Settlement: Nisk Under-the-Wing
Ok, Sure its a sodden, swampy valley, but you have to admit can’t beat the view
Setup: Existing for decades as little more than a desolate peat farming settlement on the edge of a bog, Nisk became the staging ground for the last stand by a group of heroes against an ancient dragon, who saved the kingdom by working a great act of magic and petrifying the wyrm in the middle of its pre-rampage monolog. Decades and innumerable tourists later, Nisk has become a major artery of trade for the kingdom, as well as a place for younger adventures to come and learn from the legacy of their forebearers.
Defeating an ancient dragon will make anyone’s reputation, but the wizard Everett Paliisar who worked the petrification magic has made it into an identity, opening a renowned magical workshop and taking the stone dragon as its sigil. The only problem is that even decades after his triumph, Paliisar has NO idea how he managed his magical miracle, and into his old age has barely managed to stave off questions and requests to repeat his great trick. When the party comes looking for some tutoring or help with their own problem in need of petrification, expect Paliisar to make them jump through innumerable hoops in hopes of dissuading them.
In addition to the swampy waterways, Nisk is surrounded by ancient rainforest that once provided shelter and hunting grounds to the dragon. The forest also contains the ruins of a nameless kingdom, lost in ages past to some unknown catastrophe. Notoriously haunted by monsters and spirits so old that their identities have worn away, these vine choked structures have a siren song that have called to adventurers for generations.
During their adventures in the region, the party obtains a coded treasure map that once deciphered guides them to climb the cliffs behind Nisp, make their way out onto the dragon’s head, and rappel down into its mouth. Apparently some daring group of thieves had been using the cave that’d formed from the dragon’s gullet and foremost stomach to store their ill gotten gain. What happened to these thieves, and and what they left behind to guard their treasure is a story for another time, but the party will need to watch themselves regardless. The elemental energies of the petrified dragon have begun to manifest as spiny crystalline growths, which can have unpredictable effects if exposed to magic or stabbed into a clumsy adventurer’s flesh.
Those eager to make a name for themselves are often drawn to Zillo’s, a rougher establishment on the edge of the settlement where hot-blooded brawlers can compete in an arena for prizes and the chance to be scouted by attending nobles and freecompany recruiters. Every fortnight there’s a special bout where would-be champions are matched against one of the hobbled drakes kept beneath the arenas foundations, a cruel and unpredictable tradition that lets those desperate enough for fame claim to be dragonslayers like Nisk’s first defenders. Zillo’s management is known to pay top price for drake eggs or hatchings, and does a tidy trade in dragonflesh on the side.
The city of Louisville, KY, has settled a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Breonna Taylor's family. The lawsuit was filed in April, one month after Taylor was killed by police in her own apartment. Officers entered the apartment in the middle of the night on a 'no-knock' warrant and fired at least 10 rounds into the home, killing Taylor.
According to local news, the settlement, which comes 6 months after Taylor's death, is the largest police misconduct payment the city has ever paid in a lawsuit, surpassing an $8.5 million settlement paid to a man who was wrongfully imprisoned for murder for nearly a decade. More details are expected to be announced later in the day on Tuesday, Sept 15.
One expected reform will include a new rule that requires commanding officers to review and approve all search warrants. Another will reportedly create a warning system to flag officers with previous incidents of misconduct. One of the officers involved in the case has been fired from the department, and two others remain on administrative leave. None have been charged with any crime.
The town of Fog’s Edge stands somewhere at the inhospitable fringe of civilization. Its residents are hard folk, outcasts and brave souls. Its visitors likewise daring and adventurous...
How will your party fare at Fog’s Edge, and out in the wilds beyond? Will they find riches of old, or will they meet the same end as so many who have gone before them?
→ The Town of Fog's Edge
A small, system-neutral town ready drop into your fantasy world,
and a foundation on which to base more adventures.
The sound of metal hitting metal rings out as a dwarven blacksmith and his human apprentice forge a heavy machete. The scent of bread drifts across the settlement to the weary adventurers camping outside the gates, who look between each other and count their coins. At the top of the stone watchtower, a gray-haired man stares over the edge of the basin at the rolling fog-banks below, thinking of days long past and friends lost.
Read more: The Town of Fog's Edge
This is our first article from Garm, our new part-time writer. Please let us know what you think! We'd love to hear your helpful feedback in the comments, even if it's just to welcome Garm to the team. :)
I was wondering if you’d be able to help me flesh out a loose idea I had for a location that I’d like to include in my homebrew setting at some point.
It’s a theocratical city-state with a heavy bell aesthetic. Like, the city is absolutely littered with bell towers, and whichever divinity is worshipped here uses bell as their holy symbol. Aside from being situated in a seemingly peaceful stretch of grasslands, and world itself being somewhat high-magic… that’s all I have so far.
Any ideas as to what this place could be beyond the vague idea I’m sitting on? And what sort of adventures do you think could be had here?
I’d appreciate any help you’re willing to offer with this! Thank you!
Setting: The Plains of Stormgraven
"Leave it to fanatics to build their home in the one place the gods seem intent on wiping off all the maps.”
Setup: Once the sight of a great transgression against the divine, the grand pastoral realms now known as Stormgraven are today an expanse of calm, rolling fields, tempest haunted badlands, and expansive, half buried ruins that only hint at the calamity still echoing through the plains to this day.
There are three sorts of people who live in the region:
Scavengers looking to pick through ancient ruins, (which can be sorted into “academic” or “tomb raiding” types respectively) There’ve been ruins so long in the plains that this group has solidified into it’s own ethnicity with cultural rites, festivals, and a nomadic, adventurous flair.
Simple farmers wanting to make good use of land despite the rustlers looking to steal their livestock and the cyclones looking to steel their houses, mostly made up of descendants from a long fallen empire.
The Resoundant, a community of religious exiles from a neighboring kingdom who fled to the plains after they lost a generations long civil war that they also started. Fleeing a “decadent and ungodly” homeland some two centuries ago, they’ve built themselves a great polis warded from the region’s hostile weather by it’s innumerable sacred bells.
These three groups push against eachother with varying levels of hostility: The Resoundant hire the scavengers to clear out ruins for them to ensure the land is safe for settling, but believe the treasures pulled from deep undergorund belong to them by divine right. The Farmers are happy to feed the holyfolk in exchange for warding against the storms, but chafe under the increasingly restrictive religious duties that are added to their lives. The scavengers bring plenty of outside coin into the region with their trade, but seem more than happy to turn bandit when times are lean.
Hallowtoll, the great city-state of the plains is where all these peoples and conflicts mingle together, a turbulent place in the otherwise peaceful plains, or the only calm eye when storms sour the countryside.
Hired by outsiders to delve a particular ruin, the party finds themselves at odds with a scavenger-band who’s been exploring the region for generations. Does the party clash with the locals, or make their way past their initial foux-pas to work with them? How about sharing their wealth with the band, rather than some outside historian who decided to lay claim to it?
Forced to stop their travels by a windstorm that threatened to blow them off the road, the party shelters alongside a farmer-enclave built partially under/into a hill. it’d be a fine, folksy time getting to know the families and townsfolk sheltering there with them, if not for the quarrelsome Resoundant preacher who’s seems intent on finding fault with everything and every one. On the fourth night in, and with no signs of the storm clearing up anytime soon, The preacher is murdered, leaving the party with an Agatha-Chrsitie style mystery to solve. There’s also the added threat that if the culprit isn’t found and the Resoundant find out, there’s a good chance that the enclave will come under threat of some more retributive members of the faith.
The belltowers of Hallowtoll are a wonder all unto themselves, with families and priests alike competing to see who can built the biggest, grandest, and loudest tower in their region. Older towers are often left to crumble as newer projects capture the attention of their patrons, creating a warren of urban dungeons rife for exploration. Likewise, all this fevered building is likely to attract the attention of certain strange forces of architecture that come to dwell within the abandoned geometries.
History: The source of the gods ire is the Olgracian dominion, a state over two millennia gone that none the less managed to offend the gods so bad that the heavens still havent forgiven them. The Olgrac were a proud people who worshiped a god of forge and field, and so had a surging, well armed populace that they used to subdue their neighbors into vassaldom. This was typical for just about any empire through history, but what made the Olgrac different was their habit of taking home the statues and idols of their neighbor’s gods in chains to represent their defeat, and throwing the priests of defeated nations into their forges to create weapons infused with divine magic.
Needless to say, the other gods didn’t like this, and collectively summoned a windstorm of such magnitude that it leveled the Olgracian capital, blew out the priest-eating forges like a candle, and ripped the mostly-innocent forgegod into so many pieces that not even their name is remembered to this day. The storm raged for a century, scouring the dominion from the earth and providing such a good deterant that just about everyone stayed away from the Stormgraven plains until a few centuries prior to the present day.
The forge-god is not dead, but scattered, ripped asunder into a number of aspects that subtly long to be reunited. Once contemplative and mostly peiceful, the forge-god now has a desire to revenge himself on the other gods, and will seek to rebuild the Olgrac dominion using the Resoundant as their new chosen people, coopting their faith and their resentment against their exile for its own ends.
Here’s some idea for some aspects:
An ever-burning ember of creativity and skill, which has come into the possession of the master of one of the Hallowtoll Bellfoundes. the master’s mind is now full of ambition and drive, and bells worked in fire of this ember whisper the forgegod’s influence to those that hear them. The forgemaster also has cannons on the brain, and is testing out various designs.
A mummified hand and forearm found in a ruin. which points the way towards great treasures of the old empire. Currently in possession of a scavenger band that’s gone full bandit, gathering other outlaws to itself and following the “relic’s” direction for even greater plunder. Unbekonwsned to any of them, they also happen to be gathering weapons and artifacts of the old empire that are important for the forgegod.
A scarred stone, sheer enough on one side to be used as a grand table, that gives the lands surrounding it bounty and fertility. A secret circle of elders among the surrounding farmer enclaves know the secret of the stone, and meet to sacrifice troublesome members of their groups or unmissed outsiders upon it to ensure its gifts, buring the bodies in the earth around it. On this makeshift altar the other aspects must be gathered, at which point it will crack, and the forgegod’s new body will walk free.