Somewhere in the world lies the lost valley of Tlactoztlan. The strange natives of this hidden place practice human sacrifice, pray to bizarre gods, adorn themselves with brightly-colored feathers, and – it is rumored – live in cities made of gold. Only the bravest and luckiest adventurers find their way to Tlactoztlan!
A charming, though somewhat anxious, young priest of Tlaloc, the rain god of the Tlactozotl, Yayauhqui travels between villages and cities in Tlactoztlan, bringing news and, if Tlaloc is pleased, rain. Yayauhqui is an accomplished agrarian and an amateur alchemist who believes that mixing the two disciplines will allow him to better understand the world around him.
Grounded as he is in the physical world and the plight of his people, he often finds himself at odds with his superiors in the great temples of Xotepeclan and Tecali. Additionally, unlike many within the priesthood Yayauhqui is not immediately suspicious of the handful of outsiders who have found their way into the lost valley. In fact, he may well be sympathetic to their plight.
Like all Texotli (the priests of Tlactoztlan), Yayauhqui wears a headdress comprised of blue parrot feathers, with his own right-of-passage green Quetzalcoatl feather at the center.
Hero Points 5
Insubordinate (roll an extra die when dealing with “superiors”)
Jade parrot mace, d6+1
Very light armor (feathered cloak) & shield (chimalli), d3
Really liking the idea of a meso-American campaign. A thoughtful priest of Tlaloc makes for a nice change from traditional barbarian heroes.
Wondering what a Jaguar Knight might look like in BOL!
Have you thought of running this campaign around the time of Cortez? You could have Spanish (or the fantasy equivalent) explorers/would-be conquerors showing up for a little clash-of-culture flavor.
G-Man, my man! I agree that there’s definitely something “refreshing” about this little excursion. Like a nice glass of wine when what you normally drink is beer 🙂
Hmm, I’ll have to see what I can come up with on the Jaguar Knight front…
You know, I hadn’t considered the conquistador angle on this yet. But there’s definitely something there to think about. At the moment I’m really envisioning Tlactoztlan as a place that the traditional barbarian heroes wind up trapped in for a while and then leave (if they’re lucky :)) but digging deeper into the place certainly has its appeal. I shall ponder this!
Well, if the heroes are coming from a proto-European cutlure, with metal armor and weapons, horses, perhaps a monotheistic religion, plus they’re out for loot, then you’ve already got conquistadores!
I wasn’t quite envisioning it as an invasion so much as a “we got lost and wound up here” kind of thing – more like a Conan story where he just shows up in a place ripe for adventure. But the idea of running a party of conquistadoritos (insert cheese-coated gamer fingers joke here) could be big ol’ fun. I’m not sure I’ll do it, but if you do, please (a) feel free to use anything you find here and (b) tell me all about it!
All this Meso-American stuff has got me thinking about Hidden Shrine of Tomoachan . . . which gets me thinking about Camazotz . . . and the evil bat-god’s priesthood of black-clad assassins. Behold, Cahualitl:
Villain Points 5
Blowgun (d2+poison, typically Fer-De-Lance venom; Tricky Strength test to avoid paralysis, another Tricky test next round to avoid d6 damage from muscle contractions)
Obsidian knife d6-2 (d6 in surprise situations*)
Bat-fur cloak (very light armor, d3-1)
*cribbed from Mazes and Minotaurs
Born from a noble caste, Cahualitl was inducted into the cult of Camazotz and trained in remote mountain caves to eliminate foes of the priesthood. His nose was ritually shorn off to give him a more “bat-like” appearance. Reclusive and misanthropic, he now lives in jungle ruins amongst his winged brethren, waiting for summons from the cult’s high priest.
Ah, Tomoachan. What a module.
Nice work on Cahualitl, G! And I love the blowgun. I was just pondering how to implement such a thing in a future write-up.