Friday, 31 January 2020

[Stellar Fiefdoms] 5th edition Space Feudalism - Aristocratic backgrounds

It's been a bit quieter in here lately, and there is a good reason for that:
I'm working on a new project...

Space Feudalism

Stellar Fiefdoms is my attempt to emulate “Space Feudalism”, which is, for me, a sub-genre of science fiction as much as fantasy, at one of their intersections called space fantasy or science fantasy.
It’s a universe where technological advancement has brought humanity to the stars, but society has decided to take a turn back in time and revive some sort of medieval societal organisation.
Aristocracy and Church are the main powers, and their whims can be made into law.
Many technological wonders were banned, first and most importantly one: the microprocessor and any kind of artificial computing machine.
Space travel is faster than light, but only possible thanks to drugged-up fortune-teller than can choose exactly where and when to drill a hole in the space-time continuum with their motor and come back unscathed on the other side of the transfer-black-hole.
Faster than light communication is only done by way of courier, bringing wax-sealed messages using the jump-ships.
The central authority of the emperor is uncontested thanks to his unrivaled military power and the backing of the Church, but the nobles ruling their planetary fiefs enjoy a lot of freedom, far away from Messadoon, the imperial planet and seat of the Adelscabinet (The House of Lords, the law-making body of the Messaran Empire). At least, as long as they respect imperial laws and pay taxes.


The game system motorising Stellar Fiefdoms is a mix of old and new, ranging from mechanics dating to the first role playing game to its newest installment, with rules borrowed from other clones and editions situated in between.

The f5eats system

Stellar Fiefdoms is motorised by the f5eats system, a system with roots in the fifth edition of the oldest published role-playing game. It also borrows concepts from the third edition of the same game, particularly the feats that are central in the f5eats system. This system is an attempt at deconstruction of the third and fifth editions, trying to mix the best of them to obtain a fun and simple system, with a progression not based on levels, but on feats. A bit of Macchiato Monsters is also sprinkled on top

GM Binder

I'm trying to get a handle on the GM binder's tools (check them out, their page is really great)
The out put is a pdf (or at least the extract i'll show you)
Instead, I'll upload image files of each page in here, to ease readability.


First i want to present you the 3 aristocratic backgounds.

As always Comments and Questions are welcome !

Wednesday, 22 January 2020

[DIY/OSR] D10 Table: Who profits from the troubles? 2020 RPG blog carnival - random encounter tables

Who profits from the troubles?

Thomas Bewick - Wood engraving from a Robin Hood book - 1795

Buisiness as usual

We all know the drill. You arrive at a village at the edge of the civilised world. The atmosphere is gloomy, the good folk is suspicious of strangers and the town elder comes to you as soon as you get your beer at the obligatory tavern.
This village has a problem. And you are here to solve it, because your are the heroic protagonist of this story.
Still, researching in the village you happen to find out that a group or a person is profiteering from the troubles in the village.
It can be related to the story or a red herring, that’s up to the DM, but it brings depth to the story.
It's the kind of encounter that allows you to flesh out a settlement, presenting new NPCs and clues to follow, while improvising...

So who profits from the troubles?

D10 Profiteer
A cleric of an infamous god has declared the troubles to be announcing the end of the world! He is quickly recruiting desperate villagers into his apocalyptic cult. Will the PCs resolve the troubles swiftly enough to prevent a mass suicide?
A travelling peddler offers goods at prohibitive prices that are ideal to resolve the troubles. He doesn’t seem to have anything else for sale. Fortunately for him, demand is high and he’s the only one stocking these items/services
A local druggist sells very cheaply small hemp dolls to protect from bad luck. At first it works well and their owners are safeguarded from the troubles. But soon they turn pale and look exhausted. The druggist appears to be younger by the day…
The lord of the barony downstream delivers free food and help, while bad-mouthing the local holder of the authority, who is away on a diplomatic mission
A caravan of merchants from the neighbouring duchy has installed their camp near the village. They offer "relocation-serfdom-contracts" to those who lost everything to the troubles. That particular duchy has not abolished slavery, but the villagers do not know that...
An archmage from BigTown upon GreatRiver arrived and proposed to eradicate the problem. As a reward, he only asks for a small favor: to be allowed to raise the dead and use them as workforce for the next 10 avernian years
A hero pretends to be able to resolve the troubles by himself “for free”  IF but only IF the whole village swears to praise his name at every occasion, declare their unlimited admiration for him to every out-of-towner & rename the village after him. Maybe write a song about his heroic deeds, too?
A band of adventurers claiming to have cleared an unholy temple near Troll-Forsaken-Hamlet offers their protection for a hefty sum to the isolated farmhouses. Sure they bleed the farmers dry, but nothing happens to them anymore. Only Old MacDonald who wanted to terminate his business relationship with them was brutally hit by the troubles only a week after booting them from his farm…
The main political adversary of the lord mayor always arrives first on any site hit by the troubles and sow clues implicating his rival. Who informs him of the incidents, though? Is he an accomplice of the Baddies™?
Doctor John Georges Darkfist asserts to protect anyone from the troubles, all you have to do is sign (in blood) a contract surrendering your shade to the doctor, but only if you were to die within the next 50 years (small print nullifies that clause and specifies that the shade is the resting place of the soul)


This table partly stems from a discussion on a french discord channel, on the discord from CasusNO, which has now taken it's own life. Half of the entries are mine, but a big thanks for their entries to :
  • Loris 
  • Boulash
  • AsgardOdin 🦉

RPG Blog Carnival: What is that?

Blogger carnivals are a way for a group of bloggers to all simultaneously write about the same topic. They are a great way to build community and dialogue across many different blogs at once.
This benefits fans and readers of those blogs because they have the opportunity to explore lots of different viewpoints in a short period of time.
It also benefits the bloggers because they get new readers to stop by. It also helps with SEO. Everyone wins.

Our host this month is

RPG Blog Carnival: My point of view

I read about this online and loved the idea. I had already posted something on this topic at the beginning of the month, but I decided to created this post from our little brainstorm on discord, to bring more stuff to read to the table. And I really liked the entries on this D6-democracy (that bloated a bit over 6 entries).
And since i'm a dumbass, I had not seen it is about ENCOUNTER tables...
So i'm a bit off-topic - but not completly, since all these are also possible encounters, in the broad acception of the word...
I guess i'll have to work on  proper encounter table until the end of the month

Thursday, 9 January 2020

[OSR]D66 Manifestations that evil is lurking

D66 Manifestations that evil is lurking 

 Konrad Lykosthenes - 1557 - Woodcut from Prodigiorum ac ostentorum chronicon


I read a lot of modules, lately (some are even reviewed on this blog) and what a lot of them lack is backstory. Our good hearted murder hobos are always looking for evil to fight it. But how does that evil manifest?


Well, your basic villager won't call it a manifestation. They might name it the mark of the devil, a bad omen, a curse, or anything superstitious-sounding.
And unless your characters witness the phenomenon (another word the peon won't use), it's all hearsay... Who knows what right, how inflated the rumor was and whose interest it serves if it's a plain lie...
Anyhow, roll 3D66 and start building your dungeon/encounter around those 3 manifestations!

D66 Sign that evil is around
River turns red
Wells smell of rotten eggs
Moon is orange and bigger
Cows die and explode
Sheeps attack humans and try to eat them, showing blood injected eyes
Cats gather around. They seem to discuss or plot something
Graveyard's earth is turned over. Every. Morning.
Fishes fly out of the water
Skeleton of mammoths & dinosaurs roam aimlessly the countryside at night
Crystal balls stay milky & unreadable
Tarot readings always uncover 1) XII: Death 2) XV: The devil 3) XXI: The tower (longer readings show 4) XII: The hanged man 5) 0: The fool [you are the fool!])
Wine turns to vinegar after one hour of opening a bottle
Crows fly loudly around the village?
All cats’ fur slowly turn black, a shade of gray every day (we all know there are 50)
Kids start to grow white hair
An enigmatic wind covers the village with a snow of ashes, falling from midnight to sunrise
The wells and rivers dry out, although it rains every day
Everyone’s shade seem smaller and greyish instead of black
The moon stays full, every night
Rats swarm the city during the night. Cats don’t go out or get savagely rend
Rain of frogs. Most of them even survived!
Domestic animals give birth to mutated offspring (missing limbs, double heads and so on)
Anybody drinking alcohol gets a crippling headache the next day
Swarms of flies bother anyone and their livestock
Everyone's pee is reddish (maybe beetroot fest was last week?)
Everyone wakes up at night from nightmares
Every day, at 11:11 am, it hails for 11 minutes
The sky shows "northern lights".
The whole sky is clouded, all the time, except for a hole around the sun and a halo around it
The village is surrounded by 5 cloud masses, with lightning going from on to the next (forming a pentagram in the sky)
The water of the nearby lake is green and bubbling, stinking of rot. All fish in the lake died
Flocks of fireflies mask the glow of stars because of their numbers
Gigantic mushrooms grow overnight. They are inedible
Every night, freezing rain makes the ground icy and dangerously slippery until noon
It rained blood. The blood is rotting now
Every night, a commoner is turned to stone. His or her face shows a state of ecstasy

Do you miss any kind of ill omen in this list?
Then, add it in the comments!

Edit: Well, apparently, Phil Viverito was missing the 2 following strange occurings. He posted that in the comments on mewe and I decided (with his accord) to post them here, because they are great ideas !

  1. 1 out of 100 doors does not lead to the space visible or reasonable congruent area beyond the doorway. Sometimes, entering one door will allow access to a different home in the village. If these entrances go someplace outside of the village, no one has come back to complain.
  2. When it rains, some puddles are 6 feet deep. Others appear to be deeper, but no one knows how deep because that person never surfaces after falling in.

Check his blog at, there is a lot of cool stuff there, too !

Somewhere else

If you want to knwo "what's the deal with this town", I recommend this blog post by archons march on

Small challenge !

If you create an adventure or dungeon based on this table, I would try to layout it nicely with GM Binder and publish it here on the blog ! (and do a bit of editing, if you want that too)
C'mon ! Let's use this table !