Gotrek Gurnisson was the greatest monster slayer of the age, who met his doom at the End Times. The heroic duardin stepped forth into the Realm of Chaos to fight the daemons gnawing at the world’s ending and satisfy his death oath, leaving behind his companion Felix Jaeger.
Now Gotrek has returned, having outlived the old gods and the Old World. Spat from the ruinous depths with his redemption unfulfilled, he emerges into the Mortal Realms, a strange new world where gods walk the earth and dark forces are ascendant. Nothing is as he remembers. His oaths are dust, and the lands are torn asunder by Chaos.
Yet when Gotrek learns of human champions being elevated to immortality for Sigmar’s fight against this darkness, the so-called ‘Stormcast Eternals’, he knows why fate has brought him into this new age. To find Felix. For only then can he find the peace in death he seeks. But is there more to Gotrek’s apotheosis than even he can fathom? Has he truly been chosen by Grimnir and for what purpose?
Author: David Guymer
Narrators: Brian Blessed and Various
Publisher: Black Library
Run Time: 5 hrs 28 mins
Audio Release Date: 03/11/2018
My Rating of ‘Realmslayer’: 4 out of 5
Realmslayer was one of those things that, when I saw it, ticked so many boxes for me as to why I ought to give it a go. The first being that I love audio dramas. The second being that it had a pretty good cast in it. Brian Blessed for one! The third was that it gave me a chance to try and understand the Age of Sigmar a little better.
Point three was the most welcome of all as I really am struggling to get on with this Age of Sigmar nonsense that the Warhammer universe replaced The Old World (my favourite ever fantasy setting of any universe) with. I doubt I’ll ever care for Age of Sigmar as much as I did the Old World and there will always be a fairly large part of me that hates GW for making the switch. But, if I’m honest, Realmslayer did a fairly good job of easing me in to the universe and I found myself enjoying the story. I’m still not sold on this new setting. And I will still regard it as ‘this Age of Sigmar nonsense’ because, frankly, I honestly think the whole setting is utter nonsense. But, on with my thoughts about the audio drama … my dislike of this change could span many hours of writing!
The Production value was very high. The sound effects, the cast and the story in general were top notch. I felt that having an actor the calibre of Blessed really added to the piece (even if his voice did not mesh with the way Gotrek sounded in my mind). There were some real high points as far as making the listener feel what the characters were feeling. Whether it was remembering what was lost to the past or just their current struggles, I felt like I was very much a part of it.
This is, sadly, just a Gotrek story rather than Gotrek and Felix story. Having been spat out of the Realm of Chaos, where Gotrek had been cheerfully slaying Chaos beasts for millennia, he finds himself in this new world (this Age of Sigmar nonsense) and immediately assumes his entire surroundings are fabrications of the Chaos Gods to trick him. After unwillingly forging alliances, Gotrek heads out in search of his dear old friend Felix, convinced that if he is here in this strange new world, then so to must be his manling friend.
I did feel like I had been undersold the product due to the run time being listed as five hours and twenty-eight minutes but the last hour and a quarter or so was literally just the cast talking about their experiences whilst making the piece. It also highlighted the fact that Blessed knew very little about the character just going by what he was saying about Gotrek. I also felt that the woman who voiced the dark elf was guilty of some serious over-acting. Almost like she was uncertain if she was doing this for a pantomime villain so erred on the side of caution and went full pantomime villain just in case.
As much as I enjoyed listening to it, I much prefer reading Gotrek (and hopefully Felix) tales. So will probably continue on with Gotrek’s adventures in paperback form.