View Full Version : DMG 3.x Generating Cities and Towns Help

2007-06-18, 12:09 PM
Salvete omnes!

I am currently planing on having some PCs spend some time in a metropolis of considerable size for an extended duration but I've never used 3.x's system for generating the population before and the second to last bit of it, Total Characters of each class is a bit puzzling to me. I usually just customize it arbitrarily based on whatever my adventure needs are but I feel that this time it is more important.

I am hoping that this is just me missing something obvious, as per my usual modus operandi but I can't seem to figure out how to use the community modifier and highest level local charts. Do I roll my community modifier and apply it to only the classes I want that have significant high level characters? What if I am rolling a metropolis, for example, and have multiple community modifiers?

If someone could explain this to be simply I'd really appreciate it.

2007-06-18, 12:54 PM
Well first thing is that for your truly significants. Your plot charaters. You can have them fall outside this system. IIRC the book gives the example of a high level wizard in a podunk town.

What the DMG city generation does for you is give you a good baseline of what level charaters one should expect from that size city, and how many. If your talking about a true Metropolis will almost always be the largest city in the area and thus will have many of the main temples of the more orginised churches. Therefore you need a lot of fairly high level clerics. Such a city would also have a couple of theives guilds plus some independant contractors. So you need all those rogues. ect. ect.

SO heres whatcha do. Make all the plot charaters you want. Then save all the randomly generated guys for when your players start asking logical questions like:

What the highest level cleric of X, I can find?

I want to rob a house; can you tell me about the different noblemen in this city? Oh, and whose permission should I ask first?

Is their a wizard who can craft my armor of XYZ in this city?

Not to mention random encounters. Remember in city adventuring encounters should be harder because the charaters can always rest. So the high level NPCs can be a godsent.

hope that helps.

Saithis Bladewing
2007-06-18, 12:55 PM
Uhm...I think you roll for all classes except for those that, you, as a DM, want to omit from the city. For example, in an lawful evil highly religious city, you might rule that no paladin characters exist (unless you decided to use paladins of tyranny).

I don't have my DMG on me at the moment, but I'm fairly certain you roll the thing and then add the community modifier to all the classes. I don't know. Ignore me, I haven't touched that section in nigh on a year and a half.

2007-06-18, 02:16 PM
As indicated, there are two ways to approach this. Randomisation and Intelligent Design (to steal a term).

Randomisation: As it stands in my 3.0 DMG (maybe it's different in 3.5), you roll for each Class and add the Community Modifier (four times for each and +12 in the case of a Metropolis) to find the highest level PC Classes

Barbarian - 1D4 + 12 (Average 14)
Bard - 1D6 + 12 (Average 15)
Cleric - 1D6 + 12 (Average 15)
Druid - 1D6 + 12 (Average 15)
Fighter - 1D8 + 12 (Average 16)
Monk - 1D4 + 12 (Average 14)
Paladin - 1D3 + 12 (Average 13)
Ranger - 1D3 + 12 (Average 13)
Rogue - 1D8 + 12 (Average 16)
Sorcerer - 1D4 + 12 (Average 14)
Wizard - 1D4 + 12 (Average 14)

Then, for each one, you half the level, rounding up in some cases but not others for some reason (see the example), then double the numbers and repeat.

Metropolis Example: (1 x Fighter 16), (2 x Fighter 8), (4 x Fighter 4), (8 x Fighter 2), (16 x Fighter 1) - four times

This gives you fairly random results. Much wiser to build it to your own preferences. Try using A Magical Medieval Society: Western Europe (http://www.xrpshop.citymax.com/catalog/item/3906392/3605517.htm).

2007-06-18, 06:19 PM
First of all, many thanks to all. Secondly, Let me show you my example just for clarities sake:

I am building a metropolis with four community modifiers: 15, 24, 20 & 12. I roll for highest level character in the community once for each community modifier. Starting with Adept at the top of the chart I roll 18, 23, 20 and 12. I am not going to assume that there are any level 21+ characters in the community so roll two becomes a 20. Each number then represents an individual of the desired levels then determining how many more people of said class around is as follows:

A) 18th level Adept / 2 9th level adepts / 4 4th level adepts / 8 2nd level adepts.
B) 20th level Adept / 2 10th level adepts / 4 5th level adepts / 8 2rd level Adepts
C) As B
D) 12 level Adept / 2 6th level Adepts / 4 3rd level Adepts

I do not calculate level one characters because there is a set percentile of commoners, experts, aristocrats and adepts otherwise in the populace but would half/double again in the case of PC classes.

Sound correct?

2007-06-18, 06:29 PM
Essentially, that looks okay to me. the only thing I would say is to watch out for the 'rounding up and rounding down' aspects. Though usually you round down in D&D, for some reason the example in the DMG shows that 5/2 = 3, but 3/2 = 1. Very odd. So, A and B could potentially use slightly different progressions. [i.e. 9/2 = 4 or 5, 5/2 = 2 or 3, etc...]

The weakness of this system is that it often leaves huge gaps between levels, so, for instance, you have no Adepts who are Level 7, 11 or Levels 13-17. Doesn't really matter, but there you go.

2007-06-18, 06:35 PM
Ah, computers (http://www.aarg.net/~minam/towns.cgi?size=0&seed=). Use a random generation utility to get your base (copy the seed into the Seed field to get the same city over and over - this lets you bookmark it), and add plot-characters as needed (they're not listed, as they aren't radom).

If, for whatever reason, a particular class wouldn't be overly welcome, simply don't include them / apply a negative level adjustment to all of them (and remove any that would be too low level - so that in a highly civilized Metropolis, rather than their being 2 16th level barbarians, 1 15th level barbarian, 1 13th level barbarian, 1 8th level barbarian, and a lot of lower level barbarians, there's 2 8th level barbarians, 1 7th level barbarian, and 1 5th level barbarian (Barbarian Adjusment -8)) / or whatever, as appropriet.

2007-06-18, 07:13 PM
Speaking of generating cities and towns, I seem to remember an online generator that would give you a map with the numbers. Has anyone else seen this site, or am I imagining things?

Black Hand
2007-06-18, 07:16 PM
Speaking of generating cities and towns, I seem to remember an online generator that would give you a map with the numbers. Has anyone else seen this site, or am I imagining things?

I believe I do. I added the links into my sig some time ago. they're very handy. (although for June 18th the site is being worked on and is down until the 19th)