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Argonnessen is home to the oldest civilization on Eberron. The dragons wield epic magic, and their homeland is shielded against divination and teleportation. Tribes of barbarians roam the Seren Islands and the coastlines of Argonnessen; these include members of almost every humanoid race, perhaps collected by dragons in ages past. These Seren barbarians worship the dragons and protect the coasts from invaders. To date, no one from the Five Nations has ever ventured into the interior of the continent and returned to speak of it.

No one knows just how many dragons there  are in Argonnessen, but people tell stories of vast cavern complexes filled with the treasures of fallen civilizations, of prisons holding bound demons, of cities made from diamond and adamantine. Is there any truth to these tales, or is it all myth?


Argonnessen.

It is a name out of legend. It is a blank space on the map, marked with the shadow of a dragon. Distant scrying has allowed mapmakers to trace the continent’s major geographic features, but many regions are shielded from remote viewing, and prying too deeply into its mysteries has proven very dangerous. In 750 YK, the famed arcane cartographer Jolian Dan Jessel promised to present the Library of Korranberg with the first true map of Argonnessen. Before the work was completed, Jolian’s workshop was burned to the ground, and the gnome himself taken with trap the soul. Few events escape the Eyes of Chronepsis, and the wise leave Argonnessen be.

Argonnessen is a land of mystery, and explorers have long dreamed of the wealth and wonders that must lie within. To date, no envoy or merchant has ever breached the Great Barrier and returned to tell the tale. But times are changing. Dragonmarks adorn the skin of the lesser races, heralding a change in the course of the draconic Prophecy. And in the wake of the Last War, new heroes are rising . . . individuals who could change the course of history.


Argonnessen is enormous. It’s a continent the size of Khorvaire, with the same diversity of environments found in Khorvaire . . . but without airships, lightning rails, or, for that matter, roads. No inns cater to the hungry adventurer; instead, the land is filled with both dragons and all manner of hungry monsters. What fool would dive into this unknown wilderness?

Despite its dangers and remoteness, Argonnessen has much to offer. The dragons taught the giants of Xen’drik the arts of magic almost sixty thousand years ago. What secrets could a modern wizard wrest from Argonnessen? What mighty artifacts are hidden in the hoards of the great wyrms? What of secret insights into the draconic Prophecy? Knowledge of the future can be more precious than any gold. And don’t dismiss the thrill of doing what’s never been done, of seizing the chance to become a legend.

Nondragons in Argonessen

One common myth is that only dragons live in Argonnessen. It’s an established fact that explorers who venture into the land don’t return. Even the Serens don’t travel beyond Totem Beach unless summoned by their dragon lords. Many claim that Argonnessen is a land of dragons and only dragons.

In truth, lots of nondragons inhabit Argonnessen, drawn from a wide array of races and cultures. From goblinoids and humans to orcs and yuan-ti, Argonnessen has one of the most racially diverse populations on Eberron.

So where did these creatures come from? And what is their relationship with the dragons?

When the Age of Giants was in its infancy, dragons spread out across the world. Some followed the path of conquest, while others served as mentors to the lesser races. After the dragons were recalled to Argonnessen, they had to abandon their dominions. More than a few refused to leave empty-handed. Some of their subjects came willingly, most notably the stone giants brought across from Xen’drik; to this day, these giants are loyal servants of Argonnessen. Others were brought across as slaves, and settled in the Vast or on Seren.

Over the course of millennia, dragons have continued to “import” nondragons into Argonnessen. This has been done in the name of research, in accordance with the Prophecy, to revitalize failing communities, or simply to provide sport for the dominion lords of the Vast. On rare occasions, refugees have been given shelter in Argonnessen—notably the yuan-ti of Sarlona (although such shelter was revoked after the destruction of Io’vakas).

Despite the range of races represented on Argonnessen, the land is not a welcoming place for nondragons. The bulk of the natives of Xen’drik are found in the Vast, where they live at the whim of the dominion lords. Populations are strictly controlled, and they are little more than a living extension of the dragon’s hoard. The rebels who flee into the wilds are hunted for sport. Pockets of guerrillas have managed to survive; a number of persecuted yuan-ti and other nondragons allied with the Talons of Tiamat have taken refuge in ruins and underground warrens. But it is a dangerous life—dragon consider nondragons of little consequence and will snuff out lives without a second thought.

Beyond the Vast, some nondragons have been taken in as servants by flights of the Thousand, the dragon heartland. Others have found a place within the outward-looking Tapestry, assisting researchers or preparing to serve as agents of the Chamber in the world belong. The largest concentration of free humans is in the city of Io’lokar (page 40). Nonetheless, even beyond the Vast, nondragons have no rights, and most dragons dislike having other creatures encroach on their territory without an invitation. A human traveling in Argonnessen should have a good explanation for his presence—otherwise, he could quickly become a meal.

Adventures

Argonnessen is one of the most dangerous places in Eberron. Nondragons are unwelcome across much of the continent, and those trespassing into a dragon’s dominion could be attacked without warning. Dragons aside, the continent is filled with dangerous predators, many of whom have been imported to Argonnessen specifically to pose a challenge to dragons looking for an interesting fight. A low-level character shouldn’t even be thinking about going to Argonnessen. Even a swift trip—darting on to Totem Beach to make a record of etchings on the great statues—should be a daring and deadly challenge. Venturing into the depths of Argonnessen is a risk even epic-level heroes must weigh carefully.

Argonnessen is the stuff of legends. It is a place to hold out as a goal characters can aspire to achieve. When adventurers can finally set foot on the soil of Argonnessen, they should know that they are on their way to becoming legends themselves.

Death and Dark Magic

High-Level Ishamakhas, an outspoken member of the Conclave, was killed a month before while engaging in scholarly exploration at an ancient ossuary. Though he appears to have been overwhelmed by the undead guardians of the site, an anonymous message to a Conclave elder hints that the foul creatures were recent creations—undead minions of an Argonnessen necromancer bent on murder.

The wilds of Argonnessen conceal untold practitioners of the dark arts; despite centuries of effort, the Conclave has had little luck in rooting them out. In the aftermath of this brazen assault, the dragon elders hope to uncover the operations of the legendary Shadow masters—a cabal of draconic necromancers operating on the fringes of arcane tradition. However, the Conclave believes that investigation by the Eyes of Chronepsis runs too great a risk of drawing the cabal’s notice. The dragons seek outside help for this important and dangerous mission.

Hooks

The PCs might be known to the Conclave from their adventures in Khorvaire or beyond. Any party involved in aiding (or hindering) the work of the Chamber or putting down a rogue dragon in Khorvaire or Xen’drik might have come to the notice of the Eyes of Chronepsis. Such characters could be sought out for this sensitive operation.

A lternatively, characters traveling through Argonnessen clandestinely might find themselves caught by agents of the Conclave. Sensing an opportunity, the dragons offer the PCs their freedom in exchange for service—an offer the party cannot afford to turn down.

Sites

The climax of this adventure can make use of any draconic observatory (Explorer’s Handbook 115).

Adventure

  1. Dark Plots: The PCs must complete the investigation of the ruins where Ishamakhas died, dealing with the powerful undead that control the site. However, once these ancient guardians have been dispatched, the party finds evidence that Ishamakhas was not the first to visit the place. Two months past, a humanoid party came here to claim a now-missing relic—and to investigate the dragon’s death. Suggested Encounters: Zombie dragons (Dr 197) and skeletal dragons (Dr 192 and page 58 of this book) are sometimes found at ancient sites in Argonnessen, animated by the old magic lingering in such places.
  2. Assassins in Seren: As the PCs follow the trail of the mysterious party at the ossuary, they uncover a plot involving a faction of Seren barbarians selling draconic intelligence to the elves of Aerenal. Even as they break up the Seren operation, the PCs find themselves targeted by assassins. Whether or not the killers are successful at taking out members of the party, clues point to their having been hired by a dragon wizard named Arstyvrax. Suggested Encounters: The Seren enclave in the service of Aerenal can be represented by the village Mesk (Explorer’s Handbook 96). The Seren tribes are typically much lower level than any PCs adventuring in Argonnessen, so this encounter will turn on the tribesfolk’s vastly superior numbers. Alternatively, the barbarian queen Una Wyrmguard (page 66) and her warriors might be used.
  3. Observatory Showdown: The PCs arrive at the draconic observatory that is the lair of the dragon Arstyvrax, only to find themselves caught in a trap. The assassins dogging them are agents of Aerenal working under deep cover in Argonnessen. Their goal—to expose Arstyvrax as a member of the Shadowmasters even as they frame him for Ishamakhas’s murder.

    Arstyvrax uses the observatory as cover for his forbidden studies, drawing planar energy from Dolurrh for necromantic research. The Aerenal elves assume that the party is in the dragon’s employ. However, whether the PCs and the elves end up enemies or allies, Arstyvrax eventually reveals his true nature as an undead minion of the Blood of Vol. In the end, the PCs face a frenzied final battle with the vampiric dragon necromancer himself.

Suggested Encounters: Arstyvraxis detailed on page 56. His observatory lair is protected by a force of skeletal dragons (page 58) and dragonbone golems (Dr 164 and page 59 of this book).

The Aerenal assassins can be based on the vigilant sentinel of Aerenal prestige class (MoE 85), the dragonslayer prestige class (Dr 126), or both.

Rewards

Whether Arstyvrax flees or is slain, the wealth contained in his observatory is a suitable reward for the many dangers the PCs have faced. As well, exposing the plots of both the Shadowmasters and the Aereni puts the party firmly in the Conclave’s debt.

Development

Arstyvrax is a canny foe, and he has not lived this long without learning how to back down from a fight he cannot win. The vampiric dragon cuts his losses if defeat is imminent, fleeing to heal his wounds and plot his revenge. If this happens, Arstyvrax needs a backup hoard in a secret location (hoards take the place of coffins for a vampiric dragon), and the party will have gained a bitter foe.

War Games

High-Level

As the adventurers cross Argonnessen, they unwittingly stumble into a war game simulation run by the Light of Siberys. The exercise keeps the soldiers trained and sharp, and imported monsters from the Vast add an element of randomness to the simulation while posing no real threat to the dragons. Lesser creatures, however, have more of a problem.

Hooks

Two dragon generals, Schaisos (LG male ancient white dragon) and Nyssyeran (LN female ancient copper dragon) each marshal a force of dragons in the simulation. When Nyssyeran spots the PCs, she drafts them on the spot and sends them on a deadly mission across the battlefield. Alternatively, Schaisos could encounter the PCs first and request their aid, promising safe passage across Light of Siberys territory if they comply (and demanding they leave if they refuse).

Sites

A rocky western stretch of Totem Beach (page 48) serves admirably for the war games, and provides an opportunity to add Seren encounters.

Adventure

Nyssyeran instantly sizes up the characters and recognizes their value. Monsters from the Vast add a dimension of chaos to the simulation, but an unwritten rule allows each general to make use of whatever resources he or she can find. Nyssyeran utilizes the characters’ relatively small stature for an infiltration mission across the battlefield.

  1. Capture the Shard: Nyssyeran explains that each general’s command center contains a sparkling Siberys shard, representing the heart of their defenses. A side gains a tremendous advantage in the next game if it can capture the opposing team’s shard. The shard is kept in a small stone bunker, difficult for a dragon to enter unless she uses an alternate form ability, but doing so leaves the dragon vulnerable to the monsters roaming the battlefield. Nyssyeran sends the PCs across the field to retrieve the shard and return it to her.

    Before they leave, Nyssyeran warns the characters not to fly, whether naturally or by magical means. Ferocious dragons caught up in their tactics can fill seemingly empty sky in a heartbeat, and flying characters are more obvious and attract the attention of the other side (and dragon blindsense detects even invisible characters).
  2. Friendly Dragonfire: None of the dragons engaged in the simulation take note of the characters; nondragons possess the same status as the mindless beasts imported from the Vast. Enormous dragons wheel and spin overhead in a dazzling display of aerial acrobatics; a few engage in mock battles on the ground. Although the characters shouldn’t face direct attack from the dragons, the dragons don’t watch for innocent bystanders.
  3. Hostiles: Fierce creatures from the Vast add difficulty to the simulation, but don’t threaten the ancient dragons. Characters could have a tougher time with these threats.

    Prowling the battlefield currently are three truly horrid umber hulks, two abyssal greater basilisks, a battletitan dinosaur (sans barding; MM3 38), and an elite demon war mount mivilorn (sans armor; MM3 107). Numerous smaller monsters also dot the battlefield, but should pose no danger to the party.
  4. Rush the Bunker: An ancient green dragon circles above the bunker, which has a thick stone door sealed with a padlock (Open Lock DC 30). Combat likely proves deadly—even if the characters triumph, the other dragons on the field don’t look on the murderers kindly. Clever tactics and powerful magic should allow the PCs to retrieve the shard and escape. Their best option might be to rush the bunker, grab the shard, and teleport out.

Rewards

The characters’ grateful patron shows his or her thanks by not eating the characters. Possibly they also earn safe passage through this territory.

Development

If the characters perform admirably, they gain a valuable contact. Perhaps the Light of Siberys requires the characters for another “covert ops” mission in the future.

Territories of Argonessen

The continent of Argonnessen is divided into four informal territories. All areas fall under the rule of the Conclave, and the borders between them are open; a dragon of The Thousand can choose to settle in The Vast whenever he wishes. The true borders between the territories are cultural. Any dragon can settle in the Vast—but he must be prepared to live by its harsh rules.

Like Xen’drik, Argonnessen is a land that should bend to meet the needs of the story. Population figures give a general sense of the balance between nondragons and dragons. Even so, if a DM wants to add a city of ten thousand drow—the terminus of a secret pipeline running from Xen’drik across the Thunder Sea—nothing here prevents that.

Ancestral Vassals

Members of some dragon born bloodlines believe that they are descended directly from specific dragons and devote themselves to zealous, lifelong service to those dragons and their descendants. Although this belief is questioned by some critics, many dragons encourage it.

Environment

Argonnessen is as large as Khorvaire, but nearly impossible to reach. Bizarre and unnatural currents, razor-sharp reefs, wild elementals, and sudden storms prevent a ship from landing anywhere except for a few specific rocky beaches, largely on northern shores near the isle of Seren. Even if a safe landing is made, the mountain range called the Great Barrier makes access to all but the northernmost reaches of the continent exceedingly difficult

Argonessen's Influence on Khorvaire

In Khorvaire, you might …

  • Prevent a villain from acquiring a powerful artifact smuggled out of Argonnessen.
  • Encounter a dragonborn barbarian born on the Seren islands, who shares tales of mighty wyrms.
  • Battle a dragon who guards a hidden vault.

Some say the mysterious dragons of Argonnessen hide in plain sight, that shapechanged dragons scattered across Khorvaire pull the strings of civilization. According to some stories, the dragons seek to protect the younger races from vile fiends. In other tales, the dragons see the people of Khorvaire as fodder for arcane experiments. A dragon could be encountered as an ally or as a cruel enemy who casually crushes humanoids.

The magic of Argonnessen is far more powerful than the forces wielded by the wizards of Khorvaire. Many of the greatest artifacts in history were made in Argonnessen. Dragons are infused with magic, and their creations are made from the bones and scales of their kind.

Rising from the Last War

In Argonnessen, you could …

  • Clash with tribes of dragon-worshiping barbarians.
  • Explore an ancient city of dragons.
  • Discover mighty artifacts and long-lost spells.

Argonnessen is home to the oldest civilization on Eberron. The dragons wield ancient magic, and they have shielded their homeland against divination and teleportation. Tribes of barbarians roam the Seren Islands and the coastlines of Argonnessen; these include members of almost every humanoid race, perhaps collected by dragons in ages past. The Seren barbarians worship the dragons and protect the coasts from invaders. To date, no one from Khorvaire has ventured into the interior of the continent and returned to speak of it.

No one knows how many dragons live in Argonnessen, but stories tell of vast cavern complexes filled with the treasures of fallen civilizations, of prisons holding bound demons, of cities made from adamantine.

To those of Khorvaire, Argonnessen is a mystery space on the map. Only the most powerful characters might visit Argonnessen and return to tell the tale.

Trinkets

d10 Trinket
1 A pierced dragon scale on a cord
2 A statuette of a dragon carved from black bone
3 A dragon’s tooth, engraved with an unknown sigil
4 A child’s doll of a dragon, woven from leather cords
5 A dagger carved from a dragon’s talon
6 A brass disk bearing the silhouette of a black dragon
7 A small egg-shaped piece of polished bone
8 A bone fragment with brass inlaid runes
9 A leather pouch filled with tiny draconic teeth
10 A single large seed that’s warm to the touch

Argonessen Encounters

Dragon Golems

The dragons’ devotion to the arcane arts has seen Argonnessen produce a world’s worth of miraculous magic devices. From planar observatories, to lost artifacts of the Age of Demons, to golems and other constructs, dragon magic produces wonders that are far beyond those produced by the humanoid races.

Some sages speculate that dragon golems (Dr 163) could have been the first magic creatures of their kind, and that these constructs are the paradigm for every construct created since. The quori that invaded Xen’drik were known to have experimented with a dizzying number of construct designs. Some suspect that their initial knowledge in this field might have amounted to forbidden dragon magic first stolen by the giants.

The example creatures in Draconomicon—the dragon bone golem, drakestone golem, and ironwyrm golem—are typical of the golems created by Argonnessen’s dragon wizards and sorcerers. However, many forgotten ruins and magical locations in Argonnessen are guarded by ancient constructs of even more advanced power.

Half-Dragon Rakshasa

Not all half-dragons are the scions of the illicit pairings between dragons and the lesser races. The outsider minions of the Daughter of Khyber have their debased natures twisted even farther by the collusion of draconic and fiendish blood—a dark legacy of the Dragon Below.

Half-dragon rakshasas such as the one described below are living embodiments of the bond between dragon and fiend. As emissaries and liaisons between the Talons of Tiamat and the Lords of Dust, these fiends are in a unique position of power, and they are not afraid to play both sides. While the rajahs in their chains are eternally patient, the Daughter of Khyber grows ever more desperate to escape her prison in the Pit of Five Sorrows. By speeding up her release, the half-dragons hope to further the plots of the Lords of Dust. Tiamat’s eventual freedom will shake the world to its foundations and inspire war among the dragons—weakening that race in advance of the rajahs’ eventual return.

Half-fiend Dragon

Evil dragons are hardly in short supply in Argonnessen, but the fiendish dragon lords of the Talons of Tiamat exceed their mundane kin in power and their rapacious dedication to evil. Many of these are dragons drawn to Tiamat’s call at a young age, then twisted by fiendish power as they grow to maturity. Others are dragons corrupted by the dark energies of artifacts and magical locations hidden from sight since the Age of Demons. All share an undying dedication to the Daughter of Khyber, as well as a ruthless and deadly contempt for those in the Talons whose faith is found wanting.

High Cultists

Io’lokar is the City of Knowledge, but knowledge sometimes carries a dark price. Some years ago, at the behest of the diviner Elabenna, a scholarly expedition from that city’s College of Arcane Sciences pushed deep into the southern tundra in search of a legendary site known as the Black Well. Great lore from the earliest dragons was said to be preserved there, but only tantalizing fragments of it had been brought back by previous expeditions. Led by three veteran fighter/sorcerer surveyors of the college, the expedition and its wyvern mounts departed the city by greater teleport, taking to the air once they reached the hinterland.

They were never seen again.

Years later, the disastrous mission to the never-found Black Well is little more than a memory—even in the minds of the three Io’lokari explorers who survived it. What they found at that site and how it inspired them to savagely slay their retainers remains a secret known only to them. Since then, their names and pasts have been forgotten in the name of their service to the Talons of Tiamat. Drawing on the training and expertise granted them by their lives in the city, these former Io’lokari are among the most powerful humanoids in the cult.

Horrid Guardians

The Gatekeepers were the first to breed horrid animals, but they used techniques learned from the black dragon Vvaraak. Similar breeding practices allow the dragons of Argonnessen to create horrid guardians for their lairs. A copper dragon was supposedly the first to breed horrid lions; now several packs of these guardians roam free across Argonnessen or stand watch over hoards. Most guardian packs consist of one advanced horrid leader and four ordinary dire lions.


Argonnessen is a land of mystery, excitement, and great power. Many secrets hide here, guarded by the ever-vigilant dragons. Characters traveling across the vast continent encounter much more than combat and roleplaying challenges. The setting itself provides insight into the nature of the dragons, the ancient conflicts that abound here, and the wonder of Argonnessen. Use the following events to create atmosphere in your campaign, or to inspire your own events.

  1. On the horizon, a pair of dragons fly figure-eights before a rising sun.
  2. A trickle of crystal-clear water bubbles up from the center of an enormous draconic footprint.
  3. Thick green vines, native to Argonnessen, twine around a dragon’s skull. Purple flowers as large as a human’s head bloom along the vine and in each eyesocket.
  4. A 50-foot-tall marble pillar rises in the center of an otherwise empty plain. Draconic runes on the pillar spell the names of deceased dragons who gave their lives to preserve Eberron and the Prophecy.
  5. In a low valley, mushrooms grow to the size of huts, and giant, nonaggressive insects bumble about.
  6. On an ancient battlefield, the ghostly roars of dragons rise and fall on the wind.
  7. Anyone who falls asleep on a certain plateau has dreams of soaring through the air above Argonnessen.
  8. A bubbling brook contains pure, fresh water, but anyone who drinks gets terrible heartburn and belches a gout of fire in the next few minutes.
  9. A giant stone claw sits atop a cliff, the only remaining piece of a crumbled statue.
  10. A lake in the center of a small crater remains solidly frozen year-round.
  11. In a certain area, curative magic heals over open wounds with scales. The scales slough off and reveal ordinary skin after a few days.
  12. Three humanoid skulls sit on a ruined stone wall, telling nonsensical stories and singing ancient tunes in off-key voices. The skulls don’t recall anything of their mortal lives and possess no useful information.
  13. A trickle of magma continually oozes from a volcano; channels funnel the magma into giant molds dug in the ground. Several cooled and hardened magmastatues stand nearby.

Getting There

Getting to Argonnessen is a challenge in its own right. No captain in his right mind sails to the land of the dragons. The Serens challenge anyone who nears Totem Beach, and the guardians of the coast are deadly indeed. Surely other landing points exist? On the map it appears that way, but the waters around Argonnessen are deadly. Wild elementals drift through cloud and sea, and seem to be drawn to elemental vessels. Perhaps this is a natural occurrence, but it seems more likely that the dragons have something to do with it. Sahuagin also pose a threat to the unwary traveler. Worse still, travelers’ tales speak of krakens, vast maelstroms that arise without warning, and dragon turtles the size of islands. And then there are the true dragons one could face when Argonnessen is finally in sight.

Perhaps these risks are overstated. Even so, the stories are sufficient to keep House Lyrandar and other merchant captains from risking the wrath of the dragons. Adventurers who want to travel to Argonnessen must acquire their own mode of transportation.

Teleportation is possible. Various forms of remote viewing can allow explorers to spot a suitable touchdown point on the mainland. However, scrying has its dangers. Although the continent isn’t completely shrouded, many areas are hidden from prying eyes. Some of these are the direct work of specific dragons, using effects such as that provided by inscriptions of vacancy (see the sidebar). Others result from a number of wondrous locations, built over the course of tens of thousands of years to shield vital areas. Some just block divination; others actually lash out with a powerful scry trap (MoE 101). Prying into the affairs of dragons is a dangerous business.

The safest option is to seek native aid. An invitation from the Chamber—or one of the other powers of Argonnessen—is ideal. Another approach is to deal with the Serens. Occasionally a Seren can be found wandering Khorvaire, or drinking in the taverns of Stormreach. If adventurers earn the trust of such a wanderer, they might at least secure safe passage to Totem Beach. And if they’re lucky, their guide might know a path across the Great Barrier and into the interior.

A Land of Monsters

Argonnessen is a massive place, and the dragons are not numerous. What are the odds of a group of adventurers stumbling onto a dragon right away?

Setting aside the fact that dragons enjoy a good hunt, and that they can use powerful magic to watch the borders . . . perhaps it’s not so bad. Maybe a party won’t encounter a dragon the instant it reaches the Great Barrier.

But dragons aren’t the only dangers Argonnessen has to offer. Huge gray renders. Displacer beast pack lords . . . in packs. Truly horrid umber hulks. War trolls. The tarrasque. Almost any creature can turn up in Argonnessen. How could so many divergent creatures evolve in the same place? They couldn’t. The dragons collect creatures from across the world and even the depths of Khyber, letting these monsters loose along the borders and the wild region known as the Vast. These monsters serve both as a living security system and as a challenge for young dragons honing their combat skills.

In addition to imported creatures, Argonnessen has a native population of dinosaurs, dire animals, and lesser dragons. Many lords of the Vast or of the more “civilized” Light of Siberys have packs of faithful hunting wyverns; some even equip their wyverns with barding and magic equipment.

When building an encounter list for Argonnessen, DMs should keep the local climate in mind . . . but beyond that, almost any creature could find a home in Argonnessen. Dragons are unlikely to introduce powerful, highly intelligent creatures that could pose a threat to draconic dominance of Argonnessen. Other than that, the sky’s the limit.

Environment

Argonnessen has a wide range of climates, from the temperate jungles and deserts of the north to the bitter tundra of the southern peninsula. Much of this variety is natural, but a few areas possess climate that is quite unnatural. Argonnessen has suffered its own share of magical catastrophes. The battles of the Age of Demons tore at reality, and incursions from Fernia and Risia have left permanent scars on the land. The Fang Crater is always filled with blistering heat, while the ice sheet around the base of Silverclaw Peak is bordered by steaming jungle. These effects mean that it is possible to find monsters tied to a specific environment far from where one might expect. Still, these effects are far more stable than in Xen’drik and the Mournland.

W hen traveling across A rgonnessen, always remember that it’s a land of dragons. Nondragons exist in the interior, but even they aren’t encouraged to travel, and those who do so on the business of a dragon are usually provided with a wyvern mount. It is largely a land without roads and without inns, shops, Jorasco healing houses, or any of the other amenities adventurers grow used to.

Big Risks, Big Rewards

Adventures in Argonnessen should be the stuff of song and story. Six heroes facing an army of dragons. The Daughter of Khyber rising from her prison, shattering the mystic wards as she climbs. The discovery and claiming of a sword wielded in a battle at the dawn of time. As a DM, play to this. Consider the scope of history, and ways to give an encounter more weight.

This chapter presents a few new items with which to reward adventure groups, but feel free to expand this list to appeal to a specific group of players. Some ideas follow.

Secret Knowledge: Whenever a new supplement makes its way into the game, a Dungeon Master has to decide how to integrate new spells and feats. Does a sorcerer suddenly have access to all the spells in Complete Arcane? Or do those spells have to be introduced into the campaign? Argonnessen is an obvious place to introduce material from Dragon Magic or Draconomicon, but it could just as easily be the source of spells from Spell Compendium or Player’s Handbook II. The dragons of Argonnessen have forgotten more about magic than any other mortal creature has ever known; few spells are outside their reach.

The same holds true for feats or even classes. Perhaps the dragons of the Light of Siberys were the first to perfect the Tiger ClawToB discipline. At this point in history, it could be that no living nondragon knows this art . . . and that to progress along this path, a PC would have to find a draconic mentor and convince the master of his worth as a student.

Artifacts: The giants of Xen’drik might be one of the primary sources of artifacts, but don’t forget that the dragons taught the giants. Furthermore, the dragons have spent millennia collecting the artifacts of the Overlords of the Age of Demons, who were truly the most powerful beings seen on Eberron. If a DM wants to add artifacts into the game, Argonnessen is a logical place. In addition to items, be sure to consider the concept of artifact spells (found in Secrets of Xen’drik). Dragons have certainly developed epic spells. A wizard exploring Xen’drik might even find the true Aureon’s spellshard (or at least Ourelonastrix’s spellshard), containing the final creations of the dragon who might have been the first Sovereign of magic.

Glory: Argonnessen is big. It’s ancient. A thousand legends are tied to the dragons, and a thousand more to their mysterious homeland. Are there really fiends buried beneath every rock? Is Aureon’s true shadow hidden in the Pit of Five Sorrows? Is Tiamat stirring once more, and if so, are the adventurers the only ones who can return her to her rest?

Dragon Hoards

Why do the dragons of Argonnessen have hoards? Where do their hoards come from? The classic dragon burns a king out of his hall and lays claim to his trove of treasure. But Argonnessen is a land of dragons, and always has been. So where does this treasure come from, and what purpose does it serve?

For the dragons of Argonnessen, a hoard isn’t simply a source of pleasure and satisfaction; it is a duty. During the Age of Demons, the Overlords and their fiendish minions established citadels across Argonnessen and stocked them with powerful magic items and artifacts. In the wake of the war, the dragons found themselves in possession of much of this treasure. Many powerful artifacts couldn’t be destroyed. Even with lesser items, the dragons often refused to destroy tools they could potentially use. And so the treasures of the demons were divided up among the dragon heroes of the war. It wasn’t a gift, it was a charge: These artifacts must never be wielded by those who would abuse their power. Although this was a great responsibility, it was also a status symbol, a sign of respect. In emulation, lesser dragons began to gather lesser treasures, as well as coins and jewels they found pleasing to the eye. As generations passed, the collection of such items became both a hobby and a source of status. When the dragons returned from Xen’drik, they brought treasures of the giants with them, and a number developed a connoisseur’s eye for such baubles. The centerpiece of any hoard was the ancient treasures to be guarded, the heirlooms of a dragon’s line. Collection itself became a source of pleasure, and one that served to mitigate the frustration of those who have no artifacts to guard.

Two elements of this situation affect explorers and adventurers. First, the hoards in Argonnessen contain artifacts and magic items designed to be used by rakshasas and other Medium fiends—weapons, armor, and jewelry that an explorer could take. The other aspect is that these items have a history and a role in draconic culture. Elders leave clear plans for who will assume guardianship of a relic after the keeper dies. As such, adventurers who kill a dragon and plunder his trove could be surprised when his heirs track them down to collect their legacies. A true hero who earns the respect of a dragon might be granted the right to guard the artifact on behalf of Argonnessen. On the other hand, thieves could find a powerful item far more trouble than a lesser one.

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Created by Joseph Meehan prije 4 godine. Last modified by Joseph Meehan prije 11 mjeseci

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