For the past few months, Randy and I have been hard at work putting together the first city book for Tyrants of Saggakar, Onero: City of Sins. The original idea for Onero came as we were writing ToS1-05 Path to Ambition. What at first started as an idea of a "place where the First Ones don't rule". Then the discussion evolved to a bastion of good to a place of sin and deprivity.
I will admit the first idea really intrigued me, the second not so much, so the third was born.
Because I don't like or want alignment to be a deciding factor in the creation of alliances in Saggakar. I like that grayness, that non-Manichean dilemma, and the alliances of convenience and necessity. So we got to talking. And talking. And try to come up with a series of ideas about what we wanted to put in this book.
One thing led to another, with a series of iterations led to the final product.
A few lessons learned from my end
- A rough map helps place things in town
- A basic, relatable, simple human need or desire helps
- Depravity is a dark place to dwell
- It is always easier to trim material than to add
One of my goals, which I didn't fully share with Randy is that I plan on having this book be the first of many that will cover the ArchDespotate (at first) and beyond. They will then be collected into a "Complete ArchDespotate" book down the road. So in a way, he served as my guinea pig to develop the format, though in reality, I was the one who cut out a number of elements to keep to the essential and most exciting.
Leaving us with a twenty two pages book filled with characters with dark pasts, locations with secrets, derro experiments, forgotten ruins. In short, everything you need to run adventures and even a campaign set here.
Now I have a cover to finish if I want the book to be in your delighted little hands by the end of next week...