Mor Aldenn Ley Lines… and another map!

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To celebrate the newly revised Mor Aldenn maps, I’ve decided to post a little preview of chapter 4: Ley Lines of Mor Aldenn. You’ll also find a preview of the ley lines map below! The ley lines map is, of course, a part of the revised map pack! Enjoy!

Ley Lines

The ley lines of the Ossindrillon are channels of primal energy focused from the life and death and turning seasons within the realm. This energy is useful for a variety of purposes to those who know how to use it. Many stories exist for how these lines originated, but they have been associated with mages, druids, and fey for as long as anyone can remember. Some of the villagers outside of Mor Aldenn call these lines “faerie roads” and hesitate to so much as cross them for fear of offending the fair folk.

All ley lines can be tapped for energy to help a character with the right feats or other resources to enhance certain magical actions. In addition, most lines also manifest unique properties effective without any sort of channeling. The nature of these properties depends heavily on what the line’s affinity is; they usually cause the line’s energy to freely enhance related actions such as spells or skill-using actions without any thought or effort from the person performing it. When a spell is imbued with a metamagic quality in this way, the spell does not use up a higher level spell slot or take longer to cast.

Special magical sites, similar to ley lines but limited to a single locale, are known as places of power. These places can serve as anchor points for ley lines and are often more powerful and better-known than true ley lines. For most purposes, a place of power is a ley line in its own right, whether or not it is located within a larger ley line. When places of power and/or ley lines overlap, all their properties have their full effect in the area.

A given ley line generally covers entire small locales, but not surrounding lands, being less than a quarter mile across. There are many separate lines cutting through Ossindrillon, but a significant number form a focal point at Mor Aldenn. They can sometimes be spotted on a map due to the straight line they form between two or more places of power, but rumors persist of minor or long-stretching lines that have curves or gaps within them. Aside from a few famous ones, the location of a ley line is usually esoteric knowledge—conventional maps are of little help, due to the fact that magical sites joined to ley lines are often themselves little-known.

Different legends claim the lines were always here, were created by ancient fey kingdoms now lost to the world, or were forged by the mysterious Trelmyrian archwizards. The only constant is that they have played a role in many momentous events as resources or signs of change. They have a constant connection to the recurring yet ever-changing turning of the seasons, a connection which causes them to respond to the ebb and flow of time and fate. Or, perhaps their sheer timeless, magical gravity allows them to curve that flow. Perhaps the relationship goes both ways. Whatever the truth, ley lines often herald times of change by growing more powerful, much as important alignments of the stars often happen simultaneously with momentous events. Aldennian mages whisper that only the great master of the Tower of Divination yet remembers the proper way to read their stirrings.

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Here is an example of some of the rules that accompany the ley lines chapter.

The Cairn Line

Perception DC to Sense: 20

Location: Leading south from Tower Hill. (Knowledge [geography or nature] DC 25)

Features: This line is known for the numerous ancient stone structures, including not only cairns but also megalithic circles, standing along it. Some are used for druidic rituals, while some are haunted by fey and undead spirits. (Knowledge [history, nature, or religion] DC 20)

The fey and undead spirits haunting the cairns in the cairn line are said to crave the reverence they once received from the peoples of Ossindrillon but have lost in modern times. (Knowledge [history, nature or religion] DC 25)

Properties: Transmutation spells are cast at +2 caster level. (Knowledge [arcana] DC 25)

Living creatures in the area also gain a +2 insight bonus on Craft, Disguise, and Disable Device checks and a +1 insight bonus on Combat Maneuver checks. (Knowledge [arcana, local, or nature] DC 25)

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And the map, of course…

New map of Mor Aldenn… by Andrew Law!

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Time to get the Headless Hydra Games blog going again… and what better place to start than with a new map of Mor Aldenn, the City of Mages! You might ask yourself, why an all new map?

Honestly, when I decided to work on a new and expanded setting guide, I knew that I had to make Mor Aldenn even bigger. Mor Aldenn was never very big and more the size of a small town than a small city. This new map matches my expectations of what I originally intended. I also wanted to change the location of some of the important locations, like the Tower Hill and Horse Downs.

This map has actually been created in a very unique way – you can’t really see it in the finished result, if you didn’t know it, but I actually created 20-25 versions, building the map from the timeline. Starting with the very first settlers of course and then jumping 10-15 years ahead in time, making a new map. Yes, this was time-consuming, but it also made the map a 100 times better than what it would have been. Things makes sense now.

I had almost given up on finding a new cartographer for this project, when suddenly Andrew Law appeared! I remembered him from the amazing Freeport map, but what really sold me on him was the maps on his website. His style would be perfect for Mor Aldenn! And it was! Andrew has really taken the assignment seriously and has even made his mark on the setting.

Well, enough talk, here is a preview of the final map!

 

As with the other maps of the Mor Aldenn setting, this map will also be available in a small map pack including a colour and greyscale version!

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