Gygax 75 – Week Two – The Home Area

This week we are supposed to sit down with some hex paper and make a map of the home region.

Since we are using the OD&D map from Outdoor Survival, that part is all set. The hexes on the map are five miles across, and correspond to the Regional (25 mile) hexes on the campaign map. Thus, if one were to translate from the “real” world to this demi-plane, then walk 20 miles north and translate back, you would find yourself 100 miles north of where you started.

Outdoor Survival map for OD&D
Faerie Realm Map

I am going to redraw this map in Hexkit with a few more details, plus the labels for the towns and castles, etc.

Here is the Regional Adventure Area map, done up in Hexkit:

Faerie Realm regional map

This map (25 miles per hex) includes:

  • One Significant Settlement: The Ghost Monastery
  • Two other settlements: the Hanging Gardens and the Fortress of Kadhoar
  • Mysterious site to explore: The Spectral Ruin
  • One main dungeon entrance: Crag Keep

The next map has five-mile hexes, and is a lot more detailed:

Faerie Realm Local Map - Ghost Monastery

I really love the Hexkit program. It makes the cartography so much fun! I mostly used the hexkit package from Zeshio on this one.

  1. Lotus Plateau
  2. Lair of the Golden Serpent
  3. Ghost Monastery
  4. Wandering Priest
  5. Lair of the Spider Queen
  6. Labyrinth of Shadows
  7. Forbidden Tower of the Swamp Mother
  8. Hunting Ground of the Forsaken
  9. Tree of Knowledge of Sorcery
  10. Lost Temple of the moon
  11. Sphere of Annihilation
  12. Canyon of the Damned
  13. Knight of Pentacles

Encounter Table

The encounter table for the Faerie Realm is going to be pretty standard for anywhere in the Dreadlands. There will be some regional differences, and some differences based on the Topography (Forest/Mountain/Desert). The design aesthetic is taken from the ideas shared by Grumpy Wizard in this blog post How I Structure Random Tables.

The table is laid out to enhance the idea of the setting, and tell a story. In another blog about Encounter Tables (at Pencils & Papers) I found a gem of a quote, “a 2 is always a Dragon, a 12 is always a Wizard”. So, on this table, a roll of 2 will be a very setting-specific encounter with a powerful denizen or group. Likewise, a 12 will be an NPC Magic-User with an unusual specialty or purpose/mission.

By blending the ideas in these two posts I came up with a pretty cool method of generating random encounters.

2 – A very dangerous, highly aesthetic monster encounter

3 – High-danger Mundane creature

4 – NPC: a recurring character or archetype

5 – Medium-danger Faerie monster

6 – 2d6 Faction Members – (Secondary for the area*) working at cross-purposes to the Party

7 – Low-danger Mundane creature

8 – 2d6 Faction Members – (Primary for the area) working with matched-purposes to the Party

9 – “Social”/Sentient Monster (or NPC) – High-danger, only if crossed, parley is recommended

10 – Evidence of Spell Failure (Catastrophic) or magical detritus (high danger environment)

11 – Enchanted Mundane creature with an unusual ability

12 – NPC Magic-User (AVG PC level +4) with unusual specialty or purpose


  1. Ophidyrie
  2. Pack of Thogyrie Patrol (d10 + 20 warriors)
  3. Golem Caravan with Minotaur guards
  4. Wyvern(s)
  5. Ki-rin (from the clouds above)
  6. Roll again, on a second roll of 6: one of the Oeloi tyrants and their attendants


  1. Pack of Sub-griffs
  2. Herd of Dinosaurs
  3. Fae-kine Stampede
  4. Wild Boars
  5. Giant Snake
  6. d4 young Wyverns

4 Special


  1. Thogyrie Patrol (d6 x 12)
  2. Minotaur Hunting Party (5)
  3. Vampires (Stirges) (d6 + 6)
  4. Flock of Cockatrice (2d4)
  5. River Dragons (d4)
  6. Urgot (d6)

6 and 8 – Factions

  1. Knight of Pentacles
  2. Forsaken
  3. Elleneffera
  4. Ghost Monastery
  5. Mongyrie
  6. Cloudlanders


  1. Giant Centipedes
  2. Greater Sub-griff
  3. Wyvern
  4. Carnivorous Dinosaur
  5. Fae-kine herd
  6. Pack of Giant Rodents

9 and 10  Special, unique, set pieces



  1. Bird
  2. Sub-griff
  3. Large Rodent
  4. Dragonflies
  5. Snake
  6. Raccoon


  1. Affect Normal Fires
  2. Levitation
  3. Mist-form
  4. Invisible (except the eyes and teeth)
  5. Clockwork Automaton
  6. Crystalline form

12 Special Wizard encounter

The Special results should be created in advance, based on the party composition, history, and level of accomplishment.

So, that’s if for “Week Two”. LOL

Next post in this series will have a layout for the outline of the dungeon known as The Forbidden Tower of the Swamp Mother.

EDIT: I’m no artist, but here’s a sneak-peek!

Forbidden Tower of the Swamp Mother
A fallen tower of gray stone lies half-submerged in the stagnant waters of the Forbidden Swamp. Smoke rises from the rubble-strewn base, the smell of sulfur hangs in the air. A snow-white Heron lands upon the tower, glances in your direction, then flies off again, to the south.

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