A city of mysteries, secrets, and dark histories, Ptolus lies forever in the shadow of a towering stone spire reaching impossibly high into the sky, an enigma and reminder of evil long past. In Ptolus, the supernatural is expected and treachery lies around every corner—or is it that the supernatural lies around every corner and treachery is expected? Either way, the city of Ptolus abounds with danger, magic, intrigue, and above all, adventure.

Player characters, having spent their lives in Ptolus – or at least in the same world as this city – certainly know a fair bit about the place. The following section should be required reading for a player creating a character for the Ptolus Campaign. Moreover, DMs should also read the material, as it summarizes much of the general information about the setting. The rest of the book provides more specific detail, but it all builds from the information found in this player’s guide.

DMs should feel free to make this information available to all players in whatever way is easiest.

Permission is granted to photocopy the player’s guide (pages 16 to 37). You can also just show them this portion of the book, but keep in mind that players will want to refer to the information throughout the campaign, as well as read it all at the beginning.

Also, please note that a few details in this section differ from what’s presented in other chapters of this book. Such disparity arises because Chapter 1 provides the information known to city residents or visitors to Ptolus. But common knowledge is not always the truth of the matter.

From My Campaign to Yours

“In my original Ptolus Campaign, the characters started out not as Ptolus natives, but as a group of unconnected individuals waiting in line to enter through the city gates.” – Monte Cook

This chapter is designed to introduce you as a player to the fundamentals of Ptolus, so that you can create and run a character with plenty of knowledge about the world. The city is rich enough in detail that it’s difficult to absorb it all at once, so keep this information handy as a reference while you play in the Ptolus Campaign—and be prepared to discover that the information you learn in these pages is only the very briefest overview.

Brusselt Airmol well-known rogue adventurer in Ptolus“Some place needs to be the worst place in the world. Why not here?” —Brusselt Airmol, well-known rogue adventurer

Ptolus was created to be, first and foremost, a place where characters could have interesting and exciting adventures. It’s designed to accommodate both urban- and dungeon-style adventures. The city’s background provides a foundation for political intrigues, monsterbashing adventures, treasurehunts, and even adventures involving demons, angels, and other outsiders

Chapters in the Player’s Guide to Ptolus