(So much more than just another bloke in a dress.)
“Listen to the rain pounding on the rooftops, the waters pouring down swollen guttering and over broken brickwork and haemorrhaged stone.”
“It’s not fit enough to put a cat out master.”
“Cats no, homunculi yes. Get out and take me some notes about the weather tonight maggotling, I may have need of them…”
The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook gives useful rules about various types of weather and the effects it has upon adventures. However, anyone who has ventured out on foul nights or attempted to walk through a wood in strong wind or across a hill in a thunderstorm knows that it’s not just the weather you have to contend with but also the environment. Tree branches lash at you in the gale; vehicles skid in the rain; creatures panic in the storm…
The For One Night Only rules address those situations further by providing you with some random ideas to use in addition to the standard rules. Use them at moments when, for example, the PCs are battling creatures in the streets, dashing along an alley chasing a slippery thief, or brawling drunkenly outside the tavern. The variant examples here give you options to run some different takes on adventures in various settings and under various effects.
This collection gives you some quick additional variations and encounters for an urban adventure when it rains heavily, a situation that occurs all too readily in many European-based fantasy settings. Use them in a single session to spice things up or use them to add to street encounters in your adventure.
Assign areas randomly or choose the most appropriate place yourself: for example, livestock (#8) may suddenly appear from an alleyway immediately at the PC’s sides.
1) Guttering Falls: A section of iron guttering collapses under the weight of the rainwater and plummets onto the street below: 1d4 random squares within a 20-ft.-square area below the wall are struck with falling, rusting guttering. Characters below are struck, taking 2d6 damage (Reflex DC 15). Characters may notice the guttering, reducing the save DC to 8 (Perception DC 10).
2) Slippery Street: The incessant rain has turned a mossy, 20-ft.-square section of the street (or four random 10-ft.-square areas if you prefer) into a slippery area. Acrobatics (balance) checks (DC 5) are required for characters passing through this area. A Perception check (DC 15) notices the slippery sections.
3) Slight Squall: For 1d4 rounds, the effects of rain are increased by 50%: −6 to all Perception checks and ranged weapons, 75% chance of extinguishing naked flames per round.
4) Squall: For 1d12 rounds, the effects of rain are increased by 50%: −6 to all Perception checks and ranged weapons, 75% chance of extinguishing naked flames per round.
5) Flying Flotsam—Tarpaulin: An untethered tarpaulin rushes by, striking a random character. The character can make a Reflex save (DC 12) to avoid the tarpaulin. Otherwise, the character is entangled until escape: Reflex save (DC 5) or Escape Artist check (DC 5).
6) Flying Flotsam—Hay: Similar to the tarpaulin above, except 1d3 characters are affected: each must make a Reflex save (DC 12) or be blinded for 1d2 rounds.
7) Hidden Open Drain: Floodwater covers a 20-ft.-square section of the street ahead, disguising a ruptured drain. The drain, which is 5 ft. wide and covered by crude boards, now lies open and is 20 ft. deep. A Perception check (DC 10) spots the hole.
8 ) Livestock: Cows, llamas, or similar animals (1d6) either break free from their tether nearby or are accidentally released by a startled passerby on the way to market who slips in the rain 10–60 ft. from a random PC. The creatures dash randomly about (use a d8 to decide which square the creatures heads in), moving 30 ft./round. If they pass through the same square as a character, a Reflex save (DC 8 ) is required to avoid being barged and the character considered staggered for 1 round. If characters attack the livestock, use the statistic block for a pony (Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary), but do not give the creature any attacks.
9) Engorged Drain: A drain bursts and covers a 20-ft.-square section of the street with foul-smelling water as well as 1d4 rats. Characters in this section of the street must make an Acrobatics (balance) check (DC 5) to remain standing; this lasts for 1d4 rounds, until the water washes into other drains nearby. The rats can be dire rats if you wish and may attack if threatened.
10) Chamber Pot: A chamber pot is emptied from somewhere above by an NPC who does not notice people below through the rain. The contents hit a random square, and characters in the square must make a Reflex save (DC 8 ) or be sickened for 1d2 rounds.
11) Smog Street: A squally wind blows the smoke from chimneys on this street back to the ground. The resulting smog is the equivalent of obscuring mist and fills a random 20-ft.-square section of street. It lasts 1d6 rounds, until the wind blows it in another direction.
12) Flying Slates: Three slates are blown from the rooftops above and strike random squares in the street below. Characters in these squares face an attack from the sharp slates: ranged +2 (1d4/x3).