Desert: Random Encounter Table

roll-table

#1

Hail, adventurers! Here is a random encounter table for the desert regions of your game!

How to Use This Table:

  • These are creatures your players encounter. They are not necessarily combat encounters. If your party encounters orcs, perhaps they are feasting on some buffalo they just took down and invite the party for a meal. If you roll some Giant Camel Spiders, they could be resting among the rocks… the players don’t have to engage, unless they want the twinkling treasure barely visible underneath the things.
  • Flavor the things you roll to the desert theme. The orcs have dry, leathery skin. The gnolls are anubis-like dogmen. The Roper is a rocky spike poking out of the sand. The cultists are cloaked and resemble dervish. A giant is tall and lithe, not the fat oafs we’re used to seeing.
  • Accept that not everything the PCs encounter will be their level. It is up to them to engage or avoid.
  • Let the random encounters build your side plots. Why did your party encounter 17 orcs? What are the orcs doing in the desert? Who is their leader? How are they interacting with the settlements you’ve placed? Invent!
  • Don’t feel bound by the suggested # appearing. If you roll bandits and want it to be an entire raiding party heading for the nearby oasis market, do it! Random Encounter Tables are supposed to jog your imagination.

Random Encounter Table

  1. 3d6 Orcs
  2. 5d4 Gnolls
  3. d12 Goblins
  4. 2d6 Bandits
  5. 3d6 Barbarians (d4: Human, Elf, Dwarf, Gnome)
  6. 3d8 Hobgoblins
  7. 2d6 Centaur
  8. 2d8 Satyr
  9. d6 Ogres
  10. d4+1 Giant Scorpions
  11. d8+2 Giant Vipers
  12. d12 Giant Camel Spiders
  13. 2d4 Giant Vultures
  14. d6 Giant Predatory Birds
  15. 2d4 Giant Lizards
  16. 3d6 Giant Frogs
  17. d4 Giant Fire Beetles
  18. d4 Giant Jackrabbits
  19. d6 Giant Hyenas
  20. d4 Giant Sand Cats
  21. d8 Giant Boars
  22. 4d4 Stirges
  23. 3d4 Lions
  24. d6 Camels
  25. 2d12+3 Coyotes
  26. 2d8+2 Thri-Kreen
  27. d4 Harpies
  28. d10+2 Giant Black Scarabs
  29. d2 Dust Devil
  30. 3d6+6 Snakefolk
  31. 2d20 Zombies
  32. 3d12 Skeletons
  33. d4 Wights
  34. 1 Ghost
  35. d6 Will-o-Wisps
  36. 1 Hag
  37. 1 Oni
  38. 2d6 Cultists
  39. NPC adventuring party
  40. d6 Elves
  41. d6 Dwarves
  42. 2d6 Halflings
  43. 3d12 Antfolk
  44. d6 Elephantfolk
  45. d6 druids
  46. 1 paladin
  47. d6+4 Death Dogs
  48. d8 Giant 2-headed Dogs
  49. 2d12 Trolls
  50. d4 Ettin
  51. d4 Half-Ogres
  52. 1 Giant
  53. 1 Cyclops
  54. 1 Bigfoot
  55. d4 Werejackals (Even roll: Human form, Odd Roll: beast form)
  56. d4 Weretigers (Even roll: Human form, Odd roll: beast form)
  57. d6 Wereboars (Even roll: Human form, Odd roll: beast form)
  58. d12 Hammerhand sandsharks
  59. 1 Fire Elemental
  60. 1 Air Elemental
  61. 1 Earth Elemental
  62. d4 Obsidian Constructs
  63. d4 Couatl
  64. 1 Djinn
  65. 1 Gibbering Mouther
  66. d2 Water Weird
  67. d8 Rock Weird
  68. d4 Acidic Slimes/Puddings
  69. Caravan of Traders
  70. Caravan of Gypsies
  71. Caravan of Nobles
  72. Caravan of Pilgrims
  73. Caravan of Refugees
  74. d4 Fire Drakes
  75. d4 Basilisks
  76. d6+2 Phase Spiders
  77. 3d4 Birdfolk
  78. d6+3 Displacer Beasts
  79. 1 Wyvern
  80. 1 Chimera
  81. 1 Bone Devil
  82. 1 Griffon
  83. 1 Manticore
  84. 2d12 Roper
  85. d4 treants
  86. 1 Manscorpion
  87. d6 Velociraptors
  88. 2d8 Ankylosaurus
  89. 2d6 Triceratops
  90. d4 Brontosaurus
  91. d6 Stegosaurus
  92. d4 Pterodactyl
  93. 2d6 Drow
  94. d4 Mimics
  95. 8d12 Giant Floating Spores
  96. 5d4 Duergar
  97. 3d4 Imps
  98. 1 Purple Wurm
  99. 1 Hydra
  100. 1 Dragon

Random Encounter Location Table

  1. At an oasis
  2. At a waterhole
  3. Atop the saltflats
  4. On the floor of a canyon
  5. In an underground cave
  6. The blistering sands
  7. An abandoned stone hovel
  8. A ravine full of giant spiked cacti
  9. A half buried ruin
  10. Between 6 perfectly cylindrical stone pillars
  11. An abandoned camp with several tents
  12. Along the bone-dry skeleton of a river
  13. In the shade of a tooth-shaped stone formation
  14. At a monument to a forgotten god
  15. At the base of a crumbling pyramid
  16. A rocky cliffside
  17. In quicksand
  18. On the road
  19. Surrounded by boulders
  20. In a long ruined tower or fort

Enjoy!