X9 and Red Steel

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X9 and Red Steel

Post by Havard » Wed Feb 11, 2009 5:25 pm

Does anyone have any thoughts on updating X9 to be used with the Red Steel line?

I just read through it real quick and was surprised how close Bruce Heard kept to the encountered from X9 when he detailed the various races of the Savage Coast. X9 doesn't have all that much of a plot I guess, but what of that golden pyramid? Could there be more to it than just a source of gold?

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Gawain_VIII » Wed Feb 11, 2009 5:41 pm

YAY! I'm not the only one that wants to see this!

I'd do it, but (1) I don't have the requisite SC/RS knowledge and (2) I don't need anything else to distract me from M3e (aside from the many things that already distract me).

I did make a mock-up module cover. I made a negative of the cover (somewhere between gold and orange) but kept a positive-color of the painting, replaced the D&D logo with the SC "pirate" logo (run through a line-art filter), and replaced TSR with VOP sigil. The mock-up module number was "X9a". If I still have it, I'll post it tonight.

And no, there wasn't mugh of a plot at all. I only ran the mod once, and it fell apart for lack of a plot. Add in all the "new" material, and I'm certain that a suitable plot or two would reveal itself.

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Havard » Thu Feb 12, 2009 6:33 pm

Gawain_VIII wrote:I did make a mock-up module cover. I made a negative of the cover (somewhere between gold and orange) but kept a positive-color of the painting, replaced the D&D logo with the SC "pirate" logo (run through a line-art filter), and replaced TSR with VOP sigil. The mock-up module number was "X9a". If I still have it, I'll post it tonight.
Sounds cool, I would love to see that! :)
And no, there wasn't mugh of a plot at all. I only ran the mod once, and it fell apart for lack of a plot. Add in all the "new" material, and I'm certain that a suitable plot or two would reveal itself.
The Plot:
I read through the module real quick the other night. You are right, there is very little in terms of plot. That's not neccessarily a problem with a module, but it will make this project more of a challenge. The plot is basically exploring the SC, and a few examples of of what might motivate the characters to do this are provided in the module. The adventurers start out in Slagovich, but soon make it to the Savage Coast:

The Map:
Let's compare the locations marked on the map from X9 with the updated maps:

1) New Hope Outpost
This corresponds to the Old Fort of Cimmaron County.

2) Native Village
Somewhere upriver from location 1, I figured this is somewhere in the Sierras Desperadas, right between Gnoll and Goblin territories. I'm wondering if the natives here (who are cannibals) should be replaced by one of these goblinoid races. (more on "natives" later though).

3)Second Chance Outpost
This corresponds to the Free City of Dunwick. At the time of X9, it is simply a small outpost run by some religious order.

3a +b) Twin Islands
The Twin Islands (Ihlas Gemeas) are settled according to RS, but according to X9, T-Rexes hang out here.

4) Lawful Alliance Camp
This corresponds to Louvines, the capital of Renardy. In X9, it is described as a Lupin camp. I guess the camp grew since then.

5) Neutral Alliance Camp
This corresponds to Wickerton (Wiskerton), a town in Bellayne. In X9, it is a Rakasta/Human (Pagan) camp.

6) Aranea Lairs
This is not far from either Huuzu or Azrath Castle in Herath.

7)Peaceful Outpost
This is an outpost inhabited by "Natives" and Clerics. It corresponds to the city of Shahay, Herath.

8) Gold Camp
This is somewhere upriver from location 7. Possibly close to the town of Shaai, Herath.

9)Aranea Lair
This is somewhere along the Widow River in Western Herath.

10) Forbidden River Outpost
Near Ugmar in the Dark Jungle. This outpost has been destroyed by a Gargantuan White Ape which stalks this jungle.

11) Egg-laying Grounds
Corresponds to the Old Tortle Egg-Laying Grounds on the Orc's Head peninsula. Tortles have constructed protective fortresses here.

12) Gold Camp
This corresponds to Ajuma, Jibaru. It is home to "natives".

13) Phanaton Settlement
Corresponds to Tucua, Jibaru.

14) Lost City of Risivar
This corresponds to Risivar, the capital of Wallara. I guess it aint lost anymore?

15) Caymen Compound.
This corresponds to Gurr'ash, the capital of the Gator-Men

16) Seaview Outpost.
Corresponds to seaview outpost. In X9 the Outpost has been destroyed by fire. Apparently it has been reconstructed by AC1010.

It is actually surprising how close Bruce kept to X9. He has simply turned the various camps and such into nations. This supports the idea that X9 should be moved back in time to a period when the SC nations had not yet been founded and when the Thyatians and others were exploring the area for the first time.

I'm still not clear on all these references to "natives". Are those people remnants of the old Oltec population or should they be changed to non-humans in an updated version?

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Wilhelm » Fri Feb 13, 2009 9:19 am

Hi guys!

Make X9 and Red Steel/Savage Coast work together is something I've been working on with Giampaolo for some time (or, more exactly, make the whole setting fits with all different versions of it and small clues left here and there, plus make it fit with (at least most of) the fan material produced so far). Or, actually, I'm no longer working on that... personal life getting on the way :cry:

Anyway, originally my idea was to, as you said, update X9 into the modern SC. Since most of my campaigns at the SC never left the Gulf of Hule (even if having some Renardois and Bellainish characters), my idea was to place the "final ruin" (that replaces Risilvar) at Grande Carrascal, Buenos Vientos. So, basically, it would have only the two inicial locations in common (New Hope Outpost/Old Fort and Long Legs Camp/Native Village), but the structure of the adventure itself would remain the same (including the step pyramid close to Buenos Vientos, an Otzil (Oltec) ruin).

I still like this idea, but after a while, I really wanted to also have a more canon X9 that still fits the SC as we know it, even if at its past. If fact, I've realised that some of my players had some problems with some aspects of the SC setting, especially the Lawful Brotherhood and its modern counterparts, Order of the Ruby and the LB Trading Co. Besides, I was planning to make shorter campaigns, never reaching high levels (really low level campaign), but letting the players interact with the history of the region, playing with the descendets of the original characters. So, they would be able to witness the history of the SC and help to shape it.

Talking with GP, we concluded that a more likely yar for X9 taking place with almost no changes would be c. 550 AC, when the ancestrals of Robrenn and Eusdrian just arrived and those of Renardy and Bellayne still organising themselves; but at the same time, the traladarans already had some time to settle the east half of the Gulf of Hule and the LB can still be a religious order. This way, almost nothing has to be changed (although I do like to use Long Legs gnolls as the Natives close to New Hope; and I do also like to change the events that take place in each LB outpost: for example, putting T-Rex Aldizog's tale closer to Twin Islands, making New Hope a more receptive place, etc).

OTOH, I do imagine this adventure with much more than is shown at X9, such as what the PCs will find at what will be Robrenn some day (that I imagine as neathar m-celtic humans and elves with low tech weapons and primitive societies and a lot of body paiting (some sort of a mix of stereotyped Picts and stereotyped amerindians). And, why not, an town (pehaps the LB capitol?) at the feet of Mt Aa, which erupts while the PCs comes close (that's because I's planning to use this picture for the cover of this revamped X9; I'm using the original pcture of X9 for an modure describing the migration of the traladarans to the SC at c. 450 AC). And, of course, make it somewhat mirror the VotPA own journey at the region. ;)

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by agathokles » Sat Feb 14, 2009 8:04 am

Well, indeed almost all X9 fits AC 550, with the exception of Herath, which was never a primitive human nation (the area was already inhabited by Aranea masquerading as human mages since much earlier).

Note that the lost city of Risilvar is still lost in some sense, since the Wallara have not recovered their ancient technology and culture, so most of the old Risilvar is probably buried well under the modern Risilvar.

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Wilhelm » Sat Feb 14, 2009 10:10 am

agathokles wrote:Well, indeed almost all X9 fits AC 550, with the exception of Herath, which was never a primitive human nation (the area was already inhabited by Aranea masquerading as human mages since much earlier).
Indeed, Herath is, by far, the biggest problem for this idea. One idea that could be used is that Herath itself is, by c. 550 AC, mostly Magus Rex region only; Ensheya (Gold Camp, that will become Sorodh) and Hethzya (Peaceful Outpost, that is modern Shahav) are, officially, LB domains, but they're heavily infiltrated by araneas posing as LB clerics. So, if X9 implies that Herath is a savage, almost empty land, that's just because the araneas want it this way, pehaps for avoid too mch attention from the LB and the newcomers traladarans ;)
Note that the lost city of Risilvar is still lost in some sense, since the Wallara have not recovered their ancient technology and culture, so most of the old Risilvar is probably buried well under the modern Risilvar.
That's something that always made me wonder, how exactly is modern Risilvar, if it became once again the capitol of the wallarans because of the events of X9, how much the wallarans recovered from the aranea curse thanks to the exploration of Risilvar, etc

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Havard » Sat Feb 14, 2009 7:45 pm

Wilhelm wrote:Hi guys!

Make X9 and Red Steel/Savage Coast work together is something I've been working on with Giampaolo for some time (or, more exactly, make the whole setting fits with all different versions of it and small clues left here and there, plus make it fit with (at least most of) the fan material produced so far). Or, actually, I'm no longer working on that... personal life getting on the way :cry:
Wilhelm!
Its great to hear you two have been working on this. Thanks for sharing what you have so far. Hope you will be able to return to this project at some point :)

Anyway, originally my idea was to, as you said, update X9 into the modern SC. Since most of my campaigns at the SC never left the Gulf of Hule (even if having some Renardois and Bellainish characters), my idea was to place the "final ruin" (that replaces Risilvar) at Grande Carrascal, Buenos Vientos. So, basically, it would have only the two inicial locations in common (New Hope Outpost/Old Fort and Long Legs Camp/Native Village), but the structure of the adventure itself would remain the same (including the step pyramid close to Buenos Vientos, an Otzil (Oltec) ruin).
It would be a miniature version of X9. Interesting! :)
I still like this idea, but after a while, I really wanted to also have a more canon X9 that still fits the SC as we know it, even if at its past. If fact, I've realised that some of my players had some problems with some aspects of the SC setting, especially the Lawful Brotherhood and its modern counterparts, Order of the Ruby and the LB Trading Co. Besides, I was planning to make shorter campaigns, never reaching high levels (really low level campaign), but letting the players interact with the history of the region, playing with the descendets of the original characters. So, they would be able to witness the history of the SC and help to shape it.
Using X9 to explore the history of the Savage Coast was what got me interested in this, not the least the evolution of the Brotherhoods and their modern day counterparts.
Talking with GP, we concluded that a more likely yar for X9 taking place with almost no changes would be c. 550 AC, when the ancestrals of Robrenn and Eusdrian just arrived and those of Renardy and Bellayne still organising themselves; but at the same time, the traladarans already had some time to settle the east half of the Gulf of Hule and the LB can still be a religious order. This way, almost nothing has to be changed (although I do like to use Long Legs gnolls as the Natives close to New Hope; and I do also like to change the events that take place in each LB outpost: for example, putting T-Rex Aldizog's tale closer to Twin Islands, making New Hope a more receptive place, etc).
550 AC, okay that's cool, we have a timeframe for the module now (even with the Herath problem GP mentioned). Aldizog the T-Rex is interesting. He seems to be getting around alot anyway, doesn't he? How long do such creatures live anyway? How about incorporating more Savage Coast specific monsters with these encounters? (From the SCMC for instance).
OTOH, I do imagine this adventure with much more than is shown at X9, such as what the PCs will find at what will be Robrenn some day (that I imagine as neathar m-celtic humans and elves with low tech weapons and primitive societies and a lot of body paiting (some sort of a mix of stereotyped Picts and stereotyped amerindians). And, why not, an town (pehaps the LB capitol?) at the feet of Mt Aa, which erupts while the PCs comes close (that's because I's planning to use this picture for the cover of this revamped X9; I'm using the original pcture of X9 for an modure describing the migration of the traladarans to the SC at c. 450 AC). And, of course, make it somewhat mirror the VotPA own journey at the region. ;)
Cool covers! What would be really awesome would be to have a cover almost identical to the one from X9, except replacing the characters with Rakasta, Lupin, Robrenn, Eusdria and Savage Barony characters.

For this project I would love to see some focus on what you mention here: How do the groups and races from X9 develop into the nations and organizations from Red Steel?

Four human groups are mentioned in X9 and Tortles of Purple Sage, which also may be of interest exploring:

Natives, Pagans and Nomads.

Natives: While some Natives might be replaced with Gnolls or other humanoids, I'm guessing most of these would be descendants of the Oltecs. A thought that struck me: Could Athruagin and his associate pantheon have spread their influence among these peoples aswell?

Pagans: My initial guess would be that these would be the ancestors of the Robrenn. They are described as nature-worshippers so it makes sense. OTOH, I suppose they could also include the Eusdrians? In any case, in a historical campaign, the ancestors of the Eusdrians should also be part of the adventure.

Nomads: These are more problematic. Are they also Oltecs?

Dervishes Early immigrants from Ylaruam? Actually, looking at the RS book, the Ylarii have only been around for a century. I guess these would be descendants of the Nithians?


Here's an idea for a related project: How about a Return to the Savage Coast module? This module will also be one of which takes heroes across the Savage Coast, visiting the various nations of the modern SC. It will be set after WotI. With Alphatia gone, a new balance is being established between the nations of the Known World. These nations also seek new allies. News spread by the tales of Haldemar of Haaken make many of these nations interested in seeking out allies on the Savage Coast. Hule has also been weakened at this time providing an opportunity to reopen diplomatic ties to the Savage Coast nations. The PCs are representatives of a KW country, meeting with the rulers of each nation (or their representatives) trying to befriend these. Alternately, they could be members of KW trading houses trying to establish new trade routes. Agents of Hule and others will be working behind the scenes trying to stop this from happening ofcourse. I will be the Chaotic Alliance all over again... :twisted:


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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Cthulhudrew » Sat Feb 14, 2009 8:51 pm

Havard wrote:Natives: While some Natives might be replaced with Gnolls or other humanoids, I'm guessing most of these would be descendants of the Oltecs. A thought that struck me: Could Athruagin and his associate pantheon have spread their influence among these peoples aswell?
There's a line I noticed the other day in either Red Steel or the SC Monstrous Compendium referring to the recent arrival of horses in the Savage Coast. Now, it seems a bit incongruous to me that horses wouldn't have been around all along given that they have been around for ages in the Known World region (at least since 1675 BC when Tahkati Stormtamer was uniting the tribes and- according to his legend- being the first to domesticate the horse; presumably even longer since the Ethengarians arrived in the KW in 2000 BC, although perhaps they were not yet horse nomads at this point in time). We also know that the Urduk in the Sind Desert/Great Waste use horses- perhaps gained from the Atruaghin people?

In any event, the Great Waste and Black Mountains should not, then, pose that large a hazard to horsemen that they should only be recent arrivals to the Savage Coast. But in any event- perhaps Tahkati Stormtamer is responsible for seeing that horsemanship and the domestication of horses spread further from the early Atruaghin tribes? In such a case, he may have more influence than we know. Aside from possibly being a member of the Ethengari pantheon (albeit a previously unmentioned one, but we've only had three mentioned before so that's no big deal), then maybe he brought some influence to the SC as you suggest. If Tahkati Stormtamer was there, then the other Atruaghin Immortals might not be that far behind.
Nomads: These are more problematic. Are they also Oltecs?
I'd assume the Nomads could be any of the humans, rakasta, or lupins that still roam the Yazak Steppes and fight against the goblinoids that also roam there. The Pagans would probably then be those human tribes that were driven out of the steppes, but have not yet formed their more feudal states of Eusdria and Robrenn (and whatever Bellayne was before the humans were killed by plague and the rakasta took over).
Dervishes: Early immigrants from Ylaruam?
I'd think Huleans might be more likely. In any event, given that Al-Kalim didn't rise to prominence until c. 900 AC, and the spread of the Eternal Truth didn't come until later than that, I think you have to disassociate the RW notion of Islam with these particular Dervishes, and just assume that they are some kind of general ascetic practitioners of some other religion.
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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Havard » Sat Feb 14, 2009 9:33 pm

Cthulhudrew wrote:There's a line I noticed the other day in either Red Steel or the SC Monstrous Compendium referring to the recent arrival of horses in the Savage Coast. Now, it seems a bit incongruous to me that horses wouldn't have been around all along given that they have been around for ages in the Known World region (at least since 1675 BC when Tahkati Stormtamer was uniting the tribes and- according to his legend- being the first to domesticate the horse; presumably even longer since the Ethengarians arrived in the KW in 2000 BC, although perhaps they were not yet horse nomads at this point in time). We also know that the Urduk in the Sind Desert/Great Waste use horses- perhaps gained from the Atruaghin people?.
I agree, that doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Also, the presence of Nomads in the X9/ToPS material would suggest that there were horses around back then. Although I suppose you can have nomads without horses. Another reason why I brought up the Athruagin Immortals is that I think it is a shame that we have all these Immortals focusing only on such a small area. Also, this would allow us to have more Native American inspired cultures than just in the Athruagin Clans area.
In any event, the Great Waste and Black Mountains should not, then, pose that large a hazard to horsemen that they should only be recent arrivals to the Savage Coast. But in any event- perhaps Tahkati Stormtamer is responsible for seeing that horsemanship and the domestication of horses spread further from the early Atruaghin tribes? In such a case, he may have more influence than we know. Aside from possibly being a member of the Ethengari pantheon (albeit a previously unmentioned one, but we've only had three mentioned before so that's no big deal), then maybe he brought some influence to the SC as you suggest. If Tahkati Stormtamer was there, then the other Atruaghin Immortals might not be that far behind.
I would like to see this explored more. Ofcourse, followers of these religions may not be accepted among the dominant Kerendan/Traladaran derived churches.
Nomads: These are more problematic. Are they also Oltecs?
I'd assume the Nomads could be any of the humans, rakasta, or lupins that still roam the Yazak Steppes and fight against the goblinoids that also roam there. The Pagans would probably then be those human tribes that were driven out of the steppes, but have not yet formed their more feudal states of Eusdria and Robrenn (and whatever Bellayne was before the humans were killed by plague and the rakasta took over).
The Nomads are allied with the Rakasta, so it is unlikely that they are Lupins. Oltecs, perhaps resembling Plains Indians would be interesting here.

Pagans would be ancestors of Robrennese and Eusdrians. Although I think it would be more in line with the D&D designations to have the Eusdrian ancestors be referred to as "Barbarians". (more on this below).

Dervishes: Early immigrants from Ylaruam?
I'd think Huleans might be more likely. In any event, given that Al-Kalim didn't rise to prominence until c. 900 AC, and the spread of the Eternal Truth didn't come until later than that, I think you have to disassociate the RW notion of Islam with these particular Dervishes, and just assume that they are some kind of general ascetic practitioners of some other religion.[/quote]

Yes, you are right about severing the connection to Islam. The RC defines Dervish as "Desert Raiders". They are also described as religious fanatics who sometimes embark on "holy wars". OTOH they are Lawful and allied with the LB according to ToPS. I think you missed my edit in my previous post. I also noticed it would be too early for Al-Kalim/Ylaruam to be involved and I suggested descendants of the Nithians as a possibility, but Huleans would work just as well. These would likely be groups that have been driven away from Hule due to their adherance to Law, rather than Chaos.

Ofcourse, there is also the interesting connection between the term Dervish and the Desert Druid class from the Ylaruam gaz...

Back to the D&D classifications of humans; I think these should mainly be read as something to do with the kind of climate/terrain the humans occupy, although the descriptions from the rulebooks also have suggestions on religious practices etc.

What you have are things like:
Dervish: Desert
Nomad: Plains
"Wild Men" and Pagans: Forest, Moor
Barbarian: Northern Plains, Tundra
Native: Tropic, Jungle

I guess none of these terms are very politically correct, but I guess that is another story :|

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Andaire » Sun Feb 15, 2009 9:20 am

Could dervishes also be from Yavdlom? Wouldn't that fit with the Serpent Peninsula of the same time period?
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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Havard » Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:22 pm

Andaire wrote:Could dervishes also be from Yavdlom? Wouldn't that fit with the Serpent Peninsula of the same time period?
I don't know enough about Yavdlom history, I was hoping someone else might be able to help out?

I find it interesting that the Pagans are allied with the Rakasta, while the Dervishes are allied with the Lupins. Could this be traced to modern relations between the nations?

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Wilhelm » Tue Feb 17, 2009 10:12 am

Havard wrote:Wilhelm!
Its great to hear you two have been working on this. Thanks for sharing what you have so far. Hope you will be able to return to this project at some point :)
:D
550 AC, okay that's cool, we have a timeframe for the module now (even with the Herath problem GP mentioned). Aldizog the T-Rex is interesting. He seems to be getting around alot anyway, doesn't he? How long do such creatures live anyway? How about incorporating more Savage Coast specific monsters with these encounters? (From the SCMC for instance).
IIRC, X9 mentions a whole T-Rex family (something between 4 or 7, I think). Probably there were many Aldizogs, and many claims of killing the "true" Aldizog :)

And yes, that's exactly what I was planning to do, brining some of the SCMC monsters into this adventure. The afflicted creatures (such as the Vermilion Dragon and the Afflicted Troll) would be found only at the Red Curse pockets (the first one at Terra Vermelha, the other one probably at Guadalimas/Colinas Grutescas; other pockets, such as El Grande Carrascal, Bosque de las Sombras, parts of the Pampa Rica and, why not, parts of the La Pineda (pehaps that's what destroyed Los Elegidos?) whould have their own afflicted monsters as well).

Other monsters, not too tied with the Red Curse could be placed where they can still be found nowadays, such as the Feliquines, Lupasus, etc.
Cool covers! What would be really awesome would be to have a cover almost identical to the one from X9, except replacing the characters with Rakasta, Lupin, Robrenn, Eusdria and Savage Barony characters.
Thanks!

And yes, I'd rather use X9 cover once more, pehaps an edited version of it. The only problem is that X9 cover has nothing to do with the adventure itself ("medieval knights riding at a dry canyon" and "naval exploration" don't match well, IMHO ;)). So, I used X9 cover as part of the traladaran past, the painting of the Battle at Kastr Pass, and used the CoA shown at there as the CoA beared by c.450 AC traladarans, that evolved into modern SC traladaran CoA;)

And, besides, that's the cover of DA4 The Duchy of Ten ;)
Natives: While some Natives might be replaced with Gnolls or other humanoids, I'm guessing most of these would be descendants of the Oltecs. A thought that struck me: Could Athruagin and his associate pantheon have spread their influence among these peoples aswell?
Good question. Personally, I'd stick with Ixion and ocasionally Ka (especially for another of my projects with GP, one last surviving Otzil ("mayan" oltec) city-state at the GoH by c. 900 AC, Tehil (that was where we have the modern Ciudad Tejillas; but their pantheon also includes some LB immortals and even some traladaran immortals, added after they contacted each other), but I don't see why they can't be used :)
Pagans: My initial guess would be that these would be the ancestors of the Robrenn. They are described as nature-worshippers so it makes sense. OTOH, I suppose they could also include the Eusdrians? In any case, in a historical campaign, the ancestors of the Eusdrians should also be part of the adventure.
Or we could keep eusdrians as part of the LB, if we use Christian Constantin's and GP's articles about the Brotherhoods' past (that links the LBs and the northern barbarians). But I think my personal view of Eusdria (an Mystaran XVI century Holy Empire that have Low German as their tongue (and the LB as their Hanseatic League) + the dwarves as M-Swiss Mercenaries + the elves as descedents of the Sheyallians) may be quite different from what most imagine Eusdria. :)
Dervishes Early immigrants from Ylaruam? Actually, looking at the RS book, the Ylarii have only been around for a century. I guess these would be descendants of the Nithians?
There were, actually, two different imigrations of Ylari peoples to central Brun/GoH regions: the one that originated Saragón (that's tied with the Ispan migration itself, since both peoples are closely tied) and the one that gave Sind and, likely, Hule, their "Middle East" feel, that happened c. 250 AC, when displaced ylari (by thyatian colonists, ancestors of modern Ispans) entered Darokin and then, Sind. :)
Here's an idea for a related project: How about a Return to the Savage Coast module? This module will also be one of which takes heroes across the Savage Coast, visiting the various nations of the modern SC. It will be set after WotI. With Alphatia gone, a new balance is being established between the nations of the Known World. These nations also seek new allies. News spread by the tales of Haldemar of Haaken make many of these nations interested in seeking out allies on the Savage Coast. Hule has also been weakened at this time providing an opportunity to reopen diplomatic ties to the Savage Coast nations. The PCs are representatives of a KW country, meeting with the rulers of each nation (or their representatives) trying to befriend these. Alternately, they could be members of KW trading houses trying to establish new trade routes. Agents of Hule and others will be working behind the scenes trying to stop this from happening ofcourse. I will be the Chaotic Alliance all over again... :twisted:
That reminds me very much of that two vapourware adventures for the SC, the Slagovich Conspiracy and... well, I forgot the name of the other one :)

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Wilhelm » Thu Feb 19, 2009 10:43 am

RSA1 Rif-Raf Barons. This adventure brings player characters from the traditional Known World to the Savage Coast. They have been hired to seek valuable merchandise from a local baron, and ship it back to a Minrothad Guild merchant prince. They are authorized to buy the secret merchandise with weaponry that could allow the baron to crush a rebellion. Will they side with their employer? Will they turn to the insurgents? Will they listen to rival barons?

RSA2 Slagovich Conspiracy. The wealthy Hierarch of Slagovich dreams of becoming a greater king and is plotting to have various rif-raf barons marry his sisters. But the rebels are watching and plan mischief of their own. The player characters are hired to escort the youngest sister safely across the Gulf of Hule to one of the baronies. The Hierarch plans to have the barons assassinated later and seize power for himself in the name of Greater Slagovich. The plot thickens when the PCs discover the Slagovich Maidens are not the true sisters of the Hierarch either. They are impostors serving The Master, Ruler of Hule.
I wonder if this "local Barón" of RSA1is "El Salvador" Don Esteban, and if at RSA2, the PCs would actually save him (and other two Baróns... pehaps Dom Fernando, heir of Vilaverde and Margrave Munte of Zagora?) from a greater evil, the Master of Hule. :)

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by paleologos » Mon Jun 14, 2010 5:01 am

This is a great thread. The idea of properly fleshing out X9 to make it work is growing on me. Since CoM puts X6 Quagmire! into the past, the timing of X9 circa 550 BC is appropriate. Here are some ideas along those lines:

The Plot:

I think the most appropriate plot graft for X9 would be to focus on the conflict between the Lawful Brotherhood and "The Brotherhood of Light". The module eventually reveals that the Brotherhood of Light is actually Chaotic, and is attempting to destroy all of the outposts of the Lawful Brotherhood. There are five outposts, two of which (the most distant two) are already destroyed when the PCs arrive.

The PCs get a cold reception at the first outpost (New Hope) but this is understandable if the clerics inside somehow know that the PCs have had contact with the Brotherhood of Light (as per one of the story hooks at the beginning of the module). This makes the comment about "honour" more understandable when directed to a Lawful cleric in the group (but no less perplexing to the players, who might not yet suspect the Brotherhood of Light is actually chaotic).

The PCs might get more information at the next outpost (Second Chance) in which it may be revealed to them by the prior that the Brotherhood of Light are actually chaotic. The purposes of the Lawful Brotherhood might be described (to protect and convert the natives) although nothing would be mentioned about panning for gold, etc.

The PCs then get forewarned at the next outpost (Peace) that contact has been lost with the other outposts further west, and it is feared that the Brotherhood of Light has made their move and attacked the more far-flung outposts. This is of course the case, but at least the PCs may find tracks leading them to the secret headquarters of the Brotherhood of Light.

The two destroyed outposts are in relative close proximity to the Forbidden Highlands and the Lost City of Risilvar, so having "The Brotherhood of Light" base the activities of a Chaotic Alliance out of Risilvar is reasonable. There are one or two 5th level female magic-users and one or two male magic-users in Risilvar, possibly representatives of the allied Chaotic Sisterhood and disguised Herathian araneas.

The Lost City can easily be spruced up considerably. There may have been some text inadvertantly deleted from the module, since five of the preserved buildings are implied to have contents and/or inhabitants, but no descriptions are given.

I would make the Step Pyramid the headquarters of the Chaotic Brotherhood of Light, using the virtually identical map of the Step Pyramid of Atzanteotl from HWR1 Sons of Azca, and having the Chaotic Brotherhood worship Atzanteotl in his ancient, ruined, temple. The presence of members of the Chaotic Sisterhood (who could worship Hel) would beef up the opposition and serve as a hook for TotPS. Throw in a Herathian contingent of araneas and some snappers in the unkeyed buildings and you've got a really tough battle for the PCs. Moreover, if the fight is going against them, many of the Chaotics can flee using the Wheel of Infinite Travel and live to fight another day.

Encountering the Lawful and Neutral Alliance camps earlier would also help with setting up TotPS as a sequel. Note that the "pagans" use teepees, and might best be modeled after Plains Indians (or the Atruaghin "Children of the Horse"). There are no dervishes in X9, but these were probably thought of as being similar to the dervishes in X4. Maybe the nomads were also based on those in X4/5?

Oh, and one last thing...
Wilhelm wrote:The only problem is that X9 cover has nothing to do with the adventure itself ("medieval knights riding at a dry canyon" and "naval exploration" don't match well, IMHO.
I was likewise mystified by the cover of X9, until I saw the full painting by Parkinson in "The Art of the Dungeons and Dragons game". There is a ruined ship perched high above the cliffs - the knights are riding down the canyon to the Forbidden Highlands (the one with the merchant Akobaan's ship). This is another great encounter, and represents another hook for TotPS in the form of the quest for the Great Northway (Akobaan's journal is retrievable and readable, according to the module).

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Eric Anondson » Wed Jun 16, 2010 4:14 am

paleologos wrote:
Wilhelm wrote:The only problem is that X9 cover has nothing to do with the adventure itself ("medieval knights riding at a dry canyon" and "naval exploration" don't match well, IMHO.
I was likewise mystified by the cover of X9, until I saw the full painting by Parkinson in "The Art of the Dungeons and Dragons game". There is a ruined ship perched high above the cliffs - the knights are riding down the canyon to the Forbidden Highlands (the one with the merchant Akobaan's ship). This is another great encounter, and represents another hook for TotPS in the form of the quest for the Great Northway (Akobaan's journal is retrievable and readable, according to the module).
I'd love to see a scan of that.
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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by paleologos » Wed Jun 16, 2010 11:44 am

Eric Anondson wrote:I'd love to see a scan of that.
You got it - I need to retrieve it from storage but will definitely find it, scan it, and post it. I'll need at least until this weekend. Stay posted...

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Eric Anondson » Sun Jun 20, 2010 7:06 am

Hope you haven' forgotten! :D
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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by paleologos » Sun Jun 20, 2010 6:02 pm

No way!

I dug it up yesterday and scanned the image (the book is 25 years old and I didn't want to crack the spine, so I cropped the left margin, since I couldn't flatten it):

Image

It's a real beauty. Here is the corresponding text from X9:
Crushed Ship

If the characters follow the river to the end, they discover a dry and desolate desert canyon carved by the river that once reached that far. If the characters wish to go further, they must walk or ride their mounts through this canyon. Four miles into the canyon, they discover an abandoned ship.

"Twenty feet above the valley floor on a narrow ledge lies a jumble of curved wooden planks and heavy beams. The area is peppered with large lion tracks".

The wood is the crushed remains of a large sailing ship which belonged to Akobaan the gold merchant. Its hull was crushed against a riverbank by a floating island. The ship sank fairly intact with its crew and trading supplies aboard. Following an earthquake, the river's course changed, stranding the ship high and dry.

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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Eric Anondson » Mon Jun 21, 2010 2:28 am

Very cool. Glad to be able to see it after all!
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Re: X9 and Red Steel

Post by Hugin » Mon Jun 21, 2010 4:07 am

It's so cool to see the whole picture after so many years. Thanks for posting, paleologos!

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