Monday, July 8, 2013

Fiend Folio World: Fiend Folio Encounter Tables

(If you just came here for the Fiend Folio wandering monster tables, click the following link: View: Fiend Folio Wandering Monster Tables.)

Long before I started blogging, Jeff Rients mentioned the idea of "proscriptive campaign creation," referring to a campaign with certain intentional limits.  In the linked post, he discusses using Booklet 2: Monsters and Magical Items of S4 The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth as the starting point of a campaign setting, but he also mentions the prospect of using 1981's Fiend Folio as the basis of a campaign setting.

While adventuring through the OSR blogosphere, I feel like I've heard this concept a couple of times, and decided that since I'm working on a Spelljammer game for my associates, now would be as good a time as any to work on the concept.  (For that matter, the Spelljammer core box set notes the possibility of using obscure Fiend Folio creatures to populate a world on pages 11 and 12 of Lorebook of the Void.)

As such, I decided to make a Fiend Folio-only campaign setting.

I'm really just here for the Fiend Folio stuff

Before I bore you with a ton of design notes, here are the Fiend Folio-only wandering monster tables in Google Drive spreadsheet format.  If that's all you want, just follow that link and you're good to go.  They're not terribly pretty, and they're not in a good format for printing, but they're readable.

When I decided to make a Folian setting, I discovered (to my surprise) that it had not yet been done publicly.  Jeff Rients has been compiling any data people post regarding the Fiend Folio, but there isn't much apart from a few musings on the subject.  In terms of AD&D-style data points, there were only two: Rients' own post on the Folian mythos, detailing the bleak gods of the Fiend Folio, and  Chris Hogan's Fiend Folio-only wandering monster tables, showing only the Dungeon Level wandering monster tables.  (Special thanks to Chris Hogan of Vaults of Nagoh for compiling those tables, because that jumping-off point was exceedingly helpful.)

So, over the course of a few days, I converted all of Hogan's tables to d100, removed any errant non-Fiend Folio results (his tables include humans, rival adventuring parties, demon princes, and groaning spirits), and reduced the "DM's Option" results (which I interpret as either DM's choice or special encounter tables or whatever) to 3% of the chart.

I also proceeded to convert all of the wilderness tables to D100 and remove all the Monster Manual results.

Here are more relevant notes:
  • These tables assume access to TSR's 1981 Fiend Folio for AD&D 1e.  Several of the creatures have been reprinted elsewhere, so it's not totally necessary, but everything makes more sense if you have it.
  • As per the original Fiend Folio, the aleax, denzelian, hound of ill omen, terithran, and trilloch are omitted (although the terithran appears on the Ethereal Encounter Table).  The creatures typically only appear in specific circumstances.
  • All percentages are kept as originally on the random encounter charts.  I make the same assumption as Chris Hogan and assume creature frequency is the same in a Folian world.
  • DM's Option is whatever the DM chooses.  You can throw a rival adventuring party into the mix, use a special encounter table, pick a creature you want to use, or whatever.  (If you're stuck for ideas, you can always just re-roll.)
  • As in the original text, the wilderness charts feature several italicized creature names.  These creatures have a 75% likelihood to be encountered airborne.
  • I replaced the number appearing distributions with dice ranges.
If I made any glaring errors on the charts, feel free to leave feedback in the comments.  And make sure you check out the tables.

(Also, interested parties may wish to check out the sample world of Llurb Tdunon.)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Print Friendly