Last time, we took a look at the concept of world building and applied it to a small town of Borest, specifically the inn. We fleshed out a few NPCs. Now, let’s flesh out some more.
Last time, I said I’d flesh out the town mayor/selectman/elder. The reason I left him off the list is because of what I wanted to expound upon today: the surrounding areas. Adventurers gotta adventure, and who better to give a quest than the town selectman.
As a refresher:
So, who is this person?
Well, today I’ll be using the following resource:
Turning to page 239, I get the 1d100 list of random first and last names!
Rolls percentile dice…Looks like I got the name Azar Frostarm. As good a name as any. And let’s make him an elected mayor. What kind of traits does he have? What motivates him? Let’s make another roll in the book! He has…a posh attitude and clothes to match…who lost their mother’s wedding band…and is being blackmailed.
Let’s peel this back and see what kind of adventuring hooks that we can make out of it, but based on his background, we’ll flesh out the surrounding area…
- The town is being harassed or is being extorted by a local goblin or kobold tribe. The tribe claims to work for a powerful enemy, but is lying to get paid by the town.
- The mayor is being blackmailed by someone in town. He received an anonymous letter detailing an illicit deed he committed and needs the party to find out who it is and to expose them.
- A peaceful group of elves in the nearby forest have turned hostile towards the town for unknown reasons. The characters are tasked with finding out why and restoring the peace.
- An earthquake exposes the ancient crypt of a dead hero that the mayor had a statue erected in the town center. The problem is that his ghost keeps harassing the town and it seems that the hero may not have been as good as history had made him out to be.
Let’s now look at some of the locations we have created:
- A kobold or goblin lair.
- The village itself.
- A nearby forest and possibly an elven village/town/city.
- A crypt nearby or underneath the village.
There are many tools to deal with several of these locations. The previously mentioned Azgaar’s Fantasy Map Generator can easily give you the elven village/town/city. Simply place it in a forest. The village is easy as you already have a map of the town and can populate it with even more NPC’s that you can flesh out as needed, further getting the party invested in the welfare of the village and the residents.
This leaves creature lairs and a crypt. There are literally tons of online and other tools to find various maps or create maps of lairs and crypts if you don’t want to make your own. In fact, there are many free ones on Roll20 that you can get, although you don’t get a physical copy. Additionally, you can turn to the DM’s Guild website. They have lots of free and low-cost materials you can get for your map needs. In The Game Master’s Book of Random Encounters there is actually a section with temples and tombs, as well as Homes, Hideouts, Labs, and Lairs. I cannot recommend this resource enough for your DMing needs. Lastly, there’s always Google.
Of course, if you are willing to put in the work, you can bust out the old graphpaper and pencil and get to work making your own tomb/crypt/lair. I’ve found that it’s actually nicer to make your own, if for no other reason than you can gauge out encounters much easier.
So, what do you think, Dear Readers? Do you like our town mayor? What would you change about him? Can you think of any other plot hooks that we could garner from this NPC? Let me know in the comment section below.
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Until next time, Dear Readers…