Hex Crawl Alphabet: D is for Dwarves

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OK, we know that next hex over has a dwarven settlement of some sort in it. First off, what’s the general purpose of that settlement?

Dwarf Settlement Purpose (d6)
1-3: Mining
4-5: Military
6: Mercantile

Assuming “traditional” dwarves, military establishments represent a stronghold or fortress protecting the mountains, hills, or land below the earth from outside incursion (depending on the terrain), and not any sort of aggressive attempt at gaining new territory.

Mercantile settlements exist for dwarves to get their wares out into the non-dwarven world at a handsome profit.

But when it comes to mining, none can match the dwarves. So what are the dwarves after in this mining outpost?

Dwarf Mining Purpose (d10, then see subtable)
1-3: Metal
4-6: Gemstones
7-8: Fuel
9-10: Strange/Other

Metal Subtable (d20)
1: Lead
2-3: Tin
4-6: Copper
7-9: Silver
10-12: Gold
13-14: Platinum
15-18: Iron
19: Mithril
20: Adamantium

Gemstone Subtable (d100)
01-70: Semi-Precious, then d6
1: Amethyst
2: Turquoise
3: Malachite
4: Obsidian
5: Quartz
6: Jade
71-00: Precious, then d8
1-3: Emerald
4-5: Ruby
6-7: Sapphire
8: Diamond

Fuel Subtable (d6)
1-3: Coal
4-5: Oil Rigs
6: Glow Rock (or warpstone or whatever)

Strange/Other Subtable (d14)

Thanks to Brendan, Ian, Evan, Mike, and Jim!

  1. The dwarves are mining bones of a dead Titan from its vast and partially fossilized corpse.
  2. Actually, the dwarves are really only interested in the dental fillings of that Titan. Seriously, those things must be worth a fortune!
  3. This is the entrance to a complex of war mines. The tunnels lead far beneath enemy territory, and are designed to make enemy fortifications unstable and allow the dwarves to strike behind the front lines.
  4. There is nothing of value to mine in this place, yet these dwarves are still mining away. It is a deep an undeniable compulsion, and so the dwarves keep hauling away earth and stone, forming tunnels and laying cart track, following an elaborate course guided by gods-know-what.
  5. The dwarves are mining for thunderstone. This rare mineral is formed whenever lightning strikes the earth. Very thin veins of thunderstone continue the path of the lightning all the way to the center of the world.
  6. They are archaeologists uncovering their ancient dead.
  7. They mine for the seed-stones in ripe foothills in order to grow new mountains.
  8. The dwarves seek threads of toxic myceleum, bio-weapon of the mushroom people.
  9. They’re after rust monster larval grubs. The slime produced by these burrowers is used by master craftsman to hone and etch even the hardest metal.
  10. They’re digging after a lost branch of their clan.
  11. These dwarves are digging themselves graves. The clan with the most expansive, elaborate tomb-complex is the most respected.
  12. They’re mining the flesh of a kaiju earthworm.
  13. They mine for the very roots of Yggdrasil, the World Tree.
  14. The dwarves here seek not to remove metals or gems from the stone; rather they are returning ore to the earth that has been improperly harvested (“stolen”) by humans and goblins.

Author: John Carr

Gamer, comic guy, office drone.

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