I’ve been wrestling with something regarding the first shot of Ep 3 that I resolved this week, which leads into a bit of background on the world of Operation: PUG.
It may surprise you to learn that the video game world our heroes have been zapped into isn’t totally arbitrary. About 20 years ago I spent a weekend coming up with a fantasy world that was going to be used for a D&D campaign (that never ended up happening) but that world has formed the backbone of a number of things in the years since. It has been a custom Neverwinter Nights server, the setting for my long-neglected comedy novel, and now the video game world that the characters of the cartoon inhabit. The name of the world is Ruunholm*.
A lot of the major locations and history of the world have been established for a long time. The land is divided into four realms, each defined by a prominent river that all converge at the center: Priam Township. The Cobalt Kobold Inn, which we visited in Ep 2, is introduced in my unpublished book The Chronicles of Ruunholm: Vol 1 thus:
“The inn was called The Cobalt Kobold. It was just one of those things. There definitely was a story behind it, as the small portrait painting of the dog-faced creature lovingly set by the bar with a small candle near it would indicate—but you either knew the story or you didn’t. The Cobalt Kobold was a second home to many wayward souls, and none of them could pinpoint the exact moment when they were told the story of the name’s origin. At some point you just knew it, so long as you spent enough time in the company of the strange clientèle and close proximity to enough of the house ale.”
The issue I was facing regarding Ep 3 was this: As we are now moving out into the larger world (The Dark Forest to the West of Priam), I thought it would be an opportune time to introduce a graphic of the map of Ruunholm. Problem: While a lot of the map is known, some of it is changing for purposes of the show and at any rate it’s far too big and complex to create quickly.
My solution is what you see in the photo above. Ep 3 will open on an already-zoomed-in map, and follow our heroes path toward the Dark Forest, but won’t yet reveal the whole map. As we go on the plan is to start filling out more & more of the map until, at last, the whole is revealed.
Welcome to Ruunholm. Tip not included.
*fun fact: The original name of the world was Ruunwald, but that name ended up being nearly identical to a dungeon in Skyrim, I was displeased to discover.