At last, the ritual is complete. In my hands is this book – the key to many of my nightmares and fantasies. A seven-year invocation completed, and yet its effects are only starting to unveil. My journey in delivering this product may have finished, but now you have the tools to gaze beyond the Curtain and cast your own stories of light and shadow, guiding your players unto countless strange reflections of our world.
For this last hoorah, I am going to leave you with the works that have influenced my imagination, playstyle, and “genre aesthetic” when it comes to modern occult fantasy.
I am not going to even try to hide it – the big names of Call of Cthulhu and World of Darkness are massive vertebrae in my geek backbone. Many nights and many systems and re-imaginings (like Monte Cook’s World of Darkness, or Realms of Cthulhu for Savage Worlds) were spent scaring friends or reveling in our wickedness. Sigil & Shadow is a love letter to those nights.
Other sources of inspiration (for various reasons) include Chill, Runequest (and its many derivatives), early Shadowrun, The Window (if you know, you know), GURPS Voodoo: The Shadow War, the Buffy and Angel RPGs, and of course: BareBones Fantasy and Covert Ops by DwD Studios (since Sigil & Shadow is built off their bones!)
This medium has more influence on me than books, TV shows, or films. Most stories or adventures that I conjure up tend to come from the feelings or visions evoked from getting lost in good discography. My best cure for writer’s block is night driving to a well cultivated playlist.
If you really want to get the “vibe” of Sigil & Shadow, there is a playlist I frequently curate on Spotify called Illuminating Shadows where every track represents something I associate with the game. It started as a hodge-podge of my usual goth/industrial go-to tracks, but after a while I set some rules to it (including that all tracks on it were recorded this century – songs that originated before 2000 are on there as covers).
- Cast a Deadly Spell
- The Forsaken
- Hellboy (Ron Perlman)
- Hellraiser (most of them)
- John Dies at the End
- Let The Right One In (and the American version, Let Me In)
- Near Dark
- Night Watch (& Day Watch)
- The Order (the one with Heath Ledger)
- Phantasm (whole franchise)
- Underworld (just the first 2, and Rise of the Lycans)
- American Horror Story: Coven
- Buffy (& Angel)
- Dark Shadows
- Dead Like Me
- The Dead Zone
- Dresden Files
- Forever Knight
- Hemlock Grove
- The Lost Room
- The Magicians
- Psi Factor
- Stranger Things
- Twin Peaks
- Witch Hunter Robin
- The X-Files
- Book of Lies: The Disinformation Guide to Magick and the Occult
- Condensed Chaos (Phil Hine)
- A Course in Demonic Creativity (Matt Cardin)
- Liber Null & Psychonaut (Peter J. Carrol)
- The Psychonaut Field Manual (BlueFluke)
- Necroscope (series, Brian Lumley)
- Neverwhere (novel, Neil Gaiman)
- The Mayfair Witches (series, Anne Rice)
- To Rouse Leviathan (anthology, Matt Cardin)
- The Vampire Chronicles (series, Anne Rice)
- Witch War (short story, Richard Matheson)
- The Crow
- Ghost Rider
- The Invisibles
- The Fall of Cthulhu
- Alan Wake
- DMC: Devil May Cry (Ninja Theory, 2015)
- The Secret World
- Abandoned America
- Atlas Obscura
- Equinox Society (now erased from the internet — sorry you missed it!)
- The Holders series
- SCP Foundation
- Countless "ASMR Creepy Pasta" YouTube videos
Order your copy of the book from the Osprey Games store today here.
Find more of the incredible work of author R.E Davis on his personal blog page here.
Find our latest series of Sigil & Shadow blogs from the talented mind of author R.E. Davis here and we’ll be back next week to explore the inspirations behind his game as well as listening to a new Spotify playlist.