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11/10/2017 6:33 am  #1


Mysteries of Hyperborea

I wanted to start a conversation about the "meta" that various DMs use for their version of Hyperborea. One of the great things about AS&SH that it shares with other excellent settings is that was written with just enough evocative detail to spark the imagination, but is vague enough to ensure that 100 gaming tables will have 100 different visions of Hyperborea. Here are some of the core assumptions I made when building my campaign. I'd love to hear your ideas! 

Hyperborea exists 4 billion years in the future, sometime after the sun transforms into a red giant and destroys Old Earth's inner solar system.

Thanks to the Green Death, the ubiquity of covert necromancy, and strange energies that defy easy explanation, Hyperborea is lousy with undead. While nowhere near "zombie apocalypse" levels, no one in their right mind lingers around old ruins, cemeteries, barrows, and tombs for fear of undead. Thankfully, most undead do not roam far from their lairs and local power structures do what they can to eradicate or contain undead that threaten populated areas.  

Most gods of Hyperborea fall into the categories of Elder Gods (anthropomorphic deities tied to humanity such as Artemis, Apollo, Rel, Krimmr, Yimr, et al), Great Old Ones (monstrous alien beings such as Kthulhu, Xathaqqua, Yig, Kraken, et all) or Outer Gods (Azathoth, Yug).  It is unlikely that any but the most erudite of sages know the difference. 

Hyperborea is a cosmic petri dish for an Outer God of unimaginable power and scope, perhaps Yug (Yog-Sothoth). Even Great Old Ones such as The Ashen Worm, Kthulhu, and Xathaqqua are at most tools to this being. The author of this blog communicates the general idea with hyperbole and wry wit.
   

 

11/10/2017 7:31 am  #2


Re: Mysteries of Hyperborea

Well I agree very closely to your idea, I had it 5 billion years in future with a dying sun and in my small section of Hyperborea in my Grey Coast setting, the southern most part, that I call the Greyland is infested in undead due to a some magical explosion that killed the land around it and caused the dead to rise.

I working at the materializing island of Thule which has just arrived and planning to base the inhabitants; something very like: Acheron from Howard's work.

Gods: Trying to include everyone  of the gods of the saga within area, but it be extreme to include too much influence from the lot of them. Raven influences a small group of Tlingit on the Little Italy peninsula and a mixed Yakut-Tlingit group have become CE berserkers types and raid the rest of Grey coast, probably using Thaumagorga to influence them. There is a hive of Yig worshippers in Brigand's Bay which affect the local land and Apollo, Artemis, Aurorus Helios are the peoples gods, though I want to add Xathoqqua into the area, as well as Yithaqqa in the cold mountains around the area and Kraken (Khalk-Xu) controlling the local seas. There is a Viking influences from Vasaland and New Vinland, so Ullr is present and also has a temple in Blackmarsh Castle due to the Vasan assisting the Hyperborean regain their land, when they once had been removed from power by an Hyperborean sorcerer usurping their territory . Last their is Yoon'Deh guarding the wilderness areas. I near used most of the gods provide and probably will create a few of my own, but it will do for the present.

People: As mentioned before, a small group of Tlingit, the new Thuleans, Rurasin (The CE Berserkers), Kelts had come south and settled lands, Kimmerians had also crossed the mountains from their steppes and settled, this of course creating Kimmeri-Kelts. The Viking of course, and a group of common people called Ostrobards with Anglo-Saxon influences. Mongolians roam a small part of land in the Soutland and Mongol-Kelt groups have occurred. Two very small group of Atlanteans which live in a inland salt-watered lake and out at sea close to a small group of islands. And of course the Hyperboreans, who maybe be more common in my idea of the world than others...?

Ah, and the Bird-men with arms and more cruel and nasty than the official version, which are attempting to gain as much as they can for themselves! There is a lot more; I trying to edit my scripts of the land and of it's different locations is taking longer than I would have wanted, but it getting there (about another year of work probably)!
 

 

11/10/2017 9:03 am  #3


Re: Mysteries of Hyperborea

Brock Savage wrote:

I wanted to start a conversation about the "meta" that various DMs use for their version of Hyperborea. One of the great things about AS&SH that it shares with other excellent settings is that was written with just enough evocative detail to spark the imagination, but is vague enough to ensure that 100 gaming tables will have 100 different visions of Hyperborea. Here are some of the core assumptions I made when building my campaign. I'd love to hear your ideas! 

Hyperborea exists 4 billion years in the future, sometime after the sun transforms into a red giant and destroys Old Earth's inner solar system.

Thanks to the Green Death, the ubiquity of covert necromancy, and strange energies that defy easy explanation, Hyperborea is lousy with undead. While nowhere near "zombie apocalypse" levels, no one in their right mind lingers around old ruins, cemeteries, barrows, and tombs for fear of undead. Thankfully, most undead do not roam far from their lairs and local power structures do what they can to eradicate or contain undead that threaten populated areas.  

Most gods of Hyperborea fall into the categories of Elder Gods (anthropomorphic deities tied to humanity such as Artemis, Apollo, Rel, Krimmr, Yimr, et al), Great Old Ones (monstrous alien beings such as Kthulhu, Xathaqqua, Yig, Kraken, et all) or Outer Gods (Azathoth, Yug).  It is unlikely that any but the most erudite of sages know the difference. 

Hyperborea is a cosmic petri dish for an Outer God of unimaginable power and scope, perhaps Yug (Yog-Sothoth). Even Great Old Ones such as The Ashen Worm, Kthulhu, and Xathaqqua are at most tools to this being. The author of this blog communicates the general idea with hyperbole and wry wit.
   

I try to emphasize several things during play that are "Meta" in nature and that folks would notice as characters in Hyperborea:
The red sun Helios and the two moons Phobos and Selene
Its generally pretty cold.
People are in survival mode and acts of kindness are rare. The world is cruel
Xathoqqua's church is in control and struggles constantly to maintain dominance
Magic is feared
Travel is dangerous due to "things" in the dark as well as natural occurrences.
Cities are melting pots but generally people groups are xenophobic and will carry out long held grudges.
Picts are awesome!!!

I hadn't thought of the lots of undead thing that sounds pretty neat.  Like people living on Hyperborea need more problems!!
 


“How can I wear the harness of toil
And sweat at the daily round,
While in my soul forever
The drums of Pictdom sound?” 
 

11/10/2017 9:08 am  #4


Re: Mysteries of Hyperborea

Great thread, love reading everyone’s intepretations. 


Blackadder23: Insanely long villain soliloquy, then "Your action?"
BORGO'S PLAYER: I shoot him in the face
 

11/10/2017 10:08 am  #5


Re: Mysteries of Hyperborea

Not sure it completely fits the topic, but I have fully converted Hyperborea to the Hyborian Age, and it doesn't really take a lot of work. There are so many little homages from REH's work already in the game, and both worlds are left pretty open for interpretation anyway. 


"But not all men seek rest and peace; some are born with the spirit of the storm in their blood" -REH
Rambling Conan Blog

 
 

11/10/2017 4:36 pm  #6


Re: Mysteries of Hyperborea

Please keep the ideas coming, I am always interested in seeing various interpretations of Hyperborea.

mabon5127 wrote:

Xathoqqua's church is in control and struggles constantly to maintain dominanceMagic is feared 

Hi Mabon, your impressions of Hyperborea are pretty much in line with mine. It's a cruel, cold place.  I've elaborated on the overall fear of magic and how the Xathoqquan Orthodoxy maintains dominance.  I'd go so far as to say that power structures must regulate magic to stay in charge. 

In the City-State of Khromarium, magic is theoretically reigned in by the Magicians' Guild, Hyperborean noble families, and inquisitors of the Xathoqquan Orthodoxy on behalf of the Oligarchy. In practice, there is little risk for the unlawful practice of sorcery provided one is discreet or influential. Punishments for unsanctioned magic are harsh precisely because it is so difficult to enforce.  

Rural folk and barbarians tend to look upon magic use with great suspicion unless performed by a native, typically a druid or shaman. 

Necromancy is feared and hated almost everywhere outside of Ix but interestingly enough, it is also the most commonly practiced school of magic.  

The Orthodoxy ruthlessly maintains its status quo as the dominant religion in Khromarium. With the complicity of the Oligarchy, mutants, necromancers, heretics, and daemonologists are burned at the pyre by witch hunters of the Xathoqquan inquisition in front of the grand temple each week, drawing large crowds.  

 

Grimmshade wrote:

Not sure it completely fits the topic, but I have fully converted Hyperborea to the Hyborian Age, and it doesn't really take a lot of work. There are so many little homages from REH's work already in the game, and both worlds are left pretty open for interpretation anyway. 

Another great strength of AS&SH is that is draws upon a few powerful sources of inspiration and doesn't include everything under the sun in an attempt to be all things to all men like Forgotten Realms or Golarion. I've strengthened the Howard and Lovecraft connections in my version of Hyperborea. For example, Yig is known as Set in Khromarium and the Stygians of the Hyborian Age have contributed much to the Ixian bloodline.

Last edited by Brock Savage (11/10/2017 4:39 pm)

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