Thursday, February 6, 2020

Crack & Lash Blackmoor & Beyond - Using A0-A4: Against the Slave By Lords David "Zeb" Cook, Allen Hammack, Harold Johnson, & Tom Moldvay For Your Old School Campaigns

Taking a long look at that slave lords organization from A0-A4  Against the Slave Lords specifically the collected 'super module' that came out way back in 2016 or so. I think that slave lords is a perfect example of a Pulp era Swords & Sorcery secret villain organization. They & the organization's members are specifically like a revolving door of scum & villainy. The slave lords are the perfect organization to use as a planes reaching villains who are out to exploit the masses.

In the history of Greyhawk the slave lords are inimical to the classic setting's history & peoples. They are the exploitable resources to the masters & monsters of the slave lords line up especially from info from the D&D wiki ;

"In 574 CY, Klim and his allies returned to Suderham, where they slew its last king, Roderic and took control of the town. By 576, the organization had become known as the Slave Lords, though its ruling council was still known as the Nine. Known members of the Nine from 576-580 include:
From 576 to 580 CY, the Slave Lords thrived, raiding for slaves in a number of towns on the Gearnat coast, making slaves one of the Pomarj's most valuable exports. The Slave Lords' operations came to an end in 580, due to the machinations of adventurers hired by a coalition of legal authorities known as the Lords of Gearnat, and the destruction of Suderham by a volcanic eruption.
Other known members of the Slave Lords during this period, who were not members of the Nine, include:

When the overall details of the slave lords are devolved into & analyzed they could be easily used in say Mystara. Demos Sachlas has an excellent little article on the vaults of Pandius site on using the Slave Lords series on classic Mystara called  Setting modules A1-4/Slave Lords in the Gulf of Hule.

What makes the slave lords so universally despised is the fact that their villainy rings true across the classic D&D settings. So much so that I've seen multiple incarnations of the slavers used in campaign cycles & adventure paths.

Piazza member BotWizo had a fantastic idea in the[Adapting Modules] A1-4 Scourge of the Slave Lords  adapting the following ; "Do you have a plan to bring the whole mega campaign path to Mystara?
This would be;
Temple of Elemental Evil T1-4
Slavers A1-4
Queen of Spiders GDQ1-7

I had set this path in Mystara in the late 80s so now I have to see if I still have notes on what I did and where things were set.
At the time I did not have Gazetteers, I was just using "known world" material, I didn't know about the setting being called Mystara until later.

So now the implementation of setting this path in Mystara probably would be much different than my first approach.

Off the cuff, Temple somewhere in known world or thyatis, Slavers on or near Isle of dawn, Queen of spiders (location ?) .

I would also change the make-up of opponents in some of the products to be more elemental themed throughout."

Personally as a dungeon master I'd go further back then that & use some of the time & plane slip magic that the slavers have access to & drop them right into classic Dave Arneson & David J Richie's  DA1 Blackmoor. 

The reason why this works is the time frame of 
Dave Arneson & David J Richie's  DA1 Blackmoor.  The slavers easily slip into the Blackmoor setting without a nod & wink continuing to carry on their nefarious business with hardly a nod & a wink! 
I've used this scenario countless times with Dave Arneson & David J Richie's  DA1 Blackmoor. A couple of mini game campaigns with this set up & it works like a charm. The players loath & hate the slavers with a burning passion. And these modules fit the times & the setting of Blackmoor like an armored glove. Smashing & destroying one small part of the slave lords operation isn't going to be the end of it as we shall see coming up.

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