Friday, October 19, 2012

Warp Riders 3

Ok! More on my crazy mash-up setting inspired by a metal album! (The first entry about this is here, the second here). This time I'll give some information from the perspective of the night side!

- Though visible from space, the day side of the planet is not a good place to land. Even in an emergency. No one can remember anyone who landed there ever returning.

- They say that the entire day side of the planet is heavily warded from teleportation and scrying from the outside. Some say even the Raven Queen cannot bypass these wards!

- The night side of the planet, especially Gloomwrought is a common stoping off point for Spelljammers piloted by pirates and other unsavory characters.

- They say if you look hard enough you can find almost anything in Gloomwrought's markets, but it may cost you more than gold.

- Gloomwrought is a strange place. It constantly changes and shuffles itself around. No one seems to know why.

- The Raven Queen who rules the nightside of the planet is rumored to have uncovered some secret long ago that gives her power over death and a fondness for the cold.

- The Raven Queen has a friendly rivalry with the Fey Winter Court, and has been known to ally herself with them from time to time.

- Whatever the truth of the Raven Queen's history, she seems to have ruled this half of the planet for as long as anyone can remember.

- Though she refuses to discuss the day side in public, rumors say that the Raven Queen is desperate for any information on what's happening there. However, those who give her false information are said to be tortured in unimaginable ways, with no hope of death.

- The region of elemental chaos that exists between the two halves of the planet is extremely dangerous, and easy to become lost in. Some say it connects directly to the elemental planes. Very few of the expeditions that have occasionally been launched to try to reach the other side of the planet (and gather information to sell to the Raven Queen) through this rout have returned. Those few that have returned refuse to go back.

Ok, I think that's enough for today, I may come back to this more from time to time, but it may be time to move on to other topics for a while.

Hope you're enjoying these!

-The Duke of Brandonshire

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Warp Riders 2

So last time I gave a quick overview of the idea for a campaign based on the album Warp Riders by The Sword. Today I'm going to go into a few more specifics I've thought of when I think about this setting. There may be several different entries in this series, so none of these get too long and I can hit this in manageable chunks.

I tried writing this a couple of different times and it kept both getting too long and getting tedious, both to write, and almost certainly to read. Initially I was trying to write this in a really detailed an authoritative manner, simply giving the history of the setting and setting in stone (or nearly so, I think in many places I used phrases like "perhaps" and "maybe" but the general effect was the same) how things went down. As I said it was getting tedious and, to be honest I had trouble really deciding how I wanted things to work and what that history was. I'd of course come up with a lot of this before actually running a game in this setting, at least as much as that history was likely to actually effect what the players were doing and such, but for this series I think I'm going to take a different tack, and hopefully it'll work a bit better.

Last week over at Grognardia James wrote up some examples of the sort of write ups that he's working on for the area around Dwimmermount in his upcoming published mega-dungeon. I had literally just spent an lunch break trying (and failing) to write up stuff about this setting when I read that. I think that's the way I'm going to go. Write things up mostly from the perspective of someone who might actually inhabit the setting, and leave things vague and possibly even not totally true. I'll leave it up to future DM's (including perhaps some day myself) to give these places and facts more detail and life through play. This may end up coming out something like an old rumor table.

Let's get started with a few in this post, and then there'll be more in later posts to come. We'll focus on the day side of the planet for now.

1) The Sorcerer Kings and Queens have been around as long as anyone can remember. Most believe they have always been around, though some say that they were once mortals like everyone else. Some even say that some of the Sorcerer Kings and Queens are much younger than the others and suggest that anyone who's dedicated enough to sorcery and psionics, and lucky enough to live a long time, could rise to their level.

2) Some whisper that there were once other beings in the world that were even more powerful than the Sorcerer Kings and Queens. They say that some of the strange and dangerous ruins that people sometimes claim to find in the deserts or deep underground are dedicated to these beings. Most people dismiss this a hogwash.

3) People complain about the Sorcerer Kings and Queens rule, but they rarely complain too much. Mostly out of concern for their personal safety, but also because some, especially priests of cults dedicated to them, say that the Sorcerer Kings and Queens long ago came together to banish a great darkness from the world, so that everyone could always live in light.

4) There are persistent rumors that there was once a Sorcerer King even more powerful than the rest. They say that he could control time itself. The story usually goes that the rest came together to defeat him. Some even suggest that they were unable to slay him, and had to imprison him.

5) Some traders and explorers claim that if you go far enough to the north you'll find a mountain ridge filled with green plants as far as the eye can see. They say that this place is guarded by small people who are rarely seen, but kill outsiders quickly and often.

6) The elves claim that if you travel far enough to the east or west you will find the edge of the world. At the edge of the world, they say, you will find a violent and chaotic place of storms of fire, ice, sand, and stone. Some have even said that occasionally strange creatures infused with the elements will come out of this chaos and wreak havoc before retreating back into the maelstrom.

Ok I think that's enough for today. I'll get more out in a day or two! What do you think? Which of these work for you? Which don't? Are any of the interesting? How could I improve them for next time?

Thanks for reading!

-The Duke of Brandonshire