Pushed out to the farthest reaches of the Four Oceans where even the stars are strange, pirates and corsairs live outside the laws and customs of Imperial Tianxia. Outcasts and rebels by birth, crime, bureaucratic pettiness, or choice, they worship the little gods of old and keep to the ways that have calmed tide and wind for generations. But the dangers that threaten them from both within and without have never been so dire.
Zhang witch-alchemists whisper poison in the emperor’s ear, and Tianxia is stirred again to conquest as he turns greedy eyes to Heaven. The foundations of the world shake as the Mandate of Heaven is withdrawn to punish his arrogance. The dragon-gods swim in the deep as sea and storm grow wild and rage at the uncaring sky. Chaos and revolution spread like wild-fire in the colonies as fanatics and anarchists seize the moment of Tianxia’s distraction to reclaim their homelands and ancient traditions.
And as their world shifts inexorably beneath their feet, and the reshaping of the world begins, all that is left for every soul under Heaven to decide is where and for what they will make their stand.
Wild Seas Under Heaven is a 5th Edition D&D campaign that I’ve been running since last year, drawing strongly from the sandbox and hexcrawl traditions.
It is inspired by the legendary history of China presented in the Bamboo Annals, The Chronicles of Master Li and Number Ten Ox by Barry Hughart, wuxia films that include Hero and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and the anime films Princess Mononoke and Sword of the Stranger.
The campaign is coming off a hiatus of nearly eight months which means that I’m taking this opportunity to make some tweaks to the system, adapt the campaign fully to a hexcrawl style, generate my own procedures for running such a game, and continue developing the background of the setting.
I’ll be sharing as much of that content as possible (without spoiling things for my players) here, along with play reports once sessions resume.