…and a wet fog rolls off the harbor, cloaking the flooded streets of Old Town in a sick miasma. Out on Harbor Isle, the gas lamps of Doc Grundy’s Miracle Elixir Company still burn a noxious green, though the factory has been shuttered since the new proprietor came home on a boat laden with foreign idols, a big bellied Eel Wife by his side.
At the sign of the Lamprey’s Daughter, bastards and thieves throw down their coin as a ten year old boy chokes a small but vicious dog in the fighting pit.
Seances are held in musty parlors. Esoteric orders gather behind moldy drapes. Heavy canvas bags are delivered without comment to anatomists and pie makers alike.
And is it me, or just Whateley's Whiskey, or do the rats seem extremely well organized?
Come morning, the fungus priests will clear away the fruiting bodies that choke the alleys each night, barely staying ahead of the Rot. The omnipresent chimneys will make greasy smoke of that which died in the night —little else will burn around here.
The church bells will ring, but the pews will remain empty.
God draws no crowd in Grundyville.
What it is:
A grotesque urban setting for Elf Games. A fetid shithole of a port town, a pox upon decent folk, a half-flooded Sodom-by-the-Sea. Bertolt Brecht’s Innsmouth, a Norman Rockwell painting of feral orphans kicking a drowned dog.
What it looks like:
(concept art swiped from the Dishonored and Thief video games)
What it sounds like:
What kind of trouble can my PC get into there?
Off the top of my head, they could
…run afoul of organized crime, or organize some crime of their own
…rub shoulders with Old Money, the decadent, ghoulish, and probably cannibal upper class
…battle Eel Men and slack-jawed flood zombies in the submerged streets of Old Town
…explore Harbor Isle’s haunted factory/megadungeon
…avoid mutation-inducing alchemical pollution and its accompanying weather
…hunt Leviathans with cutthroat sailors as desperate and dangerous as yourself
Stuff like that.
I’ve always been fond of urban fantasy, but I’ve never run a city-based game. I'm giving it a shot, hence this bullshit. Expect sooty industrial hellscapes, scientific hubris, wizard gangs, undead thugs, sewer delves, and half-cocked (sometimes quarter-cocked) notions.
Part 1 of lots.