Image and video hosting by TinyPic
Image and video hosting by TinyPic


Being the Official Discussion Forum for Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea™


Visit us at the HYPERBOREA web site!

You are not logged in. Would you like to login or register?

2/06/2019 5:46 pm  #1


Thoughts on currents and the sea

I GM for a group of players who are aiming at stealing or acquiring a ship and becoming pirates.

I'm thinking of making it so the currents in the seas of Hyperborea generally move in certain directions during certain years. Like imagine if, during  year 4, the currents just make it really easy to get from Vikland to the Zangerios Islands, or example.

Anyone ever do anything like this? Would it be too rough to have it so that during the year of darkness the seas currents don't really move at all?

Side note: What's awesome about this whole idea is that it was entirely the players'. Also, plot-wise, this pirate scheme brings the party back to Xambaala and into the greasy hands of Aramis D'athak. When the party was last in Xambaala, they never really finished the Anthropophagi adventure. 

 

2/06/2019 7:04 pm  #2


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

If I recall David P. had something like this at the start of In Umbrage Taken.

And definitely send me a copy of whatever you come up with, would love to use it!

Last edited by Iron Ranger (2/06/2019 7:05 pm)

 

2/07/2019 9:28 am  #3


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

The Gazetteer has this:

"The Hyperborean Sea is moderately windy. Prevailing air currents tend to circulate betwixt the 18th and 36th parallels, an effect referred to as River Okeanos. Here the winds flow in opposing belts, looping and crisscrossing at different junctures depending on seasons and other conditions.

"These wuthering airstreams are a navigational nightmare to most. Veteran mariners (viz. Amazons, Ixians, Vikings, and Zangeriosans) understand the River Okeanos and use it to their advantage. In Tempest (Year 4, Hare), River Okeanos is plagued by deadly whirlpools. Sea ice forms from Coda (Year 12, Fox) to Genesis (Year 1, Bear), and icebergs are a constant threat."

And in "Waterborne Expeditions":

"Hyperborea’s roiling seas are unpredictably windy and teem with frightful leviathans. The realm is flat, its seas perpetually spilling off the edge of the world in massive falls. Ice sheets consume many bays and inlets during winter; icebergs present ofter in spring; and in summer, storms at sea are more frequent.

"In Hyperborea the enormous red sun never rises to a true zenith; rather, it wheels around the horizon, rising and falling in subtle degrees. Measurements are taken by employing a type of sextant, subtle differences in the sun’s position relative to the horizon indicating heading (although skilled seamen can find their bearings without need of an instrument). On the open sea, celestial navigation generally is easier, though no less hazardous."

Skilled seamen. Heh.

Anyhoo:

"Few vessels are appropriate for open sea expeditions. The finest seaworthy vessels in Hyperborea include the Amazon carrack and the large Viking longship (drekar); other sizeable vessels such as the cog and galley are fine seaworthy ships, though usually do not operate on the open sea."

So it's pretty clear that most ship voyages hug the coasts and go from settlement to settlement, probably along known routes. I would think that most would carry as many combat-capable guards and sailors as possible since in Hyperborea everyone is a pirate.

Navigating the open seas is probably a highly specialized skill. If my players tried to do it without expert advice, I have a feeling it would eventually go very badly for them. They have stolen, lost, restolen, captured, infected with monsterism, and ultimately sold at a steep discount the odd knarr or three, and I have let them pilot it around the coasts with only the normal dangers. But if they were going to take it to Zangeiros or someplace, yeah, I'd want some "Uh-Oh Tables" in a hurry.

Though "Seaman, Navigator" is available as an expert hireling for 100 gp/month. If, you know, you have time to do some hiring and are not running from the Vikings whose longhouse you infected with weresealism and then fireballed when you jump in the ship.

So I'd say making up any system one wants for prevailing and shifting currents makes fine sense, with no need to pay much attention even to fake physics. Just decide what's most fun and put it in place. Whirlpools and icebergs are good entries on any event tables you might want to make. (Oh, hey, look at that).

Given that so much Hyperborean life congregates on the coasts -- and given that coastal water travel is still moderately safer than going overland in most cases -- what I wonder about often are the tides. I have zero idea what two moons around a disk would do to tides. I am not even sure how to make something up! Eight tides a day? Tides differing east to west? No clue. Didn't we have a geophysicist around here at some point?

 

2/07/2019 1:42 pm  #4


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

There's some good discussion on Canonfire! about Greyhawk's two moons' effects on tides, among other things. I'll dig up some links for you after work.

Allan.

Last edited by grodog (2/07/2019 1:43 pm)

 

2/07/2019 2:03 pm  #5


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

grodog wrote:

There's some good discussion on Canonfire! about Greyhawk's two moons' effects on tides, among other things. I'll dig up some links for you after work.

Allan.

Cool!

 

2/08/2019 8:53 am  #7


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

That is extensive. Someone really got into it.

I guess Hyperborea is complicated by not being a sphere. Does it even rotate? I would guess not! Gravity definitely seems to be artificial. Probably a side effect of whatever yanked it off Old Earth in the first place.

Probably simplest (and I am a lazy, lazy person) to say that tides are twice daily, lower as Selene wanes, higher as Selene waxes, and reaching extremes of high and low when the fullness (festivals) and newness coincide. Extremes enough to cover low docks and inundate soft shores or, conversely, expose vast reaches of muck and wrack to the ruddy light.

 

2/08/2019 9:09 am  #8


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

Handy Haversack wrote:

Probably simplest (and I am a lazy, lazy person) to say that tides are twice daily, lower as Selene wanes, higher as Selene waxes, and reaching extremes of high and low when the fullness (festivals) and newness coincide. Extremes enough to cover low docks and inundate soft shores or, conversely, expose vast reaches of muck and wrack to the ruddy light.

This.
Even though I enjoy physics, I think rigorously applying it to a fantasy world devised for adventuring isn't really useful for the table, and it takes a little away of the fantastical.

 

2/08/2019 9:25 am  #9


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

Handy Haversack wrote:

SNIP
So I'd say making up any system one wants for prevailing and shifting currents makes fine sense, with no need to pay much attention even to fake physics. Just decide what's most fun and put it in place. Whirlpools and icebergs are good entries on any event tables you might want to make. (Oh, hey, look at that).
SNIP

And for those too lazy to read a pdf or even print it out...

http://gizmomathboy.com/he_app


What? Me worry?
 

2/08/2019 9:28 am  #10


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

I forgot how much fun those tables are:

http://gizmomathboy.com/he_app/hyperborean_sea/ocean/result

Hyperborean Encounter Tables 2

By Ben Ball

munged for the web by gizmomathboy
Return to Encounters home
location: Hyperborean Sea
terrain: ocean
encounter:

Ixian Slavers A black-sailed carrack appears, blown by no natural wind and steering itself without a crew. Onboard is a level 9 Ixian necromancer (with standard equipment and spells per Appendix II, plus 5 doses of dust of paralysis), accompanied by either 20 0th-level Ixian light infantrymen with treasure class L or 19 zombies (50% chance of either). The necromancer casts disabling spells and employs dust of paralysis; meanwhile, his minions swarm the party's ship with intent to seize slaves (if the minions are zombies, they have been commanded not to bite the "merchandise"). Below decks on the slave ship are 50 shackled slaves of random racial stocks, possibly including some Ixian renegades being returned to Fazzuum for punishment.

"Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea", "AS&SH", and all other North Wind Adventures product names and their respective logos are trademarks of North Wind Adventures, LLC, and are used here with permission.

Last edited by gizmomathboy (2/08/2019 9:30 am)


What? Me worry?
 

2/08/2019 1:26 pm  #11


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

gizmomathboy wrote:

Handy Haversack wrote:

SNIP
So I'd say making up any system one wants for prevailing and shifting currents makes fine sense, with no need to pay much attention even to fake physics. Just decide what's most fun and put it in place. Whirlpools and icebergs are good entries on any event tables you might want to make. (Oh, hey, look at that).
SNIP

And for those too lazy to read a pdf or even print it out...

http://gizmomathboy.com/he_app

Um. Um. UM!!!

How is it that I didn't know about these until today, gizmo? That's it. I am taking back the +0 sword I was going to give you in Wisconsin.
 

 

2/08/2019 1:28 pm  #12


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

Handy Haversack wrote:

gizmomathboy wrote:

Handy Haversack wrote:

SNIP
So I'd say making up any system one wants for prevailing and shifting currents makes fine sense, with no need to pay much attention even to fake physics. Just decide what's most fun and put it in place. Whirlpools and icebergs are good entries on any event tables you might want to make. (Oh, hey, look at that).
SNIP

And for those too lazy to read a pdf or even print it out...

http://gizmomathboy.com/he_app

Um. Um. UM!!!

How is it that I didn't know about these until today, gizmo? That's it. I am taking back the +0 sword I was going to give you in Wisconsin.
 

(Also, if you do the same with the weather tables in the appendix, all is forgiven.)

 

2/08/2019 4:09 pm  #13


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

Handy Haversack wrote:

Handy Haversack wrote:

gizmomathboy wrote:


And for those too lazy to read a pdf or even print it out...

http://gizmomathboy.com/he_app

Um. Um. UM!!!

How is it that I didn't know about these until today, gizmo? That's it. I am taking back the +0 sword I was going to give you in Wisconsin.
 

(Also, if you do the same with the weather tables in the appendix, all is forgiven.)

Glory Me, bloodbag but I did!

In the same thread as the announcement for the new version:

http://hyperborea.boardhost.com/viewtopic.php?pid=14031#p14031


However, I think doing the weather tables is gonna be a lot easier that finishing up the work to pull in the appendices for BA's wonderful encounter tables (to fully flesh out all the parts you can hit in the tables...oi vey).

I doubt I'll get it down before Gary Con...but we'll see ;-)


What? Me worry?
 

2/09/2019 9:48 am  #14


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

gizmomathboy wrote:

Handy Haversack wrote:

Handy Haversack wrote:


Um. Um. UM!!!

How is it that I didn't know about these until today, gizmo? That's it. I am taking back the +0 sword I was going to give you in Wisconsin.
 

(Also, if you do the same with the weather tables in the appendix, all is forgiven.)

Glory Me, bloodbag but I did!

In the same thread as the announcement for the new version:

http://hyperborea.boardhost.com/viewtopic.php?pid=14031#p14031


However, I think doing the weather tables is gonna be a lot easier that finishing up the work to pull in the appendices for BA's wonderful encounter tables (to fully flesh out all the parts you can hit in the tables...oi vey).

I doubt I'll get it down before Gary Con...but we'll see ;-)

Shoot, sorry, I meant the weather appendix in the 2nd ed. book. Though I fully support expanding this to deal with the NPC encounters. Let me know if there's anything that can be done to help.

 

2/09/2019 10:07 pm  #15


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

Oh, I know you meant the 2e weather stuff.

The NPC stuff is a bit more involved to code in a way that works they way I've already coded it.


What? Me worry?
 

2/19/2019 10:45 am  #16


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

One thing that occurred to me on this topic: currents could be the "vanishing tower" of Hyperborea. That is, new islands and archipelagos and mysterious towers of weirdos (@lige). That is, microchanges in air pressure or currents blown in from the Black Gulf or just Kthulhu rolling over and scratching his bum can change the currents and reveal new islands that have been cut off from contact by all but some highly esoteric aero- and etheronauts since basically however long ago you want. So, hello, Lemurian Remnant! How you living, Swordfish Islands?

 

3/04/2019 9:48 am  #17


Re: Thoughts on currents and the sea

I wanted to offer an update as the party's pirate plans altered:

By the time the party went from where they came up with the idea to get a ship (a small fishing village located on south shore of the big lake west of Yithorium) to the place where one gets a ship, Xambaala(Yay!), plans altered a bit.

Instead of stealing a ship, the party would pool their meager treasures and buy a coaster. Even then, funds were light. Thankfully, it being the 2nd week of the 13th month in the year of the Wolf at that time, ships were going cheaply as the year of the Tempest was nearly at hand.

a little while later, after an epic battle at sea, the bigger questions now were:
1)"What really is an Ixian carrack?" we played it off as a Cog with 2 masts.
2)"What happens when you take an Ixian ship? How does it move without needing the wind?" Some magical item only Ixian captains carry, I'm thinking a medallion that holds a genie.

The party's patron, the debauched lord Arsenios of Pentos, is now one ship richer, and the party now has at least one new arch enemy; a particularly wet and cold Ixian necromancer who survived losing his ship and has washed up on a beach, some miles south of Xambaala.
 

     Thread Starter
 

Board footera

“Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea”, “AS&SH”, and all other North Wind Adventures product names and their respective logos are trademarks of North Wind Adventures, LLC in the USA and other countries. ©2018 North Wind Adventures, LLC.