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Adventures in Aengmor

by Lille My

>IMC I'm going to set an adventure in the forest of Canolbarth, now the wicked Aengmor.
>The PCs are likely to enter "the forest dim" (as J. Keats would say) and, passing through the tunnels of the shadow elves, they will reach the ruins of a Ixion's Temple where there is, down in the crypts, a powerful artifact, etc etc ...

>I will appreciate:

>1. Any good idea or suggestion to help me creating the atmosphere of those places
>(I read only the Net's "Shadow Elves Handbooks")

A few inspiring words to expand on:

The Wicked Aengmor:

During day: Silent place, very few animals and no birds singing. the sky is grey and up there somewhere the sun is shining. Once in a while a small breeze rushes past, it is as if the forest is breathing, yet it is silent and dark. The ground is muddy covered in rotten plants and every step in the muck releases a foul smelling gas (mostly harmless, but some plants may release a hallucinogenic (sp?), look up a few dangerous plants and change their descriptions to giant swamps and mushrooms, also if you got GAZ 10 there is a good description of giant mushrooms). During night: Very dark, only few stars can be seen. Small critters surface, their eyes glow in the dark, harmless but scary. The gases released from the dead vegetation glows in the dark. The mushrooms can be heard creaking, are some of them moving around? Otherwise silent as the day.

>2. Any suggestion to add some creative encounters

Ex-Canolbarth forest:

Dangerous plants (change description to fit the new Canolbarth). Alfheim Avengers. Distrustful of any travellers. Bands of lost orcs. "Well, we followed dis cave und now we are 'ere, but where is 'ere?" They are more interested in getting out, than being hostile, you don't need to beat each and every orc you meet.

A small Shadowelf village. Brave shadowelves trying to survive on the surface, they too are distrustful of strangers as they are often attacked by Alfheim Avengers and lost bands of orcs, but they can be warm and friendly, especially to those who can teach them tricks on how to survive on the surface (many alien animals and plants, how to deal with changing seasons and work with wood). A good chance to switch roles and portray the elves as the bad guys and the shadowelves as their victims. They might also posses some new spells for travelling underground that they might sell to the PCs.

An old magic site, some of the magic points in Alfheim might be working still, but in a corrupted version, small gates opening at random letting out strange creatures (use the weirdest ones you otherwise never would have a chance to use).

The Temple:

Perhaps build by Schattenalfen (Aztec or Mayan style I think, maybe somebody remembers it better than I do). If it is far down it might be build in a small cavern all way round (imagine a ball with a city build on the inside (much like HW), so that the whole cavern is one big temple with all its towers pointing inward towards the centre where a small sun floats. This sun may be the Artifact or maybe the artifact is tied somehow to the central tower and if it is removed then the sun disappears/collapses (and the whole cave might begin to collapse, PCs must flee or be crushed and they won't have any further chances to come back and plunder the site). Due to its strange design this place might have map and/or gate to Hollow World (and the only way out of the cave is through the HW), perhaps it was originally build by Ixion to keep an eye on the hollow world and register all that happened down there and he chose a faithful group of observers and placed them, but now it is deserted. Some catastrophe occurred (Some of the observes got obsessed with a remnant of Blackmoor hidden away in a far away corner of HW, they made an expedition and gathered a lot of information which they used when they returned and it killed them all or perhaps the week without magic or Ixion perhaps needed his observers somewhere else and transported them there) and left the place empty, only defended by magical wardings, traps and constructs plus the natural dangers and those denizens who later moved into parts of this temple/city..