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Old October 15th, 2015, 08:27 PM
Okay, in the real world, "unsituated locations" would be a contradiction in terms. But in sandbox/open-world styles of campaigning, it is very helpful to have locations, especially villages stocked up that you can provide to players.

My home-brew campaign world is huge. I will never have every village and hamlet mapped out. For those times when I need to have some detail to a village, I like to keep some ready. Same idea as having stock NPCs ready to use when needed.

I'm curious how others are organizing such "places."

My current thinking is, I have a village, with some back story, NPCs, a map, descriptions of the main buildings, and some hooks. Everything is written so that it can be dropped anywhere within a certain region.

I might create location topics for some of the more interesting locations in the village with these locations being contained by the community topic.

I will create a number of "Other Lists", such as "Villages-Menskriki", "Villages-Rasane", "Orc Strongholds", "Villages-Any Human, etc. I select the appropriate "Other Lists" topic to be the container for my drop-in village.

What I've not decided yet, is whether I keep all these drop-in community "other lists" in the "Other Lists" category or if I file them under the appropriate "Region:Political" category (e.g. put the "Villages-Menskriki" topic under the "Kingdom of Menskriki" topic.

Currently, I'm leaving them all in the "Other Lists" category since it is less filing busy work and during the game I always know where to look. Also, in a pinch I may still steal a Menskriki village and re-purpose as a Rasane village with the help of random-name generators.

Interested in learning how others are handling this.

RW Project: Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition homebrew world
Other Tools: CampaignCartographer, Cityographer, Dungeonographer, Evernote
MNBlockHead is offline   #1 Reply With Quote
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Old October 15th, 2015, 08:54 PM
Well, to be honest - I don't have these. The only thing that comes close is a couple of lists over generic NPCs (goone wannabe, goone seasoned, goone veteran, soldier recruit, ...).

I would put the lists of Villages-Menskriki under the region of Menskriki (if I understand your system correctly). If you use a view for that region alone, you would have them available. But then again; you steal from other regions from time to time, so it makes sense to have them all under the same container.

I would probably end up placing them under Other, well out of the way and that way I surely wouldn't accidentally use them.

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Vargr is offline   #2 Reply With Quote
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Old October 16th, 2015, 12:46 PM
If I did this, and I might I need some generic farming villages, I'd keep them completely out of my hierarchy of actual geographic locations until I assigned it a real place name and location. I'd likely put them in an Other List just so I'd know where to go looking when I needed one.
kbs666 is offline   #3 Reply With Quote
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Old October 18th, 2015, 07:36 AM
I think it will depend on your design system. If you want extra villages with thematic elements of a particular geographic/political/religious/etc. area, then I would tag them as such and keep them wherever makes sense to you. If they are just generic hamlets/villages with no real identifying features (other than those you can add at the last minute), then just putting them in Other will work just fine. Tagging them at "generic" is still something I would do too.

I do think that having them all in "other" makes the most sense for the way I operate. No accidental use as Vargr mentioned. It probably goes without saying but I also wouldn't put any links in place until I needed the village to reduce the chance of accidental use even more..
Gord is offline   #4 Reply With Quote
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Old October 19th, 2015, 01:43 AM
Hmm, this is not an easy question. It depends how thematic you settlement is.

I could imagine two different sets of custom villages:

1) Truly custom - no thematic flair. I don't use theese, because I find it not very usefull. Because something like that, I improvise. The real work for villages is, do weave local context and culture into it. Therefore, I have no real "cutom villages", see 2:

2) Unlocated Villages. For a couple of villages, I have just a couple of sentences as a description. I only write down, what makes a settlement special from others, the rest can be easily improvised when needed. I locate thoose already in the right region in the location tree, but I don't put a marker on the map. (My world location structure is as follows: Continents, Regions, [Subregions], [Settlement Regions], Settlements/Locations.

Two examples:

Karsuki (N Village) - Magical Flying Desert Fortress. A powerfull order of Mages use it as base to investigate old artefacts in the desert. Since I use Pathfinder, I also wrote me a small application so I can compose city stat blocks in a very fast manner. Therefore, I also write down the modifiers: Magical, Insular, Pious.

Njangari (NG Small Town) - Located in the center of the town, a big, 3m high runestone attracts people to pray for luck and health. Modifiers: Insular

I only prepare villages, that have a high chance of beeing visited. I don't restrict my player in what they can do and what they want to visit, but if they want to travel far distances, I ask them to tell me before, so I can prepare enough details. This agreement helps me, to provide a lot of cool details and fluff, and they are still free to do whatever they want (whithin flexibel boundaries).

Last edited by Decrayer; October 19th, 2015 at 01:49 AM.
Decrayer is offline   #5 Reply With Quote
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Old October 19th, 2015, 02:15 PM
Thank you all for your thoughts and suggestions. What I'm doing for now is putting them all under an "Other" topic. I am using several topics. Right now I just have a topic for truly generic locations and several other topics for realm-specific locations. If I want to further organize by certain themes, I would likely just use another "other" topic, or I will just create a table in the other topic giving some more information and themes.

I find that this allows for the easiest and quickest lookup of a village, hamlet, etc. I don't have so many that I need to run tag searches to find appropriate locations.

These locations are fairly flushed out. They have maps, a few paragraphs of history, rumor and adventure-hook tables, descriptions of important NPCs, etc. I'm not trying to map out and name every village the party goes through, so I'm not trying to have a large list of villages and play out a hex-by-hex exploration. We only meet one a month and the players want to get into an adventure, they don't want to spend the entire eight hours trying to explore every mile of a 100-mile hex.

Basically, if the party deviates from a major storyline, I want to be able to roll with it by having some locations and side adventures I can drop in. For now, my current system, as simplistic as it is, seems to be working well.

RW Project: Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition homebrew world
Other Tools: CampaignCartographer, Cityographer, Dungeonographer, Evernote
MNBlockHead is offline   #6 Reply With Quote

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