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Author Topic: Hex Crawl/World Building 'Systems'  (Read 777 times)

LiferGamer

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Hex Crawl/World Building 'Systems'
« on: June 25, 2020, 05:40:22 PM »
My ongoing 5th edition campaign has a strong explore the Wilderness component, and I enjoy the hexcrawl.  What's in the DMG looking like a cut and paste from the first edition DMG, it's pretty decent but I'm looking at options.

I'm checking to see if I still have my printed how to build your Greyhawk hex by hex article  (I think by Nitescreed?) On the old Greytalk mailing list...

And if I recall correctly in my dtrpg library I have a D30 based system.

That said I hear good things about Dungeonworld and ACKS in this vein.

Any other systems you all can recommend?   Pros and Cons?
Your Forgotten Realms was my first The Last Jedi.

If the party is gonna die, they want to be riding and blasting/hacking away at a separate one of Tiamat's heads as she plummets towards earth with broken wings while Solars and Planars sing.

LiferGamer

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Hex Crawl/World Building 'Systems'
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2020, 11:30:46 PM »
Confirmed:  d30 Sandbox Companion
From New Big Dragon Games Unlimited: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/124392/d30-Sandbox-Companion

I'm re-visiting it.
Your Forgotten Realms was my first The Last Jedi.

If the party is gonna die, they want to be riding and blasting/hacking away at a separate one of Tiamat's heads as she plummets towards earth with broken wings while Solars and Planars sing.

S'mon

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« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2020, 04:29:30 AM »
I do a kind of drill down then build up thing - world map, nation map at ca 8 or 10 miles/hex, then often a low level map at 2 miles/hex. I seed the area around the PCs with adventures/encounters in more or less concentric circles of generally ascending difficulty/challenge. I use the system's encounter tables to help fill in blanks.

One big thing I do is focus a lot on major NPCs; something a lot of hexcrawl design stuff ignores. But the NPCs are often the most dynamic element.

Once enough material is created, I make a rumour table, usually for the local area, usually reviewed monthly. A D6 table works well IME. Whenever the PCs move to a new locale I'll look to make a new rumour table.

So eg for my Primeval Thule Mini Six game https://simonsprimevalthule.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-valley-of-scorn-palace-of-silver.html

Initial rumour table for Orelustrah based off the one in B3:

Rumours - Gulluvia, ca M1 2215 AR
1. A fierce young female fighter called Aliegha has been seen in a few of the neighbouring villages. Many folks say that she carries a sword of ruby and is accompanied by two dwarves and a cleric. Some believe that she might be a descendant of the Silver Princess.
2. The evil Baroness of Gulluvia, Lady D'hmis, has offered a reward to anyone who can bring to her the ruby known as My Lady's Heart. Lady D'hmis claims to be the heir to the treasure as she is the only living descendant of the Silver Princess.
3. Strange beings have been seen emerging from the Scorned Valley to raid Gulluvia. These creatures, say survivors, have three heads, three arms and three legs. So far five people have been killed by the horrible beasts. Farmers complain that their cattle, chickens and other farm animals keep disappearing, and they are blaming the disappearances on these creatures.
4. A rich treasure is hidden in the Palace of the Silver Princess. This treasure is said to be even more valuable than My Lady's Heart.
5. Lady Argenta is still alive, and living with a band of fellow elves that rescued her from the warrior in silver and blue armor. It is said that she is still as fair as she was nearly 500 years ago.
6. A great priest called Cathrandamus is roaming the country aiding the sick and defending the just. It is said that he cares not for riches, but only for spiritual gain.
7. Half of the palace was destroyed by one of Argenta's magic users when he accidentally mixed the wrong magical components together.


Current rumour table for Thiria Keep/Barony of Tallas:
1. A sorcerous tower on Sinking Isle holds a diamond as big as a man's head.
2. Cultists have been raiding the road between Tallas and Thiria in service to a Chaotic god.
3. The Licheway of the old Sandlanders west of Skyreach Tower has been attracting adventurers in search of treasure, but sinister Deep Ones have been seen in the seas offshore.
4. They say the Sorcerer Tizun Thane is dead, and now strange Night Things have been emerging from his mansion-fortress in the mountains, beyond the Wilds of Chendu-Skar. The villages south of the Tith River are in terror, and Lord Borealis of Tallas has offered a reward to halt their depredations.
5. Veshni Ural the Queen of Nith seeks heroes to find the Lost City of Cynadacea, home of her royal Atlantean ancestors, long believed lost beneath the Tjokren ice.
6. The High Priest of Nergal in Nith has been found dead - drained of blood!

Whenever the PCs talk to NPCs they are likely to pick up rumours, selected or rolled randomly.
My 5e and Mini Six Primeval Thule games blog:
https://simonsprimevalthule.blogspot.com
My Forgotten Realms 4e & 5e games blog: https://frloudwater.blogspot.com

Omega

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« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2020, 09:44:19 AM »
Keep in mind that AD&D's wilderness gen system is mostly meant to fill in the blanks when the PCs wander off the established map and the DM just wants a quick idea of whats there.

It can generate a full map but its going to look a bit scattershot.

Here is one I created back in 2014 using AD&Ds system just to see what would get. This is before rolling for habitations. On average out of the 256 hexes that map would likely end up with around 27 locales. From cities to individual dwellings to various ruins.



Judges Guild way back came out with their own version of the wilderness gen system. Havent really had a good look at yet.

Warpiglet

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« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2020, 10:58:15 AM »
Great stuff.

I miss emergent play.  Seems like over the years we have gotten too into more linear modules etc.

The real fun was a weird happening or situation that happens with our exploration.
AD&D 1e, D&D 5e

S'mon

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« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2020, 11:10:13 AM »
My approach to hexploration - first take or make a nation-level map and add hex grid, here 8 miles/hex:



Then take a section and create a small scale map, here 2 miles/hex:



I populate the maps with adventure sites, initially focusing on the local map & lower level stuff, with higher level threats further away. So the 2 miles/hex map has stuff like 30 orcs in a lair, where the 8 mile/hex map has a level 18 Demonist in Dun-Tharos with legions of undead and evil Men.
My 5e and Mini Six Primeval Thule games blog:
https://simonsprimevalthule.blogspot.com
My Forgotten Realms 4e & 5e games blog: https://frloudwater.blogspot.com

LiferGamer

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« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2020, 11:25:03 AM »
Quote from: S'mon;1136410
I do a kind of drill down then build up thing - world map, nation map at ca 8 or 10 miles/hex, then often a low level map at 2 miles/hex. I seed the area around the PCs with adventures/encounters in more or less concentric circles of generally ascending difficulty/challenge. I use the system's encounter tables to help fill in blanks.

One big thing I do is focus a lot on major NPCs; something a lot of hexcrawl design stuff ignores. But the NPCs are often the most dynamic element.

Whenever the PCs talk to NPCs they are likely to pick up rumours, selected or rolled randomly.


That's really nice, and good info.  I'm definitely all for people driving adventure, NPC-centric turning it into an organic story based on their back and forth interactions.

Nice maps.  I was thinking 24 or 30 mile/6 mile map and have a cool new toy that has really got me wanting to do this:
Your Forgotten Realms was my first The Last Jedi.

If the party is gonna die, they want to be riding and blasting/hacking away at a separate one of Tiamat's heads as she plummets towards earth with broken wings while Solars and Planars sing.

estar

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« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2020, 12:04:16 PM »
I written some material on the subject

How to make a fantasy sandbox

Narmer

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« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2020, 05:46:49 PM »
Quote from: estar;1137205
I written some material on the subject

How to make a fantasy sandbox

"Some" material?  :)

LiferGamer

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« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2020, 06:04:50 PM »
Well you've all given me a lot to chew on and I thank you.
Your Forgotten Realms was my first The Last Jedi.

If the party is gonna die, they want to be riding and blasting/hacking away at a separate one of Tiamat's heads as she plummets towards earth with broken wings while Solars and Planars sing.

Tyberious Funk

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« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2020, 11:59:48 PM »
Quote from: Omega;1136444
Keep in mind that AD&D's wilderness gen system is mostly meant to fill in the blanks when the PCs wander off the established map and the DM just wants a quick idea of whats there.

It can generate a full map but its going to look a bit scattershot.

Here is one I created back in 2014 using AD&Ds system just to see what would get. This is before rolling for habitations. On average out of the 256 hexes that map would likely end up with around 27 locales. From cities to individual dwellings to various ruins.



Judges Guild way back came out with their own version of the wilderness gen system. Havent really had a good look at yet.

The format of your map looks really familiar... I used to have a hex-mapping software many eons ago that made similar maps, but I can't find it again.  What did you draw your map with?
 

LiferGamer

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« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2020, 12:59:58 AM »
Looks like (or at least can be done with) Worldographer/Hexographer.
Your Forgotten Realms was my first The Last Jedi.

If the party is gonna die, they want to be riding and blasting/hacking away at a separate one of Tiamat's heads as she plummets towards earth with broken wings while Solars and Planars sing.

briansommers

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« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2020, 09:24:10 AM »
I'm looking for a hex crawl that would be for solitaire play. One person only.

I want a blank hex map and you begin by rolling what are in the six adjacent hexes around you and go from there.

I want something where I can build a map all around me with encounters based on the terrain I'm in.

Not sure on the scale.

dkabq

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« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2020, 09:15:38 PM »
Quote from: estar;1137205
I written some material on the subject

How to make a fantasy sandbox


Do you have any plans to do specific posts for steps 28 to 34?