Monday, December 20, 2021

Shady Contracts from "The Company"

Sometimes you need contracts from shady groups. This can generate the general bits and you can fill in the specifics.  Roll 5d6. Put it all together!

 1d6  Type Window XP Intel Known Complication
1 Assassinate Immediate 0 Almost Nothing Open Contract
2 Acquire 1d6 Days 5%Weak / Inaccurate Leaked Contract
3 Diplomatic 1d4 Weeks 10% General  Extremely Dangerous Foe 
4 Gather Intel  1d6 Months 15%Some Details Demonic Involvement
5  Sew Discord  1 Year 20% Detailed Dossier Potential Suicide Mission
6 Set Up  Until Complete  25%  Secret Information  No Complications

Type: What kind of job is this?
Window: How long do you have to complete this task?
XP: originally this is the % of XP needed to go to the next level or, if the mission fails, the penalty to XP. Replace this with another kind of reward, like % of income to advance one social class.
Intel: How much information do you have?
Known Complication: Not the only complication, just one you know about.

Clearly I've got some idea of a setting that these bits work with - you can get a feel from the examples below. Replace Daemonic Involvement with something like "troll army" and you'll change the entire tone of things. 

EXAMPLE I: 4, 3, 4, 6, 5

  • Type: Gather Intel
  • Window: 2 weeks (I rolled 2 on the d4)
  • XP: 15%
  • Intel: Secret Information
  • Complication: Potential Suicide Mission
You have 2 weeks to identify when a shipment of lotushead will arrive and where in Holland they will be arriving.. The secret you know is that this is for the Vigilant Society, known diabolists. You also know that these folks don't take kindly and will kill you and everyone you know to keep their secret. 

EXAMPLE II: 6, 4, 3, 2, 6

  • Type: Set Up
  • Window: 1 month (1 on the d6)
  • XP: 10%
  • Intel: Weak or Inaccurate
  • Complication: no known complication
The company needs you to ensure that Troegr Mastiff and found guilty of the murder of his mistress. You have 1 month to complete this mission before he is elected to the Mercantile Guild. There is no information on his mistress but she exists (according to his wife). The murder charge and public shame of infidelity will ensure he is not voted in.

EXAMPLE III: 2, 5, 3, 1, 4

  • Type: Acquire
  • Window: 1 year
  • XP: 10%
  • Intel: Almost Nothing
  • Complication: Daemonic Involvement
The company needs you to acquire, through whatever methods you see fit, the reliquary of St. Brigit. It was stolen some 30 years ago but rumor indicates it is in Paris (or possibly London). This information was gathered from captured members of the Inverted Church when a daemonic summoning ritual was interrupted. 



Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Herbalism Ingredients

The big table of herbalism ingredients, based on terrain type. Roll 1d100. 

Roll 1d100 and see what you find based on the terrain type. What is this stuff and what does it do? I don't know - it is just a big table to play around with.

Ingredients FOREST  PLAINS  SWAMP  MOUNTAINS  JUNGLE 
Albro Spine1---1---1 - 8
Ambrosia---1---------
Armoranth---2 - 9---------
Asgard fennel------2 - 17------
Axehead Mushroom------18 - 19------
Bilemoss---10---1 - 16---
Black Truffle211---------
Blood Thistle3 - 10------------
Cane Orange------------9 - 16
Caprel Mushroom11 - 18------------
Cats' Tooth------20 - 27------
Celedon Stalk---12 - 1328 - 4317---
Chamomile19 - 34------------
Chickweed---14 - 29---------
Cinnamon35---------17 - 20
Coffee------------21 - 24
Croneweed------44 - 4518 - 19---
Crowthistle36 - 51------------
Culling Violet---------20 - 35---
Dog Thistle---30 - 3146------
Dragonheart---32------25
Dreni pod---33 - 3447 - 4836---
Dugberry---------37 - 44---
Fibrous Mushroom------------26 - 33
Fine Dren Mushroom---------45 - 48---
Flatland Carrot---35 - 38---------
Giant Ant Fewmets---39 - 54---------
Glass Orchid------49 - 52------
Goatspice---------4934
Ground Peach---55---------
Hard Lime------------35 - 36
Hel Leaf---------50---
Honey52 - 67------------
Horsetail Grass------53 - 68---37 - 38
Iron Bamboo------------39 - 54
Leadgill Mushroom------6951 - 52---
Lover's Lips---56---------
Mauveberry------70 - 73------
Milky wheat---57 - 58---------
Mud Pepper------74 - 75------
Mulletberry------76 - 83---55 - 56
Nightshade68 - 71------------
Noosevine---------53 - 54---
Orachia------84 - 87------
Orange Saffron---------55 - 70---
Pedra Nut------8871 - 78---
Radiant Fern------89 - 96------
 Razorfrill Mushroom 72 - 73---------57
Red Bird Fruit------------58
Rosemarry---------79 - 82---
Rotted Durian------------59 - 74
Rumble Moss---------83 - 84---
Shenroot------------75 - 76
Singing Sister---------85 - 88---
Speckled Honey74 - 77------------
Spider Radish78 - 85------89 - 9077
Spotted Pumpkin---59 - 62---------
Stormberry86------91---
Sunroot87 - 8863 - 78---------
Tallcap mushroom---79 - 86---------
Tarantula Radish89 - 90------------
Tegberry Cluster------------78 - 79
tell root------------80 - 95
Tiger root9187 - 8897 - 98------
Vanilla------------96 - 99
Violet Fern92------------
Wapatoro------99------
Water Pepper93 - 94---------100
Weeping Rose---89 - 92---------
Whedelcorn---93 - 100---------
White Acorn95 - 96------------
White Truffle97 - 100------------
Witch Apple------100------
Yawning Trumpet---------92 - 99---
Ymir's Teardrop---------100---


Hexy Goodness
Roll 1d12. On a 1-6, use the terrain type of an adjacent hex (1 north, 2 northeast, 3 southeast, 4 south, 5 southwest, 6 northwest), but on a 7-12 use the terrain of the hex you are on. If in a hex with multiple terrain types, like wooded mountains, 50/50 of either base type.


Rarity Table
Because the same data presented differently is fun. Maybe this is what is at the herbalist shop?  I dunno.

 1d20 CommonUncommonRareVery Rare
1HoneyBlood ThistleWhite Trufflelover's lips
2ChamomileCaprel MushroomSpeckled Honeywapatoro
3CrowthistleArmoranthFlatland carrotwitch apple
4ChickweedTallcap mushroomspotted pumpkinhel leaf
5 Giant ant fewmets WhedelcornWeeping roseymir's teardrop
6Asgard fennelradiant fernorachiared bird fruit
7orange saffroncats' toothglass orchidTarantula Radish
8culling violetyawning trumpetmauveberryWhite Acorn
9iron bamboodugberrycroneweedStormberry
10rotted duriancane orangerosemarryBlack Truffle
11tell rootfibrous mushroomsinging sisterMilky wheat
12bilemosspedra nut fine dren mushroom mud pepper
13Sunrootmulberryvanilla axehead mushroom 
14horsetail grassalbro spinecoffeerumble moss
15Celedon stalkSpider RadishTiger rootnoosevine
16--- Razorfrill Mushroom Dreni podgoatspice
17---dog thistlecinnamonhard lime
18---leadgill mushroomViolet Ferntegberry cluster
19---water pepperambrosiaShenroot
20---Nightshadeground peachdragonheart

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

#DICEMBER 2021, Part I

 Trying my hand at some #Dicetember 2021 tables. d6 tables - easy peasy.

1: Ammo - What is up with this magical ammo?

  1. Glowing: these arrows glow like a magnesium flare when shot off and for another d6 turns after they hit.
  2. Chaotic: 50% chance it hits a random target within 20' of the original target, but damage is always maximum.
  3. Splintering: The arrow splinters - each point of damage hits a different random target within 10' of the original target (including the original target).
  4. Multiplying: Each morning there are 1d6 more arrows than the night before, up the maximum quiver size of 20. In BXDH/Sorrow terms, the die type will increase.
  5. Piercing: After hitting the first target, a second target behind the first is also hit (roll for it) and the damage is half of the first damage rolled.
  6. Screaming: These make a god-awful racket when fired - targets struck must make a Fear Save (or spells if that is your thing) or run off, also screaming, for 1d6 rounds.

2: Ice - How thick is this ice I'm standing on?

  1. Paper-thin: Dex Check/Save vs. Wands to jump out of the way or fall through!
  2. Window Pane: Move slowly and spread your weight ... or else ...
  3. Beefy: Thick enough for some ice fishing (if you have an auger)
  4. Solid: It is freakishly clear and as thick as the story of a building
  5. Glacial: It is a glacier ... likely has a lot of ice caves, caves of monsters.
  6. Planar: You stand upon the precipice of the elemental plane of ice, it isn't infinite, right?
3: Child - What are they hiding behind their back?

  1. A bunny: 1 in 4 it is dead, otherwise 50/50 it is a happy pet or feral beastie
  2. A knife: dripping with fresh blood!  what did they do ... or do they plan to do?
  3. A grubby doll: looks disturbingly like one of the PCs (of course)
  4. A bag of marbles: normal, unless they throw them on the ground then run away when their older angry sibling wanders in with a club
  5. A deck of cards: want to play a game? No? How about a trick then?
  6. A severed head: an old one, eyes and mouth sewn up, borrowed from their grandmama

4: Rage - how does it manifest itself?
  1. Screaming, yelling, and a general carrying on
  2. Silent seething and withering glares
  3. Passive aggressive action and microagressions
  4. Uncontrollable, destructive violence
  5. Complete and total vengeance, even if it takes years
  6. Double down and don't give up, even if you are obviously screwed/wrong
5: Blade - what is the freaky shape is this sword?
  1. Oversized crescent moon
  2. Grasping withered claw
  3. A circle within a circle
  4. Dozens of overlapping scales 
  5. Silhouette of a sexy warrior
  6. A twisted spiral with some very sharp dangly bits
6: Shame - what is the dark secret they are hiding
  1. Murdered someone close and feels terrible guilty about not being caught
  2. Lied about their prowess and skill, this caused their family to fall apart
  3. They grew up poor/rich and have been lying about too long to come clean
  4. Ate the last piece of cake at the wedding, making the groom cry
  5. Blamed their sibling for a vile act which they committed
  6. Worked for a foul organization for far too long, did terrible things
7: Deamon - what does it want from you
  1. Just little memory - one you won't miss. See? You don't even remember what is lost.
  2. One small cup, brimming with the tears of children 
  3. A saucer of milk from a goat belonging to a farmer that does NOT like you
  4. Three hairs from the braid of Princess Alora (whoever that is)
  5. A pickle. and make it a good one. nice and crunchy. better be plenty dill, too.
  6. Just stay inside your room tonight. No matter what you hear. Shhhh ... take a little nap


Wednesday, December 1, 2021

More on Dungeon Jerks!

Are They Organized?

Roll 1d6, +1 if a leader is present.

  1. Not At All - they are likely slacking off and are surprised 3 in 6. They have no tactics and are uncoordinated in a fight.
  2. Sort Of - Each member acts by themselves without much coordination; individual morale checks (which can cause a cascade of fleeing).
  3. Barely - initial contact is coordinated (volley of arrows for example), but after that it is a free-for-all.
  4. The Usual - they are a group that works together, so it is mostly functional. Run like you usually run a group of bandits.
  5. Adept - Until the first morale check is required, they are going to be a dangerous, intelligent, coordinated foe.
  6. Definitely - they are going to ambush the party (surprised 3 in 6), use ranged and melee attacks in coordination (battle line), focus on threats (kill the mage!) and disengage/not fight if they think they can't win. They are dangerous. 

What is their Style?

Roll 1d6 for some style notes.
  1. Wretched Vagabonds wearing rags and covered in filth
  2. Swaggering Bullies that try to intimidate and belittle opponents 
  3. Reluctant Aggressors that really need you to give up that loot
  4. Classy Gents with decent clothes that politely request your loot
  5. Ugly Reavers wearing animal skins that don't talk much if at all 
  6. Polite Noobs that clearly haven't done this before but don't want to be rude

Who Are They?

Roll 1d6 to identify what type of group they are.
  1. Renata's Robbers (Barrowmaze) - up to their usual bullshit
  2. Local Tomb Raiders - you might have seen them around town
  3. Local Mooks - definitely seen them around town
  4. Renegade Hirelings - screwed by adventurers, now out on their own
  5. Roving Tomb Robbers - recently heard about this score 
  6. 'Foregin' Tomb Raiders - where did these guys come from? what language is that?

Why Do This?

Roll 1d6 to check on their motivation
  1. Criminals doing criminal things - the crew looks like easy marks
  2. Frightened  of the dungeon - but they want those sweet treasures
  3. Need Cash Now and JG Wentworth is not in business - they are desperate
  4. Misguided fools that think they are doing the right thing - somehow?
  5. Thrill Seekers that want to start some shit - just to see where it goes
  6. Deathwish Nihilists that don't expect to live - but live to cause trouble




Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Dungeon-Claim Jumping Jerks

For dungeon entrances that are known and active, there is a chance that some assholes set up a "taxation" station. They basically steal stuff from the party - on the way in, on the way out, etc.

Known Entrance

An entrance is considered known if the party has gone in or come out that way at least once and the dungeon is known to be still active. Folks have to know there is some benefit to setting up. If the entrance is in the middle of nowhere or it doesn't make sense, don't use this. I've been using this in my Barrowmaze game.

Are they Here?

Roll 1d6 and add the "Confidence" modifier. if the total is 6 or more, they are here. They aren't always here, but the more Confidence they have the more likely they are to be around.
  • Confidence starts at 0.
  • Once they set up (the first time they show up, +1 to Confidence
  • Each time they get some good loot from a party, +1 to Confidence
  • Each time they get attacked and lose, -1 to Confidence
If the mod ever hits -1, they fuck off for a while. After a session or two, reset Confidence to 0 and start rolling again.

How Many?

The number appearing is 2d4+half (round up) the total on the d6 roll. So if the "are they here" roll was a total of 7, 2d4+4 of these jerks are around. 

Also, check for a leader type. Roll 1d20. If that is equal to or less than the number appearing, there is also a leader hanging out with their claim-jumping besties.

Claim Jumping "Tax" Jerks
HD:1 AC:8 (leather)       Morale: +9 (or 6 if using 2d6)
50% have short sword and wooden kite shield (-1AC)
50% have bow and 2 daggers
1 in 4 have a better weapon (dagger to short sword, short sword to long sword)
1 in 6 have a better shield (none to wooden kite, wooden kite to metal kite)
1 in 8 have a stat bonus (1-2:+1STR, 3-4:+1DEX, 5-6:+1CON)
Loot on hand: 2d4 copper groats (in a silver-based system)

Claim Jumping Leader Type
HD:3 AC:5 (chain+shield)       Morale: +12 (or 8 if using 2d6)
Always a spear and metal kite shield (spears are cool)
+1 to hit and damage from being a tough guy
1 in 4 have a healing potion
1 in 6 have a major healing potion
1 in 8 have another potion (1-2:gaseous form, 3-4:heroism, 5-6:invisibility)
Loot on hand: 2d10 silver crowns

What Do They Want?

Heading in? They might charge 1 or 2 silver, but that is negotiable. They are more interested in making to loot folks who are beaten down and leaving the dungeon with loot. Heck, they might even hide, then set up once the adventurers are in the hole.

On the way out? As much as they can get. They (think they) have the upper hand and will negotiate hard. In the end, a failed morale check will cause them to make poor choices and demand too much. I'll leave this up to the GM. You know your players and how hard you want to push them.

Total Number of Bandits - Will They Ever Stop?

An infinite amount. There is always some asshat who wants to steal from folks. They never stop. The only way to get them to stop is to set up your own (the PCs I mean - these guys are yours) camp around the entrance with henchmen or hirelings or whatever. Fun!

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Some Alignment Weapons

Average Spear

Lawful and chaotic characters Save vs Magic or take 1d6 damage when picking this up. Even if they save, they are at disadvantage to use it but it otherwise works as a normal spear.

In the hands of a Neutral character, the spear come alive. It acts as a +2 weapon ... but with some complications. Critical hits and fumbles are ignored - every attack is an average hit or miss. Damage is always 5 (dice are not rolled, average of 3+2) plus STR and any other modifier. Healing (recovery or magic) always heals an average amount. Once per day the wielder can declare any die roll to be average BEFORE it is rolled.

These might suck. Just wanted to throw out a few ideas this morning.

Glaive of Law

Neutral characters simply can't touch the weapon, Chaotic characters that touch it Save vs Paralysis or are paralyzed for 1d6 Turns. 

Lawful characters carrying the glaive (pole-arm +1,+3 vs Chaotic foes) must always speak the truth, are unable to perform illegal or morally suspect acts, and may, 1/day, Command a group (total HD up to 1d4 per character level) and the command will be obeyed (assuming it isn't unlawful).


Chaos Mace

Lawful and Neutral characters see the chaos mace as filthy smear on reality. Lawful characters must Save vs wands or attack the wielder; if the wielder is an ally they can roll with Advantage (or +5 if you aren't into the Advantage thing). 

Damage is randomly determined each time the weapon hits (1d6)

  1. 1d4 to the wielder
  2. 0 damage
  3. 1d4 to the target
  4. 1d6 to the target
  5. 1d8 to the target
  6. 1d10 to the target

Against lawful targets the damage is +1d4. Once per week the wielder makes a Save vs Wands or they get a random mutation (which might be super awesome or crazy terrible).

Monday, November 8, 2021

4 games, 1 campaign ... and the other campaign

I'm running my BXDH game as a living campaign. I have 2 online groups, 1 (soon to be) in person group, and am trading notes with another Boston-area DM that is also running Barrowmaze.

This is NUTS!

When a group does something, it is done: chambers looted, monsters killed, walls marked up, doors smashed, NPCs irritated (or killed off). And each group KNOWS that other groups are playing in the same game.

The only real issue is one of time. My 2 online weekly groups are moving at whatever pace they like, their actions are not happening at the same time on the same calendar. The in person group is going to be western-marches style, so they'll get up to whatever every 2 weeks. Between that and the other group that is running (weekly?) there is/are a lot of events.

So I just mash them together to let things make sense. I don't track who did what when exactly. Time out of time. I'm sure there are going to be cross-over situations. Group A is in the middle of the barrowmaze and Group B decides to do some serious exploration. They aren't going to encounter Group A camped out, but might find evidence of it. When Group A picks back up they'll fnd that the area beyond those doors was already looted - perhaps long ago? Or maybe there are other ways around this place?

I'm leaving it a mystery to the players and not getting too uptight about it.

I do have a google doc that I'm sharing with the Other DM of stuff that goes on. For example, that group went poking around barrow mound #9. My group had already looted it, but Other DM got that note later, so #9 will be looted when his group checks it out again.

So - has anyone else done this kind of thing? How did it go? Any tricks you developed? 

... And I'm also running the biweekly Sorrow game. I may be in over my head, but it sure is fun.