Adventuring (Paludia Supplement)
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Adventurers in Paludia may face obstacles that the adventurer in a typical setting might never face. As a result, it helps to come prepared; forewarned is forearmed!
The DM has discretion in all matters relating to encounters. For the land of Paludia, the notion of random attacks and events is well-placed, as a huge variety of events have a good probability of occurrence at almost any given time. While the final choice is up to the DM, a typical possibility for a random Paludian encounter might look something like this:
|1-2||Lizardfolk attack by random tribe or wandering clan. DM may decide what kind and what number.|
|3-4||Quicksand, pit, sinkhole, mudslide or other similar natural problem.|
|5-6||Booby trap of any kind.|
|7-8||Animal attack (crocodile, monitor lizard, or other animal from the jungle or swamp.)|
|9-10||A brief but torrential downpour begins.|
|11-12||The party encounters a field of thorns blocking their progress.|
|13-14||Swamp gas is present; creating a spark or using fire-related spells is hazardous.|
|15-16||Mosquitoes are particularly dense in this area; the DM may decide if there is a chance for disease to break out.|
|17-18||A monster or monsters of some kind attacks, but the monster isn't an animal or a Lizardfolk band.|
|19-20||Lizardfolk approach the party but do not attack. What they do is up to the DM.|
Some parts of Paludia are more dangerous than others. For a more difficult quest, the set of encounters looks something like this:
|1-2||Lizardfolk with mages and shamans attack. They are accompanied by at least one giant crocodile.|
|3-4||Acid begins to seep from the ground.|
|5-6||A major trap is set off, using magical explosives, or some other incredibly dangerous device.|
|7-8||Major animal attack from dire animals, a multitude of snakes, or giant crocodiles.|
|9-10||A downpour of acid rain begins.|
|11-12||Trees fall on the party.|
|13-14||Swamp gas pours out from the surrounding area; it explodes automatically.|
|15-16||A swarm of magically-enhanced mosquitoes attacks, giving the characters a very high chance of disease.|
|17-18||A major monster, usually a black or green dragon (of at least young adult age) attacks the party.|
|19-20||An army of lizardfolk approach and will attack without being given tribute.|
Meeting with lizardfolk
Some species of lizardfolk react differently to adventurers approaching their village. Some will attack outright, others will let the party enter. Usually, the chief or other leader will want to meet with the adventurers. Sometimes, the highest shaman, cleric, priest, or mage will want to meet with the part as well.
Below is a list of some of the possible encounters in a village when the party meets with the chief:
|1-2||The chief will ask the party to leave the village.|
|3-4||The chief will offer the party the chance to fight the village's champion.|
|5-6||The meeting will be cut short by a message from the village's cleric.|
|7-8||There will be a festival held that night and the chief will ask if the party wishes to join them.|
|9-10||The chief will be distracting the party while a group of warriors sneaks up on the party from behind.|
|11-12||The chief will ask the party to do something for him (slay a nearby monster, find an object, etc.)|
|13-14||The chief will ask for tribute from the party.|
|15-16||The chief will demand that the party give homage to the village's patron deity.|
|17-18||The chief's eldest son will show up and ask the party to assist him and his warriors in a skirmish.|
|19-20||The chief's daughter will show up and ask the party to meet her in a secluded location after the meeting is over.|
Lizardfolk villages and towns come in different levels of development. Most are simple at best, but a few have more advanced goods and services available. Note that the development level of the villages and towns is independent of the size of such settlements; a larger settlement can be less developed than a smaller one, even though this isn't very likely. Below is a list of the different structures and locations that are usually available in each level of development:
Primitive: Chief's hut or cave. This settlement has little to no contact with the outside world.
Rudimentary: Chief's hut, shrine. This settlement has minor contact with the outside world.
Basic: Chief's hut, shrine, access to at least one simple craft shop (ex: fletcher, bowyer, etc.) This settlement has some contact with the outside world, but not enough to significantly impact the lives of those who live there.
Developed: Chief's hut, shrine or temple, access to at least two simple craft shops, small market (where goods besides crafts, such as food, can be bought and sold), possibly one inn. This settlement has regular contact with the outside world and merchants come to buy and sell goods. There is a chance that this settlement has an arena.
Advanced: Chief's hut or residence, temple, access to at least three simple craft shops, access to one advanced shops (herbalist, alchemist, etc), average market, no more than one inn. This settlement has major contact with the outside world, and its economy greatly benefits from the influx of merchants and visitors. This settlement also has an arena.
Sophisticated: Chief's residence, at least one temple, access to at least four simple craft shops, access to at least two advanced shops, large market, no more than two inns. This settlement has much contact with the outside world, sees many merchants, and its citizens are impacted by events and ideas from far outside the settlement's borders. This settlement has an arena, and it is likely the largest in many kilometers around.
There is also one town, Lixus, who's level of development is beyond any other in all of Paludia. It exists in its own class, beyond even the Sophisticated level.
As the level of development increases, the likelihood that the party will be well-received increases as well. Unfortunately, the number of settlements in each category drops as the level of development increases. Not that most tribes never advance beyond the basic level of development.
Another obstacle to adventurers is language. Lizardfolk speak a dialect of draconic naturally, but the more developed tribes generally speak common as well. Parties who cannot communicate with the lizardfolk are at a distinct disadvantage.
Environment and Terrain
Paludia is a very hot land, so the game rules for heat ought to be taken into account in certain areas at certain times:
Heat deals nonlethal damage that cannot be recovered until the character gets cooled off (reaches shade, survives until nightfall, gets doused in water, is targeted by endure elements, and so forth). Once rendered unconscious through the accumulation of nonlethal damage, the character begins to take lethal damage at the same rate.
A character in very hot conditions (above 90° F) must make a Fortitude saving throw each hour (DC 15, +1 for each previous check) or take 1d4 points of nonlethal damage. Characters wearing heavy clothing or armor of any sort take a -4 penalty on their saves. A character with the Survival skill may receive a bonus on this saving throw and may be able to apply this bonus to other characters as well (see the skill description). Characters reduced to unconsciousness begin taking lethal damage (1d4 points per hour).
In severe heat (above 110° F), a character must make a Fortitude save once every 10 minutes (DC 15, +1 for each previous check) or take 1d4 points of nonlethal damage. Characters wearing heavy clothing or armor of any sort take a -4 penalty on their saves. A character with the Survival skill may receive a bonus on this saving throw and may be able to apply this bonus to other characters as well. Characters reduced to unconsciousness begin taking lethal damage (1d4 points per each 10-minute period).
A character who takes any nonlethal damage from heat exposure now suffers from heatstroke and is fatigued.
These penalties end when the character recovers the nonlethal damage he took from the heat.
Rules for frequent rainstorms ought to be taken into consideration as well.