Friday, October 20, 2017

Map and Story Block 11

Good evening everyone. Another 5 mile square block in our continuing series:

Block 11


Scale: 1 square = 1/2 mile

Traveling further north and east from the battleground will lead you deeper into Medvedian territory.  Slightly longer than a day-and-a-half’s journey in that direction lies one of the Medvenian’s larger areas, the Tryphar Caverns and the Voniheln Woods.  The caverns lie to the east and are the home of the males of the Giant Whisper Kin.  The woods are home to the women, children and the infirm. The Kin built their homes in the upper boughs of the trees and with the help of magic they have created wooden paths linking the various homes to each other and to the nearby caves.

Men rarely venture from the caves and indeed most Medvedian tribes are led by women. But the men will fight, individuals will protect their mate when she is pregnant and all will gather to defend the Kin if threatened.  Otherwise, men prefer their solitude and studies. The Tryphar caverns are known for its library which is filled with books, scrolls and the art of the Giant Whisper Kin.

The women of Giant Whisper Kin are slightly more social and their homes are quite beautiful.  Each family, along with their extended relations, live in a tree house. The house is built on sturdy old trees, known as Egoves and through magic a room can be grown at any time.  You can tell how old is a particular family in the tribe by how large they have created their home. 

A special group of women in the Giant Whisper Kin, are skilled in nature magic that allows them to talk to the trees and work and shape them.  These homes are usually quite elaborate and feature detailed wooden statues. Even common furniture such as their chairs and tables are wondrously beautiful.

Text (c) 2017 Heleen Durston and map (c) 2017 Andrew Durston

Monday, October 2, 2017

Map and Story Block 10

Good Evening everyone,

Continuing our series developing a world a 5 mile square block at a time, we present:

Block 10


Scale: 1 square = 1/2 mile

Two days journey to the north east the traveler will come upon an area of many hills and valleys.  The land is scarred and scorched and odd pits and gouges in the land seem to be all out of place.  The area is home to many caves and cave systems and three races claim the right to own this land.  Currently the land is divided into roughly 3 areas, each corresponding to the direction that the claiming race hailed from. The Dwarves to the south have tried to mine the caves for its precious minerals and gems.  The Tygrys, coming from the south-west, are positive this land belongs to them. Lastly, the Medvedian (bear) people claim the rest as a religious area because some of these caves are said to bring blessing to the cubs that are born within them.  Battles happen several times a year; but no race has held it more than a few months.

The Dwarven part of the land includes a cave system which they have mined in between battles.  The caves contain the rare mineral Kutosolite which is used in many of the elite weapons and armor that they create. The top of the land features the remains of previous fortifications and includes wood, stone, and various metal debris; mostly these represent the remains of left-over siege engines and fortifications.

The south-western third of this block is part of the land that once belonged to the Tygrys.  The Tygrys were the original owners of the land and are willing to fight tooth-and-claw to keep it.  Many Tygrys can trace their ancestors back to this area of land and they refuse to let it go.

Lastly, the Bear tribes’ area is a series of caves that overlook most of the battlefield.  Each year, when the cubs, are due to be born, many pregnant females come to the caves to give birth. It is during this time that the Medvedian tribe’s men are at their most fierce and protective.  Several battles have been started during this time as some poor Dwarf or Tygrys has gotten in the way of an overprotective father Medvedian. 

Text (c) 2017 Heleen Durston and map (c) 2017 Andrew Durston

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Map and Story Block 9

Good Afternoon everyone,

Continuing our series developing a world a 5 mile square block at a time, we present:

Block 9


Scale: 1 square = 1/2 mile

Leaving Aki and heading a day's journey north-east, the traveler will come across a large butte.  Carefully and loving carved into the butte is  a shrine to the most famous Tygrys hero, Rahki. Rahki had a long and glorious life and saved the Tygrys many times from total destruction.  The shrine honors her bones which are buried beneath it.  There is a large encampment in front of the shrine.  Each year an honor guard of Tygrys is selected to guard the shrine. Many Tygrys hope to be picked for this wonderful duty; but only a few are chosen.

 The Shrine at the Butte


Scale: 1 square = 250 feet

It is a tradition of the Tygrys to visit the shrine at least once a year to receive a blessing from He Who Guards The Shrine.  This person is also chosen once a year from a secret ballot that each Tygrys fills out and nominates exceptional examples of Tygrys that have helped their race improve in some way.  Once a Tygrys becomes He Who Guards the Shrine they go through a ceremony and then don the robes and a ceremonial mask that has been made to look like Rahki. This mask doesn’t come off except when there are no other Tygrys around. It is considered an honor on your family if one of your relatives becomes He Who Guard The Shrine.

Next Block: The Borderlands.

Text (c) 2017 Heleen Durston and map (c) 2017 Andrew Durston

Monday, September 4, 2017

Map and Story Block 8

Good Evening everyone,

Continuing our series developing a world a 5 mile square block at a time, we present:

Block 8


Scale: 1 square = 1/2 mile

Following the road to the south of The Stormy Bed, takes the traveler in an east/northeasterly direction.  Taking this road for a standard day’s journey will have you arrive in Aki, a primarily Tygrys (The Dwarfs call them Tigermen) village.  Most of the journey is made through the plains with the occasional sighting of a Dindwell tree and a small lake that usually accompanies it.  The Dindwell trees are around 10 ft tall and have large leaves that provide shade from the sun.  The Dindwell trees tend to grow in clusters and the Tygrys advantage of this and build a lot of their smaller villages and towns under them.  The Dindwell trees also provide a food source for the Tygrys in the form of a large nut called the Duscle that grows year round.  The Tygrys use all parts of the Duscle, the shell becomes the basis for part of the spears that most Tygrys carry. The inner shell is used in several healing tonics and the inner meat is eaten at almost every meal.

Aki is the home to the Dindwell Spear tribe. A copse of Dindwell trees rests against the small lake of Juhq. Among these trees are huts made from some of the local tall grasses. There are no walls or boundaries to the village and everyone seems calm and peaceful.

Text (c) 2017 Heleen Durston and map (c) 2017 Andrew Durston

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Map and Story Block 7

Good Evening everyone,

Continuing our series developing a world a 5 mile square block at a time, we present:

Block 7


Scale: 1 square = 1/2 mile

About a day’s journey to the north is a waystation/ inn by the name of The Stormy Bed.  The road in front of The Stormy Bed continues to the north and just before the inn the road veers to the east. The Stormy Bed provides many services, food, rooms to sleep, laundry services, a stable and on certain days of the week a money trader sets up in the common room with 2 guards. The Stormy Bed is run by an unusual couple, Nattereak and Hisa Stormgrog. He is a traditional dwarf with a jovial outlook and always a kind word. She is a tiger woman with a long sinuous tail and a red-orange furred body.  The couple met over 50 years ago and set up The Stormy Bed. People have been talking about the place ever since.  

Next Block: Plains of the Tigers.

Text (c) 2017 Heleen Durston and map (c) 2017 Andrew Durston

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Battlemaps from Micromaps

As an experiment, took one of my micromaps (usually drawn in a 20 grid by 30 grid format) and blew it up so that the actual size was 10 inches by 15 inches (1/2 inch per square). Usable as actual battle-maps? Probably too coarse but was a fun exercise nonetheless:
 If anyone actually prints and uses it, let me know. The original description for this one was simply: #plants :) (from #micromapmonday)

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Map and Story Block 6

Good Evening everyone,

Continuing our series developing a world a 5 mile square block at a time, we present:
Block 6

Scale: 1 square = 1/2 mile

The Beryljaw ordkisite mine is a little more than a day’s journey from Muhr Fahldor. Urbock has arranged everything quite nicely for the workers and has left his brother-in-law, Hendrol, in charge.  Since the mine is so far outside of town, a set of dorms and a large feasting hall were built near the mine.  The dwarves work a schedule built around a day’s journey there, then 7 days of work, another day home and 3 days off.  The miner’s enjoy this schedule and Urbock prides himself on taking care of the miner’s and the mine.

One advancement that Hendrol has made to the mine is the magical reseeding of the ordkisite in the mountain.  Hendrol has several mages come to the mine once a month and magically collapse the tunnels that the dwarves have been working in.  The mages then use spells to generate new ordkisite through these tunnels.  The new ordkisite takes several months to form so the miner’s work in other areas.  This way there is always ordkisite to produce.

Next Block: Beyond is the border.

Text (c) 2017 Heleen Durston and map (c) 2017 Andrew Durston