Friday, 12 June 2020

THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT

Extra-planar travel is not without consequence: upon returning from other planes of reality, individuals will find the world they once knew has altered in some way... sometimes subtly, but sometimes significantly.

Public domain image.

This concept is inspired by two tropes in pop culture, one well-established, the other on its fringes: the butterfly of doom and the Mandela Effect.
In short, a trip to the other side will (probably) alter reality in some way.

Because this is me, this alteration will be determined by rolling on a random table.

...but also, because this is me, there's going to be some unnecessary complications and granularity to that table.


A Note About Alterations

These alterations range from the minor to the major, and can represent utter upheaval in your campaign world. If you run campaigns with carefully crafted plots and well-laid railroads, do not use this device. 

Or use it and fudge the results to fit your pre-conceived notion of what should happen. I can't stop you being EVIL and a CHEAT.

It is important to note that no matter how monumental these alterations are, only the PCs—and specifically those PCs who embarked on the extra-planar jaunt—will realise that anything has altered. As far as everyone is concerned, things have always been this way.

It's all the more fun if PCs chase red herrings looking for the source of this curse (including false hydras), perhaps only putting two-and-two together when their next expedition to the beyond results in a similar reality shift.

Dice
You roll two dice. The first is a D4 and determines which column to read down. This die enables randomisation between a variety of different effects.

The second is a D6 (or bigger) and determines the row to be read across. The size of this die varies in accordance to how long the PCs spend in the other realm. The table is designed to go up to D20, it is up to the GM how best to coordinate die size with time spent in the spirit realm- the longer they spend their, the greater the odds of things being weird when they return.

Additionally, modifiers can be applied in accordance with how much the PCs altered in the realm they visited. This shifts the range of possibilities from the minor to the more serious. Examples include:
+1 for destroying a minor spirit
+3 for slaying an elemental
+6 for destroying a greater daemon 

These modifications are cumulative.

The Table
...is displayed below. Click to download or view in a larger format.


5 comments:

  1. It reminds me 'Dimension of Miracle' by R. Shekley, and if chained together, it can quickly generate the whole 'twisted mirror' dimension. Very handy. Thank you very much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, thank you! I'd not heard of that until now: I shall check it out.

      Delete
  2. Surely Elon Musk will be interested in these important findings :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I tried calling him but he blocked my number. I think it's because he knows—deep down, in the vacuum of his soul-hole—that Grimes is utterly in love with me.

      Delete