Welcome to Telrhin. A world setting for dice & paper rolepaying games. Home to my campaigns since 1984.

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The Site Blog: thoughts and stray comments on developing an FRPG world as well as the odd story from the campaigns.

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The Pox Crain

The Pox Crain is a bar in the dusty streets of Dryer Mob. Steps lead down to the relative cool of a low vaulted cellar near the Ivory Sook in Southwarren. It smells of hookahs, fish oil from the small kitchen, and cabbage. Sounds of the sook drift in from the street above and mix with the conversations of old men playing tiles, washer women in the alley behind, and the talk of travelers, traders, and the occasional drunk.

To most people, that's all there is. But to some, the Pox Crain is a vexing series of half seen pathways into the Veil, full of whispers and echoes of dreams, spirits and the dead.

image: Tunis old quarter (copyright voyagevirtuel.co.uk)

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Lost Gods

If there were such a thing as archaeologists they'd find remnants of forgotten gods as well as different interpretations of the current ones. There's Bachnel, the brother of Gahl who was god of night and dreams, and the Goat God of the Grasslands called Puknet. There are ancient Rayikian texts with references to Borgia goddess of seizures and possession. There are whole religions that are lost, like the Sanctum of the Four Winds.

image: Brom's Lost Gods

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Normal Folks in a World of Monsters

Wolves, bears, garden-looting rabbits: real problems for medieval villagers. They also had bandits, plagues and feudal wars. Add in some griffons, goblins, ghosts, dire wolves and a few heartless fairies and you wonder how normal people get through a single day in a fantasy world.

How do things work in a world with magic? We focus on the beasts and monsters in the wild, but villages and settlements have to have some way of surviving. Following are some thoughts on how it all can work, making better sense for a world while adding layers of story and even -- gasp! -- adventure hooks.

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Seven Years

Seven Years of the Rahman Campaign

It all ended in the mining town of Pitfife near the Copper Lake in the Cairn Hills. Grimly, as expected. The final showdown with Kleg Blacklung, the man who killed their grandfather, came down to the wire. Abas and Kleg took each other down, and though not dead the brothers were bleeding out and the last of the Rahmans standing was a henchwoman named Hissie. Not that Kleg had many men left, and some of them were still on fire: but either the brothers would die there on the floor or at best find themselves chained and battered on their way to execution.

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Rope Bridge Frying Pan

Adventure Setup: The Rope Bridge Frying Pan

Rope Bridge

I wrote this as an adventure setup, in the style of a (long) event promo blurb:

The gorge looked a lot nicer when you weren’t running for your life. The sagging rope bridge bounces more than you’d like and you’re not making good time, what with all the loot you’re carrying.

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Ravines and Other Killers

The party's been stuck in the wilderness for months now. Winter-edge-of-nowhere wilderness. It turns out the biggest npc killer is ravines. You'd think wolves, bears, oversized spiders, bloodsucking vines, tentacled freshwater things, or the usual hordes of hostile humanoids. Angry fairies. Carniverous pandas. Nope. Ravines.

Pretty sure we've lost six party members to ravines.

The fantasy genre gets a little dull in a winter wilderness. Most things are hibernating. No farms or towns to explore or draw out the hordes of humanoids or country brigands. You're stuck with dragons. And that's if they're even warm-blooded. I found myself making up reasons why there are kobolds with catapults.

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The Big Server Migration

[update: I was about to delete this post, but for fun throught I'd instead mention where we are now (January 2019): Drupal 7, https and global CDN]

We're back up after a brief downtime, on our new speedier and shinier server and database! Access should be more reliable now.

This paves the way for the other upgrades: Drupal 7 (yeah, we're still on 6) and a shiny new theme! Which will be responsive for all those times you wish you could check out the site and all you have is a crappy phone. All of those many times.

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