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omnipus
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Central Poland resources

Tue 08 Jun 2021, 00:27

Hi all -- since not long after the alpha was released, I've been running a campaign using the rules. Though the characters in my group have been very different from the classic T2K US Army leave-behinds, I have been working from close to the traditional start point: characters stranded on the East side of the Warta, near Łódź.

Since then, the campaign as revolved around local struggles and drama in the vicinity of Łódź, and mostly the city of Bełchatów (which is strategically important for a number of reasons). It is a fun area/moment to adventure in, as almost anything goes. There are stragglers, refugees, Soviet troops, US troops, deserters, and marauders. There is simmering resentment in the local populace. There is the escalating question of "what now" and opinions on the war are up down and in-between.

I've had to learn quite a lot to present a semi-decent picture of this part of the world I have never experienced. I've learned a fair bit of Polish history and culture. I've gradually created a lot of forces and currents that are moving and swirling around the players, and providing hooks for anything from a single mission to a months-long campaign in the area. From here, the players can move on to Warsaw, or Krakow, or all points west... but for now, it's where they are. It seems T2K has traditionally lacked a lot of resources for depicting this immediate area and what to do if you hang around there or get stuck there at all! So I've been revising everything that I've come up with, lessons learned, and getting it all organized for my own sake, but...

Would people be interested in this, as a formal supplement, if I were to sink a bunch of additional effort into it? I believe I should be able to publish it as part of the Free League Workshop, if nothing else (although I haven't seen anything specific to T2K on there yet). I'd anticipate it being somewhere between a "survivor's guide to Belchatow" and something more like the classic 1st edition adventures. Certainly a bit less dense than those in terms of plot and material, but more than enough to feed a campaign from!
 
baldrick0712
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Re: Central Poland resources

Tue 08 Jun 2021, 06:53

Would people be interested in this, as a formal supplement, if I were to sink a bunch of additional effort into it?
I would be interested, yes. Would it follow the official narrative as regards to the push by the "Red Devils" on Łódź? Did they actually make it there before they were pushed back?

Some nice drone footage of Bełchatów... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qBlgnqRZuY
 
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omnipus
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Re: Central Poland resources

Tue 08 Jun 2021, 21:18

Oh, nice, I actually hadn't come across that. Gives a very good feel for a lot of important aspects: how the com-bloc apartment towers dominate the area, how you can see the power plant even from 20km away, etc.

One difficult issue is modernization. As you can see in that video, there is and has been a LOT of development there since the mid-90s. Most of those single-family homes didn't exist. Some of the major roadways didn't. About half of the enormous power plant didn't. I'm hoping to get reliable primary sources on this sort of stuff, but it's difficult outside of period-correct maps.

What did exist, of course, was all those residential towers, and they would have been core to the fighting and are very core to the political situation I've established. Much of the work I'm doing is going into how the spaces are re-utilized. All of those green areas and city parks would be serving new purpose now as sustenance farming and gardens. Water sources are needed (even without NBC threats, the river is considered polluted). And so on.

The more I work on this the happier I get with how much story and drama you can eek out of just one small city.

As for the timeline, yes, I'm trying to be compliant with the official canon. My take on that is that US forces gained a foothold in Łódź, and the 1st Panzer outflanked it, before both were forced back. Bełchatów was captured outright (then mostly bypassed) -- but all that means is that there was fighting there both on the way in and then on the way back out! Some of what I've done is based off of 1st edition canon, but most of that still falls into unearthed area as far as 4th Ed. goes so far, so it shouldn't (AFAIK) contradict anything. I'd be happy to work with FL on this, of course, but that's out of my hands.
 
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omnipus
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Re: Central Poland resources

Thu 10 Jun 2021, 01:36

Been working on a map. Trying to hit the right balance of usable and period-accurate, OSR style. A found document that players can have.

Image
 
Jeremysbrain
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Re: Central Poland resources

Thu 10 Jun 2021, 05:29

I think the best resource I ever bought for T2K was a Berlitz travel guide on Poland in 94. But even that doesn't get super focused. So I would be interested in a really focused guides to specific cities or regions, even if only to mine ideas from them.
 
Jeremysbrain
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Re: Central Poland resources

Thu 10 Jun 2021, 05:31

Oh, in your game is the PGE power station still intact or destroyed? I had been thinking there are so many coal power plants in Poland that at least a couple of them would probably have survived and become targets for contested forces.
 
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omnipus
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Re: Central Poland resources

Thu 10 Jun 2021, 20:42

It is "intact," but damaged by airstrikes and contaminated by persistent chemical agents. Decontaminating it, rebuilding the destroyed high tension lines, and other infrastructure rebuilding and security tasks are a few of the significant campaign hooks.
 
Mahatatain
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Re: Central Poland resources

Wed 30 Jun 2021, 15:36

Been working on a map. Trying to hit the right balance of usable and period-accurate, OSR style. A found document that players can have.

Image
The map looks very good (though it's corrupting in this thread it opens in a new tab). Are you continuing to modify/update it? Do you have an updated version that you are going to put on the Free League Workshop?

Also how are you creating this map?
 
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omnipus
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Re: Central Poland resources

Thu 01 Jul 2021, 01:13

Yeah, I gave up on posting it here after the third time trying three different link/attachment techniques.

It has been updated a couple times since then (some substantial additions). It is mostly intended to be a "found document" that wouldn't necessarily track positions or anything like that. Of course, do with it whatever you like or let your players do so! I realize now I should probably add a scale. You could use it for a 1km hexcrawl if you really wanted to, although the addition of something like "districts" would be needed to make that really worthwhile.

Once the Workshop terms have been updated I imagine I will get back to this project. I have some specific locations mapped and written up (a bar, a floor of one of the bloki apartment towers...) I also have a fair amount of written material put together (in a first/second draft format) on the ground situation throughout Piotrkow Tribunalski vovoideship, which is the meat of the project itself when coupled with a few big-picture scenario happenings and situations that players can get involved in.

The map itself was generated from OpenStreetMap layers, edited by hand to be as historically accurate as I could make them with my available sources, with locations identified manually. And various visual effects and hand-written or drawn notes added. A day or two of vector and Photoshop work probably to this point.
 
sgt
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Re: Central Poland resources

Sun 11 Jul 2021, 21:22

Yes, very interested!

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