Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Scrounges, Knockers, Gleaners and the New Year

Tis the season for endings and beginnings. I've had my game stuff knocked out of whack by calamity and a new campaign so UI've fallen behind on my blogging here and over at bigdungeon.  I had hoped to get a lot of time in on BigDungeon on the thanksgiving weekend and we had a 4 day blackout for the holiday, followed by a chimney fire (which really came out as well as such a thing can) so that got offset and i ended up doing more reading on dungeon generation and my Parents got me the 5e DMG for Christmas (just like they got me the first one... uh 35 yrars ago???) and it made me like 5e a heck of a lot more than I did from reading the previews or freebie core PDFs but also sucked up more eof my blogging and getting something on BigDungeon done time. So content on BigDugnoen is bumped yet again into the nebulous future but something is coming, eventually (writing a megadungeon someone else may read or a megadungeon generator that can create quickly editable content is quite the chore).

I'm excited to be playing the new game not this Sunday but next one and that's drawn a lot of my creative energy. It's going to be fairytale land on the surface and fiend folio inspired chaos-hell in the underworld. Still debating specifc ruleset with myself and have 3 in the final run BFRGP, Swords and Wizardy Complete, and Seven Voyages of Zylarthen; funnily enough most of my campaign development work can be done generic enough I can easily get it to work with the game rules when I decide.

Here's some semi-gamebale contet, really mostly an idea for now. I've never really been satisfied with the random/wandering monster entries for "Adventuring Parties" in dungeons, it's just too broad and still leaves you with a ton of work to get rolling. So I figured: why not create a slightly more granaular set of classification of dungeon delvers to make it easier to wing and likely build a larger list for each of those classifications? Here the bones of that set up:

Dungeon Delver Categories.
Scrounges- scavenegrs and skulkers, either escaped prisoners turned dungeon looters or desperate peasants giving a dungeon delving a fling. Best armor is typically leather or shield, if by freak chance a scrounge has leather, shiled and a helmet it's going to be a mismatched and shoddy set of gear. Weapons will be reworked pieces looted from battlefields or more likely rustic tools turned to monster clobbering. These fellows generally lack the ability and durability to present much of threat to an organized foe and typically profit from the leavings of other adventurers. Levels 0 to 2. Armor-leather or none typically. weapons: shoddy and clumsy 1d6 weapons

Knockers- ever present dungeon looters, not the most competent delvers but they still haunt the place and are an annoyance to locals and other delvers. A lone knocker isn't much of a n issue but a number of them could be trouble to a small monster band or more experienced delvers. Level 1 to 4. Armor: up to Mail and Shield. Weapons: typically one hand 1d6 weapons.

Breakers- stereotypical door kicking, trap springing,  monster killing death squads.  Level 1-6. Armor: as much as possible.  Weapons: Typically 2 hand 1d8 heavy on melee.

Gleaners- competent looters that make use of stealth and guile as much as they do force so as to pilfer and transport as much loot out of the dungeon as they can possibly manage. Likely to have base camps or dungeon caches established to further their looting ways.
Levels 2-7. Armor: medium to heavy when applicable but with a focus on mobility.Weapons: good  with a balance of melee and ranged doing 1d6 or 1d8.

ShadowJack- renowned rogues of the deeps. Sources of rumor and specialists for particular tasks. Up and comers but not yet true forces in the megadungeon.
Levels: 3-8 armor: light ot medium but often magic. weapons: typical fine or exotic, maybe even magic typically 1d8.

Carver- empire builders trying to carve themselves an empire in the underworld or aid another in doing so. They will have hideouts, allies, and supplies somewhere in the dungeon. Levels 3-13. Armor: medium often magic.wepaons: veryfine and exotic, typically 1d8 for one handed and 1d10 for 2 handed weapons.

Grim- respected and feared enforcers and monster hunters (yeah I borrowed that name slightly but it works). Gloomy and stalwart dungeon champions. Typically only have one or two pieces of really valuable loot on hand, often a weapon or device of destruction. Levels: 5-13 Armor: heavy. Wepaons: 1d8 one handers and 1d12 two handers.

Wyrd- powerful oddballs of the deeps, you want to meet a strange bloke in a megadungeon it's going to be a Wyrd; Fungus collecting sage who moonlights as an oracle... that's a wyrd as well. Likely to have exotic and valuable gear.
Levels: 6-13 Armor: any, often magic. Weapon: Exotic typically 1d8 but may be heftier.

Stillworking up the distribution by level. Becasue of the random nature of them not totally sure how I'm going to balance 1d6 scrounges vs a ShadowJack but I come up with somehting.

 Definetly going to come up with a list of 100 to 25 of these guys in each category with their respective arms, armor and goodies. That's going to have to wait until sometime in the first few days of 2015. I envision using these entries as reoccurring NPCs when possible so eventually if all goes well characters will get a chance to know the names and habits of folks they kill for a few g.p.


  1. Holmes, you got an asshole stealing your stuff and presenting it as his own. Here's the first one I've found:

    There may be more that I haven't found.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Thanks for the pointer. Some folks have no class. A little, credit, a link back, something original added on...but I suppose stealing is too easy for some folks.