Skein of Worlds:Random Planet Generation
Sometimes the characters fall through a rabbit hole and you don't know where it leads.
This system is set up to use just about any dice you might have handy. Each table includes columns for 3d6, 2d20, 1d100 and 5dF (1d20 gives results that are too coarse for this). Of course, you can just choose entries off the tables as well.
Quick and Dirty
For a quick and dirty approach to planet generation, we'll assume that the system the planet is in is unimportant, and generally nothing too special. The first step, then, is to decide how balanced the planet it. For each element, roll on the following table. There should be much more detail in the results of each roll.
|3-4||2-5||1-2||-5 - -4||Severe Deficiency||Almost nothing solid. Dry land is composed of lifeless dust.||Completely dry.||Nothing breathable.||Completely frozen.||-5|
|9-12||16-26||27-74||-1 - 1||Balanced||+1|
|17-18||37-40||99-100||4 - 5||Severe Overabundancy||-4|
After checking the results for each element, total the Civ. Score and compare it to the following table.
|-4 or less||8.46%||Life might exist, but it will be tough and either generally vicious or fairly scrawny, but never large.||Civilization generally does not exist in places this hostile.|
|-3 - -2||12.33%||Life likely exists, but is heavily adapted to the harsh environment. Life in such places will be very different from that on most other worlds.||Civilization might just edge by, but will spend all its energy just surviving.|
|-1 - 0||22.88%||Life begins to look more normal. Extremely large creatures are occasionally possible where size would help them overcome the environment.||Civilization could exist. Most will either stay small working with the environment, or grow large working against it. Multiple coterminous civilizations are somewhat unlikely.|
|1 - 2||36.07%||Life exists normally. Larger creatures might exist although larger predators are rare.||Civilization exists normally. At this point, multiple coterminous civilizations becomes likely, meaning trade and war becomes more likely.|
|3 - 4||20.26%||Life thrives. Very large predators can exist with such an abundance of food.||Civilizations will have a lot of extra energy to spend on art, magic or war.|