Sunday 12 May 2013

Fantasy Author Top Trumps!

Fantasy Author Top Trumps - crowd sourced!
Vote at the bottom of the page.

 (Results after (170/166/171/111) votes - I will update from time to time.)

If you're as old as George Martin, or Neil Gaiman, or... me, you'll remember a dark time, a time before the internet, a time before computers, before handheld electronics... and in that dark time a game called Top Trumps (which still exists) wherein you faced your opponent with half a deck of cards, each card sporting an example of the trump in question (tanks, sports cars, military jets etc) and you'd choose an attribtute from your trump that you hoped would beat his. Top speed: 1800 mph ... or Wheel-Base 4.8 yards etc. Like I said these were black days where raindrop racing on window-panes was still considered entertainment.

So here I am with two goals:

i) crowd sourcing the stats for a fantasy author top trump deck

ii) cynically testing my theory that the ideal blog post to create a geekgasm and get a bazillion hits contains a) few words b) many pictures c) reader input d) GRRM/Rothfuss/Sanderson/Gaiman

Each author has a poll where you can vote on Prose / Plotting / Characters / Description / Beard / Imagination / Wow factor  - the options are for 10 / 5 / 0 points. When averaged these will create a value between 0 and 10.

Vote on GRRM's stats:

Vote on Gaiman's stats:

Vote on Rothfuss' stats:

Vote on Sanderson's stats:


  1. You may have a point about the photos. No matter whether I write a history essay with 5 or 6 of my photos as illustration or slap half a dozen pics in a post with less than ten lines explanation, I get the same amount of comments. Still, having a blog with illustrated history / photo blog with historical essays, it's more fun than just uploading them to Flickr.

  2. And this is how I know I'm not your average fantasy fan....:D

  3. This is surprisingly helpful for choosing which books I should read next... :)

  4. My first experience of Top Trumps was this one, which we had in my classroom at school:

    As you can see, some of them are quite gruesome - particularly for the six-year-old me. No wonder I ended up going down the sorry path of becoming a grimdark fantasy author...

    I agree with Snow Wanderer, this is potentially a really useful resource in helping find books to read. I think you should expand it into a full-blown, traffic-spiking game and add a bunch more authors! :D

    1. With these guys there's a good chance a fantasy-reading visitor will have read all four. If I go down a tier then people are less able to compare the authors, and you'd just get the fans of X saying X is 10.0 all the way... or maybe not... don't know. I suppose there could be a Weeks/Lynch/Abercrombie/Brett round.

    2. Oh please, please do a Weeks/Lynch/Abercrombie/Brett round... and maybe one with some ladies too?

  5. I once ended up doing a impromptu presentation on Top Trumps. I was reporting on the New York ToyFair and Hasbro were trying to introduce them to the US Market. We were with a bunch of suits and the product demonstrator didn't have a clue what they were doing.

    So I jump up on the stage, snatch the cards from this demonstrator's hands and proceed to demonstrate the game to the suits. I may have even shouted at one of them when they chose to play a crap stat (I remember it being a really good card). I left everyone a little shell-shocked only for our guide to say, "as you can see, it's REALLY big in England."

    Too damn right!

  6. I still play Trumps with my 9 year old nephew. He has gotten a deck of Pirates of the Carribean and Narnia from somewhere. Its really fun.

  7. Top trumps still exist and are played by children. Mainly in wet plays, but still there.