Let’s Make An OD&D Sandbox Campaign (Part Two).

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As you can see, I’ve now managed to sort the scattered map symbols into some semblance of an environment. I’ve also created a few “kingdoms”, or political divisions — notably the wood-elven realm of Cor Arbirros in the west, the mannish kingdoms of Udan and Harwald in the central and northeastern areas, respectively, and the vale-elven land of Khadath in the south. The dwarven kingdoms of Lendalar and Brunheath (which guard the accesses to the vast underground ruin of Gomlaragravir) lie to the southeast. Further west the sea-elven kingdom of Hesperia is noted, but will be detailed later.

Amid these relatively safe harbors are situated areas of given peril, such as the Murkmire to the southwest, the Knollands in the far north, and the waste of Eremia, surrounded by the Hinder Peaks and Dread Mountains, in the southeast. It should be noted that while I did get rid of a few of the markers, all of the others have been named,  either being a major feature (city, town or ruin — one exception being the Bax Thymea, or “Garden of Spirits” in Cor Arbirros: it is a massive and ornate city of the dead, featuring memorials to past ruling families, as well as those fallen in battle) within a kingdom’s borders, or an isolated point of interest (such as the legendary tower of the mad arch-mage Fid).

A note about the names themselves: For a while now I’ve been working with different known languages to give the different races a kind of linguistic identity, with elves speaking tongues heavily influenced by Greek, men with either a mix of Gaelic, Old English and Hebrew (in the case of Udanians) or Old or Middle English (as per the people of Harwald), and the dwarves obviously speaking some weird variant of Old Icelandic. While I have worked up a number of glossaries which I use for some amount of continuity, none of these are actual languages per se, but a hodgepodge of syllables and words which seemed to work together nicely. If anyone out there speaks some modern version of any of these languages, please do not be offended by my butchery of them.

Getting back to the map, pretty much at the center of things is the free-city of Andlachen, which serves as the starting point for the campaign. It is here that the ragtag band of adventurers will meet and initially get involved in some sort of intrigue that will begin their careers, and here that they may return to rest their bones, or sort out their treasures. While I will go into much detail over it later, since I am more or less following Rob Conley’s excellent tutorial here, I still need to hash out the details of the outlying areas to some degree first. So next up will be more or less a whirlwind tour of Eurychra (the Great Realm), providing a peek into the doings of its peoples and descriptions of their surroundings.

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