Wiki says this about the book's setting & :
The book basically has everything a DM needs to create an entire campaign from scratch! Telepathic races, cosmic psionic entities, Diaspar is like something out of Logan's Run, vast sprialing technology, weird religions, vast technological creations & elements that seem right out of a movie or comic book!
Elements against a background that's as boring as hell!
All that simply needs to be done is to take the elements of OD&D or a game such as Stars With Numbers & combined them.
There are two books the earlier Against the Fall of Night as well as The City & The Stars. Basically Clarke took a book he wasn't happy with revamped it & then thought it would replace the earlier version. Like remakes of movies today you sometimes can't replace the classics.
Weirdly enough I believe that both novels can be used as perfect blue prints for presenting mega dungeons. Bits & pieces left behind in time & space scattered over the multiverse all the way to the end of time. The technology is on par with what was presented in SWN & the two novels are easily translated over.
"Here was the end of an evolution almost as long as Man's. Its beginnings were lost in the mists of the Dawn Ages, when humanity had first learned the use of power and sent its noisy engines clanking about the world. Steam, water, wind-all had been harnessed for a little while and then abandoned. For centuries the energy of matter had run the world until it too had been superseded, and with each change the old machines were forgotten and new ones took their place. Very slowly, over thousands of years, the ideal of the perfect machine was approached-that ideal which had once been a dream, then a distant prospect, and at last reality: No machine may contain any moving parts. Here was the ultimate expression of that ideal. Its achievement had taken Man perhaps a hundred million years, and in the moment of his triumph he had turned his back upon the machine forever. It had reached finality, and thenceforth could sustain itself eternally while serving him."
Ironically I've found two connections with these novels to two earlier novels that may allow me to connect together two. The Night lands by William Hope Hodgeson & HG Wells Time Machine both seem to underpin parts of these novels. The ideals of the stories all point to possible variations on the destiny of mankind & how we define it. They could well be other timelines where things have gone terribly,terribly wrong. The weird technology the pyramids, the strange religions, the psionics its all there. Perhaps the Great Old Ones crashed the party & things went to seed from there.
So basically using a basically a bibliography that would fit this sort of campaign would look something like this to me :
- The Nightland William Hope Hodgeson
- The City & The Stars & Against The Fall of Night Arthur C. Clarke
- The Shadow Out Of Time HP Lovecraft
- Last & First Men Olaf Stapledon
- The Alien franchise, Prometheus, Blade Runner Firefly, etc
- Classic Science Fiction & 50s films
- Edgar Rice Burroughs Material
- 60s & 70s style exploitation science fiction or fantasy
The cylinders are are the creations of mankind from beyond the pales of time itself. They have been abandon for a very, very, long time. Apex Medical found them & along with Geofront Inc. have been exploiting the technology found within them. They travel on an unknown course between the stars "Flying Dutchmen" style. Now the characters are on their way to them!
Random " Alien" City Finds 1d10 From Within the Cylinder
- A pile of metallic rubbish that reassembles itself into an alien tool kit 1d4 items of unknown use
- 1d4 random credits covered in melted gold
- An alien knife covered in copper based blood & a piece of red cloth from a shirt
- A breathing apperatus with an alien throat fossilized to it
- A brand new med kit & tricorder fully charged & still on
- A M1A1 pulse rifle magazine spent & empty
- A shock prod with a fully charged capacitor
- Broken mono blade sword with a spent energy clip
- Power binders with key looped through on wire
- Alien head with explosive collar still attached