Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Sajavedran Calendar

Click to embiggen. 
I'm preparing to run a Qelong campaign - if you don't know, it's a horrific Southeast Asia setting being poisoned by a misfired magic bomb - and so I'm putting the ol' tools to work.

Here is my Qelong calendar. I based the months off of the Khmer lunar calendar, with Qelong-style syllable replacements. There are ten months for the reasons explained in this post - but in short, it's easier to not have to remember different numbers of days for different months. The yellow is, of course, the dry season, and the green is wet - changing around what would be November and April. Meqasay is the "new year."

Basically, use it to keep track of major events, past and future. At least three of the four factions in Qelong are actively attempting to increase their power, and while you can certainly have that be a foggy, unresolved background, having them dynamically clash and maneuver is, I think, much more interesting. With the calendar, you can simply jot down future clashes and some notes on them, for the party to interfere with (or ignore.)

As for the year itself, the Khmer calendar marks years with zodiac signs in the way the Chinese calendar does, but also respects a multi-year cycle, where each animal also advances in number - resetting every 60 years.

For Qelong, I decided to modify the cycle so that each decade is marked by a single zodiac sign, creating a 120-year cycle. However, changing to the next sign is usually accompanied by some sort of portent, determining the mood of the next few years, and the lack of portents can sometimes extend the "decade" well past its normal expiration date. Therefore, the dying land of Sajavedra is still in the Years of the Dog - with no end in sight.

To reflect this, add two rumors to the rumor table - they can be included normally, or you can use them in lieu of the first two duplicate rolls.

The Mage War began in the Years of the Rooster, and it will end in the Years of the Pig. After that, we'll face the long Years of the Rat...
The sign of the zodiac usually changes every ten years. But we've seen twelve Years of the Dog, and I hear there will be many more...