Hollow Moon: Vedal, 8 miles per hex

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Hollow Moon: Vedal, 8 miles per hex

Postby Chimpman » Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:09 am

Maps

Map of the Hollow Moon, Vedal, 8 miles per hex by John Calvin, May 2016 (Work In Progress)
Image Image Image

Comments
1) The area between Mare Crisium and Vedal is highly contended and there should be several ruins along those borders.

Sources:
Inside Matera: The Hollow Moon by Sharon Dornhoff
Hollow Moon: Nearside, 40 miles per hex
Threshold Issue #13 Nations of the Duskward Rim

References
  1. The Moon Wiki
  2. Topographical Maps of the Moon
  3. Moon map
  4. Hollow Moon Nation Overview
  5. http://www.pandius.com/emerge.html
  6. http://www.pandius.com/monsters.html
  7. http://www.pandius.com/lycanthr.html
  8. http://www.pandius.com/sor_efct.html
  9. [Hollow Moon] Ruminations Over a Blue Moon

Thanks to: Thorfinn Tait, for providing some wonderful graphics to use in all of our mapping projects, Sharon Dornhoff for developing the setting.
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Re: Hollow Moon: Vedal, 8 miles per hex

Postby Chimpman » Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:11 am

An excerpt from the Hollow Moon Nation Overview (compiled from Sharon's original notes):

Nation: Vedal
OW Connection: humans and Bhuts from Sind
Arrival Date: ???
HM Location: north shores of Foecunditatis
Cities:

Notes:
1) They believe the same -- and rightly -- of the far shores of Foecunditatis, where many in the montane villages of yaks and goatherds are as human as you or I. Those of Vedal who are not, of course, prey upon those who are.

2) Deslandres and Vedal, Cynidicea and Qaurikka, and the albheldri islands of Haemus all have human populations;

3) Bhut : On Mystara, bhuts appear as humans by day, and scaly, clawed-and-fanged monsters by night; they have no control, conscious or otherwise, over this transformation. Upon coming to Matera, they gained a considerable bonus, in that lunar bhuts can voluntarily shift between their human and monstrous guises, at most times over the course of a month. Only at fulldark -- the 56-hour period of deepest darkness -- do bhuts involuntarily transform into their bestial state; conversely, only at skybright are they "stuck" in their innocuous human shapes. (Individual bhuts which are important NPCs may be given access to the PC4 lycanthropes' skill of Transformation, in order to resist these twice-a-month involuntary shapechanges. A good base for bhuts who are assigned the Transformation skill is 8, as even the strongest of their kind aren't all that good at resisting such changes.) During the remainder of each lunar "day", when it's neither too dark nor too bright, Materan bhuts may transform at will from one guise to another, whenever it suits their purposes. These voluntary changes take 6 rounds to execute... or perhaps less, with the PC4 Quick Change skill.

4) A single werebat entered the Hollow Moon by a remarkable coincidence in 862 AC, after being captured by Glantri's Prince Morphail. Its messy depredations in Glantri City had incited some awkward personal questions, compelling him to hunt it down; more amused than angered, once he realised he didn't have yet another renegade vampire to deal with, the prince offered the terrified creature to Alphaks as a gift, and Alphaks -- equally amused, as he was bored and it grovelled nicely -- plunked it down in the Hollow Moon with vague commands to cause trouble.

5) Mistress Ayvaer currently resides in an ornate pagoda in Vedal's second largest city, where her Cypri skin colour is easily mistaken for that of the locals -- at least, under lunar light -- and where her indifference to the city's omnipresent religious icons and wards against undead baffle those who hunt the spell-casting "vampires" which prey on hapless citizens.

6) Desdemonda is now well over 200 years old, and -- since several of the traditional ingredients of Alphatian "Potion of Longevity" formulas are unavailable on Matera -- has extended her lifespan using the late Volospin Aendyr's longevity-spell ... an ancient Alphatian ritual-magic which requires a living wolf's heart as a material component, and the secret of which she stole from Silverston before she fled the principality. However, the SoR interferes with the spell's youth-restoring functions; if not cloaked in an illusion, Mistress Ayvaer's human body is every bit as decrepit and hideous as her true age implies, and even her bat-form is bald and horribly wrinkled. Recently, she has hit on the notion that it's her lycanthropy which has caused the spell to fail in part, and is considering sending adventurers to the Toroldorsk forests with snares, to see if the heart of a living werewolf will be any more effective.... ;-D

7) Although there are exceptions -- the margasta are every bit as fanatical about mummifying their deceased as Nithians are, and the bhuts of Vedal don't tolerate the competition -- most HM natives have given up on their ancestral burial-customs or cremation practices, in favour of leaving the dead "to lie in state" in some isolated locale, and turning a blind eye to pisachas' comings and goings.

8) There's one more group of Materans who live in hiding among other humans, and change to animal-forms on occasion... but they're NOT victims/carriers of lycanthropy. They're living descendants of the original Alphatian and Flaemish clans -- Padfoot, Woodwarder, Bruin, and War-Tusk -- which carried the genetic shapeshifting trait that modern lycanthropy is a permutation of. When the lycanthropy-plague first broke out on Mystara in 401 BC, Koryis -- the Alphatian Immortal patron of peace, and a member of the Bruin clan in his own mortal life -- realised that it would mean the end for a peaceful existence of the shapeshifter-bloodlines: their abilities, once lauded, would be suspected and fears for as long as the plague's memory lingered.

Not wanting to see his former clan OR its counterparts driven to extinction by humans' blind terrors and hatreds, he discreetly rescued a few select members of each shapeshifter-family from the plague-fearing lynch mobs of the day, and -- since three of the four clans' animal-forms are active primarily at night, and he didn't want his own Bruin-clan to lose touch with the other three -- set them down in the Hollow Moon.

Koryis made sure to place the few shapeshifters he managed to save among HM cultures that weren't hostile to strangers, and in close enough proximity to each other so that they could meet, and maintain their own, Alphatian culture, among themselves. He also altered their body-chemistry slightly, so that HM shapeshifters (which were too few to sustain a viable gene pool, on their own) could intermarry with humans of Mystaran* descent, yet not lose their special powers. Instead, when a shapeshifter and a Materan native were wed, one child in each generation thereafter would be born with the Alphatian parent's gifts. Only if both parents are shapeshifters (of any type) will all children share the ability to transform; in marriages of "mixed" shapes, daughters inherit the mother's animal-form, and sons, the father's.

9) From Sind, originally. Remember how the Sindhis rose up and ousted all those evil shapechangers from power, that used to rule their nation? Most of the imposters could vanish into the population, but bhuts on Mystara don't actually control when they take on a monstrous form. Their kind always change at nightfall, which means that once their cover was blown, they were easy pickings for vengeful Sind heroes. While some fled to Hule, their patron Immortal Jammudharrah successfully perssuaded Ka that evil races had a right to be preserved from extinction too, so the last bhuts in Sind were brought to Matera -- an environment where the usual day/night boundaries are blurred, allowing them far more control over their forms -- along with a human food supply. Think Nepal, for culture.
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Re: Hollow Moon: Vedal, 8 miles per hex

Postby Chimpman » Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:16 am

An excerpt from Threshold #13:

Vedal

Arrival Date
AC 451

On the Outer World
Shapeshifters have been a part of Sindhi culture since its inception. Collectively know as the chambahara, these shape shifting races included were-tigers, rakshasa, dopplegangers, bhut, and others. In AC 186, after the death of Rajah Vijay Pratikuta, his inheritors seized control of the land, dividing it between them into the territories of Jalawar and Jhengal. The corruption and brutality of their rule quickly becomes apparent, and though it is suspected that the Pratikutas may all have been replaced by shapeshifters, the populace can do nothing to free themselves from their tyranny. It seems as if every level of Sindhi society had been infiltrated by the chambahara, and was firmly within their grasp.

In AC 451 a daring group of Sindhi mages, united by Maga Aditi, make an audacious bid to overthrow the chambahara. With amazing alacrity, these mages, calling themselves the Jadugeryas, succeed in their bid for power, and after eliminating the “Pratikutas” and their inheritors, begin the Dark Inquisitions to root out and expose all remaining shapeshifters. The rule of the chambahara was broken for good, however Jammudharrah, patron of the bhut, convinced Ka that the evil races of Mystara deserved preservation as much as the good.

In the Hollow Moon
Tucked away in a remote corner of the Duskward Rim, the nation of Vedal quickly grew into its own. Their borders extend from the southern shores of Mare Crisium along the western coastlines of Mare Fecunditatis. For over 500 years, the chambahara of Vedal, led by the elite nobility of bhuts, has expertly managed their human cattle, expanding their holdings at a phenomenal rate. Few Materan explorers dare to brave these lands, and fewer still are ever allowed to leave.

On Mystara the bhut’s transformation was bound to the night, causing the creatures to change form whether they wished to or not, however inside of Matera things are different. Bhuts are only forced into their monstrous form during the 56 hour period of fulldark, and into their human form during skybright. At all others times the creatures have full control of their shapeshifting powers, allowing them to change form at will. This have given them a tremendous advantage over those that would hunt them, and has allowed them to solidify their control over the populace.

Culture
The nation of Vedal is divided into several clans, each presided over by its own ruling family. Smaller clans in turn are vassals of the larger more powerful clans, with the titular head of the nation being the Pratikuta family. Though each of the clans share a common ancestry, they have diverged over the centuries. They worship the gods, dance, dress, and eat each in their own unique way. To outsiders these differences may go unnoticed, but for a Vedali, these minor variations define their self image.

The real disparity in Vedal exists between the common and the noble, those who are rulers and those who rule over them, the humans… and the monsters. Vedal is a land where the chambahara still reign supreme, secure in their strongholds, and free to harvest the lambs in their flocks as they see fit.

Fire Times
Mountains bordering Mare Crisium in the north harbor some of the more violent volcanoes in the region. Most tend to grumble with smoke and fire on a regular basis, every few years or so, though they erupt violently on somewhat longer schedules. There are few large settlements in the north that have to contend with them however.

Volcanoes in southern Vedal tend to vomit forth slow moving tendrils of magma. Though the timing of these events is well known, the direction these rivers of lava will take is not, and they often cut fiery swaths through towns and villages. Luckily they are slow enough that very few are ever injured or killed in the process.

Adventure Ideas
Upon entering a small village on the outskirts of Vedal, the PCs are increasingly unnerved by the behavior of the locals. Sly and secretive, the villagers welcome the PCs in the light of skybright, yet desperately try to dispose of them once the moon darkens. Although the PCs may suspect the locals of being chambahara, they are in fact simply a small community of Alphatian shapeshifters desperate to keep their identity a secret.
Nearly 150 years ago a single werebat was banished to the Hollow Moon after having caused a certain Glantrian Prince a great deal of embarrassment. The creature, a Cypri named Desdemonda, now masquerades as Mistress Ayvaer and resides in an ornate pagoda in Vedal’s second largest city. A group of locals suspects her of being a vampire, though she has yet to succumb to any of their religious icons and wards. Desperate to deal with this menace, the locals plea for aid from the PCs.
Civil war looms imminent amongst the cities of Vedal, as three of the largest clans vie for ruler over the populace. The Nabendu of the west, controlled by dopplegangers and mujina, gather their forces to face off against the Pratikuta bhuts, who although fractured, are far more numerous than their foes. Little does either side know that the rakshasa lord Indubhushan has maneuvered them both into this battle, and his forces patiently await to dispose of the victor. Should the PCs be clever enough, they may be able to use this conflict to remove the chambahara from power entirely.
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Re: Hollow Moon: Vedal, 8 miles per hex

Postby Chimpman » Wed Jan 04, 2017 5:50 pm

I'm wondering if I've made a mistake with this one. Looking back at my notes I see two different descriptions for where Vedal should go:

They believe the same -- and rightly -- of the far shores of Foecunditatis, where many in the montane villages of yaks and goatherds are as human as you or I. Those of Vedal who are not, of course, prey upon those who are.

HM Location: north shores of Foecunditatis


The first quote is directly from Sharon's material. The second quote however (I think) is something I wrote after reading Sharon's material. I've gone back and done a quick search of the Vaults and couldn't find any reference to the "north shores of Foecunditatis" outside of my own work.

The map that I have drawn of course, places Vedal on the (HM) eastern shores of Fecunditatis. This would jibe with "far shores" as seen from the Margasta trifold isthmus, which is consistent with quote 1 above.

The problem is... now that I look at the map... I think the northern shores might work better... or at least the northeastern shores. So I'm thinking about shifting some of Vedal's southern territory over to fill in the space between the current Vedal and Cacklogallinia's border (across the northern shores of Mare Fecunditatis).

Any thoughts?
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