Marie Bilodeau, our newest blogger, didn’t waste any time making a name for herself. Her first post, “Nine (mostly) Distinct (almost) Positive Traits of Chainmail Bikinis,” shot right to the top of the traffic charts for the month of December, and stayed there. Welcome aboard, Marie! I think you’re going to fit right in.
Sticking with the theme of fashionable armor, Dungeons and Dragons turned out to be a popular topic last month as well — and fantasy gaming in general, from Call of Cthulhu to the new Dragon Age game.
Mark Rigney examined early fantasy miniatures in our #3 post for the month, “AD&D Figurines: Youth In a Box?” And James Maliszewski proved that it’s not just readers who are frequently overwhelmed with choices, with his post “The Coolest RPGs I’ve Never Played,” fifth for the month.
Connor Gormley took a hard look at the overused trappings of much of modern fantasy in his article “Dwarves, Dragons, Wizards and Elves: Thinking About the Standard Fantasy Setting,” which clocked in at #2.
Also on the Top Five was Adrian Simmons, with another look at subtle storytelling of J.R.R. Tolkien, “Frodo Baggins, Lady Galadriel, and the Games of the Mighty,” a follow up to his popular article “Fools in the Hotzone: Saruman as the Bold but Incompetent Firefighter.”
Moving on to the Top Ten, we have M Harold Page’s latest review, “More Hardboiled than The Dresden Files: The Way Into Chaos: Book One of The Great Way by Harry Connolly.” Harry’s been a perennial favorite with our readers since we published his very first story, “The Whoremaster of Pald,” back in issue #2.
Rounding out the Top 10 are James Maliszewski’s look at gaming in the world of Alice in Wonderland, a review of the classic microgame Ogre, Sean McLachlan’s photo-odyssey of the ancient kingdom of Axum, and James again, this time with a tribute to the great Fritz Leiber.
After the list of top articles for December, I’ve also broken out the most popular blog categories for the month.
The complete Top 50 Black Gate posts in December were:
- Nine (mostly) Distinct (almost) Positive Traits of Chainmail Bikinis
- Dwarves, Dragons, Wizards and Elves: Thinking About the Standard Fantasy Setting
- AD&D Figurines: Youth In a Box?
- Frodo Baggins, Lady Galadriel, and the Games of the Mighty
- The Coolest RPGs I’ve Never Played
- More Hardboiled than the Dresden Files: The Way Into Chaos: Book One of The Great Way by Harry Connolly
- A Red & Pleasant Land
- The Classic Games of Metagaming: Ogre
- Axum: Ancient Superpower of Ethiopia
- He Sought Adventure
- Book Pairings: Queen Victoria’s Book of Spells and Royal Airs
- Thongor of Lemuria – Part One by Lin Carter
- A Preliminary Look at Dragon Age: Inquisition
- The Doom That Came to Lovecraft
- The Return of Horror on the Orient Express
- Five Geeky Gaming Christmas Present Ideas
- Sample the Best of the Pulps with Wildside Pulp Classics
- The Public Life of Sherlock Holmes: Holmes for Christmas
- Art of the Genre: Playing D&D 5E and an In-Depth Look at the new DMG
- The Day Job
- Travis McGee: Hard-boiled Detective with a Dystopian Sci-Fi Imagination
- What’s Your Motive?
- Eleven Shades Of Evil
- The Public Life of Sherlock Holmes: The Science Fictional Solar Pons
- Arms and Armor of the Abyssinian Empire
- Embrace the Odd: The Fantasy Catalog of ChiZine Publications
- Comic Fandom Coolness: The Women of Marvel Podcast
- The Ballantine Adult Fantasy Series: Lud-in-the-Mist by Hope Mirrlees
- Gold, Frankincense, Myrrh… and Ectoplasm?! Ghost Stories for Christmas
- A World without Tolkien
- The German Indiana Jones: Out of the Rat Trap: Desert Adventures with Rommel by Max Reisch
- New Treasures: Jala’s Mask by Mike and Rachel Grinti
- Ghost Stories and Stranger Tales: Couching at the Door by D.K. Broster
- Sing, Muse: Ody-C Provides a Hundred New Twists on an Ancient Tale
- Swords & Sorcery Gold from a Master of Horror: Far Away & Never by Ramsey Campbell
- The Top 50 Black Gate Posts in November
- Revising and Editing Part I: The Big Picture
- Attack of the Gnomes: An Interview with Kenny Soward
- “The Distances Between Things”: Patricia A. McKillip’s The Changeling Sea
- Vintage Treasures: Echoes of Valor, edited by Karl Edward Wagner
- Fantasy Keeps You Young
- Keep Your Blaster Close: The Many Horrors of Outbreak: Deep Space
- Vintage Treasures: The Compleat Werewolf, by Anthony Boucher
- New Treasures: Dark Fusions – Where Monsters Lurk!, edited by Lois H. Gresh
- The Public Life of Sherlock Holmes: Watson’s Christmas Trick
- Adventure On Film: Richard Lester’s The Three Musketeers
- Lawrence Schick on “Dash and Daring Never Go Out of Style”
- New Treasures: The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by H. P. Lovecraft and I. N. J. Culbard
- New Treasures: Trail of Cthulhu: Mythos Expeditions from Pelgrane Press
- Benedict Cumberbatch Confirmed as Doctor Strange
The top categories last month were:
- New Treasures
- Blog Entry
- Game Reviews
- Editor’s Blog
- Vintage Treasures
- Art of the Genre
- Goth Chick
- Future Treasures