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The 9 Sentence Settlement

Sunday, December 30th, 2018

I was thinking yesterday about expanding the New 7 Sentence NPC to cover other sorts of game information.  I became a fan of the 7 Sentence NPC when I read it in Dragon magazine back in 1992 as it is quick to produce and gives me as a GM lots of the information I need to play an NPC quickly.  It fits well with producing material for a setting in an agile way.

I’m working on a set of different short description formats for locations.  The first one I’m reasonably happy with is the 9 Sentence Settlement.  This should cover anywhere from a hamlet to a city. It can be used to break down parts of a settlement by reusing it for areas in a city.  I’m also looking at similar formats for regions, countries, buildings etc.

  • Heading
  • Line 1 Introduction
  • Line 2 First Impressions
  • Line 3 People
  • Line 4 Culture
  • Line 5 Getting There
  • Line 6 Getting Around
  • Line 7 Facilities, work and other features
  • Line 8 History
  • Line 9 Secrets


  • Name
  • Title

Line 1 Introduction:

  • Alternate name(s)
  • Type of place (eg city, town, village, hamlet, orbital station, arcology, metropolis)
  • Apparent size (eg small, medium, large)
  • Location

Line 2 First Impressions:

  • Apparent state (clean, run down, ruined)
  • Sensory
  • Skyline
  • Architecture

Line 3 People:

  • Numbers
  • Demographics
  • Religion

Line 4 Culture:

  • Food
  • Art
  • Clothing,
  • Language
  • Values

Line 5 Getting There:

  • Road
  • Rail
  • Airports
  • Docks
  • Spaceports

Line 6 Getting Around:

  • Buses
  • Trains
  • Trams
  • Taxi
  • Underground
  • Cars
  • Cycling
  • Walking
  • Riding

Line 7 Facilities, work and other features:

  • Manufacturing
  • Public Sector
  • Commerce
  • Health Care
  • Libraries

Line 8 History:

  • When founded
  • Major event(s)

Line 9 Secrets:

  • Crime
  • Scandals waiting to happen
  • Corruption
  • Secrets places

Example: Archologia Napoli

The third largest archology in Italy Archologia Napoli (Naples Archology) is a rundown archology on the coast.  Towering over old Napoli the archaeology appears from a distance to be a shining dome floating on the sea but as you get closer a traveller can see a spiderweb of hairline cracks in the dome.   A centre or art with the most stars from the Michelin Guide of any Italian city while Pizzafest celebrates the city as the home of the pizza.  Well connected with a class 2 spaceport, southern Italy’s largest airport, autostrade and national railways.  Archologia Napoli also has extensive public transport including an underground system while mopeds and small cars are common for personal transport.  Around a third of all jobs are in the public services, with some manufacturing and commerce.  Founded in 2032 the archology was shaken by the 2054 earthquake which revealed shortcuts had been taken during the construction of the archology’s foundations, the resulting political scandal brought down the local government.  Despite ongoing attempts to stamp it out the Camrorra still has a strong presence in the Arcology.

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