[AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

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Havard
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[AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by Havard »

From my list of AD&D 2nd ed modules, we find the following:
HERO'S CHALLENGE SERIES
  • HHQ1: Fighter's Challenge (January 1992, PDF)
  • HHQ2: Wizard's Challenge (June 1992, PDF)
  • HHQ3: Thief's Challenge (January 1993, PDF)
  • HHQ4: Cleric's Challenge (September 1993, PDF)
  • Fighter's Challenge II (March 1994, PDF)
  • Wizard's Challenge II (September 1994, PDF)
  • Cleric's Challenge II (December 1995, PDF)
  • Thief's Challenge II: Beacon Point (June 1995, PDF)
What is known about the local areas explored in each module? Is there any overlap between them? Would it be possible to connect them into a greater setting or integrate them into one of the published (AD)D&D Settings?

Fighters Challenge
Takes place in a town called Sturnheim

Wizards Challenge
Takes place in Northbank, near the Vaskar Hills and Golmar Forest

Thief's Challenge
Highlands of Garlin. Between the Great Sea and the Desert of Nesh

Cleric's Challenge
I don't own this one

Fighter's Challenge II
I don't own this one

Wizard's Challenge II
Set in New Haven, a community in the lands of Baron Tigus Felmore, near Badlands which were created by the Wizard Neconilis 800 years ago.

Cleric's Challenge II
Set in the Parish of Barlox

Has anyone taken a look beyond the basic research I have provided above?

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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by ripvanwormer »

Havard wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 1:31 pm
Wizard's Challenge II
Set in New Haven, a community in the lands of Baron Tigus Felmore, near Badlands which were created by the Wizard Neconilis 800 years ago.
I wouldn't bother correcting a minor spelling error, except that the spelling used in the book—Felmoor—makes me think of Blackmoor. I think the adventure would actually work really well in that setting (either Arneson's version or Greyhawk's).

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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by Havard »

ripvanwormer wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 2:45 pm
Havard wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 1:31 pm
Wizard's Challenge II
Set in New Haven, a community in the lands of Baron Tigus Felmore, near Badlands which were created by the Wizard Neconilis 800 years ago.
I wouldn't bother correcting a minor spelling error, except that the spelling used in the book—Felmoor—makes me think of Blackmoor. I think the adventure would actually work really well in that setting (either Arneson's version or Greyhawk's).
Ooh! Now that IS a fascinating idea! :)

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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by Dread Delgath »

I had all of the first four modules, and I had two or three of the second set. I designed a campaign setting around them all, using those place names. I filled in a lot of the sparse spaces between with my own stuff. The setting grew to include other 1st ed modules like "To Find a King" and "Bane of Llewelyn" and their environs.

I thought it was a pretty solid 'basic' setting, and my wife (at the time) really enjoyed it.

Eventually, I got the bright idea to place this entire thing in the (at the time) unmapped wilds of the Western Portion of the Oerik Continent, based on a very small continental map in one of the Greyhawk sets - either the Folio or the 1983 boxed set.
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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by Big Mac »

Dread Delgath wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 4:18 pm
I had all of the first four modules, and I had two or three of the second set. I designed a campaign setting around them all, using those place names. I filled in a lot of the sparse spaces between with my own stuff. The setting grew to include other 1st ed modules like "To Find a King" and "Bane of Llewelyn" and their environs.

I thought it was a pretty solid 'basic' setting, and my wife (at the time) really enjoyed it.
Did you ever make a run-down of how everything fitted together?
Dread Delgath wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 4:18 pm
Eventually, I got the bright idea to place this entire thing in the (at the time) unmapped wilds of the Western Portion of the Oerik Continent, based on a very small continental map in one of the Greyhawk sets - either the Folio or the 1983 boxed set.
Was that based on the idea of Greyhawk being the default setting for 1st Edition?
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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by Dread Delgath »

Big Mac wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 10:26 pm
Dread Delgath wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 4:18 pm
I had all of the first four modules, and I had two or three of the second set. I designed a campaign setting around them all, using those place names. I filled in a lot of the sparse spaces between with my own stuff. The setting grew to include other 1st ed modules like "To Find a King" and "Bane of Llewelyn" and their environs.

I thought it was a pretty solid 'basic' setting, and my wife (at the time) really enjoyed it.
Did you ever make a run-down of how everything fitted together?
I drew the maps on poster sized graph paper from a desk blotter. I started with the first 4 HHQ modules, and drew maps to contain all those environs, and I wrote reams of notebook paper of notes on it all.
Big Mac wrote:
Dread Delgath wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 4:18 pm
Eventually, I got the bright idea to place this entire thing in the (at the time) unmapped wilds of the Western Portion of the Oerik Continent, based on a very small continental map in one of the Greyhawk sets - either the Folio or the 1983 boxed set.
Was that based on the idea of Greyhawk being the default setting for 1st Edition?
(scratches head, wondering how to answer this...)

I'd say yes, mostly as to what I think you are asking, but...

I'd say it was based on the idea that Greyhawk was the setting that I wanted to expand on the most at the time and this was right before Greyhawk Wars and From the Ashes.

The years between 1985 and 1995, I had picked up most 1st & 2nd ed sets that intrigued me, and whatever I liked, I crammed into Greyhawk, or allowed travel (via Spelljammer or Planar Travel) to get to the stuff I wanted to run.

When I decided to drop all the "homeless" modules I had into the Western Portion of the Oerik Continent, I had about 12 or more of those desk blotter maps, IIRC, and three 3-ring 1-1/2 inch thick binders of notes connecting it all together. This continued until the "official" Western Portion of Greyhawk was released in Dragon Annual #1 in 1997 (I think that was the year).

I'd also say that the HHQ modules had enough background and local flavor to run just fine, as-is, within a smaller connected campaign. No, the edges of the module maps don't fit together, so I had to fill in a little bit of space between to make it all work.

I also squeezed in the Glitcheegumee Swamp from one of my favorite Dungeon adventures between the maps. ;)
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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by ripvanwormer »

Some ideas for setting these in the Flanaess:

Fighters Challenge
I think this fits well in eastern Sunndi, on the edge of the Vast Swamp. Here's a section of Anna B. Meyer's map keyed with the encounter numbers from Fighter's Challenge. The town of Calgen replaces Sturnheim.

Image

Wizards Challenge
I think this works in Nyrond near the Flinty Hills, with Owlsthorpe replacing Northbank. The forest is only needed so that Joran has a place to find an osquip; this could be the Adri Forest further to the south or he might have simply found it in the hills.

Image

Thief's Challenge
The geography in this adventure is extremely similar to the Gnatmarsh in southern Nyrond, with the Bright Desert corresponding to the Desert of Nesh. There's a nearby mining town in Nyrond, Darkshelf (the location of Skip Williams' A0 Danger at Darkshelf Quarry), but it's not the wealthy seat of government Zadaraq in Thief's Challenge is. That doesn't matter much, since Thief's Challenge doesn't visit Zadaraq. Instead, the town of Beetu takes the place of a wealthy northern city. Hylock becomes Callistor, and Whytelock becomes Paducah. Turtlebay is Nessermouth to the south.

Image

Wizard's Challenge II
As I suggested above, I think this fits well in Blackmoor. Baron Tigus Felmoor is Archbaron Bestmo. Necronilis could be Engrin Erris, the Lich of Glendour mentioned in Oerth Journal #5's history of Blackmoor (and alluded to in the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer).

Cleric's Challenge II
Cienega Valley in Verbobonc, in the Kron Hills, matches Barlox closely as Living Greyhawk described it, since it's a fertile valley known for its wines. Baron Appleby is replaced by Lady Asbury.

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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by lookatroopa »

This may or may not feed into the discussion in a meaningful way, but the wizard Dar Malson and the lich Kyristan from HHQ2: Wizard's Challenge reappear in FOR8: Pages from the Mages, the former being described as a Torilian native and the latter's profile alluding to past membership in the Doomguard, both of them noted to be planewalkers. I'm not sure if this was a one-off "easter egg" (Tim Beach has authorial credit for both books) or if more connections like this exist.

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Re: [AD&D HHQ Series] Setting based in the Hero's Challenge Series?

Post by Havard »

lookatroopa wrote:
Mon Apr 20, 2020 6:06 pm
This may or may not feed into the discussion in a meaningful way, but the wizard Dar Malson and the lich Kyristan from HHQ2: Wizard's Challenge reappear in FOR8: Pages from the Mages, the former being described as a Torilian native and the latter's profile alluding to past membership in the Doomguard, both of them noted to be planewalkers. I'm not sure if this was a one-off "easter egg" (Tim Beach has authorial credit for both books) or if more connections like this exist.
That's a cool factoid. I love connections like this.

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