Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Unique Encounters: Travelers

Say, what are those travelers or laborers or peasants on your encounter list doing when they're encountered? There are lots of things for medieval travelers to be doing on the road. The key is knowing a few of them so you can give your setting that good old Medieval Feel.

What are the travelers doing?
1. Carrying life-sized plaster holy eikons to their hometown
2. Beating the brush with clubs and staves, searching for a lost mule or donkey
3. Spread out on the grass with their supper, willing to share wine and rumors
4. Fighting off goblins in a frantic melee
5. Filling their water at a nearby stream or river
6. Sitting and listening to a traveling musician (who may know some local rumors or even news of abroad)
7. Sparring with quarterstaves
8. Herding animals towards their town
9. Chopping wood in a small grove
10. On their way to worship at a shrine or coming from worship (being led by a priest of a random denomination)
11. Performing a sacred pilgrimage, led by 2d4 priests, processing around a mobile altar or relic
12. Watching two knights in a judicial duel
13. Hunting sparrows with slings
14. Beating the bounds of their town
15. Building a shrine in the wild with the direction of 1d6+2 priests
16. Performing a marriage in a field
17. A noble hunting party composed of 1d8 nobles, each with a retinue of 3d4 attendants, 2d12+4 beaters, and a host of chefs and falconers
18. 1d4 nobles out for a ride
19. Celebrating a local feast day, eating at tables set up in a field
20. Building a fire for a nighttime revel


  1. Pretty good list. I also like the stumbling on to merchants. To use this a random table I might make the more mundane people most of the d20 then have some sub tables. But these ARE great seed ideas.

    1. Yeah, I was envisioning this as a unique encounter subtable, but a subtable of a subtable is probably more appropriate due to the very specific nature of the encounters. And thanks!