Posted tagged ‘heroes’

More Adventure Hooks!

October 18, 2009

Looking through my notes, I found a few that was cut from the Ugly Harpy pdf. Instead of just tossing them away, I’ve decided to post them here. Maybe there’s something you like.

Gossip

A merchant has arrived in Mor Aldenn with one of the western caravans.¬†No one has ever heard his name, and he is certainly willing to change that! Afterall, a good¬†reputation is important to any merchant! He is willing to pay the PCs to spread a few rumors around town. However, maybe the merchant isn’t who he says he is??

The Rivaling Inns

Yargus Tem is involved in a small feud with Otho Theobold of the Gloating Giant. So far this feud is merely one of words, but then one of Otho’s horses is slain… who did it? Otho seems to believe that it was Yargus, or at the very least, one of his henchmen!

With this hook, you could also involve the other inns! Imagine asking the moraldenns to choose sides based on their favorite inn! This could turn out to be something a lot like “Gangs of New York”, only call it “Gangs of Mor Aldenn”! ūüôā

The Poisoner

Jordrick Runsen, the local herbalist and poisoner is looking to acquire an assassin vine. Can the PCs help him?

Poison, anyone?

A strange tradition has come to the Ugly Harpy. The young and foolish challenge eachother to drink various poisons, all supplied (of course) by the local poisoner, Jordrick Runsen. This seems like a really stupid game, but maybe it could also be a lot of fun…

 

Does anyone have other adventure hooks that they’d like to share? If so, I’d love to hear them!

Races of Mor Aldenn

May 1, 2009

Mor Aldenn devides is populace evenly between humans and elves, which means that you’ll also find quite a few half-elves here as well. However, humans and elves are not the only inhabitants; you’ll find halflings, gnomes, dwarves, centaurs and¬†kobolds living here as well.

Centaurs

The horsemen made peace with the mages more than 200 years ago and came to settle on the island in the place that is now called the Horse Downs. One would think that the centaurs thought this name a mockery of their nature, but no, they seem to fully accept and cherish the name. They live in huge tents in small families.

Dwarves

Dwarves are not known for their love of magic, but the dwarven families living in Mor Aldenn have actually come to study the arcane arts however unlikely that may sound.

Elves

The elves have a long history in Mor Aldenn, dating back to the first travellers who passed through this region. They came originally from Ossindil, to study with the human wizards, but have since then settled down and created a history of their own. They consider themselves moraldenns the same as the humans.

Gnomes

You wont find a lot of gnomes in Mor Aldenn, but they do exist. They view magic a little differently than the human and elven mages. You should seek out the Tower of Illusion if you wish to talk to a gnome.

Half-elves

It is no disgrace to have the blood of both humans and elves in your veins, in fact, for some its considered a blessing; the best of both races. Half-elves from other parts of the world consider Mor Aldenn a sanctuary, a place where they are fully accepted. You wont ever find a person in Mor Aldenn who would dare mock a half-elf, but you will find lots who would defend one.

Halflings

The small folk have also found a home amongst the mages. They love the surrounding lands, and treasure the beauty that surrounds them. They are often found amongst the craftsmen of the city.

Humans

Like the elves, humans have lived in Mor Aldenn ever since its founding more than 300 years ago. They are found in all layers of the society, also, the current mayor of Mor Aldenn is a human named Oswin Theodorick.

Kobolds

Kobolds have actually been accepted as part of the population. They are as peaceful as the other races and will raise the spears in defence of the city, should it ever need it. However, there are some who fear that the kobolds will turn upon the city, revealing their alliance with the night hag, but they haven’t thus far.

A Trail of Poison – Part II

April 27, 2009

Continuing the write-up of the adventures of Mor Aldenn, I’ve come to writing the background story. I consider this training and much will definitely change before the final adventure is “published”.

 

A Trail of Poison (a Mor Aldenn adventure)

Adventure Background

For 300 years, the city of Mor Aldenn have been at war with the night hag of the Spindlewood Marsh. She is a strong archenemy and with each defeat, the vicious night mistress has grown ever more hateful of the mages and their city. How the night hag has survived these countless wars, remains a mystery even to this day, but she seem to finally understand that to destroy the mages of Mor Aldenn, she must first weaken them.

After months of peace, the night hag finally shows her face. A hag in her coven has discovered a long lost tower deep within the treacherous Spindlewood. At the heart of the forgotten tower, she has also found a powerful artifact that has the power to attract the animals of the forest. With this artifact, the night hag hopes to strike at the mages.

That the mages use the magic of the surrounding lands, is a well-known fact. They find magic, not only in the trees, plants, lakes, rivers and the earth, but also in the animals that make Ossindrillon their home. To strike at these animals would indeed pose a severe threat to the mages.

The forgotten tower lies by a shadowy lake; a lake of poisoned water. This poison eats away at the very soul of those who drink it. Now the night hag uses the artifact to call out to the magical beasts. She forces them to come to the shadow lake and drink its poison, and while most of the beasts die by the lake, some are strong enough to escape into the Spindlewood. But their fate is sealed, no one survives the poison, not even the fabled unicorn.

#2 Adventure: Thieves in the Barrowdelve

April 26, 2009

Illus. William McAuslandHere is another synopsis based on another of my original ideas, the heirloom in the Barrowdelve. It has been retitled, to focus more on the actual theft and those behind it, than on the heirloom itself. The secret of the heirloom is only revealed later on in the adventure and may indeed lead to an even greater adventure.

 

Thieves in the Barrowdelve (a Mor Aldenn adventure)

Thieves are looting the Barrowdelve! A young thief is found dead outside his home, wearing an old magical pendant from the Delve, but who killed the thief? And like that wasn’t bad enough, the pendant seems to hide a secret far worse, a secret hidden deep within the Barrowdelve, a secret that has now been revealed.

Thieves in the Barrowdelve is a Pathfinder RPG adventure designed for four 1st-level characters. The adventure takes place in Mor Aldenn, the City of Mages. This small city could in reality be located in any setting where two rivers converge inside an ancient forest.

Adventure Synopsis

This adventure starts as an heirloom turns up on the body of a dead thief. The heirloom, a seemingly magical pendant, was buried deep within the Barrowdelve and now the people of Mor Aldenn is wondering; is someone looting the ancient necropolis?

The mayor asks the PCs to investigate the matter, both the looting of the Delve and the strange murder. He is willing, of course, to pay them for their services to the city. They are given access to the Barrowdelve, where they discover that other graves have been robbed, but by whom? Was it the young thief wearing the pendant, or was it perhaps someone else?

The PCs also¬†discover that the pendant hides a secret, a cursed ring hidden within the pendant. This ring is what killed the thief, and it may in fact kill others if the PCs don’t find a way to stop it.

The trail also leads the PCs to the Tower of All-Magic, where they find¬†the thief’s brother, a young ambitious¬†mage. He is the true mastermind behind the plan to loot the Barrowdelve and will not give up without a fight, also, it seems that he has hidden the loot, but where?

 

Designer’s Notes

When I started thinking about writing this synopsis, this adventure truly opened up for me. I didn’t want the thieves to be involved with Yargus Tem and the Thieves Guild, no, those guys are way too likable and shouldn’t become direct antagonists of the PCs, so I wanted thieves a little different. I started thinking…who would have access to the Barrowdelve and how? One of the mages, of course, a really ambitious one, but he wouldn’t be working alone, no…he had a brother, of course! A young and foolish thief.

I imagined how they had done it, how research had led to all these secrets hidden inside the necropolis, but what about the pendant and the cursed ring? You see, the mage knew about its nature (or guessed, at least) and so asked his brother NOT to take it… but that was indeed a mistake, after a few planned raids into the Barrowdelve, the young thief decided to make a little raid of his own, stealing the pendant for himself, but that was a mistake! A mistake he would pay dearly for and that would start this adventure…

The First Adventure…

April 22, 2009

Which of the following ideas would you like to see developed into the very first adventure of Mor Aldenn?

 

The Heirloom from the Delve

One day, an¬†heirloom turns up in Mor Aldenn, seemingly by accident. It was supposed to be buried deep within the Barrowdelve, but is someone looting the necropolis of the city of mages? And like that wasn’t bad enough… this heirloom¬†appears to be¬†cursed!

 

The Spy

An old and weak woman dies one day, a brutal death by the hands of some vicious and unknown¬†creature. The necromancers of the Shadow Tower bring back her soul briefly, to ask her a few questions. It seems that she know the identity of one of the night hag’s many¬†spies… but when she tries to utter the name, the spell is broken! Can the PCs find the murderous¬†creature and possibly…the spy?

 

The Strange Death

A local druid returns to Mor Aldenn, bearing terrible news. He has found several magical beasts in the surrounding forest, dead. It appears that they have been somehow… poisoned! When the PCs investigate the poisonous trail, they find a dying unicorn who knows some of the truth, but before the creature can tell them everything it knows,¬†they are attacked by the cruel minions of the night hag…

 

Luck in the Woods

A wizard from the Tower of All-Magic needs the PCs to catch a blink dog. They are (under no circumstances!) to kill the beast or make it suffer, he wants it (mostly)¬†unharmed and alive. However, while looking for this beast in the forest, the PCs come across a group of half-elves and human rogues who catch (dead or alive) magical beasts! The small group hope to sell the beasts to a nameless buyer in one of the western settlements… but will the PCs allow this?

 

The Theft

Something is stolen from the PCs, an item of value and importance. A little investigation leads to… nothing. However, a few days later, the PCs learn from a shadow in the night, that a caravan is transporting stolen goods south. Will the PCs be able to track down the caravan, find the thieves and perhaps learn the identity of their shadow ally? In fact, if the PCs play their cards right, they may uncover a whole organization of thieves…

 

The Demon’s Cult

An imp, a prophet who¬†has terrible nightmares, a Fallen tower,¬†a young cult and the deomn they worships and who wish to be free of its prison. Will the PCs be able to hunt down the cultists, stop their scheme and perhaps learn secrets of the Fallen Tower’s single inhabitant… or will¬†the cultists unleash a fury upon the city unlike any Mor Aldenn has ever seen?¬†

 

Remember that these are just ideas, and will definitely change (somewhat) before the adventure is finished!

Adventure!

March 29, 2009
A Wraith in the Barrowdelve

A Wraith in the Barrowdelve

Without adventure, a setting is nothing. Players make adventurers and heroes, and these need places to explore, monsters to fight and mysteries to solve.

So what places, monsters and mysteries does Mor Aldenn offer a group of adventurers?

 

The Curse of the Night Hag 

Low to high-level characters

Something is making the dead walk the streets of Mor Aldenn. Moraldenns have named this new threat the Curse of the Night Hag, but its really not a curse at all, but a powerful artifact that is making the dead restless. It is, however, the night hag who is behind the artifact.

Low-level PCs may find themselves invited to the Mage Guild where they are hired to patrol the streets at night. The Barrowdelve Gate has been magically sealed, but some undead still find their way into the streets at night, a mystery the mages have yet to solve.

Mid-level PCs are hired to enter the Barrowdelve and retrieve certain items. The moraldenns fear that the undead will destroy their memories hidden within the Barrowdelve and seek the PCs to retrieve them before this happens. The mages will open the gate during the day, but from there on the PCs will be on their own.

High-level PCs will be asked to find the source of the curse. They are asked to go to deep into the Barrowdelve, where they will fight very powerful undead. When they find the artifact, they will need to destroy it (quickly) or become undead themselves.

 

The Night Hag

Low to high-level characters

The night hag of the Spindlewood Marshes has risen again. Her coven has regained its strength and she is amassing a great army to the west of Mor Aldenn.

Among her army is lizardfolk, kobolds, giants, human brigands and, of course, other hags (mostly green hags). They are not all found in the marshes, but patrol the surrounding forest, striking out against travellers, merchants and the small villages.

Low-level PCs are hired as guards or even guides. A merchant needs to travel to a small village to the west and fears brigands and kobolds. A rich innkeeper must visit his dying mother and needs guards to keep him safe. Maybe the Mage Guild hires them to kill kobolds and lizardfolk, or perhaps a mage hires them to capture an ettercap.

Mid-level PCs¬†are hired to kill hill giants, especially the infamous¬†tribe that¬†terrorizes the forest east of Mor Aldenn, making the road to Ossindil dangerous. They may also be hired to find the night hag’s spies (see Nolly Ravenheart).

High-level PCs are strong enough to make the journey into the dreadful Spindlewood Marshes where they must fight the night hag herself. Elven mages are also interested in finding an ancient (now lost) elven city within the marsh, and perhaps they hire the PCs to seek it out and retrieve some of its many secrets.

 

The Demon Tower

Mid to high-level characters

 The Fallen Tower has been abandoned for decades and the mages have tried to kill the demon many times, failing each time. Perhaps the PCs will succeed, retrieving ancient secrets of summoning and conjuration. The Mage Guild will pay them greatly if they succeed.

Art by Gary Dupuis (www.gdupuis.com)

Another history lesson…

March 23, 2009

Taraathalorm Wyrmmother

Long before the founding of Mor Aldenn, nearly 350 years ago, a green dragon named Taraathalorm settled on the big island. It had managed to escape its mortal enemies of the east, the elves of faraway Ossindil. Under different circumstances, the dragon may have stayed to fight, but this particular dragon had a belly full of eggs and needed somewhere safe to make a nest. This is exactly what it found here at the heart of Ossindrillon, or so Taraathalorm thought.

The eggs hatched and for a time the island was swarming with green wyrmlings. They may well have destroyed the last remnants of the tower that stood on the hill, scattering the memories of a lost era.

Taraathalorm would leave the nest and bring back food for her young, often staying away for weeks. Some believe that the Horse Downs is actually named after the horse bones that the first settlers found beneath the hill, but this may not be the entire truth.

Five years after Taraathalorm hatched her young wyrmlings, a group of human travellers discover the nest. The largest and most powerful of the wyrmlings is brutally slain, but the humans manage to bring the rest of the wyrmlings with them to Ossindil where they sell them to the elven wizards.

When Taraathalorm finally returns, she is enraged to find one of her wyrmlings murdered and the rest stolen. She smells humans, but suspect that the elves are behind the theft, especially since the trail leads directly towards Ossindil. She sends her minions against the elven city, who successfully destroys a few villages and towns on their way to the elven capital. However, in the end, the army is scattered by the elves who wields some of the strongest magic in the world. A few minions return to Taraathalorm bearing the bad news. She is enraged and filled with an even stronger hate than before. But with her army scattered she cannot strike at the elves.

A group of humans and elves from Ossindrillon travels to the island where Taraathalorm resides. They attack during the night and successfully slay the green dragon. The heroes bring back a dragonstone, taken from the chest of Taraathalorm, as proof of their deed. This famous dragonstone is later named the Emerald Heart and is, to this day, still in the elves possession.

The small group search the island and finds remnants of a lost age, but more importantly, they also find a place of strong magic. There is something hidden, deep below the island, which makes this place the perfect home of wizards, sorcerers and bards.

Designer’s Notes

There is, indeed, something hidden deep below Mor Aldenn, but so far, the mages have not managed to find the source of this magic. They do, however, suspect that it is not by accident that the magic is strong here and have delved deep. This dungeon that the mages have carved from the earth can be accessed through the Barrow delve, but also through the Tower of All-Magic. In fact, most of the mage towers have a portal that takes the mages into the deep reaches.

This place may be Dragon’s Delve… or perhaps, some other ancient dungeon.