Wednesday, 22 February 2023

Hex Crawl 23 # 53: Autumn Weather Report - Dusty With A Chance of Haboob

 One hex south, three southwest of Alakran.


This barren stretch is as good a place as any to tell of the terrible autumns of the desert.

Summer leaves the land and air parched. With autumn's cooling in the months before the rains begin, a movement is in the air. From the south, winds blow, terrible winds.

Using the weather system introduced in hex #35, temperatures in this season, the months of Tisheret, Samnu and Kislimu, average 25C/80F by day and 15C/60F by night. The weather dice modify temperature, clouds and rain as in late spring. But as for winds,  a 1 does not cancel a 3 during this time, and two 3's and a 6 count as three 3's. Within 10 miles of sandy desert, a 3-3-3 augurs in the terrible haboob storm, that unbroken, turbulent, mountain-high cloud of dust familiar from memes. A 3-3-6 in any configuration unleashes a more normal sandstorm.

5th edition sandstorms in the DMG are milquetoast affairs that impose disadvantage on skill rolls dependent on sight. That is the case for the dust-laden winds that spring up with only two 3's, and visibility is reduced to 50 feet. The true sandstorm of 3-3-6 rolls reduces visibility to 20 feet, and if attempting to move through the sandstorm, or just exist in it while standing or not fully covered, a character must make a CON save or take 1 level of exhaustion per hour (1hp damage/level in old school systems). Haboobs may, for dramatic purposes, be treated as the "lovely day" storm from Mad Max: Fury Road, with all these effects every half-hour plus a 10% chance per hour of being hit by a lightning bolt, DEX save or 3d6 lightning damage, and a 20% of being swept up by a strong wind as with the levitate spell. All these storms usually last 1-6 hours in any one location.

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