Open discussion: BUILD A CITY 4.0!!!

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Like the point that there was no out and out leader founding this place. A refugee town probably wouldn't have a strong head, atleast not for a while.
What if there was someone there when the refugees got to the redoubt? I just had an idea about a small band of dragonborn who inhabit the old redoubt. When the refugees approach they see a distant fire, high up in the pass, a point of light in the distance. The warriors could welcome the refugees and incorporate into the new town, adding diversity and some knowledge of the terrain. Maybe they protect a small clutch of eggs, or perhaps they too have had their numbers reduced of late and their own light would have soon flickered out.

Again, just thinking with my keyboard.

I like the cliffside images and the suggested map. Maybe I will break out my sketchbook and work up an elevation sketch of the redoubt in the pass, the steps, and the waterfall and small lake.
What if there was someone there when the refugees got to the redoubt? I just had an idea about a small band of dragonborn who inhabit the old redoubt. When the refugees approach they see a distant fire, high up in the pass, a point of light in the distance. The warriors could welcome the refugees and incorporate into the new town, adding diversity and some knowledge of the terrain. Maybe they protect a small clutch of eggs, or perhaps they too have had their numbers reduced of late and their own light would have soon flickered out.

Again, just thinking with my keyboard.

I like the cliffside images and the suggested map. Maybe I will break out my sketchbook and work up an elevation sketch of the redoubt in the pass, the steps, and the waterfall and small lake.

Or, alternatively, one of the refugees is a dragonborn under the same circumstances. Although, in either case we'd need to explain why the dragonborn have congregated in a group dynamic; from what I've read dragonborn are mostly solitary individuals, sharing many traits of the dragon brethren. Perhaps the dragonborn had found the clutch while visiting the city and in the devestation had vowed to protect and raise it until it was of age. (Brainstorm: perhaps during the journey the dragonborn succumbed to some tragedy, and left the clutch in the care of one of the other refugees. As a result, the wyrmling(s), being truly orphaned, end raised by the city as a whole and entering into non-conventional professions while still keeping their inherent natural qualities (whatever they are.)

Anyway, I look forward to what you come up with.
What if, assuming that the redoubt was already occupied, the people there didn't want the refugees? If a race of dragonborne had a clutch there, they might see people as dangerous and a menace, a view which could still exist today.

Alternatively, what if it wasn't one of the PC races there? A tribe of nomadic kobolds sheltered during the winter here.

How about: "When the refugees first came here to *town* they found a relatively peaceful solace from the fire and flames. They settled down and started to build a new community. Life was hard, that first year, many succumbed to sickness or accident, some trades had to be totally rediscovered ("is anyone here a blacksmith? No? Cr*p"), and crops had to be planted from what few seeds the refugees could scrounge or steal from the old city. However, nothing could match the battles that would be fought that winter.

The redoubt had been a refuge for the Tyrmannuck kobold tribe for decades, and they were not happy to see new arrivals stealing their water, inhabiting their nests, and trespassing on their grounds. For four weeks the kobolds engaged in out and out warfare, guerilla tactics, and sabotage..."

Eventually the people struck a truce with the kobolds, and allow them to stay during the winter months. This could either be a cause of celebration (to lighten spirits, encourage the 'tourists' to trade, or just as a rememberance of an end of fighting) or near hostility and tension throughout the entire city. The refugees didn't have it easy once they got to the valley, they had to overcome obstacles almost as bad as the original disaster.

Maybe the dragonborne could be the link between the people and kobolds, and thus have a special role in the villiages safety, acting as emissaries and translators.
Dragonborn are described as having clans of 20 to 50 relatives, though are often solitary. Clutches of eggs would be rare, as it seems that a female lays only one at a time.

The question of why the redoubt isn't inhabited, but is known to some of the refugees, wore on me. It seemed that the last surviving handful of dragonborn of a clan living in the redoubt and welcoming the weary travelers into a dry shelter, would be a good starting point for our new endeavor.
I like the cliffside images and the suggested map. Maybe I will break out my sketchbook and work up an elevation sketch of the redoubt in the pass, the steps, and the waterfall and small lake.

Some public domain photographs for inspiration:

Yosemite Valley
Bridalveil Falls
URL=http://travel.webshots.com/photo/2311680870039241787QDWFVO]IMAGE(http://inlinethumb11.webshots.com/34314/2311680870039241787S500x500Q85.jpg)[/url]

snip
What if, assuming that the redoubt was already occupied, the people there didn't want the refugees? If a race of dragonborne had a clutch there, they might see people as dangerous and a menace, a view which could still exist today.

Alternatively, what if it wasn't one of the PC races there? A tribe of nomadic kobolds sheltered during the winter here.

How about: "When the refugees first came here to *town* they found a relatively peaceful solace from the fire and flames. They settled down and started to build a new community. Life was hard, that first year, many succumbed to sickness or accident, some trades had to be totally rediscovered ("is anyone here a blacksmith? No? Cr*p"), and crops had to be planted from what few seeds the refugees could scrounge or steal from the old city. However, nothing could match the battles that would be fought that winter.

The redoubt had been a refuge for the Tyrmannuck kobold tribe for decades, and they were not happy to see new arrivals stealing their water, inhabiting their nests, and trespassing on their grounds. For four weeks the kobolds engaged in out and out warfare, guerilla tactics, and sabotage..."

Eventually the people struck a truce with the kobolds, and allow them to stay during the winter months. This could either be a cause of celebration (to lighten spirits, encourage the 'tourists' to trade, or just as a rememberance of an end of fighting) or near hostility and tension throughout the entire city. The refugees didn't have it easy once they got to the valley, they had to overcome obstacles almost as bad as the original disaster.

Maybe the dragonborne could be the link between the people and kobolds, and thus have a special role in the villiages safety, acting as emissaries and translators.

Kobolds were done in TBACT2, but still a good idea. I don't see any reason for a dying clan of dragonborn to turn away the refugees in a points of light setting... maybe that's just me.

We might want to wait on more antagonists (other than the trapped/bound dragon/monster of destruction). I'm waiting for the new MM to see what creatures might lurk in the forests and mountains around the redoubt city.

On another note (not sparked by any particular post): I think that we should concentrate on building an interesting and organic point of light to insert into campaigns, rather than an adventure site. While the well of many worlds idea may make the city an important crossroads in the future, there seem to be a few ideas floating around out there that seem more oriented towards interesting adventure sites rather than a point of light amidst the sea of darkness. Enough darkness will encroach upon our point of light, that I don't think that we need to incorporate so much (monstrous) intrigue into the foundation of our city.
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What if, assuming that the redoubt was already occupied, the people there didn't want the refugees? If a race of dragonborne had a clutch there, they might see people as dangerous and a menace, a view which could still exist today.

Alternatively, what if it wasn't one of the PC races there? A tribe of nomadic kobolds sheltered during the winter here.

How about: "When the refugees first came here to *town* they found a relatively peaceful solace from the fire and flames. They settled down and started to build a new community. Life was hard, that first year, many succumbed to sickness or accident, some trades had to be totally rediscovered ("is anyone here a blacksmith? No? Cr*p"), and crops had to be planted from what few seeds the refugees could scrounge or steal from the old city. However, nothing could match the battles that would be fought that winter.

The redoubt had been a refuge for the Tyrmannuck kobold tribe for decades, and they were not happy to see new arrivals stealing their water, inhabiting their nests, and trespassing on their grounds. For four weeks the kobolds engaged in out and out warfare, guerilla tactics, and sabotage..."

Eventually the people struck a truce with the kobolds, and allow them to stay during the winter months. This could either be a cause of celebration (to lighten spirits, encourage the 'tourists' to trade, or just as a rememberance of an end of fighting) or near hostility and tension throughout the entire city. The refugees didn't have it easy once they got to the valley, they had to overcome obstacles almost as bad as the original disaster.

Maybe the dragonborne could be the link between the people and kobolds, and thus have a special role in the villiages safety, acting as emissaries and translators.

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Dragonborn are described as having clans of 20 to 50 relatives, though are often solitary. Clutches of eggs would be rare, as it seems that a female lays only one at a time.

The question of why the redoubt isn't inhabited, but is known to some of the refugees, wore on me. It seemed that the last surviving handful of dragonborn of a clan living in the redoubt and welcoming the weary travelers into a dry shelter, would be a good starting point for our new endeavor.

But then we run the risk of becoming too busy, which is something I think we should avoid, especially in a "points-of-light" environment. Don't get me wrong, I like the ideas; yet, I don't know if their well-suited to what we're trying to accomplish.
Some public domain photographs for inspiration:

Yosemite Valley
Bridalveil Falls
URL=http://travel.webshots.com/photo/2311680870039241787QDWFVO]IMAGE(http://inlinethumb11.webshots.com/34314/2311680870039241787S500x500Q85.jpg)[/url]


I was thinking about the waterfall flowing in parts over the steps (natural switchbacks) of the pass. I guess we all have different mental images in our heads right now. Definitely another great installment of inspiration by Dougan Axehammer.
But then we run the risk of becoming too busy, which is something I think we should avoid, especially in a "points-of-light" environment. Don't get me wrong, I like the ideas; but, I don't know if their well-suited to what we're trying to accomplish yet.

To clarify, I was talking about a handful (3-5) dragonborn at most with perhaps 2 or 3 eggs. Just something to indicate that there is no "virgin" land left in the world and that everyone is in need of help, and also add some racial diversity and area knowledge to the new city.
Some public domain photographs for inspiration:

This one seems most like the city to me.

Ok, thinking actual city wise now:

How old is the city? Was it founded a generation ago or a century ago?

How much traffic does it see from outside lands? A large amount would be conducive to trade, but without large amounts of traffic and trading the city would have to produce most of it's own goods.

So, if they do trade, why? Are they in a good location? Do they have a resource nobody else has?

And if they don't, what resources would they have on hand? Forests and mountains are easy, so we have wood, stone, probably minerals too. A small valley might be able to supply enough grain and veggies to support a small city but definitely not a large one.
To clarify, I was talking about a handful (3-5) dragonborn at most with perhaps 2 or 3 eggs. Just something to indicate that there is no "virgin" land left in the world and that everyone is in need of help, and also add some racial diversity and area knowledge to the new city.

Perhaps then they're initially wary of the intrusion into their normal routines. I think that tension should be the key here, to highlight the element of "twilight". (I have had an idea brewing in my head about a group of humanoids refuting the refugees "claim" on the pass and the valley.)
Tension builds drama and the oldest form of tension is racial. That and religious.
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This one seems most like the city to me.

Ok, thinking actual city wise now:

How old is the city? Was it founded a generation ago or a century ago?

How much traffic does it see from outside lands? A large amount would be conducive to trade, but without large amounts of traffic and trading the city would have to produce most of it's own goods.

So, if they do trade, why? Are they in a good location? Do they have a resource nobody else has?

And if they don't, what resources would they have on hand? Forests and mountains are easy, so we have wood, stone, probably minerals too. A small valley might be able to supply enough grain and veggies to support a small city but definitely not a large one.

The city we are creating will be new, brand new. No buildings, no crops, unexploited resources, no outside trade, the works. The denizens will originally be survivors from a recently destroyed city, struggling to reclaim hope and a future. (Having a map on hand will serve as source of inspiration.)
This one seems most like the city to me.

Ok, thinking actual city wise now:

How old is the city? Was it founded a generation ago or a century ago?

How much traffic does it see from outside lands? A large amount would be conducive to trade, but without large amounts of traffic and trading the city would have to produce most of it's own goods.

So, if they do trade, why? Are they in a good location? Do they have a resource nobody else has?

And if they don't, what resources would they have on hand? Forests and mountains are easy, so we have wood, stone, probably minerals too. A small valley might be able to supply enough grain and veggies to support a small city but definitely not a large one.

The "city" doesn't exist yet. That is the whole point of the Build a City Thread. To build a city from Day 1, Month 1.

Which reminds me: what kind of calendar should we use? Are we going with a standard Jan-Dec?
That would be the easiest to follow and for others to adapt. (Although, it might also be interesting to invent one.) More tomorrow though, I'm tired.
*Goes back and looks at old TBACT threads*

Ah, I see.
Thinking about practical reasons why the citizens might stick to building houses up the steep slopes rather than on that much flatter valley floor, I took another mental look at the river/stream running along the valley.

What if the river flooded out over the valley floor each winter? It would make the soil there much more fertile, but also lead to ongoing problems of higher and lower floods each year. If the water was that much deeper and wider, it would also make the quiet winters a better time to bring narrow boats up river to trade, but a worse time to try and attack (natural moat).
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Several people have mentioned bringing in elements of the points of light setting including me. The two main elements that seem to be most prominent to this discussion are races and fantastic elements/locations.

The races given in Races and Classes are and their incorporation I have read so far in this thread, IIRC:

Humans - Everyone seems to treat this as the default race of the original city though I have seen no direct confirmation/vote on this.

Dragonborn - Clutch pre-existing in valley or grouped in with original refugees.

Dwarves - Original creator of redoubt, no mention as part of refugees.

Eladrin - No mention.

Elves - One reference of possibly existing previously in nearby forest or perhaps it was a group of refugees that will move into nearby forest.

Halflings - Interest in having the river fordable enough so their water cravavans can reach the new city, no reference as part of the refugees.

Tieflings - No mention.


Now for the fantastic elements of the surrounding lands we have only three things mentioned so far:

Earthberg - Brought up by me as something to use in the new city (a couple of times :P ) or mentioned by Dougan Axehammer as being part of the lighthouse object in original city.

Natural Portal to Other Planes - Cave or well that acts as a way point to other planes (though I personally think the "Well of the Worlds" idea is going a bit far, a gate to a single plane - say the Feywild - is probably best).

Steep Cliffs in Mountainous Valley - Fantastic elements that exist in natural world.

If we are really trying to create a starting element for the new edition we should at least figure out the place, some place, for each of the base races (including determining if humans actually are the default refugees) and incorporate a more fantastic element into the geography in the new city. I like the steep cliffs from an aesthetic point of view, but they are not really the fantastic terrain I think of when I first read the Worlds and Monsters book.
Thinking about practical reasons why the citizens might stick to building houses up the steep slopes rather than on that much flatter valley floor, I took another mental look at the river/stream running along the valley.

What if the river flooded out over the valley floor each winter? It would make the soil there much more fertile, but also lead to ongoing problems of higher and lower floods each year. If the water was that much deeper and wider, it would also make the quiet winters a better time to bring narrow boats up river to trade, but a worse time to try and attack (natural moat).

I think the river would flood seasonally, but to nitpick, it would probably swell during the spring and summer thawing, and slow down during the fall and winter.

Some ideas floated (mine included) about the layout of the valley up to the redoubt and cave present a somewhat steep grade to the valley, not just steep along the sides. This of course is debateable. If we use the map that
james_gaines provided, I could see section B containing most of the city and being fairly steep, but levelling out in section A.

Controlling the seasonal changes of the river is of incredible importance to the first settlers/refugees. The first buildings would likely be built along the sides of the valley, Heros_Backpack, and as the patterns of the riverflow became more predictable, channels and levees would be constructed, and the city would expand down to the edge of the river. so that the flowing water can be exploited (waterwheels and such).

If the valley floor of section A tended to flood, either the flooding would need to be controled to save potential crops, or crops would have to be grown that were resilient to the excessive water. Perhaps something like rice fields.

Also in regards to the map, there is (fortunately) no scale provided, so if we were to decide to confine the majority of the city to section B, and keep A for crops and livestock, we can scale the map to accomodate as needed.
I liked the picture of Bridalveil Falls the most.


It changed my mental image though. I see the fort/tower/redoubt/whatever being up at the top near where that flat area is around the genesis of the waterfall.

Perhaps the way you get there is via a cave that is behind the bottom of the waterfall. A vertically spiralling ramp of sorts was carved out of the inside of the mountain in order to get to the top. Not steps, but a ramp...similar to a wheelchair ramp. The carved out area would be fairly small though; the diameter of it would be roughly that of a castle tower. The ramp would be wide enough to fit a few people across and perhapswide enough for a supply wagon, but not big enough for anything much larger than that.

Now, this would pose the question of how they defended the additional entrance. Perhaps originally the bottom was cut off by a portcullis and a few guards, but over time the portcullis rusted and withered away. Also, if anyone did manage to get through, they'd still have a tough time fitting an invasion force through the entrance. Being that it's a spiral, the defenders could perch archers at the top and pick off the attackers as they make the climb or steal a page from the Indiana Jones book and roll large boulders down the ramp.


My ideas for town names: Rock Haven, Stone Haven, Castillo de Rocas, Felsen Zeer
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Interestingly, Bridalveil is in the northwest (Oregon) along the Columbia river (the boarder of Oregon and Washington).

I like the spiral staircase idea. It could be an interesting feature of the redoubt, with both a hidden (behind the waterfall) and protected (via guards and portcullis) entrance. It would still fit with the cliff side town (rather than cliff top), which is one of my favorite features of our brainstorming (second only to the redoubt).

I like the waterfall, but I would still like to see, rather than the continuous waterfall, a waterfall broken by the steps/switchbacks of the city/pass.
Interestingly, Bridalveil is in the northwest (Oregon) along the Columbia river (the boarder of Oregon and Washington).

I like the spiral staircase idea. It could be an interesting feature of the redoubt, with both a hidden (behind the waterfall) and protected (via guards and portcullis) entrance. It would still fit with the cliff side town (rather than cliff top), which is one of my favorite features of our brainstorming (second only to the redoubt).

I like the waterfall, but I would still like to see, rather than the continuous waterfall, a waterfall broken by the steps/switchbacks of the city/pass.

I'd be fine with the broken waterfall idea. Obviously I don't expect our town to look exactly like that picture. The picture did cause me to shift creative gears though.


The other main questions which seem to keep coming up are:


How do we fit dragonborn, tieflings, and other less humanoid races into the settlement?

I was under the impression that the original town they came from was a fairly successful town, so I would imagine that there would be a variety of races and classes passing through.

The dragonborn fluff does seem to possibly indicate that maybe they wouldn't settle in large communities, but that doesn't mean they wouldn't fit. Perhaps there were two or three dragonborn who owned a local business in the original settlement. On the other hand, perhaps the few dragonborn who were original inhabitants of the new point of lightwere refugees from somewhere else, and by pure chance and luck they happened to stumble across the redoubt at the same time as the refugees from the town. Perhaps originally it was a pair of dragonborn who were trying to find somewhere to safely elope to get away from their unapproving fueding families. Maybe a group of dragonborn were outcast from somewhere due to being members of an unpopular political or religious movement (another one of the original ideas of the thread tied in.)



Is there anything or anyone currently inhabiting the place?


I like the idea of some sort of animals or animal being there for the same reasons I cited before. Food being the main one.
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On the ecology aspect; we are assuming the valley is pretty fertile in order to grow crops (although it doesn't need to be, maybe the barren land is one of the things they have to overcome). This would attract other animals there too. Is it a typical european wilderness, meaning wolves, bears, deer, etc, or is are we mixing it up, meaning, owlbears, tigers, lions, giant tortoises, stuff like that?

Shoot, now I just like the idea of giant tortoises living here. Maybe there could be one or two in the fields. They could be just like living landmarks/mascots for the town.

Also, climate, I heard one suggestion for pacific NW weather, which suits me fine, but for the sake of brainstorming, what about having a definite wet/dry season, or very heavy snowfall during the winter?
On the ecology aspect; we are assuming the valley is pretty fertile in order to grow crops (although it doesn't need to be, maybe the barren land is one of the things they have to overcome). This would attract other animals there too. Is it a typical european wilderness, meaning wolves, bears, deer, etc, or is are we mixing it up, meaning, owlbears, tigers, lions, giant tortoises, stuff like that?

Shoot, now I just like the idea of giant tortoises living here. Maybe there could be one or two in the fields. They could be just like living landmarks/mascots for the town.

Also, climate, I heard one suggestion for pacific NW weather, which suits me fine, but for the sake of brainstorming, what about having a definite wet/dry season, or very heavy snowfall during the winter?

I like the idea of having all four seasons (including wet, dry, and snow.)

I actually like the turtle idea too. Would you mind if they were water tortoises?


Personally, I guess I assumed we'd have bears, wolves, mountain lions, and things of that nature, but I wouldn't mind having a few animals which were out of place when compared to the real world. I'm sure there would be a few monsters mixed into the ecology.
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If the city has flowing water it can have a few things that are important for our setting, the first one being a mill. Any sort of smithy(s) will also need a water source. Commerce could also move down stream/river to other cities, and goods could be shipped there. This seems to make sense.

I guess a good question to ask is what made the refugees move from the other city? Was it racial intolerance or just graft (which is certainly a good enough reason). If the city is free to all beings of good will all the races and classes can dwell here. Ian
If the city has flowing water it can have a few things that are important for our setting, the first one being a mill. Any sort of smithy(s) will also need a water source. Commerce could also move down stream/river to other cities, and goods could be shipped there. This seems to make sense.

I guess a good question to ask is what made the refugees move from the other city? Was it racial intolerance or just graft (which is certainly a good enough reason). If the city is free to all beings of good will all the races and classes can dwell here. Ian

If you look at the earlier pages, we came up with why they left the old city.


Long story short: insane Gold Dragon started rampaging the town they came from.
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I was thinking the tortoises would be kin to the galapagos tortoise, only about the size of a VW bug to a Hummer. Although I don't see why they couldn't be aquatic.

How do we want the weather patterns? Is there a lot of precipitation? Is there a definite wet season or would it rain throughout the year?

On the river: Considering the land around the city is supposed to be very hilly or clifflike, I think that the idea of a river deep enough and safe enough to conduct trade might be a little farfetched. It's possible, but I see this town as being rather isolated.
I was thinking the tortoises would be kin to the galapagos tortoise, only about the size of a VW bug to a Hummer. Although I don't see why they couldn't be aquatic.

I'll vote for the tortoises as official mascots.
How do we want the weather patterns? Is there a lot of precipitation? Is there a definite wet season or would it rain throughout the year?

I think we should go with the classic seasons. As mentioned, melting glaciers and snow should (IMO) flood the stream (and valley during the worst flooding) in the late spring and early summer.
On the river: Considering the land around the city is supposed to be very hilly or clifflike, I think that the idea of a river deep enough and safe enough to conduct trade might be a little farfetched. It's possible, but I see this town as being rather isolated.

There are boats that could navigate a small river/large stream (especially those of small humanoids like halflings), but I don't see the town as any sort of shipping port or anything like that.
IMAGE(http://www.v-liz.com/galapagos/santacruz/highla~1/g-tort3.jpg)
IMAGE(http://www.tortoises-turtles.com/strangeness.jpg)
IMAGE(http://www.erichorvathnaturetours.com/photos/DSCN8995.jpg)
IMAGE(http://www.bythom.com/Images/galtort.jpg)
"The dire tortoise very slowly goes in for the kill!"

Sorry, the third turtle picture made me do it.
"The dire tortoise very slowly goes in for the kill!"

Sorry, the third turtle picture made me do it.

If we wanted them to be able to defend themselves a bit more, they could always be dire snapping turtles.


At any rate, I really like the giant turtle idea.



For a second animal suggestion, could we have either llamas (essentially small furry camels) or bactrian camels (the type which are normally found in colder; rockier climates)?


I also imagine that mountain goats would be common in such an area.
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On tortoises
I was thinking the tortoises would be kin to the galapagos tortoise, only about the size of a VW bug to a Hummer. Although I don't see why they couldn't be aquatic.

I'll vote for the tortoises as official mascots.I think we should go with the classic seasons.

I rather like this idea too. We could even cross the galapagos with a snapping turtle, making the tortoises omnivorous and slightly more aggressive. I'm picturing the turtles/tortoises congregating around the lake and deeper parts of the river catching fish and eating mosses, ferns, and grasses. For Dungeons and Dragons, it will make our valley rather unique from an ecological perspective. (I'm also getting a kick thinking about the reaction from "DnD=WoW" nay-sayers: "See the game even has "Snapjaws". :D )

On seasons
How do we want the weather patterns? Is there a lot of precipitation? Is there a definite wet season or would it rain throughout the year?

As mentioned, melting glaciers and snow should (IMO) flood the stream (and valley during the worst flooding) in the late spring and early summer.

The City of Redding and surrounding communities (where I'm from) sits at the top of the Central Californian valley, through which the Sacramento River flows from our glorious Mt. Shasta to the deltas in the San Fransisco Bay area. While our yearly weather is somewhat Mediterranean, even here, our year is basically broken into four seasons as well: hot, typically dry summers; mild, rainy winters; with two rather short, generally windy transistion periods (we've even had hurricane force winds.) On occasion, we'll get snow, but it's usually not in any significant amounts ( wish I could have snow) except in the mountain ranges we sit between. So aside from the obvious climate change, I can't really see much difference in seasons between here and the sub-temperate mountain "rainforest" we're trying to create; snow in the winter, a rainy spring to early summer, the late summer/early autumn being cloudy but somewhat warm, and a fairly blustery late fall along with some occurances of fog through out the year.

On the River
On the river: Considering the land around the city is supposed to be very hilly or clifflike, I think that the idea of a river deep enough and safe enough to conduct trade might be a little farfetched. It's possible, but I see this town as being rather isolated.

There are boats that could navigate a small river/large stream (especially those of small humanoids like halflings), but I don't see the town as any sort of shipping port or anything like that.

I agree with the halflings and the fact that the town shouldn't have any major trade (at least not early on), and certainly not on the river. Perhaps the halflings could even begin taming the tortoises as pets and/or beasts of burden.
IMAGE(http://www.farhorizon.com/europe/images/images-sicily/Erice_cliff_with_hunting_lodge.jpg)
IMAGE(http://www.hiltonpond.org/images/TurtleSnappingHatchling02.jpg)
Dire Snapping Tortoise (infant)
I like the idea of dire giant snapping tortoises! Halflings would love them! I love them! I vote we forgo voting and adopt the dire giant snapping turtle as our official city mascot!
Dire giant snapping tortoises! Seconded!
I like the idea of dire giant snapping tortoises! Halflings would love them! I love them! I vote we forgo voting and adopt the dire giant snapping turtle as our official city mascot!

Dire giant snapping tortoises! Seconded!

I support the idea.


Actually a pretty fitting mascot when you think about it -armored and dangerous when provoked.


Axehammer, where you live sounds similar to where I live, but I think it's a little colder here. I live near the Appalachian Mountains in Pennsylvania. It usually snows during winter.

This isn't a great picture, but it should give some idea: IMAGE(http://www.peakware.com/photos/1076i.jpg)


This one is a little better, but still not the best pic: IMAGE(http://www.peakware.com/photos/1076h.jpg)


Anyway, my point is that I can relate to a lot of your descriptions for weather and climate.
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So are we counting that as a Proposal and two yes votes for Dire Giant Snapping Tortoises? If so, then one more yes vote makes it our official mascot!
I vote yes.

And so does he:



edit: Ding! Page 5
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