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    Default Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    All new work taking place here!

    Not-As-Brief-As-I'd-Like Background
    This setting is designed for a mini (1st-7th level or so) sandbox(ish) campaign for new players to D&D 3.5. Basically, what that means is that I set out to make a world that allows for a broad range of adventures without being too big - wilderness exploration, dungeon crawls, political intrigue, stealth, murder mysteries - it can all be found in or near Badger's Hollow. I'm also trying to limit my house rules and other changes from normal D&D, so as to provide a fairly representative example of D&D. Whether or not I succeeded is another matter....

    I'm posting it here as an eventual player resource when I actually start a game in the world, and because this is something like the third time I've started working on this world, and posting it will (hopefully) finally force me to finish it. Feel free to steal borrow stuff, ask questions, poke me to post something new, point out typos, and whatever else you want to do.

    Overview
    This will get nifty flavor text at some point

    Basically, Badger's Hollow is a large town nestled in the wooded foothills of a mountain range, near to the pass through the mountains. In its heyday, there were a lot of traders coming to use the pass to reach the large dwarven mine on the other side (and pay the toll to use the pass) and to trade for the pelts that the hunters of Badger's Hollow provided. Lately, however, the town has fallen on hard times. First, the Deadwood, a mysterious section of forest characterized by dying trees and undead creatures, grew to include the main road to the town. This was "solved" by creating a detour - right through goblin territory, which the goblins weren't too happy about. Even facing goblin raids, traders were still willing to risk travel to Badger's Hollow. But then the dwarves mined too deep - as dwarves are prone to do - and broke through to something that should have remained buried. Within a short time, their settlement was gone, and soon the travelers through Badger's Hollow were, too. Since then, the town has been gradually declining.

    Now, things are even more unstable. The Lord Mayor, who had been keeping the town on its feet with careful management, has died and his daughter - although she tries to follow in her father's footsteps - doesn't have the political clout to stand up to the guilds, all of whom have their own vision for Badger's Hollow....

    To do:
    Teaser flavor text.
    Last edited by Savannah; 2011-11-27 at 05:15 PM.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Geography
    Quick-and-dirty map, which will be updated and eventually made all pretty:
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    Cosmology
    Most people are only vaguely aware of the cosmology, although they usually know a little bit about the fey realms. Most of this information is only known by those who study the planes.
    An explanation of planes can be found here.

    Standard Planes
    The material, transitive, and inner planes are the same as standard D&D.

    The outer planes are nearly the same as standard, however there are fewer and some are in slightly different spots in the cosmology. There are only nine planes, one for each alignment. The planes are as follows:
    Spoiler
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    Celestia - still LG.
    Bytopia - now NG.
    Ysgard - now CG.
    Mechanus - still LN.
    Outlands - still N.
    Limbo - still CN.
    Nine Hells - still LE.
    Carceri - now NE.
    Abyss - still CE.

    Since they’re virtually unchanged otherwise and unlikely to ever come up in the game, I’m not going to detail them further. Assume any outsiders from the missing planes have been reshuffled to whatever remaining plane is most appropriate.

    The biggest difference between this cosmology and the normal D&D cosmology is the demiplanes of the fey.

    Fey demiplanes
    A grove of ancient oaks; the bottom of a lake; a single tree, ten times the size of the largest tree in the mortal world; a forest meadow full of butterflies; a cluster of mushrooms on the bark of a log, the mushrooms the size of trees — the fey realms are universally beautiful and often strange places.
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    The fey realms are not particularly dangerous to a mortal traveler on their own, although the inhabitants may be far from friendly. The biggest difficulty a mortal traveler faces when visiting a fey realm is returning to their plane, as this is nearly impossible without the help of the Lord of the realm. An additional concern is that time in a fey realm flows strangely, and mortal visitors may return to the material plane to discover that no time at all or weeks have passed since they left. They fey seem unaffected by such matters, and some scholars speculate that the Lords can choose how much time passes in their realm.

    The Fey Lords
    Each fey realm is ruled by a Fey Lord. The Lords know everything that takes place within their realm and can control when mortals enter or exit their realm.

    Travel to the fey realms
    Fey and fey-kin may choose to step between the material plane and any nearby fey realms at will, and can bring a mortal along with them if they so choose.

    For mortals, reaching a fey realm is a much more random event. Most of the time, a mortal will enter a fey realm accidentally, by triggering a gate. The gates are called fey rings as they are always a perfect ring made of natural materials which resist disruption. The exact form varies, but typical fey rings are a perfect ring of white mushrooms, particularly lush grass, dead grass, or pebbles. The gates are usually fairly easy to spot, but some may be subtle. What causes a mortal to pass from the material plane to a fey realm can vary from simply stepping into the ring to sleeping a full night in the ring. The Lord of a realm can block mortals from entering through a gate, if he or she wishes.

    In addition to the fey rings, there are also fey paths. Like fey rings, fey paths are made of natural materials and resist disruption of their perfectly straight form. Typical fey paths are a perfectly straight line of particularly lush grass, pebbles, or plants that have been beaten down as if by many feet but which bear no signs of tracks. Fey paths are typically used by fey or fey-kin to travel from realm to realm, and therefore usually begin and end at fey rings. A mortal walking along a fey path will find that they travel more quickly than normal and do not tire, but risk finding that they have passed from the material plane to a fey realm at some point along their journey. For this reason, fey paths are usually avoided by travelers. Anyone who blocks or cuts a fey path risks the wrath of the fey who use it.

    Exiting a realm is tricky for mortals, and can generally only be done by the will of the Lord of the realm. For this reason, few people seek to enter a fey realm, and most actively seek to avoid entering a realm.

    Some spells allow a mortal to enter and exit a fey realm or block a fey from stepping into a realm, although this always infuriates the Lord of the affected realm or the trapped fey and so are often not worth the consequences.

    Mechanics
    The fey demiplanes, generally referred to as the fey realms, are small (generally no more than 10 miles across) demiplanes coterminous with the material plane. Usually, anyone who sets out to walk across the demiplane will find themselves back where they started, although a few demiplanes are bounded by a thick white mist that blocks all passage.


    To do:
    Geography and notable locations.
    Deadwood
    Goblin lands
    Lizardfolk lands
    Tower Watch
    Dwarven mine
    Naming everything
    Badger's Hollow itself.
    Political structure, especially guilds
    Locations of interest
    Deities.
    Finish map (once geography is finalized).
    History, both recent and ancient.
    Calendar.
    Last edited by Savannah; 2011-05-31 at 06:31 PM.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    PC Races
    The races here all differ at least a little from the standard races presented in the Player’s Handbook. In most cases, the change is minimal as I’m just tying them to this setting. However, the fluff for gnomes and the fluff and stats for the goblinoids have been changed extensively.
    (Remember, as well, that the following notes are all generalities, so it is quite possible to play a member of a race against the norm for that race and you may meet NPCs that act against the norm for their race.)

    Dwarves
    Physical description
    Dwarves are significantly shorter than humans, with males standing, on average, 4’1” and females averaging 3’9”. They are quite stocky, however, and males average 160 lbs while females average 130 lbs. They reach adulthood at around 40 years and can live up to 450 years.
    The dwarves of Badger’s Hollow are almost all from clan Terokk, so they tend to share common features. Their skin is usually light brown and their hair ranges from reddish-brown to red. Females usually wear their hair long and in complex braids. Males usually wear their hair in simple styles or even shave their heads to better show off their beards, which they braid as intricately as the females braid their hair. The pattern of braids shows the individual dwarf’s clan, profession, age, and more, although few but the dwarves understand the meanings. In contrast to the complex beard- and hairstyles, dwarves’ clothing tends to be simple and sturdy, made for comfort and protection while performing hard manual labor rather than for show.

    Stats
    Same as standard, except that there are no orcs in the area, and so the dwarves do not have practice fighting against them (no +1 attack vs. orcs) and they do not have orc as a bonus language.

    Elves
    Half-elves

    Gnomes

    Goblinoids
    See here for stat discussion.

    Unlike standard D&D goblinoids, goblins, hobgoblins, and bugbears are not separate species. Goblins are the main species, but approximately 1 out of 10 goblinoids born are actually hobgoblins. Hobgoblins breed true, but generally take goblin mates due to their low numbers. (Hobgoblinism is a recessive genetic mutation.) Approximately 1 out of 100 goblinoids born are bugbears, which are always male and infertile. (Bugbearism is a recessive, sex-linked genetic mutation which causes infertility.) Socially, hobgoblins are respected and are generally leaders of the clan due to their strength. Bugbears are even more respected, but tend to become the clan's prized warriors rather than their leaders. Sisters of bugbears are almost guaranteed a hobgoblin mate, due to the prestige their brother brings to their family.

    Goblins
    There is a setting where halflings are dinosaur riders. Can someone point me towards that, as I'd like to look at the dinos as possible mounts for the goblins here? Found.

    Hobgoblins
    (Bugbears)
    Bugbears are not a PC race, but it fits better to discuss them here.

    Halflings

    Humans

    Non-PC Races
    Fey
    Lizardfolk

    To do:
    Descriptions for all races.
    Stats for gobliniods, minor changes to half-elves.
    Last edited by Savannah; 2011-06-08 at 04:17 AM.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    To do:
    House rules
    Last edited by Savannah; 2011-04-16 at 09:24 PM.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Huh, looks interesting. I suppose it will function much like other large citys in dnd that can be self inclosed settings for edventure, Ex: Neverwinter and Waterdeep?

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Quote Originally Posted by Savannah View Post
    There is a setting where halflings are dinosaur riders. Can someone point me towards that, as I'd like to look at the dinos as possible mounts for the goblins here?
    Eberron has halfling dino-riders. The main dino they ride is almost identical stat-wise to the warpony.

    Oh and from the SRD this. Seems comparable to the heavy horse.
    Last edited by Mayhem; 2011-04-16 at 08:01 PM.

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    About Dinosaurs, you could always ask around in LOTRfan's thread on them. I think one of the regulars their (Dire Moose) is an Archaeologist or some such.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Eberron! I knew I knew it! Thanks.

    As for the dinosaurs, I don't actually want dinosaurs, just giant lizards, but I wasn't too happy with the monitor lizard so I wanted to see what sorts of lizard-y stats were out there.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    No worries.
    And yeah, as AtlanteanTroll said give LOTRfan a buzz. Chances are, if he doesn't have he'll at least know where it is or help you out.
    Last edited by Mayhem; 2011-04-16 at 08:34 PM.

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Quote Originally Posted by Pokon1 View Post
    Huh, looks interesting. I suppose it will function much like other large citys in dnd that can be self inclosed settings for edventure, Ex: Neverwinter and Waterdeep?
    I somehow missed seeing this. I actually don't know, as I'm not familiar with Neverwinter or Waterdeep. My basic idea was to create a setting for all kinds of adventures and let the PCs actions determine what happens - they could just go and do whatever seems fun to them, they could work to bring wealth back to Badger's Hollow (which could include keeping the new Lady Mayor in power, siding with one of the guilds, taking over the city themselves, or not worrying about who's in power but just working on the other "issues"), or any number of other things. The setting isn't just the city, however, it's the entire region, including the abandoned dwarven mine, the Deadwood, the other races' tribal homes, the demiplanes of the fey, and so on.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    .
    I somehow missed seeing this. I actually don't know, as I'm not familiar with Neverwinter or Waterdeep. My basic idea was to create a setting for all kinds of adventures and let the PCs actions determine what happens - they could just go and do whatever seems fun to them, they could work to bring wealth back to Badger's Hollow (which could include keeping the new Lady Mayor in power, siding with one of the guilds, taking over the city themselves, or not worrying about who's in power but just working on the other "issues"), or any number of other things. The setting isn't just the city, however, it's the entire region, including the abandoned dwarven mine, the Deadwood, the other races' tribal homes, the demiplanes of the fey, and so on
    Ah, sounds a bit like Neverwinter, then.

    Neverwinter is the large city-state that the players can influence/adventure in in the neverwinter nights vidieo game series, and serves as the main local in both games, and has oppotunitys to adventure in varying locals around the area outside it

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Looks like a good start! I like that there used to be some sort of sense of purpose to the region but that events have shifted that and now everything is in ruin in a way. I could see all sorts of quests that could pop up for the players in a region like this. And all sorts of NPCs trying to bring themselves to the top of the heap to wrest control of this floundering trade route.

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Aw, so no real dinosaurs, then?
    Just to contribute something, do the riding lizards look anything like this?
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    Drogmors from EverQuest (they come in a variety of colors!).

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Glad you like it, Trog. That's exactly what I was thinking, too....

    And I have no idea if the lizards look like that (although I'm thinking not - I'm envisioning more of a gila monster). I'm not even sure that they are going to be lizards, to be honest.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    *thumb up*

    Quote Originally Posted by Savannah View Post
    History, both recent and ancient.
    Question-that-seems-OOT-but-it-is-not; do you fancy history?

    If you wish, you really have the chance to make it more important than it normally is - by contrast. Technically, since the flow of trade has slowed significantly, so should have the flow of information coming in, forcing people to rely more on past knowledge and vague rumours. And as Badger's Hollow becomes more isolated by the day, the knowledge the players rely upon gets more and more outdated and could be very imprecise or very wrong beyond the zone that is commonly dwelled by people extensively. Some may not like it... I would find such a scenario realistic, though. (and hilarious)
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Finished up the cosmology, particularly the demiplanes of the fey. It's definitely not standard D&D, but I like my fey a little more mysterious and dangerous than standard Also, I'm quite sure that there are more than one type of location that will put you under the power of the fey in folklore, but I can only remember the fairy ring at the moment. Does anyone remember any others (or where to go looking)?

    (Why did I start with cosmology? Because I asked a friend I was chatting with what to start on and that's what he said. Since the precedent of me working on whatever is requested has been started, is there anything you want me to work on next? )

    Quote Originally Posted by Andre View Post
    Question-that-seems-OOT-but-it-is-not; do you fancy history?
    I tend to prefer legend

    Quote Originally Posted by Andre View Post
    If you wish, you really have the chance to make it more important than it normally is - by contrast. Technically, since the flow of trade has slowed significantly, so should have the flow of information coming in, forcing people to rely more on past knowledge and vague rumours. And as Badger's Hollow becomes more isolated by the day, the knowledge the players rely upon gets more and more outdated and could be very imprecise or very wrong beyond the zone that is commonly dwelled by people extensively. Some may not like it... I would find such a scenario realistic, though. (and hilarious)
    That's definitely an interesting idea, however since the loss of the Old Road and the dwarven mine is fairly recent and the PCs aren't going to go beyond this area, I'm not sure how much it would apply.

    You'd like the other campaign setting I was working on, though. I'm detailing the history and legends according to each PC race (in that world, the races are generally quite separated) and of course each is a mix of fact and fiction, which hides essential clues to defeating the BBEG(s). (I haven't posted that world, yet, though.)
    Last edited by Savannah; 2011-04-18 at 07:04 PM.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    I like this setting, it's cute

    Also - other ways to get into Faerie (I'm bored at work, what can I say?)

    Will-O'-The-Wisp. Wikipedia says the fey used it to confuse travellers and one could avoid trouble by simply not following it, but it could be used by angry fey to trap the unsuspecting. Maybe they want to catch a mage who used magic against them.

    Fairy rings can be more subtle than mushrooms. Let me know if you can't see the bigger one (in the background), the small one at the front is really obvious, but I had to look twice to see the bigger one and I'm trained for that sort of thing.

    Fairy Paths. Generally straight line paths between 'significant' sites like fairy forts, fey circles, other places of traditional significance. Perhaps somewhere in a forest there's a strand of green that runs straight between otherwise meandering trees?

    Fairy forts. Says they were generally avoided, but shouldn't be too hard to have someone accidentally enter one.

    Stone circles. Can't believe I didn't think of that one...

    And that was just googling 'entrances to fey lands'


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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    I like this setting, it's cute
    Thanks...I think (Why "cute"?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    Also - other ways to get into Faerie (I'm bored at work, what can I say?)
    Ooh, thanks! I'll see about adding those in sometime soon
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Quote Originally Posted by Savannah View Post
    Thanks...I think (Why "cute"?)
    I don't know... because I'm in a weird mood today? I think it's the name... Badger's Hollow just sounds - cute and rustic. Plus the fact that it's just this region, not an entire world. General rule: the smaller something is, the cuter it is.

    Quote Originally Posted by Savannah View Post
    Ooh, thanks! I'll see about adding those in sometime soon
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    If there is a lake nearby, you could walk across the reflected moon to get to faerie. Out of my imagination.

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Added more details on gates to the fey realms and fey paths.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    Interesting... I think I'm not going to include it in that section, although I probably will note when I'm detailing the common fey creatures that Will-o'-Wisps will sometimes try to lead travelers into fey rings.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    Noted.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    I cannot believe I forgot those! Definitely added

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    Hmm... I have other plans for old ruins in the woods, so I think I'll leave those sorts of things for that. However, I did add rings of pebbles as a possible fey ring, which is sorta like stone circles

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldest View Post
    If there is a lake nearby, you could walk across the reflected moon to get to faerie. Out of my imagination.
    Interesting idea. However, I already have plans for the lakes...I probably shouldn't say more
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    I have really enjoyed reading this setting so far, and I'm tempted to run a game in it if you don't mind. I just have a couple of questions. One, I'm a little fuzzy of Faerie. So, I know pretty well how one might enter it, but what is it? I understand that it's a semi-overlapping demiplane ruled by a faerie lord... but aside from that, what is it for? Just a faerie bachelor pad? Or a place for adventurers to go kill stuff?
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Thanks! You're welcome to run a game in it, but it's very, very much unfinished at the moment, so I'd suggest waiting. (The fact that you want to is a sign that I've done what I wanted to -- made a place where it's very easy to set all sorts of adventures!) I do have some additional DM notes on the mechanics of what I've got so far, so if you ever do run a game, send me a PM and I'll send you the stuff I don't want players knowing

    As for the Fey Realms, they're a series of small demiplanes, each ruled by a different Lord, where the fey live most of the time. They're not a place for adventures to just go kill stuff; the Fey Lords are extremely powerful and don't take kindly to people just killing their kind. I'll be detailing the fey and fey-kin later in the races section. As for what happens there... Parties, dances, hunts, court, weird rituals that no mortals have ever seen, and pretty much anything the DM wants. While there might be adventuring there, it's likely to be trying to get back to the material plane after accidentally stumbling in, rescuing a captive mortal and escaping alive, or possibly negotiation with one or more of the Lords.
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Perhaps Faerie Fief would be useful for your demiplanes.

    Feel free to use anything in the thread, just link back if you use stuff.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Keep going. This sounds like something that would be great for a rookie DM (Like I'm going to be sometime in the future) to start with. With most of the details planned out, its a lot easier for a DM to keep a game running rather than having to try and make up important details on the fly as characters make unexpected decisions.
    I have returned, and plan on focusing on world-building. Issues are being dealt with.

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    Thread won! I don't think I have the authority to do that but whatever

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    Humanoid (human) in the Playground Moderator
     
    Savannah's Avatar

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Added a tiny bit to the races section. I have a lot more that I've been working on, but unfortunately a lot of it is either loose notes that need to be properly typed up or DM-only information that I can't post.

    Thanks, Mulletmanalive, that's quite an interesting feat. However, don't think it's quite what I was going for.

    Glad you like it, Omeganaut! Like I'd said earlier, when I get done there will be a lot of DM-only information not posted, so if you're thinking of running a game in it, let me know and I'll send it to you.
    Knowledge is power.
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    Be evil.

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    Eldest's Avatar

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    Now that I think of it, I'd like a copy of the DM stuff only once you finish.
    And now for the actual helpful part: how many Fae Lords/Ladies are there, and will they all have their own demiplane? Or could (as a random example) a Fae of Summer and a Fae of Winter share a plane and be locked in ceaseless battle, with fortunes turning as the seasons turned...
    On second thought, that sounds more like a thing for dieties. But the question still stands.

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    Humanoid (human) in the Playground Moderator
     
    Savannah's Avatar

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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    If anyone is still interested in this, I've moved it here as I was having a lot of trouble keeping my notes organized in a way I liked. I don't think I've added any new information and I'll probably forget about it for months again, but I figured I'd give anyone interested an update as I'm not planning on updating this thread when I work on this more.
    Knowledge is power.
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    Study hard.
    Be evil.

  29. - Top - End - #29
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    YAY! It's still alive!

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    Humanoid (human) in the Playground Moderator
     
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    Default Re: Badger's Hollow - A mini campaign setting

    I rarely abandon projects. I just ignore them for months
    Last edited by Savannah; 2011-11-18 at 08:46 PM.
    Knowledge is power.
    Power corrupts.
    Study hard.
    Be evil.

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