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    Canonfire :: View topic - Postfest Village: Who are the professionals?
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    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:03 am  
    Postfest Village: Who are the professionals?

    The "Postfest Think Tank Edition" brought up an interesting subject:
    What kind of professionals are there in an average village of Flanaess? I know it's a very broad question, but let's try to think things in general terms.

    In 3rd edition DMG it says that a village of 200 people has (in addition to a blacksmith) "seven expert crafters and professional of various sorts".

    I have always defaulted these to be a carpenter, a wise(wo)man/minor sage, an assistant smith, a cobbler, a local trader and a couple of spinsters. Sometimes there's an expert midwife also. In that case the wisewoman fills that role OR I remove the assistant smith and replace him/her with a midwife.
    I think that every village should have one crafter for iron and one crafter for wooden items.

    It should be noted that experts are always very good at what they do. Even the lowliest expert gets decent modifiers and knows multitude of skills that create perfect synergies.

    But anyway... A village of 200 people. Who are the main professionals in that village and why?
    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:23 am  

    What's the point in "Spinsters?" All they do is make thread. Without "home spun," everybody in the Hamlet is going to be naked anyway! Evil Grin

    So, we should probably add a "Weaver" into the mix, so that there's someone "close buy" that can actually use the thread/yarn that the Spinsters will be making. Wink

    And I can see where a "ninth" would need to be inserted, sort of an "honorary" member of the Hamlet.

    So, my list of "9":

    - Blacksmith
    - Blacksmith's assistant (#1 - they all have one, sometimes it's a two man job)
    - Weaver (#2 - someone has to make the "home-spun")
    - Spinster (#3 - someone has to make the thread and yarn. Horse-hair {tail} was popular, before the advent of cotton)
    - Midwife/Wise-woman (#4 - there's always one, even today they're popular)
    - Cobbler (#5 - even though most kids go barefoot)
    - Potter (#6 - since most "pots" and dishes will be "earthenware")
    - Tavern/Inn Keeper (#7 - either of these requires a certain amount of "formal" education in order to keep track of the money)
    - Merchant (#8 - The "part-timer." A regularly visiting Merchant can be used, rather than someone who actually "lives" in the Hamlet. He can show up once a week, or twice a month, with the Hamlet's needs.

    Of course, the "Spinster" opens up all kinds of possibilities. Where on Oerth does she get all that "hair" for spinning her yarn? And is it really something as mundane as . . . horse? Confused Evil Grin

    Of course, they did use cotton -- long before the advent of the "cotton gin" -- but does our Hamlet really have cultivated fields that large? My thinking is that most of the cultivated areas -- few as they are -- are used for the production of . . . food!

    Oh! Wait! I forgot! We have a "visiting" Merchant! Laughing

    Each one of these will need an assistant, in some form or fashion, but they do not actually need to be fleshed out. How often would the PCs interact with them? The PCs will interact with the Assistant Blacksmith fairly often . . . repairs, horse shoeing, etc.

    Though I can see where the PCs might interact with the Serving Wench . . . and wind up in trouble! Evil Grin

    Well, there's my two copper pieces! Wink
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    Last edited by Mystic-Scholar on Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:39 am; edited 2 times in total
    Master Greytalker

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:30 am  

    I build villages all the time, as my players tend to travel a lot. Here's my list for what I'd call a "hamlet" of 200:

    1 barber
    1 brewer
    1 carpenter
    1 cobbler
    1 furrier
    1 jeweler
    1 leather worker
    1 mason
    2 tailors (master & apprentice)
    1 weaver

    1 tavern

    The rest of the population would be farmers, herders, fishermen, miners, et al, depending on the setting.
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:04 am  

    Great stuff so far! I'm definitely stealing some of those DMPrata and Mystic Scholar.
    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 11:47 am  

    I spent two years -- nights and Saturdays -- in a furniture making class. We built a peddle operated Lathe, a hand operated Spinning Wheel and Spindle, as well as a hand operated Loom.

    The Lathe was by far the hardest. Why? Because you need a Lathe to build those things in the first place! Laughing Laughing Laughing

    Once we had a hand carved Lathe put together, we were able to build an even better Lathe. Then we built the Spinning Wheel and the Loom. So, contrary to what some might believe, everybody in the village isn't going to have one of those "machines," nor will they know how to operate them.

    Our Hamlet exist long before the "Industrial Revolution." So these people will be "professionals" and will have the only "machine" of their kind in the village.

    That's where I get my idea for the Carpenter. The Hamlet Carpenter is the individual capable of building those rudimentary pieces of equipment, without which, "technology" cannot advance. Wink

    Now, in the Real World, the Spinning Wheel did not come along until the 11th Century. Before that, it was done with a Spindle and Distaff. So we also need to decide how far along our "World" is advanced. Do we have Spinning Wheels? Or is our Hamlet small enough and backward enough that our Spinsters use Spindle and Distaff?

    Lots to decide! Wink

    (Wish I knew how to add pictures to these posts!)

    Cebrion! Razz
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:08 pm  

    Posting links to pics is easier to be sure, so everyone can do that.

    Lots of good thoughts so far. The blacksmith definitely needs a helper/apprentice. That's the poor schmuck who gets to gather the proper wood to make charcoal all day, and operate the bellows until his arms fall off. Laughing

    As to weaving, it would seem that Greyhawk is tech-wise well into the middle ages- if they have full plate armors, they probably have spinning wheels. Doesn't mean everyone has one though, and they are probably rare on the fringes of society, just as other tech will often be. The spindle (and distaff) method of making yarn, and looms for weaving cloth however would be very common, as they require very little skill to make, and are probably most often made by the women who use them.

    Just for information purposes, here is a great tutorial video on one spindle method for those unfamiliar with the technique: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FrZcr7_qXFY

    And another showing people still doing things in the oldest of ways, even now (who wants to bet she's saying something like, "Quit standing around watching me, and go do some work you lazy boy!" Happy) http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=ShSIOF0o5js&feature=endscreen

    Bringing up the lathe is good point, and is part of why I would lump Carpenter skills in with those of a Wainwright. I wainwright will need to be able to make true axles (well, true enough), and while being able to make spindled wheels for wagons/carts is not a requirement (solid wheels can do), it could be a simple feature on more expensive wagons and carts. And why not have the option. This individual will probably be the most skilled carpenter (with regard to precision work) in the village. could throw cooper in with him too, as making good barrels is also a more precise operation. This individual should probably have an apprentice/helper too. Things they make: wagons, carts, yokes, everything but the blade portion of plows, barrels, boxes, chests, trunks, doors (the hardware for these are made by the blacksmith though), chairs, tables, and stools. Regular folks can handle making beams for houses using axes, adzes, chisels, and planers, which leaves this individual free to make the more specialized stuff. What the village can't use/afford, they can of course trade with outsiders.

    Which brings me to another somewhat important thing. Even though there is no river nearby, the village could still have a small, ox-powered saw mill, but it wouldn't be capable of cutting tress with massive diameters (that would require lots of animal power). Such a mill would be capable of creating lumber plenty large enough to build anything that a carpenter/wainwright/cooper might make though.

    There is probably a lot cooperation going on between the blacksmith and the Carpenter.
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    Last edited by Cebrion on Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:40 pm  

    I think I will post this separately (just to be able to find/update it more easily).

    Seven professional sound like a lot, at least until the lists started being put up. Then I see a few things that would be necessities that I hadn't yet thought of. Still, a lot of people are going to be able to take care of most of their basic needs. So, what things can they rally not do for themselves? Those are things that you need professional for.

    What professions/businesses does a small woodland village really need?

    1. Miller
    2. Blacksmith
    3. Brewer

    What other professions is a small woodland village also likely to have?

    1. Cobbler/tanner/leathworker (even if a lot of people will go barefoot)
    2. A more skilled woodworker
    3. Thatcher (might have another job, as there isn't enough work to support himself in a small village, because a lot of people will take care of their own thatching work).

    What less likely professions could there still be in a small woodland village?

    1. Jeweler (let's face it, jewelry doesn't have much value for folk in the woods, but the area is apparently rich enough in various mineral deposits, so it is possible; at the very least for trade export reasons).
    2. Tailor
    3. Spinster/Weaver/Dyer ("Home spun" = most everybody spins thread in their homes, weaves their own cloth, and makes their own clothes. That is very common. However, the village could have one person with a spinning wheel (a prized possession no doubt), who spins the finest thread and weaves the finest cloth in the community. She could even be married to the tailor (or have a daughter married to the tailor). I don't envision a textile shop or anything like that, but basically a home with a separate work space, or a separate out building that is the work space.)
    4. A sawmill (could be a part of the carpenter's business though, so the operation is on the small side, meaning support just the village's needs)
    5. Mason (with stone not being a main building supply, and with not much stone about, the village really doesn't have much need of one. Times, they could be a changin' though).
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    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:48 pm  

    I don't "see" a Brewer as necessary. I personally know TONS of people in Mississippi and Alabama who brew their own bear, in jars, in the window, by the gallon. If we have an Inn/Tavern needing large quantities, then I see them having it shipped in via the bi-monthly visits of our wondering Merchant.

    Merchants are always looking to "make a buck" and will not pass up any village that they may hear/learn of. Besides, in a village of approximately 250 people, how many barrels of ale can they go through in a week?

    Besides, I thought this area was considered "poor" farmland? Who in the Hamlet is growing all of this wheat and/or barley that's being turned into beer/ale? What little "our" people grow is going to get used to make bread, not beer. The "wives" wouldn't sit still for that, they have children to feed!

    Cebrion wrote:
    What less likely professions could there still be in a small woodland village? . . . Spinster/Weaver/Dyer ("Home spun" = most everybody spins thread in their homes, weaves their own cloth, and makes their own clothes.)


    Makes their own clothes, probably, but, as I said before, owning their own Loom? Making their own fabric? I don't think so, not each and every villager. Everyone did not own their own loom in the Middle Ages. That's where your Carpenter/Wainwright comes into play. Can the people in the Hamlet afford to pay him to build them their own loom?

    As for a mill, mules and oxen were used to power grain mills for centuries. I don't have a problem "seeing" an intelligent person finding a way to do it for a rough-cut lumber mill. But I think that might be too large an industry for our little Hamlet. I think we should stick to the "log cabin" scenario, with shake or thatched roofs.

    Besides, a mill never stops; how much finished lumber does the Carpenter/Wainwright need? How many "new" houses are under construction? Who in the heck is he selling all that lumber too? Our lumber mill is creating quite a "trade route" for our little "out of the way" Hamlet. Lots and lots of merchant traffic.

    Of course, it could be a little used/abandoned/derelict/haunted mill! Shocked Laughing

    As for the mention of having some things done with magic, I don't like the idea of having that "powerful" of a Magician living in the Hamlet. I'd like to see the "resident wizard" -- if we have one -- kept down to around 3rd level and no more.
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:25 pm  

    Not everyone may have a loom, even if most will have one of these (don't need a carpenter to make a frame loom). But, some people might simply not have time to weave cloth due to having other duties, which means there could be enough of a demand for weaving services. Plenty might spin their own thread, but some will then hire the weaver to make it into cloth for them (and perhaps dye it too).

    As to a brewer, if there will be an inn or tavern there really needs to be a brewer (likely the inn/tavern keeper themselves). A few gallon jars of home brew won't cut it for a whole village day-to-day. I see the village as being rather self-sufficient in most cases anyways, and trading is likely to be done as circumspectly as it an be, at least with the Palish, so they won't be relying on a trader to supply them. The village might trade for some specialty drinks of course, and there are dwarves, elves, and gnomes close by to provide such things. The Palish? Probably not so much (but you never know). Laughing

    One thing that the village will likely trade for is raw iron and steel, which they likely get from the dwarves of the Flinty Hills.

    One last general thing. In a small village, some related trades would be done by one person (and a helper/apprentice), but as the village grows and the population expands, these combined trades will begin to fracture into fully specialized trades of their own, with workers detailed to each. The village isn't there yet though.

    Looking at some of the old module villages does make me laugh a bit at some of the things that they do not include.
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    Last edited by Cebrion on Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
    Adept Greytalker

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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:23 am  

    When the DMG says 200 people, does it mean:

    1) 200 of all ages?
    2) 200 adults?
    3) 200 heads of household?

    This is pretty important. A medieval village of 200 would have a large proportion of children, and easily less than 50 adults. Options 2 and 3 are obviously larger settlement.

    I am not famliar wth the village under consideration, but a good source for life in a medieval village would be World Unending by Ken Follet. Basically, in the manorial village, people did most tasks themselves, and bought specialty items either from peddlars and tinkers, or when they went to the fair about a day's walk away each Sunday. People generally built their own shabby houses, knocked together their own shabby furniture, stitch their own shabby clothes and maintained their tools as best they could while trying to grow enough food for their taxes and consumption.

    A midwife is certain the be present, as it would by default fall upon a local women to have this skill set (no one is walking to the next village to give birth). The rest would would depend on the local resources and proximity to other settlements that might have the necessary specialists. Most, if not everyone, will be invovled in food production, not neccessarily the value-added steps that make for varied village economies and local delicacies.

    The major point to bear in mind is that medieval life, on a household scale, was about self-reliance. Shipping food overland is very expensive, so a settlement is almost certainly going to be self-sufficient in this, and even your craftsmen are going to have small plots they work to at least partially feed themselves. If the land is marginal, than a greater proportion of the village will be working it. If there is a notable resource nearby, there would likely be a small industry built around it, though it would most likely be the sort of industry that prepares the resource for shipping rather than finishes it.

    So basically, a village this size will have food and household items that the characters can trade for. Any specialist in my mind will be a notable NPC, and they will be few.
    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:34 am  

    tarelton wrote:
    When the DMG says 200 people, does it mean:

    1) 200 of all ages?
    2) 200 adults?
    3) 200 heads of household?



    #2 is correct. This is specified in the DMG.
    GreySage

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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:19 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    Not everyone may have a loom . . . (don't need a carpenter to make a frame loom). But, some people might simply not have time to weave cloth due to having other duties, which means there could be enough of a demand for weaving services. Plenty might spin their own thread, but some will then hire the weaver to make it into cloth for them (and perhaps dye it too).


    You and I are on the same page, merely speaking different languages. As you are implying, most women in the village are not going to have "time enough in the day" to do all those things, no matter how much they might like to. So I think a Weaver would be appreciated, with an assistant who does the Weaver's spinning. Making "cloth" takes a lot of thread!

    Cebrion wrote:
    As to a brewer, if there will be an inn or tavern there really needs to be a brewer (likely the inn/tavern keeper themselves). A few gallon jars of home brew won't cut it for a whole village day-to-day. I see the village as being rather self-sufficient in most cases anyways, and trading is likely to be done as circumspectly as it an be, at least with the Palish, so they won't be relying on a trader to supply them.


    As I said, my primary concern with this is . . . Who's growing all that wheat/barley? I thought we were in an area that wasn't very arable? The Pale certainly isn't, with its "short" growing season, which is why they rely so heavily on herding. (There's a supply of wool and leather for you! Now we can really do some "spinning!" Wink )

    In addition, what's the total population of our village? If "250," then we can probably assume that not more than 75-80 of them are men. Do all the men drink? How many have only 1 or 2 mugs of ale a week? How many barrels a week will they go through?

    I think a tavern with a small brewery in the "back room" will serve our Hamlet's needs. We do not require a separate Brewer to supply the Tavern with ale. And I think mead would be a good supplement to ale. No wheat necessary, just honey and water. Wink

    Doh! No one's mentioned "Bee Keeper!" Embarassed Evil Grin Laughing Laughing Laughing

    Since ancient Monasteries were known for making beer and wine, perhaps our resident Druids could be involved in making the Hamlet's mead? Hey! I like that idea! Shocked Cool Happy

    The Tavern produces some three barrels of ale, the Druids a couple of barrels of mead, each week. A barrel was not as large as a 55 gallon drum, but it was larger than a "car boy," which is 25 gallons. That would easily make some 170 gallons of beverage each week. If the men in the village are drinking more than a couple or three gallons of alcohol each week, then they're too drunk to ever get any work done!

    The thing to keep in mind is . . . if it's a "short" growing season in that area, then in order to keep "beer" all year, they are going to have to grow one hell of a lot of wheat/barley during their "short" growing season. And that means silos to store it all. Confused

    And that's an "industry" . . . farmers dedicated to providing wheat/barley to the tavern brewery. And for a Hamlet located "one mile" inside of a forest, that's a lot of arable land. Wink
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    Paladin

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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:10 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    I think a tavern with a small brewery in the "back room" will serve our Hamlet's needs. We do not require a separate Brewer to supply the Tavern with ale. And I think mead would be a good supplement to ale. No wheat necessary, just honey and water. Wink
    Since ancient Monasteries were known for making beer and wine, perhaps our resident Druids could be involved in making the Hamlet's mead?

    Aggree with MD on this observation, Though I would also add two things...
    1> Wine is an alturnate
    2> There (I think) is an Abby north of our hamlet... Abbotsford..... Though maybe this would imply"Abbot Crossed the stream there"? At any rate, to my knowledge Abbotford has not been defined as well. So there is certainly a "possibiliy" of the Abby existing and providing some trade for our quaint little community in the forms of "spiritual influence" both divine and Oerthly.... Razz
    Further, this would not deplete labor resources for maintaining and refining such could be done by the Abby.
    GreySage

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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:08 am  

    Oh! And let me just mention this; If Wenta looks anything like what Argon posted on The Canonfire Crier -- and our Front Page -- then we definitely need to have a Church dedicated to her in our village! Happy

    Speaking for myself, I am definitely creating a Cleric of Wenta for my campaign. Wenta will be the Goddess of "Ale" and . . . Licentiousness! Or, at least, Lasciviousness!

    Hey! It goes with drinking to excess! Woo-hoo! Evil Grin


    Mwahahahahahahahahaha!
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    GreySage

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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:35 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Doh! No one's mentioned "Bee Keeper!" Embarassed Evil Grin Laughing Laughing Laughing


    Wrong, you are, my friend. I knew I'd mentioned it somewhere. It's in Cebrion's New Postfest thread for this project in the Postfest Forums and Archives forum. Though, I should have called the expert position an 'apiary'. Happy

    Here's a link: http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=5353

    SirXaris
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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:27 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Wrong, you are, my friend.


    Wait a minute! What? In two whole pages of commentary you wrote "Beekeeper" into a list and I'm supposed to give you credit for that! Shocked

    Razz

    Oh, alright! But don't expect me to be happy about it! rolleyes

    Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:56 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Cebrion wrote:
    As to a brewer, if there will be an inn or tavern there really needs to be a brewer (likely the inn/tavern keeper themselves). A few gallon jars of home brew won't cut it for a whole village day-to-day. I see the village as being rather self-sufficient in most cases anyways, and trading is likely to be done as circumspectly as it an be, at least with the Palish, so they won't be relying on a trader to supply them.


    As I said, my primary concern with this is . . . Who's growing all that wheat/barley? I thought we were in an area that wasn't very arable? The Pale certainly isn't, with its "short" growing season, which is why they rely so heavily on herding. (There's a supply of wool and leather for you! Now we can really do some "spinning!" Wink )

    The open plains of the Pale itself are apparently not very arable (or at least poorly suited for growing anything that isn't grass for herds to eat), but the lush Gamboge is very much different. Apparently things grow very, very well in the Gamboge. Seeing as that might not be able to be fully explained by run-off from the eastern hills and mountains, I have gone with there being an aquifer beneath much of the area of he Gamboge, and so we have the use of wells here. This is actually a really big deal, as it means that the water supply is not very easily tainted as is water comes from an above ground source. The water in cities is usually tainted and , unboiled will lead to sickness and even death, and so common folk quickly learned that beer, ale, etc., are safe to drink, and so practically everyone drinks it- even the kids (albeit watered down version). And so many people in village will drink water simply because it is safe to do so. That will cut down the ale consumption to a more manageable level. Still at lest half of the farmers will be growing grains of various types, as they are main staples. Wheat will be most common, followed by oats and barley; maybe some rye.

    As to the land, the Gamboge will be "fun" to clear, but they likely do so be establishing a cleared perimeter, cut down what else they can, and then do a controlled burn. Then begins the stump pulling. The land can be cleared though, and this will likely be something that a family doesn't do on its own, but they get help from others where they can in return for those helpers getting a portion of the first harvest. The more likely occurrence is that the whole village helps out to clear any new land, and in gratitude the farmer then provides a percentage of the harvest for Brewfest, which the whole village takes part in communally. In such a small community, the villagers will very often work together (i.e. be good neighbors). Other than that, any time fields are expanded, or new ones cleared, the village's defensive perimeter will need to be expanded too (there will plenty of wood to help out in that though). As such a project is a general welfare sort of thing, it is one that the whole village will probably work on. This is definitely not an "Everyone for themselves!" sort of place.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    In addition, what's the total population of our village? If "250," then we can probably assume that not more than 75-80 of them are men. Do all the men drink? How many have only 1 or 2 mugs of ale a week? How many barrels a week will they go through?

    I think a tavern with a small brewery in the "back room" will serve our Hamlet's needs. We do not require a separate Brewer to supply the Tavern with ale. And I think mead would be a good supplement to ale. No wheat necessary, just honey and water. Wink

    Yep, like a microbrewery. It can brew mead, beer, and ale, but maybe not wine and stronger spirits.

    Oh, and the population number includes children. I took the total number and divided it by 6 to come up with an estimated family count, though by that I really mean the number of structures in the village proper. A few structures will have more people, some less, and some of the people live more remotely on the fringes of the village. I do not count the homes of these folks in the number of structures the village proper has. We can always tweak the population number a bit if we like, but as I said, the population of this village already well exceeds those of more well known villages.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Doh! No one's mentioned "Bee Keeper!" Embarassed Evil Grin Laughing Laughing Laughing

    Not just D'oh!, but double D'oh!!! Laughing My grandfather and uncle kept bees for most of their lives, and now my cousin has taken it over from my uncle. Yet another "How did I not think of that?" moment, and that is exactly why these threads are so useful. "Beekeeper" doesn't rate as a full-time profession in a small village though. However, a farmer or two that grow a lot of clover (a common animal fodder) would be the perfect candidates to keep bees, and thus provide the community with honey. This is actually a very common practice, which is why most honey you see will be clover honey.

    Oddly enough, the back story of a book I am reading centers on the establishment of a large medieval trading community, and it is mentioning all sorts of issues related to starting certain industries, and a bit of what is required to do so. Kismet, it seems. Happy
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    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:13 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    Oddly enough, the back story of a book I am reading centers on the establishment of a large medieval trading community, and it is mentioning all sorts of issues related to starting certain industries, and a bit of what is required to do so. Kismet, it seems. Happy


    What book? I read Dorothy Dunnet's NiccolÚ Rising and it gave me so many ideas about stuff to do in a campaign to involve characters in trade and industries. I'm always on the lookout for similar books.
    GreySage

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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:24 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    Apparently things grow very, very well in the Gamboge. Seeing as that might not be able to be fully explained by run-off from the eastern hills and mountains, I have gone with there being an aquifer beneath much of the area of he Gamboge, and so we have the use of wells here. This is actually a really big deal, as it means that the water supply is not very easily tainted as is water comes from an above ground source.


    Being from the West (Colorado) where wells are much more common than in the rest of the Country (many homes depend on well water) I know about Aquifers . . . but that's not the point.

    Do a little more research and then explain to me . . . just how much land does it take to grow enough wheat to keep a village of 250 in beer all year long? Meaning?

    Meaning . . . What damn forest? You've cleared all the land!

    A forest village is not, by any means, going to supply itself with enough wheat to produce that much beer.

    I'm not going to dig them out, but will let "you" do the research, but several of my books on the Roman Army talk about times when the soldiers rebelled. They rebelled because their officers were feeding them meat, but no wheat. The soldiers were promised what amounted to a loaf of bread a day. They weren't getting it. So the soldiers were of the opinion that their officers were trying to starve them to death!

    The women of the village are not going to allow the men to use all the wheat to make beer. They want their children fed. So, now we need enough wheat/barley to make beer and bread for 250 people for a whole year. And we need to silos to store it all.

    So, again, how much cleared land is that going to take? Our village is sitting in what forest?

    We are now a farming community, not a forest community. Sacred Grove? That was burnt down to make room for more wheat.
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    Paladin

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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:37 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    "Beekeeper" doesn't rate as a full-time profession in a small village though. However, a farmer or two that grow a lot of clover (a common animal fodder) would be the perfect candidates to keep bees, and thus provide the community with honey. This is actually a very common practice, which is why most honey you see will be clover honey.

    Correct, and Clover fits the short growing season, as well as reintroducing nitrogen into the soil for other crops It is a common rotated 2nd "crop". following potatoes, etc that cannot be continually grown in the same locale.
    Paladin

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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 8:34 am  

    *** Lengthy but Neccesary Re-visit**
    Point of this is to determine What we need to populate a fantasy community.
    SOOOO...., while re-reading the various threads associated with our little endeavor, I have seen a trend (sorry its habit). While there is a certain degree of "skill" needed to be an assistant (otherwise known as an apprentice) they are NOT the Professionals and should be excluded from count IF we are ridgid about the number of professionals inrelation to the masses. So whether an assistant to the blacksmith or the taylor or the brewmaster, they may have some skill at the said profession, but are not the master. It is akin to the difference between me (Civil Engineer, with a shop full of tools) and Wink
    While we both have alot of tools, anyone that knows Norm and his work would know he can do it old school too. Its not the tools, its the knowledge combined with whatever tools that are available that makes a professional craftsman.

    What we really are tiptoeing around is work clasifications. It is not to say one is this or could be that too... but All work can really be reduced to these catagories.
    1> Craftsman
    2> Martial Artist
    3> Heath Services
    4> Food Services
    5> Artisans
    6> Labor
    7> Commerce

    As communities grow the classifications become more specialied based on demand need.
    So, if I take the original list I posted (and add some of the others discussed) the working list should look like this for "professionals" to select from. Sure many within the town may have dual skills. We aren't talking about that.. We are talking about the "Go to Guy/ Gal" for those expert consultations.

    Skilled Craftsman
    WoodCrafters

      Basket Makers
      Bowyer/Fletchers
      Carpenters
      Furniture Makers
      Coopers
      Woodsellers
      Miller (wood)
      Wheelwrights
      Weavers
      Paper/Parchmentmakers

    StoneCrafter

      Bricklayers
      Cobblers
      Masons

    Textile Crafter

      Clothiers
      Drapers
      Weavers
      Spinners
      Tailors

    MetalCrafter

      Blacksmith
      Silversmiths
      farrier
      Armorer
      Weaponcrafter

    Martial Artist

      Constable (law enforcement)
      Captain of the Militia (Combat Defense)
      Guards (city & governmental)
      Guards (private)
      Mercenaries

    Health Services

      Barber (dentist)
      Clergy
      Doctors & Unlicensed
      Midwife

    Food Services
    Agreculture

      Farmer
      Plowmaster

    Animal Hubandry

      Grooms
      Livestock merchants
      Fishmongers
      Apiarists (Beekeeper)
      Herdsman
      Rat Catchers

    Process Delivery

      Miller (grain process)
      Baker
      Butcher
      Furriers
      Tanner
      Chandlers
      End Product
      Beer Merchants
      Wine Merchants
      Cook
      Dairy sellers
      Flowersellers
      Grocers
      Pastry Makers
      Saddlers and Spurriers
      Scabbard Makers
      Soapmakers

    Labor

      Barmaid
      Domestic Servants
      Beggers
      Elderly/Infirm
      Guides/touts
      Caravaneer
      Housewives & Househusbands
      Laborers
      Prostitutes
      Launderers
      Journeymen
      Servers (taverns, inns, restaurants)
      Porters
      Thieves
      Slaves
      Tavern Keepers
      Warehousers
      Watercarriers
      Innkeeper
      Mayor

    Artisans

      Engravers
      Jewelers
      Potters
      Students
      Sage/scholar
      Glassblowers

    Commerse & Trade

      Pawnbroker
      Peddlers
      Tinkers
      Toymakers


    All communities would probablyhave someone for each of the 7 catagories described. While they may not be experts by definition in the City of Greyhawk, This aint GH city. Wink

    We just need to determine the Sub-catagories that are applicable for our community.
    A> Craftsman
      <1>*Woodcrafter* Specializing in Bowyer/fletcher,<2>*Textilecrafter* Specializing in Spinning/ Weaving, <3>*Metalcrafter* Specializing in Blacksmithing

    B> Martial Artist
      <4>*Constable* Specializing in Defense

    C> Heath Services
      <5>*Clergy* Specializing in most popular Belief, maybe doubling as herbalist, or midwife

    D> Food Services
      <6>*Farmer* yea they all farm, but AGAIN we are talking about who knows best time, how deep,etc., <7>*Herder* yea they all may have livestock, but AGAIN we are talking about who pulls the stumps, supplies the oxen to go to market, controls the local market herd, deals with cross trade (ie milk, cheese, hair, hide,etc).,<8>*butcher* with specialiation in Tannery

    5> Artisans
      <9>*Glassblower* Since Area is Loamy/Sandy and is not good for making Clay Pots. So containers would be wood or glass containers, glassblower does not only mean just windows

    6> Labor
      *<10>Tavernkeeper* with Specialty Mayor since has dealings with local and visiting clientel.

    7> Commerce
      <11>*Peddler* with specialties in Pawnbroker & Tannery

    So, Thats 11 NPCs to detail out. And maybe their Supporting Cast.
    IMO
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 1:00 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Cebrion wrote:
    Do a little more research and then explain to me . . . just how much land does it take to grow enough wheat to keep a village of 250 in beer all year long? Meaning?

    Meaning . . . What damn forest? You've cleared all the land!

    A forest village is not, by any means, going to supply itself with enough wheat to produce that much beer.

    Most often a woodland village will develop on the edge of a forest. In this case, it happened a distance into the forest. First there were woodsmen/trappers. Then one of them got tired of fornicatin' with woodchucks and such, so he got a woman. But he wasn't the sharin' type, so some of the other men got women too. And then children started to pop up. Everywhere. Over time the community began to expand, as new woodmen/trappers came to the area, and those daughters of the first woodsmen/trappers got hitched to some of the new ones, or the children of extant families began to intermingle. Then more kids started to pop up, and the lush forest was bountiful enough to support them all, and then some.

    And so the village prospered and grew, and eventually the Palish began to get organized enough in their religious suppression that it wasn't just the occasional woodsmen/trappers who wandered in and settle down, but whole families; just not a lot of them. But the community continued to grow slowly over the generations. Prior to the Greyhawk Wars the village was up to a population of 267 total people. This is 100+ more people than Hommlet has (not including the keep, guards, and the workers building the castle), and so the village will be a much more realistic place both in regard to the population numbers and the type and number of professionals it has. Post Greyhawk Wars, the influx of Tenha refugees, and perhaps few others fleeing from other locales, will cause only a a slight population spike, as only certain people will choose the woods over the more civilized fringe areas of the Pale (or other nations). The Post GH Wars stuff is for the "extra credit" though, and I'll think on that more once everything else is pretty much squared away.

    There are about 780 square miles in a single Darlene map hex, and the Gamboge takes up about 1/3 of this hex, meaning 260 square miles of forest. This village will be spread out over maybe 10 of them (about 1.28% of the total hex; 3.85% of the forested area in the hex), and the majority of that area will be fields...surrounded by yet more forest. Sure, this is actually decent sized area, but it will maintain a more rural feel, and not all of fields will be within the somewhat fortified area. The village will have lots of open areas interspersed with small copses of trees, and with an overall surrounding area of forest. Most of the farms will be separated by lines of trees and wattle fences. But, there will be decently sized fields for grains here, both for brewing and for various foodstuffs.

    Sizable stones for building are fairly scarce, but not completely absent, so there are some partially stone structures, but not a lot of them. I'll have to think on that though, as forest does not necessarily = no stone (there's never a non-lazy geologist around when you need one Laughing). There could be a gnomish mine somewhere "nearby" that very much wants to keep the gems and ore that they mine, but that is more than willing to trade away the stone that they also dig up. Transporting the stone through the forest is a hassle though, so it is still not likely there will be lots of partially stone structures, let alone fully stone structures, in the village. So, Stonemason is not exactly a full-time profession here (eventually this would change), but in the meantime a visiting gnome stonemason seems reasonable.

    And yes, I am a bit off topic, but the juices were flowing and I needed to get it down somewhere. Laughing Not that any of this is final, but once I have all of the blather down, I can gather it up and see what fits the best with everyone else's input.

    But back to the specialists. I think we are getting pretty close on who they will be, but a bit more talk can't hurt.

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:

    StoneCrafter

      Bricklayers
      Cobblers
      Masons


    If you are saying that the villagers will be wearing shoes...made of stone...then I will have to put my foot down, heavily (because it has a shoe made of stone on it), and say no to that. Laughing
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    Paladin

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 5:50 am  

    Cebrion wrote:


    But back to the specialists. I think we are getting pretty close on who they will be, but a bit more talk can't hurt.

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:

    StoneCrafter

      Bricklayers
      Cobblers
      Masons


    If you are saying that the villagers will be wearing shoes...made of stone...then I will have to put my foot down, heavily (because it has a shoe made of stone on it), and say no to that. Laughing

    LOL hey give me a break! I did that list on my phone in an airport!!! For some reason I had "cobblestones" on the brain Embarassed
    Also under Artisans one would certainly have Musicians and Singers..... My intent was to create a reduced category list to consolidate choices.
    GreySage

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 6:14 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    There are about 780 square miles in a single Darlene map hex, and the Gamboge takes up about 1/3 of this hex, meaning 260 square miles of forest. This village will be spread out over maybe 10 of them . . . and the majority of that area will be fields . . . surrounded by yet more forest . . . it will maintain a more rural feel . . . The village will have lots of open areas interspersed with small copses of trees, and with an overall surrounding area of forest.


    I appreciate these facts and it all sounds good, but, to make it "work" the way you envision it, I think the village needs to be set-back a bit more than a mere mile.

    When you're talking about a 10 square mile village "area," being one mile "within" the Forest isn't very far. The village would be "noticeable," in that it wouldn't be that much "out of the way."

    Perhaps the village should be set, say, three miles into the forest? That would make it that much more "hidden" from passersby and yet not so far as to be completely vulnerable to monstrous humanoids and other types of danger.

    A three mile long path/road through the forest is "patrol-able" by the village's men/quasi-guards, making it fairly safe for travel -- during the day, but perhaps a little risky at night? Evil Grin

    Perfect! Cool


    Oh! And for DLG: The masonry professions are more "separated" today, then they were "back then." For instance, in Florida you receive a "card" from the Local Unions ( Razz ) that states that you're a "block layer," meaning that you lay Cement Blocks, but not Brick or Rock and vise-versa.

    Real "masons," however, do it all. My uncles learned various trades and I, in turn, was taught by them. My father, however, learned the "family" trade. It was my Great, Great Grandfather, Charles, who was the first "known" Mason in our family, passing it down from father to son for five generations.

    This makes me one of the few alive today who know how to do that "old style" masonry you see on those really old buildings. (You will recall that today, the average age of Bricklayers is their 60s; I'm 52) But the point is -- I can do it all, including pouring the concrete foundation for your home.

    I don't think we'll need two types of Masonry persons for our village, one would suffice.

    Speaking of this, I think a Mason might be in order so as to have a Stone Inn/Tavern, at least the first floor. This could serve as a sort of "fort" in which the villagers gather whenever there's real "trouble." Wink

    With the types of homes Cebrion has envisioned, it would be too easy for "bugbears" (et al) to "burn them out!"

    Oh! The Horror! Evil Grin
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    Paladin

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 7:04 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    Oh! And for DLG: The masonry professions are more "separated" today, then they were "back then."

    Agreed.. hence the "Stonecrafter" category that is general and with in that would reside choices, such as Bricklayers or Masons.
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    I don't think we'll need two types of Masonry persons for our village, one would suffice.

    Would agree (and the list is just that, a list of choices), but I didn't include in my choices because it is likely that the stone would have to be ported from the mountains.
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    Speaking of this, I think a Mason might be in order so as to have a Stone Inn/Tavern, at least the first floor. This could serve as a sort of "fort" in which the villagers gather whenever there's real "trouble." Wink
    With the types of homes Cebrion has envisioned, it would be too easy for "bugbears" (et al) to "burn them out!"

    Well for sake of "C"-bate Laughing Wink Wink Ironwood should be somewhat fire resistant. Cool And do agree, the Tavern/Inn as the focal point.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:30 am  

    Edited: Part of my answer is going to go in the main thread...

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...Speaking of this, I think a Mason might be in order so as to have a Stone Inn/Tavern, at least the first floor. This could serve as a sort of "fort" in which the villagers gather whenever there's real "trouble."


    -For a one time job, they could hire a mason from Abbotsford or Woodsedge, if we assume that although they are not ruled by the Pale, they still have dealings with the Pale. The long-term maintenance could be handled the same way.

    FWIW, I think the village is a lot more likely to have carpenter than mason, and a mason is more likley than a glassblower. Laughing

    Blacksmith would be the number one profession.

    I'm not sure that midwife/healer really counts as a "profession" in this sense. Yes, I know, in Germany it's a licenced profession, like doctor or nurse, but in the Flaneass, it's a lot more common than that. This would just be the woman (99%, anyway) with the most talent , skill, and experience. They could be more than one woman who does this. Maybe they compete, with some sort of mild factional difference (Oeridian vs. Flan?) as a point ("that's not how you birth a baby... Laughing "). In D&D 3.5, she might be an adept (or maybe an expert), and in earlier editions she'd be a 0 level cleric or druid, or (rarely) a sage.
    Paladin

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:12 am  

    jamesdglick wrote:

    Blacksmith would be the number one profession.

    Not to split "hairs" or be argumentative... but disagree... while important, it is not #1.... Farmers & Herders in this case would hold this "prestige" title. Probably, by shear numbers as well as importance. They would carry the collective controlling "vote" as to what the community may hold important. Unless there exists a Caste System. In that event, We would need to define that "hierarchy".
    In any case....
    No Food, No town. While implements are important, they could be obtained via trade or brought with instead of the need to support from site. Just a thought.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:44 am  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    jamesdglick wrote:

    Blacksmith would be the number one profession.

    Not to split "hairs" or be argumentative... but disagree... while important, it is not #1.... Farmers & Herders in this case would hold this "prestige" title. Probably, by shear numbers as well as importance...


    -D*** you, sir! How dare you oppose me! Evil Grin Evil Laughing

    Actually, I guess I'm the one who's "hair-splitting". By "profession" I meant "educated" profession, craft, or trade. In most contexts, farmer or herder would be a "job", not a "profession". See my comment on midwives, above.

    This was my original recommendation for all jobs:

    jamesdglick wrote:
    ...
    1) Herdsmen (Pig, Sheep, Goat, maybe Cattle. This village is on the verge of the Pale, which has a "barely bearable 'summer'" during which "crops are grown with difficulty. A sizeable portion of the population herds animals instead", Living Greyhawk Gazeteer, p. 81.

    People gotta eat, and it's a long and expensive distance to food growing areas, so there's a local market. Hunting and gathering only gets you so far when you have 200 plus people staying put in one place since these people don't seem to be semi-nomadic. I calculate that they could largely remain within a 3 mile radius and still maintain the herds to support 267 people without denuding the area, particularly since herds are usually less wearing on the soil than crops. In the real Middle Ages, pigs often foraged in the wooodland for their feed- acorns being a biggie, thus my earlier suggestion [a swineherd with a truffle-hunting pig]);

    2) Bowyer (They're surrounded by Hornwood; if someone doesn't take advantage of that, they're drooling idiots. Yes, many might be able to do some of this themselves, but it's always nice to have an expert, and he can export. Probably includes Fletcher. IIRC, ash is the best wood for arrows, but I think Elm will do. I'll have to check. I think Bronzewood might be too heavy and too stiff, but I don't know);

    3) Blacksmith (It would be hard for anyone to get by without one locally);

    4) Woodcutter (Not a lumbering oepration. Not everyone has time to gather their own, particularly the blacksmith. The bowyer would colect his own);

    5) Carpenter (Many will have built their own places, but there would be a market for an expert, particulalry bigger jobs, and for maintenance. If he does sideline stuff like arkwright, he can export. He can work with teh blacksmith to do a little wheelwrighting)...


    ...and a note (mangled by Cebrion... Razz ):

    jamesdglick wrote:

    ...Hmmm... 267 people in 45 families. You'll probably need at least 20 families producing food (maybe 35), unless there's some heavy duty magical assistance. Is there anyone in the village powerful enough to moderate the weather, or take care of pests and crop blight? ...


    ...OK, I forgot about the bowyer in my above statement, although I was thinking in terms of ANY village. For this village, surrounded by hornwood, I can't imagine that a bowyer wouldn't be there...

    Again, I'd say that a midwife (or midwives) would be a "job", not a "profession", and would probably be part-time.
    GreySage

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:10 am  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    Farmers & Herders in this case would . . .


    . . . value a Miller (grain) or Butcher more than they would a Blacksmith; Plows were made with wooden blades long before "metal" came along.

    But I agree with James; Farmer and Herdsman would not require the degree of training that Blacksmith, Mason, or Carpenter/Furniture Maker would, so our discussion should center on trained Professionals. These would be people who "went to school," but most likely those who served an apprenticeship with a Master Craftsman.
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    GreySage

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:19 am  

    While a village of 200 isn't going to need a baby delivered every day, I see a role for a midwife/healer/herbalist/wisewoman, probably a low-level spellcaster.
    GreySage

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:42 am  

    rasgon wrote:
    I see a role for a midwife/healer/herbalist/wisewoman, probably a low-level spellcaster.


    Perhaps a 2nd, or 3rd level Druid? I think a low level Druid would be more "in tune" with herbs, healing and delivering babies than would a magic-user.
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    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:50 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    Farmers & Herders in this case would . . .


    . . . value a Miller (grain) or Butcher more than they would a Blacksmith; Plows were made with wooden blades long before "metal" came along...


    -FWIW, IMC, most herdsmen wouldn't need a butcher in most cases; I usually give my herdsmen "Profession (Herder)", "Profession (Stockman)", "Profession (Butcher)" and "Handle Animal". Sometimes, farmers get "Profession (Butcher)" as well. Professional cooks (as in an inn) frequently have "Profession (Butcher)" in their skill set. Most aggie and some non-aggie housewives have it as well. The others who need a carcass fully butchered might need a butcher, but they could pay the person from whom they bought the carcass to do a little extra for them. But, yeah, I see a market for a butcher...

    yeah, D&D 3.5 uses the term "profession" for a lot of skills. You know what I mean... Wink

    EDIT:

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    rasgon wrote:
    I see a role for a midwife/healer/herbalist/wisewoman, probably a low-level spellcaster.


    Perhaps a 2nd, or 3rd level Druid? I think a low level Druid would be more "in tune" with herbs, healing and delivering babies than would a magic-user.


    -FWIW, I already suggested that a 0 level druid or cleric for AD&D1 or AD&D 2, or a 1st level adept for D&D 3.5 could do the job.
    GreySage

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    Wed Mar 20, 2013 7:12 pm  

    jamesdglick wrote:
    . . . most herdsmen wouldn't need a butcher in most cases . . .


    So? I was responding to the 'most important profession' suggestion. Farmers would place more "importance" on a Miller than a Blacksmith and Herdsmen would place more "importance" on a Butcher.

    That's all I was saying. Evil Grin
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:40 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Cebrion wrote:
    There are about 780 square miles in a single Darlene map hex, and the Gamboge takes up about 1/3 of this hex, meaning 260 square miles of forest. This village will be spread out over maybe 10 of them . . . and the majority of that area will be fields . . . surrounded by yet more forest . . . it will maintain a more rural feel . . . The village will have lots of open areas interspersed with small copses of trees, and with an overall surrounding area of forest.

    I appreciate these facts and it all sounds good, but, to make it "work" the way you envision it, I think the village needs to be set-back a bit more than a mere mile.

    When you're talking about a 10 square mile village "area," being one mile "within" the Forest isn't very far. The village would be "noticeable," in that it wouldn't be that much "out of the way."

    Perhaps the village should be set, say, three miles into the forest? That would make it that much more "hidden" from passersby and yet not so far as to be completely vulnerable to monstrous humanoids and other types of danger.

    A three mile long path/road through the forest is "patrol-able" by the village's men/quasi-guards, making it fairly safe for travel -- during the day, but perhaps a little risky at night? Evil Grin

    Perfect! Cool

    What you describe is exactly the feel I was going for. I think I mentioned that the nearest forest border to the village (the one to the south) was 1-3 miles away, but I was thinking that a Darlene map hex is 20 miles across then, but it is 30. So, make that distance 2-4 miles instead, and it is no issue to go with the upper end of that even. Humanoids do use the forest to travel within undetected and then raid north into the Pale. Most are not going to travel as far west as the village is located, but some could still do so. With such a dense forest, there are plenty of possibilities for most anything.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Speaking of this, I think a Mason might be in order so as to have a Stone Inn/Tavern, at least the first floor. This could serve as a sort of "fort" in which the villagers gather whenever there's real "trouble." Wink

    With the types of homes Cebrion has envisioned, it would be too easy for "bugbears" (et al) to "burn them out!"

    Oh! The Horror! Evil Grin

    One stone building won't fix this though, and you mentioned the one real danger here, fire, but that is the case with city buildings too (much more so even, as they are built closer together). The first story won't be stone just the first 4 feet of the wall (and the basement); the rest being beam and wattle and daub. This may only be a one story building with a converted attic space though. One might think that Hommlet's Inn of the Welcome Wench would be a good model to base an inn off of...until one realizes that a single floor of that place is 6,090 square feet. And it has three full floors of that space (18,270 square feet!). And it still has an attic, plus a 1,800 square foot stable too (with loft). Basically, it would be an understatement to say that the Inn of the Welcome Wench is gigantic, but then a good number of things about Hommlet are a bit over the top for a populace of about 160.

    But you have all broken my will, and, sure, there can be a "newish" stonemason here, which means that there will be a few more stone buildings, but not a lot!, he said shaking his fist in the air. Razz
    jamesdglick wrote:
    FWIW, I think the village is a lot more likely to have carpenter than mason, and a mason is more likley than a glassblower. Laughing

    I agree, but we will probably have all of them in some manner, but not too much from them!, he said shaking his fist in the air once more. Razz

    And I very much think that the village will want as few dealings as possible with the the nation that would like nothing more than to tell them how to live their lives, that being the Pale. When they do trade, they probably do so more with other Gambogefolk, the dwarves of the Flinty Hills, very little withe Nyrondese due to how far away that is, and just a bit with the Palish (and even then very circumspectly). Even though Ogburg is the home of one of the most likely candidates to be the next Theocrat, it is unusually tolerant of outsiders. Woodsedge might also be a good candidate for trade. I would say that the villagers would not be all that willing to travel north of Stradsett though. This mostly deal with latter material though, so is "extra credit".
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    Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:51 am  

    I made a new list and please excuse that this is a bit 3.x technical post. Don't mind, please.

    The final list would be:
    Blacksmith
    +
    Assistant blacksmith
    Wisewoman/midwife
    Leatherworker
    Merchant
    Carpenter
    Cobbler
    TRAPPER

    Yes, a trapper... The animal trapper needs lots of specialities and he/she would need to be a very skilled person. They need to understand nature, survive in the wild and maybe know a little bit about fighting. I'm talking about second-class ranger here. The trapper also serves a guide. Ranger is a bit invalid, because they are too powerful to fill this lowly but important role. Commoners are invalid too because they are not men or women of nature. There several more or less dangerous animals around the hamlet. Ranger(s) (if any) would handle the powerful beasts and the animal trapper would fill the rat-catcher/trapper/guide/furrier/butcher/survivalist role.
    GreySage

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    Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:19 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    But you have all broken my will, and, sure, there can be a "newish" stonemason here, which means that there will be a few more stone buildings, but not a lot!, he said shaking his fist in the air.


    Not looking to "break your will," ole boy! And I wasn't really thinking of "stone buildings" either. I was thinking of all those fireplaces! If I already didn't know how to build one, I know I'd appreciate having one that functioned properly, rather than constantly filling my cottage with smoke! That's where the "work" of the village mason would come in. Wink

    Sutemi wrote:
    Yes, a trapper . . . The animal trapper needs lots of specialties . . . a very skilled person. They need to understand nature, survive in the wild . . . I'm talking about second-class ranger here.


    Hmm. The village is going to have two -- if not more -- 2nd/3rd level Druids. Will they not suffice for the village's limited needs? We have a village of farmers and herders, they will not need to subsist on that much hunting, other than what they do themselves.

    I hate to tell you "city boys/northerners" this, but those "boys" in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, et al . . . know how to run a trout line and skin a buck. Shocked

    A "country boy can survive!" Wink Evil Grin
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    Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:16 pm  

    With the main, partially stone buildings already built, other than for fireplaces (and floors, cellars), what other things would a stonemason work on in a place like this? Rattle off a lit of possibilities everyone. Might as well do the same with the Carpenter too. Call it a final enumerating of tasks to see if these individuals have enough work to earn a living. This very much implies a creative use of their skill set so as to find enough work to earn a living.

    Sutemi wrote:
    I made a new list and please excuse that this is a bit 3.x technical post. Don't mind, please.

    The final list would be:
    Blacksmith
    +
    Assistant blacksmith
    Wisewoman/midwife
    Leatherworker
    Merchant
    Carpenter
    Cobbler
    TRAPPER

    Yes, a trapper... The animal trapper needs lots of specialities and he/she would need to be a very skilled person. They need to understand nature, survive in the wild and maybe know a little bit about fighting. I'm talking about second-class ranger here. The trapper also serves a guide. Ranger is a bit invalid, because they are too powerful to fill this lowly but important role. Commoners are invalid too because they are not men or women of nature. There several more or less dangerous animals around the hamlet. Ranger(s) (if any) would handle the powerful beasts and the animal trapper would fill the rat-catcher/trapper/guide/furrier/butcher/survivalist role.

    There doesn't need to be a dedicated Trapper. More than a few of the villagers will have trapping skills, and those skills will have mostly been honed due to needing to keep critters out of the fields, chicken coops, etc. And there are also hunters. All of these tasks are known and performed by commoners. They just are not citified wusses is all. They are tough, and yes, while there are some nasty critters in the dark woods, they still hunt and trap. par of lviing in this viallge is knowing about where they live. The commoners here are mostly men and women of nature, and grew up that way, beuthe vaillge has been here for many generations. The people here are very nature savvy. They live in the woods, so they don't exactly need a specialist to tell them...how to live in woods. Wink

    I don't know about a merchant. Be more specific in what you mean by "merchant", as the term could be applied in various ways. What will such a person exactly be doing?

    Do people think that the village would have enough work to support both a Leather Worker and a Cobbler separately, or should those two jobs be handled by just one person who would then be busy?
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    Fri Mar 22, 2013 12:29 pm  

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...There doesn't need to be a dedicated Trapper. More than a few of the villagers will have trapping skills, and those skills will have mostly been honed due to needing to keep critters out of the fields, chicken coops, etc. And there are also hunters... Do people think that the village would have enough work to support both a Leather Worker and a Cobbler separately, or should those two jobs be handled by just one person who would then be busy?


    -I'm a little lazy right now, but if (say) 70-80 people are hunting and trapping part time, how much leather could they harvest? How many deer can you kill in a three mile radius before you run out? If they go further afield (or awoods), then that's probably less time for their primary job, except for herdsmen, who can sort of do both at the same time (wild animals sometimes avoid livestock as bad mojo)...

    Next, how much profit does a tanner get per pound of leather? How much is tanned but the hunter/trapper himself?

    How much profit does a cobbler or saddlemaker get per pound of leather?
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    Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:27 pm  

    We really do not need to know this level of detail, just settle on something that seems remotely, as this village will already be much more realistically reasonable than any village yet detailed in any Greyhawk adventure. Which is fine.

    And let me define "Professionals", as people seem to be getting off on tangents about what that means. For our purposes, a "professional" will be any sort of remarkable individual whose services are sought out by the vast majority of people because they simply cannot do what the professional can (usually because learning the skill involves a lengthy apprenticeship). Secondarily, some "professionals" will be sought out by many people who might be able to do what the professional can (at least passably so), but time/other work requires that they seek out somebody to do this particular service for them because either their other work is more lucrative, or is necessary for their survival (whereas the sought out service is not).

    As to trappers and hunters, the forest is teeming with game, and its lushness practically guarantees that winters will not be very harsh for game (well, not nearly as harsh as it is in other locales). You won't see hunters and trappers coming in with stuff daily, but weekly and monthly, as would be usual. Due to potential dangers, such individuals will likely travel in pairs or groups of no more than four. There might be one particular badarse who goes out on his own; the sort of woodsman who doesn't actually live in the village, nor anywhere for that matter, and who just visits the village to sell pelts and anything else of value he comes across in his travels.

    A to how many deer one can kill in a 3 mile radius before they run out, apparently quite few, as my uncle has to open his property to hunters every year to keep the population down, and they take out 100+ deer annually. Just from his property (which is but of fraction of 27 square miles in size). Consider a vastly larger area, and spread out the numbers to two deer a week, and we have a more reasonable level of deer hunting for the village.

    The village people (yeah, I said it, finally Razz), will not just eat deer obviously, so the whole village won't really need more than one or two per week. Venison steaks won't be the usual, but venison stew, which makes meat go a long way, would. People will also eat chicken game birds, and rabbit. Then there are the pigs (herders will have those), which people will likely eat the most of, and the occasional wild boar. Some fish from the stream "nearby" will be rare, and beef more rare still. All kinds of leather are used for different things. the most common types of pelts would be rabbit, raccoon, wolf (or even warg Shocked), beaver, muskrat/mink/weasel, squirrel, and whatever fantasy critters that might be good for such, and that live in the woods (mainly giant/dire versions of things).

    So, there is no need for "The Trapper".
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    GreySage

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    Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:27 pm  

    If the tanner/leatherworker/cobbler were all one individual, he would be kept quite busy, but I think that is a good thing. Most people living in the village would make their own temporary repairs to leather goods, but the initial crafting of the leather items (saddles, shoes/boots, backpacks, bridles, harnesses for horses and oxen, etc.) would need a true craftsman. Since he would be pretty busy seeing to the needs of the entire village, he wouldn't have much time to make shoes for all the children. So, we have a bunch of barefoot kids running around the forest and the village streets. Razz

    SirXaris
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    Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:40 pm  

    Right. Many people will make their own stuff, but when they want (and can afford) the good stuff, they go to "The Professional". Same with most things, other than the Blacksmith (as nobody "just happens" to have a forge in their back yard Wink).

    I think the job of herbalist/midwife/healer could be rolled into a the duties of a nature priestess/druid.

    One last bit regarding stats. Anyone who does get to stat out a Professional need not do so with the usual massive stat block. I would be preferable that people just mention the notable bits about them, like this:

    Bob the bower is a gruff older man (age 58), but his few friends know that his surly mien hides a dry wit. He is an accomplished bowyer, having learned some of his trade while briefly living among the elves of the Gamboge. Bob knows he does good work, and will take it as an insult if anyone tries to lowball him when striking a bargain. He will still deal with such individuals, if they haven't insulted him too greatly, but they will be charged 20% more.

    [1E] Bob the Bowyer, Male Human Ranger 3
    Dex: 16, Con: 13, Int: 15, Cha: 8; H.P.: 20, AL: CG
    Profession: Bowyer; speaks Elvish; +1 composite longbow

    [2E] Bob the Bowyer, Male Human Ranger 3
    Dex: 16, Con: 13, Int: 15, Cha: 8, H.P.: 20, AL: CG
    NWP: Boywer-fletcher; speaks Elvish; +1 composite longbow.

    [3.XE] Bob the Bowyer, Male Human Ranger 2/Expert 2
    Dex: 16, Con: 13, Int: 15, Cha: 8; H.P.: 20, AL: CG
    Track, Wild Empathy, Favored Enemy: goblinoid, Combat Stuyle: Archery (bonus Rapid Shot feat); Craft: Bowmaking +12, Skill Focus: Bowmaking, Speak Language: Elvish, Weapon Focus: composite longbow, Point blank Shot, Precise Shot; +1 composite longbow.

    [4E] Bob the Bowyer, Male Human Striker 3 (Archer Ranger)
    Dex: 16, Con: 13, Int: 15, Cha: 8; H.P.: 20, AL: Good
    ...etc.

    So, just the high points (and low points, if any). Leave it to DMs to fill in the rest, as they wish.
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    Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:27 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    We really do not need to know this level of detail, just settle on something that seems remotely, as this village will already be much more realistically reasonable than any village yet detailed in any Greyhawk adventure. Which is fine...

    A to how many deer one can kill in a 3 mile radius before they run out, apparently quite few, as my uncle has to open his property to hunters every year to keep the population down, and they take out 100+ deer annually. Just from his property (which is but of fraction of 27 square miles in size). Consider a vastly larger area, and spread out the numbers to two deer a week, and we have a more reasonable level of deer hunting for the village"...


    -Out of a population of 267, and assuming 70-80 part-time hunters, that could be 2 deer a year without any real problem. "Replacements" could come from the wider Gamboge, which is lightly hunted (I think). Add in the smaller game, and a typical family has a nice meat/leather/fur supplement at certain times of the year.

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...So, there is no need for "The Trapper".


    -Ah! "No need for the trapper" is not the same thing as "no trapper". Considering the amount of game we're going to accept as harvestable, then Sutemi's full-time trapper is reasonable. The other possibility is that the trapper is not a full time resident, but an NPC who passes through frequently (an opening for NPCs above the 267 regular inhabitants).

    Either way, perhaps he has a connection (or lives with, if an outsider) a group of elves or gnomes? A local religion (TBD)? The Nyrondese? The Pale? A humanoid group? The connection is not neccessarily public...

    Anyway, a full-time trapper is more likley than a full-time glassblower, who is more likely than a full-time dragon tamer. Razz

    EDIT:

    Cebrion wrote:


    ...I think the job of herbalist/midwife/healer could be rolled into a the duties of a nature priestess/druid...


    -I'd still like to plug for my "dueling midwives", perhaps based on religion/culture. One could be a druidess (Beory/Old Religion, perhaps, probably N and Flann), and the other one could be something else (Merrika, since it is her bailiwick, probably LG or NG and Oeridian). With 267 people (60-90 women of child bearing age?), neither one would be full time.
    GreySage

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    Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:05 am  

    Cebrion, you have the project "rolling." Under "this" description, there are several "professionals" that can be combined into one person. That will help to make them all that more valuable to the community and help keep the population down. Wink

    I think our Mason fits this description perfectly. He does things other than Masonry -- to support himself and family -- but he's the guy people "go to" to get their fireplaces built. Happy

    As I said in another thread, I will only stat my characters in 3.5, since that seems -- to me -- to be the most popular edition. And conversions to other editions can be made by the DM.
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    Sat Mar 23, 2013 5:48 pm  

    Yes, I think we are really, really close at this point. I need to collect everything into a brief, such that only a few last things then need to be added.

    As to stats for whatever edition, people are free to include what they want to, or not. I am just going to be as inclusive as I possibly can.
    jamesdglick wrote:
    Either way, perhaps he has a connection (or lives with, if an outsider) a group of elves or gnomes? A local religion (TBD)? The Nyrondese? The Pale? A humanoid group? The connection is not necessarily public...

    There is a gnomish connection and an elvish connection, though there is no need for secrecy. The Gambogefolk are fiercely independent of outsiders seeking to subjugate them, not fiercely independent of each other, and they want outsiders to know that. Remember that the Gambogefolk have aspirations of nationhood. As such, they probably get on with one another rather well.
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    Sat Mar 23, 2013 10:58 pm  

    Cebrion wrote:


    So, there is no need for "The Trapper".


    I think what we have here is a difference of an opinion about the importance of PC classes.
    I always want to view PC classes, such as the ranger, as rare and powerful. There are so few of them and most of them only do important stuff. PC classes drive a limo and NPC classes drive a taxi.

    I strongly disagree with your view about 3.x Bob the Bowyer. As a second level ranger Bob is a powerful individual. He's a passionate hunter of his favored enemies. Unless he's aged or a cripple, he's not going to make bows. He's on the move.

    Let me explain my view:
    Hunting and trapping is only done by druids and rangers. There will be less than 1% of the whole kingdom who can do these things. I'm sorry, but technically commoners can't do this. They don't have the necessary skills. You can say many things about IRL, but if you create a 1st-level commoner and try to hunt food using the game mechanics, it doesn't work.

    This is why I support the idea that we have druids and rangers who are the Chuck Norris types, kicking arse and then we have few selected experts who do less important stuff.

    This is why I think it's vital for the game mechanics and for the game world verisimilitude that we have trappers here and there, who are non-combatant survivalists.

    "I don't know about a merchant. Be more specific in what you mean by "merchant", as the term could be applied in various ways. What will such a person exactly be doing? "

    I mean a shopkeeper. The village would have a shop for dry goods. A minor general store.
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    Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:49 am  

    Sutemi wrote:
    Hunting and trapping is only done by druids and rangers.


    This will be "news" to all the people living in the southern United States. "Only 'special' people are able to hunt, trap and fish!" I'm with Cebrion on this one.

    The "common people" are people that your PCs will never talk to! The few statted NPCs that we are creating are the people that a DM's PCs will interact with, talk to, ask for advice: "Do you know where that old temple is?"

    The Ranger is someone that the PCs will talk to for information on the Gamboge, not hunting. So it is not necessary for him to be "the hunter" for the village. With sheep, goats, pigs and a few cows, the villagers will never need deer meat (venison) to "survive." They will be living quite well without it.

    Venison will be nothing more than what it is to people in the south today -- a "nice treat," something "different" to eat, every now and again.

    To me, Rangers are "less special" in this sense: Any man moving into the forest to live on his own is going to become one of two things . . . a "Ranger," or dead. It's called starvation. Jeremiah Johnson was a "Ranger." What special training did he receive? Confused

    Our Ranger is there for advising the PCs, not to hunt food for the village. The villagers would view him as a glorified "Gardener" . . . he "takes care" of their portion of the Gamboge in various ways; such as keeping it free of Orcs, or Bugbears.

    They do not look to him/her for food.
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    Sun Mar 24, 2013 6:05 am  

    I understand but game-mechanically it doesn't work like that. If I'm the DM and you play a 1st-level commoner and try to hunt food using the mechanics as given, it will be very sad. I have this set of mind that I like to work within the system, not as how we see the world.
    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:37 am  

    Sutemi wrote:
    If I'm the DM and you play a 1st-level commoner and try to hunt food using the mechanics as given . . .


    You have Players who wish to role play . . . "Commoners?" Shocked

    Are you foreseeing a time when one of your characters is going to wish to portray a commoner of our village? Confused

    What about your "regular" players? As a DM are you really so foolish as to think ANY DAMN BODY can carry that much food? In spite of the fact that you never "role" play it, your characters HUNT for food every game you play.

    Now, since we both know that you DO NOT have a "Ranger" in every game, why is it that your players haven't yet starved to death, o' beneficent DM? Because your 1st level Fighter does not have better hunting skills than does your 1st level commoner. So, I ask again, how is it that your 1st level Adventuring party has avoided starving to death out there in the Mist Marsh? The Lorridges? The Gnarley Forest? Because according to the "game mechanics" . . . they will!

    I don't mean to insult you, but "game mechanics?" For NPC commoners? What, all of our "farmers" now need Craft: "Butcher," in order to slaughter their own herd animals? Special skinning abilities may be needed by the Tanner who wishes to preserve the hide for making leather products, but not by the "hungry man" who just wishes to get to the meat/food part of the animal.

    And incidentally -- take it from a southern boy/hunter -- it only takes practice to properly skin an animal. I'm quite sure our "shepherd" has plenty of practice sheering and skinning . . . sheep -- which is no different than skinning deer. No difference what-so-ever.

    So what the heck are you talking about? rolleyes
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    Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:15 pm  

    As a paladin of Heironeous, I'll attempt to be more courteous than our curmudgeonly scholar, but I do agree with his assessment. Cool

    Game mechanics are only intended to represent what PCs are competently capable of, not what commoners can do. It wasn't until edition 3.x that the Expert NPC class was introduced, and that was specifically so that DMs didn't have to make every village blacksmith a retired Fighter to avoid having the PCs bully him around. rolleyes

    If you want real-world, look to the thread asking forum members to list their own skills. Real world medieval commoners would have many skills that ranked in the expert level, but they are irrelevant to game mechanics simply because this isn't a game of Households and Horse Apples. No one (well, few, anyway) cares that the local commoners are experts at building wattle and daub houses, nor that the local wives have perfected a system whereby they take turns watching each other's children while washing their family's clothing in a sluece in the nearby stream. Hunting is, generally, another example of those mundane chores that doesn't bear role-playing in a game where the objective is to kill orcs, zombies, and dragons.

    My point is that 'game mechanics' fails to fairly represent the variety of skills commoners would possess in such a world as Greyhawk, if it truly existed. Even our PCs would have myriad additional skills, but it is assumed that they can all cook an edible meal over a campfire without taking ranks in Cook, etc. The skills listed in the game are those applicable to adventuring, not to a mundane existence. So, yes, nearly every commoner over 12 in our village should have some competence (ranks) in skills like woodcutter, cook, trapper, hunter, herder, farmer, seamstress, leatherworker, tanner, builder, climb, swim, acrobatics, knowledge (nature), knowledge (local), etc., etc. It is simply not necessary to assume that every individual without at least 2 or 3 levels in a PC class is without adequate experience to be skilled at anything.

    SirXaris
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    Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:14 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    As a paladin of Heironeous, I'll attempt to be more courteous than our curmudgeonly scholar, but I do agree with his assessment.


    Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked

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    Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    Sun Mar 24, 2013 6:09 pm  

    I think Sutemi has fallen into the classic trap of "rules dictate behavior". Well, it would be more accurate to say that he has fallen the trap of "perception", as the rules very much contradict him. In 1E anybody can have any sort of skills/background (it is just background fluff). In 2E, a non-class non-weapon proficiency simply costs an extra proficiency slot, and there are Secondary Skills too, but not having class levels doesn't also mean that 0-level folks know nothing (the 2E DMG provides more info on this). In 3.X, cross-class skills are limited in their effectiveness, but anybody can still learn pretty much anything. 4E is similar. What we see is that not a single thing is outright disallowed. The rules make allowances for, well, everything. Not only Rangers and Druids hunt and trap stuff. Anyone can hunt and trap stuff- they will just not necessarily be as good at it. Also, just because a Ranger hates goblins doesn't mean that he's on a 24/7 mission to eradicate them from the World of Greyhawk. He's just extra pissed off when he actually runs into any, and if he hears about any goblins prowling about locally, he will probably go out and see about collecting a few of their ears.

    Just to throw Sutemi a bone Razz, yes , I did envision "Bob the Bowyer" as being about 60+ years old, but still rather hale, and, yes, at his level, he is what would be considered a powerful individual. He's not exactly Aragorn though.

    This village is probably going to have a few more level 1-4 people than one might normally find though, because these people have to take care of themselves after all. If they have trouble, which they occasionally do, nobody is coming to help them unless they can get somebody through to another village, the elves, or the gnomes (and I've already decided that the elves an gnomes are 2+ days away into the forest). Now, this doesn't mean that every single villager is level 1-4, just that a few dozen may have class levels (in the 1E sense).
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:11 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Jeremiah Johnson was a "Ranger." What special training did he receive? Confused


    Well there was the Bear Training at the cabin........... Wink Laughing

    Seriously, I'm with the consensus on this.... ALL hearty souls living there would have ranks in various "survival" skills.. (to use a 3.xx interpretation) If they didn't they would simply not survive.
    We are, as also pointed out, trying to define those that may have 'honed" those skills (and others abilities) that would make them the resident experts as judged by their piers. And these "exceptionals" to more likely refered to if traveling PCs inquire "commons" for information.
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:12 am  

    To give another example: The "average" Priest leading a congregation -- a country church -- is only 3rd level, though he be 70 years old.

    The premise to all Editions -- as far as I know -- is that "levels" are attained through adventuring. This is something that the "average" village Priest isn't going to be doing. It's also why you -- usually -- have to go to a "major city" in order to have your dead companion Raised or Resurrected.

    Then there's Derider Fanshen, Constable of Greyhawk -- Priest (Cleric) 12th level. I have three characters that cannot -- yet -- kick her butt! I've got another dozen that can. And remember, she's the Constable of a major metropolitan area, not a simple village. By comparison, any "constable" type "professional" person our village might have wouldn't be more than 2nd, or 3rd level. Wink

    The NPCs of our village -- or any other -- are not going to be anywhere near as "powerful" as the PCs that visit.

    Sure, the occasional Module provides one: "Always assume that "Magician X" is several levels more powerful than your PCs" . . . but that's not what we're doing "here."

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    Well there was the Bear Training at the cabin . . .


    Okay, you got me with that one! Razz

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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:09 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    ...Game mechanics are only intended to represent what PCs are competently capable of, not what commoners can do. It wasn't until edition 3.x that the Expert NPC class was introduced...


    -I think the kernel for the Expert was the AD&D1 Dungeoneer's Survival Guide allowed for Craftsmen with (IIRC) d6 at various level of skill, plus lots of proficiencies.

    SirXaris wrote:
    ...and that was specifically so that DMs didn't have to make every village blacksmith a retired Fighter to avoid having the PCs bully him around...


    -I don't think it was just to keep PCs from attacking NPCs. One other reason was if the PCs hired an NPC, you'd know how good a job he could do. The other was if the NPC got attacked by other NPCs, as in a robbery, assassination attempt, or a raid, that you'd know what they could do. Of course, you'd have to ask the author of the DSG (Doug Niles?).

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Sutemi wrote:
    If I'm the DM and you play a 1st-level commoner and try to hunt food using the mechanics as given . . .


    You have Players who wish to role play . . . "Commoners?" Shocked


    -I think Sutemi means that if you were to try to figure out how a 1st level Commoner would do at hunting, that he'd be bad at it, thus:

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...Not only Rangers and Druids hunt and trap stuff. Anyone can hunt and trap stuff- they will just not necessarily be as good at it...


    ...but even that's not necessarily so. For Sutemi:

    Human Com1 (12I, 12W) would have 16 skill points, which could include Survival +2 (and a +1 bonus for WIS), Profession (Hunter) +4 (and a +1 bonus for WIS), and Knowledge (Nature) +1 (and a +1 bonus for INT), leaving six points for other stuff (Survival and Knowledge being non-class skills). He gets one simple weapon feat (Light Crossbow), and his two feats could be Track and Endurance, or maybe Great Fortitude instead. Another alternative would be Stealthy. More than enough to track and hunt any conventional game.

    There's also 1st level Expert, for whom it's even easier, since every skill is a class skill.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Sutemi wrote:
    If I'm the DM and you play a 1st-level commoner and try to hunt food using the mechanics as given . . .


    You have Players who wish to role play . . . "Commoners?" Shocked


    -Actually, I wouldn't want to be a 1st level Commoner, but I have wanted to play a PC (or DM a PC) where they just try to get by and live to a ripe old age- how many PCs survive to age 60? Razz Play in the year CY 610! Razz Conventional adventure may come up every so often, but getting the harvest in or making a profit would actually be interesting to me on an intrinsic level, and perhaps also because I've enjoyed enough of the other type of adventure IRL. Laughing Confused


    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ... Jeremiah Johnson was a "Ranger." What special training did he receive? Confused ...


    -He probably was, down to "Favored Enemy: Crow" (or probably "Indians"):

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liver-Eating_Johnson

    ...I'd say he was a 2nd or 3rd level Expert who had picked up the necessary Ranger skills (tracking, animal stuff) over several years of OJT on the frontier. He just needed another level, and to pick a favored enemy when along came the Crow... Evil Grin

    If you're doing D&D 3X, then an alternative would be to make him a Expert/Scout instead of Expert/Ranger.
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:18 am  

    Thank you James, it seems that you got my drift. I tried to explain as well as could and I'm happy that you understood me.

    I agree 100% with your calculations. The problem is that life is extremely demanding for a villager and he is so weak (in all imaginable ways) that taking cross-class skills such as survival is hardly an option. It doesn't matter if he has +3 skill modifier or +0 in survival, he cannot make the cut to be a hunter or a trapper.

    This is why I gave up commoners completely for Dry Steppes. The average Baklun there is an Expert 1/Warrior 1 - at minimum.

    I always like to go precisely by the book. This is why I insist that we need plenty of Experts as trappers because druids and rangers are so few (according to DMG) and commoners are almost useless in that role (due to the class and its class skills).
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:25 am  

    hfdjkfhdjh
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:48 am  

    Sutemi wrote:
    ...This is why I insist that we need plenty of Experts as trappers because druids and rangers are so few (according to DMG) and commoners are almost useless in that role (due to the class and its class skills).


    1) FWIW, I think that the example I gave of a 1st level Commoner, whose primary gig is hunting, fares well at hunting in most places, particularly if he's young. Against a Bugbear, he'd probably lose. That's why he has feet and a mouth: He can run back to the village for safety, yelling for help as he goes, which is where the more powerful NPCs, combined with the superior numbers of the village, and perhaps the assistance of the PCs, comes in;

    2) IIRC, according to FtA, something like 75% of the inhabitants of the Gnarley are 1st level or higher Rangers, and there's a similar level of skill for the Grandwood and the Lone Heath in Ivid the Undying. The Gamboge might not be as challenging to survival as those places (particularly the Grandwood and the Lone Heath), but I don't see anything wrong with making a large proportion (maybe a majority) of the villagers 1st or 2nd level Experts, with a good sprinkling of 3rd level. Cebrion already seems to agree. A disproportionate number will also be Rangers or Scouts, and maybe Rogues (AD&D Thieves) of the backwoods variety. 1st level Commoners, after age 18, might be in the minority, since they'll have enough On the Job Training/School of Hard Knocks to qualify for a different class, and those over 30 will often be 2nd level or higher.



    Sutemi wrote:
    ...This is why I gave up commoners completely for Dry Steppes. The average Baklun there is an Expert 1/Warrior 1 - at minimum...


    -Even the teenagers?!

    Maybe you need to lighten up on your outdoor encounters...
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 10:12 am  

    Good points James.

    The outdoorsy commoner who you have presented is an interesting option. However, consider this: Since he/she has been trained for the outdoors life, maybe it would be natural that he/she has become an expert or ranger, instead of learning survival at a slow rate because he/she is a commoner? It's like giving a person the professional training X, but calling that person with the professional title Y. Maybe it would be more fitting just to be X?

    But I do see your point and the outdoorsy commoner is a good choice. I just think that a few Expert huntsmen/trappers would be an easier choice. They wouldn't be so clumsy and limited as the commoner huntsmen, but more like rangers without combat skills. That sounds better for me, at least.

    And about teenagers:
    According to DMG all calculations regarding population are done according to adult population, always. First you figure out the adult population of a population center and then you figure out their classes and levels. Children, adolescents etc. are considered non-combatants and generally not statted in any way. Certainly no classes are given. Also a teenager is a very loose term... A half-orc barbarian can become a mid-level character or even higher before his/her 16th birthday. If you don't mind, I will not comment this age thing more than this. I don't find it very fruitful, even though I was the first the bring it up in this thread.
    GreySage

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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 10:40 am  

    Well, you guys are too far out in left field for me. The Great Metropolis of Greyhawk was built and inhabited by Commoners.

    According to your mathematics . . . the City of Greyhawk does not exist. Cry

    Do what you want, but I strongly advise both of you not to hold your breathes waiting for me to stat out all the commoners in my piece.

    NOT HAPPENING!

    And I do not agree with your reasoning, so don't expect me to use your villagers . . . I won't.

    I'm not interested in the fact that you think they are Rules when I know they are Guidelines. Add to that the fact that it's a medieval game and you two are obviously hung up on 21st Century B.S. and thought patterns.
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:17 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Well, you guys are too far out in left field for me. The Great Metropolis of Greyhawk was built and inhabited by Commoners...


    -The City of Greyhawk, or a feudal manor in Aerdi or Veluna is not like the Lone Heath, the Grandwood, the Gnarley, and the Gamboge. In the Flaneass, as in real life, dangerous and challenging circumstances require people who can hack it. It's what you're trying to say here:

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ... To me, Rangers are "less special" in this sense: Any man moving into the forest to live on his own is going to become one of two things . . . a "Ranger," or dead. It's called starvation. Jeremiah Johnson was a "Ranger." ...


    ...but you and Sutemi are exaggerating a little. You don't have to be a ranger (or scout, or rogue) to "move through the forest, nor do you have to be second level. But it helps.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...According to your mathematics . . . the City of Greyhawk does not exist....


    -Ther physical labor which built the walls and buildings may have been provided with (mostly) 1st and 2nd level Commoners, but they needed Experts and spellcasters to do the fine work. Nor or 1st and 2nd level Commoners the mainstay of its security. One of the advantages of "civilzation" (e.g., a big city or feudal society) is that it allows medicocre people to survive ( Laughing ), because there's a giant pool of talent and bodies to handle the hard stuff. If you're in the backwoods, everyone has to step up a little more. Maybe not "3rd level Ranger" step up, but maybe "2nd level Expert" step up.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    I'm not interested in the fact that you think they are Rules when I know they are Guidelines...


    -What rules and what guidelines?! You're trying to say that you know what class and level average people in our imaginary village would have. That's sort of like setting a rule.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...Add to that the fact that it's a medieval game and you two are obviously hung up on 21st Century B.S. and thought patterns.


    1) The Flaneass is not medieval, but pseudo-medieval, unless you believe in magic, orcs, dragons, and gods whose primary interest is "Insanity". Laughing

    2) I can't post for Sutemi, but through what could be called "experience" and "study" I have a pretty good idea of the difference in combat skills between different types of people. That's not 21st century, or medieval, or quasi medieval, but pretty universa,l down through the ages (Does that sound pompous? Oh well! Razz ). Another way to look at it, is that these villagers face challenges, and more importantly, OVERCOME challenges, than most Greyhawker laborers or Aerdi peasants ever will. So they would tend to be a little better than Commoners, and tend to have a greater proportion of 2nd and 3rd level types than you would find in Greyhawk or Aerdi.

    3 (EDIT) ) Since you brought up "21st Century B.S.":

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    I didn't make anyone's "point."

    My father has a sub-Contractor's License for Masonry because that's the only test (yes, there's a test for the License) that he can pass. My uncle Francis has a sub-Contractor's License for Plumbing, my uncle Donovan for Carpentry, my uncle Denis for Roofing, my uncle Randolph for Electrical.

    They usually worked on the same houses and I ended up working with each of them in my time. So, I am the only one who can pass the General Contractor's test. I'm am the only one who can answer questions regarding all of those trades. Questions?

    The tests are standardized by O.S.H.A., the Occupational Safety and Health Administration -- otherwise known as the Federal Government.

    Let's try a little Masonry: 1) What are wall-ties? 2) How often are wall-ties applied? *

    My friend, Sam, grew-up learning to lay brick with his father. He's a brick-layer, nothing more. He calls me to do anything else he might need done. And that's how it is -- father to son. I'm one of the few who grew-up doing it all. (At present, in the United States, the average age of trained brick-layers is 62. One day, you folks won't be able to get a brick house -- there won't be anyone around who knows how to do it anymore.)

    Most people go to school to become General Contractors. A General Contractor needs to know how it is done, he doesn't necessarily need to be able to actually do it. I consider myself fortunate that I actually am capable of performing the work, when most General Contractors are not.

    The Miller's son is not learning how to farm, he's working in his father's mill. The Carpenter's son is not learning to mill, he's working in his father's Carpentry Shop. The kid's of the village are not growing up learning to do everything.

    And for you do-it-yourself guys -- you "work" is in violation of every code there is! Meaning? You are allowed, by law, to "fix" your own homes. But you are not allowed to sell that house until your work is "signed off" by a Licensed Contractor, who is not going to risk his reputation or License on your duct tape and bailing wire repairs.

    Sure, you can fix it, but not properly. Neither can everyone in the village do it "properly." That's why some of those wattle fences are better built than others. You are aware, are you not, that everyone of those fireplaces in those log cabins filled the room with smoke, aren't you? Hollywood doesn't show that because you wouldn't be able to see the actors' faces. So, no, those mountain men could not "really" build a fireplace for their log cabin. Needless to say, such fireplaces were grossly inefficient at providing heat, which is why many of them froze to death.

    And it was the 1960's -- what child labor laws? Besides at 50 cents a day, $2.50 a week, I was the richest kid in my neighborhood. I could buy more candy than anybody!

    Today? I let you guys pay the plumber $75 an hour to fix "that." Same for the Electrician -- except he charges more. Evil Grin

    And who do you know that got their bathroom completely remodeled -- plumbing, electrical, carpentry, sheet rock, floor tile, old fashioned cast iron tub replaced with a walk-in shower for her two knee surgeries, newly installed, wall-mounted gas heater, cabinets, vanity, toilet -- for nothing more than the cost of materials, other than my Aunt? Hmm?

    No complaints here. Cool

    Okay, I'm finished ranting. Especially as some probably still don't understand what I'm talking about. After all, it's just a game about magic . . . logic need not apply, nor does it even have a place here.

    * Wall-ties are small metal strips, 8" long, used to "tie" two wall together. In the case of wood and masonry, every stud, every 7 courses of brick. Two brick walls, every 16", every 7 courses of brick.

    The wall-ties are attached to the stud with 8 penny nails, or screws, then bent over the brick work, with the end folded so as to stick into one of the holes in the brick, which is then filled with masonry.

    Brick walls, the two ends are folded over, forming a square "U" shape, stuck down into the holes in the brick, which are then filled with masonry.

    Many of today's "not trained properly" brick-layers skip over that part -- in violation of the law. But they're cheaper than me, so you hire them. You hire me when -- in 2 or 3 years -- their wall literally falls down. (Many of you need learn your lessons the "hard way." Sad really. It ends up costing you a great deal more trying to "skimp" the first time.)


    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...And I do not agree with your reasoning, so don't expect me to use your villagers . . . I won't...


    -DM's prerogative, but go ahead and use them. It won't hurt you! Laughing

    EDIT: Keep in mind, you're not the primary objective. It's Ceb'! Wink Laughing
    GreySage

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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:09 pm  

    jamesdglick finally mentioned the fact that Commoner is an NPC class in 3.x. I find it funny, looking over the level progression table, that a person could somehow attain 20th level in Commoner. Razz

    However, it does provide us with another solution to the problem sutemi is having and one that Mystic-Scholar might be better able to accept. We all know old people nowadays that are simply much more awesome than the average person. Frequently, it is because they were once soldiers, but many times it is because they lived through amazing difficulties or accomplished incredible things without any formal training. For example, my maternal grandfather built a log cabin on the side of a mountain outside Anchorage after WWII by himself and raised his family by hunting, trapping, fishing, panning/mining for gold, etc. - all skills he learned growing up as a boy in southern Missouri, not as a soldier in the war. Perhaps your grandmother told you stories of surviving the Dust Bowl or your great, great grandmother was a surviving member of the Donner Party. Cool Such people are not 1st level Commoners! Such people, in D&D terms, are 2nd, 3rd, or even 8th level Commoners. That NPC class accounts for the acquisition of extra skill points and a few other, very slowly acquired, bonuses quite nicely without making the NPC tough enough to actually take on the adventurers.

    SirXaris
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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:15 pm  

    smillan_31 wrote:
    Cebrion wrote:
    Oddly enough, the back story of a book I am reading centers on the establishment of a large medieval trading community, and it is mentioning all sorts of issues related to starting certain industries, and a bit of what is required to do so. Kismet, it seems. Happy


    What book? I read Dorothy Dunnet's NiccolÚ Rising and it gave me so many ideas about stuff to do in a campaign to involve characters in trade and industries. I'm always on the lookout for similar books.

    I just looked into NiccolÚ Rising. I may have to pic that up. What I just finished reading was Jan Guilou's Crusades Trilogy (The Road to Jerusalem, The Templar Knight, Birth of the Kingdom). The last book deals with the main character returning from the Holy Land, and the preparations required to build up his own clan in order to secure the peace of the GŲtaland (modern day southern Sweden) by creating a power that it is simply not worth fighting against cost-wise for their enemies. The main character returns home with a large group of henchman, who are mostly trained craftsmen, in order to make this happen. The story goes into some the real issues related to what these craftsmen do, such as needing to trade for specialized supplies they need. For instance, the glass workers (yes, they are in there Laughing) need the right sand to even do their work. The main character goes about establishing a trading hub in order to increase the wealth of the clan to a level that it will be able to properly fortify its holdings, train up modern cavalry units, and have plenty of weapons to outfit an army, in the event that one is needed.

    The book occasionally gives a look into the building up process of the community, so there are some ideas to be taken from it. However, in the book this building up process is being done on a large scale, and so it cannot be applied directly to a small, already established, village. What I can take from it is some of the things that are mentioned in regard to the materials required to do what they are doing. You don't need a mason if there is no stone, so if we want to have a mason that will be doing much of anything, because our village is in a dense forest, the mason needs to be able to get stone from somewhere. It is mostly things like that you might think of while reading these particular sections of the book.

    Other than that, there is plenty of historical fiction written about the Holy Land and Templar Knights, but not a whole lot written about GŲtaland, which peaked my interest further.

    SirXaris wrote:
    Such people are not 1st level Commoners! Such people, in D&D terms, are 2nd, 3rd, or even 8th level Commoners.

    But you see, that is not true. Most basic skills checks are DC 15 or 20, with 25 being extremely difficult. Let's just say that the Donner party wasn't making DC 25 Survival checks to survive. They were making DC 25 Survival checks to find something other than people to eat, and failing miserably (because they were low-level, common schlubs). They didn't survive because they were super awesome high level and were able to make plenty of DC 25 Survival checks, but because they ate people, which they only had to do because they couldn't succeed in making extremely difficult skills checks to not have to do that.

    I would still like to see more ideas for what a mason could do. Being the "chimney guy" is not enough, as people can build chimney's themselves too (just not as well as a mason can). With such a self-sufficient community, there needs to be a decent variety of jobs for a mason to be viable as a stand alone professional. Current ideas: stone work on homes, such as floors, basements, walls, and chimneys; millstones; bridges; village walls/defenses; slate roof tiles perhaps; any other ideas?
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    GreySage

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    Mon Mar 25, 2013 11:55 pm  

    Cebrion wrote:
    SirXaris wrote:
    Such people are not 1st level Commoners! Such people, in D&D terms, are 2nd, 3rd, or even 8th level Commoners.

    But you see, that is not true. Most basic skills checks are DC 15 or 20, with 25 being extremely difficult. Let's just say that the Donner party wasn't making DC 25 Survival checks to survive. They were making DC 25 Survival checks to find something other than people to eat, and failing miserably (because they were low-level, common schlubs). They didn't survive because they were super awesome high level and were able to make plenty of CD 25 Survival checks, but because they ate people, which they only had to do because they couldn't succeed in making extremely difficult skills checks to not have to do that.


    I agree with this, Cebrion. My point was that, having survived such an ordeal by whatever means, they would have earned enough experience points to be higher level Commoners than those that lived a more ordinary, trial free, life.

    SirXaris
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    Tue Mar 26, 2013 7:58 am  

    Cebrion wrote:

    I would still like to see more ideas for what a mason could do. Being the "chimney guy" is not enough, as people can build chimney's themselves too (just not as well as a mason can). With such a self-sufficient community, there needs to be a decent variety of jobs for a mason to be viable as a stand alone professional. Current ideas: stone work on homes, such as floors, basements, walls, and chimneys; millstones; bridges; village walls/defenses; slate roof tiles perhaps; any other ideas?

    I concur with the "detailing out" of backlog work for whatever professionals we decide apon. BUT, this community will, for all intensive purposes, SPRING into being, it will not be a progression. Certainly as a collective of DMs we will have a "backhistory and methodology" to its coming into being. However, the finished product will be a shapshot microcosm as a STARTING point for PCs to encounter. There is nothing saying, and certainly bents on realism, that the "mason" (for purposes of this example) might very well NOT have enough work. Just like any mason building a keep, more are required on the front end of construction than for general maintenance and repair.

    And maybe he decides at this juncture, life in our little community is not as it was and decides to move on.... maybe hiring the PCs as an escort, or just tagging along with PCs to next town? Adventure Hook?

    Maybe his apprentice decides to stay around (because of the local farmers daughter Laughing Wink ) And he dual trades.. providing the mason maintenance while picking up farming from the "inlaws".
    AGAIN, before any go into 'left field' I am not suggesting we career path a multitude of Departure related part time transiant workers, BUT some could very well exist and add flavor to the mix. While only being partly established at their chosen trade. JAT
    All Im conveying is each does not have to have a lifetimes backlog of work to exist, there are those that migrate to the work, as the demand exists.
    Further, all parties at some point encounter hirelings, that become henchmen, or simply become "Crewman #6" because they lack the intestinal fortitude for the PC world. Razz Evil Grin

    Our REAL task at hand gents, is to define a rational to what is there when the PCs arrive. Isn't it?
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:55 pm  

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...I would still like to see more ideas for what a mason could do. Being the "chimney guy" is not enough, as people can build chimney's themselves too (just not as well as a mason can). With such a self-sufficient community, there needs to be a decent variety of jobs for a mason to be viable as a stand alone professional. Current ideas: stone work on homes, such as floors, basements, walls, and chimneys; millstones; bridges; village walls/defenses; slate roof tiles perhaps; any other ideas?


    -If they were constantly improving their defenses, you've got your answer right there.

    That was the one thing Rasgon didn't want. Maybe you should ask his rationale for why they wouldn't have extensive defenses; generally, I'm agnostic on the issue. For labor, they might make it a mandatory part of living in the village, but with the Chaotic alignment tilt most of seem to be heading to? Of course, even chaotics might accept something like that as the prices of not becoming a bugbear's shish-kebab. How much would they be willing to pay for materials? How much can they spare?

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    ...Certainly as a collective of DMs we will have a "backhistory and methodology" to its coming into being. However, the finished product will be a shapshot microcosm as a STARTING point for PCs to encounter... Our REAL task at hand gents, is to define a rational to what is there when the PCs arrive. Isn't it?


    -Actually, Ceb's idea is that the snapshot is CY 576, but most people will set it at a future date. "Updating" it to what it will be in, say CY 582 or CY 590 is "extra credit" (or the DMs job).

    FWIW, I used most "canned" modules in this way.

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    ...There is nothing saying, and certainly bents on realism, that the "mason" (for purposes of this example) might very well NOT have enough work. Just like any mason building a keep, more are required on the front end of construction than for general maintenance and repair.

    And maybe he decides at this juncture, life in our little community is not as it was and decides to move on.... maybe hiring the PCs as an escort, or just tagging along with PCs to next town? Adventure Hook?


    -Flipping your suggestion around might be the out for the "mason" issue. Perhaps the mason hasn't even arrived yet, as of CY 576. Instead, he arrives in CY 578 in order to help build the new, improved inn/blockhouse everyone wants. After he finishes that, he might stick around to work on formal defenses for the village part-time. That could take years; there's the example of the castle in Hommlet. He would also build the occasional nice, stone chimney to make more money. When that's done, maybe one the faiths will build a real, stone temple? Or maybe he just leaves?
    Paladin

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    Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:35 pm  

    jamesdglick wrote:
    -Actually, Ceb's idea is that the snapshot is CY 576, but most people will set it at a future date. "Updating" it to what it will be in, say CY 582 or CY 590 is "extra credit" (or the DMs job).

    FWIW, I used most "canned" modules in this way.
    Yes, but not what I meant... I was implying that even in 576, we wont be having a "ground breaking ceremony".
    Instead, the back history would be already set by the collective here AND be consistant with that point in history moving forward. And IF at that point the mason was leaving that it would still work to have one present at the "beginning of our "story"..
    jamesdglick wrote:
    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    ...And maybe he decides at this juncture, life in our little community is not as it was and decides to move on.... maybe hiring the PCs as an escort, or just tagging along with PCs to next town? Adventure Hook?

    -Flipping your suggestion around might be the out for the "mason" issue. Perhaps the mason hasn't even arrived yet, as of CY 576. Instead, he arrives in CY 578 in order to help build the new, improved inn/blockhouse everyone wants. After he finishes that, he might stick around to work on formal defenses for the village part-time. That could take years; there's the example of the castle in Hommlet. He would also build the occasional nice, stone chimney to make more money. When that's done, maybe one the faiths will build a real, stone temple? Or maybe he just leaves?

    Exactly.. this line of thought is what I was referencing. Could certainly be after.
    I just was seeing a shoehorn effect that everyone is trying to "justify" life spanning careers for those that may not have such in this part of the world.
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:39 pm  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    ...I just was seeing a shoehorn effect that everyone is trying to "justify" life spanning careers for those that may not have such in this part of the world.


    -Yeah. For now, I can't even justify a flash in the pan appearance for a glassblower. Oh well. Laughing
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    Tue Mar 26, 2013 5:09 pm  

    jamesdglick wrote:
    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    ...I just was seeing a shoehorn effect that everyone is trying to "justify" life spanning careers for those that may not have such in this part of the world.


    -Yeah. For now, I can't even justify a flash in the pan appearance for a glassblower. Oh well. Laughing

    I guess I see the opposite here too... I see him/her coming or going as the mason... coming to fill a demand and then either diversifying or leaving... I still think containers , jewlery and such could be supplied and exported, since clay is not a likely source for making pictures, pots and containers. That in combination with the natural source of platinum in the region seems a jeweler/gemcutter/glassblowing gnome would fit nicely. Cool
    granted some containers could be fabricated from wood to make cups and the sort. but wood makes a poor storage container. Leaching its own flavors into the stored item. In some cases this is desireable, others not so much.
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Wed Mar 27, 2013 1:51 am  

    By 576 the village is already about 5 generations old, and so is established and slowly growing. The village will not be in the process of slowly fortifying itself with stone work. They will never have the funding for that. I think I need to add to what I mean. The idea here might be to build two stone pillars to which a sturdy main gate is attached, just so that their attachment points are stronger than to just wooden beams. Either side of those pillars are low wooden palisade fences though. The main resource here is wood, and that is what will be mostly be used for building. Stone will be available from somewhere "nearby", but it will be very costly to bring in. A low palisade wall won't surround the whole village though, just be at some key places. Most areas will usually just have a defensive ditch or a wattle fence. So, consider the village only slightly fortified- it won't be Fort Gamboge. My own Pathfinder GH game won't be starting until 2 weeks from this Sunday, so I'll hopefully have some time to sketch out some basic maps and further descriptions.

    As to the mason, think up some other minor things they could do work on that doesn't involve building mage towers, castles, 30 foot tall curtain walls, or any other buildings/building features. Let's call this person a mason/stoneworker, which ought to open things up a bit more. So, what simple stone stuff could they also make that a woodland farming village would find useful, or what other stone things might be present that a mason/stoneworker would make? Any other less simple things the mason/stoneworker could make that there would be an interest in? Be creative, but try not to get too "out there". Wink
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    Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:04 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    As to the mason, think up some other minor things they could do work on that doesn't involve building mage towers, castles, 30 foot tall curtain walls, or any other buildings/building features. Let's call this person a mason/stoneworker, which ought to open things up a bit more. So, what simple stone stuff could they also make that a woodland farming village would find useful, or what other stone things might be present that a mason/stoneworker would make? Any other less simple things the mason/stoneworker could make that there would be an interest in? Be creative, but try not to get too "out there". Wink


    Chimneys have already been discussed, but our village blacksmith will need a quality forge, which means something a bit more than a home-made chimney. Having the assistance of a knowledgeable mason/stoneworker in the construction of his forge would be of serious benefit to the smith.

    Also, wells typically have their walls reinforced by masonry to prevent them from caving in. Since Cebrion has declared that wells will be the main source of water for the village, this would be a valuable use for a mason's skills.

    SirXaris
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    Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:40 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    By 576 the village is already about 5 generations old, and so is established and slowly growing.



    Good to know..give the signmakers a date to put by Established Wink


    Cebrion wrote:
    As to the mason, think up some other minor things they could do work on

    Paths, Well Wall re-inforcment, If there is a Baker a Stone Hearth might be nice. stone and pestle for the herbalist, or on a larger scale for all that Wheat and Barley Laughing
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:52 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...As to the mason, think up some other minor things they could do work on that doesn't involve building mage towers, castles, 30 foot tall curtain walls, or any other buildings/building features... So, what simple stone stuff could they also make that a woodland farming village would find useful, or what other stone things might be present that a mason/stoneworker would make?


    -Lawn gnomes? Razz

    A permanent drainage ditch would could also double as a defense? But that runs up against costs.

    SirXaris wrote:
    ...Chimneys have already been discussed, but our village blacksmith will need a quality forge, which means something a bit more than a home-made chimney. Having the assistance of a knowledgeable mason/stoneworker in the construction of his forge would be of serious benefit to the smith...


    -Second that.

    How about a potter's kiln?

    SirXaris wrote:
    ...Also, wells typically have their walls reinforced by masonry to prevent them from caving in. Since Cebrion has declared that wells will be the main source of water for the village, this would be a valuable use for a mason's skills...


    -Second that. The second well may have been dug while they were busy shoring up the first.

    How about a cistern?

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    ...
    Cebrion wrote:
    As to the mason, think up some other minor things they could do work on

    Paths, Well Wall re-inforcment, If there is a Baker a Stone Hearth might be nice. stone and pestle for the herbalist, or on a larger scale for all that Wheat and Barley Laughing


    -Paths, maybe; second the well reinforcement (again); baker's hearth, good.

    Maybe the mason could be an NPC who lives in Abbotsford or Woodsedge, and shows up for periodically for odd jobs. He could be their conduit to the Pale. His intent?
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Thu Mar 28, 2013 2:22 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Chimneys have already been discussed, but our village blacksmith will need a quality forge, which means something a bit more than a home-made chimney. Having the assistance of a knowledgeable mason/stoneworker in the construction of his forge would be of serious benefit to the smith.

    Also, wells typically have their walls reinforced by masonry to prevent them from caving in. Since Cebrion has declared that wells will be the main source of water for the village, this would be a valuable use for a mason's skills.

    SirXaris

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    Paths, Well Wall re-reinforcement, If there is a Baker a Stone Hearth might be nice. stone and pestle for the herbalist, or on a larger scale for all that Wheat and Barley Laughing

    It will be the rare...er... inept professional who for some reason does not have the basic tools of their trade, so an herbalist will already have a mortar and pestle, and other things they need. If there is a baker, the baker will already have a hearth, not need one. There has been a blacksmith's forge and wells in the village for 90+ years. We don't need to know things that a mason/stoneworker could have built, and that have been around since the village's inception, but *new* things to be built by a mason/stoneworker. Besides, a Blacksmith doesn't need to mason to build their forge any more than a Boywer needs a woodworker to make his wooden forming tools either. Those things are going to be made by them, and making them is probably one of the last things that they must demonstrate that they can make before leaving their apprenticeships, as they are required to even practice their trades.

    Professionals will often know how to make their own tools, with some notable exceptions, namely stoneworkers and woodworkers not knowing how to forge/temper the metal tools that they use. They surely will know what shape and properties those tools need to have though, such that they can tell a Blacksmith exactly how they need to be made. Such specialty tools as these are expensive, and are usually awarded to these workers upon completion of their apprenticeships. There are still some tools that they will be able to make themselves though. There is no need to go into further examples of this, as it will just go off on an unnecessary tangent. Laughing

    So, for the Mason/Stoneworker (and any other crafts people, if you are so inclined), think of things that could be made by them now, not things that could have been made by them in the past. This is not just for my benefit, but for those who may end up writing up some of the Professionals entries. Wink
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    Thu Mar 28, 2013 5:49 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    So, for the Mason/Stoneworker (and any other crafts people, if you are so inclined), think of things that could be made by them now, not things that could have been made by them in the past. This is not just for my benefit, but for those who may end up writing up some of the Professionals entries. Wink

    Big C, While I agree with your points, I guess I should have framed my comment differently, I penned based on the comment that the mason, baker, etc, would only just be arriving as an establishment not as a transient worker or endproduct peddler in 576.
    As jamesdglick wrote:
    -Flipping your suggestion around might be the out for the "mason" issue. Perhaps the mason hasn't even arrived yet, as of CY 576.

    And by arriving only at the "dawn" of our setting would require such items (and others) as you have listed that they could not port in or wish to upgrade. I think 5 generations would be sufficently established for a mason to arrive to begin "improvements" such as hearths, gates, fireplaces, paths, etc
    But creating personna that have been there the whole of 5 generations and adding new arrivals (other than PCs) it will add plot elements and "rumors heard" as the old scrutinize the new. Anyone that has traveled to small town USA can tell you what that is like... EVERYONE knows your in town and speculate as to why. And for some townies.. now matter how long you live there, you're still an outsider if you were not born there. Wink
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Thu Mar 28, 2013 7:46 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...It will be the rare...er... inept professional who for some reason does not have the basic tools of their trade, so an herbalist will already have a mortar and pestle, and other things they need. If there is a baker, the baker will already have a hearth, not need one. There has been a blacksmith's forge and wells in the village for 90+ years. We don't need to know things that a mason/stoneworker could have built, and that have been around since the village's inception, but *new* things to be built by a mason/stoneworker...


    1) I thought DLG's mortar & pestle was a joke. I still do. Wink

    2) The blacksmith may have been there for decades, but the baker may be new, meeting the demands of a growing village. Can anyone think of a reason that the old forge might need replacing? Wells can use re-shoring from time to time. It depends.
    Paladin

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    Thu Mar 28, 2013 10:37 am  

    jamesdglick wrote:
    ..
    1) I thought DLG's mortar & pestle was a joke. I still do. Wink

    It was ... but hey every home needs the "new and improved" ULTRA PESTLE... It grinds, it crushes, it pounds.... and yours today for only 19.95,,, plus Dragonmail delivery ofcourse.
    jamesdglick wrote:
    ..
    2) The blacksmith may have been there for decades, but the baker may be new, meeting the demands of a growing village. Can anyone think of a reason that the old forge might need replacing? Wells can use re-shoring from time to time. It depends.

    Not necessarily, it is plausable with the abundance of wood resources that most Iron type tools could be ported in or sold via travelers... as to replacing the forge.... not really even today, most modern glass forges/ furnaces run 24/7 for decades... It could require "expanding" due to the increase in and varied new demands...
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:48 am  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:

    ...It was ... but hey every home needs the "new and improved" ULTRA PESTLE... It grinds, it crushes, it pounds.... and yours today for only 19.95,,, plus Dragonmail delivery ofcourse...


    -"Look at Kelly grind, grind, grind!"

    "Buy now, and you get not one, not two, but THREE new and improved ULTRA PESTLES!"

    ...btw, is that 19.95 basics, or silver moons? Laughing

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...

    ...At this point, I am going to lay out some basic information on the village.

    So, after having rolled some dice (yes, I really did), the population will be made up of 267 hardy souls (about 45 families, plus other individuals)...The village itself is comprised of 50+ structures, including some located farther out from the village proper...


    ...and...

    Cebrion wrote:
    Yes, that 267 is total populace, not just adults, but this is for the village proper. There are few additional folks living on the fringes of the village. The numbers "100 males : 87 females : 80 children" is about right, but some of those "men" and "women" are teenagers. For our purposes, let us say that "children" are 13 and under, and "adults" are 14 and over...


    -Assuming minimal magical influence, if there are 55 structures and 267 people, then between 30 and 45 of those structures, and between 150-210 of the people would be oriented primarily toward food/clothing material (wool and leather) production (they can hunt, trap, etc on the side). That leaves between 57 and 117 people (including children) and 10-25 structures for specialized houses of worship (some will just be someone's home), the inevitable inn, blacksmith, and mill, plus all the other trades, arts, crafts, professions, and businesses (who can raise a few livestock and/or keep a small garden on the side). That's actually quite a lot of "miscellaneous" people.

    One thing to watch is to not overdo the horses and oxen, who need quite a bit of food and fodder to maintain (no, grazing doesn't cut it for work animals--the Indians tried it. Theere's a reason they lost Wink Laughing ). Whatever grain gets raised often winds up feeding the critters. Not sustainable, unless you're going to cart it in from the outside. Of course, carting stuff requires livestock, who in turn require feed and fodder, which in turn...
    GreySage

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    Sat Apr 06, 2013 12:16 pm  

    jamesdglick wrote:
    not overdo the horses and oxen, who need quite a bit of food and fodder to maintain . . . grazing doesn't cut it for work animals


    Some 80% of the U.S. corn crop goes to feeding live stock, not people. Wink

    So it's back to "just how much cleared land does the village have?" It is all relative. If "we" are growing enough grain for oxen and horses and brewing, then I must ask -- again -- what damn forest? Shocked

    For this reason, I agree that the number of "livestock" needs to be limited in the village. Plow animals should dominate with no "Livery Stable" with horses for rent. Twenty, or so, plow animals are going to eat up enough grain. Confused

    This will enhance interaction with the individual villagers. Any PCs arriving on horseback, of with pack animals, will need to negotiate with the individual farmers in ore to acquire hay and/or grain for their animals. Evil Grin
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    Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:02 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...So it's back to "just how much cleared land does the village have?" It is all relative. If "we" are growing enough grain for oxen and horses and brewing, then I must ask -- again -- what damn forest?


    -Well, the Gamboge is pretty big...

    If a horse eats 8 pounds of feed (oats?) and 8 pounds of fodder (hay? buts lets go for grazing grass) per day, that's 2,950 pounds of each per year. Assume one horse per house, and 55 houses, that's 162,250 pounds of grass per year.

    Assuming 200 pounds of grass per acre, thats 128,000 pounds of grass per square mile. That's a little over one and one-quarter square miles needed for grazing land.

    Now, excellent medieval farming yielded 600 pounds of grain per acre per average growing season (we'll assume that the Gamboge has excellent soil and an average growing season). 100 of those pounds were required for next year's seed (i.e. a 6:1 yield), leaving 500 pounds per acre. That comes out to a little over 320 acres, or a little over half a square mile, to raise horsefeed.

    Total for 55 horses: A little less than two square miles. Of course the Unnamed Village is a few miles within the woodline. That doesn't include area to graze other livestock, or crops for people or other livestock.

    Of course, the yield might not be as good as I've made it. OTOH, magic could augment the productivity.

    Or, you could have fewer horse:

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...For this reason, I agree that the number of "livestock" needs to be limited in the village. Plow animals should dominate with no "Livery Stable" with horses for rent. Twenty, or so, plow animals are going to eat up enough grain...


    -Agreed.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    ...This will enhance interaction with the individual villagers. Any PCs arriving on horseback, of with pack animals, will need to negotiate with the individual farmers in ore to acquire hay and/or grain for their animals. Evil Grin


    -Depending on who has a surplus, I hope the PCs either know some Flan, or can handle broken Common. Of course, when you deal with someone who isn't to good at the language, MISUNDERSTANDINGS WILL HAPPEN. Heh heh heh... Evil Grin
    GreySage

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    Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:20 am  

    I believe we need a village tyromancer.

    https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Grandiloquent-Word-of-the-Day/479146505433648

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPN3KTtrnZM

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    Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:33 am  

    Hey, I'm all for a "wise woman" who foretells the future via a block of cheese. Wink Evil Grin Laughing

    @ Jamesdglick -- Grazing takes one acre per large animal. More . . . if you want to gather hay. Shocked

    @ SirXaris -- I've added a blog to my signature. No stopping the "monster" now! Wink

    All hail Dread Tharizdun!
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    Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:31 am  

    I have begun chewing on all of the replies here and elsewhere. A rough map is taking shape as well. If anybody wants to sketch out some generic locations and send them to me, I'll fit them in. The cud must be chewed well and then pass through five stomachs before it is ready though, so you do have some time. Laughing
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    Mon Apr 08, 2013 5:47 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    The cud must be chewed well and then pass through five stomachs before it is ready though, so you do have some time.


    So very true! Laughing

    Cebrion wrote:
    If anybody wants to sketch out some generic locations and send them to me, I'll fit them in.


    Hmm, I think a "general" outline map of the village would necessary to establish "placement" of particular domiciles. Do you already have something along those lines?

    Off hand, I think the "common" (water) well should be located in the center and a rounded, packed earth area should exist around the well, perhaps giving a "circular" look to the "downtown" area. Both the Inn and the Blacksmith would be located here, as would a bakery and leather-working shop -- finished products, not tanning.

    As you've pointed out, the smell of such operations would require the Tanning plant to be located on the edge of the village. I also see the Miller located "on the second block down" from the well, as it were, though not necessarily "on the edge" of the village.

    Perhaps two of the "better" homes might be located in the center "courtyard" as well -- prominent families that have been "leaders" of the community since the beginning. The village "grew up" around their dwellings. One might serve as "Mayor," or "Reeve." Another might be the relatively "wealthy" Blacksmith or Baker.

    Have we decided upon a permanent "Guard" type element? Perhaps a small barracks -- sleeping perhaps six men -- could be located on the circle as well. These "six" would be those men "on duty" at any given time; on the watch for evil humanoids, or visiting "trouble makers."

    Mostly they are the Mayor/Reeve's "muscle," at his call for whatever might be needed . . . perhaps putting out a fire, etc.
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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:05 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Hmm, I think a "general" outline map of the village would necessary to establish "placement" of particular domiciles. Do you already have something along those lines?

    Some locations have been placed, but what I mean are just cut-outs of locations. For example, draw the outline of a farm and its farmland, and send it to me. I need around 40 such locations.
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Off hand, I think the "common" (water) well should be located in the center and a rounded, packed earth area should exist around the well, perhaps giving a "circular" look to the "downtown" area. Both the Inn and the Blacksmith would be located here, as would a bakery and leather-working shop -- finished products, not tanning.

    As you've pointed out, the smell of such operations would require the Tanning plant to be located on the edge of the village. I also see the Miller located "on the second block down" from the well, as it were, though not necessarily "on the edge" of the village.

    The well is dead center in the village common, which is clear area in the center of the village proper.
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Perhaps two of the "better" homes might be located in the center "courtyard" as well -- prominent families that have been "leaders" of the community since the beginning. The village "grew up" around their dwellings. One might serve as "Mayor," or "Reeve." Another might be the relatively "wealthy" Blacksmith or Baker.

    Already taken into account, in almost exactly that way. Wink
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Have we decided upon a permanent "Guard" type element? Perhaps a small barracks -- sleeping perhaps six men -- could be located on the circle as well. These "six" would be those men "on duty" at any given time; on the watch for evil humanoids, or visiting "trouble makers."Mostly they are the Mayor/Reeve's "muscle," at his call for whatever might be needed . . . perhaps putting out a fire, etc.

    There are no barracks, or anything like that. This is a locale militia-type element, so somewhat informal (until riled up that is). Think of the village as a beehive. The guard bees are normally just cruising around...until somebody messes with the hive. Then they get riled up and quickly organize so as to sting the crap of of the offender. The place is laid back, but the people are conscious that they live in an area that has its own dangers, including those of outside influences (modern Palish zealotry being the main concern). As such, the village center is fortified with gates, a ditch, and a low palisade wall. People gather here if things really hit the fan. Other areas have some impediments built into the landscape (mainly ditches, wattle fencing, and thorny hedges), which can be further fortified if need be. Being wary of danger is not what rules the villagers' lives though- they are just prepared.
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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 6:15 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    As such, the village center is fortified with gates, a ditch, and a low palisade wall. People gather here if things really hit the fan.


    That puts me in mind of something I talked about awhile back, in a couple of other threads:

    From the publication, "1066 The Year of the Conquest," pages 12-19: "A village was surrounded by a fence, and its land by another outer fence. Beyond that were miles and miles of primeval forest and heath, empty and wild . . . "

    This is describing the village of Horstede, which existed at that time and was only a few miles from where William the Conqueror's forces landed.

    Ceb, are you telling me that I'm not the only one here who's read this book? Shocked Laughing Laughing Laughing

    I would like to add, however, that after approximately one hundred years, I think the village's "inner" defenses would be a little more substantial than a partially "wattle" built fence. Log palisades are not that hard or complicated to build, just time consuming. But one hundred years is a considerable length of time.

    The "bottoms" of the longs -- perhaps fifteen feet long -- are placed into ditches, which are then filled in. The "tops" of these logs are then lashed together. A ditch dug five feet deep would provide for a fairly "solid" wall, leaving ten feet protruding above ground -- a fence ten feet high. The logs would have been supplied by clearing farm land.

    Just my thinking, but I'll follow your lead on this. Cool
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    Paladin

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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:48 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Cebrion wrote:
    As such, the village center is fortified with gates, a ditch, and a low palisade wall. People gather here if things really hit the fan.


    From the publication, "1066 The Year of the Conquest," pages 12-19: "A village was surrounded by a fence, and its land by another outer fence. Beyond that were miles and miles of primeval forest and heath, empty and wild . . . Ceb, are you telling me that I'm not the only one here who's read this book? Shocked Laughing Laughing Laughing

    I have that book,
    Its a good read, but remember its historical fiction.
    If you enjoy that type of reading,
    others are these
    The Medieval Castle by P Warner
    Life in a Medieval Village by J Gies
    In the Time of Knights A bit juvinille but a good short read
    Britian BC by F Prior
    GreySage

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    From: LG Dyvers

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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 4:34 pm  

    Another excellent historical fiction based upon 9th century Britain (Saxon-controlled, viking raids) is The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell.

    SirXaris
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    Paladin

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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 4:48 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Another excellent historical fiction based upon 9th century Britain (Saxon-controlled, viking raids) is The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell.
    SirXaris

    is it as above or is it Chronicals? or Tales?
    I found these, and have none..
    Chronical Series
    Tales #6
    Are they the same?
    GreySage

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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 5:40 pm  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    Its a good read, but remember its historical fiction.


    DLG, I must tell you that both you and SirXaris are the only two people I have ever heard describe that book as "historical fiction." Some even use the publication for teaching purposes:

    http://www.metabarn.com/papers/1066_year_of_the_conquest.html

    http://steventill.com/2010/05/04/review-of-1066-by-david-howarth/

    http://books.google.com/books/about/1066.html?id=NhkHcJ1i7cgC

    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/770512.1066

    http://www.johnsmilitaryhistory.com/hastings.html

    I haven't bothered posting all of the links. Are you two sure we're discussing the same book? Confused
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    GreySage

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    Tue Apr 09, 2013 6:00 pm  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    SirXaris wrote:
    Another excellent historical fiction based upon 9th century Britain (Saxon-controlled, viking raids) is The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell.
    SirXaris

    is it as above or is it Chronicals? or Tales?
    I found these, and have none..
    Chronical Series
    Tales #6
    Are they the same?


    Yep, those are the series, beginning with The Last Kingdom.

    SirXaris
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:48 am  

    Never read that book, but I mentioned this set-up a bit at the beginning of things. I just wasn't sure how far I would take it. Considering the potential threats in the area, the tech level, and the available resources, the defenses I described seemed to me the most common sense thing to put in place without changing the village into something more akin to a wilderness fort. Apparently I have a good feel for this sort of thing. Laughing
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    Paladin

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    Wed Apr 10, 2013 8:34 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    Its a good read, but remember its historical fiction.


    DLG, I must tell you that both you and SirXaris are the only two people I have ever heard describe that book as "historical fiction." Some even use the publication for teaching purposes:
    .


    Humm pretty sure we are.... your links seem to confirm, Unless David Howarth wrote more than one rendition?? Wink As fare as "Historical Fiction" I'm pretty sure I am catagorizing correctly. Is it not a Story of Fiction utilizing actual historical elements as support, backdrop and plot drivers?
    As to it being referenced as a teaching tool, (I defer to Lanthorn the resident teacher among us)
    Laughing Laughing Cool
    I would conjecture this.
    1> It doesnt't detract from the interaction of the history, it is only presenting a plausable (and in other cases below less so) sub-plot that would explain, detail, or extrapilate from the historical medium. So it is NOT a slight to refer to it as such. Meaning Fiction = Wrong....

    There are many "stories" that if well researched are premised in fact, yet are stories none the less.

    James Cameron's Titanic> Did the boat sink? Yep, Was Jack and Rose aboard? eh well not so much

    Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code> Did various religious factions struggle for power as detailed? Kinda. Did the Templars have tremendous power and influence and did the French Monarchy conspire against them? Yes. Did a real Robert Langdon really do all those things, no. Did Dan Brown get the world to thinkin Yep Laughing Laughing But still doesn't make it historical fact.

    William Monahan's Kingdom of Heaven > Did the christians and the muslims fight over Jerulsalem, Yep, Could the methods and tactics been as described, sure (espcially the christian armies trotting through the desert) Did King Balwin Exist and was he a leper, yea.
    Just to name a few.

    Heck, even Shakespeare's King Lear & Romeo and Juliet meet the criteria. And we certainly teach those as representative of the period, not as a chronology of it. I know I have sat through many an english literature class with those present. hehe Wink
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    http://www.metabarn.com/papers/1066_year_of_the_conquest.html

    Quote:
    David Howarth's book 1066: The Year of the Conquest would prove to be a useful and important aid for teaching a course dealing with the history of medieval Britain. The book is outstanding in several areas. First, the book is written well. The development of the story is flawless. The reader always knows where he/she stands in the framework of the history.

    I do give thanks for the tip, and have the series ordered.
    GreySage

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    Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:13 am  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    There are many "stories" that if well researched are premised in fact, yet are stories none the less.


    "Stories?" 1066 wasn't written as a story, or in story form.

    Taken from: http://www.metabarn.com/papers/1066_year_of_the_conquest.html

    "Howarth carefully attempts to weed out the facts from the propaganda and constant religious overtones which dominate the era's literature." (Emphasis mine)

    I prefer the word "propaganda" for the writings of that time too . . . because it was. "Religious" writings of the time were also "propaganda." Little of it is "pure, unadulterated truth." They wrote with their "present" audience in mind, not "future" audiences, or history.

    In my mind, the phrase "historical fiction" equates with the phrase "historical novel;" a thing this publication is not. I wish to distinguish between the two for any readers of these posts that might be confused between the two.

    As all the links confirm, Howarth is dead on target in describing life in Horstede -- or any other medieval English town of the period. Your statement that the book is "historical fiction" implies that he is incorrect in his description, or that he has "taken liberties" with the facts. Howarth didn't do either of those things. That's exactly how life was back then and that's why I used it as an example of what I think "our" village should be.

    So, in this instance, you and I will disagree on the use of the term "historical fiction." Wink

    Of course, as I've said numerous times before, "we" play the game differently. Most of you play the game with a much more "modern day" feel to it. I like my game circa 900 A.D. to 1200 A.D.

    (Incidentally, that time period is before the advent of full plate armor.)
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    Wed Apr 10, 2013 3:20 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    So, in this instance, you and I will disagree on the use of the term "historical fiction." Wink ..

    Well I think that is the root element here. You, if I understand your position, you define fiction as a fabrication or untruth, where I, in this case, define it as a narrative based on fact, yet not substantiated. A "theory" for you Science Majors out there. Laughing Laughing
    A true "history book" would be A History of the Middle Ages by J Dahmus and since it is not a chronical of events, defer it to historical "narrative". Confused Cool Wink

    LONG and the Short of it, Yes it is a GOOD platform to base our village on, and it and t he other listed books are good reads for any interested in the details of that period.
    GreySage

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    Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:04 pm  

    DLG, before Cebrion intervenes, I moved our conversation to The Back Alley forum.

    http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=58388#58388

    So . . . come on down!

    Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:04 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    DLG, before Cebrion intervenes, I moved our conversation to The Back Alley forum.

    http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=58388#58388

    So . . . come on down!

    Laughing Laughing Laughing

    Yea see the Stormclouds rollin in.. I sent you an Private, guess great minds think alike.. or we are both parttime Weathermen Laughing Cool Wink
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Sat Apr 20, 2013 11:25 am  

    Cebrion wrote:
    ...There are no barracks, or anything like that. This is a locale militia-type element, so somewhat informal (until riled up that is)...

    -Every home might have a little bell, and others might be scattered around the wells being obvious places, and maybe that tree. The villagers wouldn't have a lot of rules, but ringing one of those bells without a real danger would be one of them. Exclamation

    They would have some sort of leadership, even if it's elected and relatively informal. Before we figure out who, maybe we just create the villagers, and then pick a captain, etc.? The captain wouldn't neccessarily be the highest level guy. INT, WIS, CHA, proficiencies/skills, maybe alignment would count. Maybe some "politics", too.
    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Sat Apr 20, 2013 9:26 pm  

    I already figured out the structure, and who is in charge. Bells and horns are alarm mechanisms used.
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    Black Hand of Oblivion

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    Fri May 31, 2013 6:36 am  

    Sutemi wrote:
    The problem is that life is extremely demanding for a villager and he is so weak (in all imaginable ways) that taking cross-class skills such as survival is hardly an option. It doesn't matter if he has +3 skill modifier or +0 in survival, he cannot make the cut to be a hunter or a trapper.

    This is why I gave up commoners completely for Dry Steppes. The average Baklun there is an Expert 1/Warrior 1 - at minimum.

    I always like to go precisely by the book. This is why I insist that we need plenty of Experts as trappers because druids and rangers are so few (according to DMG) and commoners are almost useless in that role (due to the class and its class skills).

    I have been reviewing the threads and preparing the location list, when this post jumped out at me a bit. Commoners...unable to be effective hunters? Was this an oversight, or is it there, but just "hidden" where most people don't think to look? Well, it turns out it is the latter:
    Quote:
    PROFESSION (Wis; Trained Only)
    You are trained in a livelihood or a professional role, such as apothecary, boater, bookkeeper, brewer, cook, driver, farmer, fisher, guide, herbalist, herder, hunter, innkeeper, lumberjack, miller, miner, porter, rancher, sailor, scribe, siege engineer, stablehand, tanner, teamster, woodcutter, or the like. Like Craft, Knowledge, and Perform, Profession is actually a number of separate skills. For instance, you could have the skill Profession (cook). Your ranks in that skill donít affect any checks you happen to make for milling or mining. You could have several Profession skills, each with its own ranks, each purchased as a separate skill. While a Craft skill represents skill in creating or making an item, a Profession skill represents an aptitude in a vocation requiring a broader range of less specific knowledge. To draw a modern analogy, if an occupation is a service industry, itís probably a Profession skill. If itís in the manufacturing sector, itís probably a Craft skill.
    Check: You can practice your trade and make a decent living, earning about half your check result in gold pieces per week of dedicated work. You know how to use the tools of your trade, how to perform the professionís daily tasks, how to supervise untrained helpers, and how to handle common problems. For example, a sailor knows how to tie several basic knots, how to tend and repair sails, and how to stand a deck watch at sea. The DM sets DCs for specialized tasks.
    Action: Not applicable. A single check generally represents a week of work.
    Try Again: An attempt to use a Profession skill to earn an income cannot be retried. You are stuck with whatever weekly wage your check result brought you. (Another check may be made after a week to determine a new income for the next period of time.) An attempt to accomplish some specific task can usually be retried.
    Untrained: Untrained laborers and assistants earn an average of 1 silver piece per day.

    And so no Expert hunters are needed at all, and actually very few "Expert" anythings are needed. The important thing here is not just the presence of the profession "hunter", but all of the professions, and what the Profession skill really is meant to represent. A Blacksmith will have Profession(blacksmith), and may also have Craft (blacksmithing), but the latter skill is not even a requirement for him to be able to do his job and make a living at it. Now, if he does have Craft (blacksmithing) it makes him a bit more accomplished. He can make all of the things that any normal Blacksmith can, but he also might be able to make more specialized things, like master-crafted items (i.e. things suitable for enchantment) which your run-of-the-mill Profession(blacksmith) won't be able to make. "I need some finely wrought iron bands for this Bilarro thing I am enchanting.", said the wizard. Wink

    So, don't worry about commoners being able to do anything, because it is actually is covered in the rules (all editions). Hunters can hunt, trappers can trap, etc. Just don't ask Joe Schmoe Hunter to go hunting owlbears with you or anything- you will want to go with a Ranger on that hunt. Laughing
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    Last edited by Cebrion on Fri May 31, 2013 9:48 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Fri May 31, 2013 6:46 am  

    You got me Cebrion, well played.
    Too bad that's not in the SRD. It's "unfair" that's in only in the Player's Handbook.
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