Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Suggestions for Improving Existing Area Maps or for Altering Area Maps to Reflect In-Game Plots

Moderators: Moderator, Quality Control, Associate Dev, Developer, DM

User avatar
Snarfy
Posts: 1110
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:14 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada

Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Snarfy »

As per this thread, here's some ideas as to how to, hopefully, bring a little more consistency and RP-traffic to the tradeways.

As far as well thought out areas with roads go, these two areas stand out for me:

South of Beregost:
Image

... and Uldoons Trail:
Image

Monster traffic is manageable, and the spawn placements make sense on both of these maps. Whether it's to simply travel down the roads and have a conversation, or wander off the beaten path and fight some monsters, these two areas are by far the best. They each have a random encounter(at least I think Uldoons does), although the frequency that they trigger tends to be rather scarce(I suspect it's level dependent). They both also have a prime location for characters to either rest, or gather and engage in campfire RP. Coincidentally enough, these two maps also see a decent amount of player activity. They really should be the model for every other tradeway map, as far as I'm concerned. Alas...


Moving North, to the Tradeway North of Beregost, it gets a bit messier. Goblins are, quite literally, spawning from every which direction. The tigers aren't so bad in that regard, although for the life of me, I don't even know why tigers would be on this road. It's not like this is Chult or something(ever seen a tiger in original BG? Nope, me either). Here's my proposal:
Image
- Goblins should spawn, respectively, at the top of the mine, and near the entrance. Not everywhere.
- Have a few Mephits spawn outside the Chapel. That place is underused as heck.
- Sprinkle a few giants/ogres at the base of the western hill, maybe insert a small lair, to reconcile with their presence on Lions Way.
- Fine tune both random encounters so they actually trigger more frequently, but maybe tone them down a notch in difficulty.


Next up... my least favorite map on the server in terms of monster spawns. This used to be a favorite of mine, and I've a few hilarious memories of RP encounters on this road, but now is just a constant stream of fighting off beetles, giants, and ogres. As so aptly described in the other thread, this map is just jarring. Where are these hundreds of beetles coming from? Same goes for the giants and ogres... there isn't a lair in sight. From an RP standpoint, the CK guards patrol this road non-stop, and yet it's swimming in monsters. The gnoll placement near the cave is pretty much the only thing on this map that makes any sense, the rest is an outright mess. My idea:
Image
- Beetles should spawn around the unused mine(put 'em inside too), and near the unused cave on the beach, maybe sprinkle a few at the top of the hill. Anywhere else is excessive, and makes zero sense.
- Giant/Ogres... let a few roam in the fields south of the junction, or spawn in a random encounter. Again, anywhere else makes no sense.
- Have a Troll wander out from that cave from time to time, just because.
- Enjoy being able to rest at the outdoor shrine again, because now it wont be within sight of all of the friggin' above.
- Characters will be able to walk, and RP, on the roads again. Hooray!


Tradeway South of Baldurs Gate. This area isn't so bad, but, once again, the monster locations, as well as the inclusion of goblins are a head-scratcher. After all these years, those bandits haven't figured out that roaming around the road is a guaranteed way to get killed by adventurers? Also, those bears aren't into eating the kobolds or bandits? C'mon.
Image
- Bears spawn near caves.
- Wolves spawn on west of road.
- Bandits spawn near their camp.
- Kobolds spawn near ruins.
- Goblins take a hike.
- Insert 1 random encounter. Voila.

East of Wyrms crossing needs a bit more love than one might think. I came up with...
Image
- Move snakes, spiders, wolves a bit off the road.
- Bandits should have their own camp, rather than running around with wolves, spiders, and snakes... all while wearing shirts and wielding sticks.
- Oh look, a dungeon! Put some goblins outside it, they need some fresh air. Add a random encounter while we're at it.


Thundars Ride is also a bit of a clusterfudge. Too many monsters everywhere. No logic. Do bugbears and goblin riders always get along so well? I may be lore challenged, but I have my doubts. A few patches of road where one can type an entire sentence is much needed.
Image
- Lions(?... are stupid, but not as stupid as tigers), and wolves out in the bushes.
- Bugbears get their own territories, a lair might help too.
- Vampire bats... are annoying to target. I'm biased, clearly. Stick them near the cave from whence they fluttered out of, please.
- Goblin Riders can be made a bit tougher maybe, and encroaching from the east, rather than all over the place.
- Random encounter at the bridge for sure, maybe 1 other for kicks.
- Put something cool at those ruins near NE corner, maybe?

As you can see, I'm not all for removing monsters for no reason, I would just prefer a little more common sense to apply, and for things to be a little more immersion friendly. Would I like the spawn rates to be halved? Sure... but I don't think it would be necessary if creatures just spawned in locations more appropriate. As it stands, I'm not sure the current implementations of these maps serve to benefit anyone(except grinders). With a few minor tweaks, they could be made much more friendly towards players from all walks, and maybe even help facilitate role-play/adventuring/exploring in all of the above areas. Maybe more importantly, it might bring a bit more life(from newer players/characters) to the various towns and cities, rather than pigeon-holing players into a singular pattern when starting out, IE: Grind Graveyard, grind kobold ruins, grind gibberling caves, OH WOW FAI... grind cloakwood, grind gnoll caves... and so forth.

In any case, I'm tired of typing. So, yeah. Lets make roads and towns a little more accessible to everyone, and without having to moshpit through everything. Goodness knows this server could use a lot more role-play lately(IMHO), and we shouldn't be required to grind our way around everywhere just to find it.

Think of the poor beetles, and the lovers of beetles, who are forced to squish them under foot non-stop. :? :dance:

Thoughts?
dtdnd.neocities.org/books/player/Drow%20of%20the%20Underdark.pdf

User avatar
Steve
Recognized Donor
Posts: 6106
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2015 5:42 am
Location: Paradise in GMT +1

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Steve »

Ha! The Snarferator gets an A+ for his "What I did during my Christmas Vacation" essay. :twisted: 0:)

Got one question for you Snarf ol' Boy: Why is the Sword Coast supposedly named the Sword Coast?!?
Storybuilding

|> Jon SmytheChionthar Charter & Seaward Supply Co. — Path of the Mindful Blade & Seafarer
|> Monserrate — Circle of Rust and the Worm
|> Simsae the DemonslayerStonesinger of the Telormar Gultor & citizen of the Kingdom of Kraak Helzak

User avatar
Snarfy
Posts: 1110
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:14 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Snarfy »

Steve wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 6:55 pm
Ha! The Snarferator gets an A+ for his "What I did during my Christmas Vacation" essay. :twisted: 0:)

Got one question for you Snarf ol' Boy: Why is the Sword Coast supposedly named the Sword Coast?!?
Uhhhhmmm... is this some sort of phallic shaped reference? Because, if it isn't, I have no idea. *goes to find a Sword Coast map*

I got an A+ ... woo! Finally, after 47 years! :dance:
dtdnd.neocities.org/books/player/Drow%20of%20the%20Underdark.pdf

User avatar
Planehopper
Lead Moderator
Posts: 1342
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2011 4:50 pm

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Planehopper »

I love these ideas. On my phone so I dont want to type a lot, but it all makes sense to me! Nice work.
Roleplay – This is a roleplay server set in the Forgotten Realms campaign world.

Zahven Thruel - Mysterious Mage
Wizzelbert Cranksproket - Lantanese Gnome

chad878262
QC Coordinator
Posts: 9054
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2014 6:55 pm

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by chad878262 »

bumping this thread because I agree a look could be taken at The Lion's Way (side note, why was it changed to "The Way of Lion's" pretty sure that is wrong, it is supposed to be called "The Lion's Way"). Also agree Thunder's Ride, while a fantastic 'grind-zone' for levels ~7-12 could use some adjustment to make spawns a little less common on or near the roadway. Presumably BG actually trades with other cities and thus merchants don't risk having a dozen goblins/bugbears/beetles of various type destroying their trade goods too often.

Would be nice if the road from BG to FAI was utilized as a solid building block for other such travel zones. The road is far from safe, but there is a fairly good chance that you can get from one transition to the next without seeing a single enemy *IF* you stick to the road. By no means 100% as there are random encounters and/or mobs that may spawn on or near the roadway, but it's by no means the most likely occurrence.
Chord Silverstrings - Bard and OSR Squire / Tarent Nefzen - Arcane Wand Merchant and Master Alchemist / Irrace Arkentlar - Drow Adventurer / Finneaus Du'Veil - Gem Merchant and Executive Officer of SCCE

Tarent's Wands and Elixirs

A Wand Crafter's guide to using wands

User avatar
Snarfy
Posts: 1110
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:14 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Snarfy »

chad878262 wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 10:26 am
Would be nice if the road from BG to FAI was utilized as a solid building block for other such travel zones. The road is far from safe, but there is a fairly good chance that you can get from one transition to the next without seeing a single enemy *IF* you stick to the road. By no means 100% as there are random encounters and/or mobs that may spawn on or near the roadway, but it's by no means the most likely occurrence.
It's nowhere near as jarring as the rest, for sure. Never seen a random encounter spawn here though :think: maybe I need to roll up another lowbie and find out!

Speaking of random encounters, the one with the dopplegangers north of Beregost is one of my favorites, but... those things have a tendency to glitch right out animation-wise(their models mutate and warp all over the place). I just wish the random encounters weren't level dependent. Come to think of it, I only ever see them spawn when a character who is lower in level than the CR of the zone passes over the trigger spot. Which I find kind of hilarious, but maybe that's just me. :dance:
Hidden: show
Image
dtdnd.neocities.org/books/player/Drow%20of%20the%20Underdark.pdf

User avatar
DM Bloodvine
Associate DM
Posts: 391
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2020 6:39 am

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by DM Bloodvine »

Personal Opinion and not representative of the DM Team.

The Lions Way. This is a fairly scenic and well-crafted map, the constant fighting and battle music really takes away from it. I agree with the design theory behind most of these changes. It makes little sense that the Candlekeep patrol and Bladsestone foundation can't keep the road clear. I think the design philosophy of the server has changed since these road-maps were conceptualized. There are a lot more areas and interiors to explore now for killing monsters. If we reduce spawn proximity to the road, then it is possible for players to RP-walk and chat with their friends. Not having to sigh and look for your sheathed weapon button mid-sentence would be a welcome change whilst keeping ambushes and random encounters an option.

Most of the other suggestions seem sensible as well.
Last edited by DM Bloodvine on Sat May 30, 2020 9:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Rhifox
Quality Control
Posts: 981
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 2:34 am

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Rhifox »

+1 to these suggestions.
Reader Tarina of Candlekeep — Witch, Enchantress, Dealer in Spirits and Black Magic

User avatar
Snarfy
Posts: 1110
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:14 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Snarfy »

DM Bloodvine wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 11:50 am
It makes little sense that the Candlekeep patrol and Bladsestone foundation can't keep the road clear. I think the design philosophy of the server has changed since these road-maps were conceptualized.
Oddly enough, the previous version of Lions way(from about 6+ years ago) had no CK npc patrols, and no Bladestone either, and any character passing through was hard pressed to encounter even 1 or 2 monsters(which makes the current over-abundance of monsters make even less sense). I actually can't even remember what monsters did spawn on the old version... :?

What I do remember from the old incarnation of Lions way was getting ambushed by two PC bandits(and getting my (hiney) handed to me). Or the multitude of times that some evil character set up a pile of bones, or a black altar at the intersection. Or the numerous times we would run into a drow PC lurking in the bushes. Or the several instances where a band of Orc PC's, or a different evil band/guild would be roaming through and giving the goodies a hard time. I'm pretty sure I also remember getting aggravated by some of these encounters, and highly entertained by the rest.

And while I do like how the Lions Way currently looks, the one thing I can say with absolute certainty about the previous version of Lions is: it was nowhere near as aggravating, and WAY more entertaining than: Walk 10 feet, take out weapon, kill <insert creature here>, sheath weapon, turn on tracking/search/walk mode, move 10 more feet, take out weapon, fend off yada yada... and if you're lucky enough to see someone on the road? Chances are they're not stoked about trying to RP around the spawns either. I mean, you know things are bad when even the skull-pile dropping, ultimatum-giving, black-armored bad guys avoid a heavy traffic(or what is supposed to be) area. :lol:
dtdnd.neocities.org/books/player/Drow%20of%20the%20Underdark.pdf

User avatar
Planehopper
Lead Moderator
Posts: 1342
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2011 4:50 pm

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Planehopper »

Snarfy wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 4:08 pm
Oddly enough, the previous version of Lions way(from about 6+ years ago) had no CK npc patrols, and no Bladestone either, and any character passing through was hard pressed to encounter even 1 or 2 monsters(which makes the current over-abundance of monsters make even less sense). I actually can't even remember what monsters did spawn on the old version... :?
Ogres. The old version. And then it was Ogres and Hill giants, IIRC. I liked that old version and never understood where the beetles came from. Maybe there was an event/happening that took place?

There were enough spawns to level, though. It was one of the favored places for gathering them all up and dashing them with magic for caster grinds. ((but also back when you had to be careful not to gather too many or the server would crash. lol))
What I do remember from the old incarnation of Lions way was getting ambushed by two PC bandits(and getting my (hiney) handed to me). Or the multitude of times that some evil character set up a pile of bones, or a black altar at the intersection. Or the numerous times we would run into a drow PC lurking in the bushes. Or the several instances where a band of Orc PC's, or a different evil band/guild would be roaming through and giving the goodies a hard time. I'm pretty sure I also remember getting aggravated by some of these encounters, and highly entertained by the rest.
Yeah. Those are always hit or miss, but when they hit they are fun. It is hard to have them happen, however, when you have a beetle up your rear every 30 seconds, and boulders being tossed from a mile away. More areas designed for RP opportunities would be nice.
And while I do like how the Lions Way currently looks, the one thing I can say with absolute certainty about the previous version of Lions is: it was nowhere near as aggravating, and WAY more entertaining than: Walk 10 feet, take out weapon, kill <insert creature here>, sheath weapon, turn on tracking/search/walk mode, move 10 more feet, take out weapon, fend off yada yada... and if you're lucky enough to see someone on the road? Chances are they're not stoked about trying to RP around the spawns either. I mean, you know things are bad when even the skull-pile dropping, ultimatum-giving, black-armored bad guys avoid a heavy traffic(or what is supposed to be) area. :lol:
Agreed. And the maps you marked up above are spot on.
Roleplay – This is a roleplay server set in the Forgotten Realms campaign world.

Zahven Thruel - Mysterious Mage
Wizzelbert Cranksproket - Lantanese Gnome

realayer
Posts: 158
Joined: Wed May 18, 2016 1:19 am

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by realayer »

Regarding N of Beregost, there is a resting place beside the goblin cave. I was attacked when resting there, and that interrupted my rest. It is not safe at all! And also annoying as I needed to wait a long time to rest again. Perhaps move the spawn point of goblins further south of the cave.

Regarding East of the Wyrm Crossing, just outside of the ruin is also a resting place. Perhaps designed for adventurers to rest up before venturing into the ruin. If a spawn point has to be put there, perhaps moving the resting place to the abandoned house?

User avatar
Snarfy
Posts: 1110
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:14 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Snarfy »

realayer wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 7:55 pm
Regarding N of Beregost, there is a resting place beside the goblin cave. I was attacked when resting there, and that interrupted my rest. It is not safe at all! And also annoying as I needed to wait a long time to rest again. Perhaps move the spawn point of goblins further south of the cave.

Regarding East of the Wyrm Crossing, just outside of the ruin is also a resting place. Perhaps designed for adventurers to rest up before venturing into the ruin. If a spawn point has to be put there, perhaps moving the resting place to the abandoned house?
Hmm, good points. I forgot about rest spots almost entirely. For East of Wyrms I agree, the house would be the most logical choice. As for N of Beregost, believe it or not, characters actually used to sit and RP at that little campfire outside the mine... now it's just prime real-estate for getting ambushed(especially after the random goblin encounter was inserted nearby). I think you can rest at the Shrine across the river, so no need for it to even be a rest location.
dtdnd.neocities.org/books/player/Drow%20of%20the%20Underdark.pdf

User avatar
Steve
Recognized Donor
Posts: 6106
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2015 5:42 am
Location: Paradise in GMT +1

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Steve »

Image



Image


Hi Snarferrator!! ;)
Storybuilding

|> Jon SmytheChionthar Charter & Seaward Supply Co. — Path of the Mindful Blade & Seafarer
|> Monserrate — Circle of Rust and the Worm
|> Simsae the DemonslayerStonesinger of the Telormar Gultor & citizen of the Kingdom of Kraak Helzak

User avatar
Zanniej
Global Admin
Posts: 1833
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:28 am
Location: The dark parts of the forum

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Zanniej »

Though I hope everybody already knows that I mostly speak opinions, and very few admin decisions, I thought I'd prefix this, saying this is once more my opinion! :-P

I really like this! I think that trade roads should be safe, barring the occasional random encounter (ambush, etc.)
Maybe a stray creature sometimes ... but not continuously.

Nice work Snarf! Good to hear that you're finally old enough for an A+ ;-)
"May the forums be ever in your favor."

"You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him."

Now you see me ... now you don't

User avatar
Snarfy
Posts: 1110
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:14 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada

Re: Making tradeway areas more logical/RP friendly.

Unread post by Snarfy »

Zanniej wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 5:35 am
Good to hear that you're finally old enough for an A+ ;-)
Well, Steve gave me the A+, so it was a hollow victory, at best... then you validated my A+ after I hit my 48th year. Man, talk about deflating. I just can't seem to win. :cry:

Now the server has farted, and I'm forced to bump this thread with some humor deep thoughts, a la 'Jack Handy' style(did you ever have that in Europe? I hope so, otherwise I'll just come off like a lunatic):

Deep thought #1 : What if... those Candlekeep guards that patrol the tradeway had functional XP bars? As in, what if they could actually level up? Holy moly, right? I wager they would both be at least level 42(that was an 80's joke) from killing all those beetles and ogres and giants. Can you imagine what their conversations might be like? "I swear, Frank... if I never see another beetle for as long as I live, it'll be too soon." .... seriously, if I was a DM and had to play an NPC, these guys would be dead last on my list.

Hmm, server is still down... welp!

Deep thought #2: "A saunter down the tradeway" - a PnP adventure, levels 5 - 10, translated from an in-game perspective. Read at your own peril.
Hidden: show
DM: You arrive at the Way of Lions, the din and clamor of the Friendly Arms falling away behind you, and a long, lonely stretch of road sprawling out bef-...
Fighter: <insert chad90210's voice here> I thought it was the Lions way?
DM: ... whatever. Lions way, Way of Lions, it's had many names. But never had a lion sighting, oddly enough.
Barbarian: *picks nose*
Cleric: Let us move south, comrades. To Bearagropes!
Fighter: ... Beregost.
Cleric: That's what I said, Berrygoats!
DM: As you take your first tentative steps down the Way of Lions...
Fighter: Lions Way.
DM: ... Lions Way, you are attacked by... a ginormous beetle! Prepare to defend yourselves.
Barbarian: *stares dumbly*
Cleric: To arms! I cast a blessing on the par-...
DM: You are ambushed mid-prayer, by a fearsome ogre! Prepare to defend yourselves.
Fighter: If there are no lions here, where'd the name come fr-...
DM: Your redundant musings are short-lived, as the ogre and beetle are upon you! The beetle spits some acid, right as the ogre raises it's club to deliver a vicious swing!
Barbarian: Me take out axe.
DM: ... you get your axe half-way out of it's holster, when a second ginormous beetle springs out of pretty much nowhere! Here, on the not not-so lonely and completely open stretch of Way of Lion... Way of the Lions' roadway.
Fighter: Lions way.
DM: Shut up! The adventurers, as well as the ogre, are seared by a torrent of beetle acid. Roll reflex! Also, the ogre bashes the fighter with its club as he is sprayed in the face by acid, and since his reflex save is going to fail anyways... he rolls 1d8 acid, and probably 1d10 melee damage.
Cleric: I cast cure light wounds!
DM: You only just finished casting bless, you have to wait a round.
Fighter: Probably? I have like 24AC.
DM: Definitely 1d10 damage then. Also, the second beetle is attacking you now too. Roll another 1d8.
Fighter: ... do I see any lions?
DM: No. But you do see some guards bearing the insignia of Candlekeep arriving! As well as another beetle, and a very short giant charging to attack.
Barbarian: Me attack the g...
DM: You just got your axe out, wait one round please. Meanwhile, just as the clerics blessing envelops the area, the Candlekeep guards(who seem somehow unaffected by the blessing, perhaps because they're level 42) completely annihilate the giant, the three beetles, and the ogre... but not before the creatures swarm the fighter and devour him while he's still conscious.
Fighter: Arrrgh....
Fighter: Arrrgh....
DM: You all get zero experience points, but...
Fighter: Arrrgh....
Barbarian: *puts axe away*
DM: ... you find a spoon and a copper ring in one of the dead beetles innards! The Candlekeep guards continue on their way, strutting rather wordlessly, while leaving the adventurers to their hard earned spoils.
Fighter: Arrrgh...
Is the server up yet? I'll stop de-railing my own thread now...
dtdnd.neocities.org/books/player/Drow%20of%20the%20Underdark.pdf

Post Reply