Wednesday 26 January 2022

Orb Monsters - The Gathering!

This game can be played with a referee conducting a game for a group of co-operative wizards in a party, or a group of wizards separately exploring a world/possibly battling each other, or with a referee playing a wizard/group of wizards solo exploring the world (tables for solo play are provided in this post).  

For all rules/gaming procedures not listed here use Kontext Spiel d6 (TLDR = roll a d6, low  = bad, high = good + the referee rules what happens using their knowledge of the in-game reality). Get a free copy here: 

(Important ideas for this post came from this post:

This game uses random Magic The Gathering cards profusely! When the rules below say “get/pull/use  a random card” it is referring to a random Magic the Gathering card. Use the following link to get a random magic card: (Then click the “random” button in the top left of the screen for another random card, ad infinitum! Note: You may like to use the advanced search option to lock in sets/types of cards and then - from there you could pick the card you like or roll a dice with the number of sides you have results for your search. Use to quickly make a dX). When the rules below say something like “A random spell/artifact/monster/etc just keep pulling random cards until you get the thing you need! Sometimes this may need to be a specific colour (Such as certain colour monsters/sentients and spells only appearing in that coloured land). The magic cards pulled by the referee of the game may need some changing/warping/only act as inspiration for their purpose in this game. The referee has total power to do this! Further, said inspiration may simply be the picture on the card, or the text, or a part of the picture or part of the text!

You are a wizard! Of middling physical and mental ability! You have: 

  • Wizardly regalia and accoutrement. 

  • 2 x Spell Orb, fist sized orbs that can hold 1 spell each. 

  • 2 x Monster Orbs, fist sized orbs that can hold 1 utterly subservient to you monster each. 

But, what type of wizard are you? 


  • White Wizard: +2 monster orbs, + 1 spell orbs (May only use white, green and blue spells/monsters). 

  • Green Wizard: + 3 monster orbs (May only use green, white and red spells/monsters). 

  • Red Wizard: + 3 Spell orbs (May only use red, green and back spells/monsters).  

  • Black Wizard: +1 monster orbs, + 2 spell orbs (May only use black, red and blue spells/monsters). 

  • Blue Wizard: +1 monster orb, +1 spell orb, starts with a random artifact (May only use blue, white and black spells/monsters. Artifacts do not have a colour associated with them). 

  • Grey Wizard: Receive no bonus orbs but may use spells/monsters of any colour! 

Each wizard starts with random spells/monsters of appropriate colours filling their orbs! 

Now, you are a wizard! Explore the world, and do what thou wilt! 

Additional rules: 

Spell Orbs: These are used by wizards to summon the spell housed within! Doing so causes the wizard some minor physical and mental strain! There can only be one spell in an orb at a time but it can be used an infinite amount of times! If a wizard finds a new spell they would like to have, they must either use an empty orb or replace a spell already contained within an orb they own. It takes a day of meditation to fill an orb with a new spell! 

Monster Orbs: These are used by wizards to summon the monsters housed within! Doing so causes the wizard some minor physical and mental strain! A monster housed in an orb is totally subservient to the wizard who owns that orb! There can only be one monster in an orb at a time but it can be summoned from /put back in the orb an infinite amount of times ! If a monster dies outside of its home orb, it is dead forever! A monster can only be housed within an empty orb! A wizard needs to free a monster to empty an orb! All wizards are competent in the incantations required to capture a monster in an orb - but the more subdued, still and calm a monster is the more likely it will be captured by an orb! Capture is never 100% definite! Monsters captured by wizards in orbs can be in or out of their home orbs as needed! They are generally safest in their orbs but there is nothing stopping a wizard having a monster out in the world at all times (although generally having monsters out of orbs in towns and civilized settlements is frowned upon and seen as a sign of aggression).  

A note on “Monsters”: Generally monsters are those beings that are non humanoid and non sentient. For the sake of simplicity, sometimes just using the “non humanoid” definition is easiest! Only the vilest and most evil of wizards would put a sentient humanoid into a monster orb! 

Sentients/NPCs: A wizard can employ/recruit/coerce/etc sentient beings into their service that are of the same colour as they can cast spells/control monsters of. The process of recruitment is left to the referee (solo or otherwise), but sentients are not under total control of the wizard and will act in accordance with their own motives, goals and self preservation! As a general rule a wizard may have up to two times their total number of orbs number of sentient beings in their service. 

Getting More Orbs: A wizard must slay another wizard to acquire more spell or monster orbs! Once the enemy wizard is killed an elaborate and arcane process, taking one day, occurs. The dead wizard and its orbs are melted away until only a single blank orb remains! The blank orb attunes itself to the first wizard that touches it! At that point the wizard must decide whether their new orb will be a spell or monster orb! More than one orb may be created if a particularly powerful wizard has been defeated by a weaker wizard, or no orbs created if a particularly powerful wizard defeats a much weaker wizard! 

Artifacts: Artifacts are colourless and grant special powers to those that own them! 

Combat, Damage and Death: Conflict is handled as per Kontext Spiel d6, with the following additional guidelines:  

  • All damage that would befell a wizard is magically siphoned to a summoned monster of their choice. If the wizard has no summoned monsters active in the world, or they are all dead, they instead receive that damage! 

  • Some things specific to this game that would take a Moment: Summoning a creature, issuing a COMPLEX order to a monster or a sentient being, casting a spell, a monster using a special ability or attacking.

  • A wizard and all of their summoned monsters and sentient beings under their control, can all attempt to do something in the same moment. 

Exploring the World (Map Generation)! 

  • Use a hex map! (

  • When a wizard enters a totally empty hex, pull a random card! That hex is whatever color card you pulled! Roll a d12, the result is how many connected hexes are also that color! (Colours in magic are associated with specific lands: White = plain, Red = mountain, Green = forest, Black  = Swamp, Blue = Island- so whatever colour a hex is - it is that type of landscape). 

  • A basic land card will give you a very nice visual description of the d12 coloured hexes you generated. It doesn't seem possible to get a random basic land card with scryfall (I think because it only recognised each type as one card with lots of different reprints). To overcome this, on the scryfall website get a totally random card, then click on its set description, then in the search bar for that set write the type of land you need, “Swamp, Island, etc”. You will then get a nice picture of that type of landscape and you can use that for all of the hexes you just generated! You could use different images per hex/or an image for a few hexes. Scrolling through the “Prints” list will give you different basic land cards of that type! 

  • Roll on the following tables to determine what else is in a hex beyond its colour! 

  • Note: Only wizards, sentinets, monsters and spells of the same colour, or of the colour left or right of that colour (see colour wheel) will appear in coloured hexes - bear this in mind when stocking the hexes!  You may need to pull several random cards to get a correctly coloured stocking item! 

  • Another note: On the map a wizard can see: The colour of the hex they are in, and the colour of all hexes connected to that hex, and any other hex they have visited! 

  • For solo play - generate the map as you go! 

What's in the hex?! (initial hex stockings must be of the same colour, or a colour to the left or right on the colour wheel, of the hex) 

  1. Empty 

  2. Empty

  3. Empty

  4. Empty 

  5. A town, city or village 

  6. An unusual structure 

  7. Monster/s 

  8. Monster/s 

  9. Monster/s 

  10. Monster/s and…

  11. Sentient/s

  12. Sentient/s

  13. Sentient/s and…

  14. A Spell 

  15. A Spell

  16. A Spell and 

  17. A wizard

  18. A wizard and 

  19. An artifact 

  20. An artifact and 

The “And” table, roll on this if you got a “and” in your first result! (And results can be any colour - refer to the colour relationship information to determine how the two stocking results will interact). 

  1. Monster/s 

  2. Monster/s 

  3. Sentient/s

  4. A spell 

  5. A wizard

  6. An artifact 

Travel Hazards: Each hex has a 25% chance of having some some sort of contextual, environmental hazard that makes traveling through it a strain on resources or possibly deadly! It is up to the referee to determine what exactly that hazard is - using the contents of the hex as inspiration.   

Stocking instructions: Use the following guidelines for populating the map’s hexes. 

A town, city or village: The population size is d100xd100. Pull a card until you get a building or structure, this is the base architecture of the settlement. Pull a card until you get a sentient (appropriately coloured) being, this is the people of the settlement. Pull a card until you get one mundane object or artifact and one magical object or artifact - these two things are the basis of the settlement's society. The referee can simplify or complicate this process as needed! See the colour relationship information to determine the relationship the population has with nearby monsters, spells and settlements. 

An unusual structure: Pull a card until you get a building or structure - this is the structure! Pull three more cards of any colour, whatever they are - they are inhabiting the structure! Refer to the colour relationship information to determine what those things are doing in the unusual structure! 

Monster/s: Pull an appropriate coloured monster card. d4 x d12 of that monster populate the hex! 

Sentient/s: Pull an appropriate coloured sentient card. d8 x d20 of those sentient beings are in the hex! Use the desire and colour relationship information to determine what the sentients are doing! 

A Spell: Pull an appropriate coloured spell card. That spell has warped/corrupted/changed the basic environment of the hex! It is now a weird and unusual place! A wizard can sense the spell magic here and mediate for a day to fill a spell orb with the spell (the spell stays in the environment though - the land still warped)!

A wizard: A wizard of the hexes colour is in the hex! They have d6 bonus orbs that the referee can allocate to spells or monsters! Their orbs are filled with random spells and monsters! Use the desire and colour relationship information to determine what the wizard is doing! If the referee would like, the wizard may have their total orbs x  2 random sentients of the same colour as them in their command. 

An artifact: Keep pulling cards until you get an actual "Artifact" card. That artifact is in the hex in a location of the referee's choosing!

Reactions, Desires and Relationships: 

The above colour wheel is important for reactions and relationships! 

Coloured beings (monsters, sentients, wizards) will react as follows to coloured wizards. Spells in the landscape will always react similarly to a wizard, as determined by the referee:

  • Initially friendly and kind to wizards of the same colour. 

  • Initially curious, inquisitive and wary of wizards of a colour left or right of their colour. 

  • Initially violently and openly hostile to wizards of colours opposite to theirs. 

Grey wizards always have a random reaction from the beings/spells they encounter:

  1. Initially friendly and kind 

  2. Initially curious, inquisitive and wary

  3. Initially curious, inquisitive and wary  

  4. Initially violently and openly hostile

  5. Initially violently and openly hostile

  6. Initially violently and openly hostile


Sentient beings generally have desires! If those desires aren’t obvious to the referee, roll on the following table! Sentient’s desires may form the basis of quests for wizards in exchange for said sentients skills, talents, resources, services, etc on competition of a quest.


  1. Heal or fix something

  2. Acquire valuable or useful resources 

  3. Change a situation that is intolerable 

  4. Bring death to a thing or being that is offensive 

  5. Acquire valuable or useful knowledge 

  6. Create a situation that is intolerable for an enemy 

Relationships :

All beings (sentients in town and the wilds , monsters, wizards) will have relationships with other nearby beings. The type of relationship is determined by the colour, the exact specifics of the relationships is determined by the referee:

  • Beings of the same colour are generally close allies or symbiotes. 

  • Beings of neighboring colours are generally co-operative, trading partners or otherwise tolerable of one another. 

  • Beings of opposite colours generally hate each other and are in open conflict or war. 


If a wizard requires something from a sentient (in a town or in the wilds), beyond basic equipment, food, water and shelter - roll on the following table to see if they have it/can/will provide it (at the discretion of the referee)!

  1. They have it! And will provide it cheaply! 

  2. They have it! And will provide it for a minor quest (see desires)! 

  3. They have it! And will provide it for a major quest (see desires)! 

  4. They do not have it! But know where to find it in the wilds! 

  5. They do not have it! But know of an enemy who has it! 

  6. They do not have it, nor know where it is! 

General Hex Stocking Guidelines:

The methods outlined above will give the referee a basic sketch of each hex - the referee is encouraged to run with that basic sketch and use it as an inspiration to fill in as much detail as needed! If a wizard seeks to explore an area in more detail (perhaps wanting to spelunk an unusual structure, or the sewers beneath a settlement, or a cave in a mountain, etc) the referee can combine their knowledge of the hex they are exploring with the following tables for quick random generation of rooms and places:

Roll on both tables and combine! 


  1. A place pristine and perfect 

  2. A place of production and creation 

  3. A place of storage and housing 

  4. A place of rot and death 

  5. A place of thinking and reflecting 

  6. A place of protection and security 


  1. Empty, or mundane objects 

  2. Mundane objects 

  3. Magical objects 

  4. A spell 

  5. Monsters or Sentient Beings 

  6. Monsters or Sentient Beings , plus roll again and combine

Combat A.I (For solo play or lazy referees!):


  1. Attack in an obvious manner

  2. Attempt an advanced combat maneuver 

  3. Hide / defend / regroup 

  4. Use a special / magical or technical ability 

  5. Heal or recover or defend until possible to do so

  6. Possibly Flee! (Roll again, if you get another 6, they do indeed attempt to flee!) 


Roll a d100 to determine the percentage of their total monsters an enemy wizard already has summoned!

  1. Summon new random monster or give complex battle order if all monsters summoned 

  2. Give complex battle orders to a random monster or sentient they are in control of 

  3. Cast a random spell 

  4. Cast a random spell or attack physically  if equipped to do so

  5. Hide / defend / regroup / heal / recover 

  6. Possibly Flee! (Roll again, if you get another 6, they do indeed attempt to flee!)