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       By: MoonHunter

Patterns in surnames: There are many ways a surname could have evolved over centuries. One possibility is migration. A Roman name may have traveled to France and hence to England where it was later Anglicized. Case in point - the surname Lawrence went from Laurentius (Roman) to Laurent (French) to Lawrence (English) and then to Lowry (Scottish). There is also natural etymological evolution. For example, a Middle English spelling may have evolved to a modern English spelling (e.g. Stiward to Stewart). Where did your character's Surname come from?

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | August 7, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: MoonHunter

Surnames: Most surnames fall into one of four categories. Patronymic surnames such as Johnson pass from father to son (literally, 'Son of John'). Occupational surnames such as Cook or Miller stem from an individual's livelihood. Topographic names such as Forest or Ford identify habitation. There are also a few surnames that derive from individual characteristics or nicknames...Small and Stern for example.

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | August 7, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: MoonHunter

Surnames: The Chinese were among the very first cultures to adopt the use of hereditary surnames (around 2800 BC). But the custom didn't quite catch on in Europe - at least not until the Venetian aristocracy made it popular sometime between the 10th and 11th centuries AD. What culture made it popular in your setting and why?

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | August 7, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

       By: Tech

A world whose lands are made up of huge terrain spheres that rotate constantly with most portion underwater. As time passes, the shape of the bodies of water change, landmarks shift inside the new border lines, and mountains tilt to different degrees. Land dwellers are gypsies that can never build anything permanent, and somewhat ironically, the only stable settlements are large structures built at sea.

Ideas  ( Locations ) | August 3, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Tech

There are no scrolls in this world, but there are crystals of various sizes, colors and qualities. Every spell has a requirement on the amount and characteristics of crystals that must be held in order for the spell to be cast, crystals which would shatter should the cast be successful. Now picture a land where crystals are scarce except for high concentrations of them in specific spots throughout the land. A number of scenarios could occur, such as benign companies selling the mined valuable for cheap, a region in constant magic-intense war zone, an area of crystals in the quicksand, or an undiscovered patch next to a town...

Ideas  ( System ) | August 3, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: MoonHunter

In cultures and langauges with very few acceptable personal and family names, nicknames will be used. These nicknames will be based on their physical traits and personalities. So instead of five Ryon Khans, you have Big Ryon, Little Ryon, Fast Ryon, Ryon the Priest, and Ryon with coin. It will make finding people, for an outsider, difficult.

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | August 3, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

       By: MoonHunter

Want to avoid fighter types focusing on swords? Make Longswords and Bastardswords the weapon of the Noble class, with a death penalty for other to carry. These weapons will be ornate and finally crafted. Adventurers will be stuck with cheaply made broad and shortswords, while professional fighters might use two handed swords.

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | July 30, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Wogden

The accepted mode of getting otherwise unobtainable information is to go visit the cranky old hermit living in the mountains. It's just the sensible thing to do. So, naturally, everyone takes their monthly excursion to the hermit's hovel to consult him on everything, from lock-jaw to lovesickness, necromancers to nasal viruses.

Now, if everyone's always visiting the poor old hermit, there's going to be an enormous queue... "Wellcome to the Hermitt's Hovele, Please Take Ye a Number and Have Ye a Seate" reads the sign outside the packed dwelling.

Imagine the poor hermit, having retreated into the mountains to escape this precise situation...

Ideas  ( NPCs ) | July 29, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

       By: Roack

The PCs are stuck in a town with a strict peace policy, the tiniest scuffle can land you years in prison. The town also happens to be a tourist haven, so inn-prices have skyrocketed. The only way the PCs can rest is if they splurge on a room, with their enemy.

Ideas  ( Plots ) | July 28, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: MoonHunter

It looks like a cook's book. It is a cook's book. It is also where the cook, who happened to be a master spy, encoded all his secrets and contacts. The book has innocently fallen into your group's hands. Everyone wants it, and many are not subtle or peaceful in their attempts.

Ideas  ( Items ) | July 23, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: MoonHunter

If you want to add a "supernatural" touch to your campaign, define the rules of magic and the universe. Make your players comfortable with those rules. Then your new supernatural creatures must then break those rules.

Ideas  ( System ) | July 23, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

       By: MoonHunter

The local temple is known for putting words of wisdom of stele, in and anround the temple. These words of wisdom are normally temple proverbs or wise words, but sometimes they are "singing the praises" of any large contributor or a noble who grants them a special law. If you need proverbs and quotes for them, search a few quote and proverb sites, concentrating on religions like the temples. Put these quotes in a word doc or list, that way you can always "whip out" a bit of wisdom.

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | July 23, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Monument

War of the Roses as a campaign plot. Two noble lines converge somehow, each line thinks it has the rightful claim to the throne. Deciding this long ago was handled by some divine intervention, requiring both houses to come together at some point. They aren't so willing to get together this time. Civil war, or a new king?

Ideas  ( Plots ) | July 15, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: MoonHunter

No one is allowed to do harm to those of Highest/ Imperial rank, those of the Imperial household or those related within two steps of blood. The second tradition is an executioner must be of a higher rank than those he executes. This leads to "issues" when someone tries to harm a member of the Imperial clan or when these members are subversive. Such people are often killed by the being chained under a giant bell. They die within a day or so from the vibration, but they die untouched by Human hands.

Ideas  ( Society/ Organization ) | July 10, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

Dying God

       By: Ancient Gamer

The Church of the one true God guards a terrible secret: Their God is dying. He is kept within a tank, steamworks forever pumping to keep him alive, clockwork engines forcing his laboured breathing.

Ideas  ( Locations ) | June 29, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

       By: Scrasamax

Sneezing Sickness - A strange plant infection that causes its victim to spread the plants seeds by sneezing them about. Larger lumps of phlegm or saliva sprout is spat out in a sunny place, producing more of the plants. As the Magical version of seasonaly allergies the affliction is limited in term and non-life threatening.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | June 5, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Scrasamax

A Cloak of Shadows that causes mushrooms to grow in its own shadow. A crouching theif might find himself in a ring of poisonous toadstools, an interesting thing for a sentry to find after the thief has left hiding place.

Ideas  ( Items ) | June 5, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Pieh

The spellbook of a long dead wizard that has gained the ability to read itself and cast spells from itself. If could be amazingly powerful as an ally, or use its magic to manipulate and rule a kingdom.

Ideas  ( Items ) | June 5, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Michael Jotne Slayer

The party wakes up in an inn around a table with wine goblets near at hand. They have forgotten all that happened the last day. As they seek to find the truth they come in contact with a man that gives them a job which pays quite nicely.
When they have finished with this rather dubious assignment they are invited to dinner by the the man...
Deja Wu?

Ideas  ( Plots ) | June 4, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

       By: Michael Jotne Slayer

The PCs are sent with a diplomat to another country to protect him and do his bidding. There may be some espionage, rescuing, downright bullying, etc. Could make a nice medieval, special operations background.

Ideas  ( Plots ) | June 4, 2005 | View | UpVote 0xp

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       By: stone

Urbants-Creatures that move quickly around on their massive arms, and their "legs" dangle about from their torso, at about elbow length. They can move fairly quickly, but not as fast as an obese human, and can "jump" fairly high. Their "legs" are very powerful, and can kill with one blow. The bad thing is, Urbants cannot block attacks at their heads, which have relatively no neck, from the length of their legs being so short.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | April 6, 2004 | View | UpVote 0xp


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