This fantasy role-playing game scenario is the lair of the Wyrm of Etiniga, the draconic creature from the adventure: The Suitor’s Challenge. I also used a shorter, modified version of this dungeon for the medieval age dungeon in season 2 of Class of 198x. This map could also serve as basically any dragonlike creature’s lair in your home game.
As the person running the game, select a number and type of creatures for the below encounters according to what seems appropriate to the characters attempting to delve the dungeon. The scenario probably entails navigating three to five encounters, so a gamut of medium and hard encounters is probably appropriate, based on Player Character number and level (consult your Monster Manual and Dungeon Master’s Guide or equivalent books for more guidelines on this topic). My advice: make it hard, but not impossible. Don’t be afraid to throw in a couple of reinforcements (on either side) when appropriate, but overall try to present a difficult but achievable scenario.
Situated in a large natural cavern hidden in the ravine past the hills north of Vistola, the lair of the cursed Wyrm of Etiniga’s maw stands open. A cavern in the side of a ravine, twenty feet wide and receding into the yawning darkness of a larger chamber ahead. Close examination of the gravely ground reveals clawed footprints of a variety of sizes, among dry old bloodstains.
1) Gruesome Display
A pile of broken animals, people, and weapons have been arranged into a sort of horrid meat-drying scaffolding in this chamber. The corpses are in varying stages of decay and bear jagged bite marks on whatever is left of them. Broad natural stone passages lead to the left and to the right.
Loud noises in this chamber will alert the kobolds and lizardfolk to the right in areas 3 and 4.
This passage is bisected by a twenty foot deep crack in the stone, at the base of which a shallow underground stream flows. The walls bear black moss and faintly glowing white lichen.
Climbing up or down is a difficult task (DC 20) due to the moisture and the slick growths on the walls.
The warband of lizardfolk who have come to the caves to worship the Wyrm and raid the countryside live in this cavern, eating from the corpses in area 1 and otherwise being served by the kobolds. Among them is a war shaman who will aid them with magic against intruders. The lizardfolk warband spends its time eating, resting, and raiding the surrounding countryside, dragging back both shepard and sheep upon which to feast.
They will lead the attack against intruders, backed up by the kobolds and the shaman as their leader.
Numerous kobolds already lived in nearby caves when the Wyrm arrived, and have come here to join in the worship and feasting. They mainly live in this cavern, and perform most of their domestic tasks here from cooking over small firepits to coppersmithing spear heads and knives.
They will join the lizardfolk in defense of the caverns, taking advantage of the narrow passages that connect areas 4, 5 and 7 to flank and sneak up on intruders. Medium sized creatures must squeeze through the narrow passages at half speed, and are at disadvantage to attacking foes and defending themselves.
The kobolds and lizardfolk have built a shrine here to the Wyrm: a stone block with a silver-and-gold gilded idol of the serpentine Wyrm with eyes of garnet. Piled up at the base of the altar is the wealth of the tribe, including several boxes of sandalwood incense, one hundred gold coins, twice as many pieces of silver coin, and a pot of healing balm which will heal 2d4+3 hit points when applied to wounds.
The shaman will make their last stand here against intruders and will fight to the death to protect the shrine.
The idol itself is is worth 200 gold, but it is also warded with a curse, and the first non-lizardfolk to touch it will take 3d8 points of acid damage, unless they make a Constitution save for half damage.
6) Fungi and Slime
Putrid-smelling green slime drips from the ceiling of this shallow bowl of a cavern. Below, grayish gunk stirs slightly among shards of bone and dark smelly spoor.
Creatures entering the cavern will be dripped upon by the green slime on the ceiling, and attacked by the gray ooze on the ground. Unless they succeed on stealth checks, those who pass by this cavern are likely to be pursued by at least one gray ooze.
For lower level parties, consider using Blue Oozes instead of gray oozes.
This large cavern is split by a 30 foot deep crack in the stone ground.
The chasm is difficult to climb up and down, but the Wyrm can arch across it without difficulty.
Loud noises in this cavern will attract the ire of the Wyrm.
The Wyrm of Etrigia lies here, a gleaming shiny black mass of coils and claws, making gruesome noises.
If using the True Love plot twist version of this adventure, medium difficulty (DC 15) Sense Motive skill checks will reveal the beast appears to be in pain, and is writhing and scratching at itself, biting its tail, all without piercing its scaly hide. With successful Perception checks, of if the princess has accompanied the party she will recognize the silver necklace around the serpentine creature’s neck as the one she gave to her true love. If she can kiss the willing beast, the curse will be broken and the Wyrm will revert to their former self.
Otherwise the Wyrm will attack, kill, and then eat any who intrude, or those making loud noises in the adjacent cavern (area 7, above).
The Wyrm‘s hide is invulnerable to non-magical slashing and piercing damage, and will make a grand prize for any who can collect it. If the Wyrm is slain its scales can be made into hide armor that grants the wearer resistance to slashing and piercing damage. This legendary magic item requires attunement.
Posted in 1st edition D&D, 3rd edition Dungeons & Dragons / d20 fantasy / Pathfinder, 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons, Adventure, Fantasy, rules agnostic by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
This last weekend I went to GaryCon up in beautiful, chilly Lake Geneva Wisconsin, and I had a great time! I met up with old friends and made some new ones, and we all played a bunch of games and enjoyed the great company. Here are some highlights from the con for me.
I ran a session of Vampyre Women of Venus, the board game that we put out a couple of years ago. We had two ticketholders show up and one player drop in, thanks to the great table flag system. We played though to the co-operative victory and then played some homebrew rules that Jayden came up with for the post-rocketship-part-collection escape from the suddenly moving Vampyre Queen.
All told I got some great new ideas for the game, including a new version of the rules where undefeated Venus cards remain in the space where they were drawn for other players to try to challenge. This builds the map as it is explored and creates more opportunity for strategy.
I also ran a session of what’s becoming my favorite scenario: my D&D convention version of Into The Unknown (B1), which I update every time a group runs through it. This time, very impressively, the group actually managed to complete the scenario, both finding their way to the final encounter and defeating all portions of it for a flawless victory! Well done, all. Prizes are on the way.
One of the best things about the convention, and something I hadn’t ever seen at one, was the table flags. These flags served two purposes. First, there were red and green cards so that a table could indicate if they had any openings for new players to join.
But even more exciting was the yellow flag, which we raised when we wanted to order from the tableside menu. The food was really good, and the beer was cold and cheap with the GaryCon cup I got as a GM. It was truly excellent. I ran an eight hour session and ate healthily and felt great.
The role-playing game history museum they had set up was AMAZING! In the wargame room, next to the TSR Joust tournament, was a mini-museum display with great information about the early days of Dave Arneson and Gary Gygax’s gaming days. Seeing Arneson’s original dice and clay dragon figurine really touched me.
Socially, I got to hang out with Stephan Porkny and the HawaiiCon crew, meet a whole bunch of nice new people, and see some live-streaming celebrity D&D from behind the curtain, instead of in front of the cameras for once. It was great seeing everyone and hanging out. As it always is for me at a con, I learned a lot from playing in and watching other people’s games.
I’m honored to have been invited and have already booked accommodations for it again next year.
Posted in convention, Review and tagged GaryCon by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
#NSFW #puppets #apocalypse #robot #mutant
Posted in d20 Future, Fiction, Gamma World, Post-Apocalyptic and tagged #NSFW #puppets #apocalypse #robot #mutant by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
After receiving several requests for this, we’ve added an uncut copy of the map for Vampyre Women of Venus (available in our store here). Now you can print this single file at any size you like for your home games of VWoV! No cutting or assembly required.
We sincerely hope you enjoy, and happy gaming!
Posted in announcement, Board Game and tagged Vampyre Women of Venus by Adam A. Thompson with 1 comment.
If you’d like to play some games with Adam, schedules are as follows:
Classic Dungeons & Dragons (5e) – Saturday at 10:00 AM, 8 hours, Student Center: Sammy’s:4
Many heroes have traveled into the hills above Verbonbc in search of the rumored lost treasure of Rufulo and Zanzabar. But a new terror inhabited the black craig a month ago – a dragon and evil cultists devoted to it. Now two of the village’s children have been kidnapped, slated to be sacrificed in just eight hours! Dare you adventurers venture thither to rescue the children?
Traveller: First Run – Sunday 10 AM, 4 hours, Herring Hall:224:1
Try your hand at one of the original science-fiction role-playing games: Traveller. No previous experience required. In a far-flung future where anything is possible, the players will first create their own characters, earning skills, contacts, and enemies as they journey through the depths of space. Then, events that no one could have predicted will hurl the characters into crisis that could threaten their very lives!
Vampyre Women of Venus Open Play – Friday at 6:00 PM, 4 hours, at Forum C FORC-363
An adventure board game set on a pulp sci-fi planet Venus where the players’ rocket ship has crash landed. New players may try their luck every hour with this quick game. Rotating rounds of play should be the norm. Three different ways to win—solo or co-operative. Stop by at the top of any hour to play.
Classic Dungeons & Dragons (5e) – Saturday at 1:00 PM, 8 hours 1777, Westgate A WGA-394
Many heroes have traveled into the hills above Verbonbc in search of the rumored lost treasure of Rufulo and Zanzabar. But lately, a new threat has inhabited the bleak peak: A night-soaring dragon and its reptilian worshipers. Now the cultists have kidnapped some of the village children to be sacrificed to the dragon at midnight! Dare ye adventurers venture thither?
Posted in announcement, convention and tagged GaryCon, news: convention, OwlCon by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
For the 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons players out there, here’s a magic item from our unpublished adventure For Love of Evil. Dan and I wrote this adventure to run at GenCon in 2009 – it’s a scenario where the 30th level Player Characters are trying to release the ultimate god of evil to unmake the universe.
Lvl 28 +5 2,125,000 gp
Armor: hide, chain, scale, plate
Enhancement: AC, Dexterity & Strength
Property: The player does not keep track of their own hit points while wearing the armor, instead the DM does. In addition, whenever the player wishes to use a healing surge, they must make a saving throw. Success indicates that they can, failure indicates that they instead attack the nearest enemy (via charge etc.) In addition, while bloodied, the wearer of this armor gains +2 to speed and +2 to athletics checks.
Cursed: Removing the armor from a living creature requires a Remove Affliction ritual with a penalty to the Heal check equal to the armor’s level.
Posted in 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons, Fantasy, Magic Item and tagged #Berserk by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
Robert Pearce‘s new Traveller suppliment Starship Geomorphs is a huge new resource for science-fiction gamers, filled with beautiful illustrations, hundreds of starship deckplan geomorphs, and most importantly, really good suggestions for using these modular maps in your home game. Designed to be used to quickly generate starship and spaceport maps, these geomorphs also provide inspiration when designing deck plans for new ships.
Representing three years of painstaking work, this beautiful 185 page book is a great resource for any science-fiction role-player, and he’s made it available as a free download! I recommend it highly to any sci-fi gamemaster, or anyone who wants to design starship interiors.
Included in the free guide are instructions for printing these maps out to use in your home game for both 15mm and 25mm scale miniatures.
This wonderful resource also includes maps for areas one doesn’t usually see in deckplans, like recreation areas, many different common areas, shopping areas, arboretums, viewing galleries, and even agricultural spaces. I will definitely be using these to build out starports and megaships in my Traveller game.
Posted in Editorial, Review, Science-Fiction, Traveller by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
Captain Liv is a rough-around-the-edges, lusty human woman with the hard-nosed independent attitude common to the free traders of the Skein Reach. She flies the Sable Tiger, a custom GM 210 that can cover three parsecs in a jump.
Canny, she knows when to hold ’em and when to fold, when to run, and when to fight. First Mate “Seargent Mac” is a humorless retired Imperial Space Marine, who lost a leg in a crusade against the lizard people of Marzox 6b and now mostly gets around with the help of a grav belt. Jack is friendly and sociable, knows the basics of all of the Sable Tiger’s systems, and fills in wherever needed. They are often on the lookout for good crew, whether it is stewards to attend to their passengers, gunners to operate the turrets, engineers, sensor operators, or even some new lover picked up in starport, whisked off to the stars.
Cpn. Liv was born Lavinia Thunxzon on Johnston’s World, and got her start flying with her father on his free trader the Tortise, running the planet’s agricultural goods to Aroura Station. After seven years the Tortise was shot down and plundered in the Archeron system. Her father was killed, she was badly injured, and the remains of the Tortise were scrapped by the pirate flotilla.
Pressed into service, Liv proved herself a capable crewmember who was good with a blade if need be. The next eleven years were spent in incredible adventures in space, living outside the law, warring with other gangs and pirates, gaining friends and killing enemies, until she gained the trust and friendship of Grgrz, the massive, ruthless reptilian pirate admiral leading the underground resistance to the Empire’s Crusade on Marzox. She was given Captaincy of the Sable Tiger to run supplies past the Imperial blockades, and was there at Marzox 6b when the Imperial Bombardment Fleet arrived and the Crusade was ushered to a bloody victory on a scorched planet. The resistance in tatters, Cpn. Liv fled in the Sable Tiger rimward, back to the Skein Reach.
Since then the Sable Tiger has been on the run in the Skein Reach, laying low, running the old agricultural cargo run from Jhonston’s World to Aroura Station, and doing jobs in other remote destinations in the Reach.
Merchant (Free Trader) rank 1
Rogue (Pirate) rank 1
Human Female, age 34
DEX 11 (+1)
EDU 5 (-1)
SOC 3 (-1)
Gun Combat (Energy) 1
Gunner (Turret) 1
Melee (Blade) 2
Pilot (Spacecraft) 2
Tactics (Military) 1
Vacc Suit 2
Saber (3D damage)
Laser Carbine (4D damage)
Hostile Environment Vacc Suit (+12 Protection)
Sable Tiger (customized GM-210)
Built on a powerful Galactic Monopoly modular chassis, this sleek ship is packed to the gills with speed. Wrapped in a custom superdense armored hull, the Sable Tiger has the maneuverability and toughness to blast past blockades, returning fire along the way.
Hull 200 ton (Standard, Partially Streamlined – 80 Hull Points)
Armor 4 (Bonded Superdense – 6.4 tons)
Jump 2 parsecs (10 tons)
Thrust 6G (12 tons)
Power 210 (TL 12 – 14 tons – Basic Systems 40, M Drive 120, Jump Drive 40, Sensors 2, Weapons 12)
Fuel 70.6 tons (uses 20 tons per parsec jumped)
Fuel Processor (1 ton – processes 20 tons / day)
Bridge (3 tons)
Sensors – Military Grade (2 tons – power 4) – Radar, Lidar, Jammers
Armaments – 2 x double turrets (2 tons) with:
– beam laser (power 4), sandcaster
– pulse laser (power 4), pulse laser (power 4)
Staterooms 6 (24 tons)
Common Area (5 tons)
Cargo Capacity – 50 tons
Cpn Liv and the Sable Tiger in your Game
Cpn. Liv and the Sable Tiger could be friends, enemies, contacts, allies, or anything else to the players in your Traveller game. Perhaps the Sable Tiger needs crew for some desperate and audacious job? Or they’ve been hired to follow the players and collect a bounty? Or they swoop in to help in response to the player’s distress call? Or they’re rivals, after the same thing as the players?
About Cpn. Liv
I whipped up these characters when the Travellers in my Monday game got rescued from Archeron 4, where they had become stranded. On the spot I came up with Cpn. Liv of the Sabre Tiger, Sgt. Mac, and Jack, her crew. The above stats were generated with the new version of Traveller (Mongoose v2).
Original stats from my campaign notes:
Captain Liv – Lavinia Thunson, captain of the Sabre Tiger (fast trader), St 8, Dx 9, En 6, In 8, Ed 6, So 3.
Sabre Tiger crew – Mac (ex imperial trooper), Jack (the friendly one), Zack (mechanic), Hailey (Mechanic), and Cookie (steward)
Posted in Character, Science-Fiction, Starship, Traveller by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
Upon the black sand shores of far north-eastern Findor, a few miles up the road from an isolated fishing village, there is a three-story monastery of basalt stones. Beside it is a shrine to no named god, built beneath the shelter of the upturned prow of a wrecked sailing ship. The monks there will tell visitors that the monastery was founded by a sailor who washed ashore after a great storm, and who took shelter and a vow of silence beneath the wreckage of the ship. He built gardens and started building the monastery tower, and others joined him there in a peaceful life of contemplation of the dark ocean and the cold wind.
Now the monastery is well established, with a well, two fishing boats, an apiary and meadery, numerous chickens, and flocks of sheep and goats. Three monks oversee things, Brother Trausti, a mute human who teaches unarmed combat* and stonework, Brother Fardinb, a friendly half-elf who oversees the work of the younger monks on the monastery’s farms, and Sister Gretta, a studious hill gnome who oversees the library that takes up the top floor of the monastery tower.
Unknown to all of the residents the monastery has a magical connection to the astral plane. The sailor who founded the monastery had a vision of the Sea of Stars when he was dying of drowning, and meditated on it until he discovered how to travel there in his mind. His frequent psychic travels formed a weak connection between the training room that makes up the first floor of the monastery and the astral plane, and as a result planar travel and communication with the outer realms is slightly easier in the first floor of the monastery.
Through his meditation, and his time carving the stone of the training room, Trausti has begun to receive visions from the deep astral, as have the rest of the monks in the monastery. These visions, like those received by others scattered around the world, relate to the impending apocalypse of the Summer Frost, and are the result of White Eye’s secret spell to locate the pieces of the long lost Ring of Runes. With it in his grasp and reforged, White Eye intends to use its world-altering power to encase the world in eternal ice.
*Because one player wanted to play a monk in my Monday D&D game, I came up with this place on the fly during Session Zero. It turned out to be a great place to tie the plot threads into since we decided the warlock PC would also come from the same place. Good brainstorming in Session Zero really bore some great fruit, in terms of plot.
Posted in Location, Lore / Worldbuilding by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.