Thursday, June 20, 2013

Lost Cities in the Modern World

The modern world is very well connected. Technology is everywhere. Spies are all about us. Our movements tracked. It's easy to imagine that there is nothing new under the sun. That we know all we shall about our world.

Then we find out, often, that no, that's not quite true. How about the discovery of a lost Maya city? Sure, the rain forest has a lot to do with its concealment all these years, but most fantasy settings play host to far more dangerous and hostile terrain than a rain forest. When seeing the numerous "lost cities" it's easy to grow skeptical. To think cynically that its an unoriginal idea. That it's all been done before.

While not as recent, another "Lost City" discovery leads to one of the many 'cities of gold' that the early Spanish and English explorers sought out in their travels in the Western side of the world. These cities often have heroes associated with them as well as their own legends that are at least fairly well known by the locals.

An article linked to from that one, shows a perfect 'necromantic' trap in the form of 80 skeleton warriors.

Forests are not the only place where one can lose a city though. A far easier "buy" in is an city that has fallen not only to ruin, but into the sea. Ruins of this nature are being discovered on a fairly 'regular' basis if one were to label the frequency of findings.

In a fantasy campaign, the players may be part of an exploration party that's requested by one of the 'friendly' races of the sea such as merfolk, sea elves, or tritons. They may want the 'muscle' that the players can provide and in exchange, provide them with magic that can allow them to survive underwater. Perhaps even turning them into the race in question for the duration of their hunting of the haunted halls.

The world is still filled with wonder and if we can mine it for our games, all the better.