Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Greyhawk Districts: The Thieves' Quarter

The Gem of the Flanaess has few rivals in terms of size, prosperity, or majesty.  To assume that a city possessing such wealth and diversity is homogeneous would be folly.  Its streets are, to a new comer, a incomprehensible maze of taverns, tenements, and temples.  However, to the learned observer there is some order to this chaos.  Natives and citizens of Greyhawk broadly recognize ten districts.  Two of these create what is known as the "Old City."  This is the first in a series of posts that will detail each of these as they develop through play.

The Thieves' Quarter (Old City)

One of the two Old City districts, the other being the Slums, the Thieves' Quarter is only slightly more affluent than its neighbor.  The structures here are constructed with a surprising amount of stone, as is the case with the rest of the Old City.  This was done long ago to prevent the cramped buildings from succumbing to fire.  This construction also has the unfortunate effect of being difficult to rebuild and repair, and as such much of the district is in shambles.  The crowded streets make the treatment of sewage difficult, and the small streets make it almost impossible to work in greats that would allow rainwater to take the waste with it.  This problem has lead the Dung Gatherer's Guild to set up their guild house in the Thieves' Quarter.  That way they can more easily get access to the stagnant crap they can sell as fertilizer.

The Thieves' Guild is, rather obviously, rumored to keep its guildhouse somewhere in this district, though only members know its exact location.

The Green Griffin Inn used to be the primary meeting place for the various skullduggers and ne'er-do-wells seeking employment within Greyhawk's walls; however, the management recently made a deal with a group of adventurers that precludes their renting rooms to others.  The bar is still open, but most self respecting leg-breakers wouldn't be caught dead in the place.  "Those assholes have killed the atmosphere."  Boris the bloated bartender serves drinks and provides bread, meat, and "ain't meat" to patrons.  He is known for occasionally belching mysterious substances onto the already unappealing food on occasion.  Boris also runs the establishment, though no one is sure whether or not he is the actual owner.

The Temple of Kos as lies within the Thieves' Quarter.  While not the only temple here, it is certainly the largest.  Built by the Suloise founders of the city long before the settlement obtained the name Greyhawk, the temple resembles nothing so much as a large, stone mead hall.  Despite its size, the number of worshipers it attracts today is relatively small. Only about seventy attend the sacrifices, though in tough times -- such as war or famine -- many more pay him so that he might be placated and delay whatever doom he has in store for them.  These rituals are done twice a day, once at noon and once at midnight.  Usually only a dove or game bird is sacrificed.  It has been centuries since their sacrificial knife has know the taste of human blood.


That is it for now.  I'm currently using a modified version of Zak's Urbancrawl system.  I tend to alter the results in order to make each district of the city possess a unique character.  The above is only what has been detailed through the party's travels in the city, and there are many more locations that have yet to be detailed.  Technically, the Temple of Kos has not been seen at the table, but my wife's character is a shieldmaiden of Kos and so I thought it would be necessary to have some idea what the temple is like.

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