In the grim future there are only audio dramas
Perfection by Nick Kyme 2/5
Perfection will always be a difficult title to live up to, but sadly this tale of the Chaos Space Marine Emperor’s Children really does fall quite far from the mark. It is simply rather lumbering and clumsy, without much that is in any way original or entertaining. Kyme has made attempts to make the story more interesting with some of the characters and events, but nevertheless this is a rather dull affair that’s not really worth bothering with.
Having said, that it is infinitely preferable to the utter dirge that was Chosen of Khorne by Anthony Reynolds. The action is written adequately, as is the whole piece, but it simply lacks something in its marrow.
There seems to be a serious lack of quality when it comes to covering or being from the perspective of traitor Space Marines, especially in the audio dramas. I find it difficult to believe this was written by the same guy who wrote Thunder From Fenris.
Malediction by CZ Dunn 5/5
In contract to the last one, I don’t think I have read or listened to any of CZ Dunn’s writing before and was blown away by just how intriguing and original this tale actually is. This is a cunningly and well-crafted story about the mystery surrounding a sole Imperial Guard survivor of a defence against Chaos, but at the same time it is more than that. The framework is an anniversary dinner for the top brass and the retelling of the actions on that day so many years ago, and the memories and tales themselves. This gives the story a wonderful foundation and the listener a peek at aspects and character of the Imperial Guard’s upper echelons .
I could really wax lyrical about how much I like this story, but I don’t want to give anything else away, except to say that this is the best Warhammer audio drama I have listened to alongside Raven’s Flight by Gav Thorpe.
One other interesting thing about this audio drama was that the events actually help to explain a Warhammer 40K rule that always puzzled me.
Bloodquest: Prisoners of the Eye of Terror by Ben Counter 5/5
Ben Counter is one of the strongest and most consistent of the Black Library’s scribes, although we all, myself definitely included, seem to neglect to mention him of John French when talk of the best Warhammer authors. He wrote Galaxy in Flames and made me cry like a baby for Throne’s sake!!
Anyways, this is a great audio drama that continues the story of the old Warhammer Monthly serial of the same name. I always enjoyed the Bloodquest stories, although they always lacked a depth and quality of dialogue to make them a particular favourite. This audio drama lacks for nothing in tone and immersion, with possibly the greatest production of any audio drama I have heard. The music, effects and voice acting are absolutely superb and used to great effect.
The story itself is enjoyable and well written. There is enough care given to the Daemonworld and the action to mark it above many, but if it was just a short story I probably would have given it 4/5, but the production is good enough to give it the extra mark.