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[NG/Judges Guild] Rorystone Road, Campaign Hexes, and More!

GreenPiece

First Post
Hi there!

The Rorystone Road download is now available from our new Downloads Page at http://www.judgesguild.com. As announced in our newly released Player's Guide to the Wilderlands this download provides a detailed look at the region from the City State of the Invincible Overlord to the dwarven citadel of Thunderhold. Mapped in 5 mile hexes, with all the villages, towns, castles, citadels and lairs detailed in full. It is a preview of the degree of detail and type of content you can expect from the upcoming Wilderlands of High Fantasy Boxed Set.

Also, check out the same page to download the hex maps for use in the Campaign Hexagon System. The large overland maps of the Wilderlands setting are mapped in 5 mile hexes. Each five-mile hex can be broken down using these maps into smaller hexes of .2 miles (1056 feet). Using the same maps, those .2 mile hexes can be broken down into smaller hexes approximately 40 feet from side to side.

Besides our new Download Page we have also set up a Fan Materials Page! This page offers you a chance to have Judges Guild material YOU created posted on our official site!

Check out all the new stuff, it's worth it! :)

Have fun!

Orcus' Little Helper
 
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Orcus

First Post
I just sent Greenie the Thunderhold download that details the dwarven citadel of Thunderhold. It includes a full Judge's Map of the citadel. It should be up on the Judges Guild site (www.judgesguild.com) on the Downloads page tomorrow.

Clark
 

DaveMage

Slumbering in Tsar
No one will ever accuse Necromancer Games of not promoting their games enough. :)

I'm waiting for my order for the Player's Guide to the Wilderlands to come in, but in the meantime, thanks for all the free stuff!
 

Orcus

First Post
More free stuff. Thunderhold has been posted (new layout plus Judge's Map) on the Judges Guild downloads page.

Clark
 

Orcus

First Post
And I even added a Player's Map of Thunderhold. Look for a download detailing the city of Modron next.

So why am I doing all this stuff?

Simple. I think people need a reason to embrace a new setting. Just putting out one silly book wont do it. So I am literally GIVING AWAY lots of old content to help you immediately have everything you need to run the setting.

No reall, WHY?

Because that is what I wished game companies did when I was growing up playing D&D. And now I own my own company and I can do it that way if I want, even if it means I dont maximize the money I earn. Plus, I freaking love this setting and I want everyone to check it out and get into it.

Clark
 


Orcus

First Post
For those who need a quick summary, the Wilderlands is the classic campaign setting that is home to the City State of the Invincible Overlord. Imagine a classic, gritty fantasy setting based on Conan, Elric and Fahfard and the Grey Mouser instead of Tolkien.

Anyone who is frustrated that WotC has dropped the ball with Greyhawk will want to check out this setting. And anyone who is frustrated at how the Realms are no longer truly the "Forgotten Realms" but instead could be called the "Overdetailed And All-Too-Well-Known Realms That No Longer Hold Any Mystery Since My Players Have Read All 1000 Novels And Know the Setting Better Than I As The DM Ever Could" also needs to check out this setting.

Here is the back of book information and a clip about the setting.

Wilderlands of High Fantasy: Player’s Guide™

Welcome to the Wilderlands of High Fantasy!

Whether you are a veteran Judges Guild fan or a new player just now discovering the Wilderlands, this Player’s Guide introduces you to the classic Judges Guild epic fantasy setting and provides you with everything you need to begin a campaign in the Wilderlands, including the classic City State of the Invincible Overlord!

A Deadly World of Epic Adventure

This Player’s Guide includes a large full color fold-out map and details on the history and background of the Wilderlands. At your fingertips is information on the important cities and geographical features of the Wilderlands as well as information on the gods and monsters unique to the setting. The Player’s Guide also includes details on the City State of the Invincible Overlord, allowing you to run a campaign set in the Wilderlands right away!

And now the blurb from the intro:

The Wilderlands Setting

The Wilderlands setting details an area slightly smaller than the Mediterranean sea and surrounding lands. Unlike many current published settings where everything has been discovered and most of the world is known, the Wilderlands are largely unexplored and overland travel is dangerous. There are few “nations.” Instead, the lands are dominated by “city states,” principle among them being the City State of the Invincible Overlord and Viridistan, the City of Spices—also known as the City State of the World Emperor. The City State of the Invincible Overlord so dominates the Wilderlands, that many campaigns run in this setting are often called City State Campaigns.

The civilization of the Wilderlands centers mostly on the largest city states: Viridistan, the City State of the Invincible Overlord, Tarantis, Valon, Rallu and Tula. But these locations are small in comparison to the vast forests, expansive plains, open seas, trackless deserts, imposing mountains and wild rivers. The light of civilization in the Wilderlands is a dim spark against the dark wilds.

The Wilderlands is a setting in decline. Long ago empires covered the region. But great wars, with the gods themselves fighting alongside men, has reduced the splendor of those past civilizations, leaving them in ruins. The most recent such war was the War of the Pious and Philosophers, pitting the followers of magic against the followers of science. That war was some 6000 years ago (though that date is disputed). Cities that do exist today are generally built on the sites of ancient cities, some among the ruins themselves. Broken roads, crumbled walls, sunken buildings and half-ruined towers dot the landscape, a constant reminder of the faded past.

Life in the Wilderlands can be summed up for the average commoner as follows: Solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short. The average life expectancy is twenty years unless one lives in a walled city or town such as the City State, Viridistan, Thunderhold, Modron, Warwik or other large cities, in which it is only a little higher. Almost all Human families produce at least ten children, of whom two or three may live long enough to have children of their own. In the wilderness villages, wandering monsters and the raids of nomads, brigands and various humanoid species which are inherently evil are the bane of many. Rampant, unchecked disease is common to both walled city and wilderness village; so is infant mortality. The dangers of wandering monsters are lessened in a walled city or town, but the concentration of people in a small area leads to a high crime rate and poor sanitation; therefore, instead of being slain by a marauding dragon, a city dweller may have his throat slit for the contents of his purse. Few men manage to live past the ripe old age of thirty-five, and the fact that a man is fifty or sixty years old indicates great wisdom on his part (or an incredible run of luck).

Welcome to the Wilderlands, where life is cheap, travel is dangerous and a strong sword arm is worth more than a purse full of gold.

Oh yeah, and did I meantion cover art by FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA!!!

I think the biggest thing about the setting is its flexibility. The Wilderlands (and all JG products) are all about being YOURS to expand. There will be the Player's Guide, the City State, the Boxed set and a module or two perhaps. Thats it. You wont have to feel like you have to buy 100 products to "run the setting right." There are no insane Weigels screaming at you because you did something different from Bob Bledsaw, the creator of the setting. Heck, Bob himself says he changes the setting every time he starts a new campaign. There are no novels. No saturday morning cartoons. There are not 300+ supplements that your players have bought and now know the setting better than you. This setting gives you everything you need and then lets you make of it what YOU will, not what some marketing department that is interested in novel tie ins and movies wants. To me, that is a setting I want.

Clark
 

Cergorach said:
Kewl Orcus! I love your thinking!

So sell us on the setting, what are the settings highlights and why.

As a GM you will find that a lot of the tedious work of generating stats has been done. The setting is designed so you can

a) customize it without worrying upsetting some overall worldview
b) know about all the villages, citadels, islands, lairs, and ruins that are between where your players are and where they want to go.

Rob Conley
 

Cergorach

The Laughing One
Clark, using WotC's 'faults' to sell your own product is a bit like badmouthing the 'competition' in my book. You might want to avoid that in the future.

The "The Wilderlands Setting" part was very helpful, the rest a bit confusing and more about telling what it's not than telling about what it is. And stop mentioning FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA, wtf is FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA, why should i care about FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA, and who cares that the cover is by FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA ;-)

I can see your very excited about this release, but for someone like me who has only heard that this setting existed a time long ago, far, far away. I don't really care that it's based on a lisence, i (and many with me) want to know about what it's about, as i said the "The Wilderlands Setting" was very helpful, you might want to use that to promote the setting.

For those who need a quick summary, the Wilderlands is the classic campaign setting that is home to the City State of the Invincible Overlord. Imagine a classic, gritty fantasy setting based on Conan, Elric and Fahfard and the Grey Mouser instead of Tolkien.

Is also very helpfull.

I might come across as a bit negative, let me assure you that i'm not, i'm a bit confused on what it's all about. I've seen some previews (the map is very impressive, as is the cover art), but until now i didn't know what it's all about and why it would be different from a setting like Greyhawk or the Scarred Lands.

Robert, short, to the point, and very clear.

btw. this has already been preordered, to this day i have never been disappointed by NG products, so i wasn't expecting anything bad, i just didn't know what to expect.
 

Cergorach said:
Clark, using WotC's 'faults' to sell your own product is a bit like badmouthing the 'competition' in my book. You might want to avoid that in the future.

It isn't backmouthing Wizards and other game companies to put
out weaknesses in their presentation of campaign worlds. I have played since the late seventies. There have been good campaign worlds and bad campaign worlds released but none presented like the Wilderland.

To truly understand what it has to offer download the Rorystone Road supplement on www.judgesguild.com that Clark, Bob, and myself wrote. That is just 1/8 of one map out of 18. Map 1 has over 100 villages and castles described.

Cergorach said:
I can see your very excited about this release, but for someone like me who has only heard that this setting existed a time long ago, far, far away. I don't really care that it's based on a lisence, i (and many with me) want to know about what it's about, as i said the "The Wilderlands Setting" was very helpful, you might want to use that to promote the setting.

The feel of the wilderlands as a whole is swords and sorcery (conan, etc), but with a healthy addition of tolkien.

But the strength of the Wilderland isn't its setting but the details. And there is a lot of detail. When you put the three main products together (Player's Guide, City-State, and Wilderlands). You will definitely have value for your money.

Rob Conley
 

ColonelHardisson

What? Me Worry?
Cergorach said:
And stop mentioning FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA, wtf is FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA,

Frazetta is quite possibly the greatest science fiction/fantasy artist to ever live, and is certainly the greatest one living. He's pretty freakin' famous.

Cergorach said:
why should i care about FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA,

Because he's a fantastic artist.

Cergorach said:
and who cares that the cover is by FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA ;-)

A whole helluva lotta people, that's who.

http://www.frankfrazetta.com/ff/bio/index.html
 

Nellisir

Adventurer
Two things; first, the downloads have pretty much convinced me to pick up at least the initial Wilderlands setting -- the intial blurb about ruined empires sounds right up my alley.

Second, Cergorach has something of a point...I don't know squat about the City-State of the Invincible Overlord, or the Wilderlands. Tell me more about what it is, and less about what it isn't. Telling me it won't be overdeveloped is pointless -- I had immediate flashbacks to the first FR boxed set and the "set-aside" areas of Sembia etc, etc -- such a resolution only lasts until it becomes a burden, then a "reluctant but necessary" step must be taken.

Frankly, I like the Forgotten Realms. I also like Greyhawk. I think I'll like the Wilderlands. But if I buy it, it'll be because of what it is, not because someone took the cheap and easy shots against the other settings I enjoy.

Cheers
Nell.

And, you're setting up the Wilderlands to be the "least awful" option, not the "best" option. I'd rather have people say FR is cool, but Wilderlands is cooler, than have them say Wilderlands doesn't suck as much as FR does.
 
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johnsemlak

First Post
What are the chances this product will be available on Amazon.com. Iv'e checked many times but with no luck. It's my favorite way to order RPG stuff.

I have now noticed it popping up in Amazon's 3rd party stores
 

Nellisir said:
Second, Cergorach has something of a point...I don't know squat about the City-State of the Invincible Overlord, or the Wilderlands. Tell me more about what it is, and less about what it isn't. Telling me it won't be overdeveloped is pointless -- I had immediate flashbacks to the first FR boxed set and the "set-aside" areas of Sembia etc, etc -- such a resolution only lasts until it becomes a burden, then a "reluctant but necessary" step must be taken.

There are two ways to answer your question.

1) It is a package of rules, maps, and description that describe an area of land double the size of france. The individual descriptions are such that it is easy for a GM to incorporate the product into his existing world or to create his own campaign world around.

It is a well executed presention of traditional ideas that have given birth to D&D and Fantasy role-playing. And
presented in a way that is useful to the gamemaster and save hours of work..

2) It is a world of sword and sorcery with a large dose of tolkien. There is a single large empire known as Viridstan that is ruled by two survivors of a decayed race known as the Viridians. Scattered thourghout the Wilderlands are several large city-states that contend among themselves and with Viridstan. Between Viridstan and the various city-states is untamed wilderness filled with monsters and danger.

Each of the city-states have their own character. The most important is the City-State of the Invincible Overlord, a polygot community of 80,000 people. There are over 300 described locations in the city. Which together makes a place that echoes the finest traditions of sword and sorcery. It is also a city that is complete and usable for gaming. There is a chapter devoted to it in the player's guide and like the Rorystone Road addon it is just a taste of the CSIO product is being produced.


Rob Conley
 
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Orcus

First Post
Here is why I say what it is not: I think people ask "why should I change the setting I am using now." It isnt meant as a dig against those settings at all. They are great. I like FR and GH. But they have plusses and minuses. Everything does. There is no perfect setting to everyone.

Plus, if you are happy with your setting, then you wont switch and pick up a new one. I am looking for people who perhaps are using a setting and they dont quite like it 100%. If you are using FR and love it and dont want to switch, then you probably wont pick up the Wilderlands. Or if you like the current GH, same thing. But (here we go again) if you dont like what FR has become (overdetailed and requires too many books) or if you want the classic GH feel that you didnt get from the new GH then maybe this setting is for you.

So when I say FR has gotten too detailed and needs too many books, out there is a person who says "you know what, you are right. I want a setting that is more unknown." Hopefully that person picks up the PGW. Or when I talk about the GH that WotC promised, out there is a person who says "Yeah, I got back into 3E because WotC made me feel like GH was going to be the main setting again. I thought stuff would feel like the old classic days back with Gygax's GH and I feel a bit betrayed because they didnt really do that. I want some classic fantasy gaming a la Fafhrd and Conan. You know, maybe I will pick up that Wilderlands stuff. And hey, cover by FRANK FREAKING FRAZETTA! Even Dungeon Mag never got one of those! That's huge!"

That is why I was using that angle. Not because I was trying to diss the other settings. I was just pointing out that the Wilderlands doesnt have their particular weaknesses. Because you cant argue that the FR is not overdetailed or that WotC did not live up to its promise to revive GH. You just cant.

So then what is the Wilderlands?

It is a setting that doesnt try to be a whole world. It limits itself to detailing an area the size of the Mediterranean Sea.

It is a world where the player characters are the most important characters. Sure, there are a few high level entities--the Green Emperor, the Marmon Witches, the Invincible Overlord, the Prophets of Mycr--but they are limited to their areas. There are no traveling bands of 20th level guys righting wrongs and interceding and fixing things making PCs feel irrelevant.

It is a world in decline where humanity is clawing its way back to where it once was. Where cities of today are built on or near the ruins of the cities of the great Dragon Empire or the Kingdome of Kelnore. It is a setting where there is a good logical reason why there are tons of ruins and dungeons everywhere.

It is a world of high fantasy, where red skinned altanian barbarians war against the green skinned Viridians or the blue ice wizards of Valon, or the swerting goblin men or the great winged apes, or the naked amazon warrior women and their sabretooth tiger pets or the elphand cavemen riding mastodons or dorins of the great desert or the feral dwarves of the southern jungles.

It is a land where the politics are defined by city states. There are no true empires (though the Green Emperor of Viridistan would disagree). There are 6 major city states: Viridistan, the City of Spices and seat of the dying Viridian Empire; the City State of the Invincible Overlord, the most powerful city currently in the world; Tarantis, home of the sea merchants and derisively referred to as the City State of Pirates; Valon, home of the ice wizards and blue skinned avalonians in their gold and silver towers that are built right on the waters of the Uther Pentwegern Sea; Rallu, the City State of the Sea Kings, once a hidden city now exposed to the world; and Tula, the City State of Mages, where all races mingle to learn the wizardly arts and where the seven towers of the seven schools of magic dominate the skyline, a city led by an ancient lizardman-lich.

It is a setting of monsters. Where the demon empires of the south occasionally intrude by sailing their demon barges into the northern lands and raiding. Or the demi-giants of the west make war against the desert lands and the eastern borders of Viridistan.

It is open ended. It can mesh with other settings. The far off Kingdom of Karak can be anything you want it to be. The ancient kingdom of Tarsh is undescribed, so that you can do with it what you want. Not every detail is explained. Instead it is a setting of evocative clues and tantalizing references for you to develop as you see fit.

I hope that helps. Again, when I mention other settings I am not bashing them, I am just trying to tap into feelings that might make people want to switch.

Clark
 


Orcus

First Post
That is another thing about the setting...

Bob Bledsaw is (if this is possible) more comitted to fans than I am. He is a freak for the fans. Thats why he started Pegasus magazine back in the day and gave away great setting stuff in his City State Campaign Installments--pull out parts of the magazine dedicated to the setting.

We are going to continue the tradition in two ways:

1. Tons of downloads. We are already doing that. But we will continue. In fact, I will be posting ALL of the classic City State inserts from ALL of the old Pegasus magazines. Those things are long out of print and I want people to be able to see all the old content.

2. Fan submissions. We fully support fan submissions. We have provided a limited license to use the JG content from the Player's Guide to create fan submissions. So if you have JG stuff or develop it, send it in and share it and we will post it. And you dont have to be a professional cartographer. We will post anything you send it.

Because we are all about the fans.

Clark
 

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