Roll 1d12 for your doom.
Monday, 10 March 2014
Saturday, 8 March 2014
The druid's city has tended gardens and green spaces. Parks and groves appear amid buildings. Trees are a regular feature. Wonders like the Hanging Gardens of Babylon are possible without aquaducts using create water. Pigeons may roost in building eaves. Bats haunt high towers. Cities may also use caves like Derinyuku or Nottingham. The rich and powerful in druidic cities prosper. They are rewarded for careful stewardship of nature's bounty and given just punishment when they over-reach. Yet the druid is aloof from courtly antics sometimes working in secret or watching in animal form. Yet when the spotlight is required, druids take it with considerable force and almost no mercy. Druids may cultivate links with horse-riders. They often have money and some rudimentary understanding of how to live and work with animals.
Druidic diplomacy is an interesting field. Animals and plants can spy for a druid. Here the wild shape ability comes into it's own. Scrying is an available option. The secret druidic language is another aspect, here rogues, magic or another druid are your only defence. Druidic ties to elementals and fey provide additional options. The vengeful druid burning civilisation is a cliche. Druids are more surgical in it's use. Druids also use contagion to thin over-populated areas. Bizarre animal attacks without reason may lead to stories rivalling the Rue Morgue or The Beast of Gevaudan. Summon Nature's Ally may mean you wake up to more than a horse's head in the morning.
Even if such high-profile risks are not for you, the druid may have a profession with options. Brewer, cook, gardener, farmer, fisherman, herbalist, midwife, shepherd, stable master and trapper are obvious choices for the druid. A professional druid is never poor. Their trade is useful camouflage in the city. Even the impoverished druid has advantages most beggars do not if they find time to rest. Here poverty provides a different camouflage. A beggar's court of druids is intriguing.
The following may feature in cities tended by a druid.
- Agriculture is a very good reason for druids to walk a city's gardens. Spells like create water, charm animal, guidance, plant growth, repel vermin and baleful polymorph make life simpler. Animals are well-kept of course and of course, awakened plants.
- Construction will allow for trees and parks (which druids treat as groves). Gardens and communal fruit trees will be encouraged. Eaves and spires for birds will be encouraged. Spells like soften earth and stone, wood shape, stone shape and transmute mud to rock are useful. Buildings may be enhanced by hallow or other spells.
- Festivals are popular, goodberries and create water provide simple fare aided by brewing. Those who've seen the original The Wicker Man may have their own take on this.
- Druids with item creation feats may build stockpiles of useful magic. While goodberries are seasonal, druids may follow the squirrel's example.
- Infant and mother mortality are much diminished. A natural midwife class, spells like cure wounds, remove disease, stabilise, goodberry and restoration help to heal childbirth trauma. Druids may have reasons for helping of course.
- Ports may be grateful for druids with spells like control winds, control water or gust of wind. Even a light spell may matter on stormy nights at sea.
- Summon Nature's Ally makes the druid a formidable foe. Apart from potential for agriculture (aurochs, dog, horse and pony), there are other options. Morally flexible druids need never be short of poisons either.
Thursday, 6 March 2014
- Bed of hot embers used for firewalking and post-firewalk barbecue. Trial by firewalking used by nearby humanoids to determine innocence. Last meal of condemned takes on whole new meaning.
- Cooking fire for cauldron of mystery stew. 1 in 6 chance cauldron is occupied by something that would prefer being the eater. 1 in 6 chance of hand or conspicuous body part floating to surface.
- Divinatory fire used by oracles in diverse ways to predict fate or fortune. 1 in 6 chance an oracle will be available to offer advice on a course of action. This is totally accurate 70% of the time.
- Funeral pyre for 1d4 Medium-sized corpses; burning quite lively, difficult to distinguish species due to smoke and charred flesh. 1 in 6 chance some grave goods survive the flames.
- Furnace used to smelt iron. A bloomery with chimney stack and animated bellows. Can create up to 30lbs of iron in a day. About a week's charcoal and two sledge hammers are stored nearby.
- Masonry stove used to heat room and bake. Uses wood or coal. 1 in 6 chance it is magical.
Magical stoves can talk and will create 1d6 loaves of rye bread if lit and tended by anyone willing to talk for 6d6 minutes.
- Open-hearth forge for creating arms, armour and even ironwork. Forge is ready-lit, tended by twin dwarves. Magic is not welcome here without hefty bribes.
- Punishment for 1d4+2 criminals of heinous crime versus faith and local ruler. Stakes and pyres are already burning. 1% chance a criminal survives, smell doubles chance of wandering monsters.
- Purifying fire being jumped over by 2d4+2 humanoids; taking turns to goad each other into jumping over the fire in order to purge themselves of spiritual taint. Sinful items are fuelling the flames.
- Refining fire kindled to burn off alchemical dross; fumes cause nausea if inhaled (Fortitude DC12, nauseated for 2d6 rounds). 1 in 6 chance of 1d6 gold nuggets (worth 50gp each), still red hot.
- Sacrificial fire for 1d3 Medium-sized creatures fully aflame. Offerings are already dead but anointed bodies burn excellently in any event. Extinguishing will incur divine wrath from nearby clerics.
- Self-immolating fanatic makes supreme sacrifice to immolate tyrant. Direct contact does 4d6 fire damage; anyone in 5' risks 1d6 damage. 1 in 6 chance that tyrant's bodyguards notice in time.
Wednesday, 5 March 2014
Then I decided this may be a shade ironic given this was about making megadungeons manageable.
So I thought... mindmap? Plus I had to give XMind 2013 a spin.
This reminded me just how much good stuff is out in the blogosphere. So for your viewing pleasure...
Mindmap: Manageable Megadungeon (PDF).
Or if you prefer, XMind 2013.
There are numerous lists out there (some included) but keeping track of it all is a challenge. For those less able to speed-read, this may be some help. Please provide feedback in the usual location!
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