Thursday, May 30, 2013

Hermits and More

People like tables. I want people to like me. Therefore, I made some tables.

You have just stumbled onto a(n)...
1. Cave
The PCs stumble onto a small cave. Likely it reeks of the presence of a hermit, though perhaps he's a cleanly old fellow. Either way, this cavern is somewhat enticing and made up a little better than those that belong to, you know, bears.

2. Ruin
This ruin isn't the dangerous type, it's the very badly destroyed type. There are a few broken pillars, shattered walls, those kinds of things. If there are still any standing buildings, the hermit probably lives in one of those. If there aren't, he might just sleep on the ground or have a little tent.

3. Old shrine
Not a proper temple and not a ruin, this is simply an eikon, an altar, and some surrounding architecture. The hermit probably shelters behind it and eats up the offerings and takes the money people leave.

4. Empty temple
Once a temple, now a mostly in-tact wind-haunted ruin. There may be deeper parts, darker parts that the hermit doesn't visit. He may have the key to the crypts, or knowledge of the secret word that opens the inner doors... or maybe he just has an agreement with the local kobolds that he gets to keep any shinies on the corpses of the travelers he lures inside.

5. Cottage
This hermit is industrious. A cottage not marked anywhere on the map is his abode, and he probably pays no tax of any kind.

6. Grove
Just a grove, with no structures save for perhaps the hermit's tent.

7. Hollowed-out tree trunk
This hermit lives in a log or a trunk in the woods. He's probably skittish and likely to hide there when the PCs come tromping about.

8. Waterfall
Really, a waterfall could be combined with any of the previous entries.

You can see some (1d4) signs of habitation...
1. Bones
Not human bones—unless they are. Usually, though, these are things like chicken bones and the discarded leavings of whatever the hermit ate. Unless kobolds ate them. And the hermit. Is he even here? Maybe we better get going.

2. An archa
A chest out in the open. Probably doesn't have anything good in it. Maybe some dried fruit or a decanter of beer he gleaned from his last trip to town.

3. A tent
This might be where the hermit lives, it might be his smokehouse, or it might simply be to store things that would otherwise get wet. Probably shouldn't go poking around in it though. I mean, what if he comes back? Aw hells, he's not coming back, let's go.

4. A fire pit
Well, there was certainly someone here. Look, they dug that fire-pit and everything. Should we stay? I just don't want to get stabbed in the neck with a sharpened length of wood.

5. Some stakes
Well, clearly someone is trying to mark his territory. Maybe they have skulls on 'em. Maybe they're human skulls—or maybe not. Either way, this guy isn't that eager for company. You know, if he has trouble with intruders, maybe there's some money to be made.

6. A number of cooking utensils
Oh hey, these aren't sticks after all, they're spits! And this knife is definitely for cooking. Who just leaves their things lying around like this?

7. A stack of wood
Huh, a hermit chopping wood? That means he must have an axe...

8. A bucket of water
I wonder where he got this. We need to refill our water skins. Now the real question... travel directly to the source or just skim some here...

The hermit who lives here dresses in...
1. Rags
Oh hey, he's just a guy living out in the wild.

2. The ruined vestments of a high priest
Hmm... This fella is either a disgraced cleric or he murdered someone for those clothes. Maybe he's gods-touched? Sounds like someone to stay away from. No, hey, we're alright we don't need to join you for dinner!

3. Tattered armor
Nothing like a gruff old man covered in piecemeal armor. I wonder where he got it. Those things don't look like they go together. Is that blood on his spaulder?

4. Nothing
OH! Hey now! C'mon! That's not...! Hm!

5. Horse-hair garments
Penitence. For what, I wonder?

6. A robe of undyed wool
Well, he seems ok for a crazy woodsman.

7. Leathers
You know what leather armor says to me? It says peasant. Or murderer.

8. Soiled robes
He really needs to wash these things.

He's a hermit because...
1. He's insane
Gods touched, yes. He can't focus on you. He mumbles. Maybe he drools. He might speak in tongues. What the hell did we come out to see this guy for anyway?

2. He's holy
Well, this guy might see visions, but he's clearly all there. Hey, he might still have access to his divinity! Maybe he can patch us up...

3. He's holy AND insane
He can do magic, but he's lost his mind. I'm not sure how to feel about this. The Gods clearly move through him, but they move in ways that have broken him.

4. He's a survivalist
Just doesn't want to follow the social code, eh? I think we can all get behind that, can't we boys? Ha, yeah, we like this guy. Or maybe not. Maybe we're the law. This guy might be dangerous.

5. He's secretly a sage
This guy looks and sounds like a smartypants, regardless of the wilderness setting. Perhaps he can help us solve some of our problems.

6. He's secretly a wizard
Now wait a minute. I saw that book over there. And I see you keep rolling that little bit of guano between your fingers. Now, is this guy crazy... or a powerful wizard? We'd better figure that out quick.

7. He killed someone
He seems nice!

8. He killed a LOT of people
Wow, he really wants us to rest in his camp! What could go wrong?


  1. I have come over and checked out a few posts on this blog when you've promoted them on G+, but this one got me chuckling so much that you are now on my RSS feed! Cheers!!!

    1. Many thanks for your patronage, and I hope the forthcoming posts live up to my Most Excellent Hermit List!

  2. You forgot:

    Lives in a giant cauldron
    Lives atop a carved pillar
    Lives in the hollowed-out skull of some huge beast

    1. Did I forget... or am I saving up for an Expanded Most Excellent Hermit List? (I forgot, but NOW I'm saving up)

  3. I like your posts. And I like tables. Win-win.