Thug Life - Hard Times in Ados

The Setting

Ados (Free City of the East) is a advanced midieval type town. See midieval occupations at for a reference of occupations and terms. See the Timeline for a summary of notes on what's gone on before in Thug Life!

[Crow Alley]

Welcome to Ados - 'gem' of the east. Center of trade, military power, watcher of the mountains and seat of wizards and warlords. Ados is the primary city of the SW. It sits astride trade routes between the Grey Woods and the mighty outholt of Gurin Tor in Rockholm; other trade has to go around the Bleak Swamp. Protected on all sides and near the darklands, she is a natural haven for magi, priests, and adventurers seeking relics and knowledge of bygone days. For the most part, all these things matter little to youselves; you all grew up hard, in the mean streets around a place called Crow Alley - a maze of markets, business, prostitution, gambling and slums. Life is cheap and plentiful. Once it was a street bringing goods into the center of town from the west gate, now it is cut off from the city by a massive wall to protect the mercantile district on one side and bordered by the slums on its other side. You are 15, and up until now have been doing minor acts of petty theft, lookouts, and performing messenger and mule duties. No single person or gang has monopolized your attention, but you are getting older and bigger, and its time to make a choice before someone chooses you. You are all a single crew - you run together, drink together, tag whores together, and fight together... for now. The gangs want to use your crew in their endeavors; 'business', 'turf' fights, etc.

Crow Alley - Life Aint So Bad

A long 20 block wide/4-5 block wide winding street with 3 markets, several businesses and taverns, and constant conflict. Three minor + one major gangs have a presence - its an old street with a wall at one end - the Dead Gate (as in 'only dead men get through it')... beyond it's guarded and double portcullis blocked archway is the west gate market. The other end leads to Brewers Cross. Its an old main road that once brought trade in from the west gate, but now is simply a pipeline to drugs, prostitution, gambling and crime. It is separated from the city by Beggars Wall on the north side and the Pilum Slums on the south. The wall was erected 400 years ago to create a barrier between the mercantile district and its lesser cousin - and there are said to be many a tunnel twixt the two today... 'commerce' between the two certainly flows despite the massive barrier.

The gangs running Crow Alley are Darding Bloods, Black Eyes, Slashers, and Dice-Men. The Dice-Men are actually the brotherhood from Brewers Cross - having gained a foot hold in the alley in the last 20 years and been able to maintain their presence in the east side of the alley where it meets their home in the Tradesmen Quarter.

Pilum Slums - Life is Hell

Deadly to all outsiders. Of more sinister and dangerous places there are none in Ados. Its a maze of buildings, tents, alleys, refuse, business and squatters mixed together without rhyme or reason. It all butts up against the southern wall of the city; there is said to be many a warren and hole there - and no law enforcement regularly patrol its environs. Cheap labor and folk of the worst disposition and caliber are to be found there... it makes Crow Alley look like a paradise. The gangs of Crow Alley are in constant conflict with the denizens of the slums - open violence and ambushes are prevalent on a daily basis. The gangs are always fighting to keep the territory of 'Crow Alley' and the slums separated.

Many times those on the run from the gangs seek to lose themselves in the slums. While this works, the slum denizens themselves often take care of them.

- Confusing and changing layout; All Urban Survival checks -2.

Brewers Crossing - The Promised Land

A huge public market area where 5 streets meet - each of the 5 sections is run by a different brotherhood in the of town. The minor gangs from other quarters are nothing compared to this business of the tradesmen quarter. A few times gangs from Crow Alley have tried to muscle in on the Tradesmen and Mercantile qaurters and they have been massacred. Its also called 'Coroners Cross' because of the massive gang wars that sometimes erupt in the main market, providing an increase in the coroners business.

Gangs - What You Know

There are 4 main presences in Crow Alley. While each of the gangs have a base, their territories constantly shift. The level of open violence is a delicate balance - any more and businesses would likely revolt. Each gang competes to run operations across the entirety of Crow Alley, but have small pockets where their influence is greater and its more difficult for outsiders to operate without attracting notice (each has a chance to 'disrespect' and attack rival gang members based on how well they run their operation).

City Watch

They will not, under any circumstances, go into Pilum Slum. They regularly patrols only the main streets of Crow Alley - mostly just keeping order on Crow Alley so that business and commerce continues. Many come directly through the Dead Gate, and have no affiliation with the area making easier for them to stay neutral and actually providing more law and order than in the more upscale Brwers Cross area. When the sun goes down, the guards technically are on duty, but difficult to be found - prefering not to endanger themselves unless the trouble finds them directly. In Brewers Cross, the watchmen are typically in the pay of the gangs and openly side with whoever pays the best. They turn tail when large gang warfare starts - which is known to happen a few times a year.


Crow Alley does not have crafters that are allowed to make and sell weapons other than basic knives, daggers at best. Rough spears can be made, staves, sticks, clubs, stones (not lead bullets for slings), and lesser versions of many weapons can be found. Otherwise the characters will have to go through the gangs and/or the black market, costing probably double the normal price. rough bucklers can be made, but fully reinforced shields are not available. Leather jerkins can be made to order but ar expensive enough not to simply be 'in stock'; any real armor is impossible to get outside attacking the watch stations or black market through the gangs.

Character Background

You all meet in a bar and trust each other implicitly... There is rumor of treasure to be found locally; big scores outside are trickling goods and money inside. Wars, commerce, politics and adventure - all swirl outside the city walls, but pool and gather deep in her darkest edge, providing opportunity and chance to make a name for youself. You can't do it alone, but you have to go kill the assholes that got it now... or take it from them; thats about it. You grew up in an endless ocean of humanity in the poor quarters of Ados - you all either are or know fire-starters, bed-wetters and animal-torturers... classic signs of a psycho; no one notices though. Your characters are not important to the community, no one cares if you live or die... you are 'adventurers' - kill people and take their shit. You are from the large free city-state of Ados, its population of least fifty thousand you think. Amidst all that humanity, none of you stand out... it will be up to you to do whatever you want... no expectations.

Character Provisions

  1. REMEMBER - These are "throw away" characters (no effort from GM and players) - the fun is the story, not character development
  2. No connections between characters, other than they grew up in the same neighborhood so you all know each other.
  3. No connections with any institutions, organizations, etc.
  4. No history that implies any broad character knowledge - local only.
  5. All characters are all 14-15 years old.
  6. Poor; 10 silver crowns to start
  7. Core stuff only (no fancy skills/traits), exceptions to this limit will be made for simple, interesting background ideas (worth maybe 1-2 CP of extra).
  8. Starting CP is 20+CHA; you cannot spend more than half on any 1 "thing"
  9. No backgrounds or upbringings or the like; no previous connections, associations, or trade skills/careers of any kind.
  10. Minimum kinetic aptitude of 3; 5 without good reason
  11. No psychic aptitude.
  12. Attributes: All 4; you can reduce 2 of them to "3" and raise 1 to "6".
  13. Human only.
  14. Size is all 10. If you wish for different size, GM can generate, but it may be less.
  15. Appearance is average. If you wish for different appearance, GM can generate, but it may be less. You cannot adjust appearance to gain points in other attributes.
  16. I am also letting people trade 1 starting CP for 3 AP, up to three starting CP.

Characters Involved: Summary

Original Thug Life Character: Rafe Royan, Aaron, Ratnick (the first appearance!), and Kredge. This group disbanded after turning on each other in a horrible scene in CY 9142.

NEXT: Slick - (Larry James) Face-man, Sleeves - Incurable klepto and master of the sleight of hand (Kelly Berger), Jimmy the Cod (Troy), "Tubs"/Patrick - (Kelly Berger; DEAD!!!) Drunken outcast priest of Ezrilus, Twitch (Kelly Royal), ___ - (Mario Kundzins) Ex-guardsman; thug, Sleepy - (William Altman) = Slow but steady

NEXT: Ratnik (pt 2!),

PLANNED: 2011 > Butch Bullock (never played)