I’ve never had the opportunity to run the Tomb of Horrors. I really, really want to. I want to run a whole lot of 1st ed. dungeons using either Dungeon Crawl Classics or 5th ed. One day, maybe.
But to scratch this itch, I decided to draw a map inspired by the Tomb of Horrors module, which has always seemed to me one of the most bizarre, yet classic dungeon maps ever. It’s drastically different from the types of dungeons I usually design or run in a game. This map is supposed to imply any number of traps and encounters to polymorph your PCs into quivering balls of wet trauma disorder once they’re inside but still leave enough room for any DM to let his/her imagination run wild.
I really like this map. It’s probably one of my favorites I’ve drawn.
This map should fit well into any remote wilderness (or village with nearby undisturbed horrors who await only the foolish molestations of transient grave robbers).
Wanted to give a side-view of an underground structure a shot with this one. I’ve been doing quite a bit of experimentation lately with maps. I haven’t posted much yet in this regard, but in the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing them. Hopefully they’ll come out as awesome as I imagine them to be.
Also, I just realized there are only eight sarcophagi in the barrow. Where or what the ninth one is a matter of opinion.
Another creature for my future Metamorphosis Alpha Campaign–the Psychic Goldfish. These guys will be a reoccurring threat against the PCs while they explore the Mutual of Omaha Starship Vonnegut. I’ve included stats for Metamorphosis Alpha 1st ed. as well as stats for Dungeon Crawl Classics. I hope to run the game using the Mutant Crawl Classics rules when they become available with a strong mixture from the MA 1st ed. books Goodman Games is putting out. Anyway, here are those maniacal pet fish.
Psychic Goldfish in Self-Contained Humanoid Environment Exploration & Domination Apparatus
Armor Class: 7
Hit Points: 20
Movement in Spaces: 1 land, 18 water
Radiation Resistance: 12
Mental Resistance: 18
Defect: (Risk of Aneurysm, see below)
Mutations: Heightened Intelligence, Hydrokinesis, Mental Blast, Mental Control, Telekinesis, Telekinetic Arm, Telekinetic Shield.
This is one of the (many) maps I’m drawing for my own version of the starship in Metamorphosis Alpha. The Mutual of Omaha Starship Vonnegut is built of a number of interlocking discs with multiple decks, making it much, much larger than the Warden.
Deck 47-Gimel was once the vacation destination for outdoorsy crewmembers and passengers living in the forediscs of the Mutual of Omaha Starship Vonnegut.
Travelers upon the [Insert Appropriate Name so as to Invoke Terror in Your PCs’ Hearts] River will come upon a oftentimes welcoming, yet altogether strange site before they head, for whatever reasons (we’re not judging), into the sodden wastes of the [really nasty swampy, ruin-strewn lands upriver].
Ongnub the River Warden is a half-orc who claims to have inherited his title and hut from the previous river warden. Whether he is telling the truth, of course, is entirely up to your PCs preconceived bias against his race.
This is an older map I made in attempt to nail down an exterior style. I’ve since changed it up a bit but thought this was still worth sharing.
Short post today
A few weeks ago, I discovered Metamorphosis Alpha–the very first science fiction RPG, published by TSR way back in 1976, eight years before I came into existence. In those few weeks, I’ve found myself imagining how far this sort of gonzo, post-apocalyptic sword & planet colony ship setting could go and it seems the answer is that it is limitless. Right now, I’m working pretty determinedly on my own setting for the game, which will (hopefully) use the Mutant Crawl Classics rules whenever they are released.
This map is the first in a series of posts I’ll be making for Metamorphosis Alpha.The plan is to share material that I’m working for the campaign, such as maps, creatures, gadgets, setting info (since I’m making my own ship: the Mutual of Omaha Starship Vonnegut), etc. The first piece is a small map that could function as either a PC homebase or encounter site.
Yard Beetles Included.
If other deities just aren’t quite “alpha” enough for your hardened sword-swinging veteran, muscled scallywag, or sulky-eyed barbarian with massive pectorals, then Behold! the ancient temple of Ar’Nuuld the Mightily Thewed, God of Strength, Manly Manliness, and Feats of Athleticism that are not Pansy Dexterous Stuff, complete with plenty of portcullises which to lift and bars therein to bend, deluxe sun-roofed flexing pit, where brocolyte and faithful alike can slather a bit of wizard grease (the spell, not the rendered fat of magic-users, though it comes aplenty) on their honed and minotaur hormone-enhanced flexors and praise Ar’Nuuld among the equally strapping; a chamber housing the Unliftable Stone of Ar’Nuuld itself, which has thrown out many an olympian back and only been budged a quarter of an inch in twelve centuries; and now featuring a members-only sauna! (Please forgive the mess: the leg area of our temple has long ago collapsed into ruin).
Memberships available via the Sacred Rites of Mad Gains and the Shibboleth of Form (and 20 gold pieces per moon or 50 gold pieces for three moons, paid in full).
Below, I’ve included stats and background info for Ar’Nuuld based upon TSR’s Deities and Demigods (1980) and Richard J. LeBlanc, Jr.’s Petty Gods. Hopefully there is enough included (and not included) to allow you to include Ar’Nuuld in your own campaigns. In the future, I also hope to write a whole adventure centered around this temple and The Mightily Thewed’s worshippers.
Wilson’s Loping Neckbeard
Armor Class: 6 Hit Points: 65
Movement in Spaces: 10
Radiation Resistance: 15 Constitution: 18
Mental Resistance: 3 Strength: 17
Defect: Diminished Senses (Sight), Mental Defenselessness.
Mutations: Heightened Hearing, Heightened Smell, Marsupial, Leaper, Taller, Out-Sized Body Parts (Neck), Quadrupedal.
A domesticated Wilson’s Loping Neckbeard serving as a mount for a Psychic Goldfish wearing a Self-Contained Humanoid Environment & Exploration Apparatus. Notice the electrified prod.
Appearance: While they retain a superficially human appearance, Wilson’s Loping Neckbeards range between 20 feet long (males) and 16 feet long (females). Their skin colors range the full spectrum of a normal human, as well does their hair color, though they are commonly found shaven if domesticated. In the wild, they are known for the luxurious manes that hang from the bottoms of their supple necks. These manes are prized by some tribes for the decoration of ceremonial garb and can be traded for valuable items.
Loping Neckbeards have squinty, nearly useless eyes, which they make up for with their broad noses and large ears. They are constantly heard huffing and snorting in their herds. They move by long loping strides, hence their name. An unmistakable arrhythmic beat heard across the plains is the sound of a herd of loping neckbeards brought on by their gangly, mutant forms.
This map and meenlock were one I used recently in my 5th Ed. Dungeons and Dragons Campaign. (There’s a few more maps that go along with it that I’ll post as well.) This one was a lone, ruined tower which the PCs sought refuge in on an island across from another island on which a horde of orcs were making camp and which held the Tower of Innisquil the Humourless. Unfortunately for the PCs, the island was home to a nasty little non-traditional family of Meenlocks.
Meenlocks are particularly horrible little guys and I love them for it. They make their homes in caverns connected to the surface or other caverns by long winding moss-packed tubes that smell like rotten corpses. They stalk people, cause them to hallucinate, and eventually kidnap them so as to drag them back to their lairs and turn these victims into more meenlocks. I imagine a meenlock raid on a campsite to steal victims is a romantic outing for these critters, akin to a night of mini-golf with your sweetie that leads to an unexpected firstborn. In my game, we never really got into the psychosocial hows and what-tos of the Meenlocks or what brought them to the remote island. But you can!
Meenlock from the 1st Ed. Fiend Folio (Aww…whose a little abomination? You are!)
Here are the stats I used for the meenlocks (they’re a bit rough and specifically for my game so there’s no challenge rating calculated) and a few ideas that might be of some help to understand things from these poor little buggers’ point of view.
Here is my first (major) attempt at drawing a layout for an inn. I wanted to do something a bit more detailed than the usual dungeon map, so I added quite a few embellishments to the layout, such as tables and beds, etc. I like how it turned out. As per what’s becoming the common trend, below the map is a number of ideas on the dignified history of The Floggèd Pollywogg and ways you might incorporate it into your games.