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Brainstorm: Lost Cities, Strange Treasures

I'm in the mood to brainstorm something. Tell me of the cities of the Southlands, Nuria-Natal, Nurambeki, Shebai, and Ishadia. Tell me of the ruins in the deserts and mountain highlands, the lost sites in the deep interior.

Let's brainstorm in an African, Arabian, Persian, or draconic style. What sort of lost city most appeals? What sort of ruins would you send your PCs to in Midgard? What treasures are hidden there?


( 19 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 17th, 2013 06:09 pm (UTC)
I'd love something Sea-Titan-ish. I'd like to think about something like a City of Fiery Jinn with human slaves.

Snake people are always a good thing, maybe even squatting on the non-snake-people ruins.

Possibly some branching out from the 4E OD project, _The Lost City?_ Maybe extending the mythology of that site further?

I want to figure out what's keeping the central part of Midgard out of the Southlands, and what keeps most of the Southlands from pushing up into Central Midgard.

Jim Groves
Oct. 17th, 2013 06:13 pm (UTC)


Oct. 17th, 2013 10:19 pm (UTC)
I hear and obey. Sea Titans have sunk the Southlands. BRAINSTORM COMPLETE!
Jim Groves
Oct. 17th, 2013 10:41 pm (UTC)

Okay. I got excited. Didn't think that through.

::kicks Ben for making me look dumb from under the table:: ;-)
Oct. 17th, 2013 10:47 pm (UTC)
Hey, I think there's room to do *something* with the sea titans. Maybe an island chain, where each island has its own titan overlord or cyclops or mysterioso warlord.

Maybe a sea titan who rules from shore, banned from the ocean by strange tides?

I just don't want a whole lot of nautical and aquatic ideas for Southlands, because it's mostly desert and jungle and mountains, in my mind.

Feel free to talk me out of that. :)
Jim Groves
Oct. 17th, 2013 10:59 pm (UTC)
I'll rise to the challenge.

When I introduced the sea titans to Midgard, they were my nod to Gene Wolfe. I never knew Monte Cooke was also a Gene Wolfe fan.

They have little direct connection to Nethys, but they concede that his domain mostly aligns with their own. Their issue is gravity, which works against them. If they drown the world, that problem is fixed—and it gets rid of competing interests, like the Dragons, as Ben mentioned.

What if we had a renegade titan.. who contacts the surface of the southlands from an underground sea (ala the Darklands).

He doesn't see the campaign for rising the oceans going anywhere any time soon. He creates minions but sets them to a different conspiracy. How to reacquire the means to achieve great size while not being smeared by gravity.

They're trying to create kaiju.. and if they succeed, he'll be able to walk the lands once more, as a living god!

So you have strange new creatures abroad on the land. Conspiracy and secret powers. A little Underworld connection.. and a sinister plot that eventually includes giant monsters.

Which we can do with the new kaiju template appearing in B4 which is shipping when? Today and Tomorrow?
Oct. 17th, 2013 11:15 pm (UTC)
My thought would be to have the Southlands be the ancestral homeland of the Sea Titans. They left (or were forced to leave) and ended up enslaved or tied to Nethus. The people of the Southlands are the former worshipers, servants, slaves, gladiators and followers of the Titans. They wait for their gods to return.
Jim Groves
Oct. 17th, 2013 06:12 pm (UTC)
This is a fast free association answer, straight from the gut.


Why not African? Frankly, lack of knowledge, awareness, and familiarity.

Why not Persian or Arabian? Even though there hasn't been anything done with these regions very recently, I have seen content from there recently enough. Legacy of Fire, Mummy's Mask coming out, and so on.

I don't think there has been a really strong draconic product lately. I know Paizo did some dragon books this year, and for some reason they didn't scratch the itch, they just inflamed it for me.

Or maybe I'm just trying to rationalize why I'd like to see some good old Dragon action.
Jim Groves
Oct. 17th, 2013 06:14 pm (UTC)
Sea Titans.

Forget the dragons!
Oct. 17th, 2013 10:21 pm (UTC)
I'm always pro-dragons, though I agree that I haven't gotten super-excited about the last few attempts.

I haven't picked up Dragon's Demand, may need to try that one. I seem to remember the author from Way Back When.
Oct. 17th, 2013 06:27 pm (UTC)
A Traveling City
The first tale to come to my mind is one of a traveling city. It's citizens and businesses wander the desert in a massive collection of caravans and camels, striking tents and lean-toes for days, weeks, or months at a time before packing up and setting off again with no obvious rhyme or reason. The layout of the city always changes as its people setup wherever they chose. Thanks to magic and creative engineering, most of the normal amenities of a permanent city can be found here.

There is one constant, however. A great fortified tent - always located at the center of the city - that serves as the palace to the ruling sultan and his entourage. It is also here that a secret order of protectors stand vigil over a hidden nest of dragon eggs - sworn to protect them from a menacing evil. In fact, the original purpose of the city was to keep the eggs hidden - never letting them rest too long in one location.

Edited at 2013-10-17 06:44 pm (UTC)
Oct. 17th, 2013 10:22 pm (UTC)
Re: A Traveling City
We sort of have the travelling city on the Rothenian Plain, but that's more gypsies and cossacks and mongols and centaurs.

Might be room to do a very different take of the idea in the desert. Nomads have been fascinating me lately.
Oct. 18th, 2013 06:40 pm (UTC)
Re: A Traveling City
Indeed, nomads with a secret agenda.
Oct. 17th, 2013 07:57 pm (UTC)
I'd like to see a Prester John situation - the something familiar placed into the exotic location has great potential.

Perhaps army from the Seven Cities ended up deep in the Southlands via some portal (Lost Tower?) and established their own small kingdom. Did they teach their "Central Midgard" ways to the locals?

Or what did the denizens of the Southland do during the Mage Wars? Did they sit helplessly while the wizards to the North summoned world-breaking creatures?

Perhaps they attempted to summon an opposing force - a Walker attuned to nature. Of course, you know *that* had to end poorly for them.
Oct. 17th, 2013 10:25 pm (UTC)
Hm. Not sure how many ties to the Central Midgard stuff we need here. Some, but not a ton.

Anyone got ruined city ideas that are tighter than a theme? I am thinking a city like the floating cities of the Uros, but with more grippli, lizardfolk influences, a dark hippo idol that devours children or eggs, many rafts, things sinking into a lake.... And then an undead mirror of the floating city, under the waters.
Oct. 18th, 2013 12:59 am (UTC)
How about an ancient cut-stone city, very blockish, very square-griddish, along the southern edge of the desert, but it's been overcome with dunes and mud-building roachlings, who have overbuilt the whole thing with mud-spires and who explore, scavenge the worked goods of the city?

Or a series of these colonies, overcoming the old, stone-work cities.


Edited at 2013-10-18 01:03 am (UTC)
Oct. 18th, 2013 06:43 pm (UTC)
A lost race or civilization who still lives in the ancient runes of a city that can only be viewed/accessed through the reflection of the lake over which it floats?
Oct. 18th, 2013 07:16 am (UTC)
Love the dark hippo god idea! I am a big fan of jungle settings so something set far to the south with hippo gods and lizard folk would be cool. Do any of you remember the cover to Al-Qadim's Ruined Kingdoms? So awesome - I've always wanted to set an adventure at that waterfall.
( 19 comments — Leave a comment )