Gygax 75 Week 2 - Plains of Eyes and Hands
This is part 2 of my ongoing struggle with the Gygax 75. You can check out part 1 here.
Week 2 of the Gygax 75 challenge requires making a map. I am not very good at maps. This is the best I could manage with the hexkit bundle I bought impulsively six months ago. The map shows the Plains of Eyes and Hands (also known as the Plains of Salt, or just the Plains), a sea of yellow grass and sparse, hard-leafed trees, where ancient beasts graze under the custodianship of Salt, the satellite-god which preserves and purifies. To the northeast lies a wetter lowland of moss and ferns, and at its center, the Ascendancy of Teal, an arcology.
Hexes are assumed to be ~24 km, or about half of what you can walk in a day if you're reasonably fit and the terrain is decent. The landscape is mostly yellow-ish grass and the occasional tree or bush, some of them bearing edible fruit. It's not terribly exciting. I might add a random terrain feature table at some point.
Points of Interest
- Hand of Salt - Mechanical angel the size of a bear. It appears wherever the will of Salt needs enforcing. Sick and mutated animals are culled. Demons are destroyed. Travellers not blessed by Salt may be killed or forcefully escorted out, depending on Salt's whims. Salt's sacred programming ensures there's always only 400 of these at a time, for reasons debated by priests and sages.
- Sabertooth Tiger - Either digesting it's last meal or looking for a new one. Very hard to spot. Its fallow coat blends in well with the surrounding grass.
- Travellers - 3d4, at least half of them trained and armed. They might be pilgrims, explorers, merchants, or sponge gatherers. Whatever the case, they'll probably be glad to meet someone who doesn't run on all fours or chase hipparions to death.
- Humans - 4d12, hunting, gathering, and playing as a group. Low rolls may indicate separate hunting parties. They are intelligent and nomadic, rarely staying in one place for an extended period of time. They're not an uncommon sight in arcologies, but many still choose to live in the environment they are uniquely adapted for.
- Mammoths - The largest animals found on the Plains. Live and travel in herds of d10. A result of 1 indicates an adult male. While not aggressive, some, especially lone males, can be territorial. They are incredibly dangerous when threatened, but succesfully killing one means providing weeks' worth of meat for your clan.
- Hipparions - Small horses with striped front halves. Commonly hunted by humans, Painted Men, and many non-sapient predators. Travel in herds of 2d12. Barring very unusual circumstances, they are unlikely to be dangerous.
- Painted Men - A pack of 2d6. Roll a d6 to find out more about them. They are: 1. Renegades and outcasts struggling to survive without the clan's support. 2-3. Younglings revelliing in their lack of parental supervision. Mischievious and proud, but not malicious. 4-6. Adult hunters procuring food or other resources.
- Lycaons - Smaller, less intelligent cousins of the Painted Men, roaming the Plains in packs of 2d6. They are opportunistic and always on the lookout for their next meal. They won't attack if they're not significantly outnumbering you, but you should watch your sick and wounded closely.
- Eyes of Salt - d20, perched on a nearby tree, sensors whirring with curiosity. These small angels are the most commonly encountered servants of Salt. They do little more than observe, although known enemies of Salt and disruptors of ecological balance should still be wary, as Eyes are perfectly capable of pointing a more dangerous Hand their way. Salt, being primarily a watcher and a custodian, disperses and maintains significantly more angels of this type than any other, a full ten thousand, if one was to trust the priests' analysis of sacred code.
- Megatherium - d4 giant ground sloths. Huge, majestic, and voracious, they spend most of their time eating grass or digging for roots with their claws. Although not aggressive, they do not take kindly to those who disturb their eating.
- Splinter of Timber - Timber is the only god not in the sky. When the Network split, it fell and fractured, but didn't die. Its Splinters roam the earth now, each one bound in a protective shell bearing an otherworldly visage and carried by vehicle powered with inscrutable technology. Timber respects no authority and accepts no border. It loves music, revelry and chaos. Each Splinter is accompanied by a loud and eclectic band of priests, ravers and vagabonds. They can afford to be loud and conspicuous, as the powerful weaponry Timber provides convinces all but the strongest and most dedicated angels to stay away.. This particular Splinter sits on a hoverbarge pulled by a festively-adorned (and deaf) mammoth. The accompanying procession is composed of 16+d20 miscreants.