Thought i'd use this thread here instead of opening up a new one.
It seems i can't download any of the pdf files in your download section. I wanted to preview some things and also download some of the free stuff.
I also tried out going through check-out for some of the free items but paypal somehow cannot process an order with the amount of 0.00$ ... they always want me to change the amount.
Are the code and resouces for this tool available anywhere?
(I built an Astrology program that does the planets at any given time and location. with the nightsky tool code it might be posible to add the stars as well (or it might be a crouded mess). But it it worth looking at.)
reading the article, I cannot help but think "I want this map" :-)
Considering all aspects, I think regional maps of the quality of Shorkyne and Harn for Ivinia, Trierzon and perhaps Ederwyn should be high on the list of priorities - IF completion of these is feasible in any way.
Many a story, travel or kingdom can then be woven into the threads of these maps.
It's just the thing you describe. Lots of gorgeous scenery shots. But in one episode they start at the poles and work their way to the equator, finding something interesting in each biome.
Except the taiga.
They can find something interesting in the polar ice, the permafrost, the Sahara . . . but when they get to the taiga - which is IIRC the most extensive biome on Earth - they got *nothing*. The narration just talks right over it - "Why don't you take this chance to use the loo, because in all these enormous pine forests we couldn't even find a god damned squirrel to show you." Or something like that.
If you have access to the right technology (like a large screen television near your gaming area), then consider the feeling that film-makers evoke when they shoot huge panoramic scenes from (usually) a helicopter flying over the scenery. The Lord of the Rings trilogy has some examples of these kinds of shots, although you don't want Frodo interrupting your players suspension of disbelief...
Anyway, Google up a video (think National Geographic documentary stuff) that shows a sweeping mountain vista or two. Run that for your players while playing a suitable white noise nature sounds type CD. The sound of gently falling snow and 50 or 60 inches of empty screen might help convey the right mood...
And if the ingrates snicker and ask for some Mountain Dew, then use the GM's not-so-secret weapon, "Roll for initiative!" Because wyverns really do rock.
"I wonder how I will cope to confer this sense of emptiness to my gaming group when they wander there..."
I played under one GM whose solution for this problem was to play out every event of every day. Making camp. Moving. Breaking camp. Hunting. Eating. Losing a party member for a few minutes while he took a crap behind a tree. He would roll dice with monotonous frequency, always shaking his head and saying, "Nothing happens."
From him I learned this much: Realism in gaming is overrated.
the emptiness of this area only really seeps in when you compare it to settled area maps, like Chelemby.
Due to the involved work the REALLY settled areas like the heartland of Trierzon (tJ5, tI7, ...) probably contain more inhabitants each then the whole Hârnic island, while this one has - in total - just the population of a good sized village.
I wonder how I will cope to confer this sense of emptiness to my gaming group when they wander there...
BTW: It might make sense to combine the three maps (this, Borin and Hlen) into a pack for the Panaga hunters.
Since Glossdex 32 (Shadow of Bukrai) refers players/GMs to the GM Edition for the Bukrai Points system details, a simple errata correcting this to refer to the Undead section of The Bestiary would be a quick and welcome fix. If I'd known this at my last game, it would have saved a lot of time trying to find something in the entirely wrong publication.
I would be interested in an essay about Emelrene is different than Harn. Do the manors look exactly the same or are there important differences? Do the castle towns look more cosmopolitan?
I find it hard to read the gazetteer entries for fun. As Puster wrote, a kingdom module would be very entertaining, and I am sure it is in the works for the long run. But it is hard to see how this all fits together right now. Does the sheriff at Detule have a lot of power? What is this duchess of Charones all about?
I also would also second Puster's request for a digital version of the Trierzon region map, like you did for the Shorkyne region map. I own the old CGI printed map for Trierzon, but it is hidden away somewhere at home.
I like the steps taken to finally work out the "other" northwestern cultural center. Clans of Emelrene let us look into a new society, where the old living style of the free Emela and the feudalistic ideal do not clash but coexist in a benefial symbiosis. This sets the society of Emelrene apart from the multitude of states that look for a Terran model for inspiration.
The short articles on all entries on the local maps yield a lot of info - all that you need to actually travel there when you do not plan to go in depth.
Seeing the first map square of Trierzon mapped raised the hope that some day in the not too distant future (2017) we will get a regional map, and actually there seems to be a chance to see all of Emelrene mapped.
Which brings me to what I deem lacking - a kingdom module. A bracket to bring all the stuff together, so that the pieces of the mosaic will not only shine by itself but enhance the large picture that is already drawn - something that Venarive is for the region. Even when it is (just) a player edition, with abbreviated content that can be later expanded to a full article, I really long for articles on Emelrene (and Shorkyne, Harbaal, Palithane, Tarkain, Hurisea, the Quarph and Yarla - to name just the most urgent itches). Clans of Emelrene went a long way to prepare me for the local maps, and I am sure that much of the work for Emelrene is already done and just needs a proper shuffle and presentation.
The odd local article with peculiarities in manors, lodges, or magical sites could also create a better connection to the realm.
Hmmm. Somehow all my contributions here end just in wishlisting :-/
That said, I have gone through all the entries on the local maps and itch to bring my group to the sea, so that they can explore the coastal trade in the strait (before they venture via Haltinan and Techel towards Chelemby).
I was also considering to let them escort a group of Ilviran priests from Kaldor (they are currently in Tashal) towards Emelrene, to help out with some of the Ivashu problems - it seems that there are many. In that regard I am a bit concerned, however, that the theme of spawned Ivashu makes them more common in Emelrene then near Araka Kalai. Perhaps there is a good reason for it, but "Ivashu spawn and cause problems" look a bit common.
The way the psionic and magically errant areas affect the local society, especially the psionically enabled within, is yet a mystery to me, though that there is such an effect seems clear to me. The peculiarities of detecting and training the gifted people in Emelrene are certainly worth a chapter or two in the incoming kingdom module.