Thursday, August 22, 2019

#RPGaDAY2019: Lost

Today's topic is Lost.

One of my favorite things in RPGs is visiting or exploring lost lands.

I am currently re-reading Tolkien's The Silmarillion.  I didn't enjoy it as a kid, but when I re-read as an adult a few tears back I loved it.  Today I am getting a lot more out of it still.

One thing that bugged me back then that I adore now are these maps.

As a kid I was very familiar with this map:

I had this on my wall for years until I went to college.

But this map in the Silmarillion bugged me.

Obviously, these maps are related.  Reading the stories I knew these were the same worlds or at least related lands.

It wasn't till I noticed the only commonality between the two maps, on the far right of the Middle Earth map and the far left of the Beleriand map you can see the Ered Luin, the Blue Mountains.

It works better if you place the maps like this and sink the lands under water that Tolkien mentions.

Now, this map fills me with joy.  Look at all those lost lands!  If I ever do a Middle-Earth game there will be a way to visit these lands.

Even if I never do I want to know more about it.  What happened to these lands when the waters claimed them? Were there still people there?  Not just lost Gondolin, all the places.

It reminds me of Doggerland.  A lot more real and closer to home, but no less lost.

Think about it 8,000 BCE, lands to the east of England.  Walking from (what would be) London to (what would be) Copenhagen.

This is a Mesolithic (Middle to Late) period in human history.  We know so little about this time and the people that lived here.  Not just a lost land, a lost people, a lost time.

Sure we have some wonderful archeological finds from this time, but who were the people? What did they do? What sort of adventures would they have had?

Again, I might never get the chance to do anything with it, but I do love looking at these maps.

Back in the early days of AD&D 1st ed I took an immediate liking to the lost lands of the Suel Empire of the Greyhawk setting.

Like Middle Earth, I want to run a game set during the Invoked Devastation / Rain of Colorless Fire.  Something along the lines of the Doctor Who episode "The Time Monster" where the PCs get sent back in time to witness the destruction. I would have watched it around the same time I was playing AD&D 1.

I love lost lands, one day I might even get to visit them!


Tim Knight said...

Doggerland is - currently - the basis for the new fantasy campaign I'm scratching together ;)

grodog said...

I wasn't familiar with Doggerland previously, thanks for the link!

WRT other Lost Lands in Greyhawk: in addition to the two destroyed/vanquished Suel/Bakluni empires, these other areas were lost over the centuries:

- the Isles of Woe, sunken beneath the Nyr Dyv---one of my favorites!)
- the Riftcanyon could easily be the result of another magical catastrophe---or an asteroid strike!, or geological volcanic spreading (like at Iceland), a planar rift/collision, etc., with the resulting chasm eating up lands once there
- small hidden kingdoms exist in mountain valleys, perhaps remnants from previous days of glory (the Valley of the Mage,
- the ruins of the fallen Great Kingdom, fallen Olven kingdoms, Blackmoor, the lost kindgom of Sulm (destroyed in the magical catastroph that caused the Bright Desert), the Suss forest Suel city, etc. abound as possible areas to explore, too.


Venger Satanis said...

There's only one true lost land as far as I'm concerned... the land of the lost.