Sun Apr 03, 2011 7:18 am  
Black Blade to Publish the Castle of the Mad Archmage (TM)

Black Blade to Publish the Castle of the Mad Archmage (TM) by Joseph Bloch

Press Release

02 APRIL 2011

Black Blade Publishing is proud to announce that it has reached an agreement in principle with Joseph Bloch to publish his Castle of the Mad ArchmageTM for old school fantasy campaign gaming. While the essential terms of the publishing agreement have been settled for some time, the formal agreement between Black Blade Publishing and Mr. Bloch will likely be signed later this week. Black Blade hopes to have the finished product available in time for Christmas, 2011

Jon Hershberger, President of Black Blade, said, “It is an honor and privilege for Black Blade to publish The Castle of the Mad Archmage in partnership with Joe Bloch. This mega-dungeon is one of the really great old school projects to come out of the old school gaming community in the past five years. It is a mega-dungeon in the grand tradition of the early days of our hobby. I’ve been running scenarios using Joe’s Castle of the Mad Archmage at gaming conventions for the past couple of years. Being a mega-dungeon, the Castle of the Mad Archmage fosters a style of play that differs from gaming scenarios based on traditional adventure ‘modules’ or tournament-style adventures where the objectives and scope are more rigidly defined. With the release of the free pdf version of the Castle of the Mad Archmage, Joe demonstrated his ability to create a setting that serves as both an educational experience for introducing the hobby to new gamers and a challenging adventure locale for veteran gamers.”

The agreement includes the publication and distribution of all twelve of the Castle of the Mad Archmage dungeon levels included in the previously released pdf of the same title, plus two additional levels that Joseph wrote exclusively for inclusion in the Black Blade Publishing release of the Castle of the Mad Archmage. These two additional levels will be

-- Surface Level – The Upper Ruins, and

-- Level One – The Storage Rooms

The Black Blade release of the Castle of the Mad Archmage will be published with several other design features that will make this a truly stand-out print product, including:

-- A 220-240 page hardcover containing the encounter keys and level by level detail for all 14 levels;

-- Full-color poster maps on heavyweight stock for all 14 levels;

-- A folio or folder to organize and store the poster maps when they're not in use;

-- A deluxe box or slipcase for storing both the level key hardcover and the map folio with all of the poster maps;

-- The addition of a number of original black & white interior art pieces to highlight specific set piece encounters or unique features of the Castle levels;

In addition, Black Blade Publishing and Joseph Bloch have discussed plans to release further expansions of the Castle of the Mad Archmage, including several sub-levels and level-expansions for the twelve primary dungeon levels beneath the ruins of the Mad Archmage’s Castle.

Black Blade Publishing launched publically in June, 2009, with its first adventure module for First Edition gaming. Since that launch, Black Blade Publishing published Swords & Wizardry: Core Rules and Knockspell magazine in partnership with Matt Finch. More recently, Black Blade Publishing partnered with Usherwood Publications to release an imprint of the OSRICTM rulebook in hardback print format. For additional information, please visit

Black Blade Publishing and the Black Blade sword logo are trademarks of Black Blade Publishing, LLC. “Castle of the Mad Archmage” is a trademark of Joseph Bloch. All other trademarks, service marks, registered trademarks, or registered service marks are the property of their respective owners.
Allan Grohe (