Gnomes are famous for their festive springtime celebrations. Farm villages will often dye their hens eggs bright colors; with gnomish magic, the chicks that hatch from the eggs have the very same colors. The chickens eventually lose their hues, but the stronger the magic, the longer the color stays. In a gnomish village, one can easily spot the village shaman by his flock of gaily colored fowl.
In the far reaches of a long-lost wilderness, there stands a forgotten town inhabited only by children. Though they appear normal enough, their eyes burn with madness, and they speak in a foreign, archaic tongue. Nearly a millenia ago, a powerful spell had gone awry, or maybe it had succeeded - in any case, it ended up blessing, or cursing, an entire generation of children with agelessness. However, as the centuries passed, the children's parents grew old and died, the buildings of the town crumbled to earth, and even the civilization itself faded into history, becoming lost to time. All that remained were the children, driven mad by the psychological toll of living for hundreds of years beyond their age. In time, most children died, killed off by fighting amongst themselves, while many others were driven to suicide. Only a small handful remain, and they are a strange people indeed.
On a certain continent, nearly all kingdoms worship under the same pantheon. However, in the southern reaches the peoples take a much more...liberal stance on their Gods. Statues are nude, and very anatomically correct, and icons are often startlingly brazen. For instance, the icon of (insert name), the goddess of love, is an image of two nude twins embracing in a passionate kiss, signifying the love of both family and partner. This is a source of unending outrage and offense for the Northern churches, whose traditional and modest take on religion is constantly at odds with the near-blasphemous ideals of the Southerners. While this is not enough to provoke outright conflict, there is more than enough simmering discontent and long-held grudges between the two hemispheres.
In a long-lost age, a party of adventurers are frozen into stone by the stare of some gorgon-like creature. An unscrupulous rogue, coming across the frozen party several centuries later, decides to haul off two of the statues to decorate his den. Upon his death, an artisan friend of his claims a statue and sells it to a rich merchant, passing it off as his own work. Years later, the merchant gilds the statue in bronze and re-sells it at a much higher price. After passing through the art markets for many decades, the statue ends up in the hallways of a mage academy. Imagine the chaos and confusion when a young mage's spell happens to break the curse of stone, returning the adventurer to life several centuries after his petrification! Is he interrogated by historians? Driven mad by the change of times? Or does he set off on a quest to find and liberate his other frozen party-members?
A sword that stores the identity of the wielder. To transfuse the soul to the blade, one must first stab himself through the heart. The person will not die, but lose the freedom of the soul upon real death.
The PC's stumble upon a village strangely devoid of life and activity, but they get the feeling they're being watched.
What is a king to do? A prophesy indicates that a certain person is involved with the death of the king, but the prophesy was unclear as to what role - do they cause it or prevent it.
A noble claims that a stranger did not enter the town by any normal means, but trough his mirror. The man in question is ravening mad and mutters on about vast halls connecting all the mirrors in the world.
A certain type of toads, only found in the bleak swamps of Mournmist start falling on the city where the PC's are, like rain. Why?
The spirit of a creature trapped in amber cannot escape to it’s afterlife / next incarnation / whatever.
Such trapped spirits can be contacted by those who know the right rituals and magical power derived from them – typically the power to control one individual of that species.
Can by quite powerful if the creature is a colony insect (ant, bee, wasp, etc) – simply control the queen and you command the whole colony.
Real world scientists have accidentally opened a tear in the fabric of reality, transporting their laboratory into the game world. Unable to repair and/or refuel their equipment in this (to their minds) primitive world they are now trapped.
A terrible affliction spreads through the land: A disease, highly contagious, which makes its victims mildly ill, but then permanently paralyzes the vocal cords. Dozens of reputed cures and protections are sold in the marketplaces, which gradually grow quieter and quieter...
An old, misanthropic and paranoid man feels his time is coming. There are sons to leave his fortune to, but they are not worth it, not a dime do they deserve! And he doesn't really trust anyone else. And so he has made a decision: as a part of his last will, his henchmen are instructed to burn and destroy all his holdings, buildings as harvest. The lands shall be auctioned off, the proceeds used to pay the servants. Nothing shall stay behind. Nothing.
Depending on the status of the grumpy old man, this weird occurrence may be only a family drama, or it may end up bringing an entire region into chaos. Or the son(s) have found what should happen, and want to prevent it before their sick father dies.
Not every prophecy needs to be meaningful to effect a game. In the Lord Dunsany play, The Golden Doom, a child's scrawl has an entire kingdom struggling to puzzle out what sinister prophecy it portends.
The frozen wastes stretch for miles around. Something waddles through the snow. It's a penguin: An emperor penguin. It waddles slowly, meandering toward the sea. The ranger freezes. "Stay very still," he warns. "Don't move at all." "What is it?" I ask, breathlessly. "It's the most dangerous creature in the whole Yahoo Tundra, and that penguin's about to kick its butt..." (Sorry, Epi! I couldn't resist!)
The ancient Empire of the Golden Crystal fell so long ago that little is known of them besides their legendary magical power. Supposedly, in the Golden Age of the Crystal Empire, cities were filled with enchantment, spells far beyong the ability of modern magi.
A tomb robber has returned to civilization with something never seen before: Ceramic vials of reddish dust that supposedly enhance a magician's power tremendously when the dust is sprinkled upon the floor of his workroom. The rogue selling the vials claims that they were recovered from a ruin of the Crystal Empire, but can he be believed?
Dustwood is technically not a wood from a specific tree. It is an created fuel for fires.
Starting with the sawdust from a sawmill, adding a mixture of wax or pitch, and a few other things, the mixture is pounded or pressed toghether tightly. It is normally smashed into a round container, so when it is slipped out, it looks like a small perfectly round "log". (actually a lathed log, but you get the idea). It can either be used as a log or slices of a log can be used for a fire.
In some regions, various occupations might be exclusively staffed by members of a particular race or ethnic group. As examples, a city's butchers might tradtionally have orcish blood, or all the dwarves in an area could be expected to join the miners' guild (even if they personally have nothing to do with mining). Those who violate these stereotypes may find themselves in conflict with local customs or idiosyncratic laws.
hey im new to this site but was here years ago w/ another name. anyways dont remember so im newbie by default.
Firstly, I am a sci-fi reader and I hope to meet success with my writing.
My favorite series of books are Larry Nivens RINGWORLD tetralogy (Ringworld, RingWorld Engineers, The RingWorld Throne, and RingWorlds Children)
For those that havnt read the ring world is the greatest artificial structere ever discovered.
A ring, its circumference equal to earths orbit, it is built around a sol-like star. Shadow squares halfway betwwn the ring and the sun provide 15 hours of night in a thirty hour day. 70 days equals one falan (one full rotation of ring world. The inner surface-the one exposed to the sun, is terraformed and is one millionkmwide cntrifugal force provides gravity, and rim walls 1000km high keep the atmosphere in. Population of RNH(ringworld native hominids)
estimated in the trillions.
The origins of who built it and why are too sticky to get into. But the ringworld , millions of years ago, was populated bt A race called Pak Protectors. Protectors are ancestors of all homo sapiens. they populated ringworld with homo erectus, but left no predators in the ecology. hence, hominids evolved into every ecological niche. (Vampires, Carrion Eaters, Giant Herbivores, Small Carnivores, some built great technologies and went interstellar. Oh, and ringworld is 300 million times the surface area of earth. post if youre interested, Ill elabortae on native species and alien vistors
"Look, lad! You see the streak of glowing green off the larboard bow? Them's the bright waters!"
While the lad peered intently at the eerie glow, the old salt continued. "Entire ships have been lost to the Bright, lad, for once you let it surround you, you'll never touch land again!"
Other improvisational weapons/tools:
Icicles are useful as daggers,
Bag Of Holding filled with copper pieces used by chucking the contents at foes, (by strolen)
sleeves make useful garrotes. Ya can't cut anyone's neck, but you sure can choke 'em!
Flaming Logs make great clubs, (any Barbarians out there?)
and Bee hives are very effective when thrown at a mob of enemies. :-)