Quintessential Hollow World themes for a One-Shot High Level Adventure

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Gabriel Jansen
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Quintessential Hollow World themes for a One-Shot High Level Adventure

Post by Gabriel Jansen » Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:24 pm

Hi Everyone!

I need advice for my next campaign adventures. I plan to make my players travel through different campaign settings of D&D, as they search for the pieces of the rod of the seven parts, to prevent the end of the multiverse.

My players have passed through Greyhawk, Dark Sun, Dragonlance and Forgotten Realms settings, and I have the spelljamer adventure ready to go, but I intend to also take them through the worlds of Birthright, Mystara and Eberron ( and I know very little about the last 3 settings).

In Mystara, I plan to make them search for the item in the surface world, only to discover it lies in the Hollow World. So, I need ideas to make memorable and distinct adventures and encounters in the Hollow World.

I don't know those settings well, so I need help to understand what makes these worlds unique? What characters, events, locations, metaplots, and source material are quintessential to the setting, and would help me make a one-shot "end of the world" adventure in the Hollow World campaign setting?

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Khedrac
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Re: Quintessential Hollow World themes for a One-Shot High Level Adventure

Post by Khedrac » Sat Oct 12, 2019 8:32 pm

Possibly have they try to help a settlement who could easily overgome whatever is threatening them - except for the Spell of Preservation (virtually everyone will not abandon their source culture regardless of potential gains).

You can also make use of the continual (red) daylight (except when floating islands pass by) - it could totaly mess up characters who prepare spells at a certain time of day, it wil also really confuse the internal clocks of anyone from "normal" regions.

Also, remember that the Hollow World is blocked to planar travel - no teleportation, portable holes etc.

Probably the main thing for the Hollow World is that most of the cultures are those that were lost on the outside world. For characters not from Mystara this needs some set-up - perhaps have them spend a fair amount of time in the outer world investigating the ruins of a lost culture (e.g. Nithian) while they look for their artifact. Eventually they learn of the Hollow World and they go there - and find the culture that they know is dead is actually alive and kicking (and not everything they thought they knew may be correct).
"If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it might just be a crow".

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Re: Quintessential Hollow World themes for a One-Shot High Level Adventure

Post by NPCDave » Mon Oct 14, 2019 12:30 am

I don't know those settings well, so I need help to understand what makes these worlds unique? What characters, events, locations, metaplots, and source material are quintessential to the setting, and would help me make a one-shot "end of the world" adventure in the Hollow World campaign setting?

This is a very good question and an ambitious undertaking. The Hollow World box set covered an entire inner planet's worth of nations, however, so there is no one central theme. The Blood Brethren trilogy would be the metaplot that is quintessential to the setting, so you could perhaps change that adventure trilogy to recover one section of the rod. Otherwise, you could pick one or two nations of the Hollow World for your rod section recovery adventure. There is also the Lighthouse, which is only sketched out as in the box set and a likely place where the rod section might end up. The Lighthouse is basically a repository of knowledge where different people coalesce to maintain a history of the world.

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Big Mac
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Re: Quintessential Hollow World themes for a One-Shot High Level Adventure

Post by Big Mac » Mon Oct 14, 2019 8:15 am

Gabriel Jansen wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:24 pm
I don't know those settings well, so I need help to understand what makes these worlds unique? What characters, events, locations, metaplots, and source material are quintessential to the setting, and would help me make a one-shot "end of the world" adventure in the Hollow World campaign setting?
My Hollow World-fu is weak, so you will get much better advice elsewhere, but two of the unique things about the Hollow World are:
  • It is a "hollow earth" based setting. The horizon goes upwards, not downwards. The sun is in the middle of the world.

    You need to read up on this, as it would look wrong to your players. They might not be able to tell why immediately, but they should figure it out fairly quickly. And it should be a bit mind-blowing, if they have only visited conventional planets.
  • The Immortals (Mystara has Immortals instead of gods - you need to read up on that too) seem to use the Hollow World as some sort of archive, to store cultures that would otherwise be lost.

    There is a Spell of Preservation protecting the Holllow World, so anything you want to do plotwise, has to comply with that somehow.
Alternatively, if you want a Mystara-threatening plot that might destroy the world, you could perhaps have the people with the bits of the Rod of Seven Parts threaten to destroy the Spell of Preservation, so that they can get past it and recover one of the bits.

This could potentially see entire nations in the Hollow World get teleported back onto the outer surface of the Known World...or it could cause non-threatened nations (or at least towns or cities) to get misidentified and suddenly vanish (sucked inside the Hollow World).

A plot where random parts of thhe Hollow World and Known World would kind of screw things up, so wouldn't be a good idea for a long-term campaign, but if you are doing a one shot you could go crazy.

If you know anything about the 4th Edition Forgotten Realms and bits of Returned Abeir coming to displace bits of Toril, you know how to play this out. But don't make it identical to the Spellplague, or your players will think that Mystara is Forgotten Realms with a hollow earth effect. ;-)
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
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