Today the review continues! We’re in the Inner Sea, a baffling ocean hundreds of miles beneath the Earth’s crust, sustained by technology from a prior world that existed when the day was 26 hours long.
The Towers are massive pillars that stretched from the floor to the ceiling of this strange aquatic realm; their presence provides a day-night cycle, reasonable pressure, and keeps the water from getting to a killing temperature. How they function is a mystery; while the Towers have hollows and passages, they’re also home to a seemingly limitless number of entities called curusa, which defend the Towers from any would-be invaders or explorers. It’s just as well; accidentally damaging a Tower might cause the heat or pressure control it provides to fail, killing everything near it.
The city of Carnullfar is one of the ways PCs might learn about the Inner Sea; unlike many of the prospecting cities of the Chearrans, it often travels to the surface to prospect and glean far from competition. The leader of the city quietly schemes to capture a breeding stock of humans, to experiment with them and see what might happen if the sapience-providing parasite of the Chearrans were bonded with one.
If you want a trade city, Achmosar, built in a Tower that’s largely become nonfunctional, is your place to be. Ruled by a construct eel-man that controls the Tower’s curusa, the biggest benefit of the place is the absolute ban on slavery and theft in the city. If you want it, you can probably find it somewhere in the massive three-dimensional city. Of some interest, if you also have Into The Night, is the fact that the city has a line node that leads out to the location of Branu’s Kiss.
The Serpent Forest is so named for the tube worms that form it, some stretching for miles in length. Most of the time the only dangers are the other creatures that dwell in the forest; sometimes an active serpent can be found in the grip of a hunger pang, sweeping through the rest of the forest and devouring anything it finds. One serpent, in particular, is of note – a massive behemoth some 20 miles long from where it emerges into the Inner Sea, it’s said to be intelligent and able to converse – and occasionally throws up a wad of organic material foreign to the Inner Sea, as the creature’s true length is enough to reach the surface of the world.
The Upwelling is a region where multiple Towers have fully failed, allowing the Earth’s internal fury to vent into the Inner Sea. Black smoker vents and magma-oozing fractures make up a fair part of the terrain, and the water is hot enough to slowly cook those who explore it. It wouldn’t be worth the effort to explore were it not for the way that the black smokers occasionally throw out artifacts and cyphers from somewhere even deeper in the Earth’s heart.
And that wraps up the locations of the sourcebook!
The bestiary segment of this sourcebook has a table arrange by level, but the actual creatures are arranged alphabetically; we’ve got a range from level 2 to 8 presented here, each with their own piece of artwork and familiarly detailed page of information. With 21 new creatures, there’s no real complaints to be had.
All in all, while there are few things that feel a little underwhelming and a few that have something of the feel of a love letter to some trope that I can’t quite lay a finger on, Into The Deep is a good sourcebook and a worthwhile addition to your Numenera game shelf. I’ll give it 7 tentacles out of 8.
And that, at long last, wraps this review up!