View Full Version : DM Help Presenting Sword Coast/Faerun to a noob group

2019-06-26, 06:12 AM
I'm starting a short campaign with a group of people, who know general fantasy, but little of actual Sword coast/Faerun. The'll be starting in a small rural town, often visited by caravans. I'd like to have the world reflected for them throught events. Here is what I have so far:
- a caravan comes, protected by Zhentarim mercenaries
- A group of adventurers comes in town. Their gear and mounts are as valuable as an entire town
- A paladin of Lathander visits town. Townsfolk attend a Mass

Any other ideas?

Kaptin Keen
2019-06-26, 06:49 AM
Well, you could have all sorts of things, depending on what you want and like. Red Wizard agents, Cormyrean knights, and so on - but it might also be somewhat suspect if all the major movers and shakers just happen to have their banners on display in your tiny border settlement.

Conversely, you could have a diversity .. thing. Present the peoples, not the banners. Not, in other words, knights and mercenaries, but slaves and merchants and nomads, humans and elves and dwarves, and orcs and hobgoblins and gnolls if that's the sort of world you want to show.

You could portray the differences in cultures - desert peoples from the east, plainsfolk from the central nations, mountain people - each with their own mode of dress, musical traditions, languages, draft animals, and so on.

2019-06-26, 07:12 AM
Just have a few epic level NPCs dueling far over head. Nothing says Forgotten Realms like being overshadowed by the window dressing.

2019-06-26, 09:24 AM
Actually, I find this nice idea. Just not "In the face". How could I present consequences of such a battle in small town?

2019-06-26, 09:53 AM
Actually, I find this nice idea. Just not "In the face". How could I present consequences of such a battle in small town?

I can think of a couple options.

1. Have one of the combatants teleport into town (or above it while flying.) This one is pretty beat up and trying to flee. Give them a moment to get their bearings and prep a dimensional anchor or similar spell. Then the second combatant teleports in and gets slammed with the prepared spell. A round or two of high level spells going off could be freaking terrifying, or you could skip right to... First guy teleports out while the second guy dispels the dimensional anchor looks around and ports off again. He could optionally give up the chase or toss a bag of gold to a town elder "for any damages." Animate, summon, and similar spells could run amok without the caster present to control them.

2. Describe the above fight from the perspective of the local barkeep. It happened a few days ago and they are still cleaning up. It's possible that one of the wizards was killed and buried locally. Minions or allies may come to collect the corpse or pay their respects.

Great Dragon
2019-06-26, 10:02 AM
Actually, I find this nice idea. Just not "In the face". How could I present consequences of such a battle in small town?

Kinda depends on who is "dueling" whome.
Two examples:

Elminster vs Tsas Tam:

Flashes of various colors across the sky from El, and black bolts in return from Tsas with small groups of undead appearing in the town, that the PCs need to deal with.

The Blackstaff vs Manshoon:

All the different energy spells fling everywhere, and Manny turning townspeople into various creatures, the PCs need to subdue those transformed to be restored after the fight. Also need to put out fires to prevent spreading, and help with repairs after the fight.

2019-06-26, 10:26 AM
Boisterous dragon hunters on their way to a lair could be a fun encounter. Bonus points if a handful of survivors stumble back through town a week later with severe PTSD.

A Harper or Red Wizard stopping at the local inn could be a great seed for later adventures. "That fella, Themastris, that was in hear a while back mentioned..."

You could also have a famous ranger swing through town warning of a threat from ______, asking for volunteers for a posse/rescue party, or looking for information on someone else that came through.

If all else fails, have them meet a purple eyed drow with a panther companion...

2019-06-27, 02:24 AM
Great contributions, guys, love them. :)

2019-06-28, 09:30 PM
If you're going to be on the coast ya gotta go out in a boat!