The Deadwind Archipelago
The Deadwind Archipelago
On the Island-City of Deadwind the government changes every 3 days.
Or every Long Rest. Or whenever.
By divine compact with the goddess Liberty, the wind isn't allowed in Deadwind, and the government must change every 3 days, in accordance with her Law. There's a marble statue of her in the town square, bare-breasted and leading the charge with rifle/spear aloft. Every 3 days she declares the new government.
She's light on the details.
Roll d100 every time the party returns to Deadwind. All of them are literal.
1-3: "True" Anarchy
8-9: True Democracy
12: Absolute Monarchy
13: Constitutional Monarchy
14: Uniocracy - Entire island becomes a hive mind for 3 days. Sure to be awkward afterwards.
15: Magocracy - Wizards rejoice, your time is nigh!
20: Beerocracy - Nobody's gonna be sober for three days straight.
22: Cannonocracy - Person with the biggest guns (literal or figurative, setting dependent) calls the shots.
24: Cryptarchy - It's a secret!
25: Demonarchy - This one sucks.
26: Bestiocracy - All fear the rule of cats.
27: Doulocracy - Slavery's probably not a thing on the island, due to this entry.
31: Gerontocracy - Pick one: absolute year threshold or relative age
33: Heroarchy - Either PCs by default or they've got to prove themselves.
34: Hetaerocracy - How do paramours rule?
39: Infantocracy - This one sucks, too. Terrible Two's Tyrants.
41: Kakistocracy - Or the rule of the best, depending on who you ask.
42: Kleptocracy - Do they plan a great tax-heist?
46: Mobocracy - Mob justice for anything and everything.
49. Nomocracy - Whoever writes the law makes the rule. No authority needed.
58: Pigmentocracy - Maybe those with particular birth marks? So as to not overlap with Ethnocracy.
69: Sociocracy - I have no idea how this works.
77: Adhocracy - Calvinball! Anyone can make up laws on the spot by declaring them.
79: Arithmocracy - A simple majority rules in all cases. Lots of voting.
82: Capracracy - "The most superior form of governance known to man or goat."
83: Demarchy - Lottery winner gets to rule.
91. Break a deal? Spin the wheel!
92. Thesbianocracy - (I made this word up. There must be a better one)
93. Loudarchy - The loudest shouter has authority. Nobody can be super loud forever.
94. Diseaseocracy - The sick call the shots.
95. Death Tournament - Volunteers fight to the death all at once in arena. Winner is autocrat.
96. Bardocracy - ...and then the bards ruled.
97. Madocracy - Rule by the insane.
98. Teenocracy - Rule by teenagers.
(A lot of these names I got from http://phrontistery.info/govern.html)
How does this work?Somehow. Get your players to get in on the creative process. There are too many kinds of government for one person to have all the great ideas. There's too much game-able potential here.
The details for how the government is formed are highly mutable. Could be all the rulers get together and decide a government. Could be that existing power structures just take on a lot more power. Could be something completely ridiculous. Go crazy!
How is life in Deadwind?Not as bad as you'd expect (probably) for a town which has a dramatic revolution every three days. (Obviously, we have to do some hand-waving.)
Tyrants, whenever they arise, cannot hold power for more than half a week. Their power is utterly stripped, and nobody has any idea who's going to be in power next. Could be anyone! Could be the very people you're oppressing. Could be Bob Nobody that weirdo who finds absolute power. Hence, there's a tendency for those in charge to not exert their divinely-mandated power too heavily, for fear of the next revolution.
So it all kind of... works. Somehow. Hand-waving. Probably.
Places and ArchitectureArchitects in Deadwind very rarely have the time or resources to complete any projects. Resources get diverted on the whims of current rulers, so big flashy projects like cathedrals or mausoleums or trading halls are unheard of, with one notable exception. As a result, domiciles tend towards hodgepodge houses and lean-tos, with families moving in and out on a regular basis.
The one exception is The Cathedral-Palace of the Revolution. Built three hundred years ago during the Long Rule, and finished two hundred years ago during the Longer Rule. It's an architectural travesty - all supports and no roofs.
Flying buttresses that go nowhere, columns holding nothing up. About seven thrones, four in the process of being scrapped. It looks like a cathedral and a palace were being built in the same place at the same time, superimposed on one another. This is where the current ruling class tends to rule from. It is a place sacred to Liberty.
What happens if Liberty's will is defied?Her statue freakin' comes alive and beats the preemptive revolutionaries to a pulp with her freakin' STONE FISTS OF FREEDOM. She always knows where the offenders are, provided they're still on the island. She can always get to them. Doesn't matter how they've hidden themselves or who's in the way. She's a wrecking ball with the power of a goddess.
Those she doesn't beat mush she'll exile to the BASTION OF FREEDOM (so aptly named because exactly nobody there is free), and teleport them there if they're lucky. If not, she'll throw them. Across the whoooooole island.
Now here's the tricky thing: what exactly constitutes an offense so terrible that Liberty herself will pound your face in? Does merely disobeying authority count? What about crime? What if a tyrant orders you to kill yourself?
I'd like to imagine that crime in pretty big in Deadwind. I think it fits into that loophole between "respecting authority" and "revolution". Revolutionaries get pulp-ified, thieves don't. Provided the thieves are doing so out of personal reasons (needing food/wanting more stuff/domination) and not for revolutionary purposes (overthrowing the government/establishing an underworld power structure), Liberty won't kick their ass or throw them into the Bastion of Freedom.
Which means there's lots of criminals in Deadwind. A lot of selfish criminals. Hell, probably everyone has been a criminal during one government or another, even the decent folk. I imagine non-violent crimes are treated pretty lightly in the city. It's almost something to be expected of.
TL;DR: There are lots of criminals in Deadwind, but no organized crime. Crime anarchy.
Encounters in Deadwind
1-5: Government-specific encounter.
6: 2d4 Clerics of Liberty
[AC Chain (Scrap Metal Armor) HD2 HP10 M7 1d6 Club, 1/day Freedom of Movement/Hold Person] - 1. Very drunk and very political. 2. Rallying a mob, snare drums beating, singing the song of angry men (I'm so, so sorry) 3. Accusing merchants of proliferating capitalistic power structures. 4. Singing praise songs of Liberty very loudly and out of tune, confronting people who don't join them in song.
7. 1d4+1 Pickpockets. Ruse: 1. One starts complaining about today's government, the others rifle pockets. 2. Trip, snatch, grab. 3. One dumps shit bucket from window on second floor on player, runs down to apologize, takes things while cleaning player up. Rest are for security. 4. Pretending to be today's governmental authorities (25% chance they actually are), demanding tax.
8. 1d4 Highwaymen. 3 in 6 they're already accosting some poor bastard. Won't attack larger groups or tough-looking customers.
9. 2d4 Foreign Mercenaries. 1. Protecting an important foreigner 2. Beating up a governmental agent, claiming "diplomatic immunity" 3. Drunk and looking for amusement 4. Looking for trouble, staring confrontationally at pedestrians.
10. 2d6 Wild Dogs.
11. Barricade Elemental [AC Plate+Shield HD5 HP40 M10 Sp Man/2 1d8 Projectile Junk Range: 20/60, may meld into masonry at will] Blocks narrow streets, pesters home squatters, has an intense hatred for the establishment. Made of piled up furniture, bricks, mortal, rocks. Quite flammable. People tend to just avoid.
12. The Goddess Liberty [AC Plate HD18 HP110 M12 1d10+3 Fists of FREEDOM], in all her marble glory, either on her way or currently beating some poor revolutionary sod into a puddle of organs and broken bones. 50% chance she'll throw them into the Bastion of Freedom (from the location of the sentencing).