Monday, May 7, 2012

Enigmundia: A Different Take on Mystara's Thyatis

Enigmundia's Karameikos is Zan Lasario. It is colonized by a fantasy Spain analogue, rather than a Byzantium / Romanesque empire like Thyatis.

So what of the Emperor of Thyatis, who rose from the ranks of the gladiators? How do we handle him?

First off, since there are several modules in which gladiators figure prominently, I'd be loathe to remove them entirely. Furthermore, I particularly enjoy the secret role they apparently play in preventing monsters from the Underworld from emerging into the light of Thyatian streets, so I here's what I come up with:

Fencing + Bullfighting with monsters + arena dungeon crawls


Instead of the traditional gladitorial weaponry and armor, we use at sabres and foils and daggers. We approach the various gladitorial schools as different styles and schools of swordfighting. There are master swordsmen and master swordsmakers; families of styles and odd orphaned counterstyles; there are butchers and artists that all take to the arena in duels of skill and honor.

Bullfighting with monsters

But they don't always fight each other. As in Thyatis, they prepare themselves to fight against creatures of the Underworld; many of the battles in the public arena are against monsters who have wandered up from the depths into the traps of the Empire. Their deaths at the hands of individuals and teams in the arena is reminiscent of bullfighting and the Roman battles against lions and tigers and wild creatures from far off lands.

Arena Dungeon Crawls

Once a year, in the Grand Arena of the Empire, a new dungeon design is realized in stone and wood. Creatures rare and wild are released into it a day early to find their homes, while larger chambers house monsters both intelligent, exotic, and deadly. Masked teams from different schools are sent into the arena's dungeon to fight against the monsters, to find the hidden entrance to the central chamber, and defeat and kill the foul criminal swordsman within.


  1. I like this take. It's neat way to make the elements fit your new conception.

  2. Nice. One additional twist could be that the 'bullfighting' with monsters is like the Portuguese style. The 'bull' isn't killed, the performance is all about the courage and flair of the fighters.

  3. @Trey: Thanks!
    @Dariel: That's an interesting twist, particularly for the human-to-human duels in the arena, which really shouldn't be to the death. They

  4. That reminds me of my last Barsoom adventure, where Marc Reyes played a character who'd specialized in making a living as an arena fighter. His moves were flashy but did little damage, and very good for defense. When it came to a real fight (green men attacking from one side, white apes from another), he had a little difficulty adjusting to a fight where quick kills were needed.

  5. Did you use Vivid for this game as well?


That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.

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