Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Rat-Thing Tunnels: Part 2

Last week I began putting together notes for an adventurer. I made two promises at the start of last week's blog: That I would finish the adventure by the end of today's blog and that I'd introduce two plots the players could follow before the end. Now that the PCs are in the dungeon let's kick it up a notch.

Room 5: The Goop Pit

This room is dominated by a pool of disgusting green goo. The walls are lined with small shelves covered in pieces of junk and rolls of paper.

This room once drained out into the sea, but the pipeline has long since collapsed. The fetid water has lain dormant for centuries evolving new and horrid life. Diesak the Ratling uses this room as his lair, staying high up on the shelves to study his scrolls, and coordinate his plans among the Ratfolk who respect him as something of a leader.


Giant Amoeba (x1) hp 15 ; This giant amoeba spontaneously generated from the fetid pool below. It no longer feeds on the ratfolk as they provide it with a steady diet of funguses and rotting meats they scrounge from the surface. As such it attacks any non-ratfolk in the room.

Diesak the Ratling (x1) hp 19; Diesak was once the familiar of a sorcerer's apprentice in Shadock. When Pirate bands moved into the region of the city a particularly rough group of half-elves killed Diesak's master and began squatting in his home. Diesak escaped and found the Ratfolk living in the sewers. Over time he has become something of a leader among the Ratfolk and now seeks to lead them in a quest for vengeance against the pirates. First, he needs to equip his new crew and fill his repetoire of spells and thus has been sending the Ratfolk out to steal and salvage useful equipment to fuel his vendetta against the pirates in Shadock.

If Diesak is caught by surprise he grabs as many scrolls as he can and Dimension Doors to room 4 while the Giant Amoeba keeps PCs busy.

If Diesak has retreated to this room he stays upon the high shelves (7 feet off the ground). Moving and reading from the scrolls in his treasure hoard as he goes (determine randomly each round which of the scrolls he uses. Diesak opts to use his spell like abilities, or throw junk at the PCs if the Scroll of Create Treasure Map or Comprehend Languages is determined. If the giant Amoeba is killed he uses his spell like ability to cast summon swarm to call forth a swarm of rats to attack the PCs. If he drops to less than 5 hp Diesak casts invisibility on himself, leaps into the underwater tunnel leading to Area 3 and tries to retreat upstairs and into the city to become a recurring foe for the PCs.


1 x Scroll of Create Treasure Map (with a treasure map drawn on the back, this map is of a group of Warehouses in the Shadocks, written in scratchy writing are the words Bannigan's Chest).
1 x Scroll of Acid Arrow.
2 x Scroll of Magic Missile
1 x Scroll of Shield
1 x Scroll of Comprehend Languages
1 x Scroll of Ear Piercing Scream
1 x Scroll of Silent Image

100 gp worth of mechanical objects which can either be sold or be worth 200 gp of components for any mechanical trap the PCs may choose to create.

A diary written in Common with scratchy handwriting detailing the life of Diesak as a familiar to an apprentice wizard in the Shadocks, and later the terrible vengeance Diesak has in store for the crew of Bannigan's Wake.

Room 6: The Fungus Room

The air in here is thick with spores and pollens, thick ropy funguses grow from the floor walls and ceiling of this room. The breeds and types of fungus in this musty room are diverse and colorful lending a sense of bizarre whimsy to this otherwise foul area.
This room is overgrown with dozens of kinds of fungus. Many of them edible and nutritious, others are mildly poisonous or narcotic. A DC 15 Knowledge (Nature) Check allows a PC to harvest a day's rations from the fungus, a failed check harvest's a crop of mushrooms which are mildly poisonous if ingested.

Oddcap Mushroom; Type (Ingested); Save DC: 11, Onset: 1 minute; Freq: 1/hour for 24 hours; Effect: Sickened (24 hours), 1 Wis damage. Cure: 1 Save.


Dire Rats (x3) hp 5, 5 and 5.

Development: The Dire Rats in this room attack any non-vermin that enters defending the fungus farm to the death.

Room 7: The Machinery

This rectangular room has pipes, cogs and pistons sticking out of the walls floors and ceilings haphazardly. Except for one wall which has a tile mural which appears to be some manner of ancient map. Many of the tiles are shattered or missing particularly on the southern half.

When this pump station operated in its hey day it was capable of taking the slack for many of the city's districts. When the cataclysm dropped half the city into the sea a similar area of tiles dropped as well. The Ratlings salvage many of the pipes in this room to use in their traps. PCs may notice that the pipes in this room roughly correspond to the pipes in room 3 by making a DC 15 Perception check. PCs can make Knowledge (Engineering) checks to change the flow of the pipes. Each of these checks takes approximately 5 minutes, PCs can take a 20 if they choose and this check may be made untrained.
Pipe Activation:
NW the door to this room closes if water flows through the North Western Corner Pipe.
NE Room 8 begins flooding, if left to continue for an hour the room fills with water and bursts the rubble blocking entrance to that room but leaves rooms 8 and 4 in waist deep water.
SE This causes Room 4 to begin filling with water.
SW This one is currently active and keeping the door to room 5 closed. By activating any other pipe the door to Room 5 opens up.


A trio of Ratfolk are in this room attempting to salvage the rusty pipes for scrap.

Room 8: The Blocked Room

This damp room smells of ancient death, furniture which has long turned to rot lies strewn about. Sharpened bones lashed together into crude tools with intestinal string lay strewn about in corners.

During the cataclysm part of the tunnel collapsed dropping rubble in front of the entrance and entrapping a work team of Dwarves. As time passed the Dwarves fell upon each other cannibalistically, until finally only one survived. He starved to death and rose later as a Lacedon.
If the PCs approach Room 8 before bursting it open with water pressure they may hear scratching from the other side of the rubble with a DC 20 Perception check. If the PCs are particularly noisy the Lacedon gains a Perception Check at a -5 penalty due to the interceding rubble. If the Lacedon is made aware of the PCs it calls out:
"Please, somebody let me out, I've been trapped down here so long. I'm so very hungry, and it's so very dark."
The Lacedon attempts to Bluff the PCs into letting it free (+4 bonus on Bluff) by using the pipes in Area 7.


Derk Advanced Lacedon (CR 2); hp 17.

Concluding the Adventure:

Once the PCs have cleared the Pump Station of creatures through violence, diplomacy, intimidation or trickery the building above is safe to use as they see fit.

The PCs and GM have a couple of options at this point:
Bannigan's Quest - Captain Bannigan resides in the Shadocks squatting in the house of a man he killed. The PCs currently have a treasure map leading to Bannigan's Treasure. Will the PCs claim it for themselves or speak to Bannigan first? Either way trouble's brewing in the Shadocks.
Thieve's Weregild - Now that the PCs have robbed the Docksmen of a fine set of trapmakers the PCs might owe the guild some gold or be in for a fierce rivalry. Perhaps Bannigan's Treasure might smooth things over?
The Old City - The Tile Mural can be fixed over a period of weeks, and locations of lost vaults of treasure beneath the city might be uncovered. If the PCs are canny enough to search for it.
The Mage Guild's Inquiry - An investigator for the Mage's guild visits the PCs seeking Diesak. It seems his old master's spellbook is still missing, if the PCs could help track it down it might go a ways to getting a PC mage into the guild's good graces.

In any case gang, I hope you enjoyed this brief journey into quick adventure design.

I'll see you next week. Feel free to comment here, on my facebook page or on this thread at

I really enjoyed writing this quick adventure outline, clearly there's plenty of space to expand things, but I've avoided being super tactical in order to encourage a more free-form, improv style of GMing. Give me a holler if you run it, and I especially want to hear about any changes you made.

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