She created a range of mountains in the North that were named after stars in the Sea of Night. It's a shame this was not followed up in SJR2 Realmspace. I'm wondering what hooks might be made of this.
Here is what Forgotten Realms Wiki has on The Star Mounts:
Can anyone confirm that there were no known passes into the interior of the Star Mounts?The Star Mounts at Forgotten Realms Wiki wrote:Star Mounts
The Star Mounts were an impressive and forbidding range of peaks, located in the center of the High Forest. They were an inspiration for many fanciful tales and wild stories created by local troubadours and woodsmen of the North.
The mountains were very difficult to traverse. The overland terrain was incredibly steep and no known passes extended into its interior. In fact, the center of the mountains contained an elevated valley that was hidden away from the surrounding world.
Snow and inhospitable weather that continued year-round made climbing hazardous, in what was an already remote location. It was impossible for creature less powerful than a dragon to approach the Star Peaks safely by air, due to incredibly high winds which were constantly whipping across the peaks.
Some rumors told that, during the peaceful nights among the Star Mounts, strange flashing lights appeared that attracted or banished dragons and other flying creatures that dared to fly nearby. According to other rumors, the elves created mysterious crystals that illuminated the mountains, while some unknown, sinister constructs emitted beams of light when they were exposed to the moonlight.
The mysterious lights sound fun. I was wondering if they could be beacons (lighthouses?) that help spelljamming ships to land in the valley. But it sounds like the high winds would make that dangerous.
Is there anything in FR5 to expand this valley?
There are supposed to be aarakocras in Wildspace. War Captain's Companion gives them their own ship type. But there isn't really much canon to back them up. They are more of a late insertion into the setting that should have gotten more background. Do you think that an aarakocra spelljamming port would be appropriate for this area?The Star Mounts at Forgotten Realms Wiki wrote:Inhabitants
Some lonely peaks that stood on the mountains' top had a sharp cusp shape. Many people thought that these protuberances were the dwellings of powerful wizards and formidable sorcerers. The vast mountains contained Onthrilaenthor, an abandoned Eaerlanni settlement.
Somehow, aarakocras had manged to bypass the peaks' strong winds and built their nests on them not to far from where the dragons found shelter in nearby caves.
I've not got many thoughts from this, but it does mean that there should be water sources up in the mountains.The Star Mounts at Forgotten Realms Wiki wrote:Geography
The geography of the lands surrounding the Star Mounts were noteworthy. The land north of the range was unusually flat for the most part, while the southern reach was gnarled and extensively twisted.
Both the Unicorn Run and the Hartblood River sprang from the Star Mounts, before they snaked through the surrounding High Forest.
Can anyone confirm the speculation on the Star Mounts being unnatural? What does the canon say about that? (Could that fit in with things like the creation of the Malatra: Living Jungle region?)The Star Mounts at Forgotten Realms Wiki wrote:History
The curious nature of the surrounding terrain and the sudden abruptness of the mountain range, seemingly out of place in the middle of the High Forest, has caused some to speculate that the Star Mounts were not naturally formed. If that was the case, their creation dated back to a time before elven recorded history.
The earliest recorded names for these mountains have been attributed to the elves of Earlann, who named them for the stars in the northern skies. While Bard's Hill, Mount Vision and Hunterhorn possessed the rough translation of their elven names, Far Peak, Mount Journey and Shadowpeak were still occasionally referred to by their original names, respectively Y'tellarian ("The Far Star"), Y'landrothiel ("Traveller's Star") and N'landroshien ("Darkness in Light"). It was believed these names hinted at some larger mystery that lay within the range.
Despite the dangers of traversing the Star Mounts, the elves of Earlann were known to have mined nearly-pure veins of iron and nickel within the Star Mounts.
In the 14th century DR, the ancient green wyrm Elaacrimalicros awakened from within his lair and consumed most of the mountains' aarakocras.
There are a lot of names here. It's a bit confusing when designers do that. But if I understand correctly we have:
- Y'tellarian ("The Far Star") = Far Peak = Bard's Hill,
- Y'landrothiel ("Traveller's Star") = Mount Journey = Mount Vision and
- N'landroshien ("Darkness in Light") = Shadowpeak = Hunterhorn
I'm not sure how you can get a "Far Star" in a crystal sphere (as they would all be the same distance from the centre of the crystal sphere), but a "Traveller's Star" could probably be something that would help you navigate across the land...or maybe something that could help you find a natural portal in the shell of Realmspace.
"Darkness in Light" could perhaps be a star that has a dark middle. Perhaps it could look a bit like a solar eclipse, when it is approached. If N'landroshien was a small "circular star" instead of a bright dot, it might help people navigate around the edge of the crystal sphere.
If the three stars were put together, in a line, it's possible that a line drawn through the Far Star, Darkness in Light and the Traveller's Star might lead directly to a crystal sphere portal (giving the elves a reason to namecheck the three when they name mountains on Toril).
Alternatively, maybe Darkness in Light could actually be a crystal sphere portal that is smack in the centre of a star, where you can fly into the centre and get to the Phlogiston, but if you hit the edges and touch the star stuff, that is very bad news for the ship.
Has anyone read this section of FR5 The Savage Frontier? Have you seen anything that could be raided for a Realmspace campaign?
Is there anything in the canon that clashes with my tinfoil hat theories?