Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Swords & Wizardry Appreciation Day - Part I - The Wastelands of Zin.

The Wastelands of Zin Player Map
So, what do you need to start your new Swords & Wizardry campaign? How about a world?

The Wastelands of Zin are a sandbox scenario that I ran at Owlcon, a local gaming convention in Houston, Texas. Essentially, the players are given the map above, and a goal, and are then invited to experience sandbox style play for the four hours of the round. For the next several days, I will be posting the material I prepared for the round, as well as additional material that will allow you to use this material as the basis for your own campaign. I also have an super-secret ulterior motive for providing this material, which I will discuss after I have posted all the stuff for the round.

Let's start with a glossary I put together for the Wastelands. it's really meant for the GM, but there is nothing in the glossary itself that provides spoilers. See you next post, sometime later tonight!

The Wastelands of Zin – A Glossary

Aldonai CoDominium – The former empire that stretched across the Eiossan Continent. Today, only the twelve or so Dukes of the North lay claim to be the inheritors of CoDominium culture.

Invictus – The field leader of a Free Company.

Adventuring Company – A somewhat satirical name for a Mercenary Company, especially subsets of the full company detached for special duties, such as Darklander suppression, ruin looting, etc.

Free Company – A small military company that takes contracts from the dozen or so Dukes of the North to conduct military operations. They often include non-military specialists that act as an Adventuring Company.

Darklanders – Inhabitants of the Wastelands of Zin, and the Dust Plains to the east. They observe no common codes or rules of conduct, indiscriminately slaughtering all they come across. They are divided into several sub-races.

Solus – God of the Sun and Illumination of the Dodekatheon.

The Church – Formally, The Restored True Faith of the CoDominium, the Church organizes and controls all expressions of faith within the territory of the Dukes of the North. While the church technically worships the Dodekatheon, it is actually more of a monotheistic religion with its roots in a polytheistic practice.

Sevren – The city of Magisters, which by ancient compact is the only institution allowed to teach magic by the Church.

Magister – A master of arts of Theurgy, or “acting on the Gods”.  A Magic User.

Dukes of the North – Twelve nobles houses that rule the duchies of the northeast of the continent, last remnant of the Aldonai CoDominium. They constantly engage in small scale intrigue and battles, relying on feudal forces and the Free Companies.

Wastelands of Zin – An area of devastation that underwent a vast disaster some 200 years earlier. There are ruins of ancient cities in the wastes, which are mostly inhabited by The Dead and Darklanders.

Freeholds – Independent small holdings on the borders of the Wastelands of Zin. The Borderlanders stave off Darklander incursions (and worse) from the wastes, sometimes with the help of the Dukes of the North, but most often alone.

Consagh – An Ancient race, found only in the city of Lareth in the Wastelands.

Dwerrow – An Ancient race, found usually in their mountain Retreats. This fractious people regularly produce exiles who serve humans throughout the North. Dwarves.

Eldar – An Ancient race, found usually in the Shadowed Isles. This arrogant and proud people occasionally provide aid to the people of the North, and their wandering ‘ambassadors’ are often found meddling where they don't belong.

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