Monday, 10 November 2014

A Sort of Homecoming...Forward Operating Base: Borderlands.

"And you know it's time to go
Through the sleet and driving snow
Across the fields of mourning to a light that's in the distance.

And you hunger for the time
Time to heal, 'desire' time
And your earth moves beneath your own dream landscape.

On borderland we run.
I'll be there, I'll be there tonight
A high-road, a high-road out from here."  U2

FOB: Borderlands.

If those walls could talk, eh? I wonder what they would say? Literally, millions of adventurers have walked her cobbled streets... had an ale or seven in the tavern or caught up with the local scuttlebutt at the market, while trying to flog gems with the orc blood still fresh on them. Good times. 

I still love this module for it's simplicity and functionality, and that's why I will be using it for my first ever Hex Crawl. I hope to post more here  when it happens. Even though it was released December of 1979, I still have a blast rolling her out after all these years and I don't think I will ever tire of it.

  Anyone else out there still using The Keep as a springboard to adventure?


  1. :D

    I love the Keep. It's such a great low-level sandbox.

  2. During the 4e day, the Keep was re-imagined with a different location and circumstances in Dungeon Magazine (online version). However, the adventures and side treks that were published were reasonable good and could be back-ported or used for inspiration for a B2 sandbox.

    Do some searches on "Keep on the Chaos Scar" or just "D&D Chaos Scar" or similar... You might find some cool stuff to adapt.

    1. Thanks for the heads up, I will scope it out today.

  3. I’m also of the opinion that Keep on the Borderlands is an oldie but goodie. I got back into RPGs about 15 months ago after a 20+ year hiatus, and was fortunate enough to hook-up with a great group at the beginning of what developed into a vibrant AD&D 1e campaign. The enjoyment I had as a player in that endeavor and the memories it brought back encouraged me to blow the dust of a tattered old favorite and take my own shot behind the DM screen. My game of choice? Moldvay/Cook B/X. My setting? Keep on the Borderlands.

    I thought the rules light nature of B/X and wide-open possibilities presented by KotB, coupled with my own nostalgia for & familiarity with the material, would make it a comfortable first effort. I couldn’t have been more right. I was nervous heading into my first session as a DM since my son (now 25) was a toddler. But once play started, it was like slipping an aching foot into an old soft shoe.

    You’re quite right. The Keep makes a great base of operations. My players have made several forays into the dread caves, survived a number of close encounters as they’ve traveled to & fro, and are now preparing to head of in other directions for further exploration. All the while the Keep has served as their base.

    One of the things I like about the Keep is that it provides a logical mechanism for different players to drop in & out of the line-up as their availability permits. At present we’re about six sessions in. I’ve had as many as five and as few as two players at my table, and never the same line-up twice. But the Keep, along with the NPCs I’ve populated it with, provides the common thread that ties everything together.

    Anyway, just thought you’d like to hear you’re not the only one with a fondness for Keep on the Borderlands.

    Having enjoyed this as well several other pieces of you written, I’m glad to have stumbled across your blog and plan to return again for more in the future. *Keep* up the good work!

    1. Kind words, thank you very much, John. I am in the process of converting the map into hexes for my 2015 Hex Crawl Campaign. Having never done one before, I think the KOTBL's is the ideal place to start, and, it is as you say, all the NPC's etc stay the same and provide the continuity when the regular players are not around. *Keep* enjoying the blog!