Thursday, June 9, 2022

A Return Trip (and Updated Tourist's Guide) to Griswall

When I shared my map interpretation with u/therealregalis, I noticed that they had also uploaded a few building layouts for select locations in Griswall, so I ganked them for possible incorporation into a revised edition of the town description. More on that below.

First of all, a couple of quick shout-outs and thanks.

First, Rosie and Adam discussed her contribution to Jackalope 2022, as well as my contribution to her prompt for creating six festivals for a community. The podcast episode is here: Gelatinous Cube. I'm glad that they appreciated the entries, especially one of the "bonus" festivals that they could envision dropping into their game. Their podcast focuses on creating encounters and scenarios.

Also, u/therealregalis mentioned that they used a faction tool I'd incorporated into my 2017 One Page Dungeon contest entry, and that is appreciated, as well. 

I don't know how much of my scribbling here sees the light of day, so it's always a pleasant surprise when something pops up in the wild.

Anyway, back to Griswall. I pulled up the layouts for the three locations: Manor-house, Inn, and Trader's Shop. I ended up not dropping them into the revision itself, as the floor plans and some interior features didn't quite work for me. However, I did update some elements of the general descriptions of the three locations to align a bit more with the layouts, but the general descriptions are similar to my original concepts.

But what I did do was flesh the area out a bit. u/therealregalis mentioned that they created the map in the style of the old blue-line module maps such as Village of Hommlet, and since I take after format of the occupant and locations from the old modules, it fits.

Things added. Although we don't have an area map, I treated this as an implied mini-hex, with possibilities of encounters in town or within a few selected radii. A few of the NPCs have some additional details. Then there is a rumors table, because of course there is. Some entries are trivial, some more substantial. Several point back to the NPCs, locations, and described setting, but plenty may be hearsay. And a random encounter table, because who doesn't like those. Might as well codify if/when a skeleton wanders through town while the PCs are having an ale at the inn. 

After I gave the writing a day to ruminate, I decided that I needed to flesh out (or skeleton out...) a fallen NPC mentioned in the town description and subsequently in the rumors. I just couldn't leave him (and his sword) as a loose end or vague arm-waving. And I added a chance that he will appear as an event or encounter.

And prettied it all up a bit with some public art, either from Wikimedia Commons or the Metropoitan Museum of Art, a couple of my standard go-tos for setting color pieces.

The Battle of Towton, Richard Caton Woodville

Ok, enough rambling. Time for a second visit to the Hamlet of Griswell.

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