This is the random city scene generator I used when my players ended up in the city of Thuleth. There's a lot going on in any city but Thuleth in particular is a self-contained, self-sufficient mega-city. I used the scene generator to work out what was happening on the fly as the PC's roamed through the streets. I had the city mapped out into vague zones, and specific area's had their own notes, but that didn't feel like enough for a whole city. This generator was for when the PC's wanted to explore the streets to see what they would bump in to.
You could use it too.
Bear in mind as it's a "scene" generator, it doesn't give adventure hooks, or obstacles, or monsters, it's just places that would be in a city. There's people doing things in the scenes, but it's up to you or the PC's to interact with them. Depending on how well you know your city , many of the things that could happen in the scenes could easily lead to on the fly adventures.
Before I get to the tables here's the lowdown on Thuleth that may explain some aspects of the my City Scene Generator.
Thuleth is a city in the middle of the desert. For some reason (or maybe a number of reasons) it has a super abundant supply of water within its black walls. It doesn't like to share this water though, and it also doesn't allow any one who wasn't born in Thuleth to enter the walls. Huge towers, huge walls and lots of guards keep outsiders out of the city. As such it's a relatively ordered place (with a more or less oppressive militaristic police force). Security is so good that any one actually inside the walls is kind of assumed to be allowed to be there and people that may not look local are left mostly un-bothered (mostly). The PC's I ran through the city had got in via the muddy tunnels that criss-cross the ground beneath the city. There is possibly a mud-man problem in the city.
The city is run by a senate elected by super rich noble class. The military is directed by the senate, who is directed by the super rich noble class. There is lots of people in prisons, the military has lost control of some of these prisons. Magical brass statues line the streets, these can direct lost citizens (they also record the comings and goings of citizens). There is farming land inside the city walls.
Thulethian's have oval shaped faces with eyes freakishly far apart. When they leave the city they don masks. They mostly leave the city to kill or enslave desert wanders or to trader further afield for luxuries and/or luxurious slaves.
(Thuleth) City Scene Creator:
"Roll for aspect" refers to rolling on my "everything" table to further define something (I will explain this in a later post).
1) Exits (Could be the number of streets, alley ways, canals or paths that run through an area):
77-99) Dead end/secret passage
2) Area Layout:
0-9) Narrow street/ alleyway
10-20) Wide street
21-31) Plaza or square
32-42) Grand water feature / lake
43-53) Two way street with plaza or square
54-64) Huge Building
65-75) Open field, paved area
87-97) Bridge or bridges
97-99) Area floating on water
3) General purpose of area:
0-8) Poor housing
9-16) Shops/trade (roll for aspect)
25-32) Entertainment (roll for aspect)
33-40) Religious (roll for aspect)
41-49) Guilds (roll for aspect)
50-60) Noble housing
61-78) Farming area (roll for aspect)
91-95) Public utility (roll for aspect)
96-99) Senate building
4) Building material:
15-28) White marble
29-43) Bare rock
71-80) Bejeweled blackstone
81-90) Natural or growing
5) Condition of buildings:
0-25) Pristine or brand new
26-50) Aged yet looked after
51-75) Falling apart or in disrepair
76-99) Shabby but structurally sound
6) Population in area:
0-12) Empty, abandoned
13-26) Busy with commoner foot traffic
27-40) Quiet but not empty
41-53) Busy with horse, cart traffic
54-67) Military proceedings (roll for aspect)
68-82) Religious proceedings (roll for aspect)
83-93) Guild proceedings (roll for aspect)
94-99) Senate proceedings (roll for aspect)
7) Content of area:
0-8) Water feature (roll for aspect)
9-17) Statue (roll for aspect)
18-26) Music or performance (roll for aspect)
27-34) Debate, arguing, demonstration (roll for aspect)
35-42) Lewd entertainment (roll for aspect)
43-50) Oppression (roll for aspect)
51-59) Slavery or weird trading (roll for aspect)
60-68) Conspiracy (roll for aspect)
69-77) Nobles in conflict with (roll again on this table)
78-86) Guilds in conflict with (roll again on this table)
87-94) Commoners in conflict with (roll again on this table)
95-99) Military or senate in conflict with (roll again on this table)