Adventures in the Greenrun! is finally beginning to take real shape. For the time being, the introductory document (A00) is complete and published, and includes an entire page of brand-new background content that sets the stage for adventures across the wide-world of Glacia. As the campaign grows, so too will this document, which acts as a guide for game masters, managing the plot, providing advice on running and customizing adventures, and offering continued insights into the goals of primary antagonists.
Excerpt from A00:
The continent of Glacia has a long and storied history, though much of it is hidden from its current inhabitants. Nevertheless, past events play an immensely important role in the land that it is today, and the land that it is to become. Much of what is explained here can be revealed to characters as the campaign unfolds.
A Brief History of Glacia
For much of its existence, Glacia enjoyed a warm, tropical climate. Fertile volcanic soil and endless summers produced a lush, thriving land of plenty, and all manner of life roamed its verdant expanse.
In those days, many sentient, primitive races dwelt alongside one another in relative peace. The wisest among them were the Blackwater Lizardfolk, who possessed a preternatural aptitude for magic use. As the centuries passed, their skill grew, and they soon became wizards and warlocks of astounding and terrible power.
Their advancements did not go unnoticed, however, and a great war erupted between the Blackwaters and the races of Glacia, who feared and hated the shadowy forces of the lizardfolk’s now malignant magic. Though mighty, the Blackwaters were severely outnumbered, and suffered heavy casualties in the ensuing bloodshed.
All the same, they refused to relent, and sought to defeat their enemies by use of a dark weapon of titanic proportions – the likes of which the world has not seen since. The resultant explosion eradicated more than 90% of life on the continent, leaving a massive, smoldering crater in its wake. The green and rich landscape was destroyed, altered beyond recognition: jagged mountains split forests, yawning crevasses swallowed rivers, and blackness filled the sky.
Soon after, the land of endless summer felt something new in the air: the biting cold of winter. The remainder of life shivered and trembled in its icy grip, and the Blackwaters fled the surface, falling into a deep hibernation beneath the death-scoured, wind-driven wastes of their once flourishing Eden.
Some millenia later, intrepid southron explorers would make landfall on the now frost-bound country, and the dull thumping of their boots on the frozen ground, and soon after, their pickaxes in the prosperous earth, would wake the Blackwaters from their centuries of restless, dreamless slumber. They were roused with a vengeance in their cold hearts: reprisal for their paradise lost, their powers dissipated, and their dim eons beneath the earth.
These machinations drive the main story arc of Adventures in the Greenrun, and in one way or another, all things flow from them.
Additionally, as work continues on A03: Lonesome Western States, what was originally a relatively short, point-to-point journey to the Greenrun has evolved into an open-ended, sandbox-style boondoggle of sorts. This prototype map (created using the wonderful Azgaar’s Fantasy Map Generator) gives a sense of scale to the immensity of the Western States, and depicts the majority of existing settlements, geographical features, and the Eastern March – a series of roads and trails which stretch more than 1,000 miles across the sparse landscape, from the Far West to the Greenrun.
As a result, A03 will work much like an old-school hex crawl, with a wide variety of random encounters, adventure hooks, and opportunities for free exploration, as well as a minimum of ten cavern, dungeon, and town maps. However, the characters shouldn’t lose sight of their goal to track down the Wounding Hand as they flee across the March, bound for the Greenrun. The further ahead the cultists get, the more likely they will be to wreak chaos and destruction, recover powerful artifacts, and set deadly traps for their pursuers.
Lastly, my game group (consisting of my wonderful wife and three stouthearted sons) has committed to a regular, weekly tabletop session, which I expect to help accelerate adventure development. So, as always, stay tuned, share your thoughts, and if you’re out there playing along, I salute you!