How does one connect up two very desperate pieces of campaign weirdness?! This is the current question today on my mind with my Cha'alt/Godbound campaign. But,but, the Godbound are incredibly powerful beings of mythological roleplaying. They are PC's with divine powers able to shape the very nature of reality!? Well not really.. They are powerful adventurers imbued with the powers of the divine in a universe with a fallen Heaven. At least in my campaigns they are but the three divinities from Tom Moldvay's B4 The Lost City are still in the mix but its Zargon whose pulling the strings. This article on Tom Moldvay's classic adventure by Bell of Souls has some interesting tid bits even though its for fifth edition;
"Centuries ago, Cynidicea was the capital of a rich and fertile kingdom. Its people reclaimed much land from the desert, especially during the reign of King Alexander-the last and greatest king of Cynidicea. Upon King Alexander’s death, a huge pyramid was raised in his honor. This pyramid was the largest and most important building in the city. The fall of Cynidicea began on the day that workers, digging under the great pyramid, chanced upon the lair of a strange monster called Zargon. Zargon was roughly humanoid in shape, though larger than most humans. In place of arms and legs it had twelve tentacles. Its head was that of a giant lizard, with a large black horn in the middle of its forehead. Zargon killed most of the workers, then began hunting prey at night through the streets of Cynidicea. The city guard was not able to kill the monster. At last, the city rulers began sending criminals from the jails into the pyramid for Zargon to feed on. In time, a strange cult arose that worshipped the monster as a god. The cult viewed the monster’s victims as religious sacrifices. The worship of the ancient gods of Cynidicea- Gorm, Usamigaras, and Madarua-was forsaken in favor of the worship of the monster Zargon. Finally, most of the citizens of Cynidicea worshipped it. The worshippers of Zargon began to look for strange pleasures. They sought oblivion in rare wines and bizarre drugs. Workers no longer repaired the irrigation ditches. Rich land turned into desert. The army lost its discipline. People outside the city rebelled, or moved away as chaos spread outward from Cynidicea. Later, barbarian warriors stormed over the walls and destroyed the city. The only people of Cynidicea who survived its destruction were those who had fled underground to the vast catacombs* under the city. There, led by Priests of Zargon, the Cynidiceans tried to rebuild the city."
That series of vast catacombs under the city is the key to linking Cha'alt with Cynidicea. Zargon hasn't been idle at all. It knows that there's a clock ticking on Cha'alt & Cynidicea. That clock is the California rift in my campaign & the fact that the cult of Zargon has been quietly & effectively taking out some of the competition between game sessions!
Sure its all fun & games until you start to realize that the animal masked people in B4 are straight outta of a story that Robert E.Howard would have written. Then there's the fact that modern San Franciso is ripe for a take over by an army of religious fanatics. And there you go. The Cynidiceans control San Francisco & most of the East Bay area.
The ancient gods of Cynidicea- Gorm, Usamigaras, and Madarua are still worshipped by the Hyperboreans among whom they are minor dieties. They see the Cynidiceans as upstarts & a dangerous influence to their plans of conquest. The Hyperborean forces have gained foot holds in South Bay & the Peninsula. The fighting is fierce & sometimes door to door.
What about the technological influence of Cha'alt & its warp down in Las Vegas?!
What about it?
When you start looking at the Black Pyramid & its influence of cult, weirdos, & armies of scvengers?! That's another front in this war actually.. The demon worms & their forces are being held in check for the moment by the gods of Earth & their armies.
Xanthium-183 has hit the people of Arizonia hard & there are large 'masses' of people who stare into the sky for hours & days at a clip. Their eyes glazed in the fuchsia on fuchsia of total Zoth hive mind bonding. But who or what is feeding on them?!
Masked Cynidicean spies & priests circle among Arizona but they are found & sacrificed to unknown gods! Can the adventurers wrap up California in time to get back to Las Vegas?! Or is all lost?! And what are the rumors of King Alexander's ghost seen in the darkness of the deserts between Vegas & California?
The deserts between Vegas & Arizonia are filled with unstable planar warps that open. Here's where I think that the Adventurer,Conqeuror, King rpg books the AX4: Ruined City of Cyfandir (ROC) book,AX3: Capital of the Borderlands, & finally Secrets of the Nethercity might be perfectly slotted into the campaign with no one being the wiser.
The clash between religion, economics, etc. all within the context of an on going campaign might take years to get through. But I'm really enjoying the wild ride that that this has taken us on this year!
Happy New Years everyone!