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Friday, March 30, 2012

The Goar

Since most usual domestic animals don't exist on Carcosa, I have started making some that would be more suitable to the setting.

Please forgive my art. I have not actively drawn by hand since the mid 90s. (and my poor paint shop skills at coloring in the scanned in image.)

I have not run DnD for years and like I have mentioned before am converting Carcosa to a home brew system. I will be providing  some simple stats for someone to work with for ODnD since most of the people who play in the Carcosa setting will most likely be using those rules.

Armor Class: 5 [13]
Hit Dice: 3-4
Attack: bite (1D8) or claw (1D6)
Special: None
Move: 14
The Goar appear to be evolved from synapsids. It shares reptilian and mammal traits.

It has a reptilian body, rodent like incisors, boar like tusks and horns like a goat.(plus a few other smaller horns) They also have tufts of thick fur on their chins. Some villagers have domesticated Goars as riding animals. They can move rather fast when they need to. The illustration only an example. There are many subspecies who possess different patterns and colors. Like rodents, Goars need to gnaw on wood or bones to grind down their incisors. These creatures are omnivores, though prefer meat.

Carcosa Calendar

Last night I decided to throw together a calendar system for Carcosa.
This is a work in progress. As I am a bit tired so I might have gotten the moon cycles a bit off. Please let me know if you see any errors with it and feel free to use this in your games if you wish.

Days of the Week: (5 days of week)

Months: (12)
Cesto - 1st, winter begins, Solstice
Ybrii -
Hassak -
Kaydaro - 1st, spring begins, Equinox
Mullus -
Obera -
Eysu - 1st, summer begins, Solstice
Lobra -
Tymoy -
Myrro - 1st, fall begins, Equinox
Lhada -
Sathoth - 34th veil thinnest between dreamlands and world.

408 days per year

Moon Cycles:
@ = full followed by M1 or M2
M1 = Camillia, orbits every 24 days
M2 = Cassilda, orbits every 42 days

Just click the pics for larger calendar images.
Beginning of Year 2...
Wanted to make a framework to design special events, like alignment of planets, eclipses, etc... or rituals that must be done with specific moon cycles.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Purple People Edits

So after I discovered the Carcosa supplement I immediately began looking for more information on it. Many of the blogs I discovered had fun photoshop images of actors in exotic Carcosa colors.
I loved this so here are a couple purple people edits.

Purple woman drives her chariot across a dangerous pteradactyl hunting ground near an old volcano.

A purple axe man in the high altitude cold forests of the Thaggasoth Peaks.

EDIT- Ok, well they are actually more violet, but well just blame that on the lighting from the twin suns.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mad Spire! (work in progress...)

Located in Hex 2205 is the living city of Mad Spire.
Mad Spire is, as the name implies a spiral structure, 720 feet tall (219.4 meters) and is 1850 feet (563.8 meters) across at it's widest point. Some areas of the spire overlap, forming shaded network of caves. Buildings are constructed on the rising incline areas and within the large caves beside them. Some parts of Mad Spire never see sunlight due to the dense collection of buildings obstructing sunlight from within these caves.
Between the levels in the cliff face are various carvings. Some of human nature, some much older and alien. Some individuals make home in the smaller cave structures in the sides that go further into the rock exoskeleton of the living city. Many of these are home to ancient terrors yet to be discovered.

Mad Spire has the largest population (and diversity) of humans on the world of Carcosa.
Nearly two hundred years ago a number of intense threats led to the tribes of the area to form an alliance to survive. The details seem lost, though the tribes built a society together in the ancient ruins of a Serpent Man city.
When the major threat to the various tribes passed, many of the people moved on to their usual distant paranoid village lives. However many stayed and to this day fight for control of the city.
Mad Spire serves as a trade hub for the known world and for characters of different tribes of man to meet up. This of course still does not mean the characters will trust or like each other.
It didn't take long after settling that the tribes learned the city itself was alive, as it slowly began to open mouth pits to consume houses and people. This would have driven off the population had they not learned that these mouths only existed in certain locations on the city. The people began to use these pits as ways of disposing of waste, dead bodies and criminals. Over the decades the city has improved in appearance as it's health continues to grow from being actively fed.
The pit mouths have unusual alchemical properties that Alchemists and Sorcerers may find useful, if they can extract samples without being eaten alive.
Another trait of the pit mouths are that they release a smell that tricks those who smell it into thinking something favorable exists nearby. This is how it used to lead prey to it for consumption. For the inhabitants of Mad Spire, this feature makes for the most pleasant smelling of garbage dumps. This can also lead new arrivals to the city to unfortunate accidents...
The living city also has another positive feature. It pumps up water from underground and out of "springs". Most these are very small, though there are five major springs that flow out and form water falls and provides for a nice oasis surrounding the city.

The city is currently ruled by a Sorcerer named Raxsust Krad'toumn. He has ruled for nearly 130 years and seems not to age. This may be an illusion though. Over time he and his minions have gained access to a wide variety of Zeta (Space Alien) technology, including a few vehicles they have managed to learn how to pilot and numerous reprogrammed robots. Part of this advantage is that Raxsust recruits people who have escaped from Zeta run arcology cities and other areas that Zeta's oversee human populations. Many of these people have experience with the language and technologies, which of course makes them useful. It is also believed he has given a number of Zeta irrationalists safe haven in exchange for knowledge.

Over population, criminals and other undesirables are dealt with by Lord Krad'toumn by capturing and selling these individuals off as slaves. Some are sold in markets to caravan traders, while the rest are sold directly to Moon-Beast slavers. (more details on this at a future point.)

Mad Spire has no King! It is considered blasphemous to say anyone is actually King of the city. Lord Kard'toumn publicly executes anyone who refers to him as "King".
This may be superstition, though Lord Kard'toumn has declared "There is no King but the King who dwells in Carcosa" (in reference to the city of Carcosa). Most speculate that this has been the only reason Mad Spire has existed as long as it has without falling to the Avatar of Hastur.
Though it is not only illegal to declare anyone king in the city (even in jest), the locals will react in terror to anyone declaring such a thing and mob up and kill the one who spoke such. Claims of people speaking such things has led to many a "Witch Hunt" in the city.

Mad Spire has it's own minted coins. This is rare in the world of Carcosa. For my campaign the Mad Spire silver piece is the trade standard for equipment. Though most villages will use barter/trade instead of currency.

Numerous tribal gangs fight for control over sections of the city. Lord Kard'toumn tolerates this as long as the farmer's gardens are not destroyed, the water ways are not poisoned and the major roads are not blocked. When this happens, or the wars get out of hand, he sends in his minions armed with Zeta weapons and ends the conflict.

Work in Progress for the 1st Elevation section of the Mad Spire map:

Monday, March 26, 2012

"The Yellow Jester does not play, but gently pulls the strings. He smiles as the puppets dance, in the Court of the Crimson King."

Saturday, March 24, 2012


Decided Moon-Beasts are gonna be in my Carcosa game. These are not the usual dreamlands version. They have found a way into the waking physical world though some weak spot in the veil between worlds long ago. They stole ancient technologies and reverse engineered them to make various large craters on the surface of the two moons habitable. These craters have artificial gravity, atmosphere and thick clouds. This is also beneficial as when the Moon-Beast slaves try to escape they can't leave the crater area without being exposed to the cold vacuum of space.
The Moon-Beast make use of permanent magical gates between craters and the world below. They make bases near high concentrations of human villages and make use of local domesticated steeds to hunt down new slaves. Sometimes using captured Zeta weapons.
(crude) picture of a Moon-Beast on a local domestic steed of some sort. (better pics at a later point.)

More on this subject, hopefully soon.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Zeta (Space Alien) Rifle

Was trying to think of what the Zeta's (space aliens) weapons would look like. I was playing around a bit in paint shop pro, then decided to go 3D instead. Not sure if its what I am gonna go with, though here is one of the concept ideas.

and as an animated gif.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Aldebaran Solar System, Work in Progress

So here is what I have so far for the solar system of Aldebaran:

Aldebaran Solar System
1 Alpha Tauri I, orange/red giant
2 Alpha Tauri II, red dwarf
3 Thale (may actually be a brown dwarf star)
4 Naotalba
5 Uoht
6 "Carcosa" - moon 1 "Camillia" ,moon 2 "Cassilda"
7 Tassilda
8 Tasylock
9 Thothut
10 Haita
11 "Comet A"
12 "Comet B"
13 "Comet C"
In the real world, Alpha Tauri II is much further away, though that would not work for the "twin suns" mentioned in Cassilda'a Song, as one would most likely appear to be a very bright star in the night sky, or at the very least would not set at the same time. So I just moved it closer.
The planets are named after the mythical (or most likely historical) characters of the world. Though few inhabitants of "Carcosa" will know this.

There is much more planned for detailing the Aldebaran solar system, such as moons, known asteroid belts, names for the comets, etc...

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

"Space Aliens" doing social experiments with the tribes of Carcosa.

So instead of just having the "Space Aliens" (or Zetas as I have been renaming them for my game.) be a typical monster source and randomly abducting people or zapping them with their ray guns, I thought, why not have them manipulate humanity.
A Space Alien advises a council of green men in a remote arcology.

Perhaps have them control individual group types or mix group tribes together in an arcology.
Maybe they convince the humans that there is a plague and they offer them food, shelter and education. They keep them in contained environment and run social tests to see how they can be manipulated or useful. This gives plenty of options for characters to start with some familiarity with the Aliens but are now on the run because they know the truth, or the arcology had an age termination and they are doing the Logan's Run.

Or maybe they indirectly control them by keeping them in Vaults, like in Fallout. The Aliens use their robots and computers to directly train the humans who have lived generations underground. Some of the PCs might escape from a malfunctioning Vault or believed there was no threat outside... (poor character should have stayed put.)

Plant life of Carcosa and Alchemy

I have been making a master list of various plants, minerals and other alchemical items. It is far from done, though figured while I was doing that, I should do some simple illustrations to go along with the list.
Various alchemical plants:

I don't have specific names for these yet, as I was gonna match the pictures to the most suitable items on my list. Still got tons more of these I need to do. I figured if I got some alien plant life drawn up, it will help the players get a better idea of just how weird of a place Carcosa is.
When I can get myself into a drawing mood (not just simple paint shop stuff like above) I hope to draw up some animal life for the setting as well.

Thaggasoth Peaks, work in progress

Starting to detail the Thaggasoth Peaks.

The lighter brown usually suggests hills, while the darker areas with lines (not all have been drawn in yet) indicate the mountain building up elevation. The white areas are the snow line elevations. The light blue are ice or glaciers. The blue/green and purple are fungal forests. The usual green areas are typical tree forests.
The grey areas indicate hardened lava beds.
The castle/citadel markers and village markers represent those from the book.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Typical day on Carcosa?

So as I go about updating the Carcosa map (from Supplement V: Carcosa), I am a bit confused. So if these different tribes of men tend to not trust each other, why do so many different groups have towns and castles near each other? Easier to pillage each other?
I was also wondering why few of the villages were near water...then again with the crazy stuff on Carcosa that might dwell in or near the water I guess it does make sense.

Also with all the Dinosaurs and giant bugs, this has got to be a typical day on Carcosa.

After re-watching those Skull Island scenes from the 2005 King Kong it made me really appreciate just how terrifying Carcosa would be on a day to day basis. Oh lets go get a drink of water...crap, Billy got eaten by a giant leech!

In D&D statistics you probably have to be a third level fighter just to survive crawling out of the womb on Carcosa.

Adding more detail to the Carcosa map.

Spent my free time working on a more detailed version of the Carcosa map. Decided to add the villages, citadels, castles, ruins, etc... from the hex descriptions to the map itself. Also wanted to add the little things, like the minor rivers and creeks that would likely flow from the mountains and hills, as well as glaciers and ice caps of the mountains. Noticed while re-reading the hex descriptions that there is also a lot of surface details that are not shown on the map.

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Green Sands continued...

^^ Here is a map showing where I have placed the green sands in the world of Carcosa.

1606 - Is the location of the delta where a small river has passed though the sands and into Lake Hali. This area will have high amounts of vegetation that is suitable for alchemical purposes.
The plateau sitting in middle of hexes: 2006, 2007 and 2107, contains a mining camp run by Mi-Go who have enslaved local humans. They are hoping to locate some rare Neglith here.
2106 - Spillover where the highland normal desert sands mix with the lower land green sands. This is also a trade route though often plagued by raiders.
2307 - The Castle of the Ulfire mad scientist, (as described in the Carcosa book) sits on this mountain. I hope to detail this individual and his castle at a future point.

The Green Sands Oasis:

Plateaus in the distance among the Green Dunes. Among those Plateaus, Mi-Go use enslaved humans to harvest rare trans-dimensional ores.

It's not much of an update but wanted to post something today.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Green Sands of Aldebaran...

"Bell flight 14 you now can land. See you on Aldebaran. Safe on the green desert sand"
2000 Light Years from Home - The Rolling Stones
(Though I prefer The Danse Society cover.)

As a fan of The Danse Society, I discovered this cover of the song. I had never heard the origional Rolling Stones song prior to this. My introduction to this song happened arround the time I was developing my space campaign years ago and led to me adding "the green desert sands" to my campaign.
In my new campaign the Green Dunes will be located in a number of hexes just east of the city of Carcosa. 
In the original campaign the extra dimensional properties of  Alpha Tauri IV (the world of Carcosa) made that sand suitable for creating "mana processors", allowing robots to manipulate mystical energies. (GURPS Robots)
The Green Sands will have alchemical properties that character's into Sorcery can discover in the new campaign.
Though it was not discovered by the characters (in the old space game), it turns out the sand was a vital component in the creation of Neglithium. An extremely rare greenish gold looking metal that was highly resistant to radiation and other forms of energy, highly sought after in the known galaxy. In the origional campaign it was known that Neglithium was a "transdimensional metal", it possessed properties that were not understood by human science as it coexisted in multiple realities at once. (Like the Mi-go). There were numerous "Trans-metals" and other "Trans-dimensional materials". (At a future point I will update with a list.) It was also discovered (in the old space campaign) that the Serpent Folk had created most (if not all) the trans-metals. (Which the Mi-Go coveted).
In the new campaign all trans-metals will have simpler names. Neglithium will become Neglith, and will be sought by the "space aliens" as a valuable reactor core shielding.

Getting Started.

About twelve years ago I discovered the stories of Hastur, Carcosa and The King in Yellow. It is difficult to explain why, though that particular mythology really drew me in.
Around this time I had started a space based RPG for some friends. It was using the GURPS rules and I had access to a book called Cthulupunk. I ran this campaign off and on over ten years. In that time Aldebaran became a major theme, as did The King in Yellow. During this time I kept running into music and other odd stories that would somehow fit the theme and add to my own view of this mythology. Eventually that campaign ended and there was no more story to tell, yet I had built up so many ideas during that time.
Then about three weeks ago I discover "Supplement V: Carcosa". Then soon after also learn that it has been updated by Lamentation of the Flame Princes. While at this time I cannot afford this update, I have been taking all my old notes and combining them with the Carcosa as seen though the eyes of Geoffrey McKinney. While I have no desire of running it with OD&D rules (or any version of D&D for that matter.), I had been working on a customized version of gaming rules just prior to discovering Supplement V. It's a cut down and simplified mix of older and newer Elric/Stormbring and Runequest. Though the more I have read into McKinney's vision of Carcosa I have modified my rules to adjust for this. Not going to bore you with those details any further. This blog will include my additions to that world, such as new monsters, wildlife, locations, strange alchemy, a bit of weird "steampunk" style things that some inventive humans have developed from that strange alchemy mixed with the junk parts of destroyed alien robots. (Inspired by "mad scientist" of hex 2307). There will of course be those bits and pieces from my old space campaign that will be added in, such as the "Sky Islands" which are orbital debris fields of various aliens ships that have been torn apart and turned into nests by the swarms of Byakhee which live in orbit.
McKinney's use of the Serpent Folk as a major influence in the world of Carcosa's past worked perfect for me. In my old space campaign they were one of the Precursor races, which had one offshoot of the race that focused more on magic and another offshoot that had developed a form of technology. They had distant colonies that were in stasis but awoke from time to time to check in on their old domains. 
At one point I hope to expand out with some crazy space expansion. "Star Lords of the Hyades" seemed like the perfect cheesy old school sci-fi title for it.
Well guess that is enough for now. Hope to have something interesting to post next time of than just me babbling on.