Tuesday, 6 April 2021

d36 Messed Up Magical Accidents

I'm real excited for the Academies of the Arcane, because I love dumb wizards and wizard schools and crazy arcane experimentation. So in that vein:

Why is the old wizard's tower abandoned? What happened in the shuttered up sorceror's school? 

Magical Mishaps on a Massive scale, probably. Magic is messy. It's delicate like a science but exactly as wishywashy as art. Here are eighteen stupid magical disasters to roll for on a d36

A spell was miscast and became a sentient memetic plague. All casters within 2d6 miles of ground zero now ONLY know that one spell AND hunger ravenously for the taste of untainted magic

A bunch of magicians tried to summon something but the big idiots went and left the door open. Now the toxic atmosphere of the third tier of Helgaaz is leaking in and doing NOTHING GOOD for the local flora and fauna

Some dummy with a wand tried to make themselves a free lunch but there is no such thing as a free lunch and this is a CARDINAL LAW OF MAGIC. Now this hapless caster has a surplus of cursed food going rancid and attracting thaumovores from the Nth dimension

A very talented young mage made up their own spell but forgot to code the end-clause in. This stupid rainbow-sprinkle effect has dyed everything for 1d6 miles around it in a variety of garish hues and also its draining living things of their energy to sustain the effect

Some big shot moneybags genius paid a necromancer to summon them a cheaper workforce. An excellent plan until the restless souls of the dead bodies used animated a bunch of objects in said moneybags' home. Yeah that's right it's like "Beauty and the Beast" but its also got zombies

A rank amatuer started selling knock-off spell components. All the spells have been just a liiittle bit shitty as a result. One of the spells stopped working, and it was unfortunately the very-high-maintenance binding spell that kept Effregrigion the Defiler of the Damned quiet

It was probably some horny magic student who poked around in the forbidden sex magic tome and thought a magical kingdom-wide orgie was a good idea. It wasn't. The whole kingdom died after starving to death in some VERY compromising positions.

Who decided to decode Glorifon's Third Runic Set without the appropriate Circles raised? Now there are forty three abstract entities unwriting reality to restructure it one a different plane of existence. All thats left of the victims is the nagging sense that "I might have had a friend called... no, no probably not."

That one bumbling archmage only went and tried to ascend to godhood. They stacked a bunch of sacrifices and only THEN realised they hadn't adequately prepared the Vessel. Pft. Anyway now the collected energies of a mass sacrifice are swirling around underground and causing hella quakes

Some muppet went and adjusted a very basic fireball spell because they thought they could JUST MAKE IT ICE THEMED JUST LIKE THAT. No way. Now there is a perpetually thermonegative satellite hovering overhead and superchilling everything it passes over.

Alright, I get it, you wanted to regrow a lost limb. But there are certain ways to AVOID channelling too much mystical energy into it and swamping the whole area with grasping, wriggling limb worms

Some bright spark used chronomancy to sneak a few extra hours of revision in. Now the whole plane is trapped in a closed paradox loop. But on the plus side everyone is VERY prepared for finals now.

There is a very fine line between existing and not existing. Everything is mostly nothing with a few strands of delusion keeping it in line. So when some careless charlatan starts "gazing into the void" without certain precautions then the void starts gazing back and giving Existence ideas. Now the building blocks of reality have gone wonky here, and lots of things have become insubstantial and floaty

Can apprentices please stop leaving the witchlights on overnight, they WILL animate and start sucking arcane energy out of your dreams. Eventually everyone ends up a sleepless husk and the witchlight spirits will rise to rule the materia. NO ONE WANTS THAT, least of all the otherwise carefree witchlight folk.

An amatuer herbologist who is also a master magus of the third path has gone and made his topiaries sentient in an effort to stop next door's dog urinating on them. Then they saw the gardener approach with the shears and NOW we're in a bit of a war-for-the-gardens scenario

An eccentric genius worked out how to let all states of matter communicate with each other from their respective wavelengths of existence in which they are sentient beings. Now the kingdom and everything in it is starving because no one can eat anything without it cleverly debating its way off their plate.

Another pyromancer went properly mental and managed to ignite the atmosphere. The flames have since died down but all thats left is ash. 

A cocky lil turd of a wizard tried to turn the king's heir into a frog to "teach him a lesson" but that magical prince-frog-hybrid laid frogspawn (because life uhhh finds a way) and now an army of human-headed carnivorous tadpoles is in the water supply. Also the king killed the wizard so noone knows how to solve it. NEXT TIME MAYBE SOLVE DISAGREEMENTS WITH WORDS

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

The Cup Overfloweth with Backgrounds

         I have a bunch of floating backgrounds for Troika! and they aren't going in my zine anymore, so have at them. I might illustrate some more and put them up on itch at some point, but at the moment I'm making little worlds for the Great Troika! Pocket Sphere Jam and finishing off the last bits of content and the layout for the first Realms Zine (which be more worlds, really, but bigger and with spells and backgrounds).

        I'm pretty excited about finishing Realms. The first one is Irifice, a city of towering spires so tall they span between planes of existence. Irifice is a setting I've been playing in and writing about since I was a kid, inspired by Tanelorn in Moorcock's Eternal Champion books and every high magic metropolis I've daydreamed about on visits into the city. With any luck, you'll soon be able to join me in adventures up and down it!

        In the meantime, here are the six new backgrounds! These guys were written for specific places that I'm not planning on visiting immediately, or else were leftovers when I had enough backgrounds already in place for a world. Hope you enjoy them!

1 Attentive Waiting-staff

There are dining halls in Troika and Irifice so strange, so avant-garde and so busy that they become a kind of stress-fuelled crucible for the staff working there. You've made ten lattes at once, each with a different metamagical syrup infused, and carried the lot across the room without a tray. You've navigated the fraught tensions and politics of the kitchen pass and you've tried almost everything on the menu. Eventually, though, everyone working in hospitality starts looking for a real job.


- Worn Apron, tattered but remarkably hardy- as Lightly Armoured

- Serving Tray, as Shield

- Tea Set or Coffee Flask

- A fixed Rictus Grin which no customer, however determined, has managed to crack (+1 to Etiquette while worn)

Advanced Skills

2 Etiquette

2 Awareness

2 Run

1 Balancing

1 Drinks Preparation


You've definitely got a degree in something, but it's been a long shift and you don't remember what it was you studied right now. When you do remember, mark it down as an Advanced Skill with 1d3 Ranks in it.

2 Breaker of Worlds

You are one of the many souls who rise up, throughout the endless Spheres and Realms, to grasp at something bigger than themselves- grasp at it, and pull it tumbling down towards them. You are a would-be conqueror, a ruler-in-the-making. All you need now is a suitable site to stamp your boots and stick your flag. Once you have yourself a flag, that is...


- An over-sized Axe, Maul OR Greatsword

- A second-hand suit of Medium Armour

- The last 2d6 silver pennies of a haul of loot, along with the story of how you won it.

Advanced Skills

2 Fist Fighting

2 Weapon Fighting with chosen weapon

2 Intimidate

1 Awareness

1 Climb

1 Run

1 Public Speaking

3 Calligrapher-Assassin

There are those who want a target killed and care not for the bloody details, and there are those who might hire a member of your own ancient and noble order. Calligrapher-Assassins are honor bound to record as much detail as possible from their assassinations, and over the years have perfected a range of strange effects they can use their inky skills towards. 


- Fine Calligraphy Brush and 2d6 Vials of Ink

- 1d6 Vials of Poisonous Ink

- Dagger 

- Dark, form-fitting robes (as Light Armour)

Advanced Skills

3 Calligraphy

2 Poison

2 Sneak

2 Locks

1 Dagger Fighting

1 Spell- Ink Minion

4 Dedicated Rationalist

You know that magic is make-believe, no matter what those pyramid-scheme “Wizards Schools” try to tell people. Any time there’s a tangible magical effect that you can’t outright deny, you know that it’s nothing more than a symptom of Chaos itself worming its way deeper into Reality. Your sharp, axiomatic wits are the best defense against that particular problem, you’re quite sure.


- The not-insignificant wits of a trained debater

- Book of handwritten notes, all detailing specific spells and how they aren’t really magical at all

- Suit of clothes, once expensive but now tattered

- Smoking Pipe with 2d6 charges of an obnoxiously odorous dried herb to put in it

- Duelist’s Rapier, damages as a sword but looks much flashier. 

Advanced Skills

2 Evaluate

2 Awareness

1 Sword Fighting

3 Spell- Undo


When you cast the spell Undo the Stamina cost is only equal to the cost of the spell to be undone, rather than double it. This effect is only usable while you cling to the tenets of Rationality- if you ever waver in your disbelief and cynicism, you have to pay full price just like any other slack-jawed idiot.

5 Verisimilicant

You stumbled out of a mirror in a strange land after getting lost in the Desert of Shards. You have no idea how to get back to wherever it is you came from, and you’ve been different ever since, shifting and changing in response to the places and people you meet. Are you even the person you remember being, or are you just a reflection now?


- Clothing that is bland and neutral

- A Knife

- A Pocket Mirror whose reflections are always just a little… wrong

Advanced Skills

4 Disguise

2 Awareness

2 Sleight of Hand

1 Run

1 Climb


You can use your Disguise advanced skill without any make-up or costumes to change into. You can also Test Your Luck to “fit in”, whether that’s your name turning up in some paperwork or your face seeming familiar to a stranger.

6 Weird Knight

There are souls who spend too long in certain strange limbos and demi-planes, and are forever changed by those places. You are just one such soul, a mortal pressed into the service of abstract processes you can barely understand. Your kind often travel either to return to their strange home, or else finally escape its influence once and for all.


- A Weapon of your choosing, seemingly made from the same matter as your physical form.

- Strange Armour which melds seamlessly with your physical form (as Heavy, but only taking up 2 inventory slots) when worn, but fits no-one else

- An inconsequential Memento of your long-lost mortal life. Perhaps a locket or an old child’s shoe.

Advanced Skills

2 Astrology

2 Second Sight

2 Fighting with your chosen weapon

1 Awareness

1 Strength


You are at once more and less than mortal. Whenever you are in an environment similar to the Limbo you came from, you gain an extra 1 rank in all your Advanced Skills. Resting in this environment restores 3d6 points of Stamina instead of the usual 2d6.

Sample Limbos and similar environments

1. Tower-Limbo of Irifice- tall, built-up urban environments remind you of the endlessly soaring Towers-Between-Cities...

2. Deepest Woods- a forest that is thick enough to block out the sky overhead reminds you of the dark, turned-around chaos of the interdimensional underbrush...

3. Mirrorshard Desert- any tundra or plains with harsh enough weather to warrant extra protective gear reminds of the vast desert of glass that spreads in each mirror, just out of sight from the glass itself...

4. Astral Cloudscape- a lofty, high-up place with a view dominated by the sky is reminiscent to you of the endless expanse of shifting clouds...

5. Grey Purgatory- drab, hopeless, but more-or-less safe places remind you of the tormentingly mundane Grey Purgatory that awaits the spirits of the unremarkable after death...

6. Hellgaaz- ruins and decaying structures remind you of the hellscape of destroyed buildings that swallows up forgotten places... 

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Afternoon Tea under Endless Skies

Ah, how I love tea. Almost as much as I love a little weird science-fantasy gaming of an evening. So imagine my delight when I realised tea sets were an item in the core rules of Troika!, which has to be my favourite RPG at the moment
                I've wanted to write something about this lingering idea for a magical version of tea that is prized in certain worlds for its effects- I think it was germinated nearly a decade ago when I first read this thread years ago, which I think had the British of that world doing just that. Anyway: here's a patchy list of fantasy teas. 
Afternoon Tea under Endless Skies

Travellers through the humpback sky meet, and sit and sip at tea while they parley. The denizens of Irifice take theirs on plazas coiled around spires that reach the sky, for pleasure and business. In Azurhaven, visitors are plied with brews made from magical leaves.
            In the Highest Worlds, where magic is purely an imagined and unreal thing, the various forms of tea may simply be relaxing or stimulating to a drinker. As one descends through the worlds towards the deeper chaos, it becomes an altogether different matter: teas’ can be brewed that alter one’s perception, or ameliorate the drinker. There are teas whose steam dances with a genuine will of its own, and teas which reflect the future faces of the one who leans in to taste.

A Menu for your Perusal
Roll 1d2, then 1d6
11…     Empire Breakfast Tea is a blend most popular in the Empire of Prydain, where the Greencoat Druids sip it for its magic-enhancing powers. Gives 1d6 points of Magic, which can be used in place of Stamina for spell costs.
Yennish Sencha is left to dry out in great bowls, only opened under the light of the moon. There are many small cults and initiatory orders built around the prophetic visions granted by this tea. After drinking, a player may receive one description of a future locale from the GM, OR have a free pass on death once by declaring that their vision has not yet come to pass.
Vendin Matcha has a popularity like no other in the former Vendin-Conglomerate, where the powdered leaves are drunk from brew-cannisters which are sold like fizzy drinks there. The cheaper brands are sweetened mush, but the really high-end drinks give their drinkers a temporary 2 points in all mentally focussed skills.
Underwood Brew is a haphazard drink grown from the wiry wild teabushes of Daldria, and brewed largely by the maddened hedge-men and women who haunt the Great Ridge. Your average inhabitant wouldn’t touch the stuff, pungent and bitter… but with it the hedge-folk can speak in the language of trees for as long as the thick taste stays on their tongue.
Milkwood Oolong is an Irifician favourite, delicate and fine. The highest echelon of nobles in the City of Spires sip at Milkwood to sweeten the very meaning of their words, automatically making them more likely to land favourable with listeners.
Tremulan Tisanes are in reality a whole range of teas, spiced and flavoured with various leaves. They are the drink of choice for the djinn-eater theocrats, who bind the unwary spirits to the plants themselves and then drink them down.
Dioresque Tinctures are rarely taken for pleasure. This is a brew, syrupy sweet, which will temporarily fend off almost any of the deadly maladies which stalk that beautiful city. It grants immunity to disease for 1d3 days, at the permanent cost of that many points between Luck and Stamina.
Fomalian Caravan Tea isn’t actually from Fomalia, but the explorers who first brought it to their civilised eastern enclaves thought that sounded more dangerous and exotic. It does have a stimulant effect- a drinker must test their luck, or else have the jitters and lose 2 Skill for the rest of the day and miss a night’s sleep. On a passed test, gain an extra initiative chit until your next rest.
Saahni Chai is a blessed liquid of pure starlight, brewed in the celestial city itself. It’s said to bring true yet fleeting oneness with the multiverse to the drinker, but no-one has yet bottled the stuff to take it from Saah.
Spiced Vyhemi made its way from the sphere of Kraimera to fighting pits on a hundred worlds for its power to send a drinker into a blood-hazed frenzy at the slightest provocation. Curiously, actual Vyhemi-born drinkers remained staunchly unaffected.
Mud Stew is the closest translation for the tea brewed by the Tribal Orders Most Splendid, a collection of diverse cultures dwelling alongside the winding Yahza River. It is very popular amongst the tribes there for the resistance it provides against the ever-present Sorrowflies, though visitors have discovered it grants almost total immunity to all manner of psychic effects.
Cahali White Tea is a relaxing tea which restores all stamina used on spells in the last 2d6 hours. It is another popular Irifician drink, though all of the very high quality stuff is hoarded by the Tower Academies.

Monday, 10 September 2018

Weird Worlds (part four)

The Switchboard
When the technocratic society of the Vendin-Conglomerates expanded rapidly and spilled out, off their home-sphere, their first act was to establish a vast communication network that would act as the bastion of their ever-growing revolution. It was the Vendin who first designed the crystal-sets which would resonate between realities, and who managed to reverse engineer the songs of dragons and angels to understand the frequency of different spheres. Before these marvellous breakthroughs, though, the daring engeniuses of the Conglomerates set out on an ambitious plan to link as many spheres as they could reach with a powerful wired network. Huge gate-towers still stand on several worlds as testament to this project, but somewhere adrift between these worlds lies the source of the great thick bands of cables that spill out of those towers: the Vendin Switchboard.
            When the Vendin-Conglomerates inevitably collapsed inwards, the Switchboard had been running on a skeleton staff for years: the technology and magic that powered it was long outdated, and it was considered by the engeniuses of the time to be impossible to update and improve. The fall of the Conglomerates forced the last few resident engeniuses to flee the Switchboard, leaving it as a flickering husk, out between the worlds.

The Room
The Inhabitants
The Equipment
A huge room divided into many, many corridors between huge banks of cables and archaic circuitry. Dark and dusty.
The room is deathly silent except for the occasional whirring sound, followed by a gasp. Somewhere out of sight lies a half-clockwork man, dying at an excruciatingly slow pace and completely maddened by the process (9/6/1)
A massive, multi-powered portal cannon sits inert in this room, apparently partially dissected by looters. A misfiring and dangerous cable lies loose from it.
A low-ceilinged crawlspace full of detritus. The “roof” is a wrought iron grate through which a room can be seen above.
There is a constant pattering and ticking, generated by hundreds of tiny copper insects which click and whirr, always endeavouring to stay just out of sight of the players. They are ostensibly there to fix small faults in the cables, but for whatever reason they have swarmed this room (3/2/1 each)
A bank of consoles still occasionally flickers with lights and low “boops” alerting non-existent cable-jockeys to incoming transmissions that are more likely the space-bugs out in Nothingness chewing on the cables somewhere. Maybe they could be jury-rigged to send out some kind of communication?
A long, boxy room with shelves and shelves of machine parts and spools of cable. 1-in-6 chance that there is a still-barely-working version of any broken machine on the Switchboard somewhere in here.
An automaton is slowly working its way through the room, marking notes on a pad it carries as it goes. It will answer most questions the players pose to it, and apparently believes them to be engeniuses here on a survey. (8/20/1)
The various parts of an automaton are in a heap on the floor, right next to a casket that seems built to animate things of that very nature. If only it had a power-source…
A narrow set of corridors and cubicles, each with a dusty little console area of brass dials and switches.
A pair of grubby-looking human looters are here, trying to work out how best to transport spools of the valuable interplanar cable out of the Switchboard. (7/7/2)
A full and working set of engenius tools is laid out on a work-desk, including a spanner-staff and welding rifle plus several high-vibratory screwdrivers and a bag of wire-ties.
A long and low hall with plenty of decorative features and minimal Switchboard hardware. This must have been a reception area of some sort, because there are once-comfortable chairs dotted in the corners.
There’s a curious and immobile set of clockwork androids frozen in interaction with this room, who will activate if moved in any way. Their internal wind-up mechanism is extremely efficient and will power them back up if they are nudged in the slightest, letting them get back to the random busy-jobs they were attending to. (8/10/1)
A loose tangle of cables cascades from the ceiling, with a large and badly damaged portal-hole beneath. Nearby is one of the old portal control panels, which looks vaguely usable.
A tall cable-room, filled with great wrought-iron cages through which run thick lengths of cages from floor to ceiling. The cables disappear into strange devices that would once have acted as portals between the various spheres, but now are inert holes.
EITHER no animate entities inhabiting this room OR a clockwork facsimile of a dragon is coiled dangerously in the corner, depending on your own sensibilities- if, for example, the players have just managed to escape one dragon it would be fair to let them off of this one. The dragon is 16/36/4 and does damage as a real dragon, but cannot breathe fire. It is without a doubt the personal project of an engenius, crudely stashed here as an impromptu security measure.
Hefty, boxy switchboard units have been wheeled in here for storage, each one covered with cable-plugs and levers. One amongst them, barely distinguishable as different, controls the layout of the Switchboard (which itself acts as a huge circuit) and adds or subtracts rooms as required.

New Background: Old-World Engenius
Whether you’re merely emulating the old Vendin Engeniuses or you’re a bone-fide relic of that time somehow preserved or transported to the present is irrelevant: the fact is that you’re a dedicated problem solver and there are plenty of problems before you. Grab your spanner-staff and tighten up your adrenalin-valves, because the fun has just begun.

- EITHER an archaic spanner-staff OR a repurposed welding-rifle (damage as fusil, but with a limited range)
- A thick, hardy apron and metalworking gauntlets (modest armour)
- A set of goggles that don’t serve any purpose other than emulating the vaguely steampunk aesthetic of the old Vendin ways.
- 1d6 spools of copper wire
- 1d6 Arcane Fuses

2 Metalworking
2 Engineering
2 Evaluate
1 Tool Fighting
2 Spell (Jolt)

Using a combination of evaluation and engineering you can try to jury rig a wide range of objects into animation if you have a spool of copper wire and an arcane fuse handy. The less suited to mobility it is, the faster it decays back into an inert state. 

Sunday, 2 September 2018

Gods of the Weirdways

There's an amazing post on Daniel Sell's blog which is for generating deities for your games. Personally, I think most of the fun is in making them up on the fly and seeing how those celestial or infernal babies learn to walk/run/slither/fly. But that said, I've also become really attached to a few of the gods I've generated from that table. So I'm sharing them here!

Espira, Lady of Metropoli
534: Cities
636: Dolls
114: Destiny
144: Blindness

Lady Espira is the patron Goddess of Irifice, City of Spires. She is the lady of cities and their dwellers all throughout the Spheres, protecting the civilised way of life. But her blessings are not given from any sense of goodness: such a concept is not easily grasped by Espira, who as a mortal knew nothing of love or compassion. Rather, her protection over cities is possessiveness, much in the same way a petty child with churlishly hoard her favourite toys. And that is what Espira sees, when she looks at the settlements she favours: dolls’ houses, to be played with and admired. Her games are part of what weaves the weft of fate and destiny in the cities, animating the streets and buildings with a life all their own and a path through time for the souls inside them. Espira herself is blind, just as Justice is, her attention limited in ways the mortal mind cannot understand.
            Worship of Espira inevitably involves some kind of theatre or play-acting, along with banquets and weddings staged for maximum dramatic effect. These rituals are all designed with the idea of keeping Espira’s attention for as long as possible, that the boons of her good mood may long continue.
Lady-Patrician Eliza (6/14/3) is the closest thing to a High Priestess that Espira has. Eliza dresses in a long, flowing dress that is patch-worked between the styles of a school-yard play-dress and a nanny’s long skirts. Eliza organises the entertainments and rituals, and communes with Espira in the Sanctum of Houses, a huge room filled with tiny model cities. Once a year the children of the city bring fresh toy houses and towers to the Sanctum, made from whatever they have to hand. The finest are brought in and added to the collection.
            Only Eliza knows the location of Espira’s most sacred space, an ancient and hallowed room in the depths of Irifice’s oldest district. Not much can be said of this sealed tomb- for a tomb is what it is, a little concrete cell with nothing in it but the mummified body of a girl, eyeless, and her little doll’s house.

Aspensi, the Owl
446: Animal Spirit
336: Riddles
635: The Afterworld
436: Malice

Aspensi is a great white owl who haunts the limbo-after-life, the great grey space overlaying the material worlds that uncertain souls sometimes find themselves haunting as ghosts. He is a wise and noble creature, to be sure, but has no interest in the living beyond their endings. He is rarely seen to be benevolent or kind, since his role in the limbo-after-life is to frighten and test those who have stumbled there. With riddles and tricks delivered by his owls, he hounds the ghosts of the living to some kind of conclusion.
            Aspensi is only really worshipped in the Barrow Hills, where he is treated with both fear and respect. Barrow Hills is a deeply haunted place, and the few villages that cling to life there are tortured by the moans of ghosts and the predations of ghouls and other corporeal undead. Kindnesses to the owls and the wearing of certain protective charms and sigils holy to Aspensi are thought to keep these restless dead away.

Fergan Son-a-Connah (8/18/3) is the unspoken human champion of Aspensi. He is primarily a hunter and bowman operating humbly in the woods just outside of his village, but he has been acting as shaman and witchdoctor in matters of the dead for his whole life, just like his mother before him and her father before her. Fergan is always followed by a great barn owl.

Banzion, Lord of the Edge-Feast
163: Banquets
643: Excrement
516: Zero
166: Vice

Banzion presides on his court at the edge of Nothing and Something, teetering on the brink of annihilation. Legend has it that he was once solely the lord of Feasts and Wines, in a time long before the current aeon. When his kingdom began to collapse and all that he ruled fell into nothing, Banzion laughed at the disarray and decreed he would have one final feast before his banquet-hall too was consumed. Reality granted him this last wish, and Banzion gleefully set his celebration in motion- and has been partaking of that same feast ever since. Of course, to keep the banquet going it must remain interesting, and so Banzion’s Edge-Feast has become a mess of flagrant vice and abhorrent messes as he and the guests seek ever-new ways to stimulate themselves. Banzion is invoked by those who wish to enjoy life at all costs, those who will selfishly pursue pleasure and the fulfilment of all appetites. He is the god of mouldering cheeses and mushy, overripe fruit. He is the god of perversions, and of balancing between here… and nowhere.

The Noble Paenn Fernandigras (6/20/2) is a practicing worshipper of Banzion. A fundamentally goodnatured man to all who meet him, Fernandigras is a morbidly obese little man who has become almost spherical. Unable to support his own weight, he is ferried around on a litter by his Morsels (5/6/1), tiny muscular men who wear white loin clothes and are always oiled, so as to escape his hungry, grasping hands. The Morsels are inhumanly agile as a result of natural selection: those who are not are ultimately eaten. Fernandigras enjoys his life immensely, touring the banquet-circuits of cities such as Irifice and Troika and telling long-winded and rambling stories which people know by now they have to endure listening to. 

So... what kinds of Gods and Goddesses have you been generating? 

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Weird Worlds (Part Three)

In part one I shared the Neverwoods, and then the Garden-Lands in part two. Now, onto Hellgaaz! 

One of the more recent hell-dimensions to spring into existence, Hellgaaz is a post-industrial nightmare, half-alive and half-inanimate and slowly spreading to eat up forgotten parts of other spheres.
            Hellgaaz is a favourite location to banish enemies to, since the local souls are made brutal by the place and the geography itself is unreasonable and untenable. Hellgaaz, as an ever-expanding place which exists somewhere between the real and the abstract, is infinite in its own way. To explore, generate rooms on the table below, varying size and shape as you please but keeping the same decayed-industrial aesthetic:

This room is…
… a huge warehouse-interior, with a collapsing ceiling revealing dark orange skies…
… weird machinery protruding from the ceilings and/or walls, dangling wires and pipes which twitch and grab at those coming too close…
… 2d6 savage-punks, dressed in post-apocalyptic fashion and toting improvised weapons made of whatever they had to hand.
… a cramped set of steel-walkways, under which unseen things scuttle…
… a pit hidden beneath refuse which continues down into endless darkness, hot winds rising up from the depths…
… a great monster of tortured metal and broken tarmac, which slumbers fitfully and snarling as it dreams.
… a mess of rubble, unrecognisable after centuries of erosion…
…a grim heap of mangled machines and bodies, some of which moan feebly as you pass...
… an infestation of the thumb-sized biting flies which drone lazily overhead, until enough have massed to strike.
… a bare concrete pit, open to the hot winds above…
… a hideous and clunking boiler-tank fitted in the centre, filled with a tortured djinn which wails and begs for release…
… an unsteady floor, which could collapse at any moment into another room.
… a factory floor full of the collapsing means of production, slowly rusting all about the place…
… a ramshackle campsite, bearing the flags of one of the savage-punk tribes who stalk this hellhole…
… a wall which has crumbled out into the deserted wasteland of concrete and tarmac outside.
… a cracking and crumbling multi-storey car-park-like shell…
… a collapsing entrance into the goblin labyrinth, almost hidden behind heaps of detritus…
… 1d6 injured savage-punks, spiteful and wanting nothing more than to share their pain.

What terrible things are happening in Hellgaaz?
1.      You are here because abandoned places in an otherwise peaceful sphere are beginning to collapse into this hell, and there must be some way to stop it…
2.      Somewhere in the vastness of Hellgaaz is the palace of a fallen god, only theorised about in certain vile tomes… you intend to discover that place, and the foul intelligence behind Hellgaaz itself…
3.      You are here chasing down criminals who have been using this hellscape as a network between worlds.
4.      You are here because, in desperation, it is the last place you have access to for travelling between worlds… if you can get out again…
5.      You are here because someone told you there are innocent souls to be saved in Hellgaaz, and you cannot abide the thought of them, trapped here.
You are here because some of the Savage-Punks have been whispering about a warlord, one who intends to gather all the damned of Hellgaaz and lead them out, back into the many spheres…