Thursday, May 31, 2012

Apocalyptic Visions in the Crystal Ball

1. Nightmare scene of fantasy world completely overrun by proliferation of slimes, oozes and jellies
2. Images of sudden-onset ice age, flash-frozen men and beasts, ships embedded in solid waves, ice-spirits howling w/bitter laughter
3. Idyllic pastoral scene shattered by revelation that herdsmen = vampires, flocks = debased human population
4. Video broadcast from Mars rover w/incomprehensible voice-over
5. Scene of moon teeming with terror monsters hurling selves earthward via cosmic trebuchets
6. Mind-bending loop of footage from Leni Riefenstahl's Triumph of the Will
7. Behind-the-scenes at the trans-pantheon parliament of the gods: earthly life pitilessly divided up and squandered like chattel by beings previously thought to be benevolent
8. Worlds upon worlds swim by, each stranger than the last, a galactic empire that pits far-flung humankind against itself while utterly alien overlords grow ever richer and more powerful
9. Promotional clips of reality TV show shot during biblical end times
10. Humanity enslaved by race of giants w/proto-Egyptian cultural features, set to perpetual pyramid-building
11. Towering gods stride the earth locked in battle, sweeping away entire human armies with single gestures, shattering mountains with errant blows, boiling oceans away with misfired rays of destruction
12. Sorcerer's mad researches set off arcane chain reaction resulting in world sundered in two, separated by coruscating ethereal gulf

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

In the Philosopher's Spell Book

1. Alter Opinion: instantly harmonizes disparate views or insinuates disagreement
2. Dispel Argument: renders opposing assertion null and void
3. Arinunio's Inconspicuous Non Sequitur: success allows the user to sneak one by opposition
4. Bolt of Enlightenment: save or stagger off to reexamine life
5. Huunenaur's Stinging Refutation: no saving throw
6. Inescapable Web of Absurdity: save or suffer debilitating mental entanglement
7. Hargoov's Hair-splitter: Stupefies opponent with barrage of meaningless objections
8. Exploding Straw Man: save for half damage
9. Glamocles' Expeditious Reductio ad Absurdum: success induces shame, humiliation and the derision of one's peers
10. Defang Ideology: deactivates critical faculties in subjects, primes them to swallow bill of goods
11. Mass Consensus: gallon of wine per subject required as material component
12. Create Truth: adds single new aspect to reality, fundamentally changing the universe for good or ill, rarely successfully cast, miscast erases all trace of the philosopher from the space-time continuum

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Whence the Demigod?

1. Mighty Sky-father digs mortals
2. Lord of Speedy Delivery expanding operations
3. Super-genius god of intellect conducting "experiments"
4. Monkey Czar up to his usual shenanigans
5. All-mother has a thing for eugenics
6. Rogue ex-member of the pantheon aiming to breed god-assassins
7. Star Bull remains irrepressible in this area
8. Fire god looking to create flame-cloaked half-mortal priesthood
9. Personification of mostly-impersonal Prime Mover on some kind of strange bender
10. Incomprehensible entity masquerading as the popular war god, all about more and better warriors
11. Perpetually famished outer being using mortals to give itself spiritual access to as many additional mouths as possible
12. Raw Chaos seethes mindlessly but also enjoys the odd fling here and there

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Super-quick Gonzo Pulp Monster Generator

Roll on each of the three tables below and put results in the blender. Extrapolate swiftly, your players are waiting.

Table A: Descriptor
1. Abominable
2. Colossal
3. Scintillating
4. Iron
5. Sundering
6. Mind
7. Lava
8. Laser
9. Trans-dimensional
10. Insalubrious
11. Hypno-
12. Chaos

Table B: Subject
1. Fungus
2. Jelly
3. Corpse
4. Slug
5. Foetus
6. Bishop
7. Lizard
8. Worm
9. Tyrant
10. Polyp
11. Virus
12. Titan

Table C: Special
1. Like the shrew, must eat several times own body weight daily to survive
2. Maximum fecundity: dropping eggs/buds/spores/litters/viral loads everywhere
3. Berserk at all times, but capable of taking it to a new level if pressed
4. Singular objective: depopulation
5. Genius-level intellect, telepathic, strong opinions, very convincing
6. Melancholic: hell-bent on suicide-by-adventurers
7. Reverts back to shape of missing princess when killed
8. Constantly sings/otherwise emits mind-bending music
9. Protected by chitinous armor plating
10. Exudes deadly/blinding/incapacitating/intoxicating/flammable gases
11. Self-luminous
12. Demi-material, may pass through solid matter

Friday, May 25, 2012

Pithy Dying Utterances: The Fighter

1. "My labors are at an end now. Farewell! Oh, by the way, I buried a good deal of treasure near the...UURRK."
2. "Alas, I am killed! But I now swear by the dark gods of uttermost night, my shade shall harry our foes forever."
3. "Patron deity/celestial realm, I am coming!"
4. "Behold, it is my end. But do me one final service. Take my most awesome weapon and cast it into the  body of water/lava where it shall never be dishonored."
5. "And so! It is bitter. Never again shall I slay and plunder..."
6. "I die. But why? Why was it not irritating party member?"
7. "My only regret is that I have but one life to give for my party."
8. "It is a fitting end for such as I. Live by sword, die by the whatever killed him"
9. "I am finished. Only time now for one final war-shriek of defiance...GLLAAIIIIEEEEEE!!!"
10. "No, not now! Not when there is so much more gold to hoard, so many wineskins to drain, so many dark halls to plunder, so many . . ."
11. "Which one of you devils was supposed to pack the extra healing potion? Ha ha *choke*"
12. "It was my honor to storm the gates of hell with you lot. Well, except for irritating party member, who is a complete bastard."

Thursday, May 24, 2012


1. Bleat of alarmed ungulate
2. Basso warble of some massive unknown songbird
3. Ululation: exceedingly moist, possibly of amphibious origin
4. Rumble of a seismic nature: retainers may be rattled, esp. if expected to go underground
5. Weird shriek of a primate: could be a human or man-ape, too peculiar to say for sure
6. Gallop as of many unshod hooves
7. Colossal footfall, seems to be moving off
8. Clamor: the clash of arms, or maybe just pots and pans
9. Din: a swarm of giant bugs or maybe a giants mill wheel, hard to say
10. Subterranean blast, first of a series (see entry 4)
11. Cracking timbers off in the distance, as if a colossus were gathering firewood
12. Eerie music (see subtable)

Eerie Music Subtable
1-2. Meandering noodlings of Elven jam band
3-4. Vaguely menacing halfling ditty, of a darker cast than usual
5-6. Pixie choir: like 1000 cartoon chipmunks (save vs. killing pixies required)
7-8. Devotionals of evil
9-10. Atonal troll yarping
11-12. Cacophonous ogre drum circle

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Enemies of the City-state Currently at Large

1. Seditious army commander: escaped execution in hail of fireballs and lightning, believed harbored by sketchiest cabal of sorcerers near city
2. Plutocrats displaced by tyrannical usurper: gaining traction among those who yearn for the ol' time  oppression they were used to, raising secret armies for planned insurrection
3. Charlatan suicide cult guru: rises in popularity as local economic hardship mounts, spellbinding oratory argues for sacrifice of earthly goods (to be disposed of by temple), public displays of self-annihilation
4. Remnants of not-quite-wiped-out indigenous peoples, driven by fatalistic mores, defiantly throw their lives away in acts of senseless destruction
5. Authorities suspect former court vizier (disappeared after failed coup attempt) hidden by retired member of adventuring party, four of whom maintain residences in the city-state
6. Presumed madman dubbed "The Midnight Dentist" harvests teeth of the noblesse for an unknown arcane purpose
7. Visiting woolly neanderthal dignitary killed aristocrat over insult, now roams the streets in berserk frenzy, a host of guardsmen unable to bring him in
8. Barely perceptible demi-material monstrosity from another sphere breaks out of royal menagerie in bloodbath, linked to certain scrolls now missing from royal library
9. Beloved monarch revealed as animate mummy of pre-cataclysmic age: brought down entire wing of palace upon self and accusers, body never recovered
10. Redmask, populist agitator and author of absurd treatises re: "The Rights of Man", eludes capture, may in fact be several individuals
11. Ambassador from formerly secret subterranean kingdom: walked out of talks with human leadership in disgust, publicly declared human surface hegemony officially at an end, disappeared into newly formed sinkhole, populace descending into paranoid freak-out
12. Roll again but this time assume the result is a totally fictitious red herring designed to keep the people in fear and ready to swallow any nonsense their betters wish to foist upon them while simultaneously occupying any wandering armed miscreants in the area with wild goose chases.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Campaign Elevator Pitch Amalgamator

Roll once on each table and forcefully mash results together to establish campaign vibe.

Table A: Appendix N
1. Robert E. Howard's Kull stories: serpent men intrigue, campaign-ending catastrophe imminent
2. Tolkien's LOTR: sprawling epic, dark lord, orcs everywhere, spontaneous recitations of poetry/musical numbers
3. Poul Anderson's The High Crusade: knights & UFOs
4. Abraham Merritt's The Ship of Ishtar: active deities, genders at odds, swashbucklery
5. Leigh Brackett's The Sword of Rhiannon: Mars, science & sorcery, demi-god possession, exit future for adventure in the past
6. E.R. Burroughs' Pellucidar series: recently discovered underworld filled w/cavemen and their dino-rulers
7. H. P. Lovecraft's The Shadow Out of Time: Mind-projecting aliens, flying polyps, time-hopping
8. Jack Vance's Planet of Adventure series: powerful aliens in charge, humans reduced to pathetic state, must find or create means to get off planet ASAP
9. Michael Moorcock's Elric saga: doomy as hell, chaos horror, pain in the ass gods, bitter ends for one and all
10. Lord Dunsany's Time and the Gods: King James-style language, pervasive mythological underpinnings
11. Fritz Leiber's Newhon series: sorcerous masters, Lords of Quarmal, lusty
12. L. Sprague de Camp & Fletcher Pratt's Harold Shea series: magic is mathematics, dweebs from 20th century earth kick ass in realms of fantasy

Table B: Pop Culture X Factor
1. William Burroughs Naked Lunch: Interzone, disturbing creatures spewing hallucinogenic ichor
2. Christopher Hitchens: anti-crusade vs. theocracy, plenty of super-heated rhetoric
3. The Smurfs: towering evil sorcerers and their terrifying familiars, mushroom town HQ
4. Phillip K. Dick: does the dungeon exist outside of your minds? = sanity house rules required
5. Dr. Seuss: cutesy-pie nomenclature, capricious entities w/powers beyond mortal ken
6. Friedrich Nietzsche: gods are dead, class/level system ideal for tracking progress towards super-man status
7. John Carpenter's They Live: must wrassle henchmen/hirelings into submission, aliens among us
8. Herman Melville's Moby Dick: giant white monster object of obsession, but 'tis the thing behind the mask PCs chiefly hate
9. Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: original gonzo
10. Tim Burton's oeuvre: simultaneously creepy and goofy, Johnny Depp portrays most NPCs
11. King Kong (1933): Giant apes lord it over the dinosaurs/terrified human population, huge walls everywhere
12. DC Comics' The Legion of Super-Heroes: everybody gets at least one super-power, but it might be absurd

Examples of use:
1. Rolls: 2, 11  
Results: King Kong is dark lord of middle earth, climbs to the top of Barad Dur if seriously demoralized, armies of dino-riding orcs, hobbits = cavemen

2. Rolls: 1, 6
Results: Oops, you've just created the John Milius Conan the Barbarian movie, outrageous Austrian accents, nihilism, raise dead spells work but friends of the deceased must battle wind demons

Sunday, May 20, 2012

How the Gang got Together

1. Inflicted upon one another by multidisciplinary team of deities w/unknown agenda
2. Sudden trans-dimensional breach deposits all on campaign world of referee's choice
3. Met in queue for adventuring permits
4. Brought in separately by constabulary for variety of petty charges
5. At prominent aristocrat's ball: some as guests, others as the help and/or for larcenous purposes
6. Felicitous meeting after surviving (super-) natural disaster
7. Newly instituted draft by local regent requiring mandatory registration of all able bodied adults, leaving future party members sequestered w/other "suspicious persons"
8. Rounded up together in raid of den of ill-repute
9. Party arranged by cabal of power hungry sorcerers looking to acquire specific antiquities
10. Various misfortunes land nascent adventurers in stint as galley slaves
11. In the belly of titanic monster on inter-planar binge-and-purge bender
12. Collectively signed up for valueless adventuring class given by crew of doddering "old masters" as scheme to shore up dwindling retirement funds

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Pricey Merchandise at the Wilderness Outfitters

1. Owlbear taxidermy (one available): awesome pose, a bit of mange
2. Tinted smoke powder for long-distance signalling: 1d4 colors available
3. Troll call: flugelhorn-like instrument guaranteed to attract/distract bull trolls, rather a steep learning curve
4. Bottled hill giant urine: repels many animals/monsters
5. Mountaineering boots w/toe-activated retractable claw mechanism
6. Gold-sniffing weasel: will make bee-line for nearest concentration of gold when released
7. Giant spider silk rope: adheres to most surfaces, oil-treated gloves included
8. Torches infused w/a variety of fragrant essences
9. Dehydrated homonculi: release form required for purchase
10. Master trained monster-detecting falcon: 1 in 6 chance of betraying new owners (flying off, leading in predators, etc.)
11. Lantern filled w/bioluminescent fluid harvested from living giant glow worm, shake to activate, lasts 2d4 hours
12. Domesticated pork-fed troll fatback: a perpetual food source if byzantine directions followed to the letter, saving throw required on initial consumption

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Also In Residence at the Inn

1. Imperial courier w/message for gone-missing noble, now afraid to report back to dark masters
2. Petty noble and retainers taking a few days off from lengthy sojourn, reserved entire wing of the establishment, planning extensive revelry
3. Impressively outfitted knight and single squire patiently await sign from the gods before making next move
4. Foreign sage and indentured crew of grad students embarking upon expedition to excavate site of lost temple
5. Sculptor flush with cash from major commision seeking rare minerals to complete pièce de résistance
6. Cult priest travelling w/squad of deadly acolytes, mummified heart and brain of ancient prophet
7. Ancient wizard, having mainlined the last of his potions of longevity to no effect, lies in deathbed slowly snuffing it
8. Temporarily rich thief living large while laying low, sloppy w/drunken braggadocio
9. Silverware salesman who the proprietor suspects may secretly be an imperial inn inspector
10. Permanent resident: venerable retired explorer and cartographer, happy to discuss and show off (but never ever sell) the fruits of his labors
11. Gentleman awaits arrival of distant rival to settle long-delayed matter of honor
12. Idle aristocrats slumming it: participants in an evening of fancy-dress games

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Lich's Secret Identity

1. Filthy street urchin w/unsettling stare
2. Continuously drunken petty noble w/penchant for provoking peers
3. Kindly hedge wizard, always offering to aid and advise fledgling adventurers
4. Travelling minstrel who ruthlessly satirizes the powers-that-be
5. The mysterious "druid" seen stalking the king's forest
6. Mild-mannered yeoman farmer who recently inherited ancient farmhouse
7. Court torturer: famous throughout the land for extracting secrets w/100% accuracy
8. Perpetually masked guild master of assassins
9. Foppish dandy said to be extraordinarily successful philanderer
10. Extremely helpful librarian at the Royal Scroll & Tome Repository
11. Preternaturally attractive young aristocrat looking for marital prospects
12. Foreign dignitary representing largely unknown empire from somewhere beyond the edge of the campaign map

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

This Monster's Got a Charming Side

1. Anomalous yet beautiful singing voice
2. Has overlarge, plaintive child-like eyes
3. Inordinately protective of underlings/henchmonsters
4. Extremely polite and respectful, conducts itself w/the utmost honor before and after devouring adventurers
5. Lovingly raising brood of monsterlings
6. Has somehow amassed a rather impressive fine art collection
7. Cuddly, affectionate, dog-like relationship w/dark master
8. Has taken the time to carefully decorate lair according to its incomprehensible tastes
9. A certain indefinable je ne sais quoi
10. Exhibits gentle curiosity toward small animals, halflings
11. Has a pet that it cherishes (see Unusual Dungeon Pets table)
12. Accepts nothing short of unconditional surrender but will listen thoughtfully and appear to entertain terms before rejecting them utterly

Monday, May 14, 2012

Now Occupying the Recently Depopulated Dungeon Area

1. Giant tarantula has the place completely enveloped in webs, deposited egg sack and scampered off before the cannibalistic little buggers hatch
2. Massive bioluminescent fungal bloom of every hue speeds decomposition of deceased former denizens, continuously launching a noxious miasma of spores
3. Cube jelly has oozed through the wall, now making a clean sweep of things
4. Battered bandit leader and remaining body guards in retreat from superior forces, looking to hole up and lick their wounds
5. Hiding under whatever debris/corpses might be available, an escaped prisoner/hostage
6. Owlbear meticulously grooming itself after run-in with acid pudding (absorbed in its work and easily surprised), telegraphed by strong stench of partially digested fur
7. Flock of land vultures doing what they do best
8. A pack of humanoid deserters in hiding from their dark masters and not averse to temporary alliances
9. Frustrated lesser vampire displaced from lair, seeking the perfect spot for a crypt-away-from-home
10. Swarm of hideous dungeon fairies busily constructing a new hive out of chewed bones and saliva
11. Party of adventurers taking a break, busting out rations, draining wineskins, arguing over map, cleric removing spear from dwarf, barbarian loudly expressing his trust issues re: the wizard
12. Thousands upon thousands of flies

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Distinguishing Characteristics of the Demigod

1. Walks an inch off the ground
2. Surrounded by scintillant halo effect
3. Reflection (in mirror, pool etc.) reveals only the divine portion
4. Eyes fluctuate in appearance: human, reptilian, multifaceted bug eyes, etc.
5. Turf smolders slightly under feet
6. Attracts swarms of insects, birds, assorted fauna
7. Voice has peculiar quality of subtle auto-tune effect
8. Sketchy movement, as if on film with random frames edited out
9. Exhales smoke
10. Appearances generally accompanied by thunderclap/atmospheric effect
11. Hair waves about as if tossed by wind, omnipresent glamour lighting
12. Open disdain for mortal inferiors

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Antediluvian Relics

1. Golden bat ears: self-adhere to sides of head for sensory enhancement
2. Spool of smart wire: slithers off to fulfill verbal work orders
3. Headband of enslavement: available in many fashionable styles and colors
4. Dagger of slicing: cuts stone, steel, tin cans and tomatoes without ever losing its edge, ignores armor
5. Omniscient sphere: palm sized orb w/ ranging sensor array, answers yes/no questions, 75% accuracy for duration of charge
6. Depilatory ray gun: no save!
7. Ornately pronged helmet with huge crystalline third eye: enables two-way telepathy, long distance mental intrusions, command sub-intellectual creatures like most arthropods, insects, reptiles
8. Stun hammer: deafens and/or stuns those w/unprotected ears in 40' radius when struck
9. Automatic chow dispenser unit: self-sustaining bacterial colony continuously produces fully nutritive human food nuggets for one (1 in 6 chance of anaphylactic shock on first usage)
10. Industrial prosthetic harness: needles penetrate wearer's spine, twin mechanical arms respond to mental commands after short learning curve (1 in 6 chance of going berserk and attacking user)
11. Psychiatric gun: launches med-grenades that involuntarily pacify, stabilize, trigger tear-soaked breakthroughs, may induce psychosis in some subjects
12. Disintegrator/reintegrator cannon: huge wheeled device stores dematerialized creatures and objects for later deployment (or permanent deletion)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dungeon Kickstarters

1. Squad of freelance ogre mercenaries looking to go upscale: need custom armor and equipment of highest quality, gigs already lined up, a sure thing
2. Evil high priest seeks aid to establish unholy gambling operation: security paramount, offers up to 5% of net in perpetuity for major backers
3. Vampire archaeologist, having obtained and translated ancient bas relief map, needs to hire contractors and obtain large slave force to excavate buried vault laden with treasures, shares available
4. Hopeful entrepreneur and fully qualified troll chef have found perfect location on level four for monster saloon/eatery, under capitalized and looking for partners
5. Ambitious clan of kobolds looking to set up currency exchange/loan establishment: offer females and children as collateral for start-up loans
6. Sorcerer and master assassin associate need coin for spell research/components to make their magic-assisted murder scheme really pay off
7. Deep dwarf team has laid diplomatic groundwork for construction of dungeon water and sewer system, a sound long-term investment opportunity
8. Bribe money needed to gain access to contested area of ruined subterranean city: newly discovered sub-section expected to yield copious golden treasures
9. Cure for dungeon plague discovered by consortium of sorcerers eager to blackmail disparate factions, need funds to produce samples, delivery system
10. Dungeon escort service w/sterling reputation in temporary cash-flow situation: small amount to tide them over shall be repaid three-fold
11. Talented evil armorer looking to establish shop: offers gratis enchanted arms and armor to investors
12. Mad but brilliant wizard anxious to publish and distribute grimoire of astonishing new spells, but will not unless aesthetic requirements are met: gold inlays, exotic inks, intricately embossed man-leather covers, etc.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Dragon's Formerly Secret Weakness

1. Due to upper respiratory fungal infection breath weapon subject to 50% failure
2. Such a megalomaniacal ass all henchmen and servitors actively plotting coup d'etat
3. Heavy opiate habit after accidentally eating heavily-laden dealer: intense lassitude, skewed priorities
4. Inflamed intestinal blockage from hastily devoured iron-clad warrior: constitutionally compromised
5. Anger management issue: easily provoked into blind rage featuring total loss of reason
6. Quite insane, unpredictable but somewhat suggestible
7. Allergic to fresh cut grasses: exposure induces convulsive sneezes, reduces vision
8. Devoted to fine brandy by the cask, commisioned giant snifter, frequently loaded
9. Actually quite fond of humans: a scholarly authority on the subject eager to test pet theories, readily charmed
10. Severely infected fang: claw, claw, no bite
11. Arrow shaft barely protruding from difficult-to-reach spot on back: an inch away from spine
12. A terror back in the day, now frail with immeasurable age, flames diminished, passions forgotten, stiff w/arthritis, scales dropping off, a shadow of former self

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

What the Wizard Actually has Up his Sleeve

1. Viper familiar coiled around wrist
2. The ol' endless stream of brightly-colored handkerchiefs for the amazement of the witless
3. Smoke bombs to obscure hasty retreats
4. Satchel of gold-painted lead coins for scattering on floors to give pause to impoverished attackers
5. Emergency scroll of invisibility (or whatever other spell of aid to personal safety might be available)
6. Breakable packet of irritating powder
7. Nothing but a tasteful dab of eau de cologne
8. In case of amnesia/brain erasure: trigger words cunningly worked in to seemingly decorative tattoo
9.  Extremely humble extra dagger in forearm sheath, sentimental relic of initial equipment purchase
10. Secret stash of healing potion for one
11. Live doves for wowing the easily astonished
12. Flask of hooch

Monday, May 7, 2012

Lesser Known Pocket Universes

1. The Seventeen Swamps of Serenity: voted down repeatedly for incorporation into the Seven Heavens, afterlife reward zone for all good sentient amphibians, reptiles, jellies
2. The realm of chrome and steel: shiny, highly polished 1980's airbrush-world w/liquid steel flora and fauna
3. The Hell of Bitterest Regret: the whiniest, mopiest most depressing zone imaginable filled with totally self-absorbed spirits all trying to out-suffer each other
4. Sorcerer/scientist's control group universe: proving ground for new and improved technologies and magics, introduced populations of clones of various species, starting to develop independent cultures (driven by inter-species warfare)
5. Epidermia: rolling plains of flesh under blood-red skies, happy grazing grounds for all manner of intelligent mites, ticks, chiggers and other parasites
6. Sphere of lucid dreams: terrain, events and denizens shaped by whatever minds might enter
7. Halloween world: populated entirely by goblins, witches, villains, movie monsters and horror hosts, every house is haunted, every cauldron bubbles over with evil
8. Mischievia: a spiritual realm whose impish occupants speak nothing but jokes, plot nothing but pranks
9. The Cosmic Hive: an insect heaven of perpetual blissful buzzing
10. Sphere of internment: a truly maximum security facility housing troublemakers from a million universes, can be entered by powerful sorceries but no one has left yet
11. Domain of the First Cause: infinite thrumming being of white light in repose, due to singular nature will immediately annihilate the current reality to set off big bang if somehow awakened
12. The Dungeon-verse: near infinite network of doors, corridors, rooms, tricks, traps, monsters, and treasures without intelligible purpose, the sub-creation of a capricious god since assassinated by his peers

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Magic Sword Awesomizer

1. Blade vibrates like electric knife, negates armor bonus of opponent
2. So wickedly awesome to view when drawn (accompanied by extra-loud Hollywood TSHIIING!) weaker foes must check morale or reconsider engagement
3. Mighty chop can sunder any single object in twain (up to the size of a house or small bridge): success destroys the weapon
4. Emits gale-force winds against enemy missile fire once per day
5. Chaotic component of blade breaks bonds of iron molecules, speedily corroding arms and armor of enemies
6. Shrieks obscenities in ancient language, timed to disrupt concentration of attackers
7. Spell-cleaving: once per day may chop an active spell out of existence (examples: extinguishing a fireball in mid-flight, hacking off lightning bolt)
8. May be hurled once per day with deadly accuracy and significant damage bonus
9. Dazzlingly shiny and selectively reflective, opponents cannot look directly at wielder
10. Can be commanded to self-destruct, will begin counting backwards from 100, explodes with extremely destructive force upon reaching zero
11. Ghost blade made for trans-planar warfare, only gives mortals the chills, works beautifully against the incorporeal
12. Reality hack: arcane energies may be permanently spent for emergency hack through substance of material plane, allowing for escape/travel into the aether

Friday, May 4, 2012

Secreted on the Master Thief's Person

1. Spool of stout wire in heel of boot
2. Razor blades stitched into lining of undergarment
3. Extensible poisoned needle in fingertip of glove
4. 500gp gem strapped to nether regions
5. False mustache/beard in seam of cloak
6. 'Twixt lip and gum: glass capsule that releases drug that simulates death for 3 minutes when crushed
7. Stiletto strapped to inner thigh
8. Lead sling bullets on inside of leather girdle, removable laces cunningly disguised precision sling
9. Pull ring on glove activates retractable garrote
10. In fitted leather case on small of back: variety of documents, credentials, symbols both holy and unholy for range of possible identities
11. Crystal that when crushed teleports one person to thief's awesome hideout in major city
12. Tiny phrase book in multiple languages with useful bits such as: "My guild will pay 1000gp ransom for my safe return."

Thursday, May 3, 2012

The Vital Bits of Dungeon Level Four

1. Vast self-luminous lake of clear green water in incredibly huge cavern, partially flooding numerous smaller caves: home to amphibious spiral shelled kraken and their albino merman allies
2. Party of subhumans led by necromancer's chief associate w/shipment of arms and secret communique for the merman theocrat
3. Giant jellyfish that hunt orca-style, beaching themselves to take terrestrial prey
4. Deep dwarfs nearing completion of centuries-long project to divert subterranean river, massive pumping station ready to go online, will instantly alter ecosystem, guarded by ogre and troll mercenaries
5. Half-flooded prehuman undercity, amphibious kraken oversee archaeological study by cult hierophants
6. Waterspouts that seem to target and relentlessly pursue individuals until giving a damn good thrashing or somehow dispersed
7. Mermen training in preparation for amphibious assault on deep dwarf river project
8. Slug folk traders await shipment of subtlest liquors brewed by the mermen, a chatty bunch
9. Domesticated lake monsters provide merman mass transit
10. Merman concierge station administers water breathing potions to underworld traders and dispenses valuable hints on merman etiquette
11. Many-spired city of the mermen and their terrible secret: as a result of curse females savage and terrifying flesh-eaters that must be kept imprisoned in sub-lake breeding dome
12. Wandering deity: towering ebon figure hand fishes with mystically baited line (catch and release), moving slowly about the lake and environs surrounded by fawning merman fanatics incessantly pleading for removal of curse

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Memorable Features of Dungeon Level Three

1. Grand promenade of the prehuman city: cave tenements, former domain of the subhumans, now housing for cult fanatics awaiting the arrival of their terrible deity
2. Ambient whirring from below as of a great engine pushed to its maximum exertion
3. Anti-subhuman traps around perimeter: tripwire activated catapults loaded w/nails and glass
4. Forum of the prehumans now used by cultists' for public execution of heretics, captured enemies (especially numerous: albino mermen)
5. Deep dwarfs under contract to excavate new vaulted chamber to house cult deity, will disallow any attempt to observe their work in progress
6. Scientific installation of the prehumans, refitted for sorcery by the cult high priests: perpetual contact with deity established via huge half-magic communication device
7. Howling chasm houses large hive of chaos flies, rapidly multiplying and growing more bold in their choice of prey
8. Witch subsect of cult finds current leadership sub par, schemes dubious: planning assassinations, looking to hire
9. Foulflow River enters several sections of level, currently alive with aggressive giant phagocytes, harvested as protein source by subhumans, cultists, and several species of subterranean monster
10. Natural caverns gradually descend to level four, former game preserve of the prehuman civilization, still haunted by myriad horrors from the unguessed past
11. Giant river monster like a fetal bird that projects beams of terror from its unopened eyes
12. Deep dwarfs carving out new underworld byway breach gas filled chamber, releasing from stasis horde of headless naked man-creatures with two-handed swords and little regard for their own safety

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The Cool Parts of Dungeon Level Two

1. Necromancer's HQ w/secret stair access to surface: uses subhumans as buffer against forces from below, serves as their occasional arcane savior
2. Seemingly bottomless and literally howling chasm separates factions, subhumans have built up shrine on their side, offer sacrifices to the presumed howling deity below, access to levels three and four, mountaineering required
3. Warlock and squad of bloodthirsty henchmen make full study of prehuman ruins, have amassed significant hoard of relics
4. Dripping wet and humid natural caverns descend gradually to the lake on level four, subhumans haul shipments of arms this way, simultaneously disposing of their dead (and the necromancer's failed experiments) to appease predatory cave monsters
5. Incredibly elaborate series of frescoes in vast hall depict in some detail the extra-terrestrial origin of humankind
6. Partially looted royal catacombs of the extinct prehumans, signs of necromantic tampering, access denied by massed skeleton warriors
7. Neutral slug folk protected by small private force of ogre mercenaries (disgruntled): losses incurred in trade war prevent the slug folk from making their payroll
8. Roving miasma of living gasses: stupefies upon inhalation, pursued by subhuman addicts
9. A giant snake with eight insect-like legs roams the corridors, exhaling choking black smoke
10. Herd of elusive dungeon deer on perpetual feeding migration through environs to scattered moss and lichen beds, led by intelligent stag
11. Defensible and out-of-the-way room: automatic party ejector, one-way elevator to surface
12. Gaming halls of slug folk: open to all and sundry, must buy at least 100gp worth of tokens at well-guarded gates