’s done! Written, revised, copyedited, and off to production as we speak for release in early October, 2022. Just a few months away—and perfectly timed for the 25th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII‘s western release. What a (totally intentional) coincidence!

Pre-order Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs in the West

Here’s the blurb:

Take a journey through the history of Japanese role-playing games—from the creators who built it, the games that defined it, and the stories that transformed pop culture and continue to capture the imaginations of millions of fans to this day.

The Japanese roleplaying game (JRPG) genre is known for unforgettable characters, rich stories, and some of the most iconic games in the industry. Inspired by early western RPGs and introducing boundary-pushing technology and artistic styles, they’re responsible for many of gaming’s boldest and most successful games—and have the fanbase to prove it. In Fight, Magic, Items, Aidan Moher guides readers through the fascinating history of JRPGs, exploring the technical challenges, distinct narrative and artistic visions, and creative rivalries fueling the creation of countless classic games and their quest to become the best—not only in Japan, but in North America, too. 

Moher starts with the origin stories of two classic Nintendo titles, Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, and immerses readers in the world of JRPGs, following the interconnected history through the lens of their creators and their stories full of hope, risk, and pixels. From the tiny teams and almost impossible schedules that built the foundations of the Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest franchises; Reiko Kodama pushing the narrative and genre boundaries with Phantasy Star; the unexpected team up between Yuji Horii and Hironobu Sakaguchi to create Chrono Trigger; to the unique mashup of classic Disney with Final Fantasy coolness in Kingdom Hearts. Filled with firsthand interviews and behind-the-scenes looks into the development, reception, and influence of JRPGs, Fight, Magic, Items captures the evolution of the genre and its continued hold on millions of fans, decades after those first iconic pixelated games released.

I’ll write at greater length about my process and experiences with the book soon—because, boy howdy, did I learn a lot not only about JRPGs, but writing, publishing, and everything in between. This has been an intense labour of love for me as I wrote and revised Fight, Magic, Items between last summer and January, 2022. This book combines all my experience with JRPGs as a kid growing up during their golden age and explosive growth in the west with my background in games journalism, reporting, interviewing, and personal narrative history. It’s part history, part memoir, and all JRPG goodness.

This is a story that’s been brewing inside of me since my earliest memories of exploring the mines of Narshe on my trusty Commodore 1702 monitor, flying high in the skies of Zeal on the Blackbird, and soaking in Midgar’s neon glow with my friends at my side. It’s a dream come true, and I owe huge thanks to my agent, Eric Smith, who prompted the idea almost two years ago; my editor Britny, for giving me a platform; and my friend Ty Schalter for always being there with a Phoenix Down when I needed it most.

I’ll be revealing the cover at a later date, but right now I can tell you it (and the interior art) is being created by the astonishingly talented Sara Alfageeh. I’ve had a peek at the near final cover, and, whoo boy, let me tell you: it’s amazing. Sara’s previously worked on things I love, like Avatar: The Last Airbender, and has a terrific looking graphic novel coming out in March, 2022 called Squire. If you’re very adventurous, you might even find a sneak peek of the Fight, Magic, Items cover by taking your sleuthing skills to her Twitter profile.

For more information, and links to purchase from your favourite online book retailer visit Fight, Magic, Item‘s official page on the Hachette website.

If you can, please consider supporting your local bookstores with a pre-order for Fight, Magic, Items. This helps not only the book, but also supports the small businesses and booksellers that are the heart and soul of the bookselling industry.

Pre-order Fight, Magic, Items: The History of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and the Rise of Japanese RPGs in the West

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