Saturday, November 3, 2012

Do Natural Disasters Occur in Your Campaigns?

After dealing with an extremely long work week, the thought occurred to me:

Do natural disasters occur during most / some / any RPG campaigns?

I'm not taling about whatever magical plague / bullshit that WotC does to justify edition changes - I'm talking true natural disasters that change the course of a campaign.

So, what effect, if any, do natural disasters have on the campaigns your run or play in?


  1. Problem is the players never believe it's natural. After all, it's not paranoia if someone, the DM, really is out to get you.

    I do recall an article or letter in The Dragon about this sometime after Mt. St. Helens blew.

  2. One of the old Dungeon Magazines has an adventure centered around a large fire that breaks out in the town, i don't think there is anything supernatural just a fire in a medieval town wich is probably either really scary or not scary at all based on the level of magic in a campaigne.

  3. As a matter of fact yes. The world map I use was created in Fractal Terrains. One of the views it shows is a temperature pattern for the map. Just like in our world the warmer regions have a hurricane season. I also have, as yet undeveloped in the setting an area for monsoons. I have built in fault lines where earthquakes can occur. As well as a good number of volcanos on the continent where most of my campaign is taking place. After living in Oklahoma City, during the tornado that leveled the city of More I have a tornado season as well.

    Not everything need a supernatural or paranormal reason for happening. Weather is one of the most under rated events in a game setting. I think that is due to players and DMs not wanting to go through the ordeal of a major, natural event. Survival, meaning that you do need to keep track of resources, is far too tedious for some players.

  4. Dude I feel your pain about the storms. We rode out Rita which was a CAT 2-3 but not as large as your storm. Everything is gonna feel different for a very long time. Use that for gaming as it's very therapeutic.

  5. Blizzards, Fllods, Tsunamis, Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Droughts, Volcanoes, Forest Fires have turned up from time to time in my campaigns. Weather and worse happens.
    Travel disruptions, food shortages, and price increases are common with natural disasters of all sorts.

  6. "Not everything need a supernatural or paranormal reason for happening"

    Historically that's exactly what people believed, though. So I tend to assume that in a fantasy world, supernatural disasters are their equivalent of our natural disasters. If an earthquake devastates the city it's because some evil god, wizard or dragon did it.


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