The salamander-tail-ogre-nail-blueberry elixir tasted sour?
You’ve been fantastically mutated!
1. Your genitals turn into a snake that attacks everyone but you (if used offensively, use regular poisonous snake stats).
2. Your eyeballs get swollen. Everytime you take damage, they fall from your skull, hanging from the optical nerve until gently put back in. Until the next time you take damage, that is. (-4 to all attacks while in this state).
3. A beard made of live worms grow on your face. It’s very painful to shave, and they come back 1d4 days later.
4. Your skin hardens and cracks, and a nutritious sap bleeds through. Beware of burrowing bugs!
5. Your mouth is perpetually dry and your breath reeks of death.
6. Your buttcrack turns horizontal. Chairs, saddles, armour and pants are unconfortable unless custom-made. Plus your ass claps when you run or climb down stairs.
Continuing from the last session, Josias and Root used a wounded berserk frogman to trigger a secret door.
As soon as the stone door slid open, a pale blue light emanated from within. As they entered, a naked woman riding a snail greeted them with a soft voice.
At this moment one player remembered that in my published module “Sacrebleu!” there’s a lady polymorphed into a giant slug, and we discussed if there’s a pattern…
She sang an unknown melody, and approached Josias, who still had his hands tied together. Gently touching his face with one hand, she gestured Root to come closer. Josias felt a strong smell of formaldehyde as the snail mucked up his feet.
But he is an experienced delver, and jumped over the snail, riding pillion and putting his arms around the lady, limiting her moves.
In a sudden burst of rage she demonstrated having inhuman strenght, almost tearing Josia’s arms apart. While he brushed his face against the soft red hair, Root could see that an umbilical cord connected her ladyparts to the snail’s shell.
Root then threw a lit torch against the snail, hitting the mucus and dealing little damage.
The lady then cast a spell, which I rolled randomly on the Maze Rats table. Fortunately for them I rolled some sort of Wall of Fortune Telling, which manifested itself like a semi translucent screen, where Root and Josias could see a future where they would die horrible deaths.
Both of them were not fazed by the horrendous visions, and the combat went on.
In a stroke of luck, Josias raised his still bound hands around her throat and tried dismounting the snail, taking her with him. He rolled a crit on a strength test, and snapped her neck.
Both fell on the floor, the umbilical cord ruptured and gushed green goo (it’s always green!) all over the place, while the giant snail began steaming with heat.
Root threw a vial of poison at it, but almost hit himself, which didn’t matter much since we began a game of Snail Roulette!
When writing this encounter, I couldn’t make my mind on what would happen if the Slime Witch got separated from her snail. So I just showed them my notes and we rolled a d6 for it:
1-2: the snail explodes. Everyone rolls Agility, and takes 1d6 when failing. It’s enough to kill a 1st level adventurer in a pinch.
3-4: the harmless snail turns into a flail snail, with 4 attacks at a +1 bonus. That’s also enough to beat a whole party to a pulp.
5-6: the snails flees.
Not surprisingly, they wanted to fight the Flail Snail, but rolled a 1. The snail’s shell exploded like a cluster bomb, and the delvers made their rolls.
Josias rolled a 10, the bare enough to make it, and shielded himself with the body of the slime witch. Root rolled a 5, but only 1 for damage, staying alive.
We ended the combat there, and I began rewriting the next encounters with more randomness.
I liked laying all the possible outcomes on the table before rolling them, and the players liked it too. We got the feeling that chance is the main driving force behind the game, much in the spirit of Maze Rats.
By the way: I have an adventure for sale on DriveThru RPG. All the profit goes straight to the best Child Cancer Hospital in Brazil. I’d greatly appreciate if you helped, each dollar is 4 reais! See here: Flesh Hill
Josias, the second level survivor, met two other colleagues at “The Lobster”, in the city of Blacksand. They were: Cunha Wall, youngest and last of the Wall brothers, and Root, a tattooed tomahawk wielding sorcerer from the Dark Continent,
They went into the dungeon and into the spore room. After lowering both levers they closed the front door and opened the second level passage. Eventually they saw a bright yellow giant centipede, thick as a salami and very menacing, but it scurried back into a crack in the wall.
The descent to the second level seemed easy, as their chain and rope stairs were still in place, but Jonas failed his roll and soon found himself entangled in an almost invisible web.
His friends saw him get in trouble and managed to stop before getting entangled themselves, and the Spider Lady sprang from the mess of webs and darkness, and quickly enveloped him in a cocoon.
All of this was to show them that the dungeon is alive, and monsters left behind just don’t sit on their asses
With a murmur, he pleaded for mercy and told about the other humans who were to help him, and the arachnoid demon woman let him go.
The others heard him talking to someone, but couldn’t figure out what or who. They descended too, burning as much web as possible.
Meanwhile, Jonas received a clay tablet from Ms. Spider, were it read: Light the brazier and open the secret door after the waterfall.
Josias pressed on, passing by a room with a punched in steel door, and jumped over a water fixture on the wall – probably the “waterfall”.
Root and Cunha lost sight of him, and moved through the webbed maze, catching a glimpse of a cocooned Kokomoa (dubbed “Kokos” by the players).
Always a step behind Josias, Root and Cunha reached the waterfall, but were intrigued by the murmuring companion and went back to the area filled with webs.
Actually is a dick move by the two players. They were still mad because Josias’ player had betrayed them and were looking for a reason to do him in.
Meanwhile Josias reached the brazier and lighted it up. It flared red and produced a sickly light, which then illuminated four hand-shaped crevices on a near wall.
He tried to touch one of them, but noticed they were searing hot. He then walked back to the waterfall area to gather some other to try and cool it before touching.
Root and Cunha went to the webbed area, but noticed their path was barred with even more webs. From the darkness sprang six red eyes and a deep voice that warned them to got back and respect the deal. They tried to ask more questions, but the voice boomed through the corridor, almost extinguishing the torches. Suddenly, the eyes vanished.
In the end, the three of them met at the waterfall, and Josias asked for a container, since he had none. Root (whose player held a grudge) tried lying and said that a giant spider-lady demanded that they delivered Josias to her.
But he got fed up with talking and just said that she had given tips of a secret room, in exchange of the a part of the profits.
Josias then grabbed some water with a cloth bag and hurried to the brazier, before the water drained away.
In a fit of rage, Root fired an arrow , but missed badly. He shot other two arrows, almost hitting himself (that’s what you get for being a dick).
Josias tossed the water on the hand symbol, cooling it momentarily, and use the cloth bag to no avail. Maybe the symbol needed direct flesh contact, but the storm of arrows kept him from thinking too much (although he did keep a blasé stance while being fired upon).
Root issued a warning, but Josias took his chance and touched the lukewarm symbol, which flashed purple, and began heating up until returnin to its searing white colour.
Cunha Wall crossed the waterfall, and Root went after him, hatchet in hand.
They met beside the brazier, and an argument erupted between the trio. Root accused Josias of strinking a deal with the spider demon, and Josias pointed that he was attacked without cause. Cunha was scared shitless.
In a fit of bravery Josias tossed his sword aside and allowed Cunha to bind his hands.
At this point I got fed up with this pointless metagame-drive discussion and rolled on my random encounter table: two Kokomokoas.
The pair of frogmen came sliding on their bellies, one of them carrying a knife. Josias retreated, but Cunha rolled well and with a couple of attacks downed the unarmed Kokomokoa.
The knife wielding frog entered into a battle frenzy, and critically hit Cunha, biting his face and crushing the front of his skull.
Root finally landed an attack, but the final blow came from Josias. With his hands still bound together, he bullrushed the Koko into the wall with the four burning hand prints.
The creature slammed against the secret door, and the frogskin sizzled and fried against the magical symbols, opening the door and sending the frightened Koko back to the waterfall.
From the secret chamber, a pale blue glow emerged…
I had half an hour before my gaming session and decided to make my first isometric map.
It was easier than I thought it would be, but harder to achieve the artistic level I was aiming for.
I’m posting the map without markings and such in order to allow people to use it for whatever they want.
Here’s how I’m gonna run it:
The first room is accessible through a pit trap, 35 ft. deep.
It is also clear of enemies. Some old bones litter the bottom of the pit trap.
A great oak door is nailed shut, but not locked.
After it, a 5 ft. deep pit, lined with mudbricks, is home to 2d12 dog-sized slugs (1 HD, armour as leather), which coat the floor with a very sticky goo. Whenever one of them dies, it emits an ear-piercing shriek, alerting the giant slug in the cave, on a roll of 1 to 2 (1d8).
The pit and the corridor after it have hundreds of chains hanging from the ceiling. 1d8 ghoul howler monkeys (as ghoul, but able to move through brachiation) hang above adventurers, waiting to literally get the drop on them, with only the faint sound of the dangling chains to alert their victims.
A gargantuan slug (7 HD, armour asleather) alternates between lurking in the pool of black water built in the back of the cave – which gives access to an underground lake – and eating one of the smaller slugs in the pit (50% chance of being in the cave at any given delve). When fighting in the corridor, it’s large enough to fill the whole corridor. The goo secreted when it moves deals 1d4 dmg/round to leather or skin, eating away boots and shoes.
The small alcove accessible by a short iron ladder is 10 ft. high, and littered with scraps of bones and skin, housing the ghoul howler monkeys when they are not playing with the smaller slugs.
I didn’t describe treasure, but I suggest that a cache of items and coins to be placed it the northern alcove.
Zeus Lycaeus: o culto de Zeus era geralmente feito em locais altos, com templos grandiosos. Mas numa caverna da Grécia havia um aspecto mais sombrio do Deus – o “Zeus Lobisomem”. Um retorno aos instintos mais básicos da humanidade, a destruição e a morte.
Esta história de Zeus está ligada a um cara chamado Lycaon da Arcádia, que tentou enganar Zeus servindo um banquete com os restos mortais do próprio filho.
Matar o próprio filho é um tabu, e Zeus, representando a civilização, puniu o cara transformando ele num lobo.
Isso serve para lembrar que os deuses, principalmente no politeísmo, representam aspectos da vida das pessoas, e esses aspectos tem um lado bom e um lado ruim.
É por isso que a maioria dos “deuses” dos mundos do RPG são chatinhos (p. ex.: Forgotten Realms – meu xodó, e Arton): são unidimensionais.
Na prática, todos os deuses criados pelo homem tem suas dualidades.
Então a dica é: todo templo tem que ter uma fachada, e um aspecto para os “iniciados”.
Não precisa cair no clichê que “todo mundo é maligno e o mundo é cinza”, mas deve ter algo que não é conhecido pelo grande público.
Vamos aos exemplos:
1. Um culto bondoso pode oferecer serviços de cura para a população, mas manter um calabouço para os incuráveis, já que seria cruel simplesmente matá-los.
2. O deus da guerra promove a honra entre os oficiais, mas flagelos e torturas ritualísticas para aqueles que falharem no cumprimento do dever.
3. O templo do comércio tem um serviço de juízes conciliadores, trazendo a paz entre o povo, mas também abriga uma ordem de assassinos para eliminar quem impõe barreiras ao livre trânsito de mercadorias.
Em todas as situações acima deve haver uma explicação mais ou menos lógica para os atos extremos, pois, as pessoas sempre vão tentar justificar seus atos, racionalizando as políticas de cada entidade.
Todavia, adicionar uma “camada” em cada templo e religião também abre oportunidades para desenvolver uma campanha: o que é preciso para ser aceito nesse clube secreto? Quais as vantagens de fazer parte? O que acontece se você discordar deles?