Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Making 5e weird...

One of the things I wanted to get away from with my Friday night game was the use of some of the more standard tropes of D&D. I've been reading a lot of DCC adventures, and listening to the Iron Tavern actual play podcast, and running a bit of DCC on the side… and I just want things to be a little more weird.

Last Tuesday Dyvers wrote about breaking away from the psudo-european setting, and that’s exactly what I’m doing (or at least trying) with my Weird New World. The basic overview I gave my players was the following:

About a century ago the New World appeared in what had been an empty stretch of ocean, and exploration and settlement began almost immediately. Strange ruins of cities designed for creatures larger than men have been found containing strange treasures and even stranger magics. Few settlements exist far beyond the coasts, and the interior largely remains a mystery. Creatures unlike those found in the Old World mix with the familiar, and even those things that seem familiar often have shocking differences…

Much of what I've thrown at them has been the familiar, at least from my side of the screen. The fishmen that attacked the ship were just kobolds, and the parasite-zombies were cultists, and the witch was a dark acolyte.

The party hasn’t found any magic yet, or even any treasure, so they have yet to really experience the oddness that this setting is going to provide. Right now the predominant inspiration for the mood is definitely New Orleans Gothic, but I’m going to draw in a more mesoamerican feel mixed with Barsoom/Purple Planet weirdness once they get off the coast.

One thing I’m going to focus on is the size difference of the ruins/dungeons. It’s going to be big enough to be an annoyance and just alien enough that I hope it throws them off a bit. I haven’t decided if they’ll ever encounter the Builders or not. I suppose it depends on how the game goes…

Speaking of Purple Planet weirdness, I got the first shipment from the kickstarter in the form of a poster!


It looks like this, but without the DCC trade dress over the moons. Gonna have to get a frame for it.

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