A Blog of All Things Science Fiction and Fantasy

Friday, July 15, 2011

Review: Runescape: Betrayal at Falador by T.S Church

"Fear is a greater enemy than any mortal foe"
Author:T.S Church
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher:Titan Books (October 12, 2010)
Format: Paperback and Ebook

Betrayal at Falador is a novel based on the highly successful game, Runescape. As a person who played countless hours of Runescape, I was interested in seeing if the novel could expand the world of Runescape.

The novel begins in typical high fantasy style. A girl is found shivering in the rain and is taken in by a squire named Theodore. During a routine mission, Theodore is sent to the nearby city Taverly and is greeted by a powerful mage, Castimer, and a eccentric alchemist,Ebenezer. While Theodore, and his companions, fight off a nearby army of war mongers, a creature lurks in the shadow consuming innocent civilians in a quest to appease his dark master.

            The story of Betrayal at Falador is a good introduction to those who have not previously played Runescape, and is filled with quite a few references from the game that many veterans (myself included) will enjoy. Overall the story does not add much to the fantasy genre, but it is enjoyable nonetheless.

            The characters of Betrayal at Falador are pretty standard for a fantasy novel. The White Knight Theodore is the handsome warrior who is thrust into a world that runs counter to his beliefs. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Castimer is physically weak but his intellect allows him to get out of many situations. Where T.S Church takes a different turn from typical fantasy is with the characters Ebenezer and Kara Meir. At first glance Ebenezer’s musings about the world appear to be eccentric, but they provide the only intellectual aspects throughout the novel. I have quite a soft spot for strongly characterized female protagonists, and Kara Meir was quite the strong female character. Unlike the typical female protagonist, Kara is a masterful swordsman and is not afraid to be on the frontlines.

            Since this was T.S Church’s debut novel, there were quite a few issues that come with being a new novelist. Like new novelists, Church hampers the progression of the story with too many battles. Though I do like a rousing battle scene as much as the next guy, many of Betrayal at Falador’s battles were forced and did not move the story along. Church also makes the mistake of cramming to much into his novel without heeding the amount of pages his has to tale his story. This leads to some parts of the story feeling rushed and not planned out.

             Though the Betrayal at Falador did not add much to the fantasy genre, it should be read by those who enjoy/enjoyed playing Runescape. As for me, I feel a great urge to go dragon hunting in the actual Runescape game. 

The Betrayal at Falador review score: 29/50

World Building-5/10
Magic System-6/10 


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