Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Treasure Table - Sample - Hobo Treasures


Partially in response to my previous post, below is a random treasure list useful for generating "Hobo Treasures" for a gonzo hobo themed dungeon node.  It's not as detailed as I would like for a large node as it's not split between large and small packets or magical and mundane treasure.  I'd use this one as an adjunct to personal treasure of the hobogoblins, or whatever denizens of the node carried around in their bindles.  The table might also be useful determining rewards or boons granted to PC's for service to the Hobo King of the Great Northern Jungle.  So feel free to use it in your gonzo D&D, Wampus County or Weird Adventures games.  It's stated up for B/X D&D but pretty system agnostic.

"Hobo and Dog" - 1924
Also includes so wondrous "Deck of Several Things" to torment your players.

Lost Treasures of the Mysterious and Storied Hobo Under-Kingdom
Jug of Most Excellent Firewater.  An ancient brown ceramic jug with a blue glazed interior.  The exterior of the jug is marked with three X’s and a bit cracked, but the strange alchemical product within is a powerful healing draught.  If the entire jug (about three pints) is drunk within a turn it will heal the drinker completely.  It will also require a save vs. poison to not pass out in a pool of vomit.  If poured down the throat of a critically injured character the ‘potion’ will allow an automatic success on any save vs. death.
Chastiser.  A board made from the wood of an ancient Feasting Tree, carved with ornate obscenities, imbued with powerful magic and studded with a single electrum Spike.  The entire object is magical having absorbed the rage of its prior wielders – some of Denethix’s most feared thugs.  While the wielder will go into a berserk rage when rolling a ‘1’ on any attack roll, the board is a +2 club. (1D4+2 damage)
Telltale Heart – A still beating heart wrapped in a dirty and Bloodied Rag.   The heart will cease beating and crumble to dust in 1D4 sessions, but will psychically impart a prophecy (use your favorite method of allowing prophecy) to the first person to touch it when it does.   
Eye of the Eyeless.  A false eye carved from emerald inset in carved Tyrannosaurs tooth. Worth 400 GP.
Carved Coins – A collection of various coins (mostly silver) meticulously carved with the annals of the Hobo Under-Kingdom.  The coins are worth about 50GP in metal content, but 500 GP to a collector of oddities or Art Brut.
Manifesto – An endless and insane manifesto about the rights of the poor, and a secret plot by tentacle creatures to steal something important (Attractive young people? The government? All the Zinc?).  The manifesto is mostly true.  If read closely the rantings reveal the 1st level magic user spell Ventriloquism and the 2nd level spell Magic Mouth.
A collection of broken pocket watches.  A tangled 15lb mass of gears, clock faces and chains, ticking madly and erratically.  The entire bundle is worth 250GP is sold for its gold, silver and tiny jewel content, but 500 GP if sold to a watchmaker as materials and parts.
Worthless Poppet.  A doll made of wine corks and tufts of human hair.  It has human teeth.  Worth 5GP to a motivated buyer.
Silver Spittoon – A battered silver spittoon, sculpted in the form of a squatting, open mouth bureaucrat.  It’s worth 300 GP, and in very questionable taste.
Gutripper – A smallish terrier with a huge head full of drool and serrated teeth.  Gutripper is a terrible opponent and loyal to whomever last fed him.  HD 3, HP 11, AC 6, ATK 1, Damage 1D8+1, MV 40’, SV F3, ML 12, Immune to Poison, Fear and Sleep.
Lost Love – A finely painted gold and shell cameo of a beautiful and androgynous elf.  Worth 500GP, but if kept more than a day, owner must save vs. Spells or be unable to sell it, out of an unwholesome yearning for the cameo's subject.  If sold, save vs. Spells at +2 or be compelled to seek, purchase or otherwise retrieve the cameo.
2,000 CP in an old backpack.  Bag also contains a reddish giant rat fur stole, head attached with red glass eyes (worth 25GP)
Bullets.  Case of 36 cans of high quality refried beans. Worth 16 GP.
Top Hat of the Arbitrator – A battered top hat of burgundy wool.  Inside is the name of a former Star Court judge, long dead. The hat exudes authority to those of the lowest classes.  Once per day the wearer of the hat may issue a single order to an individual or group of the downtrodden (bums, drunkards and tramps) that will act as the Cleric spell Command.  Additionally the hat's wearer gains a +2 Charisma bonus dealing with the impoverished.
Hobo’s Crown.  A crude crown made of discarded food tins and burlap.  Yet set in the brow is dirtied but otherwise fine pearl worth 300 GP.
False Limb – A Simple jointed prosthesis with various bottle tabs and caps hammered into it.  The construction and design is so crude that it’s not clear what limb it replaces.  The prosthesis is magical however, and if placed on the stump of a severed limb it will meld with it and create a functional limb of superior strength (+1) and proper shape (though it’s appearance will be unchanged).
Hateful Poppet.  A 3’ cloth tall doll that seems strangely articulated.  It’s weathered and ancient plastic face all but scraped off.  If the doll is asked for something it will animate in the night and attempt to kill the requester while they sleep – unless the doll is asked to kill someone, in which event it will steal out and do so if possible.  The Poppet is a 3HD creature and attacks as a 3rd Level Assassin.  If the doll is sliced open, its internal structure will be revealed to be the bronzed, glyph inscribed and wired together skeleton of a child.
Deck of Several Things.  A battered deck of strange cards.  They are magical, and contain only the face cards of a normal deck.  Effects are in Table Below, a person may draw only once and the deck disappears in 1D10 draws, cards are not to be replaced after drawing.
Goonie Stick – A thin bone swagger stick with a lead weight affixed to the top of it and the words “Embiggens the Smallest”.  While it is usable as a club (1D4-1 Damage) the Stick is actually a wand. If pointed at a Dwarf, Halfling or similar creature (including Grunkies) while shouting the command word “EMBIGGEN!” it will cause the target to grow as into an Ogre like creature, capable of striking as a 4HD monster, gaining 3HD and doing+2 Damage.   Transformation is temporary (1D6 Turns) and the wand has 1D10+2 charges when found.
Pharaoh’s Jewel.  An ancient golden egg, studded with gems.  It’s worth at least 2,000 GP and possibly more – but it’s cursed.  Anyone who sells it will forever loses 1D4 random attribute points to a rotting wasting disease.

DECK OF SEVERAL THINGS - A moderately powerful magic item in the spirit of the Deck of Many Things, but tawdry.

Jack’s Visage - Develop a hideous sneer you think is dashing (-2 CHR)

False Queen - You will be betrayed by all current and future lovers, you also gain a +1 bonus to CHR when attempting seduction.

Patrimony - Turns out you are a bastard.  Your estranged father leaves you a secret bequest (A small city apartment or similar rural retreat), the lawyer will contact you shortly.

Ace of Hearts - You attract the romantic attentions of an orbital deity – it will do something for you when you need it if you perform the absurd acts it demands.  
Enmity of the Jacks – You are on the blacklist of all gentlemens' clubs now and forever.  Rakes mock you in the street, Tycoons sneer.

Queen’s Mark – Your face is marked with the symbol of the club, gain a +1 bonus to Dexterity and all future Saves vs. Wands.

The King’s Battle – Best the 1D4+1 level fighter who’s seeking you out for a beating in melee combat and he will serve loyally as your henchman

Shillelagh – Any club or similar improvised wooden weapon you wield acts as if under the effect of the 1st Level Druid Spell Shillelagh  (DMG 2D4, +1 hit)
Diamonds (Gems)
Jack’s Eye - You may automatically determine the value and nature of any gems encountered, including magic ones.

Baubles – The next 1D10+1 times your party discovers gems in your presence they will be paste gems worth only 1GP each regardless of stated value

King’s Greed – The character must save vs. spells any time unguarded treasure is found, or dash heedlessly towards it with the intent to seize it.

Ace in a Hole - A large semiprecious gem falls from your body when you are next destitute – worth 1D10X100 GP
Spades (Death)
Death’s Head – The flesh withers from the card holder’s skull.  While this has no physical effect Charisma is permanently reduced to 3.

Kiss of Death - When next the character sleeps they will dream that a skeleton tries to kiss them.  If they refuse its advances nothing happens.  If the character allows the kiss, they will gain a permanent +1 to all saves vs. poison/death.

Dominion – The next blow that should have killed the character will miss.

Doom – You’re doomed, at least for a while.  All attacks do maximum damage when you are hit for the next 1D4 Sessions.  If you live you gain a permanent +1 HP.


  1. I like it.

    And this prompted me to get around to writing up an idea I had a while back: What if halflings were hobos...

  2. Is there more to the Hobo Under-Kingdom? I have ideas based on this table that brings together Thief and Elder Scrolls; Oblivion but it would help if I had something else to go on.

    1. There was a single session scenario I ran with with the party sneaking about the Denethix sewers. They did not encounter the hobos, so nope, nothing beyond this treasure list that was to be a random reward generator for helping them.

    2. Damn. My idea was to steal the Queen of Beggars from Thief and use her as a sort of Grey Fox figure that used the "homeless" around the city to gather information. I wanted to sketch out a whole city under the city in maybe ruins that the sewer was built on top of or around.