DANGERS – Volume One

The Danger Series now has five modules, with a combination of twenty-five individual adventures! There are five more environments I have in mind for future adventures, but for now, I am pausing production to focus on other creative projects.

With this in mind, I thought it was time to celebrate the series by bringing out a bundle. The twenty-five adventures contain many of my creations from the Deck of Foes collection and many more new creatures and NPCs to suit the adventures I created. Each encounter has a scalable mechanism that means it is suitable for low (levels 1-4), mid (levels 5-8), high (levels 9-12) and epic (levels 13+) parties.

The adventures are themed by five different environments: jungle, city, woodland, wilderness and kingdoms. With this theming, expect more weird and mysterious monsters in the wilds and woodland realms, and more corruption and plotting in the city and kingdom-based adventures.

Focussing on one-page adventures was such a brilliant exercise in creating concise, atmospheric content. I think it shows that a little goes a long way and I’m sure that the usability is intuitive and simple for a DM running the adventure.

Rolling Word Play – 45

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated
words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Upwardly Nippy Charmingly Involvement,
Imported Sonic Budgeted Goodbye,
and Craved Unruly Westerner.

Upwardly Nippy
Charmingly Involvement
The rage in rich neighbourhoods of the city is to own a set of Pillar
Plants.  Placed on balconies, below
chimneys or on window sills they are ideal for getting rid of unwanted house
guests.  Not only flies but the criminal
fraternity will have their fingers bitten and if something brushes past their
upward openings they will produce a gooey substance that will stick to the
would-be visitor, who will be dealing with the smell and mess for days

Imported Sonic
Budgeted Goodbye
One of the cheapest spells to create for mages is the ‘Message’ spell, which is capable of delivering audible messages to
a particular person even if they are many miles away.  Certain arcane entrepreneurial spirits
thought of a way of creating a Blossom’s Message Pack.  ‘Send your loved one a thoughtful
greeting’.  It just requires them to open
the pack, attach a part of the creature they are sending in to – such as a hair
or the end of a finger nail – and speaking the 6 second message into the
box.  The idea quickly caught on and made
magic not only accessible to many people but affordable!  It was particularly popular for families of merchants
and those travelling into dangerous situations such as war or into piratical

Craved Unruly
Fortune of all sorts is craved by most folk, but one in particular seems to
collect and distribute it.  It is said
she is like a sorting machine for the currency of chance.  Although she goes by many names and many
faces, most of the time she frequents herself in the taverns and brothels of
the city, awaiting chance encounters to come to her.  Once she is found, the crowds gather and the
evening is never dull.  Is she a god or
does she just have a unique talent?  No
one knows for sure.

Only fools play her at cards and so she often changes her
face to make sure she gets her game before they can change their minds.  She very rarely deals with direct requests
preferring fortunes to be won or lost in a genuine way.  One such example is if an unfortunate man is
trampled to death by a horse in her sight, then two long lost brothers may
happen to meet moments later.  At the
same time, if two lovers meet for the first time then a cart driver may lose
his sight.  The world works in such ways
around her.

For what purpose might adventurers go looking for
her?  Or will a chance meeting mean she
gives them a banana peel of fortune?

Rolling Word Play – 44

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Poems Hospitality Safety, Showing Committed Dating, and Prevented Intrigued Resurfaced.

Poems Hospitality Safety
The Cirono Monks are specialists when it comes to creating wards and passwords to access areas such as rooms.  These are normally used to prevent animals and greedy creatures from entering a sacred space but word started getting out that the monks could provide this service for donations to the upkeep of their abbeys. Under the stewardship of Bishop Taliso and then Bishop Frigi, creating protective wards and passwords became a lucrative business venture for the Cirono Monks and clients were encouraged to pay higher sums for their time and expertise.

By the time the adventurers have heard of the monks, they are approached by a client who is keen to get their hands on the riches gained by the Cirono Monks.  Such a mission would not be easy however, as their magics will have blocked the known passageways.  How will the party consider approaching this treasure raid?

Showing Committed Dating
Prince Ordin is the second in line to the throne of his kingdom.  He is powerful but does not have the same responsibilities as his older brother.  Still a bachelor at the age of 30, his father is tired of his son’s ‘casual’ dalliances and lack of commitment.  He has decreed that the prince must get married by the year’s end, and that anyone who can manage to tolerate him long enough to go on five dates over five consecutive days will have earned his son’s hand in marriage.

Is there one among the adventuring party who would want to try to gain this young man’s hand? His many irritabilities include getting bored easily, going to the boar races, spending time in the brothel houses of the poor part of town and storming the stage at plays.  He is like a moth in front of many bright lights, but a moth that is very rich.

Prevented Intrigued Resurfaced
The rocky dwarven kingdom of Trolwind was built on solid foundations, in a gorge and out of the direct sunlight and wind blasts above.  There were difficulties in the beginning with rat men and goblins gaining access through tunnels, but these were blocked off and the area cleansed and maintained.  Much later, after a long period of peace and relative prosperity, the rulers grew lethargic and the rules and regulations the kingdom was built on were carried out less often and in some cases, not at all.  The rat folk have again burrowed into the warm, sheltered tunnels of Trolwind…

There is scope here for the adventurers to either discover the rat folk’s expansion into Trolwind tunnels or be called in to exterminate the problem.  How savvy are these rat folk and has anything else burrowed in with them?

Rolling Word Play – 43

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Homecoming Decent Elect, Leap Blubber Amuse and Firework Underworld Legends.

Homecoming Decent Elect
The Truth Seer of Almoth has been reported to be travelling to the city.  For lawful folk and incorrupt rulers this is very good news, for the Truth Seer has an irresistible power to get anyone to confess their crimes with minimal effort. Many are understandably not keen for his arrival, but at this moment, anyone making excuses to leave the area is immediately under suspicion.  Most criminals are keeping a very low profile already, hoping they’ll be forgotten for the duration of his stay.

There are many who would like to terminate the Truth Seer’s visit, but knowing word gets out, will be very happy to hire a travelling band of adventurers for such a task. There are also those who would seek to protect the Seer in the name of justice.  Which side will the adventurers end up on, and how many enemies will they make in the process?

Leap Blubber Amuse
Faeries and other fey creatures are generally undetectable and like to remain so in order to be mischievous out of sight, only appearing when it suits their interests.  But once a year the usually graceful lake sprites come out of the waters for the meadow harvest to devour the ripe and gleaming juicy berries. Most young sprites have no idea how to contain their appetite and devour the red berries until there is red streams oozing down their faces and arms.  As they finally return to the lake as the sun rises on a new day, many attempt to leap back into the lake but find that their usually ‘spritely’ bodies cannot support their plans.  Many waddle back into the waters in an ungainly way, whilst those who have really eaten too much can be heard moaning as a friend helps to roll them back into the waters.

Firework Underworld Legends
In the caverns and tunnels of the underworld, bright light and echoing noises are said to be the final actions of a living being.  But when in a bind, it has helped adventurers out of the jaws of a giant insect or to get away from a cave troll.  The most famous such instance was Felis the Halfing conjurer and his small band of companions.  In avoiding the desert overhead, they found themselves cut off from their path by an army of savage goblins.  Felis ignited his wand and sent several blasts towards the cavern ceiling.  There were so many bangs and bright lights that the goblins fell about trying to get away from the chaos.  Then one firework went off too close to the cavern roof, causing a massive cave-in.  The companions fled down the path and away.  But the story got out, and the large column of rubble is still known as the Felis Firework to this day.

Rolling Word Play – 42

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Lotion Reserving Flustered, Tasted Proclaimed Titles and Cork Jots Padlock.

Lotion Reserving Flustered
Dr. Losu’s Ointment had been a staple of good health in the city for three generations.  The grandson of the original Dr. Losu is called Pejo and he’s getting on in years.  He has between 5-10 regular customers, which is just enough to get by and continue renting the shop in a quiet street near to the main square.  Then suddenly, more and more people began asking for Dr. Losu’s Ointment.  Crowds gathered forming disorderly queues.  The surprised Pejo found himself going back and forth to the store cupboard for more supplies.  On the third day of this happening, he had to hire muscle to stand by the door after one unruly youth broke a window and stole three bottles for himself.

What rumour has gotten out?  Is the Ointment a clue to uncovering treasure, or was it discovered that an idolised celebrity was seen using it?  Another possible scenario for adventurers is if the Ointment is being used to smuggle illegal substances or treasure.  Once this rumour got out, everyone who heard wanted their chance at claiming the riches for themselves.

Tasted Proclaimed Titles
The most famous food taster belongs to King Spora.  This finely dressed dwarf known as The Right Honorable Vonis is said to be immune to poisons but has tastebuds so sensitive that he can detect any trace of strange substances including the amount of spices and herbs used in a dish.  So far he successfully caught five attempts to poison the king, and even discovered that his wife had been trying to give him a potency potion, for some reason.

The king continues to divide his subjects into liking or hating him, and the adventurers may be called in for two potential scenarios.  The first is to bribe the dwarven superstar on behalf of a gang and failing that, keep him out of the picture long enough to poison the king. In the second scenario, the king has already died, and Vonis claims to be aghast that such a delicate potion could be undetectable.  Who is capable of producing such a potion, or was Vonis bribed?

Corks Jots Padlock
Lisithias Corks is a notorious pest catcher.  He has been known to catch rats, cats, even owls and cockerels if their noises disturb him. He gets a basic pay from the city, but many think he derives most of his pleasure from locking away these undesirables. No one pays him much notice and prefers him to keep to himself, which seems to work best for all parties.

The adventurers will start to see a few notices up about a missing street urchin know as Caper. They’ll also be a few willing to talk about a sweet little kid called Jeren who would get free soup from the back of the Rumbles restaurant. Enquiries will lead the adventurers to speak to Lisithias, to see what he knows.  The question is, where does he keep his catches? The answer is in a hidden basement, only accessible through a portal.  He keeps a golden padlock with him which is used to whisk animals and street children alike into the dungeon dimension.  Luckily, if they get their hands on Lisithias’ padlock, they will see a word etched onto it.  This is the word used to open the portal.  If they go through however, they will need to make sure someone remains who can let them out again!

Rolling Word Play – 41

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Cyberspace Twisted Drive, Suffers Aged Fragmented and Laying Crop Pouch.

Cyberspace Twisted Drive
A drive that allows users to take on another’s consoles and drive their screen and data. This is pretty bad from a cyber hacking point of view, but in the virtual world of avatars, taking on another’s identity becomes a very real issue. This artefact is difficult to penetrate in the virtual world as it only works in one direction. However, that means that somewhere, there is a dormant avatar frozen or in a resting pose.  Linking who controls the dormant avatar is key to stopping them causing any more damage.

Suffers Aged Fragmented
A being held together by stitches and string because he has aged so much. Could this be a lich who has used dark magics  and evil deeds to preserve his life, or is this being’s mind so bent on achieving an objective, that they live on beyond their body’s capabilities?

When he approaches the adventurers with a proposition, will they follow through not knowing if they are helping a desperate man or a necromancer? What quest does this aged being have in mind?

Laying Crop Pouch
This magic pouch is made of hemp, but woven into its fabric is nature’s magic constantly renewing the fabric so that it remains sturdy.  Not only that, if seeds are placed inside the pouch, within hours fully formed crops will have grown in their place.  Its size restricts the good it can do, but for a day’s rations or to preserve something small and precious, the Pouch of Crop Laying is a godsend.

Rolling Word Play – 40

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Wriggled Remembers Salvage, Slippery Dearly Muddle and Whisper Crafted Meatball.

Wriggled Remembers Salvage
Perhaps the strangest partnership in the known worlds if of Grelven and his wriggly, giant animal companion.  Grelven once rescued a giant purple worm as it was still growing from a mine cave-in. It had been abandoned by its mother, and grew attached to Grelven.  Since then, it has more than paid back the life debt it owed him.  They are inseparable and together they roam the plains and desert landscapes.  Their ability to dig up gold is unparalleled.

Slippery Dearly Muddle
A witch known of Geldred was once conned out of her finest potions when a knight said he would pay her handsomely for them.  He gave her fake coins however, worthless to anyone less naïve.  Furious, she gathered all the real gold coins she had and set a trap for the knight, planting the coins in various places in the forest and beside the bridal pathways.   She cursed each coin with a potent spell of her own, and was delighted when she spyed the knight picking one up and dying in the attempt.  The curse for the coins sends the creature that picks them up into the ground where a boggy, suffocating death awaits.  She decided to leave the other coins for others who might be as greedy and conniving as the knight was.

Whisper Crafted Meatball
Perhaps the most disturbing food on offer is the Whispering Meatballs of Mef. No-one but the chefs know how they are made or what they contain, but the original tale doesn’t inspire confidence.  Mef was a priest whose piety knew no bounds.  The story goes that he warned a greedy baron to share the crops of his land lest they go to waste.  When the baron continued to ignore his warnings, Mef confronted him and rather than imprisoning him or running him through, kept him alive as he crafted and skinned him into tiny pieces.  With these, he created a large pot of meatball stew, which he served to the villagers on the baron’s land.

Mef’s Whispering Meatballs are still served today in a few special locations. The meatballs seem to whisper incoherently as if talking with their last breath. Sometimes the diners swear they can hear what they are saying.  Are these creatures skinned alive by the cook, or a culinary trick using trapped air?  No-one knows for certain.

Rolling Word Play – 39

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Natives Renovating Blockages, Blackbird Colleague Apply and Swaps Resurfaced Speculative.

Natives Renovating Blockages
A Frogperson runs into the village seeking help from an unknown terror that lurks in the river.  It gets worse for the inhabitants of the village; upstream, the frogfolk have been decimated in recent wars with other tribes but also from a bestial threat that lurks in the waters.  They are unable to repair the vine walls that hold back the tide during the rainy seasons and these are about to begin.

A fun but dangerous adventure awaits.  One that would involve working with the Frogfolk, fighting a beast in flowing water whilst the rain lashes down from the sky.  What is the terror that the frogfolk are unable to identify or defeat?

Blackbird Colleague Apply
Not a person can forget the face of Evwin. The intelligence is keen, the sincerity good, the stature upright and yet for the citizens who saw Evwin, their brains could only compute ‘bird’.  And so it was that although he came from this kingdom, was raised in a village near here, he was considered an outsider. …This is where the story gets dark, for if they are unable to embrace Evwin as one of their own, he will turn against them.  Drow have not been seen on the surface for decades, but have already identified Evwin as not only intelligent but suitable spy material.  They have met a few times, and if unchecked, will lead the Drow to topple the rulers of the city.

Will the adventurers be able to read the signs of the upcoming war, and will Evwin be prevented from spilling any more intelligence to the Drow?

Swaps Resurfaced Speculative
Poor Dunfern.  This city has suffered much from shapeshifters and now secrecy and security are high.  There is talk that the shapeshifters have regrouped and are again plotting to take control of the office of power.  It got so bad last time that golums were bought at great expense to spot those who were disguised as another.  But automatons can only be looking in one place at a time and they can even be reprogrammed.  And so the office of power, headed by Chief Lioron is under high alert.

This is a perfect opportunity for adventurers to help prevent paranoia, or be the cause of it. Once checked by a golum to ensure they are not shapeshifting fiends, there will be shapeshifters to hunt and identities to protect.  Who will the shapeshifters be disguised as, and how far up the ladder of power have they got?  Or is the whole thing a lie; a scheme to instil fear and control over their subjects?

Rolling Word Play – 38

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Ringleader Vibrant Income, Negotiated Amended Hoaxes and Spaces Covenants Fences.

Ringleader Vibrant Income
The city of Ashent is a very complex hive of culture and squalor.  It contains more bards per square foot than any other city.  This means that a cheap evening’s entertainment is very easy to find, but that competition for gigs is fierce.  Many provide custom services on the side, including musical codes and signatures; there is a market for creating unique ditties on piccolos and recorders, but also enchanting items to play the tune at the owner’s request. This goes for all occupations including the seedier ones.  Entire roguish gangs operate using secret musical codes to avoid guards, signal which plan to use and to gain access to safehouses.  In the brothels it is said that the front of house will communicate prospective customers to the escorts as they walk by to gauge who will attempt a transaction.

Any adventurers in this neighbourhood will be sure to have a good time one way or the other. Will they cotton onto the musical tricks at play, or be caught with their pants down and lose their purses?

Negotiated Amended Hoaxes
A new art installation has arrived in the castle.  Incredible sculptures of exotic beasts, life-sized and made of fine materials such as jade, marble and glass. But one of the animals holds a secret: an enormous amount of gun powder that when triggered will blow the entire castle apart.  But the conspirators have lost heart in their rebellious scheme.  It appears they were overenthusiastic when dealing with dangerous criminals who refuse to back down.  Now there are not only guards to contend with, but rogues bent on hushing up anyone that attempts to spoil their plans.

The conspirators will be seeking help but are too afraid to turn to the authorities and reveal their dastardly plot.  The travelling adventurers are perfect for such a mission.  What were the conspirators hoping to achieve? What will the criminals attempt with such fire power? And what animal contains the explosives?

Spaces Covenants Fences
The farming community of Freedle is different from most rural dwellings.  The herbs grown are exotic, the drinks brewed are peculiar but refreshing.  Parties in the open fields often occur at night and cauldrons are allowed to simmer for much of the day.  This is because every household in Freedle is of witching stock.  Despite their reputations elsewhere, the community gets by fine and their proud shared heritage makes the community fiercely loyal to each other.  Wars come and go, but the village of Freedle goes on.  Sometimes they aid outsiders, but often they mind their own business, preferring the outside world to do the same for Freedle.

Are there any bad apples among the witches?  What brews, magical items or curses might adventurers pick up when passing through Freedle?

Rolling Word Play – 37

Creating Roleplay ideas based on randomly generated words.  Here’s today’s selection.  Discover more about Arrange Graver Clubs, Pest Dwell Simulation and Saturation Bobbing Caskets.

Arrange Graver Clubs
One of the strangest and most secretive places from those outside the city to encounter is the Mourners’ Foundation. This group is for the bereaved. It uses funds taken from widowers who are members of the Foundation to buy and run several buildings in the city. The group supports each other as best they can. Some of the buildings are dedicated to solemn contemplation, whilst others are much more of a society for those who are well adjusted to their new-found freedom.  The group is close and also contains its own secrets.

How might such a group affect the power within the city?  Would they deliberately target wealthy merchants and work on their partners to gain extra capital?  Do their members hold key information and have they attempted to communicate with the dead?

Pest Dwell Simulation
There are many situations where adventurers can make an impact but some are best to be avoided.  For example, the pest control drills of the Sewer Guards of Herembor.  The sewers below the city can be dreary, smelly places for much of the time, but the dark, gassy atmosphere can play on a person’s paranoia.  It’s true that smugglers sometimes use the passageways to get around, but it’s been a few decades since the last large beast was seen. Could it happen again?   The Sewer Guards’ solution is to create simulations in which guards dress up as giant rats and act aggressively whilst the other guards have to try and trap it as effectively as possible.

This drill isn’t designed with visitors in mind – how will the adventurers react to seeing giant rat things?  Will the guards be taken by surprise when they find armed humanoids rather than their colleague in a furry suit?

Saturation Bobbing Caskets
These magical caskets were said to be the invention of a renowned Cleric known as Monrey Yarroby who wanted to purify water.  To this effect he created a kind of purification system using magics that he was able to gather and channel into the material of the wooden caskets.  His experiments worked well, but he found that the saturating or purifying process needed water motion on the outside for it to mix properly and take effect.  Others after him found other uses.

The bobbing casket is 2 foot high by 1 foot wide and 1 foot deep.  It can transform an object placed within it when the closed casket is allowed to float on top of the water.  Most users use the rope on the casket lid to to tie it to something and  keep the casket from floating away.  The effect is that it attempts to saturate the object in some way.  Here are some results:

Roll 1d10 and have the DM decide two possible results and the odds for the likely and less likely results to occur.

  • Salt water = Likely becomes purified water.  Less likely, becomes salt.
  • Two objects = Likely becomes two separate objects.  Less likely, perfectly smooth single object.
  • Stone containing gems = Likely becomes normal rock.  Less likely, becomes pure crystal
  • Damaged manuscript = Likely is mended but without writing.  Less likely, restored with writing intact.