The Sobayid Atlas

Copyright 1994, Chessex, Inc.

Joseph Steven Coleman, Andrew Lecker, David Ackerman, Richard Eide, Janice Sellers, Stephan Wieck
Art: Miles Teves, David Ackerman, George Barr, Janet Aulisio Dannheiser, Alan Okamoto

Sobayid Cover

8 1/2 " x 11" saddle-stapled booklet, 64 pages.

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The Sobayid Atlas describes in some detail the Sobayid region in the southern part of the nation of Burdoth. The Sobayid is the southern province of the nation of Burdoth. Composed of rich farmlands with a number of cities, the Sobayid has the central and capital province of Ardis to the north, the Doben-Al desert to the west, and the East Trinnu Jungle Lands to the south. The Sobayid is an excellent area for players to use as an alternate starting point to Ardoth, and the booklet is designed for just that.

While the book is reminiscent of the earlier Companion Jorune: Burdoth book, it is more detailed, using the same page count to describe one province instead of all of them. In fact, the Burdoth book covers the Sobayid, but The Sobayid Atlas provides more information, maps of all of the cities with major roads labelled, and a fairly well-detailed map of Miedrinth, "the jewel of the Sobayid." There are chapters describing the geographical features and the wildlife to be found in them, including a number of new plants and creatures, and some recos not found in the third edition rulebook. Given that the Sobayid borders the East Trinnu Jungle Lands, there is useful information relating to that region as well: geographical features that feed into the ETJL, and information on the jers (jungle guides and harvesters), including their code of honorable conduct.

Following the examples of the earlier books, the atlas includes some history, but there's much more. There's a list of the prominent klades (cooperative living groups, something between a commune and a medieval guild), information on the social organization of the muadra in the province, and an entire chapter on the Seytra, a muadra sect that wants to use isho in a more prominant and beneficial way. The chapter includes history, and a collection of new dyshas to use.

While the book does not include any scenarios, it does include a number of adventure seeds, including the Cashiln Tunnel, a shanthic ruin that some local families have discovered.

Helpfully, the book closes with a glossary and index, as well as two tables of statistics for the creatures and items included in the book.

We felt the art in this book was wonderful. Ms. Dannheiser's art did not resemble the work of any other Jorune artists, but her vision of the world seemed no less authentic. The unsigned pictures of the flora and fauna were also very good and showed Jorune wildlife to good advantage. Miles Teves's work was mainly limited to reprints of pictures published in earlier Jorune products, with the exception of the cover, which we felt was not up to his usual standards.

Unless the sholari chooses to make it an important feature of his campaign, The Sobayid Atlas is not required to play the game. But we found it to be a very useful book, especially for groups considering expeditions to the East Trinnu Jungle Lands.

June 5, 2007

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