It is well known by now that garbage and human waste not only smell bad, but are also breeding grounds for diseases. Since major outbreaks of disease would bring commerce and industry in a city to a standstill, most governments decide to invest in at least a basic sewage system. A series of pipes connect individual houses to the horizontal mains (which are usually big enough to allow access for human-sized creatures, though some only allow access for beings the size of halflings… or goblins), which transport the waste to the closest river, or to special water treatment basins in the more progressive cities. Cities that often experience heavy rainfalls will also have storm sewers, large pipes that transport the runoff from precipitation to prevent flooding in the city.

As sewers were usually introduced to cities as an afterthought instead of planned in from the start, they are usually a complex maze of tunnels and access pipes that frequently connect to cellars, old catacombs, and various tunnels built by earlier denizens of the undercities. As a result, the sewers and the tunnels that link to them are all too often a haven for rats, criminals, undead (especially ghouls) and worse. The sewer workers usually come to an arrangement with some or all of the other sapient denizens of the depths, as they are rarely either trained or paid for actively combating them.

Adventure Ideas

Designer's Notes & Resources


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Urbis - A World of Cities © Jürgen Hubert. All material on this site excepting forum posts is owned by him.