Glendovel Close

Is there any official word on what kind of town Glendovel Close is?  I'm not finding anything right off the bat, but I picture a fairly busy merchant town for parts east, south, and north; getting most of it's business through Bard's Gate. 

A giant incursion in my campaign may be popping up from the Stoneheart Mountains, and I was wondering what kind of fortifications it may have.

That's a pretty close description really. We haven't formally defined Glendovel Close in a published product yet beyond its brief mention in Bard's Gate. It's one of the centralized farming towns of the Plains of Mayfurrow and serves as the the abode of one of the Bard's Gate trade factors that oversees the sale and transportation of the local harvests back to Bard's Gate. It's population of 2,170 makes it the largest community of northern Mayfurrow (about twice the size of Darnagal) and it serves as the anchor at the western end of the Shepherd's Crook trade road that marks the northern boundary of Bard's Gate's suzerainty in the area.

Despite its relative size and importance as a farming hub, it's not really much or a merchant city, though. That's because the north-bound trade out of Bard's Gate mainly goes by ship out of Freegate. Since the rise and subsequent fall of Tsar three centuries and more ago, the northern land route of the Old North Road has not been popular due to the proximity of intermitently hostile Acregor and the fact that it runs directly through The Desolation. Most merchants prefer to take the sea route to reach the trading points along the Binjerin River and on up to Apothasalos. So Glendovel Close's trade has more to do with gathering the surrounding region's harvested crops and livestock, managing the trade transactions with Bard's Gate and then arranging its transport south as opposed to a more traditional mercantile sort of center where many kinds of trade would be coming through as merchants used the city as a stopover to markets still farther abroad.

However, depending on your own campaign world, if you have run Slumbering Tsar and have determined that its evil has been rooted out and the Desolation largely cleared of major hazards, the bonus adventure "Sleeping Dogs" at the end of the hardcover book assumes a reoccupation of the old city by those of adventurous spirit and of a renewal of the ancient land trade routes to the north. So under those circumstances, Glendovel Close would be experiencing a boom as a major trade hub between the Bard's Gate lands and the newly opened markets north and would likely be growing in both size and importance. In that case, it would definitely look like a more typical bustling merchant town and less like an aggrandized farmers market.

Almost forgot. It's unlikely to have much in the way of major fortifications. Maybe an old palisade from its early days a little more than an isolated farm village. It's farm market has grown so expansive under Bard's Gate's influence, though, that it's impractical to try and expand fortifications to encompass it all. Plus, though it's far on the fringes, it's quite a distance away from Acregor, The Desolation, or the varied dangers of the Dragon Hills, and most of the hostilities from the Azure range in the Stonehearts has been directed either more internally or south. Also, to get the abundance of foodstuffs to be found at Glendovel Close (it's main resource), it'd be safer for raiders to ust hit the individual farms or small villages that dot the surrounding area than to try to deal with the massed folk at trade hub. It's probably got a handful of Waymark cavalry from Bard's Gate, a locally appointed sheriff, and a locally organized militia. But that's probably about it for defenses. It's largely a soft target protected more by its distance from everything and the pointlessness of trying to raid it as much as anything. If it has become a more mercantile-oriented center in a post-Tsar campaign, then it's new prosperity would center a lot more portable wealth there and make it a much more enticing target. In that case, there would probably be an expansion of the palisade going up (ar least over portions of the town), a much larger and more organized militia, more Waymark cavalry, and probably a retained mercenary company or too to help keep the peace and protect trade.

michaelsandar's picture

Thanks Greg, this is great information!

I'm throwing my Sword of Air group for a loop - two of the PC's have run off with the Sword itself to Freegate and Sorten (after a two year + real time campaign to recover it), unaware if the rest of the party is alive or dead.  While the rest of the party has been recouperating from their capture by Kayden (in the form of Webb's Character Killing Session) I have been planting the seeds of tossing in a) the AD&D "G" series, swapping Geoff for the far north and eastern edges of Stoneheart Valley, along with bits and pieces from "Dead From Above" out of Quests of Doom (which seems a little high powered for it's level range!).

Giantish shamans of several different tribes from the eastern reaches of the Stoneheart Mountains have been growing more and more frustrated with incursions from small farming villages around Glendovel Close and Acregor.  They call upon the cloud giants, who put into play the Ossuary (upon which my pc's just landed) and hill giants begin raiding out of the Steading. Any losses suffered are animated by the cloud giant necromancers, and soon Acregor finds itself in a deep siege by both living and undead giants.

Meanwhile Frost and Fire giants put their collective heads together to make things worse for the puny humans.  Their shamans cook up some magic at an old shrine to (the LL equivalent to Tharizdun, who I haven't found yet) to take the already oppresive summer heat and blast all of the clouds in the region away. This has had the effect of pulling much of the populace into smaller locations, stop banditry and keep patrols slow and weak.  Around Bard's Gate, citizens line the river day and night, and commerce begins to drop off.  Refugees from villiages beging to struggle their way in.  As the summer wears on, crops refuse to grow from lack of water and the threat of disease begins to worry the populace.  All clerics, magic users and bards are called upon to work at least 4 hours per day casting things like create water, cure disease, and use their powers to purify water. To make matters worse, the higher ups in BG begin using their personal wizards and clerics for some 'central air' in their homes, sparking minor riots...

...I'm getting off my original point...!

...that being:

  • does Acregor have a write-up?  I see it's a fortress or citadel, but I'm hoping it can hold out for a few weeks against a giant incursion.
  • Thanks for the info on Glendovel Close, that makes perfect sense.  I see it as a town with lots of wheel-ruts from wagons and carriages, taverns and inns for passers-by and lots of farming for outgoing trade, but little in-town trade.  I actually have a second campaign going (lucky me!) currently in the Desolation...but they're a long way from making it safe!
  • That's a good side population for GC... I definitely will have a Bard's Gate contingent there to help hold off any threats.  No fortifications will make things difficult though!

Thanks again!


That's really cool! I love the G series. It's my all-time favorite of the old Greyhawk stuff after the A series (it was the first I had and has always been my favorite as a result).

Acregor is from the NG module K6: Shades of Gray. It is an isolationist and hostile realm that is ruled by a council of wizards (I think, I'm going from memory here and may be a little bit off), but is secretly controlled by the lich Acregor. It was he who was allied with the white dragon and evil svirnefblin in the plot to unleash the Gray Plague in that adventure. The realm controls most of the southern Dragon Hills. So, not only could it hold out for a time against giant incursions, there's a good chance it could be sponsoring the giant incursions. Acregor has been in a low-level cold war (that occasionally flares hot) for centuries with Freegate. It is wary of provoking the growing power of Bard's Gate which has a lot to do with why it's not more overt in its aggression.

The Dead from Above is officially set in Cerediun Province (south of the Sinnar Coast region) in the Lost Lands, with the giant incursions coming from the Scar-in-the-Sky Peaks. You can (and should) of course set these adventures wherever works best for your game, but I'll throw in some opinion that would conflict the least with published and or eventually-will-be published Lost Lands info.

If I was running the campaign with the elements you have described, I'd set it in the Cerediun/Exeter/County of Toullen area. All the pieces necessary to incorporate the G series are pretty much in place without much need for shoehorning. The southern Stonehearts are not really big-time "giant territory" because of the strong historical presence of the various mountain dwarf Great Clans (see Mountains of Madness for more info there), plus the bad guys of that region are already associated with stuff like dragons, the Stoneheart Curse, the Ice Plateau and Alesardin as established in several previous works. Giants are a BIG deal in the northern Stonehearts (the Northlands area), but that's thousands of miles north of Glendovel Close, Acregor, etc. Whereas the Forlorn Mountains, Scar-in-the-Sky Peaks, and Kal'Iugus Mountains are known as giant havens and areas with a history of giant raids (the Giantlands of the Forlorn Mountains sparked a major war in the Duchy of Southvale and still continues to tangle with the Erskaelosi of Tyr).

That of course brings the action far from being centered on the Sword of Air locales you have mentioned, so it may not be suitable for what you're wanting to do in your campaign. But that's probably the most natural fit, Lost Lands-wise to plug in the G series adventures.

I don't know if that info is helpful to you or not, but I wanted to throw it out there just in case it might be. Have fun!

God, I love these little tidbits! I lurk these forums several times a day just in case. Mr. Vaughn, what I wouldn't give to pick your brain for several hours...

michaelsandar's picture

Very helpful!  I'm stuck shoe-horning though as I've already begun - the heatwave temporarily grounded the griffon patrols and the Ossuary struck directly at Bard's Gate - and we quite like the Akados region.  That said, what you've posted about Acregor and the various power struggles gets my mind churning for plenty of non-canon action... Pershaps instead of going the D series way at the conclusion (assuming we make it that far!) Acregor will be one of the major movers and shakers behind a) pulling the giants into the area (from the northern reaches of the SHM) and b) pushing them to raid in hopes of softening up patrols from Bard's Gate and Freegate.  This could work as an undercover blow in the midst of their cold war - giants look to be responsible (though isn't it odd that they're here??) while Acregor reaps the benefits of a troubled pair of free cities...

Does anyone know of or perhaps could refer me to any of the published sources that have a timeline or history of the region around Glendovel Close?

The area hasn't really been detailed as of yet; the biggest things to record can be found in the Borderland Provinces timeline, however! You can also find a little bit of information in K6: Shades of Gray, but keep in mind I think the map has changed some between that adventure and the current state of the world.