Monday, 2 May 2022

What's up, nerds?

In the last chapter...

I wrote a thread about this on the bird app, but I'll write about it here too.

After a break of Electric Bastionland (itself having had a longer break because we (as in my wife and I) lost our daughter last summer), the group™is returning to the Fantasy Game. Last time we saw them, they had successfully exited the dungeon proper, and was heading towards the nearest City.

What city?

I don't know! I rarely (if ever) plan out cities, but this time we're probably going to stay in the "vicinity", so to speak, and so we'll need a better plan than "just wing it." Don't worry, though; there'll be plenty of winging it. Let's start!

Step the one:

1:

Find a map of a city. This one'll do. We'll probably rename it later.


2:

Buy a copy of Beak, Feather & Bone. Invite your players to play it with you, on the map you just printed. Let the players select any faction they like. What will you get? I don't know!

Beak, Feather & Bone is a very simple game, but in short the mechanic is "draw card, let current player select a location (on the map) and claim it for their faction, what they claim is based on the card", ish. Buy it to find out more, it's not expensive (and it's very good).

3:

Once the game is over, you might have something like this:
Legend:
Yellow: Merchants
Purple: Animal Shelters
Blue: Mages
Green: City Watch
Red: Clerics

1. Toll Gate Inn
"They should tear it down, it's a damn disgrace is what it is!"
A dilapidated building; windows broken and roof is missing several tiles. Mostly a gathering place for the local youths, and rats. Future plans (of the merchant's guild) involves making it into a proper toll house.

2. Farm House
"I don't really know what they do there, it's just... there? Look for the house with grass roof."
Well-kept building; grass on the roof. Rehabilitates and sells animals.

3. Old Tower
"I dunno, I think the head wizard lived there?"
Tall, white tower, a few missing bricks he.re and there. The leader of the Mage's Guild lived there, but it now stands empty, save for the oak furniture that was too heavy to move.

4. City Watch Post
"I guess they keep it clean enough."
Red brick building, regular windows. The City Watch bought this house on auction in order to expand its operations in the city.

Rival: J'han Shard
"Indecisive, weak, pathetic; to imagine that the lineage would end with him."
Worn-out black clothes. Wants to get the building back, it's been in his family for generations.

5. Old Church
"It's sad that it's not used any longer."
Big, stained-glass windows, dark brown/red brick building. Was used by the local clerics before they got their new place; still used for some sermons.

6. Bank
"Way too ostentatious. Look for the building what looks like someone shat out a marble turd with gold accents."
Marble columns, gold accents, statues.
The current bank of the Merchant's Guild. Inside is more marble, arched ceiling, echoes tend to live forever, so it's pretty loud.

7. Farm House
"I've seen it, but I've never bought anything from them."
Regular farm house; sells farm-related groceries. Inside there're just shelves and shelves of stuff.

Rival: James Ahan
"That man was born with a serpent's tongue, I tell ya. Sharp as a knife, aye, but I only trust him as far as I can throw him."
Well-dressed, walking cane, imperial moustache, bowler hat.
He just wants to flip the place for a nice profit. He's got a buyer lined up and all.

8. The old library
"I tend to just ignore it."
Dilapidated wooden building. Inside there's water damage, holes in the floor etc. 

Rival: Mx Acallister
"Mx Acallister is one proud person; keeps their head high but always a kind word for the lesser fortunate."
Old, been around for a long while. They want to tear it down to build a new place of worship.

9. City Watch Curiosities
"I think they sell ... used goods? Like, what equipment they have that's not good enuf for their own? Or if they sell... stuff they've taken from thieves?"
Log house, no windows. Inside rows of tables, shelves. Used by the city watch to sell equipment that's past usability.

10: Soup Kitchen
"When you have to go there, you know you've hit rock bottom. *sniffs* I would never..."
Concrete building, beige/eggshell white, large gate. Inside tables, a few cots, some boxes with second-hand stuff.

Rival: Bengt Urskogsholm
"That self-serving bastard, greedy as few he is."
Fat, with a moustache. He's jealous because when he was a kid there was no soup kitchen around, so feels that nobody deserves one.

11: Port Office
"The fees are killing us, but for some reason some captains (and I'm not saying smugglers but I am saying y'know) don't have to pay them?"
Two-story building, whitewashed walls, half-timber and nogging. Bright, well-lit spaces inside. Hardwood floors. Smells of fish.

12: Curiosities
"Look, all I'm saying is that they can get their hands on a lot of weird stuff for being a bunch of farmers. Check it out. It's pretty anonymous, so you'll have to look for it, but it's between the bank and the soup kitchen. Like a hole in the wall, really."
An anonymous wooden door leads into a small, cramped, but clean, store.

13: New School Building
"I'm looking forward to it; I think it'll bring a much-needed facelift for the entire neighbourhood."
A huge house currently being renovated; going to be a new school building for the Mage's Guild. Right now a lot of construction scaffolding and similar. Walls are in place, but lots to be done.

14: Old City Watch office
"If they're not going to use it, they should tear it down, sell it, or just... do something about it."
With the current City Watch expansion, the building is much too small, so was abandoned for a newer building. Dilapidated. Empty; walls and floors are worn out and dirty.

15: Priest's Council
"That place is haunted, I swear. I've heard strange, ominous things at night."
Cellar was used as the Priest's Council earlier. Paint is chipped, it smells of mildew, and only dust lives here now.

Rival: Opal Langston
"If sour grapes had a face, it'd be her. Reactionary."
Frail, constant look of displeasure, like she's eating a lemon. In reality, she hates the place because her husband died there; he was a priest.

16: Statue
"It's ugly. It's loud. What's there to like?"
In an effort to show how powerful and popular they are, the Merchant's Guild commissioned a magical statue that will jingle its money bag every full hour, and also say "A MONEY SPENT IS A MONEY EARNED" and similar useless things at 9 pm.

Rival: Captain Harg
"That woman is made of harder stuff. If iron fist was in the dictionary, it'd be her. What do you mean, it is? She is? No way!"
Gray hair in a tight bun, wears an eye patch over her right eye. She wants to get rid of the statue because it keeps waking her up at night. She's not alone in this.

17: Pet Sematary (spelling mine)
"I think it's nice that people'll have a place to bury their pets."
The farm people (or hipsters) are making this place into a pet cemetery. Right now they're preparing the grounds. There's a certain air of peacefulness around the place.

Rival: Mac Iknit
"He's been a priest since I dunno, I think my pa told me about him when he was young?"
Wears black priest clothes. Has a long, white beard. Believes that the church owns the mortality question, and that it's an affront to the gods that some doggone hippies are making their own cemetery.

18: Fortune Teller
"No! I promise you, she said I'd meet a dark, handsome man and I did!"
Dark building, torches leading up to the door a nice touch. Inside it's like every Hollywood Hoodoo Store.

19: Old Prison
"People died in those cells, and I know for a fact that it's haunted my friend from down the street says he knows someone who saw a ghost there"
Gray, quiet. Bricks, barred windows. Inside mostly prison cells, it's been abandoned for 40-50 years.

20: New Church Grounds
"It's very inviting, but a bit ostentatious."
Marble, mosaics, stained-glass windows. A fantasy version of Hillsong Megachurches. Inside statues, velvet, deep red carpet, crystal chandeliers.

Citadel
"People ending up there won't ever get out. You go there to die."
The citadel (the seat of power) belongs to the City Watch in all but name. Whatever the city's original ruler, they're just a puppet to the City Watch now. They've combined the citadel into both headquarters and prison. But what else goes on in there..?

---

So yeah. I've got a pretty fleshed out city. The farm people seem a bit off, to be honest. At least the merchants are honest in what they're about, no? My players are still not used to the freedom they're afforded -- they're somewhat unsure about their footing, but they did better the longer the game ran, and I'm sure the next time we run something it'll go even better.

From this, I'll draw up some more factions (not covered by the game) and give each faction one or two clocks. Each rival will also get their own clock, of course. Then I just need to release the party into the city and see what happens. 

The rest of the world is about as blank as it was before. Somewhere in the "middle of the forest" there's the Hole in the Oak, and in the opposite direction from the city they'll find Another Adventure Location. What that is, I don't know yet; I'll get to that eventually. I think next session (tomorrow) will mainly be purchasing equipment and navigating their very own city.

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What's up, nerds?

In the last chapter... I wrote a thread about this on the bird app, but I'll write about it here too. After a break of Electric Bastionl...