Monday, January 14, 2013

Averlorn Campaign - Lands and Islands in and Around the Archipelago

The Archipelago is a sprawling island chain running north to south which lies across the shallow sea from the eastern coast of Averlorn  and the free cities of Harbor Reach and Zarathus.  The island chain is about the same size of all of the British Isles combined and starts in the warmer southern climate of the Grand Banks and stretches all the way to the north off of the coast of Fallen Leutra and the Northern Reaches covering a vast stretch of ocean from north to south.

The Sea Elf Kingdom of Alatheon - the Kingdom of Alatheon lies to the north of the Island of Rhaghaera.  The kingdom maintains a series of trading settlements, outposts of a sort on nearby islands including Rhageara. These are always found near the communities of their Volkyr allies and with names such as Tol Alatheon or Dur Alatheon, their names are the source of some confusion among men.

The Archipelago - The Archipelago is series of islands and island chains that is about the Size of all of the British Isles combined.  On the seas of the Archipelago, the Thugee often find themselves at odds with the sea elf culture and the Volkyr (the predominant and native human culture of the Archipelago). Currently, there is no state of war, but that's primarily because the Thugee are so disorganized and lack a central governing body.  Throw in the occasional pirate ship along with the vicious sea devils and you can see that the seas of the Archipelago are quite lawless.  The Thugee's chief antagonists are the Sea Elves, and occasionally, Mountain Elf raiders (sky wolves) who see themselves as the masters of the sky.

There are a few relatively large and xenophobic Elven communities in the Archipelago.  These realms are feudal and ruled by a monarchy chosen from one of the castes (they have a rotating monarchy not unlike what you see in Brusts' work). In that society, a Sun Elf would be seen as a soldier or perhaps a minor noble.

Big Croc Island - this island is or was a notorious pirate hangout.  The last group of pirates that were there came to a poor end 20-30 years ago.  Their hideout was reputed to be located in a series of caves found on the south side of the island off of the main inlet nearby.

Ertris – This City State is the principle rival of Grand Oryx.  Though considerably smaller in populace than Thebos, the Adroisian city state of Ertris wields surprising military might.  The superior natural resources of Ertris which exists in spite of her relatively small geographical area, allows the Ertrisians to field a formidable fleet of dragonships.  Tensions between the Ertris and Grand Oryx are always high and the occasional conflicts occur typically in the skies over the Scourge.

Fallen Leutra – This land is in the distant Northern Reaches and its primary inhabitants are the Thugee tribes of Leutra, the Northmen of Averlorn.  In the distant past, the Serpent Men Empire in Leutra stretched over much of the known world. Their greatest cities and temples were swallowed up by the vastness of the Scourge long ago but many ruins of their once great empire remain in the region of Leutra along with scattered populations of serpent men and lizard men.

The Island of Farault – this nearly deserted island is north of Caursetti.  Long ago, the Thugee erected rune stones of power here and it is seen by the Thugee as a sacred site.  The Stones of creation, as they are called, are purported to have healing power.  When Grumlor, the leader of the Black Crowes was sick (it was said that he was cursed by the gods) the healers of the Brotherhood needed the magic of stones to heal him and sent an expedition to the island to retrieve rubbings of the stones in order to perform powerful healing magics for their leader.

The Sea Elf Kingdom of Golfyria -  the Kingdom of Golfyria lies to the west of the Island of Rhaghaera.

The Great Banks – These savage Polynesian like jungle islands begin southeast of the Archipelago not far from the mainland.   Sea Elves and humans alike live in small villages scattered in and near the Great Banks.  The Volkyr people, a Polynesian like race of island dwellers, originally migrated to the Archipelago from the grand banks and the aboriginal people still dwell here.

The Island of Ilimus – a Thugee island far to the North of the island of Rhaghaera.  The island is home to one or more of the few scattered Thugee clan holdings in the north of the Archipelago island chain.

The Sea Elf Kingdom of Lothalyn – The Kingdom of Lothalyn is quite distant from Rhagheara, lying in the southwest of the Archipelago far closer in fact to the mainland. It is a single kingdom spread across a vast stretch of islands.

The Kingdom of Malithorn – Malithorn lies in the Southeastern portion of the island of Rhaghaera and is a poor swampy stretch of inhospitable land. A network of smaller islands lying off the coast is also part of the Realm of Malithorn and it is here that Ravishar the Undying holds court. His tower of  Nol Gremmen overlooks a forbidding stretch of sea cliffs perched high above the city of Rav'mheken. Ravishar periodically pits his armies against both the Sea Elf lands and the vast holdings of the God King and his Barons. The Undead Lord, for it is almost certain that he is either a lich or similar unliving monstrosity, shows very little interest in actually conquering the island, only in slowly spreading his influence and wresting away lands for his many nobles to control and rule. Not surprisingly, these borders do not remain settled for very long and frequent raiding from both sides often results in certain swatches of land changing hands with alarming frequency.

Ravishar’s humanoid armies consist primarily of goblins and orcs that bear the distinctive yellow and black Killer Bee symbol painted on their shields.  Evil clerics follow Ravishar but usually worship Orcus or other demon gods.  The Thugee of Fallen Leutra and the Northern reaches hold no love for Ravishar since so many of their kind have fallen under his sway, and it is said he uses their stock to create some of his orc soldiers.  For as long as anyone can remember the God King’s country has been at war with the minions of Malithorn.  The last war was merely three years ago.

The forces of ravisher usually slay their enemies using illusion, guile and deceit to achieve their ends and things are often not as they seem.  They often hire assassins to do these deeds who frequently use poisoned weapons. 

Ravishar is a great ally of the various Thugee tribes and most of the humans who dwell in his domain are of Thugee descent. With these hearty folk he produces a surprisingly potent breed of Orc, creatures that form the bulk of his armies, supplemented by horrendous necromantic constructs. Ravsihar the Undying is an ancient being of unsurpassing evil and malice. His deeds are even known in other lands and he appears to have contacts and minion in many lands. Though a number of his followers are indeed Necromancers, his relationship with the Cult of Orcus is strained and may be the result of a splinter cell born sometime ago within Malithorn.

Nadsul il Alatheon Nadsul il Alatheon is a trading outpost on a small island in the north of the Archipelago not far from the Ardrois city of Harbor Reach and is something akin to a military outpost given the assaults and raids it has endured over the years.

The Northern Reaches – The ancestral lands of the Thugee who make up for their primitive ships and barbarous ways through shear numbers and tenacity.  The Thugee are raiders, not invaders and often move on rather than moving in when seeking new targets once an area has been plundered. Their dragonships are not as advanced as those of the other races, though their naval power is quite potent, but not focused in any groups larger than a clan squadron.  There are other inhabitants in the Northern reaches besides the Thugee tribes including other human and demi human settlements.

The Kingdom of Raegleth – the Kingdom of Raegeleth lies in the north of the Archipelago along the western coast of the island of Rhaghaera.  The God King Reigns supreme in the golden domed three arched city of Caursetti and has the sole power and authority to awaken the Imperial dragons during times of strife and war.  His generals control vast armies and fleets all sworn to serve him unto death making Raegleth one of the most powerful Kingdoms found in all of the Archipelago.  Caursetti is located on the northeast coast and the lands to the south are farm more unsettled and controlled by a number of small baronies which guard the ever changing border with Malithorn.

The Island of RhaghaeraRhaghaera, the largest and principle island of the Archipelago, lies in the northern reaches of the island chain. The island is broken into three separate kingdoms; Raegeleth in the north and along the western coast, the Sea Elf holdings of Alatheon along the northeast coast, and the cruel kingdom of Mallithorn in the south.

The Kingdom of Thebos – Ancient Thebos is the country that sits on the volcanic plateau that rises above the scourge that includes the great City State of Grand Oryx and the surrounding areas of Lykaedia (the Anvil) and the planes of the Pangaeus to the north of Grand Oryx.  It is far inland and to the east of the free city of Harbor Reach.


  1. Hi Dan,

    Who did the Ertris city map? Did you? Good stuff!

  2. That's just an image I downloaded from Google images. I'm pretty sure it was from a module but was probably originally a real medieval city that was in the public domain that was allowed to be reused.

  3. That's just an image I downloaded from Google images. I'm pretty sure it was from a module but was probably originally a real medieval city that was in the public domain that was allowed to be reused.

  4. I just looked and its actually the City of Verbobonc from the Temple of Elemental Evil modules though it was probably swiped from a drawing of a previous medieval city that was in the public domain so it was fair game from a copyright standpoint.