Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

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Gravesguardian
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Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Gravesguardian » Tue May 15, 2018 7:00 pm

Wondering if anyone knows of a suitable map to use w/ this:

The mysterious keep w/ it's waterwheel high atop the cliffs surrounding the Gloomfens is a relic from ancient Blackmoor. Build under the orders of King Uther Andahar, the keep houses a portal, in a secret room in the dungeon, that connects to ancient Blackmoor. W/ this portal, small groups of Blackmoorians (usually numbering 15-20) are secretly slipped in the Rift & then make their way into the lands beyond the Rift. In this way, Uther has been slowly saving remnants of Blackmoor. Those who come thru, from the past, tend to head for major cities where it's easier to blend in. Some few have, however, built small villages far off the beaten path. Only the Lord/Lady of the Keep can control the portal & they are always someone of Uther's blood. (On those occassions when an early death results before an heir is named, a descendant of The Fletch becomes the default leader of the CBK & can open the portal; but, only to Blackmoor at a time when Uther still lived so he can choose the heir himself.) Those rare few Riftians that actually reach the keep are politely given the option of going thru to Blackmoor, or having their memories erased & being deposited somewhere outside the Rift. (referred to as the Comeback Keep & built sometime after humans find their way into Thunder Rift; but, before Duke Hector Barrik's Keep is relocated to the Hollow World during the Goblin Wars. During the years spanning the Goblin Wars (as well as the years spanning the Sword vs. Wand conflict), the CBK's portal cannot be activated. Due to its location, the CBK avoids the affects of the Goblin Wars & the Sword vs. Wand conflict much later.)
Uther, & by default Blackmoor, has no designs on the Rift; it is simply a means to get groups of their people into the other lands & thereby save fragments of Blackmoor. All of the small Blackmoorian villages that have sprung up, house small libraries (no more than 50-100 tomes) of Blackmoorian lore. Almost all of these tomes are related to "normal" village survival: blacksmithing, farming, herbalism, woodland lore etc. Some few tomes, perhaps 5-10, deal w/ subjects such as: alchemy, history: Blackmoor, magic (various topics), & spellcasting (no more than 1 or 2 tomes). All Blackmoorian subjects going thru the portal are forbidden, under penalty of death, from carrying technology from the past w/ them into the future. Likewise, they are forbidden from trying to recreate ancient tech in their new times.

My mapmaker lacks a symbol for waterwheels.
Last edited by Gravesguardian on Wed May 16, 2018 12:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Gravesguardian
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Re: Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Gravesguardian » Tue May 15, 2018 7:01 pm

What I would like to do w/ the above post is to expand it on the off chance that a party of adventurers ever reaches it. My original purpose for the CBK was:
#1. Save fragments of Blackmoor by relocating small groups into the Rift & beyond.
#2. Give PC's another way out of the Rift & into areas of the Known World, besides Karameikos.
#3. Give Dm's a way to shift PC's between Settings. (The portal to Blackmoor only opens when the current leader of the Keep opens it, otherwise noone knows where the portal leads to.)
#4. Known only to the current leader of the Keep, is the fact that hidden away beneath the Keep is a chamber housing Uther, The Fetch & all of Uther's Companions; all sleeping peacefully in stasis 'til such a times as they might once again be needed to lead the reborn Blackmoor.

Those are just the 4 "solid" purposes I had for it.

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Re: Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Sturm » Wed May 16, 2018 10:58 am

Ah I've already replied about this here: viewtopic.php?f=45&t=19548&p=213238#p213238
It seems you duplicated the posts by accident? Anyway we can continue the discussion here.
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Re: Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Gravesguardian » Wed May 16, 2018 3:44 pm

Sturm wrote:
Wed May 16, 2018 10:58 am
Ah I've already replied about this here: viewtopic.php?f=45&t=19548&p=213238#p213238
It seems you duplicated the posts by accident? Anyway we can continue the discussion here.
I reposted them here to avoid cluttering up the other topic. Thru-out the Blackmoor adventures it's mentioned that the PC's claim to be from the future and that Blackmoor no longer exists. I also believe it states in the later adventures that due to these claims, Uther (more likely The Fetch) started slipping operatives into this future time including merchant-types. (I'll have to scan thru all 4 adventures for actual quotes.)

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Re: Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Sturm » Wed May 16, 2018 8:09 pm

Well yes it makes sense even if it was never mentioned again in later products. During the DA series Blackmoor was supposed to be in the ancient Broken Lands, then it was retconned in Skothar, so it fits Blackmoor operatives ends up in TR.
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Re: Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Gravesguardian » Wed May 16, 2018 8:14 pm

Sturm wrote:
Wed May 16, 2018 8:09 pm
Well yes it makes sense even if it was never mentioned again in later products. During the DA series Blackmoor was supposed to be in the ancient Broken Lands, then it was retconned in Skothar, so it fits Blackmoor operatives ends up in TR.
Yeah, in atleast one of the later modules in that series, I "believe" it mentions The Fletch having operatives in Darokin or Glantri, whichever was closest to the CBI while it sat in the Broken Lands. To my way of looking at things, The Fletch would've used any opertunity(sp?) to get operatives into as many lands as possible. Since the portal in the CBI doesn't neccessarily always open to the same twice at all times, its possible w/ the use of the amulets to redirect the destination & slip a few folks into whatever land they show up in.

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Re: Mysterious Keep w/ Waterwheel in Thunder Rift

Post by Gravesguardian » Tue Jun 11, 2019 11:12 pm

Time to fix a little oversight (mostly on my own behalf). Being a little on the bored side today and doing some minor research, I discovered something about the waterwheel keep that seems to have escaped attention; my own included.

Thunder Rift Setting
--------------------
Travel in Thunder Rift
The Gloomfens (pg. 7 5th paragraph)
A thin tributary to the mighty Drake River flows out of the Gloomfens, lazily trickling its way through the polluted fens until it collects into a wide, knee-deep basin and runs to its delta in the grasslands. Its source is a large pond at the base of the western canyon wall, out of which a cascade of water tumbles. Above lies a strange keep with a waterwheel turning and creaking at its side. The stronghold is a mystery, for no living person will go there--or, if they have, they will not divulge its secrets.

Rumors of Thunder Rift:
#8. The Haunted Tower (pg. 31)
Stories of the rampages of undead creatures of the Gloomfens never fail to frighten the settlers of Thunder Rift. The stories of the fens, themselves, are even more fearsome to these normally stolid peasants. The subject that frightens them most, however, is that of what lies in the very back of the fens.
Occasionally, through the swirls of the constant and putrid fog, a tower of strange design is visible, high in the wall of the canyon. The waterwheel next to it creaks even over the noise of falling water, and eerie lights glow about its spires on moonless nights.
Some claim, in hushed tones, that the spirit of Sir Jameson the Defender (see page 13) has taken residence here, plotting revenge against those responsible for his demise; never mind that they all must be long dead by now. On the other hand, isn't the same thing said of Wizardspire? The local ghost stories declare that the two enemies are at still each other's throats, even in death.
The Haunted Tower adventure pack, on sale in October of 1992, provides the answer to these rumors.

Somehow, in all my times reading the setting book, I never noticed that the mysterious waterwheel keep and the haunted tower were, in fact, one and the same.

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