Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Wandering Titans (Monster as a Hex/Weather)

I trust you see where I am going with this.


In addition to the normal features of a hex, the presence of one of these Titans adds some sort of environmental effect and additional things to encounter to the hex it's in. 

The Titan should move about the map, but not nearly as quickly as PCs. It's a mountainous lumbering beast. Untested suggestion: Number the 6 hex directions. Once per day, roll 2d6, move the titan in that direction if you roll doubles.

Combat stats aren't given to the Titans for the same reason that combat stats aren't given to a hurricane. 

Some Example Beasties

Flood Serpent

Flood by Sandara

On the horizon 
(visible in neighboring hexes)
: Towering Rainclouds. Clouds being unnaturally pulled in.

Environmental Effect 
:  Torrential downpours. Banks overflowing. Ankle-deep water even where you might not expect. Poor visibility. Need sheltered high ground to rest.

: A raging river, rising into the air, and then flowing wherever it pleases.

Behavior / Desires
: Capricious. Sometimes languidly arcs through the sky. Sometimes rapidly tears apart towns with sadistic glee.

Things to Discover or Encounter Nearby

  • Bountiful fauna. Animals flee the floods, but mysteriously more than could possibly live in these areas.
  • Strange fauna. Creatures subtly wrong in form. Alien mutations. When killed, their bones perpetually leak water.
  • Landlocked Pirates. Special boats that allow them to sail along in the wake of the serpent's storms, pillaging evacuated villages. 
  • Her sociable children. In calmer waters within the serpent's hex, you can find strange smaller serpents assigning quests and  promising various wet boons. Personally, I wouldn't trust the things. But if you think stealing a dozen cats in exchange for a sword that gives the wielder extra blood sounds like a good time, that's your prerogative. 
Lucas Roussel


Penumbral Hound

by Muroid

On the horizon 
(visible in neighboring hexes)
: Dimmed sky. Sun sets early if the titan is to the west, and rises late if the titan is to the east.

Environmental Effect 
:  Darkness. Like night during the day. The sun and moon appear constantly eclipsed. Light from large fires just doesn't seem to carry as far. Need held light sources to navigate. 

: The stars blacked out by an indistinct silhouette. Two bright eyes like rival moons. An occasional glint of giant teeth.

Behavior / Desires
: Slowly and carefully plod across the forest. It wants to be left alone. It wants to contemplate the stars. It wants to sleep.

Things to Discover or Encounter Nearby

  • The cult of Mother's Shadow. Blindfolded titan-worshippers, skilled in echolocation. Core dogma is that none who see the Hound's face should live to speak of it. 
  • Wizard vision. Spend enough consecutive time near this beast and you'll begin see the unseen. Permanent if you spend at least a full consecutive lunar cycle in the Hound's hex, or a week there without sleep.
  • Shadow pits. Places of deep shadow (small pits, crevices, overhangs) become physically deeper within the Hound's domain. Sometimes open to inhospitable worlds.
  • Snarls of titan fur, tangled in tree-tops. Can be woven into coarse, scratchy, uncomfortable cloaks which  cling to shadow and help hide the wearer.

The Swine Which Seeks to Unite the Earth and Sky

MtG card art by G-Host Lee

On the horizon 
(visible in neighboring hexes)
: Clouds of dust, floating rocks seen in the distance. Occasional tremors as floating chunks of stone leave the area of the beast's influence and come crashing to the ground.

Environmental Effect 
:  The earth reaches towards to sky. Trees grow upwards at visible rates. You feel lighter on your feet and can lift more weight. Random updrafts and downdrafts. Whole chunks of land lift up into floating islands.  No fall damage. Bulky items easier to hold in inventory.

: Thick vegetation spiraling upwards into the air, carrying masses of debris with it. Pieces flake off and float into the sky. The entire tangled grove always looks at least vaguely like a giant boar.

Behavior / Desires
: Uproots earthen structures and hurls them into the air. Carefully avoids damaging obelisks and towers. Bows in deference to particularly impressive spires and mountains.

Things to Discover or Encounter Nearby

  • Foreign Isles. Some of the large floating chunks of rock have been drifting along behind the Swine for decades, and are host to strange endemic species.
  • Skywood. Plants which have passed through the Swine's body become buoyant in air and desirable for building flying ships. Incredibly difficult to collect in large quantity without getting crushed.
  • Vanguard Birds. A society of birdmen worship the beast, and zealously attack anyone who comes near (that can't fly). Easy to bribe with shiny objects.

More Titans:

Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

Thursday, March 25, 2021

A handful of random tables about magical whatzits

d6x6 Random Mundane Materials

1 2 3 4 5 6
1 Dirt Tin Stone Ethanol Chitin Hair
2 Silk Copper Sand Soap Rope Skin
3 Water Silver Diamond Nacre Pykrete Bone
4 Grass Gold Glass Grease Graphite Giblets
5 Shellac Iron Rust Treacle Cement Blood
6 Mold Lead Mud Honey Rubber Meat

d20 Random Magical Materials with Impossible Properties

  1. Dirt
  2. Skywood: Dense, hard wood which resists the pull of gravity. Grows as trees which float through the air, carrying along clumps of earth tangled in their roots. Wicker panels of the stuff are used to craft flying ships.
  3. Adamant Glass: Cloudy gray glass, impossible to sully or scratch. Impervious and impenetrable to all forms of chemical or magic, meaning it can be used to entrap ghosts, spells, and other spirits. Really easy to melt, though, and can shatter violently.
  4. Vermillion Ichor: Like red-tinged quicksilver. Constantly jitters in place. Imbues anything it’s placed into with elan vital, compelling it into motion and imbuing it with will.
  5. Magnets
  6. Shimmersilk: Lightweight fluttering cloth of indeterminate form. Appearance changes based on the viewers’ expecations
  7. Alkahest: Universal perfect solvent, seperates things into their constituent components without otherwise damaging or changing them.
  8. Tomberstone: Stone which hates the heavens. Dark violet with streaks of iridescent yellow. When directly under an open sky, it pushes downwards with immense force. When covered, behaves like normal stone.
  9. Chornolyst: Magical kudzu. Thick sticky pitch-black sheets which grow rapidly over surfaces in the presence of mana and bright light. Rapidly dies and rots in their absence. Tough but flexible. Highly flammable. Technically edible.
  10. True Vitriol: Green-Red crystal with a greasy lustre. Eternally burns with an unquenchable putrid flame. Powerful heat, but irritating headache-causing flickering light.
  11. Ectoplasm: A versatile stringy substance that can be regurgitated by skilled experts. A sort of physical manifestation of the soul which responds to the emitter’s will. Is capable of fine manipulation and interaction with a wide variety of magical phenomena. The main drawback is that any damage to the substance has drastic psychic health consequences for the person who squeezed it out.
  12. Philosopher’s stone: Turns mercury into silver on contact, lead into gold, reverses aging, frags trolls, etc.
  13. Slarmbe: Insulates from time. Kind of a salty amber-tinted jelly. Kind of just a zone of shimmering air. Kind of makes you go cross-eyed to look at it. The thicker it covers an object, the more slowly that thing advances through time. Can be arduously moved by prodding it with a long stick.
  14. Solidified Nimbus: Like the cartoon version of a cloud. Soft and moldable. Cold to the touch. Drips water out of the bottom when squeezed. Accumulates static electricity.
  15. Null: Absorbs energy practically without bound. Unworkable and immovable in its pure form. Can be dissolved and alloyed to produce immovable rods and similar wonders.
  16. Impressionable Flesh: Raw animal matter in its most magically pure state. Often mistaken for a species of pale grey ooze. Assimilates small bits of detritus and small clumps of organic matter. When it comes into contact with a larger body of living flesh, it merges into and assumes the form of that flesh. Potent for healing, and can even restore lost limbs. Contraindicated for head and spinal injuries, under penalty of execution.
  17. Demoncore: Densely malevolent metal, brimming with alchemical power. Capable of poisoning those who merely stand near it, or providing a near limitless source of arcane energy.
  18. Voidmetal: Sticks to shadows and vice versa
  19. Pureglass: Perfectly invisible stone.
  20. Song-glass: Frost that dissolves into radio static whispers divine secrets.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Universal Magical Object Classification Guide

After witnessing an argument about the difference between artefacts and regular magical items, I've devised a foolproof and universal classification system:

I hope that this answers all of your questions.