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RPG Sourcebooks 0e-gaz-04

My Library – 0e-gaz-04

Gazetteer 4 – The Kingdom of Ierendi

  • Publisher: TSR
  • Rules: Dungeons & Dragons BECMI
  • Developer:
  • Reference: gaz4 9215
0e-gaz-04 Ierendi
0e-gaz-04 gaz4 D&D BECMI Ierendi

To some it is a vacationer’s paradise. Tropical islands, set in sapphire seas, fringed with shell-covered beaches: the perfect spot to “get away from it all.” To others, it is a place to be feared. Pirates’ hideaways, disease-ridden jungles, psychotic natives: the perfect spot to avoid.

The Kingdom of Ierendi comprises ten islands, each with a specific attraction for the adventure-seeking visitor. the native population includes the Makai, the original tribe to inhabit the islands, and various settlers who have chosen these exotic locales as their home (well for some, perhaps “chosen” is not quite the proper word…). Your characters want to take a break from precisely that kind of relief.

Product History

GAZ4: “The Kingdom of Ierendi” (1987), by Anne Gray McCready, is the fourth book in the “GAZ” series of Gazetteers for the Known World. It was published in December 1987.

Continuing the “GAZ” Sourcebooks. “The Kingdom of Ierendi”, like its predecessors, offers background on a large country within the Known World. It returns to the 64-page size used by the first two “GAZ” books and has a few differences from the series to date.

First, because it details a group of islands, the focus of “The Kingdoms of Ierendi” is (out of necessity) somewhat different. There’s the regular attention to the history, geography, economy, military, and society of the country as a whole, but after that each of the ten island gets some specific attention — which takes up much of the book.

Second, there’s more GM-specific information. This book probably has more plot hooks in it than any of the previous “GAZ” releases, and it also has almost no player-specific information — replacing that with a “handout” the tries to sell the Islands as a tour destination.

Third, there’s a lot of satire in the book, exceeding even the light-hearted elements of GAZ3: “The Principalities of Glantri” (1987). Some of this comes from the idea of the islands surviving on tourism, but there are also pop-culture references to things like Magnum P.I. (1980-1988) and Fantasy Island (1977-1984). Some fans felt like these elements harmed the credibility of the book as a believable part of the Known World.

None of these changes marked a large-scale changes in the “GAZ” series; instead they were one-off variations that didn’t go beyond this volume.

About Nautical Adventuring. Ship-side D&D adventuring was very popular in the Basic D&D series. It got its start with the D&D Expert Rules (1981) and X1: “The Isle of Dread” (1981). M1: “Into the Maelstrom” (1985) offered the “Sea Machine” naval combat rules, while this book included another variant. Even more detailed ship combat rules could be found in GAZ9: “The Minrothad Guilds” (1988).

Expanding the Known World. The Kingdom of Ierendi was described in “The Isle of Dread” as a trading nation ruled by adventurer-heroes. Beyond that, it hadn’t gotten a lot of attention prior to the release of “The Kingdom of Ierendi”.

However, Ierendi is located in the northwest corner of the Sea of Dread, a widespread area that had gotten considerable attention in both X1: “The Isle of Dread” (1981) and X7: “The War Rafts of Kron” (1984). All told this meant that the Sea of Dread was gelling as one of the best-detailed areas of the entire Known World — a trend that would only accelerate with the publication of GAZ9: “The Minrothad Guilds” (1988), which detailed a land lying to the northeastern corner of the Sea.

About the Creators. Also known as Anne C. Gray, McXready wrote the occasional game for TSR from 1985-1987. She author one other Known World adventure, CM5: “Mystery of the Snow Pearls” (1985), but her biggest financial success for the company may have actually be the All My Children board game (1985).

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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By thedarkelf007

I am a long term gamer, I run 6 RPG's a fortnight, host board game, card game and LANs each about once a quarter and have an addiction to buying more games. Games I am currently running are Pathfinder (1st and 2nd Edition) and Dungeons and Dragons (5th Edition).

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