True World Resurrection

Mezo-American adventures in Maztica, the True World.
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Seethyr
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True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Fri Dec 01, 2017 10:13 pm

My computer fried over a year ago and then with some family health issues I lost all interest/desire to work on Maztica and even stopped playing the game altogether. I still have to post using my phone or my work computer, but I definitely have the "bug" to start working again. Can't wait to pick up some of the old projects and start some new ones. This time, there will be a new theme.

I'm also amazed at what some folks are doing. I just started reading Jurgen's Maztica and I can't wait to tear into his, and some of the others stuff here! Maztica is Alive!

So the real point of this post though is to talk about what is coming up, or at least the projects I'd like to discuss if anyone would like to join me.

This time around there will be a theme. In my old projects, there was a tag of "TW" followed by a "C" for campaign sourcebooks, "A" for adventures, etc. This time, all projects will be listed under "TWR" for "True World Resurrection" and much like Marvel's phases will all lead up to one major event. Not all projects will be directly connected to this event, but there will be little hints, much like Marvel's post credit scenes. I read somewhere official that "something big is happening over in Maztica" (was it in SCAG?) and maybe that could refer to this if nothing official comes out...

The big event, if you want to know, will be the actual resurrection of the goddess Maztica, who perhaps becomes known in mainland Faerun as well.

Here is some of the projects that never got finished, but are certainly not abandoned. There are also some new ideas that have only recently come up while brainstorming.


1. The Sea Demon's Pearl. An adventure and accessory that introduces a primal form of Maztican ixitchachitl and a sea magic that is an aquatic alternative to hishna and pluma.

2. Fires of Zatal. A multilayered megadungeon and location of zaltec's Darkfyre which is the force behind the original Night of Wailing. The darkfyre's origins are connected in many ways to the theme of the phase itself.

3. Anchorome. A massive undertaking much in line with TWC1 describing a campaign set in the northern continent. There will be classes, monsters, items, history, etc. Essentially creating a whole new but geographically connected campaign to Maztica. The theme will be Native American and Anasazi with much much more.

4. Monsters of the True World Book 2 (Monsters I-Z). This has stats and descriptions of the remaining campaign creatures. Many will be unique, and all will be mesoamerica themed - much like the first book on DMs Guild.

5. Maztican Primer. Though the name will definitely change, this book will be a combination of an accessory with a brief overview and starting package for Maztica along with a short adventure that can bring mainland Faerunians to the continent.

6. The Ball Game. HooverDam's work on this was incredible - I would love to expand on the concept and make a full-fledged supplement out of it if he is willing!
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Jürgen Hubert » Fri Dec 01, 2017 11:40 pm

Sounds ambitious! Two notes:

- I recently had an idea for Anchorome which I will post here very soon.

- I also have some ideas for a monster booklet or booklets which I will tentatively call "Invasive Species" - about new arrivals to Maztica, and how they fit into thr native environment.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Yaztromo » Sat Dec 02, 2017 1:13 am

Happy to read that enthusiasm for gaming is back again! :)
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:35 pm

Here is a draft of what has been completed so far in TWR1 The Sea Demon's Pearl.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Sturm » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:46 am

Good to see you back working on Maztica :)

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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:12 am

Sturm wrote:Good to see you back working on Maztica :)
Missed it quite a bit! I've been keeping tabs for the last year and noticed the land creeping back into official FR canon, and couldn't wait to be part of it.
Yaztromo wrote:Happy to read that enthusiasm for gaming is back again! :)
In some ways its bad. Goodbye exercise routine, hello +10 lb in a month. :D
Jürgen Hubert wrote:Sounds ambitious! Two notes:

- I recently had an idea for Anchorome which I will post here very soon.

- I also have some ideas for a monster booklet or booklets which I will tentatively call "Invasive Species" - about new arrivals to Maztica, and how they fit into thr native environment.
I'm looking forward to the Anchorome thoughts. Right now, it is mostly a blank slate for me, except for some ideas on ancient spellweaver cities, the Land of the Mantis Men, and some cultural materials. I love the name "Ghost People." I highly recommend you read City of Gold because there is a lot of hidden hints in there as to what lies north.

There are never enough monsters, I am afraid to update monsters though and put them only in Maztica because it only becomes a matter of time before your hard work gets an official version somewhere. I like to make my monsters completely homebrewed. On the other hand, I think there can be different versions of monsters - I have worked on a "Maztican Manticore" in the past for example which has its actual scorpion tail from mythology.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Big Mac » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:51 pm

I'll look forward to what you are doing, although it sounds like most of your projects (and most of Jürgen's projects) are going to be set after the time period that I'll be wanting to run games in.
Seethyr wrote:The big event, if you want to know, will be the actual resurrection of the goddess Maztica, who perhaps becomes known in mainland Faerun as well.
I've actually been looking for ways to use some Maztican stuff on one or more of the celestial bodies in Realmspace. I've always thought it was a bit of a shame that Maztica herself was killed. I think there were rules for running PC clerics of dead deities like Leira, so you might be able to have a cult of Maztica worshippers somewhere.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Thu Dec 07, 2017 12:46 am

Big Mac wrote:I'll look forward to what you are doing, although it sounds like most of your projects (and most of Jürgen's projects) are going to be set after the time period that I'll be wanting to run games in.
Seethyr wrote:The big event, if you want to know, will be the actual resurrection of the goddess Maztica, who perhaps becomes known in mainland Faerun as well.
I've actually been looking for ways to use some Maztican stuff on one or more of the celestial bodies in Realmspace. I've always thought it was a bit of a shame that Maztica herself was killed. I think there were rules for running PC clerics of dead deities like Leira, so you might be able to have a cult of Maztica worshippers somewhere.
I really do wish there was a way to make the projects less year/age sensitive. Really though, since it’s not canon material anyway, why not just set it in the age which you’re playing in? There has been so little official material on Maztica since 1992 that I think you can set a lot of Maztica Alive anytime.

What years in Dalereckoning are your campaigns run in btw? Maybe I can determine retroactively some of the specifics of the time in a way that makes sense and give you a little feedback? I’d love to see a little bit of Maztica in space. H’Calos is a mystery, for one, that I’ve wanted to explore in greater depth for a long time.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Sat Dec 09, 2017 2:03 am

The Resurrection phase theme has just worked its way into the Sea Demon's Pearl. The theme is kind of obvious now so I'm going to drop the spoiler tags.


This is just the start, but there is a room that seems out of place that the characters will come across in the adventure. Here is the adventure text (this is in an underwater chamber.
The Sea Demon's Pearl wrote:Room 5: Pillar Room. The temperature in this room is still noticeably uncomfortable, but it is not damaging and it is safe to rest in here, as no minions will willingly pass through Room 4 to get here. There is a long, thin stone in the rooms center which almost reaches the ceiling and looks somehow out of place. The pillar is not free of sea flora but with a successful search (Wisdom (Perception) DC10), the players will find the symbol below engraved on the rock.
Make an Intelligence (Religion) check based on the characters’ background (DC10 for native born, or DC15 for Faerunian characters) to pick up on the fact that the symbol is of the mother goddess Maztica
Any player who touches the symbol will suddenly feel warm despite the chilled waters and have a vision of the dead goddess who beckons them from atop a pyramid that stretches beyond the edge of sight. Before the character can do anything the vision ends. At this point the character will gain inspiration. Each character can only have the vision and gain the inspiration once; however, they are now also immune to the cold damage dealt from the aquatic brown mold.in Room 4.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Jürgen Hubert » Sat Dec 09, 2017 5:12 am

Seethyr wrote:
Seethyr wrote:The big event, if you want to know, will be the actual resurrection of the goddess Maztica, who perhaps becomes known in mainland Faerun as well.
I've actually been looking for ways to use some Maztican stuff on one or more of the celestial bodies in Realmspace. I've always thought it was a bit of a shame that Maztica herself was killed. I think there were rules for running PC clerics of dead deities like Leira, so you might be able to have a cult of Maztica worshippers somewhere.
Looking at Aztec mythology, there is ample precedence for deities dying and rising from the dead. I mean, according to the story of Nanahuatzin, not only did the Sun God have to sacrifice himself to become the new Sun, but so did all the other gods to allow the wind god to move the Sun across the sky (instead of scorching the Earth). Yet they continued to be worshiped, so presumably they didn't stay dead. Or possibly "life" and "death" has not really the same meaning here as it has to our own, modern eyes. Most of us on this board probably grew up in countries strongly influenced by Christianity, which largely views life and death as a one-way trip (with a few notable exceptions) - but what if they were just another state of being, like "sleeping"?

For the record, for Returned Maztica I am going to assume that Kukul is the same as Lord Ao (as perceived by Faerun), which makes all kinds of sense to me. Yes, according to Maztican myths he has "died", but I don't see why this should stop him from getting upset at all the ruckus caused by the Gods of the East and doing something about it.

Finally, let's not forget that "death" is a transitional period for many mortals in the Forgotten Realms as well, thanks to spells like "raise dead". This doesn't sit quite well with many D&D players either (I suspect more of that Christian cultural conditioning), but I think that's entirely appropriate approach to take for a non-European setting like Maztica.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:55 pm

Jürgen Hubert wrote: Finally, let's not forget that "death" is a transitional period for many mortals in the Forgotten Realms as well, thanks to spells like "raise dead". This doesn't sit quite well with many D&D players either (I suspect more of that Christian cultural conditioning), but I think that's entirely appropriate approach to take for a non-European setting like Maztica.
Raising her from the dead sure isn't going to be easy though. In Sea Demon's Pearl, which is just about finished (the adventure is, the Appendix is not), I've already set the stage with a vision of the goddess. I'm planning on working on the monster book next which might also drop a few hints.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Jürgen Hubert » Sun Dec 10, 2017 8:49 pm

In "Returned Maztica" there is going to be a cult of Maztica which is attempting to resurrect her as well. They have partially succeeded... they think. They were able to summon an entity they call "The Green Mother", which I am basically turning into an expy of Shub-Niggurath.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Mon Dec 18, 2017 12:59 am

The Maztican Ball game is the next project which will reference and add to HooverDam's awesome work. I've put many, many hours into it already, creating a three-dimensional mockup of the Ball court from HD's description, adding new rules and a tournament.

In keeping with the phase theme of resurrection, there is a mini adventure where a new group of druids who have foreseen the return of Maztica (the goddess) herself will sponsor the players in a tournament. It's a small part, but introduces this new power group.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:48 pm

TWR2 The Maztican Ball Game is done but I feel no need to slow down.

I really want to continue with this resurrection plot line and am working continuously on the next bunch of projects. I plan to continue the treatise on Mount Zatal, the megadungeon that contains the Heart of Maztica, and I also want to complete a long overdue monster book (continuation of the first one).

Thinking waaaay ahead though to the conclusion of this series, I’d like to start a bit of brainstorming if anyone has any thoughts. So far, I plan to use a location from the boxed set known as the Sunstone. From there, the players can actually find a way to get into the Maztican Planar cosmology and locate Maztica’s (the goddess) spirit. This has alsready been established to exist in TWC1.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Louis_bowwow » Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:11 am

If you are looking for some inspiration, I recommend Ixalan, the new Magic the Gathering setting. It is a different take on the Mesoamerican theme. Very visually stunning. You have natives that have domesticated colorfully plumed dinosaurs. There are invading vampire conquistadors and goblin pirates. It is rife with ideas to plunder. I’m waiting for them to do a campaign write-up like they did for a few of the other settings.

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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:01 pm

Louis_bowwow wrote:If you are looking for some inspiration, I recommend Ixalan, the new Magic the Gathering setting. It is a different take on the Mesoamerican theme. Very visually stunning. You have natives that have domesticated colorfully plumed dinosaurs. There are invading vampire conquistadors and goblin pirates. It is rife with ideas to plunder. I’m waiting for them to do a campaign write-up like they did for a few of the other settings.
Very cool stuff, I had no idea this existed. Story wise, this is all I have been able to find on it...
https://mtg.gamepedia.com/Ixalan

...and it really has me wanting more.

So far it seems like it has the Chult lost world element (which Maztica can do just as well), mixed with some Aztec and even Incan visuals (the sun related artifact?).

The Merfolk are interesting but I think they can be replaced with sahuagin who are known to have at least one significant kingdom in Maztica’s waters north of Kuktaka. I don’t have my materials with me right now, but I remember the name is something freakishly close to Ixalan.

As far as the vampiric conquistadors, that works very very well. I’ve already established a vampiric entity in the books and he could easily have turned a whole legion of Cordell’s Amnian invaders into vamps.

I want more lol
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Zeromaru X » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:12 pm

The Plane Shift: Ixalan (the official 5e conversion) will be released next year, IIRC.

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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Jürgen Hubert » Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:21 pm

Zeromaru X wrote:The Plane Shift: Ixalan (the official 5e conversion) will be released next year, IIRC.
AFAIK Ixalan is not actually Maztica but another Mesoamerican setting from Magic: The Gathering.

Still, it will probably be useful for us.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Louis_bowwow » Tue Dec 26, 2017 5:10 am

This is how I was thinking of using the Ixalan elements. I was thinking about spreading the different elements out across Maztica. The dinosaur riding natives would be found down in Far Payit or south near Lopango’s northern edge. I’m thinking about Fort Flame falling under the vampires control. I established an island on the western coast that was inhabited by Maztica vampires. A little bit of rivalry and turf war between the two factions could be entertaining. In the place of the menfolk, I was thinking about some un-corrupted shallarin. They fled into the fresh water rivers to evade capture by the Dagon worshippers. I wouldn’t use the pirate goblins off hand, but the different dryads could be useful up in Anchorome’.

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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Tue Dec 26, 2017 5:47 pm

These are awesome ideas. Let's see if I can add a bit.
Louis_bowwow wrote:This is how I was thinking of using the Ixalan elements. I was thinking about spreading the different elements out across Maztica. The dinosaur riding natives would be found down in Far Payit or south near Lopango’s northern edge.
Was actually working on almost exactly this. I'm currently designing a new book of monsters and one of the entries will be a "plumed behemoth" template (behemoth gets interchanged with dinosaurs in the Realms frequently) that could be added to any dinosaur. Beyond the cosmetics of additional plumage, I was thinking of working some pluma magic into their abilities along with some increased intelligence.
Louis_bowwow wrote: I’m thinking about Fort Flame falling under the vampires control. I established an island on the western coast that was inhabited by Maztica vampires. A little bit of rivalry and turf war between the two factions could be entertaining.
There's nothing better than Aztec vampires, I'd love to hear more about your island, and FF. I've established a little lore around a master vampire that behaves a bit differently from the norm. In canon Maztican lore, Kukul created mankind by cutting off his fingers (they wriggled to life and became man). Camezotz was the first, and in his hubris he challenged his creators. The whole backstory to that is in Blood Offfering.

Louis_bowwow wrote: In the place of the menfolk, I was thinking about some un-corrupted shallarin. They fled into the fresh water rivers to evade capture by the Dagon worshippers. I wouldn’t use the pirate goblins off hand, but the different dryads could be useful up in Anchorome’.
I never thought about using shalarin before, but with the proximity to the Sea of Corynactis, yeah that definitely works.
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:17 am

I think I’ve managed to outline the entire remainder of this adventure series (I guess it’s an adventure path?). It is combining a bunch of ideas that have been discussed before in a lot of weird ways but I like how it has come together a LOT. Now, I’m just hoping the end products end up decent.

Needless to say this is highly spoilerific for some home brew upcoming adventures. I can’t see why you’d not want to know everything yet but I just want to give this warning nevertheless.

Here’s what’s up so far and how it’s connected to the metaplot...

TWR1 The Sea Demon’s Pearl

The players come across an old symbol of the goddess and when they touch it they have a beckoning vision of Maztica calling out to them. It has very little to do with the adventure, but it starts the process.

TWR2 The Maztican Ball Game

The PCs are recruited by a new power group known as the Druids of Maztica who need the PCs to be successful in a tournament in order to get the word out that the goddess is prophesized to return.

That’s what’s done so far, and I know of at least two more adventures (possibly 3) in the path hat I’m planning. This is what I think will happen, but it could change. So these are the proposed projects...

TWR3 The Door of Stars

The players are summoned to the mountain city of Otomi by a Druid of Maztica named Malinalli. She sets them on a quest to find a portal in the mountains known as “The Door of Stars.” In the past, the Otomi have used this for to abandon the city for a time when faced with hopeless odds against attackers (like Nexal in centuries past).
The PCs need to find a code to set the portal to the proper destination but it is hidden in the same City of the Dead (Mictlaneca) that was described in the original Maztica Boxed Set.
After finding the code, they open the Door of Stars and end up on another world. This world contains the Mechica - if you are a grognard like myself, you’ll recognize this as the location where the Mechica adventure from the 1980s Dragon Magazine #70 had been set. The book will connect the lore from that setting to the Zateca (a race of people that disappeared from Maztica canonically centuries ago).
From this world, they need to steal something called the Risa Stone after enlisting allies from the oppressed tlaloques (a race of gnomes) and Sapotec (name evolved from the Zateca, the canonical previous civilization of Huacli). This Stone will somehow be able to distract the god zaltec long enough so that he doesn’t interfere in the eventual resurrection of the goddess.

TWR4 Zatal - The Mountain of Fire

In this adventure and sourcebook, Zatal will be redefined as THE megadungeon of the True World. At its base and lowest level lies the corrupted heart of the goddess Maztica herself, still beating and alive, it is the source of the mysterious Darkfire and the Night of Wailing that changed the True World forever. The heart must be stolen from a powerful minion of Zaltec known as the Viper (thank you forever Dazzlerdal for him!) and brought forth from the mountain - forever weakening its evil and ensuring a second Night of Wailing never occurs.

TWR5 <currently unnamed>

Still brainstorming the pieces of this one but I am thinking the players will have to travel to the Maztican planes to connect the goddess’ spirit directly! From her spirit, they are taught the remaining steps they will need to do to ressurect her. Part of it involves using the Risa Stone to distract Zaltec, but then they must bring Maztica’s heart to the fabled lake of quicksilver known as the Sunstone. As it turns out, the Sunstone is the spilled blood of the goddess when Zalrec beheaded her. Now with her heart, the belief of the people, the non interference of her son, and her blood, the players and Druids can perform the proper ritual to bring her back into the world.

*I see I’m going to have to edit this post a lot for its grammar later - but I’m on a phone - this isn’t easy lol
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Louis_bowwow » Sat Dec 30, 2017 7:08 am

Sounds like it could be fun.

Below is the basic gist of my vampire kingdom idea. It provides a lost empire and a new antagonist.


Around 1300 years before the discovery of Maztica, by Cordell, an empire was founded on the island of Huetle. It was a nation that was ruled by a council of seven elder Maztican vampires known as the Lords of Night. The empire was called Noche, they worshipped Azartac, the Blood god(I took him from Goodman Games book “Points of Light II”, I highly recommend this book). The vampires spread from the island and subjugated the lands now belonging to Huacli and as far north as Otomi. The vampires were held in check from spreading any further due to the emergence of desmodu from the cavern kingdom of Carlsbad that lies below the surrounding mountains. Natural predators of the Maztica vampires and immune to most of their powers, the bat-men kept the vampires from spreading across the land like a plague. The vampires ruled what they had managed to conquer with an iron fist and loyal werejaguar soldiers. At this point, the vampires were content to feed off the local populace and grew complacent. Ocassionally they would send out squads of werejaguars to procure more “livestock” for their larder.

After centuries of being the vampires food source, the locals grew discontent and struck a deal with the desmodu. On a summer day in the year 400, the locals fought back with the aid of the desmodu in what was called the Day of the Purge. Vampires were slaughtered in their sleep by the thousands. Those that were not killed, fled back to the island of Huetle and the capitol of Noche. The locals planned for this and allowed some vampires to escape. They infected one of the fleeing vampires with a magical disease that caused insatiable bloodlust. The vampire fed upon its vampire kin, spreading the contagion even further. The Lords of Night, seeing the fall of their once great empire, sealed themselves in a tomb in the lowest catacombs of the capitol. Almost every vampire was dead within a week of the outbreak. Those that did not die, degenerated into savage blood fiends that roamed the ruins of the capitol. The empire fell into obscurity and was forgotten within a few generations. The locals that threw off the yoke of the vampires, would later go on to found the city states that comprised Huacli. The desmodu retreated back into the caverns below and would be forgotten as well.

Fast forward to after the Night of Wailing. Nexalans fleeing the humanoids of Nexal, traveled north to escape. The people of Huacli were not happy to see people that they had been at war with, coming into their lands. They did not greet them with open arms. The Nexalans fled to the coast, where they had heard of an island that was uninhabited. They made great rafts and sailed for the island. To their shock, there appeared to have once been a civilization on the island, but it looked like it had been abandoned centuries ago. They appeared to worship some local deity with a bat motif. Warriors were sent into the ruins to investigate. They went deep into the catacombs and found a sealed area. Using magic, they opened the tomb. They did not find anything inside. They left the catacombs because it was starting to get dark. That night the elder vampires arose and attacked the refugees. Every man, woman and child was consumed or turned. The Lords of Night wanted nothing more than to reclaim their lost empire. They have sent out single vampires scouts to bring back knowledge of the current goings on in the world and any word of their long time enemies, the desmodu. They are intrigued about the new pale skinned people that have arrived from over the seas.


As far as Fort Flame for conquistador vampires, I think it might be too far north. Ulatos or one of the plantations around it might work better.

Louis_bowwow
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Louis_bowwow » Sat Dec 30, 2017 7:21 am

Another product line I recommend is the Urban Adventures line by 0one Games. The setting has a new world feel, with artwork that depicts conquistador dwarves and Aztec elves. I use the main city as my template for New Waterdeep.

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Seethyr
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Seethyr » Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:07 pm

That’s some really good stuff. I’m wondering, since they’re centrally located in Huacli, how they interacted with the City of the Dead (Mictlaneca).

The Door of Stars will probably have some reference to this empire if you don’t mind. Easily, they could be connected to the Zateca that once inhabited Huacli.

I have an established vampire lord further east - his name is Camezotz. Perhaps he could be the source of the conquistador vamps... Check out TWA3 Blood Offering if you want to give him and his lore a look
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Louis_bowwow
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Re: True World Resurrection

Post by Louis_bowwow » Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:45 pm

You can go ahead and use anything I post. Cut it up or rearrange it however it best fits for your books.

I have looked at TWA3. There is a lot of good lore in it.

Do you have a source for the Mictlaneca and Zateca information? I have not heard of them or I missed it while reading.

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