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OM2 is an expanded and updated version of the original Orbis Mundi, covering the reality of Medieval European Life for Role Players.
OM2 is an expanded and updated version of the original Orbis Mundi, covering the reality of Medieval European Life for Role Players.
471 backers pledged AU$ 17,777 to help bring this project to life.

Second Stretch Goal Passed!

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Overnight the second Stretch Goal, a Medieval Manor, was passed ... so now those Backers who have chosen a Reward Level that includes these will get not only a Medieval Village but the Manor to go with it!

At just over $2200 we're well on the way to reaching the third Stretch Goal, a Medieval Castle ... and we're still on Day 2!

What you won't find in a Medieval Village

Virtually all Fantasy RPGs have no idea what real Medieval Villages were like and assume they were like small Villages in modern times - but nothing could be further from the truth.

They routinely have two things present that simply didn't exist in Vilages in medieval times ... a General Store and an Inn or Tavern.

General Store. These simply didn't exist at all -- not anywhere. They don't appear until the 18th century. The closest thing to them are Ship's Chandlers which are just starting to appear in some of the bigger Port Towns (such as London or the Hansa Towns) by the mid to late 14th century.

In a Village there might be specialist craftsmen - usually a Carpenter and a Blacksmith, though they might not work at their trade full time - and you would go to their place of business and order items they routinely produce. The chance they would have anything other than a limited stock of raw materials in stock, however, is minimal - and the sort of gear that the typical adventuring party of PCs would want is close to nil (and they may not even be able to make it in any time frame of use to the PCs, if they can make it at all).

For general items, food and the like, you can go around to the individual households and, depending on the time of year, stocks may be available for sale ... and at prices somewhat cheaper than in the nearest Town. Even so, the best time to source produce and craft goods will be at the Churchyard on a Sunday when the locals will almost universally run an impromptu, informal, Market.

For anything else, well, you'll have to do what the locals do ... head off to the nearest Town and it's Craft shops and/or weekly Market.

Taverns or Inns. Yes, there's a difference. Taverns served food and drink, but were legally prohibited from renting rooms while Inns could rent rooms but were often prohibited from serving meals to non-guests. 

Taverns were found only in Towns. Inns were found in Towns and along major roads, generally spaced so that travellers would find them about a day's journey apart.

Neither were found in Villages. Ever. At least, not until after the 14th century ... usually well after,

On the other hand, what you did find, quite commonly (even in Towns, where they outnumbered Taverns and Inns combined) was an Alehouse or Alehouses.

Alehouse. Ale was not normally brewed on a commercial basis (even Taverns and Inns tended to brew their own) and families, usually the wives, brewed their own ... and many of them were happy to sell their excess.

All that was required were some mugs or cups and a bench, often outside, on which the customers could sit. They were not legally allowed to sell food ... but, in a Village, some informal arrangement could usually be made.

So, two enduring tropes of most RPGs bite the dust - the heroic adventuring party can't retire from the Dungeon to the local Village and replenish or repair their weapons, armour, arrows or bolts or buy anything much other than food and the sorts of goods the locals might have on hand more for their own use. Likewise, an evening in the Village Inn after a hard day's delving or travelling ... can't happen (though local families are usually happy enough to rent out space in their Barn or Storerooms to travellers, and feed them, for a mix of news and other stories and pay).

Elrico, Jonas Schiött, and 1 more person like this update.

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