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  • Writer's pictureGeorge Patterson

True Ruins Procedure

The True Ruins Procedure creates a “Deck of Many Things” type experience by generating RANDOM ruins, with RANDOM denizens and RANDOM treasure, that will sometimes cause Characters to Experience the Sublime and be overcome with RANDOM Passions– causing the Characters’ mouths to spew interpolated poetry of Romantic Era writers (William Wordsworth, Emily Dickenson, Percy Shelley, Lord Byron, and so forth) before receiving RANDOM benefits or curses.


Suitable for vanilla OSR-ish games, but can be adapted to a lot of genres, the procedure is a bit more silly and gonzo than the freshman english class source material would indicate.


This procedure is inspired by Christopher Woodward’s In Ruins and Romantic era obsessions with ruins generally. The concept of the Sublime and the Passions they arouse is based on Edmund Burke’s A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful, the prose of which is liberally interpolated in this supplement. The illustrations are digital collages of romantic era artworks, mixed with digital painting and help from THE GREAT AI OVERLORDS. The skeuomorphic book is based on 19th century tourist albums designed for visiting ruins while on The Grand Tour.



Thank you to The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, The Smithsonian, Yale Center for British Art, and the Rijksmuseum for the images.

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