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    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Jan 12, 2013
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    From: Lublin, Poland

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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 5:23 am  
    Random Encounters

    Hi, long time no see. So I continued my Sterich campaing, and PCs ended Caves of Chaos. They decided to travel to capitol, that is - Istivin - from the Stark Mounds. As it was counted bu us as about 20 days of travel, I use exploration rules from D&D Next. Thing is I got about 8 Encounters, with one critically positive and one extremely negative. On precious one they meet Hier to Sterich Throne that has escaped Caves of Chaos. I don't have idea what to put in those extreme events. Any hint what could be extremely positive and extremely negative ( like meeting special persona ) on roads of Sterich?

    Last edited by wyrdhamster on Sat Jul 06, 2013 9:45 pm; edited 1 time in total
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:37 am  

    Random encounter tables for Sterich are in Dungeon #118, page 43. They are not exactly what you are looking for, though... It is assumed that in civilized lands you just meet people going about their business. Any random encounters are pointless. It's when you get to the hinterlands when things get interesting...

    I find the encounter tables just awful, but they are canon.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:54 am  

    First all, as special encounters I was thinking more about Fallout ones, or like you meat Elminster on beginning of Baldur's Gate. This kind of thing.

    On "normal" encounters I have to this day: bugbears and ogre band, ruins of watchtower ( uninhibited from Galmorr War ), giant storm, flooded bridge and merchant's caravan. I look for something really special, rather not next monsters, as them I can easily came up. ( But would use random table if it would be good one Cool )

    Sutemi wrote:
    It's when you get to the hinterlands when things get interesting...


    Where can I found this?

    Sutemi wrote:
    I find the encounter tables just awful, but they are canon.


    I looked on this offical, and yes, it's aweful. Seepcially as it's totally ilogical with beasts ecology ( TIGERS IN STERICH?! ), but also as EL is about 10, when my PCs party is 3rd level...
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:11 am  

    Yes, tigers in Sterich... I would like to have a brief conversation with Greg A. Vaughan one day about all this. Just to understand a few things, that's all.
    GreySage

    Joined: Sep 09, 2009
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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:30 am  

    There are many random encounter tables, pre-made, that I use in my campaigns. In the original Greyhawk boxed set you will find a booklet that contains encounter tables (pre-Wars). In From the Ashes there are more, set later in the game calendar. Both tables are terrain and nation specific. I also use the wilderness tables found at the back of the 1e DMG or Fiend Folio, too. Theres' one at the end of MM2, but I've never used it.

    -Lanthorn
    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Apr 11, 2009
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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:08 pm  

    Well, technically Tigers could exist in Sterich, in a forest at least. However, that is kind of a stretch, as Sterich is theoretically temperate (or at least subtropical, depending on how you weigh an axial tilt of 30 degrees). I am not familiar with D&D next, but I lean towards Lanthorn's method of using the pre-made random encounter tables to generate critters, combined the tables in either the original boxed set or From the Ashes. MC 5, the Greyhawk Monstrous Compendium annex has a very good list with some Greyhawk-specific critters thrown in. No list, however, is exhaustive.

    Wyrdhamster mentioned that the table he was using was too "dangerous" for his party. I would suggest that in cases where an encounter is too dangerous, it be used to add flavor, but not necessary danger. An example would be a low-level party hiking through foothills to reach a dungeon. On the way, the DM rolls for Hill Giants to appear. The 3rd level characters are finished if this goes straight to a fight. Hwever, the characters could simply encounter the giants tracks, see them in the distance, or even be spotted by them, but be easily able to escape given their lead on the brutes. In this example, the encounter occurs, it adds flavor to the adventure, but it does not end it.

    As far as a really positive/really negative encounter, these should usually be campaign specific in my view. Maybe a contact of the PCs bumps into them on the road and shares some key information about the upcoming adventure. Negative could be a thief who steals needed treasure/magic/ or worse, the horses!
    Grandmaster Greytalker

    Joined: Nov 07, 2004
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    Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:11 pm  

    20 days seems like a long time to get to Istivin. The D&D Next moderate pace of 10 miles a day seems a little slow. On roads, characters afoot would probably realistically be doing more like 15-30 miles a day, depending on how encumbered they are.

    Tigers could work in Sterich. The last tiger killed in Georgia was in the 1920's. They were fairly numerous in the Caucasus region until the 18th century. That said, the wandering monster tables give basically no chance of there being tigers in Sterich.
    GreySage

    Joined: Sep 09, 2009
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    Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:38 am  

    The range for tigers is/was quite vast, historically speaking, before we slaughtered them for their pelts. The distribution sweeps across the subarctic boreal forest (known as taiga) in Russia, down through China, into the subcontinent of India, and throughout Southeast Asia. They are actually better adapted for colder than hotter temperatures, and it is from the northern latitudes that zoologists believed they originated (and then subsequently migrated south and further evolved into different species).

    -Lanthorn
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Jan 12, 2013
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    Sat Jul 06, 2013 9:03 am  

    tarelton wrote:
    I am not familiar with D&D next, but I lean towards Lanthorn's method of using the pre-made random encounter tables to generate critters, combined the tables in either the original boxed set or From the Ashes. MC 5, the Greyhawk Monstrous Compendium annex has a very good list with some Greyhawk-specific critters thrown in. No list, however, is exhaustive.


    So I will look into them...

    tarelton wrote:
    Wyrdhamster mentioned that the table he was using was too "dangerous" for his party. I would suggest that in cases where an encounter is too dangerous, it be used to add flavor, but not necessary danger. An example would be a low-level party hiking through foothills to reach a dungeon. On the way, the DM rolls for Hill Giants to appear. The 3rd level characters are finished if this goes straight to a fight. Hwever, the characters could simply encounter the giants tracks, see them in the distance, or even be spotted by them, but be easily able to escape given their lead on the brutes. In this example, the encounter occurs, it adds flavor to the adventure, but it does not end it.


    I even was thinking about Hill Giant as bandit encounter, but change it to 5 Bugears,3 Worgs and Ogre to make it more "bandit-like". Wink Also, the idea with footsteps - is good on roleplaying side, but for this I have others encounters. D&D is also about interesting fights, so I need some Random Encounters that are beatable by PCs. Evil Grin

    tarelton wrote:
    As far as a really positive/really negative encounter, these should usually be campaign specific in my view. Maybe a contact of the PCs bumps into them on the road and shares some key information about the upcoming adventure. Negative could be a thief who steals needed treasure/magic/ or worse, the horses!


    As negative one I was thinking about making second appearance of two PCs nemesis, half-elvien, half-Suel Bounty Huntress on contract with Scarlet Brotherhood. The thing is I don't have idea for positive one - I was more leaning to Elminister encounter in Baldur's Gate, but don't know if any "offical" setting hero is working in Sterich... Cry

    tarelton wrote:
    20 days seems like a long time to get to Istivin. The D&D Next moderate pace of 10 miles a day seems a little slow. On roads, characters afoot would probably realistically be doing more like 15-30 miles a day, depending on how encumbered they are.


    We ended Caves of Chaos on edges of Stark Mounds and we estimate this should be about 200 miles - but we didn't have a scale, so we were a bit guessing. If have correct data how much this would be, pleas write.

    Also, party is having wagon and horses, so I treat as they could go with more speed than normally. Normal is fast, fast is extrem and alike.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 06, 2013 11:05 am  

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    As negative one I was thinking about making second appearance of two PCs nemesis, half-elvien, half-Suel Bounty Huntress on contract with Scarlet Brotherhood. The thing is I don't have idea for positive one - I was more leaning to Elminister encounter in Baldur's Gate, but don't know if any "offical" setting hero is working in Sterich... Cry

    We ended Caves of Chaos on edges of Stark Mounds and we estimate this should be about 200 miles - but we didn't have a scale, so we were a bit guessing. If have correct data how much this would be, pleas write.

    Also, party is having wagon and horses, so I treat as they could go with more speed than normally. Normal is fast, fast is extrem and alike.


    From the southern edge of the Stark Mounds it's more like 90 miles. If you were on the edges up near the Oyt Wood or on the northern edges of the Stark Mounds that would be about 210 miles.

    What time period are you in? I might be able to suggest some canon positive encounters.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 06, 2013 3:05 pm  

    smillan_31 wrote:
    From the southern edge of the Stark Mounds it's more like 90 miles. If you were on the edges up near the Oyt Wood or on the northern edges of the Stark Mounds that would be about 210 miles.


    So one hex is about 50 miles?

    smillan_31 wrote:
    What time period are you in? I might be able to suggest some canon positive encounters.


    It is 18th of Flocktime 581 CY. Smile
    GreySage

    Joined: Jul 26, 2010
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    Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:30 pm  

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    So one hex is about 50 miles?


    Each hex on the Darlene map equals 10 leagues (which is about 30 miles).

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    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Sat Jul 06, 2013 9:39 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    wyrdhamster wrote:
    So one hex is about 50 miles?


    Each hex on the Darlene map equals 10 leagues (which is about 30 miles).

    SirXaris


    Here it is Travel Pace table.



    As I see on Darlene Map there are 3 hexes from the Sterich, so it will be 90 miles. And as PCs are using horses and wagon, they will travel about 6 days as using fast pace, even if on rules of normal one.
    GreySage

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    Sun Jul 07, 2013 8:47 am  

    Overland travel rates can be found in both the 1e book, Wilderness Survival Guide (I LOVE that book!) as well as the original Greyhawk boxed set (I think it's the Glossography that has them). Both are VERY useful for anything dealing with distances covered by foot, vehicle, or beast.

    -Lanthorn
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 1:53 am  

    Queen of the Spiders also has generic encounter tables for Sterich.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:19 am  

    MToscan wrote:
    Queen of the Spiders also has generic encounter tables for Sterich.


    I will surely look in to this, as "Queen of the Spiders was ranked as the single greatest Dungeons & Dragons adventure of all time by Dungeon magazine in 2004, on the 30th anniversary of the Dungeons & Dragons game."

    It is 8th level adventure, so what kind of classical adventure should be between now action and Queen of the Spiders?
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 7:22 am  

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    Here it is Travel Pace table.



    As I see on Darlene Map there are 3 hexes from the Sterich, so it will be 90 miles. And as PCs are using horses and wagon, they will travel about 6 days as using fast pace, even if on rules of normal one.


    Yeah, I looked up that chart in the Next package, and it seems really off to me. I did a hike last weekend very mountainous terrain, up then back down. We averaged about 1.10 miles an hour. That was me (mid 40s) and a 62 year old. Granted, we're only carrying about 20 lbs of gear each; not wearing chainmail, carrying double-bladed axes, etc..., but this was also a really slow pace for me. I would have been going about twice as fast by myself, and I'm no D&D hero. I'd probably double or multiply the speeds on that chart by 1.75.

    As far as favorable encounters, you could use any of the sample characters from the original "giants" modules. If I remember right, Frush O'Suggill (the fighter) is an NPC in the Shadows of the Abyss adventure. Any of those characters could have been ennobled by the Earl of Sterich for their actions against the giants, so an encounter with them and their retinue on the road could be kind of interesting.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:36 am  

    smillan_31 wrote:
    Yeah, I looked up that chart in the Next package, and it seems really off to me. I did a hike last weekend very mountainous terrain, up then back down. We averaged about 1.10 miles an hour. That was me (mid 40s) and a 62 year old. Granted, we're only carrying about 20 lbs of gear each; not wearing chainmail, carrying double-bladed axes, etc..., but this was also a really slow pace for me. I would have been going about twice as fast by myself, and I'm no D&D hero. I'd probably double or multiply the speeds on that chart by 1.75.


    You see, most character in the party would be like your hicking group AND carrying heavy load. Mages are anemic, warriors are typically encumbered. And even if you got faster party members, they need to foot with others, slower.

    smillan_31 wrote:
    As far as favorable encounters, you could use any of the sample characters from the original "giants" modules. If I remember right, Frush O'Suggill (the fighter) is an NPC in the Shadows of the Abyss adventure.


    I can't find it in Dungeon 117 - on what page he is?

    smillan_31 wrote:
    Any of those characters could have been ennobled by the Earl of Sterich for their actions against the giants, so an encounter with them and their retinue on the road could be kind of interesting.


    By Earl of Sterich you mean Quarchard?
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 7:59 pm  

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    You see, most character in the party would be like your hicking group AND carrying heavy load. Mages are anemic, warriors are typically encumbered. And even if you got faster party members, they need to foot with others, slower.


    Yep. Good point about the mages. Laughing

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    I can't find it in Dungeon 117 - on what page he is?


    It's in the Istivin: City of Shadows article; not the adventure itself. Page 43. In 593 CY or whenever the adventure takes place, he is Captain General of the Istivin Watch, although from the NPC profile it looks like he spent the War fighting Iuz in Furyondy, so if you go by strict canon, he wouldn't be around in the time period you have your adventure set. I say, do whatever you want though. Everyone's GH campaign is sort of alternate history anyway.

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    By Earl of Sterich you mean Quarchard?


    Yes, Querchard wasn't made Marquis until 585, so he was Earl during your time.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:03 pm  

    Oh, yeah, I just stumbled across this thread on the Paizo boards that had some interesting stuff in it. http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2gyu1&page=1?Istivin-Trilogy-The-Harrowing-Other-Questions
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:13 pm  

    smillan_31 wrote:
    It's in the Istivin: City of Shadows article; not the adventure itself. Page 43. In 593 CY or whenever the adventure takes place, he is Captain General of the Istivin Watch, although from the NPC profile it looks like he spent the War fighting Iuz in Furyondy, so if you go by strict canon, he wouldn't be around in the time period you have your adventure set. I say, do whatever you want though. Everyone's GH campaign is sort of alternate history anyway.


    Wait a minute - canonical time period of 3rd edition is 593? Maybe I made some mess in my notes, and this is why I lost two years...
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:36 am  

    wyrdhamster wrote:
    smillan_31 wrote:
    It's in the Istivin: City of Shadows article; not the adventure itself. Page 43. In 593 CY or whenever the adventure takes place, he is Captain General of the Istivin Watch, although from the NPC profile it looks like he spent the War fighting Iuz in Furyondy, so if you go by strict canon, he wouldn't be around in the time period you have your adventure set. I say, do whatever you want though. Everyone's GH campaign is sort of alternate history anyway.


    Wait a minute - canonical time period of 3rd edition is 593? Maybe I made some mess in my notes, and this is why I lost two years...


    No. You're right, the start of Living GH was 591. But the timeline progressed as the campaign played out and adventures were published. I was just guessing the year of the adventure, but it's actually 594 CY.
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