Bramblewood Forest

Bramblewood Forest
Official art of the Bramblewood Forest, by Olivia Samson from Vox Machina Origins II #2.[art 1]
Official map of the Bramblewood Forest and surrounding areas, by Andy Law from Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting.[art 2]
Full nameBramblewood Forest
Also known asThe Bramblewood
Location information
PlaneMaterial Plane
WorldExandria
ContinentTal'Dorei
RegionDividing Plains
Ecological information
TerrainForest
Fauna
  • Giant spiders
  • Awakened trees
Flora

The Bramblewood Forest, or simply the Bramblewood, is a thick forest surrounding the northern, western, and southern sides of Westruun. The northwestern edges of the Bramblewood skirt the base of the Cliffkeep Mountains, including the formidable Gatshadow Mountain. The trees range from gargantuan willows to its eponymous bramblewood tree.[1]

Description[edit | edit source]

The Bramblewood has streams of snow-melt from the Cliffkeeps, spiderwebbing under an impenetrable canopy of trees, across the thick, gnarled roots of the forest and into the plains beyond. However, despite its overgrowth, Bramblewood has two well-trodden paths; one leads west to the iron-rich Murdoon Mines at the base of the Cliffkeeps, while the other winds north to Gatshadow's peak.

The forest is the only source of the wood for Westruun and the main trading product for the city.[2]

Points of interest[edit | edit source]

The Trickfoot family have made the Bramblewood their home for generations.[3] Chetney Pock O'Pea and his family lived in a house in the Bramblewoods, outside of Westruun. During the Icelost Years, the house was abandoned.[4]

The adventure hook Nature's Anger, featured in Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, includes a sacred grove in the western part of the forest tended by three solitary druids who claim to keep the spirits of the forest at peace.[5]

In the adventure hook Blood of the Ruiner in the Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, one branch of the Ravagers, led by the elf Kalydria Darkeye, has created a fort within the Bramblewood Forest. There they perform a ritual to transform the local giant spiders into demonfeed spiders.[6]

Safety[edit | edit source]

Traveling through the heart of the Bramblewood off the often pre-cut paths can prove dangerous, as the forest tends to contract and swallow unused trails rather quickly. Some rather dangerous beasts do reside within and occasionally wander beyond the borders of the forest, and most folks know better than to enter the Bramblewood unless absolutely necessary.[1]

In both the Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting sourcebooks, the adventure hook Haunted Road starts with local tales of a spectral young woman, possibly a specter or a banshee, who sometimes appears along the road, sobbing and leading men deeper into the Bramblewood to never be seen again.[5][6]

However, the Bramblewood does seem relatively safe in comparison to, for example, the Frostweald. After Vox Machina slew Umbrasyl, Kerrek sent a few townsfolk with carts through the forest to retrieve the town's treasure from the dragon's lair at the peak of Gatshadow.[7] The townsfolk successfully made the round-trip journey without the need of an escort.

History[edit | edit source]

In 641 PD a wizard living in the Bramblewood Forest accidentally summoned thousands of chickens with a botched spell. Westruun began exporting the surplus poultry to surrounding regions. The event was dubbed as "The Great Feathering".[8]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Tree types and danger level obtained from Matthew Mercer's page on the Vox Machina Wiki. See the "Bramblewood" article.
  2. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, Chapter 3: "Tal'Dorei Gazetteer", p. 80.
  3. Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, Chapter 4: "Character Options", p. 158.
  4. "To Hurt Is to Heal" (3x79) at 2:53:58.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting, p. 53.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, Chapter 3: "Tal'Dorei Gazetteer", p. 81.
  7. "Hope" (1x56) at 1:46:43.
  8. Exquisite Exandria, p. 17.

Art:

  1. Official art of the Bramblewood Forest, by Olivia Samson from Vox Machina Origins II #2. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.
  2. Official map of the Bramblewood Forest and surrounding areas, by Andy Law from Critical Role: Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting. This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.