Monday, February 15, 2010

Hammersong's Legacy: Rynoc's Reach, An Overview...

Good Afternoon, All:

What follows is a brief write-up of Rynoc's Reach, the "home base" settlement that I'm developing for the Hammersong's Legacy Campaign Setting. Given that it is designed to be a starting point for a campaign in this setting, the section on Rynoc's Reach will be a bit more detailed than the average village in the setting. I'm not looking at doing the whole Hommlet treatment from TSR's T1 module, as I think that's too much detail. Instead, I'm figuring on a few pages to detail some areas and some NPCs, paint some rumors, and perhaps create a few adventure scenarios to help kick off some exploration of the setting. However, it all starts with some basic information on the village itself.

Rynoc's Reach (Duar Protectorate)
Rynoc's Reach is a small village in the Black Hills on the southwestern border of the Duar Protectorate. Originally founded in the later years of the War of All Gods as the first in a series of strongholds against the incursion of twisted abominations forged by the Drakon Empire and the Elder Gods themselves, in recent decades the village has settled into a subdued and almost sleepy existence. Its sole claim to fame currently is its proximity to the ruins of the Vaults of Celebrus, where an archmage once trapped a number of powerful beasts in the latter years of the War of All Gods.
Population: 800. The population of Rynoc's Reach is predominately Duar, although a significant minority of the population are Humans, Eldeblooded and Wyrmblooded.
Government: Feudal Lordship. The village of Rynoc's Reach is considered the fief of Baron Ulric Bloodstone, who received the land for services rendered to the Most Righteous Sovereign, King Ollum Hammersong. Baron Bloodstone named the settlement he founded for his brother Sir Rynoc, a pikesman that fell in battle defending the king.
Defense: The baronial keep, Greymeadow Point, looks over the wooden walls of Rynoc's Reach, providing a safe haven in times of war and monstrous assault. In addition, Baron Bloodstone can field eighty well-trained swordsman without tapping into the local militia, which numbers over one hundred fifty men.
Commerce: Rynoc's Reach is known for its timber production and local mining efforts. Much of the agricultural needs of Rynoc's Reach are met by outlying farms, despite the dangers of carving a homestead out of the surrounding wilderness.
Organizations: While no organizations are based out of the village of Rynoc's Reach, the Mage-Librarians of Lorak maintain a small tower beyond the walls of the village. Given the rather high number of adventurers that come through the area seeking the treasures of the Vaults of Celebrus, the Circle of Mithril maintains a feast hall and training grounds for their members.

The population of Rynoc's Reach is primarily Duar (Dwarven) because the setting assumes that dwarves are the dominant race of the region. I chose humans, the eldeblooded (half-elves), and the wyrmblooded (dragon-folk/lizardfolk) as the three secondary races because of their relative percentages of appearing based on my random encounter charts. As humans tend to be the race most frequently selected by gamers in my campaigns, this gives me a strong foundation for using the village as the home base for a majority of the common character types I tend to notice.

The Eldeblooded allows me the opportunity to introduce the fact that the Elde (elves) are a dying race. I think I'll have a single Elde in the township, perhaps as a curator for the tower belonging to the Mage-Librarians of Lorak, for additional roleplay opportunities. In the notes for that character, I will mention that he gives Eldeblooded preferential treatment, because they are his race's only hope of carrying on the legacy of the Elde.

Wow, I just had another thought here: one of the secondary story arcs for the setting could be a group of Elde who are seeking a way to remove the curse that renders them infertile. The curator could be part of that organization, and may even have some adventures to hand out to the players if they are interested in seeking such.

The presence of the Wyrmblooded also allow me the chance to tie in to the story arc surrounding the next Great Expedition southward into the Madlands and beyond, as the Wyrmblooded seek to regain the city of Wyrmanthis which was once their home.

As I develop Rynoc's Reach further, I will work in elements for the other major story lines of the setting, to give players a "jumping off" point for exploring the setting. For example, Baron Ulric Bloodstone is perfect for introducing elements associated with tracking down the lost heir of the Duar Protectorate. Having served with King Hammersong before his death, the baron could very well be a strong loyalist interested in preserving Hammersong's Legacy by finding the wayward heir.

Writing this blog entry has definitely sparked a few ideas. I hope you enjoy this, and I look forward to any thoughts, questions or concerns that you might pose via your comments to this post.

With Regards,

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