While WOTC gave D&D licensed to Kenzer & Co from 2000 to 2004, Iron Hammer Graphics too was allowed to publish in 2002 :
Vecna - Hand of the Revenant.
This comic is a real masterpiece. As for the topic chosen, the writing or the graphic style used.
Plus, as any collection masterpiece, it s rarity adds to the myth.
It took me 2 years to acquire it, having dedicated automatic search in ebay, Mile High Comics and other sites for this, and regulary checking google... (also, living on the old continent was not helping of course...)
I will not say how much it cost me when I finally found a copy on amazon for a reasonable - ergh - price... but just to say, when I started collecting D&D comics almost 3 years ago, the only one copy up for sale on the web was around 100 bucks. (shipping costs not included heh...)
Now, if i get some comment of some guy bragging about the fact he just got it for 1$ on ebay, i ll track his IP down, get his address and his family's, and hunt him and all his clan for a significant punishment !
This being said, let s go back to the comic... :P
It s a 64 pages trade paperback issue without any ISBN or other barcode on it.
This issue is entitled Book one - Blood & Fire. And indeed, the story is to be continued, sadly, as none will follow. Apparenlty it was planned to be a 6 books graphic novel.
Iron Hammer Graphics have released only a very few graphic novels. I tried to get more infos on this publisher but found almost nothing. (Tho, I did not spend a lot of time on this :P)
Anyway, Vecna - Hand of the Revenant is rare and good.
The story has been written by Modi Thorsson and art done by Kevin McCann.
It depicts the moment when Vecna, the High Magus Lich (one the most famous D&D villains ever) lost his (much more famous) left eye and hand (that will become poweful evil artifacts) being hit by the power of Pholtus (god of light) during the siege of the city of Fleeth.
Along the story, we have flashbacks of Vecna's human youth when he was being taught arcane arts by his mother, Mazzel.
I find the plot construction very smart as it immerse the reader in the two moments that will forge Vecna's fate.
If the author took some freedom with Vecna's story, they re not making big mistakes regarding what you can find about the guy in D&D modules and adventures.
You can find some specialists' (and fanatics' imo :P) discussion here about the correctness of the elements depicted in Hand of the Revenant.
Now about the art, the style is somehow uncommon but not unpleasant. Very dark as the story is in the end...
The only remark i could make is about the fonts used... some are really hell to read... ok, it s stylish but imo, the readability comes first... (especially when you re not born english-speaker :P)
|...SAVE THE HEADS !|
Notice that, as well as in Kenzer & Co's publications, the authors made a graphic novel based on Greyhawk world. Coincidence ? o_O