Thursday, June 27, 2019

Interview with Robert Adducci, founder of The Burnt World of Athas

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Robert Adducci, the founder of The Burnt World of Athas. Robert is a well known figure among Dark Sun fandom. He, together with Wayne Chang, hosts a Dark Sun podcast, appropriately named Bone, Stone, and Obsidian and runs a Dark Sun game for his Patreon members.
The first question I had for Robert is perhaps the same I would have for any fan, "There are a lot of settings for D&D, what got you interested in the Dark Sun setting?"

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

The Athasian Elemental Planes Part Five: The Plane of Water

Symbol by Vedeskaja.
The Elemental Plane of Water

It is very difficult for a vast majority of Athasians to imagine an infinite amount of water. There is no surface or floor on the Elemental Plane of Water, just endless water. Most Athasians might see a barrel of water that holds tens of gallons, or an underground cistern that holds hundreds, but the idea of endless water is often unfathomable.
Once, the water of the Plane of Water was cool and fresh. Some areas were a bit salty, but they could be avoided. The plane was rich in nutrients and oxygen for the fish living there. Now, much of the Plane of Water is fouled by mud and gives no life giving oxygen to its inhabitants. The endless sea has also lost much of its coolness and there are portions that are becoming too hot to live in.


Visitors with the right magic or psionics and the ability to swim will find the Elemental Plane of Water one of the most hospitable elemental planes. However, with the degradation of the plane and the constant bombardment of the forces of the Paraelemental Plane of Silt, the Plane of Water is becoming more and more hazardous.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Review of Dark Sun Vignette: "Red Well"

Jesse Heinig wrote this short adventure for AD&D 2nd Edition Dark Sun. I am going to review it. Just to let readers know: I do not know Jesse Heinig, except through the vignettes he's written, and have no reason to have an opinion of this vignette before reading it. You can read it yourself: Download it here.
Red Well is a good vignette. It introduces some characters that can be reused again and again. It also adds some more intrigue to the battle for control of Tyr after the fall of Kalak. The TL;DR version of the review is that Red Well is worth a read and can be used in a post-Kalak Tyr quite easily. In fact, I believe it could be run right after the official adventure: Freedom, if you so choose.
Read the full review after the jump.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Session Twenty-One: Helpful Friends

Note: For those unfamiliar with Dark Sun, psionics are called the Will for wild talents and the Way for trained psionicists.

Surprisingly, Shade had no problem leaving the city and met up with the rest of the group at Serena's hut. Serena was very happy to see Alaxander and gave him some farro flat bread. Shade, Vashti, and Jamil slept outside in the wagons, because the hut could not hold them all.

Day 3, Week 1, Sedulous, Friend's Vengeance, 190th King's Age, High Sun

Shade had to return to the city to give Tavio the tax money he and Jessel had collected. Alaxander decided to go with him, while Julius and Kalino decided to follow him to keep him safe. Vashti wanted to return to the jeweler to get more gems appraised and scout some academies of the way. She decided to take Aamina. They all discussed the possibility of enrolling the will possessing children, Cara, Kyla, and Osian, in one of the psionic schools.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Walter Baas

Walter Baas attended the Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and began writing for TSR and authored numerous works, including The Complete Gladiator's Handbook and City State of Tyr. In addition, he wrote numerous tournaments for Gen Con, Winter Fantasy Con, TactiCon and Genghis Con. Walter was also the first official TSR RPG Representative for Colorado.
Mr. Baas was a contributing member of the journalistic community for over twenty five years as a writer, producer, and photojournalist. His working experience included: WCBS, CBS Morning News, Evening News with Dan Rather, ABC News, and Nightline. Walter was co-creator for the multi-award winning PBS series "Spirit of Colorado". Walter Baas received ten Emmys from over thirty nominations, along with forty two other prestigious peer-judged awards for writing and producing.
Mr. Baas passed away earlier this month. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends in their time of loss.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

The Carru and The Baazrag. A Dark Sun Fable.

A carru and a baazrag made a deal to find the best food in the scrub plains and share with each other. They searched the scrub plains for a little while and the baazrag came upon a lirr. The baazrag begged the lirr not to slay and eat him. The baazrag then told the lirr that if he promised not to harm him, he would trap the carru for the lirr. The lirr agreed and watched the baazrag, through trickery, lead the carru into a deep hole. The carru tried to get out, but could not. When the lirr saw that the carru was trapped, he leaped upon the baazrag and tore at him with tooth and claw. As the baazrag lay dying, he asked the lirr why he was betrayed. The lirr explained that now that the carru was trapped he could kill and eat him as his leisure, but he was not going to let any meal escape him.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

The Athasian Elemental Planes Part Four: The Plane of Fire

Symbol by Vedeskaja.

The Elemental Plane of Fire

Death awaits any traveler who comes to the Elemental Plane of Fire unprepared. This plane is destruction incarnate and destroys anything that comes to it without adequate protection. The plane appears as a burning ocean of liquid fire under a sky of flame.
Once, the flames were a plethora of different colors, such as red, orange, and white, the colors were based upon how hot they burned. Now, the flames are almost universally red. They are still hot enough to cook a visitor, but not always hot enough to melt copper or iron. The flame that makes up the plane grow colder as the Plane of Fire slowly becomes super heated air, or molten slag.


You'd have to be pretty thick headed to think that the Elemental Plane of Fire is a safe place. This plane hungrily consumes all it touches, fire rules supreme here. If a thing can burn, it burns immediately upon entering the plane. Even some things that normally can’t burn do so in certain places on the Elemental Plane of Fire. Visitors traveling here unprotected suffer damage just by being on the plane. Worse, travelers have to figure out some way to breathe fire or they’ll suffocate faster than they’ll burn to death.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Session Twenty: Collecting Taxes

Tyr Marketplace
Note: For those unfamiliar with Dark Sun, psionics are called the Will for wild talents and the Way for trained psionicists.

The group continued arguing about what to do about the map. Julius said they should follow it, but the rest of the group was more concerned about what to do with their collection of children. Kalino said he knew he could find an apprenticeship for Kyran, but was unsure about the others. They suggested taking them to the The School of Thought, but they were unsure if they would just be enslaved again. In the end, they decided to scout the city for craftsmen looking for apprentices and not slaves.
As they were walking toward the gate, they happened to spot their old friend, Jessel. They called out to him and he joined them. He had just finished assisting some farmers and had nothing else to do.
Jessel was singled out as they approached the gate, which was guarded by two half-giants and two black cassocked templars. The Templar tried to hire Jessel to work as a guard. Jessel told him he would think about it.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Avasori - Ruvoka of Athas

The Avasori are ruvoka from the Elemental Plane of Water. They travel the planes easily, but on Athas they are bound to certain locations. They often work with druids. It is said druids who reach 18th-level or higher can become an avasori. Avasori have their own language, but with other intelligent beings use a limited form of telepathy.
Avasori have blue or blue-green skin, webbed hands and feet, pointed ears, and white or black hair. When engaged in combat, the Avasori wear coral, leather (crafted from a sea creature), or no armor. They use long daggers or harpoons that are generally enhanced with elemental water magic.

Stats after the jump.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Dwarves of Athas Part Five: Settlements 2 (Kled)

About forty miles northeast of Tyr is an interesting village of Dwarves who have dedicated themselves to worship of the sun and uncovering ruins. This village is called Kled and was founded about one hundred fifty years ago by a Dwarf named Barunus Lyanius. I had the pleasure of visiting the village of Kled just one time, when I traded a large amount of food for some iron they had found in the desert.
However, Armin, a human who trades more often with the village than I is able to give more information.

Kled is unlike any other village I've been to. The entire populace is fanatically dedicated to the worship of the sun. I say fanatic only because I've seen other element worshipers who do not feel the need to design their village around a plaza shaped and colored like the element of their reverence. This is accomplished with red sandstone.
In the center of the village is a cistern that draws up water from beneath the sandy wastes. This is accomplished by a wind powered water screw. It's quite ingenious, because the wind seems to blow constantly out here and keeps the village well watered year round.