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TRYING OUT THE ALEXANDRIAN’S URBANCRAWL SYSTEM: DESIGNING THE CITY OF JUNTIAL PART 5

Obligatory recap: I’ve read about a system for creating urbancrawls (similar to hexcrawls but set in a city) from The Alexandrian. I had also been enjoying the Sorcery! gamebooks by Steve Jackson and their strange magic setting. Enter this series of articles, where I use The Alexandrian’s urbancrawl system to design my own urbancrawl with a strange magic theme.

Links:

We left off last time with:

Here’s a recap of our layer list from way back in part 1 and a few notes/additions along the way:

Some additional thoughts I’ve been kicking around:

Levels: Since this is an “open world” game, such that it is, I’m a little worried about PCs wandering into locations/encounters etc… that are far more than they can handle. I want it to be possible, but not something that happens regularly. To deal with this, the DC to find points of interest will scale with the challenge it presents. This will include an additional bump if what they’re looking for is kill on sight (which doesn’t include that many items anyway).

Roster: While some layers will be carefully keyed with every item on them pre-made, others don’t need to be so meticulously planned. With a few planned points of interest, the rest of the layer can be handled by a roster of NPCs (some generic, some specific) and maybe some on the fly 5 room dungeons. Thus most layers will need at least one roster, and some several.

Random encounters: I want random encounters in the city. Most, if not all of the encounters here can be pulled from the rosters of the various layers with just some differences in the encounter list for each neighborhood based on which layers are active and which are common and uncommon there.

Contents: I want to be sure to include a variety of types of items on the layers list. It would be boring if say, everything on the bugs layer was just bugs to fight. Here are the basic categories I want to be sure to include:

So now I know what I’m making, and how I’m making it. It’s time to stop procrastinating and eat this elephant. So next time I’ll have a layer roughed out and we’ll go from there. Wish me luck!