Our first map in March is a port/harbour. I took a look around and couldn’t find any port maps with harbour walls and breakwaters in them so thought I’d give that a go. I remember going on holiday to Cornwall as a child and the Cornish fishing villages would often have cute little harbours and walls around them. So I took my inspiration from that and put this together. I’ve left enough space for a larger ship to dock here on the left, but I imagine this is used by smaller boats normally. You could use this as a small village harbour, or part of a larger harbour in a big city like Waterdeep.
- 30×30 Battle Map
I’ve provided the small red fishing boat and the rowboat as PNG files. (Exclusive to Patrons)
Carts trundle by, filled with fresh fish, glistening in the sun. A thousand different metallic hues shimmer across the scaly cargo. A Gull cries overhead, then dives towards a cart and snatches a fish before the irate cart driver can prevent the thievery. Ahead you hear a rumble of breakers hitting the outer wall of the small harbour. The wind is brisk and as you enter the harbour’s square you see fine mist and water crest the breakwater that protects the bay from the ocean. On the water before you bob fishing boats of all sizes and shapes, some masted, some not. On the wooden gangways hard faced fisherman unload their latest catch.
You hold up the note and read:
“The cargo will arrive on the morrow in the hold of the Scarlet Rose, it must be moved at all haste to the Shinfields refectory. Do NOT open it, it must remain sealed until the warding circle is ready.”
You notice a brightly painted boat moored at the nearest gangway, a commotion is drawing the attention of those nearby. It seems the Harbour master is insisting on taking stock of the boats cargo. Rushing forward you glimpse a crowbar in an officials hand prying open a large dark wooden box. “This can’t be good” you think, just before the screaming starts.
Notes and Tips
- The air smells of ozone, rotten seaweed baking in the sun, both fresh and old fish, as well as the underlying stank of the city in general.
- A harbour is a busy place during the day, make sure to have seaman and merchants running this way and that during any encounter. Some may feel they can help out, poor poor fools!
- I just love the sequence in Dracula where he arrives in England on the ghost ship, due to him eating everyone. Have an abandoned ship drift into harbour and then have something pop out when the party is asked to investigate.
- The carcass of a huge sea monster has washed into the harbour, it turns out to be infested with parasites.
- Smugglers get caught by the harbour master, they make a bolt for it and the party get to stop them.
- Pirates attack! The party defend the entrance of the harbour.
- Have the party fight their way towards a ship that is leaving, can they make it in time?
And I think that’s about it for this launch! Thanks for taking the time to read this and happy adventuring!
- Tropical/Desert + no boat variants
- Nighttime variants of both