Go West, Young Wizard
by Alan Clark
A frontier baron, trying to attract more settlers and more trade to his barony, starts a joint venture with a merchant family to build a fortified town in a wilderness area that has good prospects for mining and fur-trapping (or other industries that fit your campaign). A large group of workers and guards will travel to the site to set up basic shelters and a log palisade fort, followed by more workers to start up a trading town and the target industries. PCs enter the story when the merchants send out agents to nearby towns to hire guards, scouts, laborers, craftsmen, and useful specialists for the expedition. The GM can seed the settlement area with whatever dangers and adventures spring to mind: wandering monsters, humanoid marauders, natural disasters, saboteurs hired by a rival merchant family, even undiscovered ruins that await exploration.
(Originally appeared in Re:Quests!, issue #41, September 1996, p. 29; Mary H Kelly, editor.)
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