Atlas   Rules   Resources   Adventures   Stories       FAQ   Search   Links

Locations from the Lost Valley Region

by Geoff Gander

I actually did provide a few ideas for the numbered locations on the map (link is in Thorf's article); although I will expand and revisit them here:

Niscosenia (1) was a nation I had had every intention of developing - and actually did in fits and starts - but never carried through as far as I had wanted. That is being rectified to some extent now (stay tuned), but I *will* say that while some details as originally laid out in the Vaults may be superseded by what I'm writing now, the core of the nation will be the same - that is, its people are descended from fallen Lhomarrian colonies in the area.
I would keep the gnomish cities (2-4) as they are - that is, not Earthshakers - but I would expand this a bit to try to tie them to the ice gnomes mentioned on the Hollow World migration map. Very little (if anything) has been written about them, but I would work out why they remained stationary while their cousins moved to mobile settlements. This is a largely peaceful relationship between them and Niscosenia - occasional trade and whatnot.
Arnath (5, now named on the map) is populated by lupins - which makes more sense given the material that has since been written by Bruce Heard and others - but there is a reason why they live on an island. I would also make (6) part of the realm, and this is possibly their port or window to the outside world, where foreigners are actually allowed to go. The island itself is largely off-limits to outsiders, and most Arnathians know (and care) very little about the affairs of the mainland. Arnath is advanced in some areas, barbaric in others....
(7) would still be a great gnomish or lost world settlement - basically whatever the GM wants to drop in. Go wild, folks!
The Varellyan ruins are as depicted in Voyages of the Princess Ark - no change there - while the mysterious ruins could be anything you want them to be. Varellyan or Lhomarrian would be the best guesses.
Other details - The Thyatians visiting the region in AC 1019 (see the Almanac) named the river entering the Lost Valley itself the Latus River. However, the Niscosenians have their own name for it - Gilcariss (a derivation of the old Lhomarrian "Gilcarith", meaning "honoured river"), whose headwaters are near (3). There are also important ruins at the mouth of the river to the north of the volcano, but I shouldn't say more just yet...
Were I to add anything to this map, it would be the Lhomarrian ruins of Erkalion and Thallios, both of which have now since been placed. Erkalion would be at the mouth of the river 2 hexes west of Arnath, while Thallios would be 1 hex north and 1 northwest of the volcano on the coast. On an 8-mile hex map there would of course be sufficient detail to describe the scene in the Almanac.

More information about the ruins of Erkalion can be found in Issue 12 of Tome of Mystara magazine.