Thursday, 5 December 2019

12 Reasons Your Tribe Doesn't Want You

Blogger, you officially suck. Luckily, this 19th Century female Fin warrior from the real-life historical Kingdom of Dahomey (now Benin) does not:

Play in City of Ghosts focuses on a band of pariahs forced to the very fringes of burgeoning human society by virtue of their exile. They are forced to seek shelter in the titular City of Ghosts, recently claimed by an individual calling himself "the first king of men", but shunned by many as it is believd to be haunted by the ghosts of its prior residents, the precursor civilisation of The Others.

Players control multiple characters, each one a pariah: after chargen, they have the opportunity to roll on this table to find out why their character was ostracised:

The Reason Why Your tribe Doesn't Want You
D12 You were exiled because...
1 indulged a forbidden love.
You were in a consensual relationship with someone you shouldn't have been...
according to the laws of your tribe.
Maybe they were of a different caste,
or they were of the same gender, or a distant relation...
...or they were a widow[er] not yet passed the proper period of mourning.
In any case, the love was considered taboo and you were exiled,
separated from your true love.
You have vowed to gain enough renown to win them back;
and will take no other until that comes true.
Gain one item your true love gave you as a keepsake.
2 angered the spirits
You don't know what it was you did:
only the spirits know, and for now they won't tell you.
Maybe they just don't like you.
You may not perform nor may you assist in any rituals;
you suffer -1 to all reaction rolls with spirits.
You may not gain any news spells until the reason for their anger is identified
and the hex removed.
3 practised forbidden sorcery
It was whispered to you, in a dream:
when you awoke, you performed the ritual.
Whatever it was, the shaman did not like it.
Gain one ritual and one spell slot.
4 ...your love was unrequited
You were in love with someone you shouldn't have been...
They thought it was just a juvenile obsession,
but you knew differently.
Too late you realised they were right and, humiliated,
you ostracised yourself.
The experience has soured you. Lose 1 charisma, but gain 1 wisdom.
5 displeased the elders
You don't know what it was you did:
only the elders know, and they never told you.
Maybe they just didn't like you.
You were given a pack animal,
sent off into the desert and told never to return.
In addition to the pack animal, you also have another small animal as a pet.
6 were just too clever
You always thought you knew best,
in spite of the numerous times this was proven wrong.
Your tribe tolerated it for a while, but one day your folly cost them dearly.
Perhaps it even cost someone's life. What went wrong?
If your wisdom is higher than your intelligence, swap them.
Add one to yor intelligence and deduct one from your wisdom.
7 ...of a blood feud with a rival tribe
By rights you should be dead.
The feud between the two tribes demanded payment with your blood...
...but your family could not bear it.
Instead, you were stripped of everything and abandoned to the wilderness.
Lose all your items.
Gain two points of constitution.
8 were a thief
Your light fingers got you into trouble once too often.
You never grew out of your adolescent obsession with theft.
Have you grown out of it now?
Gain two items and improve your stealth OR sleight of hand by one die.
9 ...a malevolent spirit haunts you.
You have never seen it, but sometimes feel its presence, when you are alone.
Your tribe feared you, then shunned you.
Your GM will decide what this means for your character.
10 rejected a suitor
The match seemed a good one, so said both clans...
...but it just did not sit right with you.
You felt nothing for them. should you raise a family with one whom you do not love?
Perhaps you could have discussed it with the elders...
...but instead, you decided to run away... on the eve of your wedding.
Gain two items from the dowry/ bridewealth which you stole.
11 were marked by evil from birth
The mutation was an ill omen,
and for as long as you can remember you have kept it hidden.
When the rest of the tribe discovered you,
your parents were forced to abandon you to the wild.
Roll on this biological mutations table

12 violated a weird taboo
Of course, many of the above constitute taboos:
This one was...weirder. Unique.
What was it? Why did you break it?
You lack gravitas, and are obdurate, but your wilfulness grants you
+1 against charm and mind control effects.

  • An ability score increases cannot take a stat higher than 18; any decreases cannot go below 3. 
  • There will be a follow up post concerning spirits, spells and rituals very soon.


  1. There is a melancholy to this entry, that will go well with the setting I think. Being an exile is no joke. I also like the mechanical elements attached to it.

    1. That wasn't my intent, but looking back on them now, it is quite a sequence of sad stories. You are right: exile is no joke, but it does represent an opportunity to rebuild anew. The game is predicated on the conflict between the necessary conflict for resources, and the desire to create a kinder world. At least that's the idea! Oh, it also has talking animals, but more on that soon...

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