Welcome to Madripoor
This section describes the basic terrain types on the island. Included are NPCs typical of the people who live in those areas and Chase Hazards you may want to implement. You can pick and choose which hazards to use when a chase ensues in the particular terrain. Also mentioned are the common types of chases that can occur in the terrain.
Sometime back in its dim geological past, Madripoor was at least twice as large as it is now. Like most islands in Indonesia, it is of volcanic origin. The young island was covered with airborne seeds and was an ideal resting spot for migratory birds until its surface evolved into a deep layer of fertile topsoil.
Then the southern half of the island sunk back into the sea. The magnificent cliffs that boaters gaze at in rapt admiration and spend countless rolls of film photographing are a direct result of this ancient geological event. In addition to being a spectacular sight, these cliffs have helped save the island from sustaining major damage from typhoons. The storms usually strike from the southeast and much of their fury is spent battering the durable rock, sparing the cities and farms the full force of the Indonesian storms.
The cliff is not extremely difficult to climb. It is anywhere from 100 to 175 feet high and its jagged edge has some excellent hand holds for bare rock climbing. Anyone using mountaineering equipment will have an easier and faster time of it, though. Of course, during a storm or hurricane you should apply negative modifiers as you see fit.
The cliffs mark the highest point of Madripoor’s Cahyadi Mountains. The roads through the mountains are considered treacherous with many hairpin curves. At the time of their construction it was easier to build more road than to try to carve a pathway out of the rock. The view along the roads is scenic, but only for passengers. Drivers usually white-knuckle the trip at very sedate speeds, eyes glued to the road to watch for the next curve.
Despite the driving problems (or maybe because of them) a number of wealthy Madripoorans and foreigners have gone to much expense and trouble to have luxurious homes built on (and sometimes into) the mountainside. Generally, the higher on the mountain the greater the cost of a house or estate.
During the summer, the mountains are a popular tourist spot. The offshore breezes serve to cool off the mountains on this otherwise very hot island.
NPCs in the Mountains
Lady Aleida Van Keuren
Native Language: English
4th-level civilian (NPC); CR 1. SZ M; v/wp 10/13; Init +2 (+2 class); Spd 30 ft.; Def 12 (+2 class); Atk: punch/kick +1 (1d3-1); Face 1 square; Reach 1 square; SA None; SQ; SV Fort +3, Ref +1, Wil +5; Str 8, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 13, Wis 16, Cha 20; Skills: Appraise +8, Cultures +10, Diplomacy +12, Gather Information +12, Sense Motive +10. Feats: The Look, Silver Tongue. Gear: Fashionable and expensive items. Gadgets & Vehicles: Many vehicles including a yacht.
Background: In the island’s social circles, the one question never asked on the island of Madripoor is the age of Lady Aleida. People stopped asking and just kept marveling years ago. They know she has lived on the island for more than 20 years, staying on after her husband died ten years ago.
Lord Van Keuren was owner of a shipping company that handled most of the tobacco and coffee exported from the island. He was well-loved by his workers and the government since he always made certain that he gave back as much to Madripoor as he got from it. He was one of the first men to hire islanders for key positions in a company. Soon Madripoorans manned virtually his entire company on the island. He built a house on the mountains at the top of the cliffs and relocated here with his attractive, adoring wife Aleida.
Lord Van Keuren died tragically and unexpectedly. He and her ladyship were out sailing when a fire started belowdecks. His lordship was so concerned with the fire that he failed to see the coral reef and the ship crashed. His lordship’s clothes caught fire and he and his wife went overboard for two days and two nights. Lady Aleida miraculously survived the ordeal. His Lordship did not.
When help arrived they discovered that his lordship had died from his burns shortly after going overboard. Still the widow refused to accept her loss. She spent some time in the hospital until she was determined to be well adjusted, but she was never quite the same again.
While most people would have gone into seclusion, her ladyship went to the other extreme. She became a social animal…a social wildcat to be exact. She started having parties that would last for days and romances that lasted only slightly longer. She would start to see a man, get bored with him very quickly, and move on so rapidly that polite circles began to talk.
Always a very handsome woman, her ladyship went on an extended vacation and came back looking ten to fifteen years younger. Her plastic surgery scars are barely noticeable. Now she exercises and constantly diets and visits a Swiss clinic once a year for further fitness training.
She is a person living in the fast lane. She spends her days at the estate or on her 150′ cruiser docked at the resort harbor.
Reactions: Any good-looking male PC will certainly get here ladyship’s attention. On the other hand, any young, attractive female will only earn her disdain.
If her ladyship likes a young man, he can become something akin to a charm on her bracelet. She will exhibit him at all her parties and any parties she attends and introduce him around as “a dear, dear boy who’s helping me through a tough time.”
She knows everyone who lives on The Cliff, as the neighborhood of mansions and millionaires is called, and is a favorite party guest. Because of this, she can be very useful in getting a PC invited to an otherwise exclusive party.
Nationality: United States
Native Language: English
10th-level snoop (NPC); CR 10. SZ M; v/wp 45/10; Init +7 (+6 class, +Dex); Spd 30 ft.; Def 19 (+8 class, +1 Dex); Atk: punch/kick +6 (1d3+1); Face 1 square; Reach 1 square; SA None; SQ Astute, flawless search, intuition 1/session, jury-rig +5, back door x2, intelligence analysis, comb the streets, master cracker 1/session; SV Fort +3, Ref +6, Wil +8; Str 13, Dex 12, Con 10, Int 16, Wis 16, Cha 14; Skills: Appraise +16, Bureaucracy +13, Computers +18, Concentration +15, Cryptography +16, Diplomacy +14, Electronics +15, Gather Information +15, Read Lips +15, Search +13, Sense Motive +15, Surveillance +15. Feats: Mark, Mathematical Genius, Advanced Skill Mastery (Mathematical Genius), False Start. Gear: Any (70 BP). Gadgets & Vehicles: Any (10 GP).
Background: All characters will know who Martin Lebecque is. It was in all the newspapers how he ran a confidence game so shrewd that he can’t be arrested for it.
What it boiled down to was offering to sell secrets to the Chinese while acting as a consultant with an American aerospace company. He got a couple of million dollars for information that never materialized. When the FBI went to pick him up, they couldn’t find the plans. The Chinese didn’t want to become implicated in such a well-publicized case, so they couldn’t retrieve their money. Lebecque was let free because of the lack of evidence against him.
He’s had an exceptionally luxurious lifestyle since then.
He took a big risk which has paid off and since then has set up a network of technology thieves who gather information, plans and specifications for him which he sells to the highest bidder. He is always very careful to keep several steps removed from the deal and never to culminate one on Madripoor.
On the island there is talk of his shady past, but he is very careful not to break the law or embarrass the government. All deals are signed, sealed and delivered in some other spot. As he puts it: “A smart animal doesn’t mess where he eats.”
Reaction: Lebecque will at first be suspicious of anyone he suspects is an agent for any country or organization. He surrounds his house with bodyguards and guard dogs. However, he can be reasoned with… especially if it ultimately means a profit.
Lebecque is a prime source of information about the island, the surrounding island nations and Indochina. He knows about almost every drug deal, gun sale and planned revolution. He is somehow connected with most of them, anyway. He is also careful about leaving the island. He is not wanted by any country, but he knows that several countries would love to “detain” him for a few days to ask a few questions. If you have some point of information you’d like the PCs to have, you can use Lebecque.
Chases in the Mountains
Many roads now cut through the mountains allowing access to the many estates. Travel on foot or by vehicle is easily done. Any water is in fast moving streams and is too shallow and narrow to travel on with any boat.
Some general game rules that are in effect during chases in the mountains follow:
Terrain type: Tight only
Common chase types: Ground & foot
Initial starting speeds: ¼ the fastest vehicle/person
Maneuver modifiers: Driver of the vehicle with the higher handling receives a +1 speed bonus to maneuver checks
Obstacle chance: 1 on a d4
Obstacle DC: 24
- Hairpin Thrills: The vehicles must negotiate past some hairpin turns in the road.
- Rocky Road: Rocks and boulders have fallen on the road and all but block passage.
- Too Big for Its Bridges: The bridge that used to span this gap is out, but you can jump it, maybe.
- Fancy Meeting You Here: Up ahead of you is a tourist bus or car taking up most of the road and you must get around it.