RPG Blog Carnival: d12 Superstitions

I thought I’d contribute to this month’s RPG Blog Carnival on Superstitions (hosted this month by Of Dice and Dragons). with twelve example superstitions. Select one or determine randomly to give an NPC of your choice a little more colour! A superstition is probably not a personally held belief but a cultural one, so generating a superstition for an NPC is doing a lot more than simply adding a point of interest to that one NPC. It’s also defining a larger point of interest—a belief commonly held by many members of their race, nationality, or cultural group.

Twelve superstitions not enough? I’m sure there are other similar lists out there (maybe as part of the Blog Carnival) which you can compile together for an even bigger pool of superstition ideas. Or if you’ve got some of your own, please leave a comment so that other readers can benefit from your ideas!

Superstitions (d12)

  1. Never cross flowing water twice in one day.
  2. Real gold attracts fairies, and is best not worn.
  3. Three left turns leads to misfortune.
  4. Inverting a holy symbol draws the devil’s eyes. 
  5. It is wise to accept a gypsy’s hospitality, or you may be be plagued with ills.
  6. Every tree has its brother somewhere in the same forest. What you say while touching the bark of one may be heard by a creature touching its twin.
  7. At every camp site, pour a libation and place a copper coin under a rock on the site, and you will buy the goodwill of the local spirits overnight. In the morning, leave the coin where it was placed or risk their wrath. 
  8. To take a saint’s name in vain is to invite five days of misfortune. 
  9. If you say your name three times in three minutes, you draw the attention of the fey and will be replaced by a changeling while you sleep.
  10. Exploiting the vulnerable invites personal disaster.
  11. A phial of fresh spring water and silver powder worn around the neck repels lycanthropes and vampires alike. 
  12. The first leaf to fall naturally from a tree in autumn carries good fortune.