The “Boast of White Eye”, as it is called by the magi of Setheria Isle, was found by the Magus Oahkill when a quest led him to the Ice Isles of northern Findor, some one hundred years ago. His written account of the journey contains the following passage. He first saw the sign of a simple spell, and investigated. His eldritch sight deciphered secret wizard-writing sorcerously scrawled across an iced-over engraving of the royal family of dwarves who had built the towers here so long ago.
Posted in Character, Fiction by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
The Dragon’s Cave
Once the players reach the entrance read or paraphrase the following:
The rocky hillside, cracked and smoking from various vents, descends to the valley floor here where a wide, low cavern lies. A natural stone awning canopies an open space of small scattered rocks. WIthin, a dark passage emits heat and haze.
One goblin hides among the rocks in at the entrance (DC 20 perception to spot) and watches the approach (perception +0). If he sees the party approaching the cave he will alert the goblins in area 1 (see below).
An alternate entrance can be discovered through investigating the vents on the hillside above and succeeding on a DC 20 nature, survival or dungeoneering skill check. Success means they discover a fissure on the hillside above the cave, which leads to a corridor behind the entrance guards (area 2 on map).
Dragon’s Lair Areas
When the players enter the lair, run the following encounters as the players progress through the areas.
1) Guards and Wards – CR 4 – XP 1300
Within, more goblins with cover and bows and magical traps pass the time by playing at dice inside the entrance.
Trap – At the apex of the entrance, a mark has been made on the stone with grayish paint. Any who cross the threshold or touch the rune trigger this glyph of warding, which summons a poison frog swarm that will attack whoever triggered it.
Creatures – 5 goblins – one on watch among the rocks at the entrance, the rest wary. The goblins will attempt to use cover from the large rock in the center of the chamber and fire their shortbows at attackers.
2) Savage Riders – CR 5 – XP 2000
A natural stone passage splits in an area with several interconnecting chambers. Here, a couple of goblin worg-riders and their mounts stand guard.
Creatures – 2 x Goblin commandos (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/unique-monsters/cr-1/goblin-commando) and 2 worg. They will attack the players with shortbows, charges, and halberds on their mounts. The goblins will try to keep moving and flank single opponents.
3) A Fallen Champion – CR 3 – XP 800
Among the corpses of many goblins, the party finds the temple champion’s corpse, which has been partially eaten, and his ceremonial trappings -a helm, shield, and necklace.
Creatures – 2 zombies and 3 skeletons, animated corpses of the goblins that the champion killed, rise up and attack the party as they prepare to leave the area.
Treasure – The necklace is an amulet of health +2. If returned to the Temple further rewards will be bestowed upon them in the form of honors – they will be named Champions of Krom and a feast will be held.
4) The Chamber of Earthfire – CR 6 – 2400 XP
In the chamber of earthfire, a large cavern with lava pools and a natural stone bridge, the party must rescue the dragon’s eggs from the goblin wizard who ejected her. His intention is to hatch them himself and train them.
Hazard – the chamber is extremely hot and each round inhabitants who are not immune to extremes of heat must make a DC 10 Fortitude check or become Fatigued.
Hazard – the area around the nest is even hotter due to closer proximity to the lava, and creatures take 1d3 points of fire damage while past the stone bridge.
Hazard – anyone falling into the pool of molten rock in this chamber will take 5d6 points of damage per round.
Creatures – Goblin Wizard (see below) and 2 Bugbear Bodyguards, one of whom wields the Beastblade (see below) will confront the party. Both are wearing hide armor and are AC 19 (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/monster-listings/humanoids/bugbear). The goblin’s wizardry protests all three from the sweltering heat hazards of the chamber except the lava, and he will fight the battle flying around the chamber casting spells.
Treasure – The goblin wizard and the bugbears carry 10 platinum and 30 gold coins each. The dragon’s hoard consists of ore and globs of lead, copper, silver, iron, and gold that are melted together into a nest which weighs 500 pounds and is worth 1000 gold.
Within the lumpy metallic nest rest three egg-shaped stones, very hard, scaly, and hot to the touch. A DC 20 Knowledge Arcana skill check will reveal that these are the dragon’s eggs and require a constant temperature in order to hatch. A DC 25 Knowledge Arcana skill check combined with a DC 25 Knowledge Nature skill check will reveal that these three will hatch in 5d12 days if undisturbed. A DC 25 appraise check will reveal they could fetch up to 500 gold apiece.
Developments – If the eggs are harmed or removed the dragon will wreak her wrath upon the valley. The eggs will only hatch if their temperature is properly maintained.
Concluding the Adventure
Return to the temple and complete a skill challenge where the PCs must give an accounting of their deeds before the dragon is convinced that her treasure is safe and will leave. As she does she will sniff all of the PCs to check if they smell like her eggs, or, more direly, dragon blood. If she notices the Beastblade which the bugbear took from her hoard she will mention that a fool carried it last and that they may keep it as “the memory is sour”. If flattered she will tell the story of a group of thieves who came into her lair. She killed two and two more escaped, but the one carrying the Beastblade fought to the death with the smell of fear strong upon him.
Any harm to the eggs leads to dire repercussions the next day after the dragon finds out. She will hunt the players down if possible, likely destroying the village Sera and the temple regardless.
When the players rid the Temple of Krom Frykt of the dragon they are offered 100 gold coins each as a gesture of gratitude. Additionally, as the temple’s kennels have just had a litter, and they are offered up to two mountain hound pups.
Faoer Dornoe, The temple elder, expresses concern at the machinations of the goblin waste wizard, as the goblins have not troubled the valley since he was a boy. Their wolf and goat borne raiders had earned them a reprisal from the warriors of the temple and the men of the village. He mentions that a scouting expedition may need to be mounted and asks the players if they would consider undertaking such a task, which could lead to further adventures in the wastes to the north. Perhaps the players will meet the wizard’s two brothers.
Deom-Adr, earth dragon, CR 10
Neutral large dragon (earth, fire)
Senses: darkvision, tremorsense
12 HD, 131 hp
AC 22, touch 10, flat-footed 21 (+1 Dex, +12 natural, –1 size)
F +12 R +10 W +9
Move: 40 feet
Bite +19, 2d6+10 +1d6 fire damage, 2 x claws +17, 1d8+7 damage
Breath Weapon – 60 foot line of fire – 6d8 fire damage, DC 20 reflex save for 1/2 damage
Choking Smoke – at will the dragon can exhale a cloud of choking poisonous gas and smoke. Each round of exhalation grows the cloud by 10′ diameter. The cloud gives concealment for all within it, which the dragon ignores due to tremorsense. Living creatures in the cloud must make a DC 20 Fortitude saving throw each round or begin to suffocate and take 1d6 points of subdual damage per round in the smoke.
Stats – S 24 D 14 C 18 I 12 W 13 Ch 12
Canny and suspicious, Deom-Adr seethes with anger at the goblins who are holding her eggs hostage. She has had dealings with the men of Sera in the past and is reluctant to inform them of the true nature of her treasures and will resort to threats if the players ply her for details. She will instead insist that the players secure all of her treasure and kill or drive off the goblins.
Ixame, Wizard of the Wastes – XP 1200
NE small humanoid (goblin) Witch 5
hp 20 AC 11 F +1 R +2 W +4
Spear +2, 1d6 damage
Spells – lightning bolt, hold person, summon swarm, sleep, ray of enfeeblement, cause fear
Hexes – Evil Eye, Flight, Healing
Gear – spear, scroll of cure light wounds, resist elements, ray of enfeeblement
Stats – S 10 D 12 C 10 I 16 W 14 Ch 10
Posted in 3rd edition Dungeons & Dragons / d20 fantasy / Pathfinder, Creature, Encounter and tagged creature type: dragon, dragon by Adam A. Thompson with no comments yet.
I took a Saturday to make a trip out to SSC 2013 to run a session of The Tomb of Athganazar.
The adventure went well — even had a few folks playing who expressed interest in seeing our other adventures, so I’ve pointed them to this site. If you, dear reader, are one of them, thanks for the kindly-worded validation. The adventuring party found a very creative solution to the wizard’s challenge, different than those at the last con, but just as off-the-wall and fun for all. This seems to be the norm for games I run at cons, which is very encouraging, both in the flexibility of the adventure as well as the creativity of the players at Texas gaming cons. Excessive hack-n-slash isn’t as fun for me as a storyteller, as it too often turns adventures into glorified calculators. The question for me has always been whether players enjoy this outside-the-lines style of session, and it seems they do. Again, thank you all players who roll with these adventures. I am grateful for your participation and positivity.
On the floor, I met a visual artist, Joey Blackard, with an intriguing, yet simple style, and picked up one of his framed originals. I’d love to use more of his work in our adventures; more on that in time. Then, after running the session, happened upon Diesel on the vendor’s floor, and though I usually don’t approach such luminaries in the history of role playing, he seemed very approachable, so I decided I’d say hi. Thirty minutes into our discussion of role playing, scoping projects, the experience of working at TSR, then WoTC, and finally life in Austin, I realized that we had a lot of common ground. He was so down to earth and genuinely interested that I had to cut myself short or I would have kept talking with him all evening. I’ll definitely look him up at other Texas cons; he tends to make the rounds each year. One of my favorite con experiences ever.
As usual, the Houston hospitality was second to none, the organizers, gamers, and other locals taking care of me as they always do. Special shout out to Leo and Phil for the discussions and good times on Saturday night after we’d packed out of the con. Always great to hear about your campaigns and story ideas and to meet more of your friends and colleagues in adventurecraft.
More to come as we are already hard at work on an adventure to run atOwlCon in early 2014. This one will showcase the Dungeonstone Caves and Caverns Set that recently closed on Kickstarter. Odds are they’ll have some sets available for purchase at the con. So in six months, come check out the booth; the adventure will be run in multiple sessions at the neighboring table.
Posted in convention by Stephen Hilderbrand with no comments yet.