Truffle (fungus)
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Basic Information

A Truffle is a type of fungus which grows underground, generally feeding on the roots of trees. As a truffle matures and its spores ripen, it emits a powerful smell which attracts animals that dig it up in order to eat it, scattering the spores far and wide in the process.

Some varieties of truffles are considered a great delicacy by humans and fetch very high prices - one white truffle from near Pisa in Italy which weighted 1.5 kilograms was sold to a casino owner from Macao for US$330,000.

In general, truffle is used as a spice, for seasoning and flavouring foods, although some historical recipies use them so freely that they are treated like just another mushroom.

Truffles are usually found with the help of trained pigs ("truffle hogs") or dogs - often in the wild, although truffle faming has occasionally been managed with some success.



Game and Story Use

  • The PCs find a very large truffle in a bandit lair. Will they eat it or use it as a spellcasting ingredient - or try to auction it off? And what if the original owner (likely a powerful noble or merchant prince) learns about it and wants it back?
  • Someone has kidnapped the price-winning truffle hog of a local farmer, and he asks them for help. Will they be able to find it and return it unharmed? Especially if it runs off during a fight with the kidnappers - into the direction of the local slum, where the locals know a large piece of pork when they see it?
  • Bear in mind that in some truffle growing areas, they were historically regarded as quite unremarkable and part of standard woodland forage - a merchant from a truffle loving area could potentially make quite a killing by establishing a trade route. Especially if the locals would quite happily trade their truffles for some other seasoning which might well be quite mundane elsewhere…
  • Just being sent off to buy truffles could lead to plenty of adventures messing about in the wildwood.
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