Hearkenwold

Discuss user created adventure modules
Pongo
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Pongo »

Just catching up - I really enjoyed reading the retrospective a couple of pages back Dorateen! This really has been an impressive endeavor.

Also excited for Sinestra. I've always had a thing for desert adventures.
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

Thanks! Great to hear back from you. There is shaping up to be quite a bit of desert content, as this is an area the party has to contend with. It is fun working on thematic locations like this one.
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

I have the next monthly update for Hearkenwold coming out this weekend. But in the meantime, I just uploaded a new video for the Knights of the Chalice 2 version. The most recent build 1.57 added weather effects (rain, leaves falling, snow, etc.) and water animations. These elements are showcased as the party explores the map around a lake, and fights an Aboleth in the water.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmV57Ulsd-8
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

March Update

Last month was short but I was still able to finish off that Psionic adventure, which I had started at the end of last year. What I like about this particular content is that it serves dual purposes. The location could be somewhere for the party to explore, fight monsters and find treasure with the Guildmaster himself treated as an enemy. Or the characters might choose to ally with him, and join his exiled association. If so, it will open up a task just like the other guilds. And a wizard party member can return to learn their title based on current level.

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In addition, I completed a new cave dungeon that can be found while exploring along the river. Here is one potential problem the party might need to overcome. Note, a halfling could have been a way to circumvent this obstacle, but he doesn't seem happy about it.

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Here is a screenshot showing a battle with some Dire Rats. These are more advanced rats, and have the AI behavior to target characters with the worst armor class. They also have a chance to cause disease upon a successful hit.

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The good news, with this stuff out of the way, I can concentrate fully one the rest of the campaign over the next few months. I will be looking to finish up around June, holding to the release schedule I had intended.
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

April Update

Last month, I continued with an area that is designed for higher level characters, awaiting players who are able to follow the main adventure path this far. I do enjoy world building and expanding the larger game map, and can now introduce a region called The Wild Plateau. Its more scholarly name is Hathgar Wiles, which has been translated as "Wild Highlands". This is an unwelcoming environment that starts just south of the elven Serion Forest. A chain of mountains marches along the east side of the plateau, one so fearsome even the elves dare not name it. Even more inhospitable, a cluster of volcanos rise at the other of the plateau, known as the Daemon Cones.

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The region is the stage for warring factions of creatures including Mountain Lions. And the party is likely cross these blood thirsty beasts.

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There are also Pyro Snakes to contend with, an entirely different hazard for wandering characters. I recall first seeing these monsters in the Gold Box game Pools of Darkness. Here they make another appearance, although toughened up to challenge a more advanced party. Note that a ranger has the conversation option to correctly identify the creature as well as warn there will be extra fire damage when hit.

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I still have encounters to finish on these maps, and also as part of a cave system attached to the area. Something I have not talked about much, there is a broader, deeper narrative that is part of the Hearkenwold campaign, events taking place in the background. Some clues about the characters involved and the source of all this strife have been scattered throughout the module. But here, this is one of those looming moments where things get shaken up a bit. It is satisfying to see these treads of the underlying story come together.

However, in the meantime, I am going to spend the next few weeks starting a separate boat adventure. It is a multi-deck sailing vessel, which will be an alternative path for the player to explore. More on the later!
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

May Update

If nautical nonsense be something you wish, then this should be a good update.

I have completed work on a new location/adventure that will involve a voyage aboard The Crimson Cutlass. A mighty sailing vessel that can be found docked along the shores of the Sea of Venum. If an experienced party has progressed through the Hearkenwold campaign this far, they will just need to figure out a way to board this ship. Whether or not that is a good idea, will be up to the player to decide.

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The maps I created for the ship itself combine abstract design with following a reasonable schematic for a boat's layout. So there are multiple decks and sections to visit, as well as a soaring crows nest. When above deck, the weather effects will persist and you can watch the waves rolling by.

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Here is an example of using a "first person" backdrop image when the player is presented with some narration text. In these places, rather than just transition the party up and down the decks, I think it helps orientate the player and ground them in the setting, which is a ship in this case.

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Sailors are a superstitious lot, aren't they.

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Here's some equipment the party can be find. Might be helpful along this voyage.

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I don't want to give away if bad things will happen while on the Crimson Cutlass, but this is a role-playing game, so naturally some adversity should be expected. Specifically, in the form of a band of sahuagin marauders. These aquatic creatures make their appearance for the first time in the upcoming Hearkenwold release, and they are featured in several of the new areas. However, to keep things interesting, there are different enemy types that include sahuagin rangers, priestess and the large four-armed baron with four attacks.

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Over the next few weeks, I need to finish the Plateau caves I had started previously, as well as the last remaining parts of the desert town Sinestra. This is likely going to take me into June. But if I can get everything done and run through all the new content, then I should be able to post the updated module at the start of summer. Perfect time to hit the water.
cartons
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by cartons »

I'll be there, cap'n!
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

cartons wrote: Thu May 18, 2023 8:04 pm I'll be there, cap'n!
Aye, hopefully the journey will meet expectations. I'm just finishing a few last things in the module, and aiming for a mid to late June release.
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

June Update

I should have the updated module ready in a couple of weeks. A few final things to take care of, and play through for testing. In the meantime, here is a video of the party sailing on the River Astar. The characters have already aquired a suitable boat, and the video picks up with the party on the water.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pBLx-x4UMq4

Note, the encounter, can be avoided with a successful dc check.

The new content will include dozens of new maps, new creatures, both foes and friends to meet.
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Dorateen
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Re: Hearkenwold

Post by Dorateen »

I have just posted the lates version of the Hearkenwold module, now available to download. The file can be found here:

https://neverwintervault.org/project/ic ... earkenwold

As always, if anyone has an existing saved game in progress, the Hearkenwold saves folder can be copied over and placed in the new saves folder. This is still using build 203 of the IceBlink engine, so for those who have been working with the latest build, only the module folder need be copied from the compressed file.

There are three primary purposes for this update as follows:
  • Continues the main adventure, introducing a new desert town called Sinestra
    Adds a Psionic themed adventure, which also functions as an alternate guild quest for wizard player characters
    New wilderness locations introduced along the River Astar with associated conten
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Altogether there are dozens of new maps, enemies and items that further expands the campaign.

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I have also updated the world map. Empty white spaces have been replaced with a general terrain tiles, which represents what can realistically be expected to find in those areas. The framed, more detailed squares are the actual playable areas in game, including the new locations introduced in this update. The plan has always been to eventually fill the entire map with explorable content.

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