Setting Idea: Wounded Gaia - Page 2
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  1. #11
    Thanks for the kind words

    Anyhow, I've calculated things and these areas are about 3,000-5,000 kilometers across, so I'll probably have to choose part (a quarter or one-eighth) of one of them as a starting area to keep the scale reasonable.

  2. #12
    I've decided to change the default campaign area to make things more manageable. The following area is approximately 1,000 km by 1,000 km. Most of this area was above water even in the Age of Blossom, though the sea has receded enough even here to allow the cool adventure environment of the now-exposed continental shelf. Age of Blossom climate was Mediterranean with a very hot summer and a cool, rainy winter (especially in the mountains); Frozen Age climate is temperate, with the mountains shielding the bay from the worst of the frost coming from the northeast.


    By golan2072 at 2009-02-04


    By golan2072 at 2009-02-04

  3. #13
    Regarding Age of Blossom technology, due to the fast pace of advancement in the final few decades of that Age, technology varied greatly, as older devices were not yet completely superseded by newer developments being invented in an ever-growing rate. Furthermore, different people developed different ways to do the same thing - the Kobolds, for example, have perfected the repeating crossbow, while the Dwarves worked hard at developing firearms.

    At the height of technology stood the Elemental Crucible - a magically-sealed chamber into which permanent portals have been opened into the Elemental Plains of Water and Fire. The violent reaction between the two opposing elements produced a massive amount of super-heated steam. A single Crucible could provide for all the heating and machine-running needs of a large industrial site (such as a Dwarven city). The main drawback of an Elemental Crucible was that powerful mages had to monitor it around the clock lest nasty creatures would siphon through the portals from their respective plains. When the Ice came and civilization fell, if the Crucible was not properly shut by a mage, the facility - and, indeed, the whole city in some occasions - became infested with hostile elemental creatures.

    A more primitive application of elemental techno-magic was the Boiler of Endless Steam, forcibly finding a fire elemental and a water elemental into the same boiler to produce a constant supply of steam (and endless agony for both elementals). While the typical boilers f that kind were quite large and were used to power large vehicles or machines, more advanced (and expensive) versions were small enough to include in smaller clockwork devices such as automatons.

    Firearms were common in the hands of Humans and Dwarves, and, in some cases, humanoid monsters. The most advanced - used by Dwarven military forces - were percussion weapons, in some cases built as revolvers (both pistols AND rifles) in order to allow repeating fire; the most common, however, were single-shot flintlocks, while some humanoids used primitive matchlocks. The main disadvantage of firearms was that in order to add magic to the attack you had to enchant each bullet - which was quite expensive as spent bullets were usually less recoverable than arrows or crossbow bolts. Another disadvantage was their relative cost to produce and operate.

    Crossbows, too, reached a high level of development. Precise clockwork systems allowed Kobold marksman to fire massive volleys of bolts with great accuracy and speed without having to reload. While firearms had greater damage potential, crossbows were cheaper, and, more importantly for Kobold tactics, far quieter.

  4. #14
    I'm enjoying your world so far. What is the major culture in this region like? Is it mainly human? What's the general social type? Feudal or tribal or democratic, or city-states? You mentioned having three nations in mind, right? What sort of religion do the survivors follow? Each nation has its own god, or is there a pantheon?

    I'm not sure why, but those are the kinds of questions I have to settle first in my mind when I create a world.

  5. #15
    Keep in mind that society hasn't fully recovered from the apocalypse (to say the least), so society tends to be somewhere near the thin line between tribalism and feudalism. This is closer to the early Dark Ages than to the Age of Chivalry: things are chaotic, many roads (not to mention forests) are unsafe, and kingdoms resemble fragile alliances rather than centralized powers. The most powerful leader in the area usually gets to be king, with lesser leaders swearing fealty to him, and, in turn even weaker leaders swearing fealty to them. But this doesn't prevent them from fighting each other, and, if the king loses even a little bit of his power, some of his vassals are likely to try and grab the throne.

    The majority of population has fled to the new fertile lands, and refugees from many cultures and races have settled in these areas. In these dark days necessity creates very strange bedfellows, such as goblin chiefs swearing fealty to a human king, or humans swearing fealty to a dragon lord. Anyhow, the starting barony would be human (with some dwarven and halfling settlements), neighboring an elven "barony" (actually a semi-tribal entity, with the tribal council swearing fealty to the king), and a hobgoblin barony. The king himself is human.

    Nearby there is a dwarven kingdom ruling a few surviving mining-towns on the western slopes of the mountains (though the dwarf king has human vassals, too), a swampy area around the river where a water-fey (or water-nymph?) "rules" over (or, more accurately, advises to) a chaotic collection of lizardmen, fairies and treants, and a horde of all sorts of savage humanoids (orcs, kobolds, troglodytes, gnolls, trolls) and some other monsters ruled by some monster I haven't decided on yet (mind-flayer? dragon? high-level mage of some sort?).

    Regarding religion, I haven't decided much yet, though I'd like to have more than one faith. It is still possible, especially in the fertile lands, to worship the warmer aspects of the Mother Goddess, though even then there would be a feral streak in the faith (which would be some kind of druidism). The Clockwork God has a cult, though I don't know how much of an inroad such an alien deity would make outside of the frozen lands. There would probably be other gods, and possibly a monotheistic faith.

  6. #16
    Using 30 km (about 18 miles) per hex as suggested on p.148 of BFRPG, the overall overview map would be 33 by 33 hexes in size (representing approximately 1,000km by 1,000km). Later on I'll create a higher-resolution map for the starting barony. This means that each hex represents one 8-hour day of foot travel by road, 1/2 day of horse travel by road, and 1/3 of travel on a good road with a very fast horse.

  7. #17
    Here is an early work-in-progress map for the default setting. Many of the locations are yet to be added; so far it shows the law of the land and only a few locations.

    The City of Arches is an Aboleth city uncovered by the receding waters; while most Aboleths sleep, a few still remain semi-awake in an underground lake in the city's bowels, tended by a host of Skum and other vile fish-men. These fish-men haunt the terrible Mangrove Cape and its horrid swamps looking for sacrificial victims for their half-asleep gods.

    Two major rivers deliver mud and nutrients into the [b]Murkwater Bay[/i], which is a favored haunt for pirates, adventure-seeking captains and giant eels.

    Many monsters, humanoid and not, dwell in the Ogokash Badlands, led by the mysterious King Ogokash (dragon? brain-lasher? necromancer? particularly smart hobgoblin?) who dwells in the foreboding Castle Ogokash. Under his/its strong leadership these tribes and monstrosities are a major military and political force, threatening the kingdoms to the north.

    The Rusalka "Queen" rules the Marsh Queendom from her watery house at the river-town of Korovod. The Marsh is inhabited by a collection of lizardmen, fey beings (like the Rusalka Queen herself), frog-men and Druidic worshipers of the feral Mother Goddess, who accept the Rusalka Queen's authority and wisdom (though she has little formal power over this chaotic bunch - mostly informal authority and respect).

    Old Kheraz was once a burgeoning seaport, but now the sea has receded and nothing lives in it (except, some say, for undead); New Kheraz is a living, busy harbor and a fishing-port of renown.

    Barin's Stand is a Dwarven town, inhabiting the upper levels of an old dwarven mining city dating back to the Age of Blossom; the lower levels are sealed and rumored to be infested with all manners of vile creatures.

    Olafsville is a small town ruled by Baron Olaf III; Olaf I - an adventurer - founded the city after he slew the Orc King and built a castle over the Orc King's warren. It is said that there is an old, abandoned Dwarven mine in the area, and that it may have some connection with the old Orc King's warrens.

    The High Sea is a large lake nested among the mountains; an old industrial city - the Old City In the Lake once existed on an island in its middle. Now this city is in ruins, but a cult of Clockwork God worshipers has recently settled there and started rebuilding the machinery towards their own twisted ends.

    The Frost-Bitten Wastes are a cold desert in the mountains' rain-shadow, blasted by dry, freezing winds from the northeast.

    There is much I'll eventually add to the map - the kingdom to which Olafsville belongs and its capital; the Dwarven kingdom and its capital; and many more towns, cities and ruins.

    By golan2072 at 2009-02-20

  8. #18
    Nice! You've got some very adventuresome places outlined there (but I think you really need a better name than "Marsh Queendom")! I'd love to start a campaign near there, and eventually meet Baron Olaf, and explore the ruins of old Kheraz...

  9. #19
    Thank you for your kind words!

    The "marsh queendom" is a placeholder; I'll give it a new name later on...

  10. #20
    I'm thinking about two main locations for a dungeon-complex: either Olafsville (a large cave complex near and under the village and the castle) or Barin's Stand (with the contemporary city occupying the upper levels of the mines and most of the old mines/dwarf-city abandoned and monster-infested.

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