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 Undermountain Boxed Set 1991

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
The Fallen Posted - 11 Mar 2007 : 04:55:09
Hi and well met!

I'm a newbie who has a question for Ed Greenwood... it pertains to the first Undermountain Boxed set from 1991. In the boxed set, many rooms are left empty for the DM to describe... in your own FR campaign, did you have all these areas already developed? Or was it more a matter of just having ideas for the areas that were not detailed on the map (Orc tribe over there, kobold warren over there, etc...) I'm very curious as to how much of Undermountain was developed in your personal campaign? Was it more than what went into the boxed set, if so, how much more and why was it never published?

I'm a big Undermountain fan and am curious about the dungeon...


Take care,
Rich

Mod edit: Moved to the correct shelf.
8   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Strixy1374 Posted - 06 Apr 2020 : 20:48:41
Delwa, coincidentally there is another snafu (at least in my pdf) on the same page. Room #11, The Hall of Keeping Kings. Bottom of first column is boxed text. The start of column 2 is "around each stone seat resist normal dispel magic attempts, withstanding anything short of a limited wish." Would you happen to have what I am missing from this page?
Dalor Darden Posted - 12 Dec 2019 : 04:01:09
Thank you so much! The text didnít make it clear that a party has 6 full turns before the bulk of the drow arrive.
Delwa Posted - 12 Dec 2019 : 01:56:12
quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

[REZ SCROLL]

So, I found a snafu BETWEEN page 26 and 27 detailing area #12 of Level One.

On page 26 it starts all well and good describing the room, and ends with:

quote:

...The well-trained guards are alert - they cannot be surprised by any intruders, although invisibility would aid a PC in approaching very close before detection.


But when you look to page 27 there is an obvious loss of text! Page 27 starts with:

quote:

the city above, and elven magical knowledge in the area. This interrogation, a cruel magical procedure, draws on the magic of the altar and leaves the captive feebleminded. This procedure is something Essra does to any captive, especially "arrogant, mewling adventurers like [the PCs]!


It starts mid-sentence...

Does anyone know what the missing text is by any chance? Is my copy defective or something?



Good catch. My PDF of the book has the same error. But my physical copy has an extra paragraph or so that reads:
quote:

"The drow are a foreguard for a female drow priestess, Essra, who arrives in the chamber six turns after the party first arrives. She plans to interrogate the elven captive about knowledge of the drow in"


then the text continues to pg 27 as you have posted.
Dalor Darden Posted - 11 Dec 2019 : 22:35:33
[REZ SCROLL]

So, I found a snafu BETWEEN page 26 and 27 detailing area #12 of Level One.

On page 26 it starts all well and good describing the room, and ends with:

quote:

...The well-trained guards are alert - they cannot be surprised by any intruders, although invisibility would aid a PC in approaching very close before detection.


But when you look to page 27 there is an obvious loss of text! Page 27 starts with:

quote:

the city above, and elven magical knowledge in the area. This interrogation, a cruel magical procedure, draws on the magic of the altar and leaves the captive feebleminded. This procedure is something Essra does to any captive, especially "arrogant, mewling adventurers like [the PCs]!


It starts mid-sentence...

Does anyone know what the missing text is by any chance? Is my copy defective or something?
Purple Dragon Knight Posted - 11 Mar 2007 : 12:54:35
Ah, the glories of Undermountain!

Back in high school, I remember DMing my friends for almost three full years in the said ruins, and after all that time they hadn't reached the 'end' of level 3...

Ah, those were the days!
Faraer Posted - 11 Mar 2007 : 07:36:33
This post from Ed to REALMS-L in 1997 -- I quote the part about Undermountain -- partly answers your question.
quote:
My original Undermountain consists of 9 main levels, with 12 fully-developed sub-levels, and a few 'sidebars' (areas reached by teleport gates that could be anywhere underground).

When TSR decided to publish Undermountain, with Steve Schend as editor, we had both time and financial constraints---and it was decided to only publish my uppermost level [well, sort of: that collapsing stair actually leads up into the interior of Mount Waterdeep, and The Citadel of the Black Hand, a trap-upon-trap fortress once used by The Black Hand assassins as an HQ, but later forcibly cleaned out and taken over by the City Guard, and used as THEIR HQ and armory]. Existing maps that TSR had lying around, such as Mike Carr's map and a lot of very geometrical, long passages/large rooms maps done by Dave Sutherland for his Empire of the Petal Throne campaign [if you're not a longtime gamer, EPT was a FRP by Professor M.A. R. Barker, published by TSR in its early days, and by other publishers, later], were 'picked up' and cut-n-pasted together, to add on to my original map, 'growing' Undermountain without using any more of my lower-level stuff. So I have a lot more detail, but it doesn't match the maps you got in the product (Steve and I continued to detail little bits of Skullport and the drow temple complex in DRAGON, of course). Here's how I approach Undermountain: starter areas (around the Yawning Portal shaft) detailed down to the last copper piece and bit of rotting string. Thereafter: key rooms detailed fully, and 'power groups' (=drow patrols, orc foraging bands, doppleganger trios, and other prowling monsters) active on a level are fully detailed, and moved around the maps with buttons, my jotting down their current activities (why are they there? How do they get in and out? Who else have they met with, and what do they know about the dungeon?) as we go. They react to PC incursions, and thus Undermountain 'lives.'

In other words, Undermountain came first (1975-ish as a mapped game setting), and other things that developed separately were grafted on...
Kuje Posted - 11 Mar 2007 : 05:33:25
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Welcome to Candlekeep!

You may want to take this question over to Ed in his own thread -- Questions for Ed Greenwood (2007). Be warned, though, that Ed's computer access is spotty and that he has a host of other questions awaiting, as well as other projects that need completion. So you may get an answer quickly, or you may have to wait several months... But he will, eventually, answer.



Or years. :)
Wooly Rupert Posted - 11 Mar 2007 : 05:16:37
Welcome to Candlekeep!

You may want to take this question over to Ed in his own thread -- Questions for Ed Greenwood (2007). Be warned, though, that Ed's computer access is spotty and that he has a host of other questions awaiting, as well as other projects that need completion. So you may get an answer quickly, or you may have to wait several months... But he will, eventually, answer.

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