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The Great Craterby Andrew Theisen
In the dark years of the Great War, a meteor slammed directly into the Silver Sierras of Glantri. The principalities of Caurenze and Blackhill were almost devastated, as were numerous smaller dominions. Worse yet, within a year, the largest horde of humanoids seen in decades came tearing through the devastation from their caverns and homes in the neighbouring Broken Lands. Led by the mighty King Thar, the humanoids embarked on a campaign of terror in the beleaguered Glantri.
At its height, Thar's horde occupied most of southern Glantri, extending as far as the capital of Glantri City itself. After weathering a terrible plague, Glantri managed to rally its own forces enough to drive the horde back towards the Great Crater, where they were met by the forces of Darokin and its allies.
Yet even attacks by the powerful Heldannic Knights couldn't dislodge Thar's hordes from their new home in the Great Crater, however. Further, the humanoid situation seems to have stabilised in Glantri, as they have become somewhat legitimised under the reign of their new ruler Prince Kol.
As with most things in Glantri, however, appearances can be deceiving. Welcome to New Kolland and the lands of the Great Crater.
Geography of the Great Crater
The Great Crater is far from being the uniform geographic locale some cartographers have depicted it. It actually contains an astonishing variety of terrain, almost as extensive as its close neighbour, the so-called Broken Lands.
The tall mountains of the Silver Sierras and the Kurish Massif form the southern boundaries of the Great Crater. In some places, the devastation caused by the impact of the meteor and subsequent tremors resulting from the event have caused the mountains to collapse and become broken, rugged lands not unlike those found along the borders of the Broken Lands. In other areas, huge clouds of ash and dust left from the impact have accumulated in such massive quantities that they stretch as far as the eye can see. Such a build-up of ash has had a tremendous impact on the formerly fertile valley regions north of the Great Crater.
Within the Great Crater itself, the Red River, fed by runoff in the high mountains, forms a tremendous waterfall as it pours over the rim, landing thousands of feet below. There, it pours into the crater left by the impact of the meteor, forming Marrow Lake. The lake itself is putrid and dirty, full of ash that is picked up by the Red River as it makes its way southward. There is an almost perpetual cloud of steam in the air of the crater, making it difficult to see into it from above. The source of the heat is not entirely clear, but sages have suggested it is caused by either the still-cooling meteor, or the close proximity of a nearby lava flow to the east (kept from spilling into the crater by less than a mile of rock).
Though quite a lot of ash pits and rocky terrain covers the floor of the crater, the areas surrounding the lake are full of lush vegetation. Some curious nature of the terrain in the region makes it particularly receptive to harbouring new and unusual vegetal growth- primarily various types of fungi; possibly remnants of the growth magics used by the former Alphatian inhabitants of the region still exist in the soil.
The caverns surrounding the Great Crater are extensive and ancient, but were not a viable route of transport for raiding humanoids from the Broken Lands until the meteor impact, laying so deep below the mountains as they do. There is one large underground lake, fed by a tributary from Lake Amsorak, in Darokin. Vegetal growth abounds, as do new and heretofore unknown types of fauna. Additionally, there are many subterranean links both to the Broken Lands to the east, as well as to caverns leading further north into Glantri, and west below the mountains of Sind. As yet, very few have explored the extent of these subterranean highways, so it is unknown whether there may be intelligent inhabitants that have not yet been encountered.
Principality of New Kolland
Surface: 3,808 sq. miles (68 hexes) - note: this does not include subterranean area.
Population: 8,200 humanoids (total population includes only those tribes directly subservient to Kol)
Orcus Dominicus: 1,500
Net Income: Negligible
New Kolland, also called South Monsterland, is the home of the humanoids of the Great Crater. Despite the prince's best efforts, attempts to tax the populace have met with no gain. The primary source of income is a monthly tribute to the ruler of gains made from raiding and looting. As those gains are most often in non-monetary tender (cattle, stolen weapons and armour, etc.), New Kolland does not generate any appreciable amount of income to contribute to the crown. This does not bother the Council overmuch, as their main concern is that the humanoids are kept in some degree of control.
Recently, the Prince of New Kolland has been selling off mineral rights in the area, as well as issuing hunting permits (for the non-intelligent monsters in the area only) at considerable prices in an attempt to raise some form of viable income. The region is rich in mineral resources, but it is difficult to organise the humanoids to mine the area.
Tribes of New Kolland
Kolland: The tribe of Kolland (for which the principality is named) makes its home in the area surrounding Prince Kol's siege of Blackstone. The hilly terrain around the capital is similar to that of the Kollander's former home in the Broken Lands.
The Kollanders also live in the extensive caverns immediately below Blackstone, along the southwestern edge of the Great Crater. Their subterranean home is sufficiently far removed from those of other humanoids such that Kollanders are rarely disturbed by outside raids. The sole exception to this are the Trollburgers, who sometimes roam into Kolland by way of their caverns beneath the kobold lands.
The population of Kolland is primarily kobolds, with common orcs and gnolls being the two most prominent lesser races.
Orcus Dominicus: The tribe of Orcus Dominicus consists of the former members of Orcus Rex, in the Broken Lands. After having led the hordes of the tribe to Glantri, their leader King Thar seemingly abandoned them. This has led to some degree of resentment amongst the orcs towards their former ruler.
Currently, they occupy the subterranean caverns of the southeastern Great Crater, and the eastern edge of Marrow Lake. In the far east, their tunnels gradually rise and connect up with the subterranean regions of Orcus Rex, in the Broken Lands. They share a subterranean lake with their neighbours, the Trollburgians, which is fed by a tributary of Lake Amsorak.
Orcus Dominicans get along surprisingly well with the Kollanders and their aboveground neighbours, the Ogrelords. Border wars with Goblinians along Marrow Lake are not uncommon, and the Dominicans are constantly on guard against their Trollburgian neighbours.
The population of Orcus Dominicus is mainly common orcs, with lesser populations of kobolds and gnolls.
Goblinia: The tribe of Gobland resides almost entirely underground, occupying the northern end of the Great Crater in caverns beneath Ohr'r and Tombstone. The only surface regions they lay claim are the ash pits and rocky wastes that surround the northern portions of Marrow Lake.
Goblinians get along well with their bugbear cousins above them, but often find themselves at odds with the tribe of Orcus Dominicus, their neighbours to the east, and the trolls of Trollburg to the south, who like to roam the marshlands. They are sufficiently far removed from the hated Kollanders that clashes between the two tribes are rare. Skirmishes with Shadow Elf troops in the eastern caverns near Orcus Rex are common.
The population of Goblinia consists almost exclusively of goblins and bugbears, though hobgoblins are not uncommon.
Ogrelords: The Ogrelords are a loose confederacy of remnants of the tribes of Ogremoor, South Gnollistand, Hobgobland, and Red Orcland. As their respective tribal leaders broke up the hordes in anticipation of conquests elsewhere (ie, Alebane and Hutai-Khan), or for a mass migration (ie, Hool and Nizam-Pasha), those hordes that opted to remain in the region were eventually forced together out of necessity. Other, stronger tribes took over the surrounding subterranean lands, and the hordes had to learn to cooperate in order to maintain their ground.
The hordes of the Ogrelords occupy the caverns along the eastern rim of the Great Crater, and often emerge into the hills of southern Glantri to stage raids. Their cavern system eventually slopes down and connects with the subterranean regions of Ogremoor, in the Broken Lands.
They get along amiably with the humanoids of Orcus Dominicus, who occupy the caverns below them, as well as with the bugbears of Ohr'r- though the bugbears and Ogrelords sometimes raid one another during slow months. Encounters with Shadow Elves in the caverns near Ogremoor are infrequent, but their greatest enemies are the Hill Giants and Bargda of New Threat, who have made repeated attempts to force the hordes of the Ogrelords to work for them.
Virtually any sort of humanoid can be found amongst the population of this disparate tribe.
Trollburg: The trolls of Trollburg, are a recent addition to the tribes of the Great Crater. Having mostly remained in the Broken Lands during the Great War, they were driven out of the region by Shadow Elves seeking to regain their former city of Aengmor (c. 1012 AC). Unwanted by most of the other humanoids, they managed to find themselves a home deep beneath the caverns of Kolland, with access to the steamy, marshy areas surrounding Marrow Lake.
In their opinion, they get along well with all the other tribes of the Great Crater. In actuality, they are strongly disliked by just about everyone else, due to the numerous raids staged by the trolls on neighbouring lands. The trolls don't see anything wrong with it though. They tend to be very cooperative in any sort of joint humanoid activity, which is the one reason Kol tolerates their presence. The trolls have not yet encountered the Shadow Elves in their new home, but given its proximity to subterranean Shadow Elf territory, it is only a matter of time...
The population of Trollburg consists almost exclusively of trolls, though one may occasionally chance upon a member of another humanoid race in their caverns. In such cases, the individual is virtually guaranteed to be one of two things- a spy for another tribe, or dinner for the trolls. Sometimes both at once.
Surrounding Regions of the Great Crater
Tombstone- pop. 1,500 humanoids, plus unknown numbers of undead; includes subterranean regions.
The town of Lizzieni, in the former Principality of Caurenze, was greatly damaged during the meteor strike of 1006 AC. The town's Thyatian inhabitants, fleeing both the massive ash clouds and the humanoid invasions of later years, completely abandoned their homes, mostly fleeing northwest into the dominions of Castelbianco and Verazzano.
Today, the town is populated completely by humanoids- predominantly thouls and hobgoblins- and undead, who have been rampant in the region since the meteor strike. The thouls, by far the most numerous of the town's inhabitants, are able to keep the undead in some degree of check, through their shamans and through undead hunts (feasting on corporeal undead, such as zombies and ghouls). While the Council of Princes debates on what to do with the town, demands for clerics in the surrounding regions (notably Castelbianco), are on the rise.
The thoul shaman Al-Nahmi rules the renamed town of Tombstone from the ruins of Circus Lizzieni. The quakes caused by the impact of the meteor opened up tunnels beneath the colosseum that run far beneath Glantri itself.
The thouls often war with their neighbours in the town of Ohr'r, mostly in the subterranean areas. They have little regular contact with the other humanoids of the region, though two potential Goblinian usurpers have begun to make overtures of alliance towards the thouls.
Ohr'r- pop. 1300 humanoids including belowground terrain; approximately 600 live in the town of Ohr'r itself, along with 200 humans)
In the years following Thar's invasion of the Great Crater, the humanoids managed to control much of the lands of Glantri- almost to the city itself. When Glantri was finally able to push the humanoids back into the crater, the former town of Volnay remained firmly under the control of bugbears led by Chief Ohr'r. Since then, Ohr'r has renamed the town in his own honour, and the tribe of Bugburbia has emigrated from the Broken Lands to the town and tunnels beneath it.
Constable Ohr'r has renewed his ties to the Fellowship of the Pouch (the thieves guild of Glantri), with the result that the town of Ohr'r has become a popular haven for mercenaries and persons of ill repute seeking employment with the underworld element of Glantri. For this reason alone, the town has gained a semi-legitimate status in the realm. Humanoids (primarily bugbears and goblins) are the main inhabitants, although the numbers of humans are on the rise.
The old bugbear lives most of the year aboveground, these days, in his 'palace' (the former city hall). Meanwhile, belowground, younger bugbears plot to wrest control of the tribe of Bugburbia from him, though no individual has yet risen to prominence.
Ohr'r maintains no diplomatic contact with New Kolland, much to Prince Kol's chagrin, though he still has ties with his cousins in Goblinia. The bugbears despise the necromantic practices of the thouls to their northwest, and are often in conflict with them.
New Threat- pop. 200; 70 Bargda, 130 Hill Giants
In 1006, a large warband of hill giants tore through the southern lands of Glantri. They ransacked the Viscounty of Nathrat, which was still recovering from the ravages of the meteor. They were unusually organised, led as they were by a band of Bargda, who had apparently been living for decades in the high mountain reaches. Lord Ezechiel Naramis and his elvish minions were killed almost to a man, and the giantish races took up residence in the ruins of his keep.
Renamed New Threat (possibly a perverted humanoid pronunciation, though the appellation is well earned), the Bargda continue to direct their hill giant minions from their new capital. Worse still, they have managed to outfit themselves with the armour worn by Naramis' army- armour that had been forged out of a mysterious anti-magical ore that he had discovered in the southern hills near Glantri. It is fortunate that he was too paranoid to tell anyone where this ore lay hidden, or the denizens of New Threat might be even more formidable than they are.
The elvish armour was too small for their giantish bodies, and so in typical humanoid fashion, they wear the armour piecemeal. The result is that they have varying degrees of magical resistance, depending on which race is encountered (the Bargda keep the best bits for themselves). A typical encounter will yield the following percentages of Anti-Magic:
Anti-Magic Percentages: Bargda- (1d4) x 10%
Hill Giants- (1d2) x 10%
(Note: if playing PC humanoids, as detailed in GAZ10, award an armour type/location x 50%; ie, an arm piece yields 5% AM, as do two knee pieces).
The giants of New Threat do not ally themselves with any of the other humanoids (despite joining in the Ethengar/Glantri war, which was purely for their own enjoyment). They have recently made attempts to dominate their nearest neighbours, the Ogrelords. They are a serious threat in the region, doubly so due to their magical resistance.
Celedyl- pop. 250
The new barony of Celedyl is the southernmost of Glantri's dominions. Established on the ruins of the former Camp Huledain, its ruler Qenildor Erewan has built it into a fortified community since the days of the Great War.
Most of the population consists of Qenildor's army- fellow elves who joined his guerrilla war against the humanoids. As typically happens, a large support group of families and profiteers has followed the band and set up with them. Celedyl also provides a sanctuary to the halfling renegades who followed ex-sheriff Jaervosz Dustyboots to Glantri in pursuit of Ludwig von Hendriks.
Qenildor maintains close contacts with his mother, the Princess Carlotina Erewan, and his recent induction into the nobility has only strengthened their bond. They have already begun to coordinate efforts between his small army and her troops in Fort Huledain. He has also asked, and been granted permission, to have a daughter of the Erendyl Tree of Life set up in Celedyl.
Curiously enough (perhaps related to the mysterious magical growth legacy of the Blackhill people), the land around Celedyl has been quick to support vegetation. Qenildor plans to initiate a reforestation project whenever he gets the resources he needs to do so.
Silverston- pop. 60
The ruined tower of Silverston now is home to one of Kol's chief advisers, the goblin Broknag the Sly. After ingratiating himself with the kobold by providing him with the military skills of Ludwig von Hendriks, Broknag was granted permission to have the tower. He spends most of his time therein, with his clan. He has recently stumbled across a vault belonging to the tower's former owner, Prince Volospin Aendyr, that survived the devastation wrought by the meteor. Craving whatever treasures might lay within, he has been seeking a means to bypass the magical wards guarding the vault, but to no avail.
The region surrounding Soth-Kabree is home to numerous griffons, remnants and descendants of the famed griffon riding force of the former Countess, Aliana Nyraviel. Their presence has been noted as a possible problem to open up a new trade road from Eriadna through the southern barony, and into Darokin (in order to bypass the Shadow Elf controlled Broken Lands).
The keep itself is rumoured to be haunted, though tales vary as to what may lurk within the keep. Stories of tentacled, other-planar creatures, to an ancient Nithian sorcerer have surfaced, as have reports that the voice of the former countess herself has been heard wailing through the night. As yet, no one has mounted an expedition to find the truth of any of these rumours.
Fort Huledain- pop. 900
Fort Huledain- formed in 1010 AC as a means of kerbing the humanoid menace. Carlotina Erewan was voted Viceroy of the fort in a narrow decision between her and Brannart McGregor. Carlotina's 1st and 2nd banners stay here, where they are tied up between stifling undead raids in the Thyatian counties to the northwest, and the giant menace of New Threat to the south. In between, they are also forced to deal with the occasional humanoid raid. Duty at Ft. Huledain is very dangerous, indeed.
Sirecchia- pop. 60
Ruins are all that remain intact in the once proud Viscounty. The Thyatian villages that filled it are abandoned, mostly burned and ransacked or shattered by the tremendous quakes that the meteor generated. Some few Thyatian families have returned to the region since fleeing during the Great War, but none are located within miles of the former capital, the Manor Sirecchia.
Within the tower, which still stands whole and erect (if a bit unkempt and overgrown with vegetation), lives the sole occupant and ruler of the Viscounty, Prince Innocenti di Malapietra. A shell of his former self, he has all but abandoned the few subjects he has left, leaving it to the village council to provide a spokesperson to the Parliament.
Eriadna- pop. 6,000
Eriadna provided a haven for Alphatians fleeing the destruction of Blackhill, as well as some Thyatians from the Principality of Caurenze, though not for long. Shortly after the impact, humanoids laid siege to the town for months. Though never fully conquering it, the town was severely pillaged and looted, and the population, which had risen dramatically, was reduced nearly to the levels it was before the Great War.
Today, Eriadna is still recovering. The town boasts two walls- one inner wall that had always been present; and one outer wall (still under construction) to protect those areas that had developed since the days following the founding of the town. The recent founding of Fort Huledain has been a boon to the inhabitants, as they receive a great deal more protection than before. Yet still do the Eriadnans look over their shoulder, fearful that the humanoids might return in force...
Corran Keep- pop. ?
South of the Great Crater, on the Darokin side of the border, stands the solitary Corran Keep. Long abandoned by any human occupants, there is nevertheless strange nocturnal activity around the fortification. The humanoids avoid this area, as they are frightened away by the structures eerie phosphorescent glow in the evening.
Saints and Scoundrels of the Great Crater
Al-Nahmi, shaman of Thanatos and chief of Tombstone. (Th 14/Sh 9; Th 9Sh- S 15, I 10, W 16, D 9, Cn 17, Ch 13)
Shortly after Thar led his legions out of the Broken Lands, in caverns far below, the thouls stirred. Driven by their shaman, Al-Nahmi, they roused themselves from their centuries of idleness and followed in the wake of the orc-king's legions. Though normally despised by other humanoids, the thouls were welcomed as comrades in arms against the hated Glantrians.
Al-Nahmi led her people to the abandoned town of Lizzieni, where they remain to this day. There they prosper in the caverns and undead haunted hills of the former Principality of Caurenze.
She is a follower of Thanatos, and seeks to spread his entropic ways among the surface world. She has few ties with any of the other humanoid leaders, save for the two goblin princes, Wart and Throng, who have made overtures of alliance with her recently.
Blackie, Henchman of Ohr'r. (Bu 12/W 3; Bu 9F- S 15, I 12, W 9, D 18, Cn 10, Ch 8).
Ohr'rs right hand bugbear is descended from a group of Ursus Bipedis Oriensis that were brought to Glantri many years ago at the behest of one of its nobles. Blackie (whose name, translated from Ochalean means, literally "Black Death"- Blackie is his nickname), served as a slave labourer in the gold mines of Belcadiz until the invasion of Glantri, when he and many of his kinsmen freed themselves and joined their humanoid cousins in their raids.
Since then, the enigmatic figure has risen to prominence amongst the bugbears of Ohr'r. The tall, wiry, black and white bugbear cuts an exotic picture even amongst his kin, and the rumours of his mysterious mystical practices are often whispered about in hushed tones in the bars of Ohr'r. The legend of his single-handedly (and weaponlessly) taking down a Glantrian patrol during the war only add to his mystique.
Blackie handles administrative duties for Constable Ohr'r (such as they are among humanoids), and seems to be ever present at his chief's side. It is supposed that Ohr'r is grooming him to be his successor, rather than one of the chief's many lazy whelps. Regardless of the truth of this rumour, there is little doubt but that Blackie will be the next leader of Ohr'r. He has already permanently removed a number of upstarts who would be king- without the knowledge of Constable Ohr'r.
Broknag the Sly, Adviser to Prince Kol, cleric of Wogar. (Go 10/8; Go 10T/8Sh- see PWA 1012)
Broknag wormed his way into Kol's graces by presenting the kobold with Ludwig von Hendriks, his current military adviser. Since then, the goblin has used his influence to garner arcane secrets for himself, notably by taking control of the late Prince Volospin Aendyr's ruined manor. He has also attempted (unsuccessfully thus far) to worm his way into various legitimate sorcerer's guilds and organisations in Glantri. He hopes to utilise such magical knowledge to advance the cause of the humanoids of the Great Crater, or at least help put them on a more equal footing with the rest of Glantri.
Broknag is strongly dedicated to the humanoids of the Great Crater and to Kol (in that order), and thus is greatly disturbed by rumours he has heard about the Black Eagle's discontent with the current state of affairs...
Bruun Halfwit, son of Kano Arrow's Whisper, (aka Simm of the Grasping Dark). (Go C25; Go P17 of Thanatos- S 13, D 8, Cn 14, I 8 (13), W 6 (18), Ch 10 (12). Statistics in parentheses are those of Simm in Bruun's body. Note that Simm is unique in his ability to surpass Goblin racial level limitations, and should be treated exactly as a human cleric/priest.)
Like his father, Kano Arrow's Whisper, Bruun is a hulking figure of a goblin. As a child, he often came to the aid of his cousin, Throng Cracktooth, when the other goblins would taunt and beat him. Between Bruun's might and Throng's brains, no task seemed beyond the two goblins, and they quickly rose to positions of influence in their horde.
Their relationship was such that, upon Throng's delvings into the secrets of their fathers, Bruun happily and heedlessly followed his cousin into what would ultimately be their ignominious end.
The Immortal Thanatos, intrigued by the cousin's investigations, Magic Jarred the souls of his deceased servants, the Blood Brethren (see HWA1-3) into the bodies of the two young goblins. Then he released his minions into Glantri, to wreak chaos and misery upon that hated land.
Currently the cleric Simm of the Grasping Dark possesses the body of Bruun. Together with his brother Koresh Teyd, he works to usurp the rulership of the humanoids of the Great Crater from its current batch of leaders. To this end, Simm has made contact with Al-Nahmi and her thouls, also followers of Thanatos. He also uses his powers and influence as Bruun Halfwit to convince the Goblinians that the time of Doth is past, and that new blood is needed to restore the goblins to their glory. He has noted, with wary eyes, Koresh Teyd's interest in the affairs of the Magocracy of Glantri.
Chokk Trollgrinder, Chief of the Ogrelords. (Og 9; Og 9F- S18, I 9, W 7, D 12, Cn 16, Ch 9).
Originally from the Orclands, Chokk left to join the Legion while still a youth, eventually becoming one of Thar's right hand men. When his former commander deserted his troops, he loyally gave his allegiance to the apparent successor, Prince Kol. His soldierly discipline served him in good stead when he was selected to serve with the Black Eagle in training Kol's horde. The Black Eagle was so impressed with the ogre that he suggested Chokk be chosen to whip the unruly hordes of the eastern hills into shape. Kol agreed and, with some assistance from the Prince and his military adviser, Chokk became chief of the new tribe of the Ogrelords.
Chokk maintains regular diplomatic contact with Kol, to whom he has sworn his allegiance. As long as Kol remains in power, the kobold will have the services of the unambitious ogre. The ogre's control over the hodgepodge of hordes he commands is threatened by the denizens of New Threat, and he has appealed to Kol for assistance. He doesn't care overmuch for the Black Eagle, whom he resents losing command of the legion to.
Doth, King of Goblinia. (Go 15; Go 8- see GAZ10)
Doth was overjoyed at the death of his wife, Yazar, in 1010 AC- especially since it was the first assassination attempt to succeed against her bombastic majesty! He didn't have long to gloat, however, as his tribe fell to the military might of Kol's hordes shortly thereafter. Even the eventual capitulation to the kobold's rule by his hated rival Thar couldn't please Doth for long.
Since then, the goblin king has brooded in his cavernous home, taking out his frustrations on his subjects and his orcish neighbours. His advisers resent him and feel he is responsible for their current plight, as the loss of Yazar's military genius was devastating to their war with the kobolds. Still fearful of their liege's rage, however, they simply content themselves to wait for the old goblin's impending death.
Giovanni di Malapietra, 2nd Circle Earth Elementalist. (Wraith, HD 9**/9MU)
Brother to Innocenti di Malapietra, Giovanni was slain during the events of the Great War. Like many of the inhabitants of the region impacted by the meteor, he arose from death, his malignant spirit returning in the form of a powerful wraith. Still endowed with his magical abilities, he quickly gathered an army of undead to his side, and attacked Manor Sirecchia, where his hated brother still lived, unaffected by the meteor.
Though his army was destroyed- along with a number of his undead relatives enlisted to his cause-the attack was sufficient to drain much of Innocenti's strength and drive him further towards madness. The vengeful Giovanni would have rallied another strike, but for the misfortune of crossing paths with the thoul shamaness Al-Nahmi. Her clerical abilities enabled her to control the wraith, and he currently serves the thouls in Tombstone, often using his Earth Elementalist abilities to expand and modify their subterranean homes.
He senses that Al-Nahmi is barely able to hold him in check, and constantly plots for the day when her control over him slips. That, and a desire to destroy Innocenti di Malapietra are all that drive this evil undead.
Gorgath, the bargda ruler of New Threat. (16 HD Bargda- see Creature Catalogue)
Though larger and more ferocious than most of his kind, Gorgath shares his race's hatred of almost everything not bargda. He led his people down from their mountainous homes when the meteor impacted, determined that humans had caused the disaster. They took their revenge on the elvish viscounty of Nathrat, then joined in the raiding of Thar's humanoids. Since then, they have consolidated their control over their lowland homes, and brought giantish hordes in the area under their wing. Now they carry out a reign of terror over the hills of southern Glantri, upon both human and humanoid alike.
Meanwhile, Gorgath hopes to include the ogrish races (and perhaps the trolls) in his dominion, and eventually carry out his schemes of revenge and destruction against the entire Glantrian populace.
Innocenti di Malapietra, Viscount of Sirecchia, High Master of Earth Elementals, Former Prince of Caurenze and Viceroy of Ylourgne. (MU 17; H 13W- see GAZ3, PWA 1010-1012, GKoM)
Thought dead following the impact of the meteor in 1006 AC, the former Prince of Caurenze resurfaced years later, as he aided the sinister Dolores Hillsbury in a plot to assassinate Prince Jaggar's wife. Though his title of Viscount was restored to him, his influence was a mere fraction of what it once was. That, combined with hauntings Sirecchia Manor by his deceased relatives, has driven the already paranoid Innocenti into the depths of madness. Today, he rarely ventures forth from his home, even to participate in Parliamentary procedures. It is only a matter of time before he does something rash...
Jaervosz Dustyboots, former Sheriff of Seashire. (Hf 8; Hf 8F/9T- see GAZ8, PWA 1010-1012, Joshuan's Almanac)
Jaervosz Dustyboots, a longtime foe of the Black Eagle Baron, has come to the lands of the Great Crater in hopes of bringing von Hendriks to justice. Having abandoned his title of Sheriff, he acts without the legal jurisdiction of the Five Shires, but with his people's hopes and support nevertheless. He has recently taken up with Qenildor Erewan, with whom he has discovered a common, if not entirely identical, purpose. Both men see the Black Eagle as a key figure in the humanoids' organisation, and are working together to achieve their goals. At the same time, the two are becoming fast friends, seeing qualities in one another that are very similar.
Khorguul, chieftainess of Orcus Dominicus. (Or 12; Or 9F- S 14, D 14, Cn 11, I 13, W 9, Ch 17.)
Khorguul nurses a strong hatred towards her distant relative, Thar. He killed her father during his bid for rulership of Orcus Rex, back in the Orcwars of 975 AC. In the years since then, she has grown to a position of power in the tribe, plans for revenge ever-present in her mind. When Thar bowed down before Kol in 1010 AC, the much impressed Khorguul offered her assistance and that of her horde to the kobold. The two of them worked to gradually dominate the other hordes in the region, and Khorguul rose to become the chieftain of the entire (renamed) tribe of Orcus Dominicus.
She is wholly loyal to Prince Kol, and between his kobolds and her orcs, the two have managed to keep the hordes of the Great Crater in some degree of control. She has heard of Thar's efforts to the far east, and keeps a watch for the day when he might return...
Kol XIV, Prince of New Kolland, Viscount of Blackstone, Viceroy of the Great Crater, King of the tribes of South Monsterland, High Doge of Kol. (Ko 26/ Wo 5; Ko 7Wd- see GAZ10, PWA 1010-1012, Joshuan's Almanac, GKoM)
The ambitious Kol managed to attain his current status due to the influence of powerful allies, but the tenuous nature of those alliances are beginning to show. His chief ally, Dolores Hillsbury (aka the Night Dragon, Synn) has begun to lose her sway in the political arenas of Glantri, and his advisers- notably the Black Eagle- are starting to play out their own agendas... which may or may not involve the kobold ruler. Thus far, his charismatic presence and position with the Council of Princes has allowed him to keep hold of his power, but that may not be enough. Unlike his predecessor, King Thar, Kol doesn't have the dominating personality that can keep other humanoid leaders in line. Together with his friend General Zar (and later with the Black Eagle) Kol's charismatic wheedling combined with his allies' military might was enough to influence the humanoids. Without the Black Eagle's strength, Kol may find himself gobbled up by the hordes he rules.
He maintains diplomatic ties with most of the humanoids of the Great Crater region, and despises those that refuse to acknowledge his authority. He recently hit upon the tactic of issuing bounties on the heads of his rivals- under the guise of legal 'hunting licenses' for adventurers. He is well aware of the Black Eagle's superiority complex, and is not blind to Ludwig's practice of hiring human officers to command the legion.
Ludwig von Hendriks, the Black Eagle, Military Adviser to Prince Kol, Commander of the Legion. (F 16; 13F- see GAZ1, PWA 1010-1012, Joshuan's Almanac, GKoM)
The former Karameikan baron has been hiding out in the Great Crater since 1011 AC, when he was rescued from the Five Shires by Broknag the Sly. Since that time, he has used his keen military mind (he worked with numerous humanoid hordes during his reign as a Karameikan baron) and contacts to train and supply the humanoid hordes of the Great Crater. Though far from the most efficient fighting force, they have benefited greatly from his leadership- most notably the well disciplined (for humanoids) kobolds. His efforts have been helped by the aid of his lieutenants, most veterans of Thar's Legion.
He chafes under the rule of Prince Kol, however, viewing the kobold and his humanoids as inferior beings. The loss of his barony in Karameikos, combined with his current state, has severely embittered the man; the fact that non-magic users cannot achieve nobility in Glantri has only strengthened this feeling.
Following his efforts during the Glantri-Ethengar war, he has achieved a notoriety among the Glantrian populace, and a degree of hero worship. He has recently been approached by the Followers of the Claymore, an underground movement decrying the magocracy. What ends he hopes to achieve by an alliance with them is unclear, but with the Black Eagle's reputation for double-dealing and treachery, it can't be good.
Morphail Gorevitch-Woszlany, Prince of Boldavia, Baron of Igorov, Viceroy of Tchernovodsk, High Master of Necromancy. (M 28 and Nosferatu; H 19W(n)- see GAZ3, PWA 1010- 1012, Joshuan's Almanac, GKoM)
The dread lord of Boldavia has taken an interest in the region of the Great Crater, though he has kept it hidden, using his usual subtlety. Ever since the events of the war, the region south of Glantri has been ripe with necromantic activity- an area that the nosferatu noble sees as his domain of control alone!
For the moment, Morphail simply observes events in the area, not interfering. He views the undead-hungry thouls as a source of possible irritation for him, though a minor one. Mostly, he sees the area as a possible place for his expansionistic tendencies. More undead nobles under his control would help him consolidate his silent reign on Glantrian power... if only something could be done about all the clerics down there...
Ohr'r, Constable of Ohr'r. (Bu 16; Bu 10- see GAZ10)
The ageing Ohr'r has taken to his new roles as constable and guildmaster of the Ohr'r branch of the Fellowship of the Pouch as if born to them. He spends most of his time counting through his enormous profits, and leaving the delegation of leadership to his assistant, ?. His only real concern is why his good friend, Prince Jaggar von Drachenfels, refuses to return any of his messages (Jaggar was instrumental in gaining Ohr'r his position as leader of the tribe of Bugburbia).
Qenildor Erewan, Baron of Celedyl. (E10;E 9F/8W- see GAZ3, GKoM)
Sire Qenildor Erewan is the newest member of the Glantrian nobility, having been awarded a barony in late 1015 AC. Located on the site of the former Camp Huledain, Qenildor named his barony after his long lost father, Celedrin. Ever since his father's disappearance during a raid into the Broken Lands, Qenildor has nursed a hatred for the humanoids. His feelings have grown ever stronger in recent years, as his people suffered the most under the humanoid raids of 1007 AC.
After fighting them as a renegade for years, he has finally decided to try fighting them within the confines of Glantrian law as well, by using his baronial influence. Unusually impatient for an elf, he is attempting to take a longer term view of things. Doubtless his burgeoning friendship with the halfling Jaervosz Dustyboots is colouring his attitude.
Throng Cracktooth, son of Udan Axe-Thrower, grandson of Yazar grandson of Yazar (aka Koresh Teyd). (Goblin MU25; Goblin W/Nec 17- S 8, D 13, Cn 7, I 14 (18), W 12 (13), Ch 9 (10). Statistics in parentheses apply to Koresh Teyd in Throng's body. Note that Throng/Koresh is unique in his ability to surpass normal goblin racial level limitations- to progress as a wizard at all, in fact- and should be treated in all ways as a human magic user of the same level.)
Prince Throng shares the canniness of his father, Udan Axe-Thrower. The slightly built young goblin was often beaten by his peers, one such incident resulting in the broken tusk that earned him his epithet. Throng studied all he could of his legendary father's illustrious (if short lived) exploits amongst the goblins of the Broken Lands. His interest was only heightened upon the advent of the migration to Glantri, the last known location of his father (see HWA1: Nightwail). Making contact with friends of his father's, he began the journey down a long, dark path that would ultimately claim his very soul.
Dark investigations carried out by Throng and his cousin, Bruun, resulted in the Immortal Thanatos capturing their souls and replacing them with the reincarnated spirits of his greatest living servants. the Blood Brethren. Much as their fathers before them, Throng and his cousin were doomed to be pawns of a much greater evil.
Today, Throng is wholly possessed by the spirit of Koresh Teyd, also known as the Nightkiller. A powerful mage, Koresh Teyd is slowly using his powers and charisma to undermine King Doth's authority amongst Goblinians, so that he and his brother Simm can take control of the goblins (and ultimately, the humanoids) of the Great Crater, and issue in a new reign of terror in the Known World.
King Doth hardly suspects the weakly Throng capable of such a feat, and thus Koresh Teyd's work proceeds apace. Seeing the wokan Kol acknowledged as a legal ruler in Glantri, the more powerful Nightkiller is intrigued by the possibility of attaining his own dominion in the Principalities. Such an event would undoubtedly cause friction between himself and his cleric brother, Simm...
Among the many creatures found in the Great Crater region, there are some that are unique or unusual to the area.
Ursus Bipedis Oriensis
Average Size: 6' + d20 inches.
Fitness (d6): 1-3: Skinny
Long black fur with bands of white; face white with black around the eyes, giving the appearance of wearing a mask. Favour long, kimono style Ochalean clothing. Often practice strange, mystical martial arts. Nomads of the hills and forests of Ochalea.
Spitting Worm (AC 6; MV 90'/30'; HD 6; Atk 1 spit; Dmg 2d8 spit or 2d4 bite; Spit: Save vs. Breath Weapon for 1/2 Dmg). See PWA 1012.