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Savage Baronies (2e)

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The Savage Baronies are home to all these and more! This accessory for the RED STEEL campaign holds a 64-page sourcebook that covers each of the nine Savage Baronies in detail, including the rulers of the lands, the attitudes of their people, and the effects of the Red Curse on those people.

Also included is a 32-page adventure, set in the Savage Baronies and the surrounding lands. The goblinoids of the Yazak Steppes are building another horde! Invasion is imminent, and it's up to the player characters to stop it! Included with the adventure are handouts and pregenerated characters that can be used as PCs or NPCs.

In addition, a full-color poster map shows an overview of the Savage Coast.

Note: Audio components not included.

Product History

Savage Baronies (1995), by Tim Beach, is an expansion for Red Steel. It was published in April 1995.

About the Cover. Unlike its predecessor, Red Steel (1994), Savage Baronies (1995) has a proper cover. It also has a fun easter egg: the blonde warrior is author Tim Beach. He says, "The artist, Alan Pollack, gave me a stronger chin, but otherwise, it looks a lot like me (though I wear my hair in a ponytail most of the time now)."

Origins (I): The Rest of the Roleplaying Supplement. Savage Baronies is the other half of the Red Steel mini-setting. It details the human-centric Savage Baronies, on the eastern side of the Savage Coast, and also contains the setting's first adventure. Like its companion, it's an "Audio CD Adventure".

Origins (II): The Rest of Red Steel. Though Savage Baronies marked the end of the Red Steel roleplaying supplements, there were actually two more far-flung products.

Red Steel Campaign Themes (1996) repackaged the Audio CDs from Red Steel and Savage Baronies, marking them as the most successful Audio CDs in TSR's series of audio products.

Then, TSR published a novel set in the Red Steel setting: The Black Vessel (1996). Curiously, TSR retired the "Red Steel" brand in the nine or so months between the two products, so The Black Vessel instead bears the "Mystara" logo.

Origins (III): The Rest of the Savage Coast. As it turns out, Savage Baronies wasn't the end of Red Steel roleplaying after all. Because Red Steel "had received a lot of support and gotten some very favorable reviews", TSR decided to relaunch it as a full line, beginning with the Savage Coast Campaign Book (1996), which would merge Red Steel and Savage Baronies into a single product.

Unfortunately, a number of different factors would interfere with the longevity of the revamped Savage Coast line … but that's a story for another product.

About the Media Tie-In. Though The Black Vessel isn't an official tie-in, it's set in the Savage Baronies and it's about an artifact that could be a match for The Barrier Mask, making it a clear complement to the adventure in this box as well.

Adventure Tropes. "Divided We Fall" is very much an adventure of the '90s, meaning that it's made up of episodic encounters, despite the fact that some of those episodes are themed as delves. The encounters are built around a MacGuffin quest for an artifact: the Bracers of Forbiddance.

Though it comes with an Audio CD, "Divided We Fall" doesn't use it for adventure cues, like the rest of the Audio CD series. Instead, the CD contains thematic music, much like Red Steel itself.

Eras of Mystara: 1010 AC.

Exploring Mystara: The Savage Coast. Savage Baronies covers the nine young human states of the Savage Coast. They are Almarrón, Cimmaron< Gargoña, Guadalante, Narvaez, Saragón, Texeiras, Torreón, and Vilaverde. Of them, Saragon gets the most attention, because it's also the focus of the "Divided We Fall" adventure. Many Mystaran lands were based on real-world cultures, and that's the case here too. Various of the Savage Baronies were inspired by Portugal, Moorish Spain, Inquisition Spain, and Conquistador Spain.

The boxed set also includes a large-scale map of the entire Savage Coast from the Arm of the Immortals in the west to the Serpent Peninsula in the east. It's somewhat surprising that this map was included here, rather than in Red Steel.

Artifacts of Note. The adventure focuses on a new artifact called the Bracers of Forbiddance, which are linked to The Barrier Mask. The Mask is a major artifact of Saragón, first referenced way back in Dragon #175 (November 1991). Both originate with the ancient Oltec people.

NPCs of Note. Numerous rulers of the Baronies are of course mentioned in the box. However the most notable NPC may be Miles Killian O'Kayne, one of the pregenerated PCs for the adventure. He has a ship, "the Selwynn, named for a lost love". There's a bit more information in the source material for the Colony of the Horn, which says that Selwynn was "a golden-eyed elven woman of gentle manner and surpassing beauty". If that all sounds familiar, it's because Beach wrote about "Selowen" in DLQ2: "Flint's Axe" (1992). It was apparently a star-crossed love that spanned worlds!

About the Creators. Beach wrote for TSR throughout the first half of the '90s. 1995 was a busy year, which also saw him working for the Dark Sun, Forgotten Realms, and Planescape lines.

About the Product Historian

The history of this product was researched and written by Shannon Appelcline, the editor-in-chief of RPGnet and the author of Designers & Dragons - a history of the roleplaying industry told one company at a time. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to shannon.appelcline@gmail.com.

 
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Reviews
-
December 17th, 2006
An expansion to the Red Steel setting that lives up to the name. More races to play, good adventures, sample PC's and additional history for the GM to use to add depth to the background. Long live the SAVAGE COAST.<br><br><b>QUALITY&l [...]
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November 2nd, 2004
As far as the books are conserned their ok, just like the originals.<br><br><b>LIKED</b>: just like the original product<br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: no cd music<br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: [...]
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Product Information
Author(s)
Pages
96
Edition
1.0
Publisher Stock #
TSR 9500
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67.74 MB
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File Last Updated:
July 01, 2017
This title was added to our catalog on July 04, 2017.