Tuesday, January 1, 2019

A New Year, A New Adventure

With every new year comes a multitude of new adventures, whether it be in real life or in an RPG. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a proud person. I occasionally get into writing ruts and look online for adventure seeds for ideas. Most are pretty generic, many don't provide a good location for adventure, and some feel incomplete, even for something as broad as an adventure seed. To celebrate the birth of a new year, here are a few adventure seeds of increasing weirdness.

Just so you guys and gals know what's coming and what I think when creating adventures. When creating the framework for an adventure I usually ask myself the following ten questions that don't really need to be answered in any specific order:

The Occasion/Dungeon:
Where is the dungeon?
What is the dungeon?
What is the safe haven near the dungeon? Is there one?

The Speaker/DM:
Who is the main antagonist?
What does the antagonist want?
What tools does the antagonist have to achieve their goals? 
What memorable imagery does the antagonist have?

The Audience/Dungeon Inhabitants:
What is one of the most common enemies in the dungeon?
Do the enemies in here have a theme or commonality connecting them?
Who is one friendly or neutral NPC in the dungeon?

Since we are using adventure seeds, we can pretty much ignore the questions under the occasion because most of them have already been answered. I typically like answering the speaker section first, before anything else. The thing about the audience is that I already assume and make it clear that the PCs know that the dungeon they are delving into is a lucrative place. I mainly run dungeon crawls, so these questions may be different if you are doing an entire story arc or a larger scale adventure. If you don't make that obvious, you might want to add another question, Why are the PCs here; what are the stakes? Anyway, this may seem pretty irrelevant at the moment, but basically, I'm going to write up a possible route to go down that answers these questions. Hopefully, this provides some brain-fuel for you and a direction to take the adventure into, it's certainly been helpful for me. Without further ado, here are the adventure seeds, in order of increasing weirdness:

1: Between Us And The Dead (Markus Neidel)
Long ago, some terrible disaster brought death to all the people in a small and isolated hamlet. The prophets and seers screamed that it was the end of everything, but "the end" is never necessarily the end. Time passed, and soon other people picked up the torch of raising a civilization from ruins to riches. The reborn hamlet has had a slow start into greatness, especially with the undead problem that it has. As a villager, you just know to close your doors at night and the dead will soon roam back to wherever they came from. Recently, as the disaster's 100th year anniversary comes about, the dead have been getting more aggressive, their shapes have been becoming more distorted as they transform into abominations, and the crypt keepers have been calling for help in clearing this infestation.

Possible Route: Experimentation And Extinction

The Speaker/DM:
Who is the main antagonist? An outlawed occultist from a place far more popular than this hamlet.
What does the antagonist want? To continue their disastrous experimentations and harness the power of the hamlet's original disaster.
What tools does the antagonist have to achieve their goals? Weird machines and tinctures that can revive the dead in mangled mounds.
What memorable imagery does the antagonist have? Horrible scars from their experimentation in dark science and dark magic, they won't heal. 

The Audience/Dungeon Inhabitants:
What is one of the most common enemies in the dungeon? Zombies who have been experimented on.
Do the enemies in here have a theme or commonality connecting them? Terrible experimentation that has caused them to mutate.
Who is one friendly or neutral NPC in the dungeon? The poor lantern boy that the occultist took with him along this arduous journey as an "apprentice"


2: A Rose Infested (Bogdan Rezunenko)
On a lonely hill rests a giant willow tree with rose red leaves. It is a very rumor-shadowed place, the children say that fairies inhabit the trees, while the town fool says that the tree can be sapped for poisonous alcohol. Everybody has their weird theories about the nature of the lone tree. One thing is for certain, something with this tree is just wrong, and recent events have made the townspeople ask for help. It first started with livestock disappearing in the night and their bones being seen later, hanging on the branches of the tree. Then it evolved to the town fool venturing into the tree in the middle of the night, only to later be seen raving mad, holding weird treasures and trinkets. The last straw began when an important person in town rallied up a small mob to burn down the tree. The mob's faces were hung from the branches by little strands of sinew, the leader of the mob has still not been seen.

Possible Route: Sanctuary Of The Slumbering Goddess

The Speaker/DM:
Who is the main antagonist? A young Goddess, being incubated deep under the tree.
What does the antagonist want? Sacrifices, to be worshipped.
What tools does the antagonist have to achieve their goals? A cult of loyal followers, they swear that they hear messages from the incubating Goddess.
What memorable imagery does the antagonist have? Giant antlers that branch out of her eye sockets.
The Audience/Dungeon Inhabitants:
What is one of the most common enemies in the dungeon? Creepy cultists dressed in furs.
Do the enemies in here have a theme or commonality connecting them? Creepy masks and robes made of animals.
Who is one friendly or neutral NPC in the dungeon? A giant pile of sentient gelatinous sap, it can speak and has been awakened by the cult's sacrifices, all it wants is food or to be eaten.


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3: Before Her Opulence (Luke Fischer)
Little is known about the behavior and reasoning of extradimensional beings. Some are cunning to the point of showing no emotion while others react whimsically to the point that they barely remember what decisions they made a few minutes ago. Lady Ghadia is part of the ladder, and now she has used her dying power to summon the PCs to her palace. Apparently in dire straits, she can't remember why she and her ever-entranced worshippers have been holed up in her throne room, but she would like control of her palace back. The only problem lies in the fact that her ungodly servants and slaves have risen up and that her palace is a mind-bending mess of opulent rooms and dens of decadence. She promises that she will spare the lives of the players and give them greater power if they can find a way to clear the enemy.

Possible Route: Love, Lust, And Lingering Horror

The Speaker/DM:
Who is the main antagonist? A rejected suitor of Lady Ghadia.
What does the antagonist want? To woo over Lady Ghadia, Lady Ghadia refuses for this to happen.
What tools does the antagonist have to achieve their goals? The suitor has caused an uprising throughout Lady Ghadia's servants.
What memorable imagery does the antagonist have? Lots of body horror, they are angry about being rejected by Lady Ghadia and his undulating body shows it.

The Audience/Dungeon Inhabitants:
What is one of the most common enemies in the dungeon? Long and lanky grey manservant rebels.
Do the enemies in here have a theme or commonality connecting them? Opulence and pseudosexual body horror.
Who is one friendly or neutral NPC in the dungeon? A panicked boy, he was about to be sacrificed to by suitor, but as soon as the uprising came about, he ran.

Just a warning, I may or may not be running one of these adventure seeds and it may or may not be released if it is finished. 
Enjoy the new year!


2 comments:

  1. This is my favorite new blog. Here's to keeping the brain juices pumping and the wheels turning. May your fevered mind churn out many more nightmares!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! This is really nice to hear, especially as a blogger who is just getting started. I'll be sure to keep on churning extraterrestrial horrors, I promise.

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