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    Zone 1: Skullreave (UPDATE: Zone Map has been uploaded)

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    Tom.Liles
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    Zone 1: Skullreave (UPDATE: Zone Map has been uploaded)

    Post by Tom.Liles on 2010-02-08, 18:59

    What follows is an attempt to describe a map. Our campaign will be somewhat different from the others I have DM'ed. I've created the first of many zones--explorable areas described on a hex grid. Each and every one of the 71 hexes on every one the maps contains a unique encounter. These encounter could be anything. Dungeons, treasure troves, allies, enemies, near-impassable terrain, campsites, ruins, towns, monasteries, dragon lairs, secret libraries, weapons caches, airship landing sites, Orien trade routes, planar portals, manifest zones, magic fountains, witch's huts, giant bee hives, mysteriously beached whales, localized bad weather, circuses, caravans, tax collectors, bandits, army regiments, floating fortresses, and more.

    Each player gets a copy of the zone's map, and the players may chart any course they chose in approaching their goal. Sometimes the goal will be known (as in this case), other times the map will not be 100% reliable, or the goal will not be marked on the map. Most of the time, players will either know or have the ability to learn what lies ahead, but not always. The players will be able to scout and freely explore each area before moving on to the next. In this way, the players have ultimate control over the game and are guaranteed a unique gaming experience.

    Each zone has a theme that forms the basis of the zone's encounters, allies, and enemies. The theme is going to be somewhat abstract and will be easier to understand if you read the full zone descriptions provided here. Before the game enters a zone, I will, if able, post a description such as this giving out publicly known information about the contents of the zone. Further information is available, but will require effort and resources to get. I will scan the map and upload it here if I ever get to go to school again.

    The following zone is the area nearby Kodos's stronghold in northern Darguun--the one you were going to raid on behalf of House Lyrandar. The goal of this zone is retrieve the box located in the hex west of the ruins of Kodos's fortress. Without an airship or house backing, getting there will not be so easy as before.

    Zone 1: Skullreave (formerly Lestate)
    When the bards sing elegies about Cyre, it’s easy to imagine they were talking about Lestate in its heyday—a land verdant and teeming with possibility. Sadly, those days have long since passed. Although the potential for greatness yet survives in this land, it is abandoned by all but the basest and least imaginative of all creatures, who have given the land a new name—Skullreave.

    This zone is named for the ruins which lie in its north-central section. Skullreave, formerly a Cyran farming town named Lestate, pop. 2,000, was burned 27 years ago by Goblinoid troops during what historians now call Deneith’s Folly. On that night, mercenaries employed by House Deneith for the protection of the Cyre’s southwestern territories went rogue, killing and robbing their human commanders and Cyran civilians. Cyre was caught totally off guard by this action and in short order abandoned the area to focus on other war fronts. Today, the area surrounding Skullreave belongs to the Lhesh Haruch, the aging Hobgoblin leader of the rebellion and now King of the area that was Southwestern Cyre and is now called Darguun.

    Skullreave has not prospered under its new overlord. Distrustful of the hobgoblins, the Dragonmarked houses have been slow to establish ties in the area. In fact, the area is so wild that existing infrastructure like trade routes, flight paths, and lighting rail lines aren’t recognized by the Houses anymore as valid methods of travel. The abandoning of these routes ultimately proved the deathblow to Skullreave, as the Orien Caravans so vital to its survival simply stopped coming. Without regular trade and oppressed by the Lhesh’s government, most survivors of Skullreave simply left for Breland or Thrane.

    In 974 YK, the Lhesh Haruch gave one his warlords, Smey Kodos, a freehold in the area, that he might build a stronghold and collect taxes from the goblin settlers there. He reigned for 15 years before being killed under mysterious circumstances. The Lhesh has been slow in replacing Kodos and lends his personal banner to a seasonal tax collector who brings in the Lhesh’s fair share of grain and gold.

    Today, the area surrounding Skullreave is very, very isolated. The Dragonmarked Houses won’t touch the area with a 9-1/2 foot pole, nor is there any reason to without organized farming and industry in the area. Goblin farmers work the land surrounding the burned out ruins of the town, which most consider haunted. The goblins aren’t very good farmers, but despite their ineptitude there has never been a bad harvest from this region, according to tax records.

    Being in proximity to the Mournland doesn’t help the region’s marketability either. Once or twice, a horror has crept in from the Mournland and preyed on the inhabitants of the region. The Lhesh claims that he takes such incursions very seriously, but on misty nights, the goblin peasants sleep in specially-dug hidey-holes all the same.

    Some patrol reports mention the sighting of Halflings mounted on fastieth or clawfoot dinosaurs. The source of these Halflings or their purpose in the region is unknown, but sightings have been frequent enough to give credence to the idea that there is a settlement nearby. The Lhesh would reward information on this subject handsomely, as a source of Clawfoot mounts would be most prized, as would new tax revenues.

    A fast river runs through the region and is only fordable at certain points, which change depending on the season. The bridge over the river in Skullreave is reportedly intact, but lies at the center of the abandoned town. The ultimate source of the river is believed to be a spring in the surrounding hills enlivened by some ancient and forgotten magic from the Age of Monsters. The River arcs toward the Mournland, and sometimes is contaminated by fell energies exuding from that place. Do not drink the water if it looks strange.

    Kodos’s freehold is actually a House Cannith research facility lost during Deneith’s folly. Several Acquisitions Directorate Operatives have been delayed from recovering research projects due to difficult political exigencies involving the Twelve’s relationship with the Lhesh and, inexplicably, Thrane. The last party to attempt to recover projects was captured by Thrane after brutally killing all goblinoids in the structure, civilian or not.

    Tribes of Wild Humans live in the forests surrounding the old town. They are believed to be survivors of Lestate who have turned to a life of banditry and foraging around the ruins of their former home rather than return to civilization. Contact has been limited, as most fight of these wildlings fight to the death when cornered and have no apparent interest in peaceful contact.

    The ruins of a Cyran watchtower lie somewhere in the plains west of Skullreave. The watchtower was sacked like the town by which it stood sentinel. Efforts to explore the ruins for treasure have led to reported cases of battle madness, blindness, and sudden death by causes unknown.


    The preceding information is widely known to Adventurer’s Guilds, National Governments and the Dragonmarked Houses, and could be turned up for free in the course of diligently preparing for a journey. Additional information is also available, but requires additional research with the possibility of requiring bribery, theft, burglary, blackmail, or other extralegal means of gaining the information. This information is equivalent to achieving a result of 20 on any of the relevant knowledge rolls to learn more about this place


    Last edited by Tom.Liles on 2010-03-26, 13:25; edited 1 time in total
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    Tom.Liles
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    Join date : 2009-11-26
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    Re: Zone 1: Skullreave (UPDATE: Zone Map has been uploaded)

    Post by Tom.Liles on 2010-03-26, 13:24


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