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On Sunday I found myself with an hour and a half to kill but also tied to the house so I decided to watch buy phentermine wholesale on Netflix. My first impression of the first five minutes was that they had the the depiction of the Pictish warriors/savages down perfectly. At that point things looked promising.

Pictish Warriors from the movie…
Pictish Warriors, they all seem to share a sort of brutal Native American vibe.

After that my opinion changed somewhat. To be honest I think this is a pretty dreadful movie and I read this evening that it cost $90M to make and grossed $21M, making a net loss of $69M. I am guessing most of that went on the CGI which was certainly plentiful and was mostly used in place of any real plot and dialogue. I admit that you don’t engage with Conan for his witty repartee.

So even when watching the movie it was plainly obvious that this was a dreadful film and no amount of topless slave girls and serving wenches was going to save it. Surely this was obvious to the creators at the time?

What the film tried to depict was what we would consider an entire adventure, not a full campaign but certainly more than just a collection of encounters. There was a definite character motivation, revenging Conan’s father’s death, that ran through the film but the fact that Conan was plainly not doing anything to further that revenge until a huge clue lands in his lap says that if this were a game and not a movie then the film represents a character goal inserted into a greater campaign.

We do get a few encounters along the way. Conan and crew attack a slave caravan. Their plan involves starting an avalanche of rocks down on to the slavers caravan and then charging in and killing the remaining slavers. Being Hollywood all those rocks only hit slavers, no innocent slaves were hurt. You try that in one of my games and there being 20 or so slaves for every slaver there is a very good chance that you will be scraping Slave jam off the road.

Another encounter has some bad guys row up to Conan’s ship and attack them. Conan’s crew then defeat them and stand around on deck cheering. No one thought to wonder where the attackers had come from. Maybe if Conan had asked a few more questions he would have exacted his revenge a few years earlier?

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Yes, right near the end the hero and NPC thief (for want of a better phrase) do battle with a submarine beasty. We never really see it, just a mass of kraken-like tentacles. The fight is a bit so-so and the CGI a bit mediocre but the set for the scene, and the beast itself was really evocative of the Cthulhu style dark gods of the Robert E. Howard’s Hyboria (Howard and HP Lovecraft were close friends).

So what I think distinguished the best from the worst in this movie what that all the early encounters were disconnected and there was no visible plot thread to bring them together. Leading up to the water beasty scene we got to see Conan recruiting his thief NPC, breaking into the BBEG’s fortress and then encountering the beast and its ‘keeper’. We were suddenly into a story that was progressing from challenge to challenge and had a continuity.

I suspect that writing a good movie is slightly harder than writing a plot for a gaming campaign or at least a enough plot for a few gaming sessions but if we put the player in the seat of the viewer, unless there is a reason and a feeling of progress then games would be just a procession of meaningless encounters. We are almost back to wandering monsters, that is how the first half of the movie felt.

So how could the movie been made better? Well you could have lost the first half of the film and started with the recruiting the party to attack the fortress. Conan could have explained the entire plot up to that point in about 5 seconds “Fifteen years ago this man killed my father, I will have my revenge! Who is with me?” <kick over tavern table and shake sword>

We could then have launched into the one bit of the movie they made well. After the kraken scene they tried a bit too hard to be Indiana Jones and the movie slumps back into the mire.

For GMs, if you have ever watched his movie, or any like it, the lesson must be to draw a compelling world for your players. Not for the characters, but the players. If they are not invested in it then the best plot in the world will become just a linear series of hack and slash encounters. I think this is same idea that Brian has been pushing for for RMU. It has to have that compelling world, Shadow World, to get people to invest their heart and soul into wanting to bring the game, world and story alive for their players.

I know there is an argument that not everyone wants to play in Shadow World but casting RMU as the Shadow World rules does not exclude anyone. I don’t adventure in Grayhawk but I reuse old style D&D modules. Most people do not adventure in Faerun but they will happily use 5e stuff. GMs tinker with bought materials, they reuse and they extend them. They always have and they always will. I have put RM characters, adventuring in the Dales through Traveller adventures. I just replaced spaceships with wagons. After all a good adventure is a good adventure regardless of any fancy dressing up but for my players the clothes I put on that adventure helped bring their little corner of the Forgotten Realms to life.

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Welcome to my third review of the Loremaster Series; today we are going to explore what is possibly the most well known or popular of ICE modules: The Cloudlords of Tanara. Over the years there have been other reviews (see some links at the end) and Cloudlords has been treated to the Terry Amthor rewrite, but I’m going to focus on the original version and review it in the context of the Loremaster series and how it might have impacted the later Shadow World series.

Like the Iron Wind, the Cloudlords is undeniably “base DNA” of Shadow World where Vog Mur and Shade of the Sinking Plain felt like stand-a-alones. So despite some timeline issues and slight ret-conning, it’s easy to use Cloudlords as a canon SW book. In reality, most of the timeline and history issues are going to be lost on the players anyway!

First, let’s start with the cover art done by Gail Mcintosh. The Cloudlords is iconic cover art from the early golden era of RPG’s and is part of what I consider the “trifecta” of Gail’s early cover art that creates movement (everyone is wielding/swinging weapons) and depth (a contrast of foreground featuring the backside of a protaganist and a foe facing forward in the background). The trifecta:

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Some would argue that these covers were less refined than her subsequent work for MERP covers or Dragon magazin but I think they are fantastic and captured the unique nature of early Rolemaster compared to the other d20 settings.

Once you turn the cover page you are immediately drawn into a whole new RPG module environment: a color map of “The Forge of the  Lords of Essence”!!!  That map label alone raises all sorts of questions and promises that are delivered further into the book. This is definitely not the “buy phentermine new zealand“!

Since Terry Amthor was the author of this book, you’ll note that the Table of Contents follows a familiar structure that is adhered to in later SW books: World Info, Geography, Flora & Fauna Politics & Power, Key Places, Master Charts and then Adventures. For regular SW users, this is a well understood template that has mostly continued throughout the product line.

The Introduction covers the fundamentals of the Loremaster world, but it’s not currently named Kulthea yet. The Flows of Essence are discussed, but primarily as the source of “magic” and the basis for RM’s three realms. In 1.17 Peoples, the test describes the isolationism of various peoples and creatures due to mountain ranges and broad seas. In the next section, History, it describes: “…a strong north-south flow of that invisible yet dangerous force of Essence. These elements combine to make passage..virtually impossible”. The kernels of SW are there but haven’t been fully fleshed out with the Flows acting as physical barriers.

The History section is a simplified version of the SW timeline: the 1st Era, Kadena, The Second Age, Loremasters, the Wars of Dominion and finally the Third Age. What’s different? There is no mention of Andraax, the Althans haven’t been tied to an advanced technological culture and there is no mention of the Lords of Orhan. In fact, it was the Loremasters who broke their creed of non-involvement to tip the scales of the Wars of Dominion.

The next few pages are some map symbols and B&W geography maps–Fenlon of course. As a GM these Fenlon maps are priceless–in fact, it’s all I really need to run a game. The maps depict trails, roads, ruins, towns, waters, cave cities, burials etc.  Amazingly, Fenlon also incorporates elevations, foliage types, and settlement patterns of people and animals. It’s really an incredible resource in these books, and frustrating that this type of quality can’t be produced at a reasonable cost. ?

Section 2.1 The Environment.

A page and half, covers basic terrain types, weather patterns, the calendar, hints at some moons and a sampling of creatures. Interestingly and in line with SW, there are very few monsters: Steardan, Garks, Demons & Undead are referenced. Under Demons, there is a reversal from the Iron Wind, ad the Pales are described as having 6 levels with the weakest being the First Pale. Here again, we can see world design shifting into place for the 1st Edition Master Atlas that came out in ’88-’89.

Section 2.2 Peoples.

Terry creates 4 distinct peoples, but are there perhaps any more iconic peoples of Shadow World than the Duranaki? Spiked and colored hair, leather armor, odd black weapons, live underground–very punk rock. It’s in the Worship sections that Terry starts developing the eventual SW pantheon. The Sulini have “Numa” the Ocean God, the Myri have Ilila, Earth Goodess, Allanda (Storms), Keo (Moons), Davix (Festivals) and Phaon (Sun) and the Yinka have Yugal.

3.1 Politics and Power

In a buy phentermine las vegas, I discussed the Xiosians and part of my solution was based on this book.  The Cloudlords of Tanara are Zori  who crossed the mountains and discovered an ancient abandoned city with artifacts (the Cloudlord Gear) and the Steardan. They, like many historical cultures, co-opted the ancients legacy and became the Cloudlords. This section also covers the political powers of the Myri, Duranaki and Yinka and finally includes the Cult of Ezran.

The Cult of Ezran. Basically an outcast group of the Cloudlords was corrupted by a wandering Elf, a servant of the Unlife. Cloudlords makes no mention of the Priests Arnak, but it’s natural to ret-con Teleus as a Priest. Now an Undead, Teleus rides a “Demon-Horse” and wields the Implementor–an idea that probably morphed into the Heralds of the Night. To combat the Implementor, there are 3 very cool “swords”, the Narselkin. Give it to Terry, he comes up with the coolest magic items and these are no exception. Each has particular powers and meant for an Essence user, Fighter and Channeler.

Cool Places. The layouts and fortresses found in the Cloudlords are a step forward in the development of the “Lords of Essence” aesthetic. These buildings are clearly a fusion of classic marble style with industrial high tech features, radiant heat, locking doors and laen and shaalk panels. There are lots of odd rooms that are interesting but feel more like a standard dungeon “puzzle room” than a logical room in a fortress or structure. Other layouts include a Lords of Essence forge, a Duranaki hold, vaults for the Narselkin and the temple of the Yinka.

Finally, the module has detailed master charts for NPCs, military, a huge herb chart, and a great section featuring unique and notable magic items!!

The last sections cover details on the Navigators–a more involved section than the paragraphs in the Iron Wind 3rd ed. Plus there is a glossary that makes for an interesting read and touches upon a lot of later SW content. Special metals and materials, languages etc.

Over all, the Cloudlords of Tanara is a fantastic supplement and takes the base DNA found in the Iron Wind and really morphs into the Shadow World style.  When compared to the canon established in the original Master Atlas, there just isn’t much change. Perhaps the most significant is the additional of the pantheons of the Lords of Orhan and the Dark Gods of Charon.

So why is it relevant? Clearly in design and layout it establishes all the later SW products and while it was re-written by Terry decades later the original Cloudlords of Tanara makes a great stand-alone setting or as part of your SW campaign.

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Recently during a game session, we had a bit of a dispute over what weapons and armor a player might have had on them while in a city. Even in a lengthy campaign, many of my RPG experiences have defaulted to the idea that players have just 1 “kit”–basically the clothes, armor, weapons and gear that are listed on their equipment sheet. As “murder hobos” they don’t have a home, wardrobe or a lot of possessions beyond gear and wealth. Therefore, the players are always in their adventure gear; fully kitted out, armed and armored.

But that’s just silly in many situations. Certainly major cities have laws and rules about armed citizenry. Some may only allow nobles to carry blades; others may require “buy phentermine 15mg” on weapons, or others may require registration or membership in a guild or militia to permit being armed in public.

Those are regulatory issues, but there should also be cultural norms as well. Clanking around in plate or chain armor and wearing a full helm should seem rude or unacceptable in major urban areas. Visitations to courts, merchants houses or administrative facilities will probably require dis-arming. Certainly higher end taverns, inns and restaurants are not going to allow customers that are fully armed or armored.

Finally, it’s just not hygienic to wear the same clothes, underclothes, padding, armor, helms and adventuring clothes all the time! The players will stink, boots will be worn out from travel, clothes torn, armor will dent or bend and a host of wear & tear that’s normal in everyday life. If you’ve ever done any lengthy hiking or outdoor adventuring you know how fast gear can wear out.

In my game, players default to “civilian kit”. They have a appropriate wardrobe for normal, everyday life, often based on their cultural and racial background. We also rate it in a variety of ways (poor, functional, merchant, noble, luxurious or just rank it from 1-10). The quality of the garb will dictate how they interact with various societal classes. As the players have grown in power and reputation, they find themselves interacting with high levels of society. So while they might be murder hobos, they can’t dress like one! Typically they will be armed–but only a staff, or short blade so the heavy fighters feel at a real disadvantage.

Since their civvies are the defaults, that means they have to tell me when they are getting into their combat/adventure kit. Even when travelling, I don’t assume players will continually wear heavy armor, have a shield strapped onto their armor and have a weapon drawn. Of course players want to have all of that when they are ambushed or a sudden encounter unfolds!

This is more of a concern in campaigns–if you are running one-off adventures, dungeon crawls, or just independent adventures most of this won’t matter. The players “gear up” and run the gauntlet. However, if you are running a session or game that doesn’t focus on wilderness/tomb/ruins, and are more urban, what do you do? Do you have an “open carry” “armored up” style game?


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Many years ago, Matt Hanson (Vroomfogle on the RM Forums) hosted the “Nomikos Library” which had the full and complete timeline from Shadow World. It was a great resource, but after some years of hosting the site, he ended up shutting it down due to server issues, power usage, spam, hackers and all the other hassles of hosting a site.

There has been some buy phentermine with online consultation on the RMForums about restarting the site, but it’s doubtful Matt has the time or energy to tackle it again. Therefore, we here at Rolemasterblog are in discussions about whether we can resurrect the timeline here on the blog site and how it would work. Terry has been supportive and waiting on other principals to weigh in with their opinions.

As I touched upon in an earlier blog, IF there ever was a new Master Atlas it probably should leave out the detailed timeline due to size and ongoing changes. It makes sense to host it somewhere where it can be updated and edited as canon products come out. That’s just my opinion of course.

We’d like to add some filters so the timeline could be reduced by subject matter, geography or key words. I’m not the “coder” so much of that will be left to the experts. Obviously one concern is whether it’s important to keep the “secrets” of Shadow World fire-walled off from players and accessible to GM’s only. On the other hand, SW pdf’s are easily found online and Terry’s buy phentermine with online prescription spills a lot of the settings meta secrets so it’s not like the info isn’t out there if a player really wanted to find it.

We welcome your comments and thoughts.

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Last week was an über week for us.

buy phentermine vs ephedrineFirst up we have The Inn of Dusk. This is the latest 50 in 50 adventure  hook and the 17th so far.

The Inn of Dusk is an inn that has been haphazardly extended over the years. It is the focal point of the local community and sits near an old and now rarely used trade route. The Inn has a secret and is far more dangerous to visit than might be though; quite what the hazard is can be chosen by the GM from a list suggested for different power levels.

Next up we have had a bit of cross over with the Fanzine.

buy phentermine in egyptIssue 9 went out in both buy phentermine in england and buy phentermine reddit editions. This was one of my favourite issues so far with three adventures, new monsters and the return of the Shadow World section.

Overlapping with the delayed print and kindle editions, the PDF version went out much earlier, we have Issue 10 of the fanzine (February 2018). This is a really important issue as it contains the first printing of BASiL (Essence pt 1), completely updated advice and notes from using BASiL.

buy phentermine reviewsEssence Part 1 added 35 new spell lists to Rolemaster. It is available on buy phentermine rx as PDF and in print and Kindle on buy real phentermine 37.5 online.

Oh and I am experimenting with new look covers. These latest editions are up to 70 to 80+ pages so we are putting out a decent magazine I feel.


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In a buy phentermine tab 37.5mg I reviewed some of the earliest ICE ads that were featured in the Dragon Magazine. Iron Crown’s two very first products were buy adipex tablets online, a drop in combat module for use in other game systems, and buy phentermine online yahoo answers, an expansive “generic” fantasy setting.

Later, ICE would formalize their modules into the Loremaster Series which would then morph into Shadow World.  The Loremaster series consistested of 4 modules: The Iron Wind, The World of Vog Mur, The Cloudlords of Tanara and the Shade of the Sinking Plain. Two additional modules were advertised but never published: “where to buy yellow phentermine

I thought I would do a “deep dive” analysis into the 4 Loremaster modules, starting with the Iron Wind. The Iron Wind was written/published in 1980, the start of the “Golden Age” of RPG’s and is a informative marker for the trajectory of Iron Crown Enterprises, it’s creative style and future product development. There are 3 basic versions: a b&w Parchment edition, a colored cover parchment version and then the final blue/green cover edition. As of yet, Terry hasn’t expressed an interest in a new updated edition, but this may be due to authorship issues as well. (If I recall, authorship was shared by, or predominantly done by Pete Fenlon).

There are a number of traditional online reviews of the Iron Wind, but I wanted to review the original 1st edition b&w parchment, offer my thoughts and identify any material changes that occur with each edition. But first off, let me say this: in my opinion, The “final, 3rd edition” Iron Wind is one of the best RPG adventure supplements ever produced. It was a self-contained sand box with a great mix of cultures, geography, structures, cities and plot narratives. While Judges Guild, Midkemia Press and others produced third party adventure content for D&D in the same period, these were drop-in products, lacking distinct and novel cultural frameworks beyond the “re-purposed renaissance style” or “Gygaxian racial tropes”. Too me, the lack of Orcs, Goblins and “True Elves” in the Iron Wind is pretty amazing given the Middle Earth roots of Iron Crown Enterprises and industry trends at the time.

With that said, the first and second parchment editions were a VERY stripped down version of the later 3rd version. While it did include the Priests Arnak and mention of the Unlife, there was no “Loremasters”, “Flows of Essence”, Navigators” or other elements that later defined the module series and ultimately Shadow World.

Front and Back Covers. The Iron Wind was published with 3 different covers: The B&W parchment, the “red” contrast parchment and the glossy paper green cover.

The parchment cover (top left pic above) depicts a mountainous terrain and a small citadel with a perspective of looking out of a small cave. It’s initialed “RB”, so I’m assuming that is Richard Britton, one of the ICE staff. The back cover is a large size Syrkakar Warrior also initialed “RB”.

The red parchment is a more fascinating scene. A (top right pic above), horned helm warrior twirls a morning star from a cliff edge while looking over a distance city–probably Syclak. Far in the distance a volcano is spewing an ash cloud and high above a red dragon is flying. There is so much dynamism in this art and once again captures the raw, gritty nature of The Iron Wind and early Rolemaster. It’s hard to say who the author is, but in the upper right border is a faint dotted PCF, so it appears that Pete Fenlon drew that cover!! This cover art was re-used in the third edition on page 23. The back cover is a colored Fenlon map of the area–interestingly it’s not an island, but a coastal region. This goes back to the Iron Wind being placed on the northern shores of Middle Earth.

The third edition had a full color picture done by Brian White in 1984. It shows 2 “barbarian” style characters fighting a demon that has seemingly burst from the ice of a frozen lake. A cool citadel is seen in the background. While I don’t like the Demon’s facial appearance, I think this is a great picture and I used it for inspiration in my game hook, buy phentermine uk online.

Maps. So let’s talk about maps. There is a definite progression of maps in these 3 products. Of course, Pete Fenlon’s map skills won ICE the Middle Earth license, and ME and Loremaster maps are some of the best ever published. The hand drawn “relief” style maps with key symbols are the GM’s best friend. Unfortunately, the 1st and 2nd  parchment edition of The Iron Wind lacked the more polished Fenlon elevation maps found in the later Loremaster modules. The two color regional map that was included was for a whole different coastal geography! In the first two parchment editions, the Mur Fostisyr wasn’t even an island. Instead, the area is a coastal region. (I believe it was meant to be a northern coastal area of Middle Earth).

Content. Both parchment editions have the same material, which again, is quite sparse compared to the final 3rd version. Basically these two versions detail 6 locations, a section on the Iron Wind and 4 cultures. There are a few maps in the middle of the book and some scattered supplementary info:  a weather chart on page 37, 2 small tables of herbs and poisons on page 43, food and lodging prices on page 47, and a  “master military chart” on page 55 called “Basic Warriors of the Mur Fostisyr”. So right there you can see the primal DNA of future ICE modules, both ME and SW.

Narrative. Almost all of the books narrative is given via a storytelling device by Elor Once Dark. While those parts were included in the 3rd edition, in the 1st & 2nd it’s the entire “voice” of the product. This gives the product a more distinct and raw feeling. It reminds me of the voice over narration found in Conan the Barbarian–but that movie came out in 1982 and this product is dated to 1980.

Languages. One thought on “naming conventions”. The Iron Wind  established a naming convention using word construction and consonant use that  lends itself to setting depth. Check out these place names found in the Iron Wind : A-Arnaar, Uda Tyygk, Aalk Gaath, Taurkytadl.  A mouthful certainly, but conveys a a sense of history and realism. We are used to this type of naming conventions from Terry’s subsequent work in Shadow World, but in 1980 it was unusual to see place names that were different from D&D standards: i.e. Greyhawk, Black Keep, Cross Fell, Hommlet etc.

In the first two parchment editions there is a small section on the Ky’taari. The third edition adds language notes on Syrkakar and expands the Ky’taari dictionary.  Later Loremaster and SW modules continued building upon this foundation with language notes on Iruaraic, Kugor and others.

Citadels and Cities. Let’s get to the “meat” of the module–cool floor plans of amazing citadels. This is an area where Terry really shines and the Iron Wind is no exception.  A couple of thoughts. First, all of the floor plans are “grid-less” (no grid paper background)–a significant different from D&D modules. This might be a subtle change, but lends a certain authenticity to the floor plans. Second, the Iron Wind established a more minimalist approach to room description. There are no “narrative boxes” and many of the room descriptions can be quite terse. For example: 16, 18. Offices. Of the chief librarian. Chairs? Desks? Luxurious? Who is to say! So while you have cool structures and floor plans, they leave a lot of unknowns for the GM to work out. Last thought–each citadel has a exterior drawing which is a great GM tool and helps with understanding the spatial aspects of a building or city.  It’s nice to see a exterior view actually match the floor plan!

The parchment editions had 6 citadels/cities, plus a map of Syclax. The 3rd edition had the 6 citadels, a newly designed Fenlon map of Syclax plus Tharg Jironak (Tower of the Astrologer).

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A-Arnaar. The High Temple of the Ky’taari. Parchment editions only had the lower hall layout. 3rd edition added the “upper hall”. There is a short narrative in the parchments that is expanded upon in the 3rd edition. Interestingly, both refer to the “master orb of the seeing stones of the Ryaani). Not sure if I missed who/what the Ryaani are, but this sounds like the basis for the Ilsari Seeing Stones established in later SW canon. Both had an exterior of the building, but I can’t tell who did the drawing.

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Kaldaraak-Vaar (Dawnwaters Edge). Interestingly, both parchments and 3rd edition refer to the “master orb of the seeing stones of the Ryaani. Not sure if I missed who/what the Ryaani are, but this sounds like the basis for the Ilsari Seeing Stones established in later SW canon.

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Uda Tyygk. One of my favorite RPG fortresses of all time! Not only is it a very “Bond Villian” style mountain lairs, it’s the home of the Udahir who fly giant birds. The floorplans were cleaned up from the parchment versions to the 3rd edition but none of them came with any floor plan key; instead the major areas were labeled on the map. The parchment versions did include one extra drawing of the “water entrance to the Uda Tyygk” that was left out of the final version.

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Taurkytaal. This is the fortress of the Demon-Lord Astaur. This is a great stand-alone fortress with clever features: teleport thrones, retractable bridges and a “elven seeing stone” and cool magic items. There was some small changes to the layout from the parchment to the 3rd edition; basically rooms #28 & #28 vaults were relocated. There is mentions of Ryykaar the Mage and Darath but no stats in the parchment editions but they are stat’ed in the 3rd edition NPC section.

One last item of note. At the end of the section there is a small  passage, “The Texts of Arduvaal of Vraniis”. It describes: “…and of four Pales were demons made, the first being the most strong and fierce, and the fourth the least in might”. For those familiar with RM, this was flipped with the 1st Pale being the weakest. This was changed for the 3rd edition.

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Aalk Gaath. Home of the “Dragon Lord”. Here, we have a major deviation between the parchments and 3rd edition. In the parchments this citadel is the Fortress of Dread and home to Muul Chort, the White Dragon. Obviously the Dragon Lord was changed to Oran Jatar in the later edition (and Shadow World. Confusingly, room #6 was left as “the forges of Muul Chort” in the 3rd edition. An oversight I presume. This is also the home to the Priest Arnak of Gaath and Athimurl so a pretty dangerous place!!!

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Var Ukaak. Let’s see, a Dragon Lords citadel, a Demon-Lords citadel and now a tower of the Susymog an Ordainer!!! This Mur Fostisyr sure is a dangerous place! There was additional rooms added in 3rd ed. and the treasury gold was reduced from 50,000 gp to 5,000!!! Oh, and that skull at the top of the tower?…glows with a red light that can be seen for miles.

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Tharg Jironak. This citadel was NOT included in the parchment editions and is the home of a ex-navigator. This is a very interesting place, with many “Lords of Essence” features like laen doors/panels, exotic marbles, mirror mazes, glass tubes that hold people in suspended animation. The tower is “ancient” and made using powdered stone and “huge molds and forms” and glazed giving it a obsidian appearance. The whole thing is odd, whimsical and very cool.

Art Work. The 3rd ed. is a much more complete and polished version of the original parchments and for the most part, contains everything in the earlier editions and expands upon it. There are however, a few pieces of art that never made it to the final version:

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So there you have it! Certainly the 3rd final version of the Iron Wind is superior in every way. It’s more professional, expanded with full stats, it has Fenlon’s colored elevation maps and a cool section of magic items in the back. However, the parchment editions have their own charm. The fortresses and layouts are among the best of their time, the cultures are unique and interesting and the bones of Shadow World are clear to see.

There is a ton of usable material in any edition. pdf’s are available to purchase at buy phentermine online india. A great value for $5.

Next deep dive…the “unusual” World of Vog Mur…





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One of the more dense and information rich sections of the Shadow World Master Atlas is the timeline. By the 3rd Edition of the Master Atlas, the timeline has reached 25 pages and would be much longer if it incorporated all the local and regional timeline material found in other SW books. Plus, the timeline is growing: since the original release of the SW Master Atlas Boxed set I believe the timeline has increased by at least 9-10 years (6045 to 6054 TE).

My recent buy phentermine pills uk about a definitive, final Master Atlas proposes that the dated timeline be removed to another channel. A few years back, my brother Matt (Vroomfogle) started the buy phentermine amazon; an online database that collected all the timelines and had various search filters.

In any event, the timeline is a rich resource for a GM, not only offering unlimited adventure hooks but providing endless opportunities to explore Kulthea in different times. Sprinkled throughout the time though are many unanswered questions, cool hints and vague references that Terry has yet to explain or explore in detail. One of my favorite:  the Xiosians.

The Xiosians were first mentioned in the original Master Atlas: Warrior-Priests that were servants of the Masters of Emer and rode flying magical chariots. In Emer I we got a few more pieces of the puzzle with several mentions:

Warrior-mages on huge steeds begin purging the wilds in central Emer, driving out the ubiquitous Gark and Lugrôki hordes. These knights are harbingers of thecoming of the Masters.

They rule through an order of warrior-mages (the Xiosians)

It is believed that the Changramai are disenchanted Xiosians who left
the service of the Titans (In fact, some are

Corruption spreads through the Xiosians as well.

I was always fascinated by these references and decided to flesh out a background for the Xiosians myself. So putting what few clues I had together…

  1. Warrior servants of God like beings
  2. Flying magical conveyances

…I thought this sounds like another group of mysterious warriors that fly on magical steeds and purge the wilderness: The Cloudlords of Tanara. I wanted to tie together a number of loose ends: the origins of the Changramai martial culture, ancient militant orders with ties to the Althans/Ka’ta’viir, mysterious warrior cults and the genetic origins of special warriors like the Cal-chah and Guarlu. I had an idea that tied them all back to the 1st Era.

The Althans and the Ka’ta’viir are primarily an advanced intergalactic imperial society. But there is also a strong oligarchy element of immensely wealthy merchant families. It’s not a leap to assume that both leaders and powerful “Houses” would have their own security force to provide defense, corporate espionage and personal protection. This is not an original idea. The Romans had their “buy phentermine adipex online“, the Emperor had hisbuy phentermine australia, and in Dune: every buy phentermine and topamax had it’s own army, formally independent from the buy phentermine at walmart‘s own military forces. (the Dune setting fit’s well with the Althan/Spacemaster/Kulthea dynamic).

As an highly advanced society, these personal guards would be genetically and biologically enhanced with superior speed, strength, healing etc. Ka’ta’viir and various Houses would want to customize their soldiers to their own aesthetic and design whims; perhaps based on distant racial lineage, or for practical purposes. These super-soldiers were mostly destroyed or scattered at the end of the 1st Era along with their Althan and Ka’ta’viir masters but remnants of them still remain. Some advanced genetic traits were passed down from individual survivors on Kulthea; operational bases were discovered with Xiosian equipment, fighting skills were passed down through many generations.

For me this was a good solution. Again, it ties up loose ends, fits well into canon for the most part and feels right. Here is a my material on the various “Xio Cadres” that ties into the Xiosians mentioned in the MA, Cloudlords, Changramai as well as others:

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Obviously, playing a pure Xio warrior or even a partially full blooded Xio could be unbalancing. But I incorporated 2 significant drawbacks for Xio: behavioral inhibitors against Ka’ta’viir and the inability to use Essence/increase succeptibility to Essence effects. Of course, a player with only a small amount of Xio ancestry would have less inhibitors but conversely would have less genetic benefits as well.

Finally, since Priest-King of Shade is languishing in development limbo I thought I would share three vignettes from the book. They deal with the Tor’lan, a race descended from the ancient Xio warrior caste.

Of the Tor’lan

…apparently the Kinn have traded with them for generations, but little is known of the Tor’lan, the Giants of the Sullen Mountains. Brutish and uncivilized barbarians they are called, and they seem to have little interest in lands or conquest—they are rarely seen, content in their high mountain retreats.

We were heading south along the Ember Road, an ancient trade route that winds precariously through the mountains. Our caravan must have been watched, for just a few moments after we made camp, figures stepped from the shadowed edge of the jungle. All three were imposing specimens: tall, broad and heavily muscled—their size reminiscent of the Zor or Myri of Jamain but their skin was dusky and their facial features seemed cruder. Dressed in furs and dark leathers, they were adorned with a variety of crude fetishes: skin inks, bone jewelry and metal armlets. Tokens were woven into their long black hair. As they approached our camp site I realized the scale of the trees behind them had skewed my perception: these men were giants, much larger than the Zor and perhaps approaching 8’ in height and weighing over 250 pounds. They stopped 10’ away, and I swallowed a brief feeling of unease. The three stood confident and relaxed, and while their hands were loose at their sides and far from the grips of the huge swords strapped to their backs, I had no doubts that they would draw swiftly with little provocation. After examining us for but a moment, one stepped forward and spoke a clear greeting in Korsi, the trade tongue common to these western lands. I had made contact with the Tor’lan.

The Journals of Arand de’Mel

Loremaster Field Report. 5898 TE.Excerpt p. 131


On my third day with the Tor’lan I was allowed to travel upland into the mountains escorted by several other warriors. The air was still humid but cooler under the jungle canopy and we moved swiftly and with few rests. I still had not learned much about these imposing warriors, but we had established rudimentary communication through Korsi, the trade language common along the Storm Seas. I was always a quick study and their tongue bore a strong resemblance to higher, loftier languages, reinforcing my suspicion that their culture was a remnant of something far more ancient.

We maintained a strong pace as our path steepened and got rockier—I was feeling pressed keeping up with my companions, but they barely seemed winded. At times our trail climbed almost vertically—without guidance I would have been challenged to navigate the route. After several hours of strenuous climbing we reached the edge of a broad plateau high in the Sullen Mountains. While the lip of the plateau was broken and worn, I could see that the plateau was dressed with enormous smooth paving stones. Some were cracked, broken or tilted, but their craftsmanship was unmistakable: this was the work of the Althans.

Loremaster Field Report. 5898 T.E. Excerpt p. 147


I sat in preparation on a warm paving stone of the plateau. Around me a dozen Tor’lan stood forming a wide circle, large powerful barbaric figures, seemingly elemental in their strength and stillness that they projected. I thought back to the simple instructions from my guide:  Prepare. Fight. Honor. The words seem ritualistic and I could only guess at their deeper intent and meaning. My opponent would be a youth, not yet a clan warrior but with some battle training. I secretly felt that they underestimated me, for they had not yet seen me fight. I had trained with the Bikal Sword Masters in Sel-Kai and learned the two weapon attack forms of the Duranaki. I had traveled with Changramai Monks and witnessed the battle forms of a Void Knight. I had been tested in combat numerous times. While physically imposing and intimidating, the Tor’lan seemed crude in their manner and styles. I was determined to be a gracious guest and fight at whatever my opponent’s skill.

The far side of the circle parted and a warrior stepped into the circle. Taller and lean from youth rather than heavily muscled, his tanned skin also had fewer tattoos than the warriors I had traveled with. His hair was braided into numerous shoulder-length tails and he wore only a simple grey hide breastplate and leggings. He held a long heavy bladed sword, though not as large as the back-sheathed swords the other massive warriors wielded. He was taller than I, perhaps by a hand but not overly so. His reach would be comparable and though he moved confidently, I felt my speed and skills would quickly overwhelm his slight advantages in size and strength.

I looked down at my weapons. I wielded a longsword in my right hand and a Loari parrying knife in my left. In fairness I thought I should drop the knife, but the young warrior’s heavier weapon would still be an advantage against my two blades.

I rose to my feet and walked slowly to the circle’s center while my opponent watched with dark eyes, his face expressionless and bland. Were he in the city streets of Sel-kai his only notable feature would be his unusual height. He nodded slightly and raised his sword high and to the side, an unusual guarding position for a long blade. Crossing my weapons I returned the nod. Without further delay I stepped forward and lunged with both blades, hoping to reach inside is guard. Before my lead foot had touched the ground, a precise blow to the side of my head knocked me sideways onto the ground. I hadn’t seen the warrior move but he must have struck with the pommel of his sword. I shook my head, pushed off the stone and considered the barbarian. He still stood as if he hadn’t moved while my own head was still ringing and my footing felt less sure. Crossing my blades, again I approached just outside of his reach. Wary of his speed, I would not make the same mistake twice. I spun, both blades turned in a flat arc, my longer blade carving a path toward his left side while my shorter blade was held higher to block any movement of the opposing sword. I was half way through my attack and I saw the warrior move—almost quicker than I could fathom. Stepping back and to the side, just avoiding the tip of my longsword, his left hand dropped from his sword grip and tapped my left shoulder. I felt a shock run through my arm and my hand involuntarily dropped the dagger as my fingers went numb. I was exposed, but the warrior made no counter-attack. My mind reeled for I had seen a similar move practiced by the Changramai elite!  After this there is not much to relate. The remainder of the battle was a blur: every one of my attacks was blocked or avoided, seemingly without effort. My movements seemed clumsy and slow compared to the graceful barbarian. For perhaps two or three minute we fought and finally, when I was covered in sweat and aching from carefully placed strikes, I stepped away from the center.

The circle was quiet and the surrounding warriors watched me: their expressions were inscrutable but I felt I had failed some test. Much later I learned the truth: the warrior I dueled was just a young student; his training had been measured in only a few years.

Not long after, I witnessed the full battle skills of an adult Tor’lan warrior…pray that they never have reason to go forth in anger or war…

Loremaster Field Report. 5898 TE. Excerpt p. 204

So can you incorporate Xiosians into your campaign? They may be a better alternative than having a player with Ka’ta’viir heritage, or may give a boost to a non-spell user fighter if they have some limited Xio ancestry. Or you can build a campaign around uncovering the Xio heritage that is imprinted in any number of cultures or organizations around Kulthea.

Certainly, the players could encounter an original Xio warrior; perhaps they were in chronogenic suspension. They might make a great ally against a Ka’ta’viir–they would be able to provide advice and assistance but couldn’t directly fight the Lord of Essence due to the genetic conditioning. Xio Cadres had both high tech equipment as well as ceremonial garb (like the Cloudlords kit) but many of the cadres consisted of very large warriors, so keep in mind that much of the equipment would not fit a smaller size player. It’s cool when they find 1st Era Battle Armor…only to realize they can’t work the neural interface and it’s just too large!


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From the earliest days of the buy phentramin-d uk, it’s been expected that comprehensive fantasy settings include a “Master Atlas” or a “Gazetteer” to set the tone and include fundamental information about the world. Nine years late, ICE introduced buy phentramin-d amazon.

The first Master Atlas set the stage for the new Shadow World line–an expansion of the original buy phentermine from mexico published between 1980-1984.  SW was now a professionally published product with a glossy presentation. The original boxed set included to books: the World Guide & Inhabitants Guide plus a poster size color map of the hemisphere. It was a great start to world building, but it never felt complete until combined with buy phentermine forum and buy phentermine for weight loss. Between those 3 products (all written by Terry Amthor) a GM could piece together a coherent and in depth profile of Shadow World augmented by the original Loremaster books (buy phentermine from uk, buy phentermine from canadian pharmacy & buy phentermine from australia). Since then, Terry has expanded SW Canon with 3 Emer regional books, buy phentermine germany, 2 city books (buy phentermine generic online & buy phentermine gnc) plus buy generic phentermine in NW Jaiman. In the queue are Wurilis (NE Jaiman) the final Emer regional book and a re-write of Jaiman. Once those are completed, GM’s and gamers have an extremely robust overview of the two “main” continents: Jaiman and Emer.

It’s difficult to say if Terry will ever be able to tackle a third (or more) continent in such a comprehensive way with multiple books, but no one could argue that there isn’t enough material for years or even decades of game play with existing Shadow World material. And even with all the current SW books, both Emer and Jaiman have plenty of room for new material, short adventures, city books  and smaller regional supplements.

However, despite 4 editions of the SW Master Atlas, these books are hardly comprehensive. “World” level information is often found scattered throughout the other regional SW books, important cultural information is left unaddressed and various topics could use more campaign level information. In Pt. 2 and Pt. 3 I covered a number of these items that could be included, but I thought I would print off the Table of Contents for my own “Master Atlas” to show what could be in new version. I actually have 40-50 more pages that I haven’t incorporated into the master file, but this one is 281 pages.

Click below to download my own “Definitive Master Atlas Table of Contents” :

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There has been endless speculation about adapting Shadow World to the RMU ruleset, but every year that goes by only makes the task of converting all the Shadow World books into the new format less and less likely. On top of that Terry is methodically going through older source books and updating them and adding new content still using the RM2 ruleset. A third iteration of that process seems hard to imagine.

So where does that leave a new, revised Master Atlas? Last spring I buy phentermine k28, but now with the Rolemasterblog having new readers and another year gone by in the RMU development process I thought I would revisit this topic.

To me, it seems unlikely  that SW will ever have a comprehensive reformat to fit the RMU rule set–that would be over a dozen books? But that doesn’t mean that there can’t be a final Master Atlas that creates a definitive baseline for Shadow World and any or all future projects. In my mind, the DMA (Definitive Master Atlas) would set SW Canon, tackle a lot of the unaddressed issues and become the road map for any third party books (if that ever occurs). Of course, as buy phentermine 37.5 k25 commented, you could also make the DMA system agnostic. To me, that’s a very interesting idea!!!

If you’ve followed my “buy phentermine lollipops” thread on the RM Forums, you may realize that many of those partial files are part of a much larger document–our own, in house, DMA we’ve been adding to for 30+ years. Our own book is around 350 pages and that doesn’t include charts, illustrations/art, graphics or any Flora/Fauna material. A strong pass-through edit and I’m fairly confident that a DMA could be 500 pages. Is that possible to publish or print in hard copy format? I personally have no idea, so please weigh in on that.

Ok, so what would a DMA include? There should be guidelines on what material qualifies as “world spanning”, “canon” or appropriate for a Master Atlas and not just a regional source book. Should it incorporate some of the material found in the original Gamemaster Law? The buy phentermine legally online was well received: although it was mostly collated content, the presentation, art and production value were topnotch. A definitive Master Atlas might only need 100-200 pages of new material, culling of 50-100 pages (timeline removed?) and the addition of 100 or so pages of material found in other source books that are better suited for a MA. I think much of the Powers could be incorporated into the DMA while information on the Iron Wind, Raven Queen or Silver Dawn should be more regional in nature.

What would be on your list for a Definitive Master Atlas?

  1. Should the ever changing timeline be removed and handled elsewhere?
  2.  Should there be a final Essence Flow & Greater Foci map of the hemisphere?
  3. What organizations  or content are “world-spanning” and what is “regional”.
  4. Is there any material in other SW books (canonical) that should be moved to a DMA?
  5. What topics or material should be included or expanded upon?
  6. Should a DMA be all encompassing or should it be a multi-book endeavor. For instance, it could be 3 parts: a MA, a Flora/Fauna supplement and a Gazetteer with a variety of maps and keys  that expands upon the geographical chapter in the current MA?
  7. A box set with hardcovers?
  8. A map supplement that has every map every printed for SW–new detailed maps of all the continents with key locations, some poster maps. Some enlarged city maps?
  9. Could this be a Kickstarter project to fund great artwork, mapmaking, a wiki  and project management?

Yes, there are already 4 versions of the Master Atlas, so is this even possible or worth discussing? I think the only issue is new content that would need to be written or approved by Terry. The rest, much like the Players Guide, would be editorial and organizational.

Any thoughts?