Mists of Shadow Moor
Most of the folk in the Baronies live and die within a score of miles from their birthplace and can spend their entire lives without ever knowingly encountering the supernatural. When combined with cultures rich in suspicion and superstition, the result is xenophobia. This is expressed as an Outcast rating, which significantly impacts social reactions by the common folk.
When normal folk are reacting to a group, they react to the highest rating among the group. Outcast ratings do not apply to friends, fellow adventurers, or particularly open-minded folks. Particular modifiers also do not apply to those who share the same source for that particular modifier, such as a wizard interacting with a non-player character arcanist.
Finally, characters can gain Outcast rating “offsets” with particular groups by performing good deeds; stopping a crime, defeating a monster preying on the community, or helping a farmer harvest crops are acts that tend to dispel some of the community’s fear and suspicion.
Outcast Rating and Modifiers
Characters start with a score of zero, which is modified as noted below. All modifiers are cumulative. Note that, since modifiers are often based on circumstances or what is fully known about a character, you may have to calculate Outcast Ratings on the fly for each major interaction with common folk.
- Known divine spell-user (+ 3). This includes spells gained from feats or racial traits. (The Baronies are strictly monotheistic; ignore this penalty if the divine spells come from the Lawgiver.)
- Known arcane spell-user (+ 5). This includes spells gained from feats or racial traits. It also includes things that look like arcane magic, like the Breath Weapon racial trait.
- Appears too at-home in the wilderness (+ 2). Barbarians, Druids, Rangers, and Paladins with the Oath of the Ancients are affected but can conceal this modifier in the short-term. This also applies to Wander (the Outlander background feature).
- Ethnically foreign (+ 1 to + 3). DM’s determination, based on degree of foreignness. Monks are all obvious immigrants with strange mannerisms (+ 3), as there are no local martial arts traditions.
- Caliban appearance (variable rating increase). See the Races page for details.
- The pale, deathly appearance provided by the Cold One feat (+ 2). See the Feats page for details.
- For each piece of aberrant equipment (+ 1). See the Equipment page for details.
- Recent events are foul (+ 1 to + 3). DM’s determination, based on recent instances of local bad fortune, ill omens, and the like.
- Favorable background (- 2). Anything that makes commoners sympathize, particularly By Popular Demand (Entertainer feature), Heart of Darkness (Haunted One feature), and Rustic Hospitality (Folk Hero feature).
- Offsets and good deeds (variable rating reduction). Reduce Outcast rating based on the history of good deeds known to these folk.
Outcast Rating Reactions (0-5)
Starting attitudes are typically indifferent.
Village: Villagers are cautious, but may offer shelter in their homes if treated well. If someone has a separate barn, visitors may be allowed to sleep there. Innkeepers can be bargained down from initial pricing if there is space available. Other inn guests eagerly share news, exchanging tales of where they have come from.
Isolated Manor: Guards allow their guests in the gate and chat with them while waiting for the master of the house to appear. Guest quarters are available, up to several nights, along with food served at the common table with any other travelers. Religious services and other activities are open to these guests.
Outcast Rating Reactions (6-10)
Charisma checks for interacting with these folk suffer disadvantage. Starting attitudes are typically hostile.
Village: Villagers do not allow these outsiders into their homes or property, and bar the doors and keep watch all night if they camp on common ground. Innkeepers set prices very high and resist bargaining. Other inn guests ignore these visitors as much as possible and keep a careful eye on them.
Isolated Manor: A guard exits the manor to greet the characters, but they must wait outside the gate for the master of the house to admit them. The guards talk very little and keep an eye on the outsiders. The outsiders may be housed (for a single night) in an isolated part of the grounds. Though fed at the common table, one or two guards will always be nearby to keep a watchful eye. Other travelers will not talk to the outsiders.
Outcast Rating Reactions (11+)
Charisma checks for interacting with these folk suffer disadvantage. If the party is together, such checks are made as group checks (at least half of the group must succeed for anyone to succeed) because at least one member of the group is too foreign to be ignored in conversations with other members. Starting attitudes are typically hostile.
Village: Villagers are not welcoming and will attempt to drive off outcasts who do not leave voluntarily. They will set some sort of watch for the next few days to make sure the outcasts do not attempt to return. The innkeeper completely refuses admittance and threatens to call local authorities to intervene if the outcasts don’t move along.
Isolated Manor: The outcasts are made to wait outside the gate while the master of the house is summoned, and the guards, on high alert, come to reinforce the gate and perimeter. The outcasts might be housed outside the manor walls for a night, and some poor food is brought to them there. There is always at least one guard on hand, with more ready to appear at the first sound of trouble. The outcasts are escorted away from the manor after one night.