Why would anyone pass through a strange, somewhat dangerous area? As was hinted, some avoid it, some don't. But let's see:
- because they are in a hurry (want to get fast _to_ or _from_ something?)
- because they want to stay undetected
- because they are curious
- because of a malfunction they drifted into the area
- because they don't know any better (or someone 'updated' their database)
...which are all perfectly valid reasons. What'd be the fun in a game, if all journeys were constant and safe? This region does not seem too dangerous, but it doesn't need much to make for an outstanding adventure background. As long as it is usable to some, it is worth considering. Go to Comment
Now this is a cool prison for your fantasy campaign - the regeneration of the statues makes the work so wonderfully pointless. Don't tell the Provosta, but I think there is a steady trickle of converts coming from the convicts, out of spite.
Not easy to apply, but once done, it provides chrome without end (and some plot hooks to boot). Go to Comment
It is quite a read, with many delicious details. I was a bit surprised that they are actually literate, sporting a hidden library of great wisdom on the side. It also seemed that they were quite friendly; this paints a more aggressive picture. Go to Comment
Probably the main reason why this happens, is the simplest one: old civilizations lost to the sands of time, often more advanced than the current one, are kinda cool. Besides the background, they also provide the Game Master with an easy excuse for any number of treasures, traps, monsters, and of course dungeons in all the colors of the rainbow. It is one of the easiest ways to prevent the inflation of magical items ("They don't make these anymore."). This GM's little trickbox, carefully applied, can greatly increase the fun factor of a game.
It has to be admitted, though, that believability of such a world tends to suffer, as you have noted. Luckily you provide fine tools to correct this oversight. Another 'poison' could be a great conspiracy, that keeps the technological level down for its own purposes. Another consequence to consider, is the disruption of trade and other contacts between peoples. That may easily cause new languages to appear and the old ones to vanish... and we could go on.
There is some solid thinking put into this article, fun reading as well. Great work, Scras! Go to Comment
Thank you for the chuckle. An immortal(?) creature of great power, that you can easily plop into any random poor neighborhood. And there ARE PCs, who would find a lesson or two from the hermit valuable (you can't help but see, that someone would send them to him).
There is a subtle irony here, that I didn't notice at first. These wizards have learned their lesson forever, but are prevented from learning anything else (normally). Now that's the ultimate lesson!
I would think, that without feeding they would appear a bit more detached from reality, flat and emotionless; and more human when fed. Without this contact with human souls, I suspect they will lose whatever remains of their own soul. There has to be a price for immortality. Go to Comment
Yep, raw mana, the stuff dreams are made of (or at least potions)!
In my version, raw mana cannot be permanently stored, as it slowly looses the binding into material form and becomes free magic again. This process seems to halve the amount of mana in regular intervals (like radioactivity). It is also said to attract some monsters... Go to Comment
Now that has touched me... a bit silly, a bit pointless, but written with heart and soul. I would like to imagine, that those who would kill them will be marked, repaid by nature some other time. A nice fantasy biology as well.
It is a well-described upgraded wolf, of which there have been many. I like especially the third plot hook, two concepts of nature reverence clashing together, a story to place close to the naive civilization... good one. :) Go to Comment
Everybody loves a failing magician! And this one is believably built, no to mention entertaining. You can still find potential uses for this powerful wizard (well, he _does_ create powerful effects), like powering some magical item; just wait on the consequences.
Oh lord, spare us from the equality nonsense. But they are an entertaining bunch, if you get over the 'reinterpreting the Middle Ages in modern light' thing. They could annoy most PCs very quickly. :)
- "sacrificed their lives deeply" sounds strange
- the concept of fighting couples is a good one (Spartan traditions never die, this time in a different aspect :) ), more could be said of that
- the Etiquette link seems pointless
- do they employ any special tactics in battle? Come to think of it, what is their symbol?
- given their success with girls, there will be some womanizers and artist types in their ranks, always busy in the cities 'venerating the women', too much fun to ever get around to riding onto the battlefield, giving truth to some of the rumors
- the (mostly) wrong rumors are a great touch, like them! Go to Comment
A shape-shifter of some sort has taken up a post at the War College of an enemy realm, where he secretly picks off only the most promising officer cadets, arranging bizarre accidents that gradually debase the leadership of the hostile army. In the long run, this will improve his nation's chances when the inevitable conflict comes.
As a shape-shifter he can impersonate superiors and peers alike and send the target candidate to the cleverly-prepared site of his (or her?) execution. As long as he is successful, no-one will ever know about the deception--even necromancy will only implicate the one impersonated...