Sunday 30 July 2017

Suburb Crawling in Salt Field

First session of suburb crawling in the city . Generating the ideas/images to have ready at at the table to run the crawl  took four hours of mashing together a variety of images , the "chassis"/format of which can be found here.  I spent an additional hour tying together the ideas/images, jotting down some notes to formulate the basics of a couple of the suburbs, their guilds and other inhabitants.

The players didn't leave the suburb they started in, really only travelling a block the whole game. Admittedly they entered the hell hole which is "The Salt Fields" which occupied most of their time. I feel like I've got quite a few sessions lined up from what I've generated.

This post will give a run down of how the visual generator worked to build the basics of a suburb, a suburb profile for "Salt Field" and a play report.

The Generator Result: 

I'm going to try and write relatively stream of consciousness, to try and give some insight as to how my mind translates the results above into a playable suburb.

The field on the map and the pillars of salt (that's what I think they are) in the magic card go perfectly together. There is the Salt Fields of Salt Field. Crumbling stone architecture is explained by the corrosive nature of whatever the "salt" of the Salt Field is. Karma =  destruction due to bad deeds in the past = the field of salt is a punishment, an experiment gone bad (a weapon factory from the guild wars that's now a blight on the land). The Salt Field was once a park, then a weapons factory now a field of nightmares. Streets = thought = writing = the stone buildings are covered in engravings (in a hand barely known), this brings scholars to study them. Lighting = black holes = total and utter darkness, no street lanterns here. Climate = holy = holy wind (?) (not sure how I made this leap) = there is a constantly wind emanating from the salt field that cakes the whole damn suburb in the stuff. There was also a picture of a dog under "Mundane stuff", there fore there is guard dogs that keep order here. (These were later linked to the resident guild "Judges of Bellona").

I'll give a more structured description of the suburb below. The points of interest, guilds, neutral groups, threats were all generated using a similar "visual generator" as used for the suburb. Their generation was informed by the basics I now knew about "Salt Field".

Suburb Profile:

Name: Salt Field.
Suburb type: Ex weapon factory, corrupted by defunct guild during the guild wars.
Streets: All buildings and road covered in archaic engravings, caked in calcified salt.
Lighting: None, pitch black without own lighting.
Climate: Warm and salt windy blows from Salt Field, invigorates the lungs and gives feeling of robustness.
Architecture Description: Crumbling and blocky stone. Any past ornateness eroded by salty wind.  
Description: The titular Salt Field is a blessing and a curse for the suburb. Slowly killing it, slowly calcifying all of its buildings and inhabitants but brings travelling scholars and guilds, mercenaries and peddlers interested in dust.

Points of Interest: 
The Rat Skull Dustery: Giant rat skull building, either carved marble or an actual skull of some primeval beast, truth is not known. Variety of dust and accommodation provided.
Salt Field: Sprawling pitch black field covered in pillars of crumbling minerals with a variety of chemical properties. Haunted by those now addled, mindless and calcified due to over consumption of dust/salt.
Ruins of Madness: Collapsed building that seems to call to and collected the calcified salt addicts.

Resident Guild: 
Judges of Bellona: researchers and catalogers of the effect of over consumption of dust. They have their work cut out for them here. Red robe wearing. Have harness that straps a desk and lantern to their body allowing constant scribing and research on the go. Guarded by Salt Dogs.
Neutral Groups: 
Quagmire Arms: relatively successful mercenary group unfortunately moving deeper as a group into dust addiction. Hoping to unlock the secrets of Salt Field to give them an edge in battle.
Threats: Salt Dogs, Calcified madmen and women.
Mundane:  Dust peddlers and cooks, Scholars present to study engravings on the wall.

Some rumors/possible quests (extrapolated from the information above):

  • Judges of Bellona require research and collection of materials from either Salt Field or Ruins of Madness.
  • Specific member of Judges of Bellona wants protection as they observe first hand the Salt Field or Ruins of Madness. 
  • Scholars wanting rubbings of hard to reach engravings. 
  • Dust peddlers needing chunks of specific salt from the salt fields.
  • Family members wanting calcified salt addicts recovered from the salt fields. 
  • Quigmire Arms wanting intel or samples from the salt field. 

Play Report: 

"The Salt Fields" ended up being an impromptu dungeon (which I wasn't aware of it being at the start of the game). The party was tasked with finding some "crystal clear" salt chunks by the leader of Quagmire Arms. Two forays into the field followed, with the party terrified with either getting lost in the darkness, or being eaten alive by calcified madmen. No "crystal clear" salt chunks were found, but interesting black salt sample was found and returned to The Rat Skull Dustery. Of note was also the discovery of a stone shed with a bubbling fountain that seemed to remove salt calcification. Three saltmen were killed by the party, the rest were either run away from or avoided through guile.

A brief session of reconnaissance occurred between forays into the salt field by the "apeman" racoid party member. This involved climbing up and along the the second story of a tenement building. A crossbow aimed at his head, a snoring salt addict and a party of scholars were encountered. The scholars were oddly cheerful and were intrigued by the party members climbing skills and offered him a job taking rubbings on the higher levels of the building. Unfortunately the party member fell while attempting said rubbings and came very close to dying. The rubbings were never completed.

Tuesday 25 July 2017

Suburb Crawling

I'm running a game on Sunday and want to try out some suburb crawling in The City.  I imagine a party exploring a vast, never ending plane of urban environments, setting out from their ramshackle rented apartment, causing trouble and working for the endless guilds.

There's no central authority in The City, so it's really like exploring the wilderness with buildings instead of trees.


Suburbs will be laid out on a a4 sheet like this. I'm going to sketch out 10 of them and pull out a random sheet. That's where the party starts. Each time the party moves into a new suburb, I just pull out a new suburb sheet. Party maps out an evolving city map as more suburbs are uncovered.

Suburb Map: 

Suburb maps will be simplified, more like a grid like point crawl.The party will move in a linear fashion along major through fairs. Details for going down alley ways and into tenements handled by  details of the suburb sheet.  Random encounters will be relatively numerous and may result in a Point of Interest, NPC or Monster.

Random Encounters:

I'm going to have 20 of each the following "visual random encounter" profiles for Points of Interest, NPCs and Monsters. I can embellish on them as they come up. They now "live" in the suburb they were encountered in.


Encumbrance and carrying stuff rules will be relatively strict. as will maintaining supplies and keeping fed.

The following rules will be used for accommodation. Sleeping in the street will lead to high random encounter chance.

STR rating for accommodation reflects the general strength of the accommodations security. This can be increased in accommodation owned (not rented) by adventurers via magic, renovations and the employment of guards.  

The suburb in which the accommodation is located may have a bonus or penalty to an accommodations base STR rating (reflecting well patrolled streets and lawful residents or abandoned streets and a population of criminals, amongst other things).

  • Alley Shack or Lean To, 5 gold a week, STR 5
  • Wooden Apartment, 1 room, 10 gold a week, STR 8
  • Stone Apartment , 1 room, 20 gold a week, STR 10
  • Wooden Apartment, Several rooms, 50 gold a week, STR 8
  • Stone Apartment, Several rooms, 75 gold a week, STR 10
  • Top Floor of a Wooden Building, 100 gold a week, STR 10
  • Top Floor of a Stone Building, 150 gold a week, STR 12
  • Whole Wood Building, 200 gold a week, STR 12
  • Whole Stone Building, 400 gold a week, STR 14

  • Alley Shack or Lean To, 500 gold, STR 5
  • Wooden Apartment, 1 room, 1000, STR 8
  • Stone Apartment , 1 room, 2000 gold, STR 10
  • Wooden Apartment, Several rooms, 5000 gold, STR 8
  • Stone Apartment, Several rooms, 7500 gold, STR 10
  • Top Floor of a Wooden Building, 10 000 gold, STR 10
  • Top Floor of a Stone Building, 15 000 gold, STR 12
  • Whole Wood Building, 20 000 gold, STR 12
  • Whole Stone Building, 40 000 gold, STR 14

Thursday 20 July 2017

Gorgzuic Jungle Hex Generator

A mountain valley exploding with feverish and too alive jungle. The plants here quiver, sweat and writhe anxiously about the stonehomes of dead dwarfs. The whole mass of lurid vegetation is shuddering and anxious. It seethes with an unsure and confused fecundity. Beneath the slobbering flora, a guilty and sorrowful civilization rots. 

(A revival, revision and restructuring of this post)

(To be included in this eventual PDF) 

Mutant gorgzu tree

Field of plunging rock pools hidden by algae or vines.
Thick steam, heavily reducing visibility.
Granite butte erupting clear of the vegetation.
Ragged and derelict collection of wooden huts.
Jagged stone hills, thick with jungle vines and vegetation.
d8 roomed decayed dwarf villa of ornate carved stone.
Cavern like canopy caused by truly enormous trees.
Field of dwarf statues, toppled or still standing, several elephants tall.
Rocky and desolate glade, framed by walls of vegetation.
Entrance to a moss and vine choked cavern with d6 chambers.
Cliffed valley, curtains of vines and a carpet of moss.
Decaying dwarf look out tower, mounted by iron bars, affording a far view.
Valley of spherical boulders held in place by a criss crossing of vines.
Crisscrossed vinerope bridges, at a height halfway to the canopy.
Black watered lake, covered by a film of roiling jungle scum and too large lily pads.
Ravine, dividing the area. 50% chance of rickety vinerope bridge.  
Field of vine covered stone, hidden gaps, drops and cliffs that fall to lower cavern below.
Vegetation is grey, black, crumbling like ash and dead. Trees will collapse with ease.  
Gaping cave or tunnel, at ground level, houses a shady pocket of dark jungle.
Vines, ferns, fronds so thick and choking as to be solid wall of seething wet greenery.

Insects, d4:
1) Shaded areas infected with fat, glowing grubs.
2) Horde of scuttling hand sized stick-crabs.
3) Infestation of dog sized wood borers, gorged on felled trees.
4) Stalking translucent millipedes, large as snakes.
Birds, d4:
1) Purple plumage, green beak. Man length wingspan. Perches and glares balefully, never moves. Rumbling croak.   
2) Indigo plumage, piercing green eyes. Pigeon sized. Hunt as flock and ravenously consume meat to bone. Hiss whistle.
3) Pink, naked ostrich. Man height. Jabbing, razor beak. Cackle warble.
4) Purple plumage, Pink, straw-like beak. Fist sized. Puncture and suck water supplies then flit away. Giggling chirp.   
Weather, d4:
1) Thick gloaming clouds cover the sky and bring an unnatural darkness.
2) Oily, black, sludgy rain. Will foul food and water supplies.
3) Crystal clear snap rainstorm. Fresh, invigorating but ultimately dampening.   
4) Too thick and breathless, high pressure air that brings pounding headaches.
Empty, d4:   
1) Simmering heat, leaves sometimes sizzle and leak.
2) Too large leaves wrap themselves about passerbys.
3) Sweaty dew covered leaves rain when disturbed.
4) Trees collapsing under the weight of their own foliage and invading vines.
Distant noises, d4:
1) Intoned ghostly dwarf mining chants.
2) Hearty chuckling, coming from the trees above, just out of sight.
3) Utter and suspicious silence, no noise of insects, wind, rustling, birds, etc.
4) Melodious bird song in all directions.
Foul miasma, d4:
1) Shimmering orange gas. Desiccates, dries and cracks the skin.
2) Low to the ground tendrils of indigo smog. Brings sloth and disarray to internal organs.
3) Slow swirling twisters of white  smoke. Steals the air from lungs.
4) Greasy, prismatic, wet vapour cloud. Brings horrific jungle dreams.
Fruit/Flowers, d4 types:
1) Melon sized putrid green passion fruit. Tasteless. Gives the feeling of floating for a day (due to not being able to feel legs).
2) Shining and reflective grey grapes. Bitter. Warms the body.
3) Fat orange tomatoes. Implode into formless goop when touched.
4) Deep purple bananas, erupting from small bushes growing from animal corpses. Sweet and smooth. Feels too heavy in the gut.
Animals, d4:
1) An ambulatory mushroom vaguely in the shape of a turtle. More turtleshrooms erupting from its shellback. Obviously shambles forward spreading spores.
2) Giant ocelot, playing gleefully with the head of a jungle dwarf. Once bored or hangry: prowls, stalks and licks lips from upper branches.
3) Pink and naked, burrowing mole ape. An abundance of loamy collapsing tunnels are nearby.
4) Six legged and spidery tree bear. Terrified and timid. Will moan hauntingly from a distance.
Treasure, d6:
1) Axe + 1, Skeletal pig design.
2) Bejeweled mining pick, 1000gp.
3) Fine cloak, the colour of blood, never fades or tears, 100gp.
4) Shield + 1, spiked (can be used as a weapon).
5) Blood red gem, 500gp.
6) Milky white potion of skin calcification (+1 CON, -1 DEX).

Held in, d6:
1) Stone box covered in wax, overgrown with vines.
2) Leather sack, nailed high up to stone or tree.
3) Glinting bird nest, with other gaudy and shining refuse.
4) Soggy and moss encrusted hidey hole.
5) Slimey and wet stone chest.
6) A misshapen and unhealthy looking pale mushroom that has grown around object.

Saturday 15 July 2017

Magic Item Generator

What is it? d12:  

1) Hat or helmet (envelopes the head, affects the organs there)
2) Jewelry (worn ostentatiously, passive background magic) 
3) Large magic stone or crystal ball (must be held or operated, affects the external world)
4) A piece of furniture (requires reclining in, magic occurs while resting) 
5) Body armour (envelopes and affects the body) 
6) Shield (magic is always defensive in nature) 
7) Wand (d100 charges) 
8) Robes, cloak, cape or clothing (affects appearance) 
9) Boots, sandals or anklet (affects transport and ambulation) 
10) Melee weapon
11) Ranged weapon 
12) Gloves and gauntlets (Allows fine motor magical manipulation) 

What is it made of? d6: 

1) Plant Matter (Wood, cloth, braided vine, leaves and the like, affinity for the natural world and balance, prone to decay). 
2) Mineral Matter (Shine, rigid, clanking, wrought, bejewelled, tough but unwieldy, protective but confining) 
3) Animal Matter (Leather, bone, fur, skins, feathers, conducive to baseness and consumption)
4) Monster Matter (Slime, eyes, claws, still living organs, too large and mutated, warped and unnatural, revolting and corrupting) 
5) Humanoid Matter (Amalgamations of tools and uniforms, rules, measurements, geometrics, brings temporary order and hierarchy)
6) Ethereal matter (Wreaths of plasmic smoke, pulsating, glowing, tears in reality, utter organicy, awe inspiring but can cease to exist at any moment).  

Magical Power? d12: 

1) Invigoration and robustness of the physical body
2) Sway over other sentient beings through speech and thought
3) Sway over the wilds and the natural world 
4) Ease of store and supply of survival necessities (victuals, water, shelter) 
5) Insight into future or past events 
6) Bolster or diminish the health of others 
7) Far sending of physical/mental manipulations (vile, fair and mundane) 
8) Sway over transportation and travel of self and others 
9) Summoning of things that don’t normally exist 
10) Shell, encasing, protection and dispelling (physical, magical and mental) 
11) Increasement of perception and bolstering of the mind  
12) Illusions, transformations and unreal alchemy 

What is its aspect? d10, d4:

Good, peaceful, kind
Holy, ordered, right
Light, illumination, enlightenment
Floating, peace, meditation
Air, empty, vacuum
Ethereal, wispy, ghostly
Wind, blowing, unseen mover
Storm,  rapid movement, speed
Tiny, shrinking, wasting away
Invisible, translucent, clear
Intangible, non corporeal, fading
Life, regrowth, rejuvenation
Value, gems, gold
Thought, philosophy, intellect
Internal organs, viscera, blood
Reflection, mirror, stillness
Water, cycles, karma
Equalization, law, justice
Cleansing, alkalizing, evaporation
Procrustean, rigidity, incarceration
Wildness, out of place, overgrown
Bestial, savageness, feeding
Nature, grove, peace
Chaos, disorder, mutation
Fire, explosions, heat
Destruction, rubble, ruin
Limbs, appendages, grasping locomotion
External action, destiny, prophecy
Monstrous, terrifying, abomination
Gargantuan, giant, enormous
Enveloping, enclosed, soft embrace
Straining, breaking, cracks
Deep, below, underground
Earth, soil, stone
Solid, mass, black holes
Time, dust, history
Evil, hate, pain
Profane, cruelty, desecration
Darkness, shadows, loss
Death, rot, decay
Magic helms of plant matter

Magic jewelry of monster matter

Magic furniture of plant and animal matter