Tome of Adventure Design
The more I work with Matt Finch’s Tome of Adventure Design, the more I like it.
In fact, I’ve been meaning to review it. Another time, I’m busy right now.
In fact, I’m busy messing with the tables and how they interact. Some time ago I posted a list of 500 Random Old-School Adventure Sites that I’d randomly generated (using scripts, of course) using tables based off those in Tome of Adventure Design.
The book originally presented Table 1-1a: Locations (Overview). One column for the d100 roll, four more for content. Roll four times, picking from each column in turn:
||Feature (first word)
||Feature (second word)
||Abbey of the
||Aerie of the
||Asylum of the
… and so on. Dead easy, and it gets acceptable results. There is more, however.
I’m always on the lookout for adventure ideas, and in 2010 Engine Publishing (the publishing arm of Gnome Stew) released Eureka: 501 Adventure Plots to Inspire Game Masters.
This is a good book to have, and I’ve got the physical book on my list of books to buy.
This is a tricky review for me to write, though. The book delivers, in spades, what it aims to. After having finally read the book, though, I find that what it aims to do does not align well with how I design scenarios. I do not wish for my biases to affect the review, so will try to identify explicitly where they align and are in conflict.
Seekers of Lore
Now that the Microscope session is complete, time to move into the Lexicon phase.
This should be much simpler, really. The Seekers of Lore Obsidian Portal site there is a wiki. The front page of the wiki has a link to instructions on using the wiki, how to create pages, and edit them. Obsidian Portal uses a markup language called Textile, and it’s pretty straightforward.
It is now January 12. We had originally planned twelve week-long turns, starting from the beginning of January and taking us to nearly the end of March. If we start the first turn today, twelve weeks would run to the first weekend of April (turns end Saturday midnight, so the last turn would end April 5).
As described in the proposal,
- One turn per week, for three months, for a total of twelve turns.
Probably kick off at the beginning of January and run through the end of March. Starting January 12 and running to April 5, now that we’ve done the Microscope session.
- Turn ends Saturday midnight (Pacific time, since that’s where I live… and Saturday night I’m usually in a game until 9:00-10:00 PM Pacific time).
- Posts are live by Sunday morning and ready for review.
- New topics identified or ‘reserved’ by Tuesday midnight, if we want to avoid collisions. We might not; two Scholars duking it out academically could be entertaining… but it might work better as a special event thing.
- At least two articles per week.
- One article is net new and is whatever is of interest to the Scholar. If you want to write about the sacrificial magics of the Shawloon savages, despite there really being nothing else about the Shawloon in the wiki, or of sacrificial magic anyway, go ahead. It’s a bit of obscure knowledge and it seeds some ideas.
- At least one article that expands on, adds to, or otherwise builds off an existing article — written by someone else. If you talk about the sacrificial magics of the Shawloon savages, I might pick up on the Shawloon element and start talking about the geography of their homeland and just why they are savages, someone else might explore sacrificial magics across the realm.
- Note that graphical elements (maps, pictures, etc.) are entirely welcome as well, but not required.
- Each article is signed by the Scholar who wrote it (though it would be cool if the Scholar were evident on reading).
In order to edit pages in the wiki, you will need to be a member of the Seekers of Lore campaign. Everyone who took part in the Microscope session already is, anyone else who would like to join will need to contact me so I can add you.
Seekers of Lore
Yesterday we ran the Microscope session for the Seekers of Lore campaign. All in all I’m very pleased with how things turned out, and I think we’ve got some very good material to use for the Lexicon session to follow.
A few of us would have liked to have continued, but most of us had other commitments and we wrapped up after four rounds.
I would like to thank again Andrew, David, Levi, Lowell, and Grey for coming out and taking part. We ended up with something I think is very, very good.
Next step… Lexicon.
Seekers of Lore
Andrew was Lens for our last turn, and looks into the knowledge and wisdom of the world.
Age of Gods, Round 4
Focus: The World Thinks and Speaks
Period: Sifting of the Plane [dark] [Andrew, between By the Grace of the Gods and Rise of the Tribes]
The gods decided how matter and energy interacted, and what would have sentience.
Event: The Council of Stones [dark] [Andrew, during Sifting of the Plane]
The stones were wise, and carried on their skins and in their hearts the history of the plane. They could murmur to one another through the ground. The gods confided in them.
When the mortals learned to read the stones, then Alfeur, Guardian of the World Wall, concentrated the minds of the stones into leaders in a great circle. The stones expected to be rewarded for their faithful memory and service, but with a heavy heart, Alfeur tore mindfulness from them.
Remembering the stones, other gods meticulously worked memory out of everything that lived long enough to build up memory that mattered (namely the forests and the seas.) Mortals were protected only by their short lifespans.