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100 Encounters for a Fantasy Desert (SWADE)


Deserts are mysterious and sometimes deadly places to traverse, with heat and lack of water combining to kill the unwary. This supplement has 100 different encounters that a GameMaster can use to liven up a desert journey, or perhaps make it even more dangerous. Some are interesting, some may lead to new places and some will be harmful to the unwary. The different encounters have been strongly influenced by Ancient Egypt, with lost pharaohs and hidden tombs, with an element of Arabia, but are suitable more most fantasy desert.

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Here are some sample results:

  • A pack of jackals are eating an antelope they have caught. They will not be pleased to be disturbed, and it will take some effort to drive them away from the carcass. The antelope was wearing a, now bloody and damaged, leather collar studded with lapis lazuli (make a Common Knowledge roll at -2 to value the collar at 200 gp).
  • A partially collapsed limestone building sticks out of a sand drift that has gathered around it. The roof, which was made of palm fronds, has disappeared, but the place can still provide a measure of shelter. The building was once a way station for travellers and contains a number of stone beds and the remains of rudimentary cooking facilities. Buried in the sand outside is a trough for animals as well as hitching posts. If the interior is carefully searched, a map of the local area as it was when the way station was still being used can be uncovered. The map is made of papyrus and is fragile from heat (make an Athletics roll at -1 to handle, otherwise the map crumbles to pieces).
  • A pile of what look like naturally tumbled rocks is actually a marker used by the desert nomads to indicate where a water source is. If the rocks are all moved, the water can be reached, but the nomads will not be happy if the rocks are not put back into place and may violently object to outsiders using one of their hidden water sources anyway (change initial reaction to Unfriendly and Persuasion rolls suffer a -4 penalty).
  • A polished bronze oil lamp can be seen embedded in the ground. If the lamp, a simple shape with a spout and a handle on the opposite side, is removed from the sand, it is in good shape but there is no oil in it. The lamp appears to have once had a lid, but that lid is missing and cannot be found in the surrounding area.
  • Approaching through the desert is a long berm of sand about 10' wide and 3' high. It looks as if something large and wormlike is moving rapidly through the desert just below the surface. Whatever it is will not attack when it approaches, unless it is first attacked, but the moving berm will knock anything standing off its feet unless they are careful (make an Athletics roll with -1 to remain standing).

One page is the front cover, one the front matter and one is ads.

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File Last Updated:
May 15, 2024
This title was added to our catalog on May 18, 2024.