The New World is the grave of Lemuria, the greatest of all nations. The barbaric tribes that live in the New World now walk upon its bones, the ruins of temples and palaces, ignorant of the wisdom and power buried beneath their feet. When a colony from the kingdom of a distant continent settles on the shores of the New World, whispers of Lemuria flutter through the winds. Adventurers from the colony find the ruins and marvel at their beauty. Scholars listen to the legends told by tribal elders and connect them to ancient stories of a lost empire. Native warriors and mystics commune with spirits awoken by the colony’s arrival. The Ruins of Lemuria stir the blood of the ambitious and curious. Soon expeditions will be mounted to crack open the dusty tombs leading into the Stygian depths to learn their secrets and plunder their treasures. Little do these adventurers know that the doom that befall mighty Lemuria waits to greet them.
The Ruins of Lemuria describes a massive network of ruins that spread across the entire continent of the New World, the remnants of a powerful civilization more advanced in science and magic than any other in the history of the world. Fragments of their knowledge lie deep within the ruins, along with powerful magical items and vast amounts of treasure. Needless to say, if the knowledge or magic items are found and brought back to civilization, it could change the course of history. Lemurian magic and technology is still more advanced than anything else the world has ever known. A few adventurers armed with this power can end wars, curse diseases or doom their own civilization. This supplement provides a framework to incorporate the Ruins into most high fantasy RPG campaigns. Its contents include:
History of Lemuria: An overview of old Lemuria, its culture, its achievements and its impact on the world. Several conflicting legends are told so a GM can pick which one is the truth and which ones are mere folk tales.
Wisdom of the Ancients: Just how far advanced was the magic and science of Lemuria? Instead of presenting a single view, the knowledge of Lemuria is divided into several categories, with varying levels of accomplishment. You can determine just how powerful the Lemurians were when they fell and how much of an impact their knowledge would have if it were rediscovered. Several artifacts from the Ruins are described.
The Ruins of Lemuria: “happy is the tomb where no wizard hath lain, and happy the town at night whose wizards are all ashes” An overview of the Ruins, how far they extend across the continent and how they are connected to each other. Entire ecosystems have evolved in the ruins of strange creatures, magical constructs and undead. Damaged magical artifacts irradiate certain sections with hazardous energies. Untouched archives of knowledge just wait to be discovered. There is great splendor and greater danger lurking in the depths far below the surface.
The Legend of Lemuria: What happens in your campaign depends on how many characters actually know about the Ruins and are able to act upon that knowledge. Perhaps only a few sages or tribal elders have any understanding of Lemuria in which case the adventurers can exploit the Ruins without fear of rivals. But if word gets out, there could be a gold rush of sorts, as treasure hunters, mercenaries and adventurers from around the world descend upon the Ruins in order to stake their claim.
The Doom that came to Lemuria: What happened to Old Lemuria? Several possible apocalypses are listed along with its impact on the current world. Perhaps the doom was a onetime occurrence, a freak accident that has no significance in the current world. Perhaps the gods struck down Lemuria for their hubris with a horde of demons. Perhaps Lemuria collapsed from internal strife. The cause of Lemuria’s downfall is still significant because those that plunder the Ruins might bring the Doom back without realizing it.
Here Be Monsters: A listing of potential NPCs and monsters in the ruins. They are inhabitants of the ruins, tribal dungeoneers, mercenary explorers hired by the princes of the Old World and even a few immortal citizens of Old Lemuria. This section focuses on their personalities and background instead of game mechanics so they can easily be used in any system.
Staging A Dramatic Dungeon Crawl: A series of potential encounters, plot hooks, scenarios and campaign models that use the ruins. Cryptic puzzles, gory battles, daring rescues and cunning intrigue can all happen in the Ruins. Adventurers not only have to be wary of the guardians and traps of the Ruins but other colonists and natives envious of whatever treasures the adventurers find. Life is cheap compared to the priceless value of the knowledge of Old Lemuria.
Bringing Lemuria to Life: Even if you don’t use the New World as your campaign world, you can easily place the Ruins in nearly any fantasy setting or even take elements from this source book and use them in another lost civilization. This section provides advice on using Lemuria in your campaign.
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