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Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:03 am
by Cthulhudrew
I originally started this thread on the Mystara boards at the Wizards' forums, and will continue to update it over there with the new info I've put together, but in the meantime, I'll also repost it here. The old thread hasn't made the move to the newly separated Mystara forum over there, and I'm not active enough on those forums to bother trying to get it moved, so it just appears in the generic "Other Worlds" category currently.

In any case, prompted by a thread about the WotI and X10's placement, I thought I'd repost this. It's just a listing of the various B-M modules, their locations on Mystara, and the time periods that they would/should/could fit into, given later canonical developments of Mystaran history.

It's not intended to serve as a constraint on running any of these modules, but just as a general reference guide.

Module Placement Quick-Reference Table
B Series Modules
M/Invisible Ink Series Modules
X Series Modules
Other X Series Modules
O Series Modules
DDA Series Modules
HWA Series Modules
HWQ Module
DA Series Modules
CM Series Modules
M Series Modules

Module Placement Table

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:08 am
by Cthulhudrew

Code: Select all

Module                             Time          Location

B1: In Search of Adventure         1000 AC       Karameikos
B2: The Keep on the Borderlands    1000 AC       Karameikos
B3: Palace of the Silver Princess  1000 AC       Karameikos
B4: The Lost City                  1000 AC       Ylaruam 
B5: Horror on the Hill             1000 AC       Karameikos
B6: The Veiled Society             Questionable  Karameikos
B7: Rahasia                        1000 AC       Darokin
B8: Journey to the Rock            1000 AC       Karameikos
B9: Castle Caldwell and Beyond     1000 AC       Karameikos
B1-9: In Search of Adventure       1000 AC       Karameikos
B10: Night’s Dark Terror           Any           Karameikos
B11: King’s Festival               1000 AC       Karameikos
B12: Queen’s Harvest               1000 AC       Karameikos
BSOLO: Ghost of Lion Castle        Any           Ethengar

M1: Blizzard Pass                  Any           Five Shires
M2: Maze of the Riddling Minotaur  Any           Any

X1: Isle of Dread                  Any           Sea of Dread
X2: Castle Amber                   979 AC        Glantri
X3: Curse of Xanathon              Any           Vestland
X4: Master of the Desert Nomads    1005 AC       Great Waste
X5: Temple of Death                1005 AC       Hule
X6: Quagmire!                      425 BC        Serpent Peninsula
X7: War Rafts of Kron              Any           Sea of Dread
X8: Drums on Fire Mountain         Any           Sea of Dread
X9: The Savage Coast               900 AC        Savage Coast
X10: Red Arrow, Black Shield       1006 AC       Known World
X11: Saga of the Shadow Lord       930 AC        Wendar
X12: Skarda’s Mirror               1000          Karameikos
X13: Crown of Ancient Glory        975 AC        Vestland
XL-1: Quest for the Heartstone     Questionable  Ghyr
XSOLO: Lathan’s Gold               970-1010 AC   Sea of Dread
XS2: Thunderdelve Mountain         Any           Thunderdelve Mountain

O1: The Gem and the Staff          Any           Anywhere
O2: Blade of Vengeance             Any           Alfheim

DDA1: Arena of Thyatis             1000 AC       Thyatis
DDA2: Legions of Thyatis           1000 AC       Thyatis
DDA3: Eye of Traldar               1000 AC       Karameikos
DDA4: The Dymrak Dread             1000 AC       Karameikos

HWA1: Nightwail                    1004 AC       Glantri/Azcan Empire
HWA2: Nightrage                    1004-1005 AC  Nithian Empire
HWA3: Nightstorm                   1005 AC       Shahjapur
HWQ1: The Milenian Scepter         1010 AC       Milenian Empire

DA1: The Kingdom of Blackmoor      1000 AC/Any   Broken Lands/Blackmoor
DA2: Temple of the Frog            1000 AC/Any   Broken Lands/Blackmoor
DA3: City of the Gods              1000 AC/Any   Broken Lands/Blackmoor
DA4: The Duchy of Ten              1000 AC/Any   Broken Lands/Blackmoor

CM1: Test of the Warlords          1000 AC       Norwold
CM2: Death's Ride                  Any           Norwold
CM3: Sabre River                   Any           Norwold
CM4: Earthshaker!                  Any           Norwold
CM5: Mystery of the Snow Pearls    Any           Any
CM6: Where Chaos Reigns            Any           Any
CM7: Tree of Life                  1000-1006 AC  Alfheim
CM8: Endless Staircase             TBA
CM9: Legacy of Blood               Any           Darokin

M1: Into the Maelstrom             1000 AC       Norwold/Old Alphatia
M2: Alphaks' Revenge               TBA           Norwold
M3: Twilight Calling               TBA           Broken Lands
M4: Five Coins for a Kingdom       TBA           Norwold
M5: Talons of Night                TBA           Isle of Dawn

IM1: The Immortal Storm            TBA   
IM2: Wrath of Olympus              TBA
IM3: 

B Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:10 am
by Cthulhudrew
B1: In Search of Adventure
Location: Cruth Mountains of Karameikos.
Location Notes: The Expert Set map of the Known World depicts the module as taking place in the Cruth Mountains of Karameikos, northeast of Luln. A brief mention in B1-9 seems to support this theory.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The history given for Zelligar and Rogahn might fit well in either the Halav era of Karameikos (c. 1000 BC) or in the subsequent Dark Ages of the realm.
Continuity Problems: The module itself suggests placing it in the Barony of Ratik, Duchy of Tenh, or Theocracy of the Pale, in the world of Greyhawk.
See Also: B1-9
References: 1983 Expert Set, Gaz1, B1-9 (p. 23)

B2: The Keep on the Borderlands
Location: Castellan Keep, Altan Tepes Mountains, Karameikos.
Location Notes: Gaz1, the Expert Set map, and B1-9 suggest using Castellan Keep as the titular keep, but recommends removing the town within.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The module is fairly generic, and can easily be inserted into any campaign, in just about any realm.
Continuity Problems: The map of the area surrounding the keep within the module does not seem to quite conform to the expected terrain of the Altan Tepes around Castellan.
See Also: B1-9, Return to the Keep on the Borderlands
References: 1983 Expert Set, Gaz1 (p.40), B1-9 (p.35)

B3: Palace of the Silver Princess
Location: Valley of Haven, eastern Karameikos.
Location Notes: The Expert Set map, Gaz1, and B1-9 depict the module as taking place in the eastern part of Karameikos.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: This is a fairly generic module. Some minor changes may need to be made depending on where it is placed, however (see below).
Continuity Problems: The original orange cover module (available at Wizards of the Coast as a free download) places the module atop the plateau to the west of Glantri, and also provides some detailed campaign notes for the region (including other towns).
See Also: B1-9 (p.46), Gaz1 (p.40)
References: 1983 Expert Set, Gaz1, B1-9, B3 (orange cover)

B4: The Lost City
Location: Alasiyan desert, between Parsa and Sulba, Ylaruam.
Location Notes: The Expert Set map and B1-9 depict the module as taking place in Ylaruam.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: A fan gazetteer expanding on the history and culture of Cynidicea is available at the Vaults of Pandius. As the module features a desert and Egyptian like settings, the only places it would fit well in Mystara would be Ylaruam, Thothia, or possibly somewhere in the Savage Baronies.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: 1983 Expert Set, B1-9 (p.96)

B5: Horror on the Hill
Location: Guido’s Fort, upriver from the Barony of Kelvin, Karameikos.
Location Notes: The suggested location is from module B1-9.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: Guido’s Fort and the Hill of the Hobgoblin King can be placed easily anywhere.
Continuity Problems: Guido’s Fort is located along the river Shrill in the module, but there is no Shrill river noted on the Karameikos maps. Shrill may be a tributary of the Hillfollow (Shutturgal) River, or a local name.
References: B1-9 (p.61)

B6: The Veiled Society
Location: City of Specularum, Karameikos.
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in the city of Specularum.
Time Period: 1000 AC+ or 1,013 AC+ or (see below)
Staging Suggestions: The module is designed explicitly for Mystara, and develops a criminal organization within Specularum. It would require some substantial changes to move it elsewhere, though it could be reworked for another metropolitan setting (ex. Thyatis, Darokin, Slagovich)
Continuity Problems: The module seems to be set around 1,000 AC, as the age of Anton Radu matches his age in Gaz1, and Stephen Karameikos is still a Duke within the module. K:KoA lists Anton Radu as still alive at the time of that boxed set, though it lists him as 73 (when he should be 75 in 1012; it should be noted that K:KoA has some other internal continuity problems however). Additionally, the city of Specularum is renamed Mirros in 1012 AC, and Stephen Karameikos becomes a king in 1006 AC.
References: B1-9 (p.112), Gaz1, K:KoA.

B7: Rahasia
Location: Forest near Selenica, off the Duke’s Road, Darokin.
Location Notes: This is the suggested location from module B1-9. The Arabian style influences present in the module would make placement near to a desert land (such as Ylaruam) a likely setting.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: There are some expanded descriptions of the history and culture of the Siswa elves, the Black Opal Eye, and more on the Vaults of Pandius.
Continuity Problems: None, with the possible exception of fitting in the Arabian-elvish culture close to the more traditional elvish cultures of nearby Alfheim.
References: B1-9 (p.5, 77)

B8: Journey to the Rock
Location: Several hours north of Threshold, Karameikos.
Location Notes: B1-9 suggests placing the adventure in the Threshold region. The module itself suggests placing it northwest of Threshold, in the Cruth Mountains northwest of Wereskalot (Five Shires), or in the mountains and hills north of Lake Amsorak (Darokin).
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: Given the history and geography of the module, it is difficult to easily drop into any location in Mystara. The suggested locations do not fit terribly well. Placing it somewhere near the Savage Coast or Sind might fit better.
Continuity Problems: The terrain around the Manor and Hall of the Rock do not fit in well with the suggested locations. A fan map fitting the module to the northeast of Threshold is available on the Mystara Message Boards.
References: B1-9 (p.14)

B9: Castle Caldwell and Beyond
Location:
  • A) The Clearing of Castle Caldwell and B) Dungeons of Terror: Antilles Castle, five miles west of Threshold, Karameikos
    C) The Great Escape: Black Eagle Barony, Karameikos
    D) Elwyn's Sanctuary: Near Threshold, Karameikos
    E) The Abduction of Princess Sylvia: No suggestion
Location Notes: B1-9 provides the suggestions for the locations of these mini-modules.
Time Period: If using the suggested locations from B1-9, then A) and B) must take place between 1000 and 1011 AC, as Clifton Caldwell dies in 1011 AC. C) must take place between 970 AC and 1010 AC, as the Black Eagle is deposed in 1010 AC.
Staging Suggestions: The mini-adventures can easily be dropped into just about any setting with no changes necessary. The exception would be E), due to it being situated in a kingdom (changes to names and/or titles might be necessary to utilize this adventure). Note that in the original module, some names have been changed in D), and the introduction featuring warring kingdoms from C) doesn’t quite match the suggested location of Karameikos.
Continuity Problems: See above.
References: B1-9 (p.5, 23, 30), PWA1012 (p.112)

B1-9: In Search of Adventure
Location: Various (see above entries)
Location Notes: See above entries
Time Period: 1000 AC, or between 1000 AC and 1006 AC.
Staging Suggestions: This mega-module describes Karameikos in the 1000 AC era, and lists Stephen Karameikos as a Duke (thus, prior to 1006 AC). It places all of the B1-9 modules in Karameikos or the surrounding regions.
Continuity Problems: See individual module entries.
References: See individual module entries.

B10: Night's Dark Terror
Location: Various locations in Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Karameikos, taking the PCs on a tour throughout the country.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The module was designed specifically for Karameikos and expanded upon the history of that nation. It would require extensive reworking to place it anywhere else.
Continuity Problems: Some differences between the calendar presented in the module and the calendars of the Gazetteers.
References: N/A

B11: King’s Festival
Location: Near Stallanford, north of Penhaligon, Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Karameikos
Time Period: 1000 AC; the module makes explicit mention that it is set four years after Arteris Penhaligon succeeded her father in his position.
Staging Suggestions: This is a fairly basic module, expanding some of the terrain of Karameikos.
Continuity Problems: None
References: Gaz1 (p.39)

B12: Queen’s Harvest
Location: Near Stallanford, north of Penhaligon, Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Karameikos.
Time Period: 1000 AC; this module is a direct followup to B11. It also references notable NPCs of Karameikos.
Staging Suggestions: This is a fairly basic module, expanding some of the terrain of Karameikos.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: Gaz1 (p.39)

BSOLO: Ghost of Lion Castle
Location: Sea of Grass, Ethengar Khanates
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in the Ethengar Khanates.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: This is a fairly basic module, easily transposed to any other setting.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: N/A

M/Invisible Ink Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:13 am
by Cthulhudrew
M1: Blizzard Pass
Location: Cruth Mountains between the Five Shires and Darokin
Location Notes: The group play portion of the module places it explicitly here. An article in Dragon magazine suggests placing it between Ringrise and Mar (source?)
Time Period: Any, though see below
Staging Suggestions: The module uses an NPC known as the Master, an evil cleric. It is also written by David Cook, the writer of modules X4 and X5. If choosing to make this the same Master from those modules, then M1 could take place around the time those modules are run, as if the Master’s forces had invaded Darokin and were closing in on the Shires. (See X4, X5, X10)
Continuity Problems: None.
References: X4, X5, X10

M2: Maze of the Riddling Minotaur
Location: Island of Vacros, location undetermined
Location Notes: The module is set among the islands of Vacros and Cathos, which have no specific setting in Mystara. A possible location is in the seas near to Minaea, on Skothar.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: This is a fairly basic module, easily transposed to any other setting.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: N/A

X Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:14 am
by Cthulhudrew
X1: Isle of Dread
Location: Isle of Dread, Thanegioth Archipelago, Sea of Dread
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: Given the nature of the module, it can easily be run at any time, or even transposed to other locations.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: N/A

X2: Castle Amber
Location: Near Glantri City, Glantri (also other worlds)
Location Notes: The module explicitly mentions beginning in Glantri, and the d’Ambrevilles are explicitly connected to that country.
Time Period: 979 AC; this is the date given in PC4 for the return of the d’Ambrevilles to Mystara.
Staging Suggestions: With some modification, the module could easily begin anywhere (as the mists need not be bound in one location, swallowing the adventurers up wherever they may be). Also, given the existence of time travel within the module, it could potentially take place at any time for the PCs, despite the d’Ambrevilles being returned in 979 AC.
Continuity Problems: The module’s description of the d’Ambrevilles doesn’t quite conform to later depictions of the characters and their history. Notably, Etienne is specifically mentioned as having been the seventh prince in the line, as opposed to later depictions of him as the first.
References: Gaz3, PC4

X3: Curse of Xanathon
Location: Town of Rhoona, Vestland
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in Rhoona, as noted in the module and on the Expert Set map
Time Period: Anytime prior to 1013 AC or 1150 AC (see below)
Staging Suggestions: Module can be moved elsewhere with some degree of change necessary.
Continuity Problems: Stephen Rhoona is noted as being the duke in module X13, which could create some problems of placement (see X13). Despite acknowledging Rhoona as a duchy, Gaz7 names its ruler as Gudwulf the Golden rather than Stephen. The ducal palace is noted in Gaz7 as still being under construction in 1000 AC, as it is in the module. Joshuan’s Almanac specifically mentions the past insanity of Stephen Rhoona and Xanathon’s curse. In Gaz12, set in 1000 AC, it is specifically noted that Jaku the Render has been tasked by Cretia with the construction of a temple to him in Rhoona, and that the temple is nearly complete.
References: X13 (p.2, 60), Gaz7 (Player’s Guide, p.14, DM’s Guide, p.16), Joshuan’s Almanac (p.163), Gaz12 (DM's Guide, p. 27)

X4: Master of the Desert Nomads
Location: Sind and the Great Waste
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region by the maps within. The Expert Set map has arrows showing its location to the northwest of Glantri, however.
Time Period: 1005 AC, or 1200 AC
Staging Suggestions: Given the source material of the module (Hule, Sind, the Republic of Darokin) and the settings (desert), numerous changes would be necessary to place it anywhere else.
Continuity Problems: The Gazetteers retrofit module X4 into the future of 1200 AC, presumably so as not to make great changes to the historical era presented in those accessories. With the release of WotI and CoM, however, the new time frame of these modules seems to have been set in 1005-1006 AC. (see X5, X10)
References: WotI (p.78), CoM (Explorer’s Manual, p.2), Gazetteers (various, though first noted in Gaz1, p.15)

X5: Temple of Death
Location: Hule
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region by the maps within. The Expert Set map has arrows showing its location to the northwest of Glantri, however.
Time Period: 1005 AC, or 1200 AC
Staging Suggestions: Given the source material of the module (Hule, Sind, the Republic of Darokin) and the settings (desert), numerous changes would be necessary to place it anywhere else.
Continuity Problems: The Gazetteers retrofit module X5 into the future of 1200 AC, presumably so as not to make great changes to the historical era presented in those accessories. With the release of WotI and CoM, however, the new time frame of these modules seems to have been set in 1005-1006 AC. (see X4, X10)
References: WotI (p.78), CoM (Explorer’s Manual, p.2), Gazetteers (various, though first noted in Gaz1, p.15)

X6: Quagmire!
Location: Serpent Peninsula
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region and develops the Serpent Peninsula for the first time in detail.
Time Period: 425 BC
Staging Suggestions: It would be possible to set this in the modern day era without too much trouble; the chief problem would be to note that Thanopolis is no longer a ruined city inhabited by lizardmen, but a fully functional city inhabited by the Yavdlom people. (See below)
Continuity Problems: The module was retrofit into Mystara’s past, due to later developments of the Yavdlom Divinarchy in the VotPA series. However, as that area is still largely unexplored and undeveloped beyond Thanegia Island and the interior of the Karimari, it wouldn’t be too difficult to place this module at an alternative time period.
References: CoM (Explorer’s Manual, p.2)

X7: War Rafts of Kron
Location: Sea of Dread
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region by the maps within.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: None.
Continuity Problems: PC3 lists the city of Suthus as being inhabited by shark-kin as of 1000 AC, rather than tritons.
References: PC3 (p.?)

X8: Drums on Fire Mountain
Location: Island of Teki-Nura-Ria, Sea of Dread
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region (southeast of Thyatis)
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: This module could be easily retrofit to any island region.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: N/A

X9: The Savage Coast
Location: Savage Coast region
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region and develops these lands for the first time
Time Period: c. 900 AC
Staging Suggestions: Given the very barebones nature of the module, it wouldn’t actually be too difficult to place this in the modern era. One would simply have to incorporate modern geographical and cultural features of the region to flesh it out.
Continuity Problems: Later developments of the Savage Coast in VotPA and Red Steel make areas of this module invalid. There is a suggestion in an article in Dragon magazine (source?) that it be retrofit into the past of the region.
References: Various

X10: Red Arrow, Black Shield
Location: All across the Known World
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region by the maps within
Time Period: 1005-1006 AC, or 1200 AC
Staging Suggestions: Given the source material of the module (Hule, Sind, the Republic of Darokin) and the settings (desert), numerous changes would be necessary to place it anywhere else.
Continuity Problems: The Gazetteers retrofit module X10 into the future of 1200 AC, presumably so as not to make great changes to the historical era presented in those accessories. With the release of WotI and CoM, however, the new time frame of these modules seems to have been set in 1005-1006 AC. (see X4, X5) Note that the module itself utilizes many NPCs known from the modern period of the Known World (notably some Glantrian personalities, Duke Stephen Karameikos, and the Black Eagle Baron), though certain aspects seem at odds with those presented in the Gazetteers (the Northern Reaches don’t quite correspond to the Gaz, Atruaghin, etc.)
References: WotI (p.78), CoM (Explorer’s Manual, p.2), Gazetteers (various, though first noted in Gaz1, p.15)

X11: Saga of the Shadow Lord
Location: Wendar, Denagoth
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in these regions, and provide the first description of them.1
Time Period: 930 AC
Staging Suggestions: To follow strictly from the dates given in the module and elsewhere, it is necessary to run this module in the past. However, many different solutions have been offered to alter the timelines so that the module can be run in the present; they can be found on the Vaults of Pandius.
Continuity Problems: The module references that it at the time it takes place, Gylharen has been king “almost thirty years). Joshuan’s Almanac note that he became king in 901 AC. PWA 1010 notes he received the Elvenstar around 900 AC, but also notes that Wendar became a nation around 200 years ago (c.810) when that event occurred. Gylharen himself is a man in X11, but is changed to an elf in a reference on TM1 and in later sources.
References: PWA1010 (p. 88, 141), TM1, JA (p.117)

X12: Skarda's Mirror
Location: Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region
Time Period: 1000 AC; the ages given for various NPCs conform exactly with those in Gaz1. Reference is also given to Skarda in Joshuan’s Almanac, set in 1013 AC.
Staging Suggestions: Though explicitly set in Karameikos, with some changes it could easily be set elsewhere.
Continuity Problems: Halia Antonic is listed as being age 26 in the module, as well as in Gaz1. She is also listed as being 26 in K:KoA, which is set 13 years after Gaz1 (one of many internal continuity problems of K:KoA).
References: Gaz1, JA (p.162)

X13: Crown of Ancient Glory
Location: Vestland
Location Notes: The module is explicitly set in this region
Time Period: 975 AC, 986 AC, or 1150 AC
Staging Suggestions: Given the continuity problems with this module, it wouldn’t be overly difficult to transplant it elsewhere.
Continuity Problems: PWA 1010 notes that King Harald was known to Thyatian historians as Tenitar, son of High King Maramet, “some 35 years ago” (975 AC). Joshuan’s Almanac lists Harald’s date of coronation as 986 AC. Gaz7 notes that King Maramet dies in 1150 AC (placing it in the future if using that reference). No mention is made in Gaz7 of all the nobles (and dominions) that are present in the module, though it does note that for the last 3 decades (c.970) the Trollheim Homesteading Acts had been providing feudal style titles and lands to nobles (all rescinded as of 1000 AC), which might explain the presence of the nobility if the module is set in the past. See also X3, as Duke Stephen Rhoona is explicitly mentioned in this module, and that creates continuity problems with the staging here and of that module.
References: JA (p.162), PWA 1010 (p.86), Gaz7 (p.6)

Other X-Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:14 am
by Cthulhudrew
XL-1: Quest for the Heartstone
Location: Ghyr
Location Notes: The module takes place near the kingdom of Ghyr, located near the Mountains of Ice, which are not explicitly located on Mystara.
Time Period: Pre-1000 AC or 1001-1004 AC
Staging Suggestions: The module can pretty well be placed anywhere in a mountainous region. A likely location is somewhere near the Icereach Mountains of Norwold.
Continuity Problems: The module can pretty well take place at any time. If one assumes that the LJN Toy Characters are the NPCs who take part in it, it could create some continuity problems. Strongheart and Mercion are listed as King and Queen of Ierendi in module X10, and they (along with Figgen, Elkhorn, Ringlerun, and Peralay) are described as being retired from adventuring (as well as being Companion level characters). This would then mean that XL-1 must take place either before 1000 AC (when Palfrit and Marianne rule Ierendi), or between 1000 AC and 1005-1006 AC (when the Master of Hule invades the Known World). As Strongheart and Figgen are both mentioned in Gaz4, either of these choices would fit. From their histories, the LJN characters did take place in some kind of Heartstone Quest, though it need not necessarily be module XL-1 itself; the DM could assume they were part of an earlier quest, thus avoiding continuity problems and allowing his players to run the module as suits their campaign.
References: AC1, X10 (p.16), Gaz4 (p.23)

XSOLO: Lathan’s Gold
Location: Sea of Dread
Location Notes: The module takes place in various locations throughout the Sea of Dread
Time Period: Anytime between 970 and 1010 AC
Staging Suggestions: The module can more or less be run at any time that is convenient for a campaign. The main portion of the adventure (Lathan’s Gold) deals with the kidnapping of Lathan’s betrothed by the Black Eagle Baron, and so must take place sometime during the course of that character’s reign in Karameikos.
Continuity Problems: None
References: Gaz1

XS2: Thunderdelve Mountain
Location: Thunderdelve Mountain
Location Notes: Thunderdelve Mountain and the dwarven Halls of Paradise can be dropped into any mountainous locale on Mystara with no problems.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: Some good locations for Thunderdelve Mountain might be in Norwold, the Black Peaks, or the Khurish Massif- anywhere there might be some dwarven ruins that are long abandoned.
Continuity Problems: None
References: N/A

O Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:15 am
by Cthulhudrew
O1: Gem and Staff
Location: Luho and the Fazzlewood
Location Notes: The Fazzlewood and Luho are locations not placed anywhere on Mystara. They can be dropped just about anywhere with no conflict with the module.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: What little bit of information on the locations of the module there are indicate that Luho must be near (or within) an Empire, as the main character is said to have stolen the Royal Scarab from the governor’s palace, placing him at risk peril at the hands of the Imperial Guard. Given the two main antagonists are powerful wizards, somewhere within the Empire of Alphatia might be a good setting for this module.
Continuity Problems: None
References: N/A

O2: Blade of Vengeance
Location: Alfheim
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in the Emerlas, the northern tip of the Canolbarth forest, in the kingdom of Alfheim.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The location of Khordarg’s lair in the mountains north of the Canolbarth and the notion that the dragon has an army of humanoids working for him mesh very well with the notions of the humanoid fortifications of C’Kag or Xorg in Gaz11 (perhaps the flame spewing Khordarg is the one pushing the trolls of C’Kag in their territorial ambitions, for instance).
Continuity Problems: None
References: Gaz11 (p.35, 44)

DDA Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:16 am
by Cthulhudrew
DDA1: Arena of Thyatis
Location: Thyatis City, Thyatis
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Thyatis, and utilizes information from DotE, and expands upon same.
Time Period: 1000 AC
Staging Suggestions: The module is intended as a prequel to DDA2, which is set explicitly in 1000 AC, and so logically would fall in the same time period.
Continuity Problems: None
References: DDA2

DDA2: Legions of Thyatis
Location: Thyatis City, Thyatis
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Thyatis, and utilizes information from DotE, and expands upon same.
Time Period: 1000 AC
Staging Suggestions: Based on the history given for the NPC Angelarian Canolocarius, the module would seem to take place in 1000 AC (the time of DotE). In any event, it would need to take place prior to 1012 AC (when Helenites Osteropolous and Thincol I both meet their deaths).
Continuity Problems: None
References: DotE (p.30)

DDA3: Eye of Traldar
Location: Fort Doom, Black Eagle Barony, Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Karameikos, utilizes information from Gaz1, and expands upon same.
Time Period: 1000 AC, or anywhere between 970-1006 AC
Staging Suggestions: Like other modules in the DDA series, DDA3 is created to make use of and complement the materials of the Gaz line of products, and it would appear to be set in the same era. In any event, it needs to take place at some point during the reign of the Black Eagle Baron and before Duke Stephen proclaims himself king.
Continuity Problems: The module mentions that a man named Sverdlov is the Black Eagle’s new Court Wizard, which would seem to conflict with information from Gaz1 that Bargle is his Court Wizard. Suggestions are a) that the module is set prior to 1000 AC (a reference on p.17 stating that Karameikos was “only recently unified by Duke Stephen” would help to support this theory), and Sverdlov was a Court Wizard prior to Bargle, b) Ludwig has more than one Court Wizard, or c) this adventure is set sometime post-1000 AC but prior to 1006 AC and Bargle is for some reason out of favor in the Black Eagle’s court, though he later regains his position.
References: Gaz1 (p.58)

DDA4: The Dymrak Dread
Location: Dymrak Forest, Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Karameikos, and can be used as a followup to module DDA3. As it is a very generic dungeon crawl, however, it can be set anywhere with little need for change.
Time Period: 1000 AC
Staging Suggestions: As it can be run as a followup to DDA3, it should theoretically take place after the date of that adventure. It can easily be dropped into any time period, however, with no difficulties.
Continuity Problems: None
References: N/A

HWA Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:16 am
by Cthulhudrew
HWA1: Nightwail
Location: Glantri and the Azcan Empire, Hollow World
Location Notes: The module begins in the Outer World, then takes the PCs into the Azcan Empire of the Hollow World.
Time Period: 1004 AC
Staging Suggestions: Based on the age of the ruler of Shahjapur (from HWA3 and the PWAs), and the status of Harald of Haaskinz of Glantri as an Archduke, the HWA series of modules must begin some time early in 1004 AC (prior to Harald becoming a Prince) and end sometime around 1005 AC (when Koriktodeva Raya turns 28). This could fit in well with the raging Wrath of the Immortals in the Outer World, explaining in part why Thanatos is not involved in that conflict and why he is so easily able to dupe the entirety of the Immortals in his plot (in this instance, he only need dupe those Immortals not involved in WotI). In any event, the series must take place prior to 1010 AC, when Queen Tafiri is put to death, and by which time Azcotica has replaced his father, Moctitlapac, as Emperor of the Azcan Empire.
Continuity Problems: In WotI (DM’s Guide), Thanatos is not listed as the ruling Hierarch of Entropy (Hel is); presumably, the Stroke he suffers at the end of HWA3 is the cause of his loss of status (which he then regains at the end of WotI). If so, that would presume that the HWA series takes place prior to 1000 AC. However, the Thanatos/Hel hierarchy is further muddled by the HW DM’s Guide, which has Thanatos as the Hierarch of Entropy and is also set in 1000 AC.
References: HWA3 (p.18), Gaz3, PC4, PWA1011 (p.142), WotI (DM’s Guide)

HWA2: Nightrage
Location: Nithian Empire, Hollow World
Location Notes: The module takes place explicity in the Nithian Empire of the Hollow World.
Time Period: 1004-1005 AC
Staging Suggestions: Based on the age of the ruler of Shahjapur (from HWA3 and the PWAs), and the status of Harald of Haaskinz of Glantri as an Archduke, the HWA series of modules must begin some time early in 1004 AC (prior to Harald becoming a Prince) and end sometime around 1005 AC (when Koriktodeva Raya turns 28). This could fit in well with the raging Wrath of the Immortals in the Outer World, explaining in part why Thanatos is not involved in that conflict and why he is so easily able to dupe the entirety of the Immortals in his plot (in this instance, he only need dupe those Immortals not involved in WotI). In any event, the series must take place prior to 1010 AC, when Queen Tafiri is put to death, and by which time Azcotica has replaced his father, Moctitlapac, as Emperor of the Azcan Empire.
Continuity Problems: In WotI (DM’s Guide), Thanatos is not listed as the ruling Hierarch of Entropy (Hel is); presumably, the Stroke he suffers at the end of HWA3 is the cause of his loss of status (which he then regains at the end of WotI). If so, that would presume that the HWA series takes place prior to 1000 AC. However, the Thanatos/Hel hierarchy is further muddled by the HW DM’s Guide, which has Thanatos as the Hierarch of Entropy and is also set in 1000 AC.
References: HWA3 (p.18), Gaz3, PC4, PWA1011 (p.142), WotI (DM’s Guide)

HWA3: Nightstorm
Location: Shahjapur, Hollow World.
Location Notes: The module takes place explicitly in Shahjapur, and introduces and explores that region for the first time.
Time Period: 1005 AC
Staging Suggestions: Based on the age of the ruler of Shahjapur (from HWA3 and the PWAs), and the status of Harald of Haaskinz of Glantri as an Archduke, the HWA series of modules must begin some time early in 1004 AC (prior to Harald becoming a Prince) and end sometime around 1005 AC (when Koriktodeva Raya turns 28). This could fit in well with the raging Wrath of the Immortals in the Outer World, explaining in part why Thanatos is not involved in that conflict and why he is so easily able to dupe the entirety of the Immortals in his plot (in this instance, he only need dupe those Immortals not involved in WotI). In any event, the series must take place prior to 1010 AC, when Queen Tafiri is put to death, and by which time Azcotica has replaced his father, Moctitlapac, as Emperor of the Azcan Empire.
Continuity Problems: In WotI (DM’s Guide), Thanatos is not listed as the ruling Hierarch of Entropy (Hel is); presumably, the Stroke he suffers at the end of HWA3 is the cause of his loss of status (which he then regains at the end of WotI). If so, that would presume that the HWA series takes place prior to 1000 AC. However, the Thanatos/Hel hierarchy is further muddled by the HW DM’s Guide, which has Thanatos as the Hierarch of Entropy and is also set in 1000 AC.
References: Gaz3, PC4, PWA1011 (p.142), WotI (DM’s Guide)

DA Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:17 am
by Cthulhudrew
DA1: Kingdom of Blackmoor
Location: Kingdom of Blackmoor/Broken Lands
Location Notes: The module begins explicitly in the Broken Lands and continues on into the Kingdom of Blackmoor, in Mystara’s past.
Time Period: Various (begins 1000 AC, but the bulk of the adventure is around 4000 BC, and the last portion is a few years after 1000 AC)
Staging Suggestions: The module is set in the “present day” of the Known World as described in X1, with the time of Uther Andahar and the Kingdom of Blackmoor 4,000 years before that. The later Gazetteers set the “present day” in 1000 AC, with the Blackmoor cataclysm in 3000 BC, and the module is said to take place 1000 years before the cataclysm (so 4000 BC); these would seem to be the best dates to go with. The Prison Out of Time is set a few years later, which would put its staging around the time of the Wrath of the Immortals, though given the problems exiting the Inn, it is unlikely that adventurers would cross campaigns. Given the nature of time travel in the module, it could potentially be staged at any time.
Continuity Problems: The module contradicts the Gazetteers on when the Kingdom of Blackmoor was relative to the present day. Page 8 and 9 note that the Comeback Inn exists 4000 years before present (BP), and page 2 note that the cataclysm that destroyed Thonia (the Great Rain of Fire) was 3,000 BP (placing the time of Uther in 3000 BC). Gazetteer 1 confirms these dates, but beginning with Gazetteer 2, an extra millennium is added, such that the Great Rain of Fire is now considered to have taken place in 3,000 BC (or 4000 BP), which would place the time of Uther as 4000 BC.
References: Gaz1 (p.15), Gaz2 (p.5)

DA2: Temple of the Frog
Location: Kingdom of Blackmoor/Broken Lands
Location Notes: The module begins explicitly in either the Broken Lands or the Kingdom of Blackmoor, in Mystara’s past.
Time Period: Various (begins 1000 AC, but the bulk of the adventure is around 4000 BC). The module appears to take place a few weeks after DA1.
Staging Suggestions: The module begins in either the “present day” of the Known World or in the time of Uther Andahar and the Kingdom of Blackmoor, 4,000 BC. Given the nature of time travel in the module, it could potentially be staged at any time.
Continuity Problems: None within the module itself, but see entry for DA1.
References: DA1, Gaz1 (p.15), Gaz2 (p.5)

DA3: City of the Gods
Location: Kingdom of Blackmoor/Broken Lands
Location Notes: The module begins explicitly in either the Broken Lands or the Kingdom of Blackmoor, in Mystara’s past.
Time Period: Various (begins 1000 AC, but the bulk of the adventure is around 4000 BC). The module takes place two months after DA2.
Staging Suggestions: The module begins in either the “present day” of the Known World or in the time of Uther Andahar and the Kingdom of Blackmoor, 4,000 BC. Given the nature of time travel in the module, it could potentially be staged at any time.
Continuity Problems: None within the module itself, but see entry for DA1.
References: DA1, DA2, Gaz1 (p.15), Gaz2 (p.5)

DA4: The Duchy of Ten
Location: Kingdom of Blackmoor/Broken Lands
Location Notes: The module begins explicitly in either the Broken Lands or the Kingdom of Blackmoor, in Mystara’s past.
Time Period: Various (begins 1000 AC, but the bulk of the adventure is around 4000 BC). The module takes place three months after DA3.
Staging Suggestions: The module begins in either the “present day” of the Known World or in the time of Uther Andahar and the Kingdom of Blackmoor, 4,000 BC. Given the nature of time travel in the module, it could potentially be staged at any time.
Continuity Problems: None within the module itself, but see entry for DA1.
References: DA1, DA2, DA3, Gaz1 (p.15), Gaz2 (p.5)

HWQ Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:18 am
by Cthulhudrew
HWQ1: The Milenian Scepter
Location: Milenian Empire, Hollow World
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in the Milenian Empire, in and around the city of Corisa.
Time Period: 1,010 AC.
Staging Suggestions: The module is based on the premise that a servant of an Entropic Immortal has taken control of the empire by capitalizing on the temporary extinguishing of the Hollow World’s sun during the Week of No Magic in 1,009 AC.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: WotI (DM’s Guide)

CM Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:18 am
by Cthulhudrew
CM1: Test of the Warlords
Location: Kingdom of Norwold
Location Notes: The module is predicated on the assumption that the PCs are accepting rulership of dominions in the lands of Norwold, swearing fealty to King Ericall.
Time Period: 995 AC or later.
Staging Suggestions: Based on the description of King Ericall as “not yet 30 years old” and his birthdate as given in the Poor Wizard’s Almanacs (972 AC), CM1 should presumably take place in or around 1000 AC. However, the module could easily take place at any time after 995 AC, when Ericall is declared King of Norwold (and subsequently appoints Lernal the Swill as governor of Landfall). The suggested timeline for the module plays out over a period of two years. This and the Crown War in the back could easily be worked into the elements introduced by the Wrath of the Immortals set, either as a prelude to the wars to come during that campaign, or as a concurrent set of empirical clashes arising from the fallout of the Wrath of the Immortals.
Continuity Problems: The prologue mentions that it takes place after the “fall of the Black Eagle Barony”, and it is clearly intended to be run as a sequel to the Battlesystem adventure in the Companion Set rulebook. As such, this module could be run anytime between 1010 AC and 1012 AC- after the Baron is deposed but before Emperor Thincol of Thyatis dies. Given that the prologue is Out of Character background, and not In Character dialogue, the fall of the Black Eagle does not really impact the events of the module and can be easily ignored.
References: Companion’s Set DM’s Guide (p.61), DotE (p.7), PWA 1010 (p.138, 235)

CM2: Death’s Ride
Location: Barony of Twolakes Vale, Kingdom of Norwold.
Location Notes: The adventurers are by King Ericall sent to investigate strange happenings in Twolakes Vale, a barony noted to be located in Norwold. The barony (which covers a single 24 mile hex) can easily be placed anywhere else the campaign requires, with only minor changes needed for the background of the adventure.
Time Period: Any (see below).
Staging Suggestions: The adventure could be run any time post-992 AC if using King Ericall and Norwold as the background. Otherwise, any time period would work.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: None.

CM3: Sabre River
Location: Kingdom of Norwold.
Location Notes: The module is assumed to take place somewhere in Norwold, either in a PC’s dominion or else a dominion of the DM’s choice.
Time Period: Any.
Staging Suggestions: The module can be easily set at any time or location the DM chooses, with very little modification. The only thing that might need to be altered would be the references to the Alphatian colonial expedition that is the foundation of the curse in the module. It could either be altered to some other nationality, or the module could be placed in an area the Alphatians are known to have had contact with (such as Glantri, Ylaruam, the Isle of Dawn, Bellisaria, etc.)
Continuity Problems: None.
References: None.

CM4: Earthshaker!
Location: Kingdom of Norwold
Location Notes: The module provides the pre-generated dominion of Vyolstagrad as the location, but suggests having the adventure take place in a PC’s dominion instead (if they have one).
Time Period: Any.
Staging Suggestions: The module assumes the PCs are adventuring in Norwold, and that they have gained rulership of a dominion under King Ericall, but as no explicit connections are made in the module, it could very easily be set anywhere in the DM’s campaign world.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: None.

CM5: Mystery of the Snow Pearls
Location: Anywhere.
Location Notes: The adventure begins in the elfhome of Tarylon, which can be set pretty much anywhere.
Time Period: Any.
Staging Suggestions: The map included with the adventure covers a very small area (little more than an 8 mile hex), and uses locations that have not ever been tied to any area of Mystara. It could thus be adapted to any location desired.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: None.

CM6: Where Chaos Reigns
Location: Parallel world of Aelos
Location Notes: The events of the module take place on the parallel world of Aelos, but can begin at any place in the campaign world.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The module can easily be used in any campaign. With some work, it could even potentially be recast as taking place in the prehistory of Mystara rather than Aelos.
Continuity Problems: None.
References: None.

CM7: Tree of Life
Location: Selinar (eastern Canolbarth), Alfheim
Location Notes: The module begins explicitly in the Selinar region of Alfheim, and then takes the PCs to the Sylvan Realm, ancient home of the elves, in western Brun.
Time Period: Any time prior to 1007 AC.
Staging Suggestions: The module takes place at a time when the Alfheim elves are still in control of the Canolbarth forest, and thus must take place prior to the shadow elf invasion of 1007 AC. Gaz5 assumes that the adventure has not yet taken place in 1000 AC, but allows for the possibility that it may have. The fall of 1006 AC might be a good time to stage things, as the shadow elf magics twisting the forest could at first be (falsely) presumed to be behind the Feadiel Tree of Life dying.
Continuity Problems: The module is fairly self-contained. Successful completion of the module may lead to increased interaction between the Sylvan Realm and Alfheim, and could provide alternatives to the elves’ fates as detailed in the Poor Wizards’ Almanacs and Mystaran Almanacs.
There is an NPC druid named Cucurbita Pepo in the module who may join the PC’s quest; a druid by the same name turns up in Robrenn in 1000 AC. As both the module and article were written by the same author- Bruce Heard- and the descriptions of the two NPCs are different (CM7’s is old and bearded; Dragon 177’s is young), and the distance between the nations of Alfheim and Robrenn are so vast, it is most likely that the author simply chose to use the same name for different characters.
References: Gaz5 (p.35), Dragon #177 (p. 43).

CM9: Legacy of Blood
Location: Borderland territory of Fenhold, Darokin
Location Notes: The module is centered around the PCs inheriting the dominion of Fenhold, on the border of Darokin and Alfheim.
Time Period: Any (but see Staging Suggestions)
Staging Suggestions: This adventure can be run at any time, though if run during or after the period of the Wrath of the Immortals (1004 and later), DMs might need to incorporate additional changes to the adventure reflecting national events (Invasion of the Master’s forces in the west; shadow elf invasions in Alfheim; etc.)
Continuity Problems: The maps of Darokin from Gaz11 conflict with the location of Fenhold in this module. In particular, the map of Borderland regions on p. 11 shows a Heartland region in the hex where Fenhold is located, and the poster map places the town of Dolos similarly within the area claimed by Fenhold in the module. To run the module as written, one needs to ignore p. 11’s Borderland/Heartland map (in regards to Fenhold), and relocate Dolos by a few hexes. Relocating Fenhold itself is another option (as suggested by these map reproductions of Darokin by Thorfinn Tait.)
References: Gaz11

Commentary from old thread

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:19 am
by Cthulhudrew
Reposting this from the old v.2 boards; just recently realized it hadn't made the transition.

Here are some comments from that thread:
Marco Fossati wrote:a very impressive and useful work
Thanks. I'll try and keep it updated; thought I had worked through the CM modules at least, but I see that I haven't. Going to rectify that now.

BTW, if anyone knows why that table post is showing a huge amount of blank space before the table, I'd love to know. I can't seem to get rid of it. Hate that that single post is taking up so much room...
LoZompatore wrote:Impressive and very useful work! :D

A little contribution about some CM and M modules time placement (this work was done together with Zendrolion some time ago). Notice that:

1) M1 module and DotE describes the same love affair between king Norlan of Qeodhar and Mariella of Alphatia. In particular, the beginning of M1 is for sure set after the Landgrab in Norwold (PCs from Norwold are included in the expedition sent by Ericall) but before AC 1000 (otherwise the love affair won't appear in DotE as an estabilished background for Norlan and Mariella).
2) It is likely that the War of the Crown of CM1 module is the same war of M2 module: all the armies involved use the same statistics in both modules, moreover the events from CM1 could basically act as an earlier stage of the M2 war without having to modify any relevant detail (In particular you could play all the events described in both modules by using two groups of noble PCs from Norwold, one group going to visit the crones of Krystykk as of CM1 while the other group will fight Cogier de Mory and his minions as of M2). In my opinion there is also a good logical reason in merging the two wars: it's very unlikely that Thyatis would send an expeditionary army (actually the same expeditionary army) to Norwold twice in a few years, being repelled both times...
3) If you compare PWAI and M5 (set after M2 because of the ongoing peace treaties between Thyatis and Alphatia after the war) you'll see that pharaoh Ramenhotep XXIII will become king of Thothia (following the death of his father during the events in M5) in AC 1002.
4) Accordingly to DotE, Tredorian is kidnapped after a visit to Ericall in order to get a dominion in Norwold. So the kidnapping should happen after the Landgrab but before AC 1000 (because the event is described in Tredorian's background). Likely, the Landgrab is set before AC 1000.

So, if you accept point 2), the War of the Crown happens shortly before AC 1002, which means that CM1 could be set in AC 999-1000. The Landgrab could happen during the fall of AC 998, the M1 module could start at the beginning of the winter of AC 999 (notice that if the M1 adventure is successful, the Immortal Vanya will send the PCs back in the past - at the beginning of the module - on a parallel timeline where the M1 events will not happen).
The War of the Crown could start in AC 1001, as the whole M2 module. M5 would be set in AC 1002.

Hope you'll find those references useful! ;)
Haven't gotten to the M Modules yet (CM7 and 9 are taking a bit of extra research for references), but this is very useful. I'd known about the Ramenhotep connection (which- another point- since both his father and Aketheti are mentioned and listed as NPCs in DotE, means that M5 must take place between 1000 AC and 1002 AC, narrowing it down even further).

I hadn't noticed a couple of those other points, though, in particular your notes that the War of the Crown and the CM1 war are likely the same war. That is actually a very useful point, in that it cuts down on having two major wars in a relatively short period of time (particularly in light of the WotI war between the Empires). I might not have caught the Mariella/Norlan romance, either.

The M modules are probably the most important ones in need of placement, followed shortly by several of the CM modules. It seems only reasonable, since they are the ones with the biggest spans in terms of nations/people affected by the events.

One thing I like is how a lot of them can very much be fit into the backdrop of increasing international conflict that will eventually erupt into the Wrath of the Immortals. There are several minor details, of course, that don't mesh in all places, that hopefully this project helps bring to light in some ways.

I will probably try and do the Dungeon Adventures when all this is done, and might even attempt to work in the Adventure suggestions from the Gazetteers. One step at a time, though.

Thanks for the help, LoZompatore!

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:38 pm
by maddog
This should be considered for a sticky.
--Ray.

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 8:01 pm
by Gawain_VIII
maddog wrote:This should be considered for a sticky.
--Ray.
Good call. Done!

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Sun Jan 17, 2010 2:55 am
by Cthulhudrew
D'OH! Don't know why I didn't think of that myself! :lol:

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:49 am
by Cthulhudrew
Updated with some minor edits and added CM6: Where Chaos Reigns entry.

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:22 pm
by cab
Good work!

Re: B Series Modules

Posted: Sat Jan 23, 2010 9:23 am
by paleologos
Fantastic thread and sticky - one of my all-time favorite lists compiled about Mystara!

Some comments:
Cthulhudrew wrote:B1: In Search of Adventure
Location: Cruth Mountains of Karameikos.
Location Notes: The Expert Set map of the Known World depicts the module as taking place in the Cruth Mountains of Karameikos, northeast of Luln. A brief mention in B1-9 seems to support this theory.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The history given for Zelligar and Rogahn might fit well in either the Halav era of Karameikos (c. 1000 BC) or in the subsequent Dark Ages of the realm.
Continuity Problems: The module itself suggests placing it in the Barony of Ratik, Duchy of Tenh, or Theocracy of the Pale, in the world of Greyhawk.
See Also: B1-9
References: 1983 Expert Set, Gaz1, B1-9 (p. 23)
The Players' Background Sheet (p. 31) states that "some years ago, perhaps in the decade before you were born, Rogahn and Zelligar apparently decided upon a joint foray into the lands of the hated barbarians" so in terms of staging, 960-970 AC would seem to be more in keeping with the info in the module.

Adaptions to Mystara typically involve changing the barbarian invasion into a beastman or similar humanoid invasion, but I think this is unnecessary. The Heldann fit the bill nicely, and although they are quite far north, a great invasion or massive migration a generation previously might have brought them quite far south. Perhaps after crossing the Ethengar plains and spreading across the part of Darokin around Alfheim, a number of tribes attempted to cross the Cruth mountains into Karameikos (expansion further west having been halted by a marshalling of the forces of Darokin).

There is a historical precedent for this kind of barbarian tide sweeping across civilized lands. The Heldann apparently worship a chaotic barbarian god (Gylgarid, in X13 Crown of Ancient Glory) who might have served as a motivating force or source of eldritch power, and whose cult Rogahn and Zelligar might have travelled north to destroy.
Cthulhudrew wrote:B2: The Keep on the Borderlands
Location: Castellan Keep, Altan Tepes Mountains, Karameikos.
Location Notes: Gaz1, the Expert Set map, and B1-9 suggest using Castellan Keep as the titular keep, but recommends removing the town within.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The module is fairly generic, and can easily be inserted into any campaign, in just about any realm.
Continuity Problems: The map of the area surrounding the keep within the module does not seem to quite conform to the expected terrain of the Altan Tepes around Castellan.
See Also: B1-9, Return to the Keep on the Borderlands
References: 1983 Expert Set, Gaz1 (p.40), B1-9 (p.35)
The continuity problems regarding terrain can be nicely solved by moving Castellan Keep to the Highreach River in the valley leading across the southern spur of the mountains into Thyatis, as has been mentioned by poster Shadow Shack on Dragonsfoot. (This also fits better with the information in the module that the Keep is on the eastern frontier, not the northeastern corner, of civilization). The road on the players map in B2 can then lead into northern Thyatis, and the purpose of the Keep as protection of the pass is more feasible than a remote bastion against frost giants (!)
Cthulhudrew wrote:B3: Palace of the Silver Princess
Location: Valley of Haven, eastern Karameikos.
Location Notes: The Expert Set map, Gaz1, and B1-9 depict the module as taking place in the eastern part of Karameikos.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: This is a fairly generic module. Some minor changes may need to be made depending on where it is placed, however (see below).
Continuity Problems: The original orange cover module (available at Wizards of the Coast as a free download) places the module atop the plateau to the west of Glantri, and also provides some detailed campaign notes for the region (including other towns).
See Also: B1-9 (p.46), Gaz1 (p.40)
References: 1983 Expert Set, Gaz1, B1-9, B3 (orange cover)
My suggestion would be to leave the Valley of Haven on the Adri Varma plateau, even if using the green version. The location in Karameikos has never been favoured by later publications (the Valley is missing on the map in B10) and Aaron Alston in GAZ1 states that Haven is a "lost valley" only findable with consent of the immortals. B1-9 involves a magical transportation of the PCs to Haven, which can just as easily be northwest of Glantri.
Cthulhudrew wrote:B5: Horror on the Hill
Location: Guido’s Fort, upriver from the Barony of Kelvin, Karameikos.
Location Notes: The suggested location is from module B1-9.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: Guido’s Fort and the Hill of the Hobgoblin King can be placed easily anywhere.
Continuity Problems: Guido’s Fort is located along the river Shrill in the module, but there is no Shrill river noted on the Karameikos maps. Shrill may be a tributary of the Hillfollow (Shutturgal) River, or a local name.
References: B1-9 (p.61)
The rivers in Karameikos were left unnamed in the original Expert Sets, which is what Douglas Niles would have been working from back in 1982/3. His description of the "mile-wide" river Shrill could easily be referring to the river flowing through Blight Swamp in western Karameikos (the convergence of the Cruth, Magos, Gustos, and Achelos rivers), which I think has remained unnamed.

The module states that areas of swamp surround The Hill for several miles to the west and to the south. Guido's Fort could therefore be located on the eastern bank of this river, just outside of the Black Eagle Barony and several miles northwest of Luln. The downtrodden feel of western Karameikos also fits perfectly with the mood at the Fort (where characters are likely to pick up an infestation of fleas!).

Incidentally, there is a chance that Niles may have been inspired by one of Robert E. Howard's most famous Conan stories "Beyond the Black River". Here's a quote from the story:
Robert E. Howard wrote: Fort Tuscelan stood on the eastern bank of Black River, the tides of which washed the foot of the stockade. The latter was of logs, as were all the buildings within, including the donjon (to dignify it by that appellation), in which were the governor's quarters, overlooking the stockade and the sullen river. Beyond that river lay a huge forest, which approached jungle-like density along the spongy shores. Men paced the runways along the log parapet day and night, watching that dense green wall. Seldom a menacing figure appeared, but the sentries knew that they too were watched, fiercely, hungrily, with the mercilessness of ancient hate. The forest beyond the river might seem desolate and vacant of life to the ignorant eye, but life teemed there, not alone of bird and beast and reptile, but also of men, the fiercest of all the hunting beasts.

There, at the fort, civilization ended. Fort Tuscelan was the last outpost of a civilized world; it represented the westernmost thrust of the dominant Hyborian races. Beyond the river the primitive still reigned in shadowy forests, brush-thatched huts where hung the grinning skulls of men, and mud-walled enclosures where fires flickered and drums rumbled, and spears were whetted in the hands of dark, silent men with tangled black hair and the eyes of serpents. Those eyes often glared through bushes at the fort across the river.
Next up:
Cthulhudrew wrote:B7: Rahasia
Location: Forest near Selenica, off the Duke’s Road, Darokin.
Location Notes: This is the suggested location from module B1-9. The Arabian style influences present in the module would make placement near to a desert land (such as Ylaruam) a likely setting.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: There are some expanded descriptions of the history and culture of the Siswa elves, the Black Opal Eye, and more on the Vaults of Pandius.
Continuity Problems: None, with the possible exception of fitting in the Arabian-elvish culture close to the more traditional elvish cultures of nearby Alfheim.
References: B1-9 (p.5, 77)
The influences in Rahasia are actually Indonesian, rather than Arabian (and inpired by Tracey Hickman's time as a missionary in Indonesia prior to his return to the U.S. and the writing of the module) so the proximity to Ylaruam is actually not particularly relevant.

I've toyed with the idea of placing the module on one of the islands in the Thanegioth archipelago, (based on the Indonesian feel) but the flora and fauna would not be consistent with that.

A nice solution would be to place Rahasia in southeastern Karameikos, just southeast of the Lake of Lost Dreams, and have the elves stand in for the Vyalia elves (if the latter are not too fully fleshed out in one's campaign). The Vyalia are described as fair skinned with blue eyes in B10, which fits with descriptions and illustrations of the elves in B7. Removing B7 from the forest near Selenica would also help avoid a culture clash with the Elves of Alfheim.

The topography as presented in the module also fits perfectly in southeastern Karameikos (there are mountains to the north, as described in the module) and the elves could be separated from the goblins of Dymrak by the river flowing from the Lake of Lost Dreams (each side gaurding their own bank against incursions from the other). Their distance from the rest of Karameikos could explain the cultural differences, or the elves might have immigrated there from somewhere far away (like the Thanegioth archipelago across the Sea of Dread!)

The trail or path to Grey Mountain and the Hantu Valley could therefore originate from Rugalov Keep (the adventure starts with the adventurers traveling north on a path through an elven forest, towards mountainous terrain further north).

(edit: I was reminiscing about this module today, and in retrospect think that the Indonesian flavor is too much for Karameikos. Rather, north of Akesoli, on the river northwest of Lake Amsorak (one of the suggested locations for B8) might really work well. The town of Akesoli has an exotic, frontier feel to it (lots of unexplored territory to the west and northwest). The Indian culture of the Sind meshes better with Indonesian elves than the Byzantine and Slavic flavour of Karameikos. The NPCs in B7 with the Indonesian names are just the kind of folk you might rub shoulders with in the marketplaces of Akesoli. Only thing missing is a hook to go north - perhaps the adventurers are delivering a message, or trying to establish ties for a merchant in town?)
Cthulhudrew wrote:B8: Journey to the Rock
Location: Several hours north of Threshold, Karameikos.
Location Notes: B1-9 suggests placing the adventure in the Threshold region. The module itself suggests placing it northwest of Threshold, in the Cruth Mountains northwest of Wereskalot (Five Shires), or in the mountains and hills north of Lake Amsorak (Darokin).
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: Given the history and geography of the module, it is difficult to easily drop into any location in Mystara. The suggested locations do not fit terribly well. Placing it somewhere near the Savage Coast or Sind might fit better.
Continuity Problems: The terrain around the Manor and Hall of the Rock do not fit in well with the suggested locations. A fan map fitting the module to the northeast of Threshold is available on the Mystara Message Boards.
References: B1-9 (p.14)
Of the three suggested locations in the module, the first one mentioned (on the river northwest of Wereskalot) fits the best. (Incidentally, the module writer seemed to think that this was in Karameikos, which leads one to suspect that he was referring to the map of the Grand Duchy in the Cook/Marsh Expert rulebook, which is labeled as the Grand Duchy of Karameikos even though the eastern third of the map is in the Five Shires).

North of Lake Amsorak is also a reasonable location (with the PCs starting out from Akesoli, perhaps) but on the river northwest of Threshold is a bad idea (conflicts with maps in B10).
Cthulhudrew wrote:B9: Castle Caldwell and Beyond
Location:
  • A) The Clearing of Castle Caldwell and B) Dungeons of Terror: Antilles Castle, five miles west of Threshold, Karameikos
    C) The Great Escape: Black Eagle Barony, Karameikos
    D) Elwyn's Sanctuary: Near Threshold, Karameikos
    E) The Abduction of Princess Sylvia: No suggestion
Location Notes: B1-9 provides the suggestions for the locations of these mini-modules.
Time Period: If using the suggested locations from B1-9, then A) and B) must take place between 1000 and 1011 AC, as Clifton Caldwell dies in 1011 AC. C) must take place between 970 AC and 1010 AC, as the Black Eagle is deposed in 1010 AC.
Staging Suggestions: The mini-adventures can easily be dropped into just about any setting with no changes necessary. The exception would be E), due to it being situated in a kingdom (changes to names and/or titles might be necessary to utilize this adventure). Note that in the original module, some names have been changed in D), and the introduction featuring warring kingdoms from C) doesn’t quite match the suggested location of Karameikos.
Continuity Problems: See above.
References: B1-9 (p.5, 23, 30), PWA1012 (p.112)
When this module was written, the writer might have been thinking of the Northern Reaches (which were each described to be composed of several petty "kingdoms" in the blurb in X1). The module art is also vaguely Viking in feel (what with horned helms, etc).

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:16 pm
by copperblade
Can we include your information on the Mystara Wiki?

Re: B Series Modules

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:07 am
by RobJN
paleologos wrote:
Cthulhudrew wrote:B8: Journey to the Rock
Of the three suggested locations in the module, the first one mentioned (on the river northwest of Wereskalot) fits the best. (Incidentally, the module writer seemed to think that this was in Karameikos, which leads one to suspect that he was referring to the map of the Grand Duchy in the Cook/Marsh Expert rulebook, which is labeled as the Grand Duchy of Karameikos even though the eastern third of the map is in the Five Shires).
Well, if the Black Eagle had his way..... ;)

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 3:32 am
by Cthulhudrew
copperblade wrote:Can we include your information on the Mystara Wiki?
Absolutely. I need to get back and finish this up with the M and IM series, and possibly move on to the Dungeon Magazine adventures afterwards.

Re: Mystara Modules and Placement

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:32 am
by scythe
What happened to CM9: Legacy of Blood? :shock:

Also, IM3: The Best of Intentions, in case it wasn't just an accident the name got left out.

Re: B Series Modules

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 11:36 am
by paleologos
RobJN wrote:
paleologos wrote:
Cthulhudrew wrote:B8: Journey to the Rock
Of the three suggested locations in the module, the first one mentioned (on the river northwest of Wereskalot) fits the best. (Incidentally, the module writer seemed to think that this was in Karameikos, which leads one to suspect that he was referring to the map of the Grand Duchy in the Cook/Marsh Expert rulebook, which is labeled as the Grand Duchy of Karameikos even though the eastern third of the map is in the Five Shires).
Well, if the Black Eagle had his way..... ;)
True!

(Although sorry - I meant to say that the western third of the map is in the Five Shires (the eastern third of the Five Shires) but you obviously knew what I meant).

Incidentally, I've been scrutinizing the maps for the Five Shires - both new and old (there are some differences in the mountain terrain northwest of Wereskalot) - and can find no good way to squeeze the terrain for B8 into it. Geographically, north of Lake Amsorak might actually work better.

However, in the process, I've concluded that the best place for B8 is "off the map" to the north, perhaps in the general proximity of the Kingdom of Ghyr from XL-1...which would explain why there's no mention of ancient Tuma in the annals of the nations of southern Brun.

Re: B Series Modules

Posted: Mon Jun 07, 2010 8:58 am
by PeripheralBlue
Cthulhudrew wrote:B1: B10: Night's Dark Terror
Location: Various locations in Karameikos
Location Notes: The module is set explicitly in Karameikos, taking the PCs on a tour throughout the country.
Time Period: Any
Staging Suggestions: The module was designed specifically for Karameikos and expanded upon the history of that nation. It would require extensive reworking to place it anywhere else.
Continuity Problems: Some differences between the calendar presented in the module and the calendars of the Gazetteers.
References: N/A
Just wanted to get some clarification with regards to the differences between the calendars; sources and what have you. Also, do you guys think that one'd be better served by placing this module closer to 1000AC? I mean, the Duchy certainly seems to take on a more civilized feel as time goes on, no? Especially when we're lookin' at Karameikos, post WotI. At least that's the impression I've gotten from K:KoA... for whatever that's worth.