Monday, November 10, 2014

Delving deeper into Delving Deeper, part the third


Third in the series, moving along to the classes section. The first page alone, before we even get to the first class, has some doozies in there!

Hit Dice
A return to the old days of gaming, DD sets the hit dice at just d6s, all of the races, monsters and characters are to use the d6.
The numbers of hit dice given on the following charts are always six-sided
I like this. For me, for whatever reason, I like the d6 so much better than all the rest of the dice. The d4 weird to hold and just an odd die. The d8 I hate, just an annoying die for me.  The d10 is cool with me, likely due to my love of the old Marvel Super Heroes RPG. The d12 is another odd dice, don't care for it. So sticking to the d6 is cool with me. Yes folks, I am prejudice against certain kinds of dice. D12, ugh, hate it. And that blasted d30 that shows up, yuck.

Experience Points
First and foremost, DD jumps in immediately and clearly states that 1 gold piece is equal to 1 experience point.
(XP) are earned primarily by recovering (not merely finding) treasure
No question about it here, this is a game about finding monsters and taking their treasure. One point I like here is that they point out it is not just the finding of treasure but the recovery of the treasure. I take this to mean the gathering of treasure and getting it out of the dungeon. How many of us have sat at the table and had a player jonesing for their cut of the XP the moment they find the treasure? Not here boys, gotta get that shit out of the dungeon and all the way back to town.

This brings up a question of sorts. I typically hand out treasure and XP as the adventure continues. In my mind this reflects real life as you learn through doing things. If we take this course of action, instead characters would progress in levels typically when exiting the dungeon.  Not sure how much I like this approach but I do see the value in making it treasure that they recover to the surface. After all, would Indiana Jones be famous if he found the treasure but never actually got it out of the tombs? "Really guys! I found it! Really!!! I swear!"
Experience points are also earned by defeating monsters. 100 XP are awarded for each hit die of each enemy defeated. The referee may increase the base award for especially dangerous enemies including those with poisonous, paralyzing, or multiple attacks.
Going along with what appears to be a continuing theme of the game is the GM here has the opportunity to provide additional XP for the characters defeating especially vicious and tough creatures.
Experience awards for defeating monsters are scaled according to the ratio of the dungeon level to the character level so that higher level players are encouraged to seek appropriate challenges. If a party of 1st level characters were to defeat a dozen 1 HD orcs on the 1st dungeon level they would be awarded 1,200 XP between them. If a party of 6th level characters defeated the same orcs they would earn one-sixth as many XP because they are 6th level characters exploring the 1st dungeon level.
Whoa. This is like the 4E challenge level taken to a whole new level. I guess this makes sense but damn, it would make getting to those higher levels that much harder and really, really makes the claim that 1st dungeon levels are easier than the lower levels. As most my dungeons are only one level, I guess this means that odds are I would ignore this rules and simply award XP in accordance to the struggle the characters faced.

Now comes the big kick in the teeth:
Note that no character can advance more than a single experience level in a single adventure. He will always fall at least 1 XP short of gaining a second experience level with any excess XP discarded.
Ouch! Really? This will surely mean that character MUST return to the surface and get a breath of fresh air now and then. This coupled with the rule above regarding treasure recovery would mean the characters will need a locale to return to so they might recover from the hardships of the dungeon. Which, I guess, makes some sense actually. Even seasoned warriors need a break from always being on alert and in combat, otherwise PTSD ensues.

I missed it during my first read, but even the first paragraph re-enforces this idea that returning to a base of operations and resting is how characters go up in level:
by returning to a safe haven after accumulating the necessary number of experience points
All that is from just a single page in the book! Whew! It is going to take me a bit to get through the book, eh?

Others posts in this series:
Part one.
Part two.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Ruins of Cullen Moray


The old halfling sat back, his eye glossing over as memory flooded his vision.  He let out a long, low breath before he continued again.

"Aye, the Cullen Moray, a bastard of a place," He said in his gruff and scratchy voice, no doubt a result of the horrible scar on his neck. I had asked how the old timer had gotten the scar and that was how the discussion had begun. "From the outset we knew the place would be hell. That is why we hired porters to help carry our gear. Only one made it out alive, and that is a questionable statement."

"Why did you go if it was notorious for being dangerous?" I asked, my naivety  coming to the surface.

He stared at me a moment as if in disbelief and then broke the silence with a deep laugh. "Whores and wenches my boy!" His thunderous laugh turned heads our way. "Whores, boy, we wanted gold and fame and the warm bodies that follow when you have done a great and heroic thing. The Cullen Moray was famous for being full of wealth and neigh untouched, the place was dangerous and had produced more bodies than gold but old Ferith knew it was ripe for the taking. Bogort and Veyleen agreed and off we went."

He took another swig of the stout I had purchased for him. I motioned for the maid to refill it, I wanted as much information from the old timer before I headed into the depths of Cullen Moray myself. Information is power they say and I was not going to look away when fortune dropped one of the few men to have survived a trip into its blackest levels.

"Ferith had stumbled across a map, a rough map at that," He leaned in and winked his one good eye at me. The other was hidden beneath a horrible scar that marred the right side of his face. This fellow had seen some shit, that was for sure. "Came across it in the Felled Kracken of Dorven, a rough map drawn by a madman to be true. It proved to be less than accurate but enough to wet our appetite and get our hopes up. Traps and tricks were written on it. We happily ventured into the place thinking we had one up on fate. Ye know what happens when you think you can one up fate boy?"

"Uh," Was all I could muster and this proved to less than satisfying for the old timer.

"Gods boy! You think you are ready for Cullen Moray?" He slammed the mug down on the thick table causing a loud crash to echo through the pub. "Do ye, boy?!"

"I...I," I coughed to clear my thought, and to stall to clear my thoughts. "I was hoping that with any information you could provide I might be able to survive the first few levels."

He studied me again. His eye danced over the leather armor my father had given me and then moved to my sword as it rested at my side. The sword had been in my family for well over six generations and was rumored to be magical, especially against unnatural creatures.

"Old steel, dwarven-forged, its a fine blade boy, but you are going to need more to survive Cullen Moray. You asked about the place, I shall tell you, keep me mug full," He finished the current mug and  slid it across the table. As if on cue, Melanae stepped up and filled it to the brim. I gave her a quick smile and she winked back. The halfling took a long sip.

"Cullen Moray is an old keep, long disused. It is only two levels but the levels are taller than normal, allowing for the thick floors and walls, the keep was meant to defend against the giants that make the valley their home. Aye, just getting to the keep is a challenge, the road is washed out and steep and the giants are everywhere, having enjoyed the valley once their attack on the keep proved successful."

"It is said their attack was lead by a horde of large bulettes, nasty beasts they are, and they tore down the gate on the northeast corner and left a gaping hole, goes straight to the top of the keep. That's where we went in...the first mistake we made. Gulan, our master thief, climbed the walls and hooked up a rope for the rest of us to climb up to the second level. We were figuring it would be safer to enter from the upper levels. We were not alone."

He takes another drink. When Melanae slides past I stop her and order two of their their biscuits and gravy. I am hoping I can keep him talking as he is finally getting to the meat of the information.

"Ghost, damned ghosts. They cover the second floor, scores of 'em. Pilgrath...he was our second holy man, tried his whole turning bit. Ghosts did not like that much and jumped him. By the time Duniden...our other holy man...and the rest of us got them off of Pilgrath his hair had turned white and he was physically drained. Scratches covered his body and he sat there, muttering nonsense. Took us an hour to calm him down. Gulan did a thorough search and found enough gold that we could not carry it all, also some trinket on a chain he put around his neck. Some fancy metal work and was most likely some religious thing or another. When Pilgrath calm around we headed down to the main floor. Where they were waiting..."

His voice trailed off and he got quiet again, his good eye staring off into the distance over my shoulder. I waited, now I was hooked and sure he was giving me good information. The biscuits and gravy arrived and I tore into them, starving. The halfling let the plate sit before him. Moments past quietly between us and I am certain I saw a tear start to form but he held it back, clearing his throat before he continued again.

"The main floor was terrible. The bulettes that tore down the gate? Their kin were waiting for us in the floor. We were just at the bottom of the stairs on the main floor when an explosion of dirt and rock filled the air and they were all around us. Pilgrath and Gulan were the first to go down. Luckily Bogort had encountered these beasts before and made quick work of two of them, Duniden was able to heal Pilgrath and get him back into the fight and I held one at bay so Gulan could scamper away from the thing's beak. It was bloody and terrible."

"It sounds terrible!" I let slip and he gives me a hard look. Then his eye lit up as he noticed the food before him and dives in. Seemed his tale had made him thirsty and hungry. "Sorry about that, it sounds horrible. Never crossed paths with a bulette but I had heard tales, fiercesome creatures. Heard they can snap a man in two with their..."

He stops and looks at me, spoon halted halfway to his mouth. "Boy, let me stop you right there. Gulan got away but it was minus one arm. The bulette took it clean off, right at the elbow."

"Oh," I said, biting my tongue. "Poor Gulan."

"He was fine, tough lad he was. Duniden patched him up after Bogort and Veyleen took care of the remaining bulettes." He took a few bites. "It was good Duniden was there, turns out we would need Gulan later, in the depths, even if he only had one good arm remaining."

to be continued......



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Saturday, November 8, 2014

Delving deeper into Delving Deeper, part the second


Second in the series, just going to look at a few pages this time, continuing at page 9 of the POD, 4th version of the rules. My goal when I started this series was to merely ramble about on my own thoughts as I read through the rules but as I am reading through this rulebook it is really causing me to step back and look at what I consider ODD and what I thought was 'correct' when I think about my own games. Excuse the rambling about midway through this post. ;-)

Alignment
First thing,you should know I like simple game rules. You add a bunch of rules and complexity, odds are I am not going to like it. Here DD strips the alignment down to the core: Law, Chaos, and Neutral. You either like order, hate it, or don't give a crap. I can dig that.
Law is civility and order and upholds the greater good. Chaos is anarchy and brutality and undermines the greater good. Neutrality is neither for law nor chaos but for the individual and for those with no stake in the grander contest.
I like this approach as to me, as a modern person order, law and 'good' are all essentially the same thing. Perhaps not exactly the same thing but if you look at them with broad strokes I think we can agree that they are similar enough that they could all be equal. The same could be said for chaos, anarchy, and evil.

I like this simple angle the game takes. It fits well with the rest of the game rules and the idea that a simple definition has a ripple effect and causes the referee and player to put their own thoughts and ideas into the simple structure. That thief who breaks in and steals from a rich merchant, is he good? Evil? Or neutral? I think he could be any of them. You need to look at the whole character to get a clearer picture.

As I have read this rulebook one thing has become more and more clear and has helped me revise and tighten my own definition of what OSR means to me. For me, the OSR is not a particular ruleset, or even a genre of games, instead it is a particular way of gaming. In my own personal belief, the OSR has come to mean that a character is not solely defined by the written down information on their character sheet but they are so much more. A character in an OSR game is an amalgam of the character on the character sheet and the player, it is not merely the information on the character sheet. The character sheet is a foundation upon which the player builds the character they want to play. I think this is a powerful statement on why I like the OSR much more than other games out there.

But, this is not a thesis on the OSR, so I will let that rest until another day.   ;-)

Determine Abilities
Each is determined, in order, by the referee with a throw of three six-sided dice producing scores between 3 and 18.
You catch that? Yeah, 3d6 in order. I get that and have seen it before. That is not what I am referring to. I missed it the first time I read through it. Look again. You might have missed by the referee. This is interesting and I am not sure I would implement this rules. Taking the dice away from the player and putting them in the GM's hands feels to me as wrong.

I mean if the player rolls the dice it is random but it is random at the player's hands and that feels right to me. Then again, it would be interesting to essentially create the character skeletons to the players and let them build their characters around that. I find this interesting, but iffy.

I find the idea of putting players in a bit of a bind, forcing them to think a little harder by putting constraints on them, to be very exciting. Perhaps a player always plays a mage but he comes to the table and gets handed a character with abilities that are not well-suited to being a mage. Perhaps the player is the sort that takes this poorly, but perhaps we are lucky and we have a player that takes this seemingly negative situation and spins it on its head. Perhaps they create a much more interesting character to play. In my experience, limitations breed creativity, so perhaps this could be a very interesting angle to take.

Movement Rates
Movement rates allowed by load are for man-sized and man-like types. These should be scaled appropriately for other types but any character reduced to half his movement rate is considered to be encumbered.
Remember my earlier post where I discussed man-types? Here it adds the "man-sized" and "scaled appropriately for other types" but I don't think that changes the base intent here. In the previous entry in this series Man-Types were defined as "all men and other creatures of same basic proportions" and thus, by my reading, DD makes no distinction on movement rates based on race.

Others posts in this series:
Part one.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Delving deeper into Delving Deeper, part the first


Yeah, pun intended.

So I recently picked up Delving Deeper in the POD version mostly based on the fact that I own the little whitebox version from Brave Halfling Publishing. I liked it then but have never had a chance to run the game. I have had the book for about two weeks now but am just now getting a chance to take a look at it. So I thought it fun (for me anyway) to do an in depth look at the rules and compare the text to my own impressions and thoughts on the game. This will all be my personal thoughts on the POD version of the game, currently version 4 of the rules.

Cover & the book
First thing, I really like the cover. Pure black and white goodness. It is a bit busy but therein lies the magic. Every time I look at the cover I find something I previously missed. The cover reminds me of the early artwork I encountered when I was first exposed to Dungeons & Dragons thirty years ago.

The book is perfectly sized. The book just about matches my tablet, a seven inch Asus MeMo Pad HD, and would be perfect to slip into a bag or backpack at a convention. This takes me back to my early days of playing D&D where I would show up at a friends house, grab some dice, a pad of paper and some graph paper and run with it. This may be totally nostalgia but THIS is how I want to game. I do not need nor want three big hardback tomes to run my games.

Coming in at 130 pages this may not fit the so-called "Matt's Rule" of twenty pages but there are enough rules to cover most situations and provide a foundation upon which we could build a massive gaming campaign. The text is not too small that the words are hard to read and the author +Simon Bull has done a splendid job with layout and text, providing a natural and easy read of the rules.

Introduction 
The introduction covers some of the typical bits and pieces but then I came across something that caught my eye:
"Volume III is intended as a reference for referees. These contain all manner of monsters—from androids to zombies.."
Ok, ok, wait, what? Androids??? Hmmm, this interesting, perhaps this is not what I expected. Paints this game in a different light than most other seemingly fantasy based games I have read (owned).

The next piece that gave me an eyebrow raising moment was the following passage:
"Heroic-Types include all man-types of heroic stature and all monsters that represent a heroic threat. Collectively these are all creatures with 3 or more hit dice but fewer than 7 hit dice."
This game clearly defines and spells out that people, and all monsters, 1 and 2 hit dice are considered normal joes. So at first level a player should not expect to be doing amazing feats or superhuman acts of heroism. This ain't your son's D&D.  ;-)

Also of note, and this will come up later, the use of the term "man-types" in the first sentence. This curious term caused me to scan ahead and look at the definition of this term.
"Man-Types are all men and other creatures of same basic proportions including androids, cavemen, dwarfs, elves, gnolls, gnomes, goblins, halflings, hobgoblins, kobolds, lizardmen, mermen, nixies, orcs, and pixies."
Again, androids shows up. Cavemen? This wide swath of different creatures is quite interesting.

The next thing that caught my eye was a further defining of the level of play. Creatures at 3 hit dice to 6 are considered heroic and those 7 and up are considered superheroic. This means that there are three levels of play in DD: normal folks, heroic, and superheroic.
"Superheroic-Types include all man-types of superheroic stature and all monsters that represent a superheroic threat. Collectively these are all creatures with 7 or more hit dice."
Continuing along this caught my eye:
"Dice (three six-sided dice and one twenty-sided die per player)"
Uht oh. Six-siders and a twenty-sider, you know what that means. Everything does damage in versions of d6. Most likely that means all weapons causing d6 damage. This will irk many players. Me? I am cool with it, but I can feel the grumbling amongst the players already.


So ends my first in this series. Already I am starting to see a few things that will not match up with so called 'modern' games or what many think of when they think of Dungeons & Dragons. This, despite the fact that DD comes from the very same roots that modern D&D comes from. More to come.....

The Crash of the San Lucent

Another quick map from the desk of SFC Jackson:

The San Lucent crashed into a large asteroid during it seven year mission to explore the unknown universe. Unfortunately all they found was mushrooms, death and some alien crystals.

Sucks for them.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Quick Map from last week

Last week I posted a photo of a map I made at work over a quick break. I think I spent around 15 to twenty minutes on it, so nothing really special but I thought I would scan it for those so inclined and interested. This was inspired by an adventure posted to G+ by +Matthew Lowes

The Original Map:


Color scan:


Cleaned up black & white for my old school fellows:

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Random items for a post-apocalypse zombie game


I started a Play by Post game over on G+ with a friend of mine and I started the game a bit after the post-apoc happened and after he had been adventuring for a while. He asked me what gear her had available, and I thought "Oh, I will go find a table for random items you might find in a PA zombie game!" Except it doesn't exist, least not that I could find with my seventeen levels of Google-Fu.

So like any good OSRer worth his weight, I made one.

1: Weapons
  1. Knife, hunting
  2. Bow, Composite
  3. Katana, not hardy, meant for display, will break 1 in 6 on any strike
  4. Ax, hand, mae for chopping trees, heavy duty
  5. Pistol, 9mm, 17 rounds
  6. Rifle, hunting, 23 rounds
  7. Machete, 18in blade, sturdy
  8. Kukri, heavy duty
  9. Spear, 6foot
  10. M4, 70 rounds in three magazines
  11. Colt .45, 21 rounds
  12. Slingshot, 45 steel balls
  13. Bow, hunting (non-compound), 11 arrows
  14. Shotgun, 19 rounds
  15. Sword, long, sturdy
  16. Shovel
2: Clothing
  1. Boots, sturdy, hiking
  2. Shoes, running
  3. Coat, winter
  4. Parka, GORTEX, water rrepellent
  5. Extra set of clothing (top, bottom, underwear and socks)
  6. Gloves, military grade
  7. Body Armor, covers chest region
  8. Under Armor, top and bottom, moisture whisking
  9. Coat, extreme cold weather
  10. Poncho, large, waterproof, can be stretched out to use as cover
  11. Hat, pick a style
3: Tools
  1. Rope, 50'
  2. Backpack
  3. Compass, pocket
  4. Quickclot, 2ea
  5. Bag, sleeping
  6. Binoculars
  7. Net, 8 square feet
  8. Canteen, 1 quart
  9. Gerber Mulit-tool
  10. Chemlights, various colors, 2d6
  11. Flashlight, battery powered, 2 C batteries
4: Miscellaneous
  1. Rope, 50'
  2. Coins, gold, 2d6
  3. Can Opener
  4. Bandages, clean
  5. Bug repellent, 1can
  6. iPod, no charge
  7. Map, regional
  8. Journal w/pencil
  9. Chalk, 4 pieces
  10. Fire starter, strike and spark
  11. Zip-lock bag, various sizes, 2d6
  12. Mirror, pocket
  13. 550 Cord, green, military grade, 50 feet
  14. 100mph tape, OD Green, 1 roll
  15. Freeze dried meal, add water, 3ea
  16. First Aid Kit
5: Food
  1. Canned vegetables, d6
  2. MREs, Army standard, d6
  3. Water, bottled, .5 liter, d6
  4. Canned fruit, d6
  5. Granola Bars, box, mixed flavors
  6. Candy, one bag
  7. Mixed nuts, bag
  8. Vitamins, men's, 1 bottle
  9. Apples, 4ea
  10. Canned meat, 2ea (yuck!)
  11. Dried Fruit, 1 bag
6: Misc Big Fun
  1. Grenade, Concussion, d6
  2. M18 Claymore, 1 ea
  3. MM1 Mini-More, 50 feet is 2 x 16 feet, 3ea
  4. Rifle scope, military grade
  5. Crossbow, 7 Arrows
  6. Solar Panel, portable, creates a low charge
  7. Radio/Light Combination, powered by crank
  8. Dynamite, 4 sticks
  9. Book, Shakespeare's plays
  10. Grenade, White smoke, 2ea
  11. Wine, 1 bottle
  12. Shield, police grade riot gear
  13. Crowbar, steel
  14. The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks
  15. Jar of zombie guts, 1 jar, smells terrible but can mask position
  16. Whistle
I hope this gives a decent set of gear that one might find that could be useful in a modern zombie apocalypse style game.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Tammany Hall

Tammany Hall, the village hall is found near the center of the village. It is a sturdy two level building with a larger second floor that hangs over the lower level. As this building is located centrally in the village on most days it serves as a market and meeting place and will often be found with numerous merchants selling their wares.

The lower level  consists of two areas, the larger forming a covered but still outdoors area. This serves the people in times when the weather is foul but the market must continue to function. Two sets of large but loosely fitted doors sit on opposite walls and allow for large carts and animals to be brought into the inner market. A wood door leads to the single large room which often serves as the meeting room and feasting hall during holiday. On occasion it has served a a trial room as well.

The second level contains a small store room and a few rooms that serve as offices for the village officials. The mayor holds office in the largest while the smallest room serve as the village tax collector. The middle room is set up as an official visitor's room with a small bed and desk, though this is rarely used by anyone other than the village tax collector, a man by the name of Milbert Vangerghast.

The large open area in the middle of the second floor contains chairs and small tables that can be placed together to form a small meeting area.


Persons who might be found here:
Mayor Percival McNighters is a hard working and studious man. Due to his long tenure as the mayor he has led a rather sedentary life mostly behind a desk and he weight gives him a struggle to climb the ladder to his office. He has a good heart and only wants the best for his village and most people recognize this and are friendly with him. Most times he can be found at hiss desk or out on one of the balconies enjoying the weather and observing 'his' town.

Milbert Vangerghast is a small and weaselly man with a bald head and small wire-rimmed glasses. His eyes dart around as if he were a trapped rat on watch for a potential attack. He often can be seen biting his lower lip and appearing to be in deep thought. As a tax collector for the local lord he is not an especially well-liked person in town and will rarely be found about town without at least one guard from the garrison. The taxes he collects are not especially large but he is prompt and precise in their collection and record keeping. This pleases the local lord and thus the village is rarely visited.



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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Sereth's Cellar

Sereth runs a small inn in the village, it is a favorite among the locals and you have been there a few times. Sereth knows you are an adventurer and he comes to you one evening with an interesting tale. It seems his cellar floor has recently fallen through. So far, nothing vile and terrible has crawled up from the depths, but Sereth is not one to take chances. For a sizable amount of money and a good portion of any treasure found, he would like you to explore what lies beneath and remove any possible threats to his establishment.

In the cellar a large hole has opened beneath the small round "cold" room Sereth used to store perishables. No one has entered the chamber below the cold room but the sound of flowing water can be heard faintly, coming from somewhere far below.

Sereth has unknowingly stumbled upon the ancient ruins (or fully active if the GM so wishes) of a little known dwarven passion: the gladiatorial arena! A long dead dwarven king had the arena built to entertain himself and his friends. Typically they would travel by small watercraft from somewhere upstream and  dock at the small bay. Their are rooms for banquets and relaxing as well as the gaol where the creatures used in the arena were kept. A balcony overlooks the arena where the King and friends could observe the battles waging below. The small complex of rooms near the balcony would serve as visiting chambers, sleeping rooms, and even a small study the King's chief mystic would study the slain creatures' bodies to look foretelling the future.

Though the King and those who served him are long gone there are still things that haunt the shadowed corners of the arena complex:

  • Numerous ghosts of creatures and men slain in the arena haunt the actual arena floor. GMs should flood this area with dozens of strange and unique ghosts. Perhaps some can hurt the players and some unable to touch the physical world.
  • The balcony area is haunted by one of the King's rivals. He had the dwarven prince slain as he watched gladiators fight below. The ghost of the Prince has gone insane watching the ghost of the arena fight for a millennia 
  • A handful of bugbears have moved into one of the rooms near the docking bay. Survivors of a vicious attack on their home, these bugbears are desperate and aggressive. If cornered they will fight to the death with everything they have.
  • A young Otyugh has taken up residence n one of the northern rooms. It prowls the ledge along the underwater stream, cleaning the path of waste and debris. An astute observer might notice the strange cleanliness of the ledge when they first come across it. This Otyugh is not especially violent and will be willing to work with the players in exchange for friendship and food.
  • A very young Aboleth has discovered the water of the bay area and recently moved in. A day ago it enslaved one of the bugbears and is having him collect food for the young Aboleth ot feast upon.

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Friday, October 10, 2014

The Garrison

A quick side note- I have had this map drawn now for probably a few weeks and have been itching to share it with all of you. I had ideas about the place but nothing etched in stone until this last weekend when I sat down to work on the text below. I really think it turned out great and hope you enjoy it.

The town is sufficient to house, and require the services of, a small garrison. The building is rather unique in the fact that in its construction that took a different approach. Funds were low and the local lord refused to support the construction of a large stone structure. Calling upon the many retired adventurers they devised an interesting plan: A smaller stone structure on the lower level was surrounded by sturdy, thick pillars of hard wood. Within this smaller stone structure is a circular stair leading to the second level. Behind the stone structure lies two room created by wooden fencing. These are additional storage space for the garrison and hardy contain items such as firewood, spears, shields, horseshoes, and other various items the garrison might use. There is not likely to be something of such value that a person might risk breaking in unless they were very desperate.

While made of wood, this second level has sides and a roof sheathed in tin, providing excellent protection against fires and projectiles. Certainly not as sturdy as a full stone building, this building has proven to be formidable for defense and thus far, impregnable. The second story is full of offices, storage and some tight quarters for the small number of soldiers that call this home. Securely safe in the second level, the soldiers can easily rain terror on any force attempting to assault the garrison. The one fault in the design is that the building is drafty and no fireplace was incorporated into the design.

At any moment there will be 2d6 soldiers on duty in and around the building, often either heading or returning from, a patrol of the surrounding countryside. If there are more than four soldiers present, roll on the table below to which personality is also on duty.

Who is on duty today? (roll 2d6)
2-5   Private Nataker - The private is a recent addition to the garrison roster and he is having second thoughts on his decision. He envisioned grand adventures, patrols deep into the forest, and daring missions to save damsels. So far he has cleaned the toilets, cleaned up the slop, swept and mopped the floors. As he is from the area he can provide rumors and information on the surrounding area. If offered a chance to leave the garrison (be it on a mission or even to desert he will likely jump at the chance).

6-8   Corporal Braggert - The Corporal is on duty most days and be found making the rounds, checking out the windows for anything approaching the village. He is serious about his chosen profession and goes about his duties in a determined manner. He is dedicated, determined and will do his best to follow orders to the T, especially if they were given by Sergeant Corwellia, for whom he has feelings. Though he is unaware, the sword he wears at his side, is magical and provides a bonus to attack all creatures of an evil nature. The blade was a gift from his father who was known in the area as a brave and honorable soldier how fought in defense of the town during its early days.

9-10 Sergeant Corwellia - The sergeant is an oddity among the garrison, a bit of a tomboy, she joined the garrison after her younger brother was slain by bandits. Ignoring the pleads of her parents, she has served with exemplary heroics and risen in the ranks to her present assignment as the second in charge at the garrison. Sergeant Kendall does not approve of her and will make any attempt to degrade her position or stain her good name if he is able. Corwellia is a tough, strong-willed and confident sergeant and the garrison would do well to have her as the leader. 

11    Sergeant Kendall - A poor leader, and if not for his relations, he would surely have been relieved. He is an unhappy man and rarely have anything worthwhile or complimentary to say to those around him. This does not count his cousin, to whom he will grovel and do his best to please every moment during his infrequent visits. He skims resources and gold off the garrison's accounts and his larder is always full while the troops suffer with half full plates. He dislikes visitors to the village and absolutely does not trust any adventurer who wanders into town. When his cousin is away he serves as the second in command of the village, this causes a generally unhappy and gloomy atmosphere to settle upon the village.

12    Sheriff Holblindan - On rare occasions one might find the local sheriff in town, though while he here he will refuse to stay at the garrison, preferring to stay at a cozy local inn. In his late forties, he will frequently complain about the draftiness of the building and how Sergeant Kendall should look into having that fixed before he returns. The sheriff is is a bit of a pompous ass who believes he is due much greater than he has earned and will demand respect from the characters, even though he has done little to deserve any. His distant cousin, Sergeant Kendall, will do all he can to please the sheriff, though his groveling will have little effect to this end.



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