15th November 1999


LONDON, ENGLAND: Pelgrane Press Ltd, a new UK-based company, is pleased to announce that it has acquired the rights to produce games based on Jack Vance's seminal Dying Earth novels.

Pelgrane Press is jointly owned by ProFantasy Software Ltd, which produces the renowned Campaign Cartographer map-making software, Simon Rogers, co-founder of ProFantasy Software and Sasha Bilton, a long-time Vance fan, roleplayer and top Java programmer.

"We are very excited by this property," says Simon Rogers. "We intend to do justice to the license. In a world of genre fiction and vanilla fantasy, Vance's voice is unique. We are brimming with ideas to bring Vance's world to life. In the game, your character's choice of eating establishment will be more important than whether they know the business end of a Bohemian ear-spoon."

Sasha Bilton says, "The Dying Earth has been such an inspiration to fantasy roleplaying games designers and now, finally, we'll get to play at the source. The chance to work with the highly professional team who run Profantasy Software Limited is the icing on the cake. ProFantasy has the distribution channels, industry knowledge and business savvy that will set Pelgrane Press apart from most game company start-ups. I can't wait to get playtesting."

Vance's style is humorous and vivid, yet melancholic. His characters, petty or powerful, are well drawn and credible. They have weaknesses and vices combined with a redeeming humanity. Vance's creations range from Cugel the Clever (an incorrigible rogue whose fortunes fluctuate with his pride) to Rhialto the Marvellous (a dashing, vain mage who commands elemental spirits called sandestins). In between are less talented wizards, unusual Hoons, doomed brigands, vat-grown beauties and wandering innocents. All overestimate their abilities and the stories delight in describing their misadventures.

Pelgrane Press will begin work on a Dying Earth roleplaying game in January. Submission guidelines will be available shortly from http://www.dyingearth.com. Contact simon@dyingearth.com for more details.


Jack Vance is the world's greatest living Fantasy author. Jack Vance wrote the DYING EARTH series of books over many years; the original volume "The Dying Earth" was released before Lord of the Rings. Other volumes include "Eyes of the Overworld", "Cugel's Saga" and "Rhialto the Marvellous." He is said to be "tolerant" of the idea of a roleplaying game based on his work.

PROFANTASY SOFTWARE LTD was formed in 1993 and has published quality PC software for gamers including Campaign Cartographer 2, Dungeon Designer 2, and the Core Rules 2 Campaign Mapper and the Forgotten Realms Interactive Atlas for Wizards of the Coast.

SASHA BILTON is the Managing Director of Ends of Invention and is one of the few expert Java programmers in the UK.

Pelgrane Press Ltd
18-20 Bromell's Road