The once quiet and quaint halfling community of Underdell rests along the Old Road near the Salt Mire. Steeped in tradition and idleness, the Underdellians found themselves unprepared to deal with the horrors of the plague outbreak in nearby Ashford. Terror gripped Underdell, tearing apart the strong bonds of family and friendship. Fear and paranoia took root in the halflings’ hearts as they tried to escape sickness and death. As Underdell falls apart, a vile halfling bandit has used the chaos to take control of Underdell, enforcing a strict martial law. As neighbour turns on neighbour, a group of bandits terrorize merchant caravans traveling through Ashlar, raiding with impunity and aided by a rich noble. The Underdellians, their smiles and laughter turned to tears and hopelessness, live in fear of another plague outbreak and the harsh punishment of the bandits who insist they are protecting and enriching the village.
Storied Languard—capital of Ashlar and its greatest city—stands hard against Hard Bay’s turbulent, stormy waters. To the north lies the Mottled Spire’s brooding spray-drenched mass, the curse-haunted ruins of Greystone and Gloamhold’s doom-wreathed halls. Ashlar’s greatest—indeed only—city, Languard is a noisy, dirty place. Here, amid broad, muddy streets teeming with life and shadow-mantled, danger-filled alleyways there is little beneath the sun that cannot be had somewhere—for a price.
Few Languardians overly concern themselves with the brooding terrors lurking within Gloamhold’s halls, but for others, the legendary, benighted ruin draws them to Languard as a moth to a flame. For within Languard’s stout walls live, plot and scheme a surprising number of adventurers, freebooters and mercenaries all lured here by the treasures said to lie but a scant few miles to the north.
Dunstone’s granite walls sprawl lazily across a hilltop south of the massive Mottled Spire. In bygone times, monsters sallied from the Mottled Spire’s twisted canyons, their onslaughts only stopped by the brave Dunstonian forces. Now after generations of quiet, the town’s once formidable moat is used by grazing sheep and playing children. The insular community has become peaceful but peace has led the town to become stuck in its old ways. A new ruler seeks to slough of Dunstone’s years of quiet and idleness to usher the town into a new era. Guilds practice their crafts, preparing to send their goods throughout the Duchy of Ashlar. Yet, the Mottled Spire and the environs beyond are never quiet. A vile creature has emerged from Gloamhold’s depths to prey on the unsuspecting townsfolk.
Gloamhold just got an awesome five-star + seal of approval review from Endzeitgeist. I’m shamelessly indulging myself by posting most of his conclusion:
Creighton Broadhurst is a true master of concise writing: The sheer attention to detail and evocative concepts evoked within these pages is amazing. Via a scant few words, he manages to conjure up the weight of aeons, the gravity of history grinding down the accomplishments of bygone eras. If anything, this, to me, feels like the design-incarnation of the old Ozymandias-sonnet. The sense of an ancient world waiting to be explored, of untold stories long gone, the sense of antiquity that is so incredibly hard to convey – Creighton nails it absolutely perfectly. Gloamhold is a ruin; it is a place where the world has moved on; it is not a deserted remnant, though. Instead, this book provides a toolkit to make the overall complex your own; it establishes the tone and themes of the complex perfectly and provides a wide array of diverging challenges you can start pondering, as the complex and its depths beckons.
This does *FEEL* like an old-school dungeon in the best of ways, exemplifying the virtues of old-school, while not shying away from the advancements made within the gaming-world. In short: This is an amazing sourcebook for the complex; it has me rather stoked to explore the premises and the Ashlar\’s wilderness and promises to be an excellent representation of what a mega-dungeon could and should deliver. I should also mention that this is a great read. I am not kidding when I\’m saying that I actually had fun reading this book, and when you\’re reading as much RPG-material as I do, that\’s not an occurrence you\’ll feel daily anymore. In short: This is amazing. Support it. Get it. I can\’t wait for more Gloamhold. 5 stars + seal of approval. If you\’ve been looking for that traditional, old-school, Greyhawk-ish style (not Castle Greyhawk – the setting!), then this will have you smile from ear to ear.
The Gloamhold Campaign Guide got its first (five-star) review! Here’s my favourite bit:
This is a great product for anyone interested in running an old school, gritty, sandbox sort of a game. I’ve been anticipating the release of Gloamhold for several months, and it does not disappoint. I really like the gloomy feel of this place for a megadungeon setting and the space it allows for me to continueu to develop this to my own taste.