BD: Yes I have a book in mind with a medieval setting (I love that setting if no one has noticed.
) and probably some Norse elements as well. The rpg wise there is little that translates over except for some names (Idona, Viddall) mainly and toying with the Heloki.
I haven't heard about that test, at what distance did that longbow pierce the kevlar?
As far as guides, Red brings up a good point. Now under normals circumstances I would say yes a map isn't good enough. However, the map the group uses if far from normal (it changes etc.) so its not a far reach to say that guides are not needed. Further since they would know that the group wouldn't/couldn't trust the inhabitants of Tarsis they would have made sure a guide wasn't needed.
As far as the underworld part. Why would the questmakers have the group go into the underworld? What purpose does it serve?