Gord Sellar is a writer and musician who has lived in South Korea since 2002, and contributed energetically to the cross-pollination between its local SF scene and the English-speaking world. In addition to academic work on Korean SF, he has blogged extensively on the subject, and has served as a co-translator, editor, and support person for multiple major efforts to translate Korean SF to Western audiences (such as Kaya Books’ anthology Readymade Bodhisattva and Clarkesworld’s 2019 Korean SF translation series). He wrote the screenplay and musical score for the first Korean-language adaptation of an H.P. Lovecraft story, the award-winning “The Music of Jo Hyeja” (dir. Jihyun Park, 2012), and his adventure Fermentum Nigrum Dei Sepulti is now available from Lamentations of the Flame Princess (US webstore | EU webstore).
War of the Arrows, tells a story about a much less-widely discussed incursion: that of the Manchu invasion of 17th century. In the film, a man’s sister is kidnapped by Manchurian invaders and taken back across the border into Manuchuria.
Courtly intrigue is a major staple both of Korean historical and fantasy narratives, and of popular South Korean historical TV series. This book will help GMs and players to learn more about the court culture of Joseon.
If you’re interested in running a more serious scenario in a fantastical Korean milieu, it’s worth checking out director Dae-seung Kim’s 2005 film Blood Rain (Hyeol-eui-noo).
The King and the Clown differs from the other films discussed in this series in a couple of ways. It doesn’t have any fantastical elements and it deals explicitly with LGBTQ themes.
While previous posts in this series have focused on inspirational media that you can use for ideas while preparing for your game, this post will focus on musical resources you might want to use during a game. For many game groups, music c
Although it’s not the easiest book to buy these days, The Dutch Come to Korea is a great resource for anyone considering the idea of using a Korean-inspired fantasy setting like Jeosung as part of a wider world setting, or as a setting in which non-native characters could find themselves and undertake adventures.
The core premise of Kingdom is simple: in the wake of historical hell breaking loose in Korea, a much worse kind of hell breaks loose.
One form of philosophy that’s been especially historically important in East Asian cultures including Korea, and which in fact remains important in terms of its influence on culture, is feng shui, or as it’s called in Korean, pungsu.
Although The Pirates is clearly designed as a Korean-flavored knock-off of the then-popular Pirates of the Caribbean film franchise, for what it is, it’s actually pretty good. I mean, don’t go in expecting historical veracity or brilliant dramatic performances, but if you’re looking for inspiration for a nautical campaign set around the coasts of Jeosung (or a nautical leg of a larger campaign in the setting), it’s very much worth checking out.
The character Byeon Gang-soe is often summarized as a kind of “Korean Casanova” because both figures are famous for the same thing—the “legendary libido” alluded to in the title of this film—but beyond that one trait, the two have very little in common: while Casanova was a priest, a man of letters, a spy, and a con man, Byeon was a worthless good-for-nothing bum.