Design Diary No.12 Into the Hidden Quarter

This week I finished off the last few locations in the Old Quarter, including several places in the Poor Ward which have appeared in both campaigns such as the Winking Vixen brothel and the Floating Palace gambling hall. It’s been interesting going back to revise these descriptions as they were some of the first things I wrote for Parsantium, way back in 2008!

With the city wards all done, I moved on to the Hidden or Fourth Quarter – the ruins of the older city of Dhak Janjua buried under the modern day one, the sewers, ghoul tunnels and other underground locations. This was a lot of fun to write about and the section includes the infamous Orloch Scragmane’s underground slave market (from the second ever Parsantium adventure and seen again recently at #UKT4), the headquarters of the Golden Scimitars criminal gang and a cool cave temple to the Black Mother, Kali. The idea behind the Hidden Quarter is to give DMs and players who like to have plenty of dungeons in their D&D a means of doing this. The locations are all connected to the city above and the organisations I’m going to be writing about next, hopefully making it easy for the DM to come up with exciting adventures that combine intrigue and roleplaying with some entertaining dungeon bashing.

I’ve also written a short section about the places just outside the city walls, including another old favourite, the Forest of the Dead, the city’s cemetery where the priests of Soranus, god of the dead, stand guard against any who would disturb the resting places of the deceased. I’ll be writing about the Feyshore Forest as well as it’s just too cool not to include in the book.

The picture below is a postcard I bought in Istanbul of the Mosque of Suleyman and its graveyard. I think this style of interior art would work well – just need to find someone who can draw like this….

Forest of the Dead

The word count stands at 65,600 so I reckon I have about 10,000 more to write on the organisations and the gods before the first draft is done. Then Kate will give it all a good read through and I’ll start the process of revising everything prior to editing and the initial layout.

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