Sunday, August 29, 2021

S3 'Expediation to The Barrier Peaks' by Gary Gygax With The Castles & Crusades Rpg Aligned With The Star Ship Warden Rpg book


So let's pick up where we last left off on this campaign built we've been talking about the Amazing Adventures version of Starship Warden. Ernie Gygax threw his hat into the ring with the following comment; "Ernest Gary Gygax Jr.

The opportunities offered with moving characters to either or both the Empire of the Petal Throne or the Starship Warden. Both have been done with early Greyhawk characters. Jim Ward's own Elf flunky Bombadil is with the Vigilists group in Jim's own game. A crse scroll from a game my father was running for Jim James M. Ward. We have fought EPT creatures in the Dungeon but yet to have a character transfer to the realm.." 
First of all I love Jim Ward's Elven PC Flunky Bombadil, that's awesome right there.  Its gotten me thinking about S3 'Expediation To The Barrier Peaks' by Gary Gygax. The Starship Warden of S3 isn't the same ship as first edition Metamorphis Alpha rpg according to the S3  Drivethrurpg entry; "
"Barrier Peaks" is about a spaceship crashing into the world of Greyhawk. Gygax was very clear is saying that the ship was not the Warden from Metamorphosis Alpha: "The size and the technology in this vehicle should make such speculation quite misplaced, in fact. The downed space ship is far too small, and its science quite different from that of the famed starship Warden." The connection between "Barrier Peaks" and Metamorphosis Alpha is thus more of a thematic one." 
Is this simply a thematic connection or is this simply another space craft that's a part of the Warden's sciencitific expediation fleet?! 
The 'Warden' is actually a biological collection ship. Monster after monster is let go on Greyhawk. The ship is long since abandoned by its occupants.  This brings home the fact that many monsters of AD&D are invasive species from other worlds. The  world of Greyhawk is a part of one of the crossroads of the planes. This module is also one of the possible origins of the mindflayer species. 
This module seems to be an almost homage to Robert Kuntz's famous 'machine level'. The module has many of the same sorts of technologies that we find in Metamorphis Alpha rpg first edition. 
S3 feels like a precursor to Metamorphis Alpha rpg first edition.There's so many points where you can marry the two games through S3. 
With the Starship Warden there's some more options on the table. S3 'Expediation To The Barrier Peaks' by Gary Gygax has no origin point for the 'Warden'.
Could the micro planar technologies that caused  the Human Space Empires collapse also be responsible for the Warden fleet to plunge out of hyperspace. The Empire of the Petal Throne rpg makes it very clear that when M.A.R. Barker's world was cut off from the rest of the planes that many people, alien races, etc. were trapped on Tekumel as well. 
Now its interesting that Ernie states that we fought E.P.T creatures in his dad's dungeon on Greyhawk. This means that not all of the planar gates were cut off from the planes. The door always swings both ways, could E.P.T. PC's find themselves aboard the Starship Warden?! 

In a word, yes! The fact is that some poor party of players might find themselves aboard the Starship Warden. Given the crazy situation that the PC's might find themselves in this might not be that far out of their wheelhouse.  But this begs the question. How many other dimensional gateways lead to planes cut off completely from the Human Space Empires?! Are there literally hundreds of derelict space craft hanging in hyperspace with undead crews waiting for some poor adventurers to stumble upon them. Let's talk about the fact that the 'Solar Burn'setting & timeline lines up quite nicely with the Starship Warden timeline. What happens if the powers in charge of Solar Burn mount an expediation to actually find the Warden & stumble upon Greyhawk's Warden instead?! 

Things can go from bad to worse as the expediation isn't prepared for the horrors waiting for them inside S3's Warden starship. And this might actually be a warm up for what's about to come! 
And this brings home another point, the ancient gatesways used by the Human Space Empire might in point of fact still be operational way at the back of beyond especially in a setting like 'The Wilderlands of High Fantasy' where the wilderness is so vast that just about anything can & does exist in the back end of beyond. 
There may also be various planar versions of the crash site of the Warden such as in the Wilderlands, Greyhawk, Blackmoor, etc. 
The hyperspace shunt of the planar collapse of the Human Space Empire echoed across the multiverse caused many consquences throughout time & space. This is something we see time & again in Science Fantasy & Sword & Sorcery game settings. 

Judges Guild has several adventures that make this sort of a campaign very easy. Classic JG was easy to insert into whatever campaign you need. The Wilderlands 'wilderness' is rife with adventure hooks that can be exploited to fit your home campaign  narrative. 
And this is where classic gaming succeeds on so many levels. Easy to adapt, fully modular, and even easy to fit, these are some of the characteristics of classic gaming supplements. 

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