Wednesday, January 23, 2019

The Liberation of Wormwood

Cinderheim: The Liberation of Wormwood
Wormwood, the frontier town to which you were born and bred, has been invaded by a hostile force.

The invaders came swiftly and without warning. The people of your town tried to resist them, but the town’s defenses were overrun and its protectors defeated. 

The occupiers have put the town’s leader to the sword. Most townsfolk now keep their heads down and offer only token resistance to the invaders.

But this is your town, your home, your Wormwood.

You might be able to fight back against the occupiers and free Wormwood from their tyranny. 

You may be strong of arm and skilled with a blade. You may have mastered a few arcane secrets. You may possess guile and deftness. You may have the gods on your side.

You and your compatriots are Wormwood’s last hope.

Welcome to the resistance. It’s time to rise up.

* * *

What I'm working on: a campaign set-up for Cinderheim. As you can see from the text above, the initial scenario is that each character has come of age in Wormwood--a frontier town that has been invaded and occupied by outsiders. There's a random table for the DM to roll on to determine who has invaded the town, with each invader getting their own page of brief info, suggested stats, danger and doom, and two additional random tables for the DM to find inspiration and detail to grab onto:

The supplement will also have random tables for players to roll on during character creation. This is a two-part process: you get to roll to see how your parents or guardians influenced you and you get to roll to see who your mentor in the town is and how they influenced you. Here's the Parental Influence table thus far:

As you can see, each background will have its own table that adds more detail to the town and its inhabitants. The Mentor's Guidance table does something similar, but will be more focused on a personal aspect of the character:

One of the challenges is adding "surprising" or "weird" results that could come up without having them dominate. If everything is weird and edgy in your setting, nothing is actually weird or edgy in your setting. As it is, it's possible for Wormwood to be a town that engages in cannibalizing outsiders:

And I would say "sorry" to the player who rolls up that they sealed the pact with their warlock's patron by performing the Kiss of Shame, but I'm not really that sorry about it tbh:

I plan to add some additional random tables as needed, a quick die-drop system for sketching the town's layout, and a table that will generate a "kicker" or starting scene with which to begin play.

Lemme know what else you'd like to see in the comments--no guarantees, but I might take it under consideration.