More Thirsty Pastimes! Now we’re onto the second level, where the adventurers need to make like a tree.
Don’t be too fooled by the map. The generator I used can only do straight corridors and doors, so you need to use a fair amount of imagination to see like I do. Each room is on a different level, either suspended from tree branches, or cut into trees themselves; and all of the ‘corridors’ are actually twisty jungle bridges, rope ladders and/or steps cut into the trunk of enormous trees. Go crazy with the descriptions!
- Environment: a jungle!
- ‘Rooms’ and ‘corridors’ are actually wooden platforms, rope bridges, vine ladders etc (see below)
- All rooms at different levels, may have to climb up/down to progress
- Doors: no doors, but plenty of corridor/room traps.
- Lighting: sun is shining, but can be quite dim under thick the thicker parts of the canopy.
- Creatures: bullywugs, ettercaps, spiders, blights, shambling mound, stirges.
- Sleeping party might be ambushed by spiders, stirges or blights.
- Platform/corrdior traps: on each point marked by a letter. roll d6:
- false floor, fall 20ft per time, 2d6 damage. Make three consecutive saves to grab hold of something on way down, fail all 3 = death
- web, save to avoid, trapped for 2d6 rounds, giant spider follows
- poison needles (10ft burst), +5 attack, save to resist poison, 3d4 needles, 3d12 poison
- naughty tentacle vines, +7 attack, 3d6 acid damage and target grappled (takes damage each turn)
- trunk swing, save to avoid, 5d10 damage
- ochre jelly
To start, the party is teleported onto the bottom edge of the map, on the walkway between rooms 11 and 8. They’re about 100ft up in a dense forest/jungle and the platform they’re on sways and creaks slightly in the wind.
Each number refers to the labelled rooms on the map, and each is labelled with its height. Climbing rope ladders and maintaining balance on the walkways generally doesn’t require a skill check/saving throw (unless you want to be mean and/or add tension to a chase or something).
- Canopy Top (300ft)
- Amazing view of the forest! Eagles/other birds soar above, the sun is shining, it’s really nice. Also not a bad place to rest.
- But this platform is a little wobbly. Falling from here would be bad…
- Long bridge down and across to a platform in a clearing (5)
- Spider Queen’s Lair (50ft)
- Lair is covered in food (dead creatures), held in webbing. Piles of shiny objects stored in corners of room
- Spider queen (use stats for drider) is here, with 3x Ettercap helpers, unless she moved to defend eggs (room 10) (4000xp + 3x750xp)
- Most piles of shiny things are just bits of armour, pans, cutlery etc that they’ve hoarded without sense. There is however a necklace of +1 armour, and a +2 dagger.
- However 3 of the trapped creatures are still alive! One human, elf and dwarf, who had previously tried to get through this level. They each have a random magic item they’re willing to give the party.
- Dark trunk platform (60ft)
- It’s dark and sweaty down here, and there’s a strange smell: sort of metallic and sour.
- Almost hidden under the leaf mulch is a group of corpses leaning against the tree trunk – investigation shows that they have been bled dry.
- Have everyone make a saving throw to avoid surprise attack by 20 striges! (2000xp)
- Long winding walkways down to opening on forest floor (13), 20ft climb to 4 (rope ladder is slack, as if it used to be much longer)
- Broken Battlefield (70-120ft)
- Scene of utter carnage: spider, Ettercap, and bullywug corpses litter the floor (and canopy). A lot of the platform is broken and falling away, the whole thing is broken from its bindings and now hangs at an angle. It seems to be held up by spider silk as much as the normal ropes and bindings.
- Connected to bridges/ladders at northern end, but sags as it goes south so getting back up to bullywug village is almost impossible (50ft gap between end of ladder and platform).
- Can move slowly on the platform, but it lurches and sags and weight is put on it. Needs saving throw to do anything fast or complex.
- If they search the corpses, there is: +1 leather armour, +1 spear and scroll of cure poison. Spear is driven hard into platform and covered in silk – removing it causes the platform to lurch and everyone on it must make a saving throw or fall and slide down (slide down 5ft for every number away from 20 they rolled).
- 10ft drop to 3, long winding passage upwards to 1, long walkway to 6 – bridge enters spider webbing after 20-30ft.
- Forest King’s Reception (xxft)
- Large open landing, quite a way from the rest, and in a clearing in the canopy. The platform is fixed to single enormous post, no other exits.
- In northern edge is a large wooden bowl, with a plaque in front of it. Written in Sylvan it says: “only the heart of a queen may summon the forest king”
- If the party place a literal heart in the bowl (either Ettercap or bullywug) the king arrives, but is pissed that they killed his citizens.
- If the party place the bullywug queen’s locket in the bowl the king arrives and is a little jealous. He’ll transport them to the next level in exchange for it.
- The king is a massive treant, and the portal is inside his mouth. They’re not really meant to kill him, just get down his throat.
- 6000xp for getting to next level (+8000xp for defeating treant king)
- Spider’s Web (100ft)
- No longer on wooden platforms, but dense webbing. Gaps around – clearly entrances for spiders and such. Entire area is sticky, but passable (difficult terrain).
- Vibrations in web alert spiders to party. Will attack about 30s after party enter. Saving throw or surprised.
- 5x giant spiders and 3x ettercaps (5x300xp + 3x750xp)
- 20ft slope down to 10.
- Bullywug village (170ft)
- Continuation of 14
- Northern edge (border with 4) is heavily fortified, 100ft drop to 4 (rope ladder only goes 50ft)
- Trapped landing (100ft)
- 4 traps on this level – false floor, tree swing x2 and poison needles
- Have first tree swing when person steps onto platform, false floor in front of ladder to 11, second tree swing in middle of landing and poison needles in front of steps to 9.
- 20ft rope ladder up to 11, 60ft rope ladder up to 9, or tiered branch steps up to 9
- Bullywug Ambush (160ft)
- Nothing happens on this level until party try to leave
- Bullywug lands in front of them, brandishing spear. Then several more appear and surround party. Looking up, there are more in the branches with throwing spears.
- Can be fought – 20x bullywugs (10x melee, 10x ranged) (20x 100xp)
- If party surrender, will escort them to Bullywug Queen at 15
- 10ft rope ladder to 14
- Spider nursery (80ft)
- Similar to 6, but floor is more solid (not difficult terrain) and webbing is covered in eggs, each about the size of a melon.
- Destroying eggs can stop the attackers from 6, although if those in 6 are already dead, destroying the eggs angers the spider queen from 2.
- Long tunnel(s) to 2.
- Blight Landing (120ft)
- Wooden platform, covered in vines, branches, under/overgrowth.
- Once party enters, vine and needle blights come to life and attack
- 4x vine blights and 4x needle blights (increase their hp to around 30) (8x 100xp)
- Rope ladder down to platform 8 (20ft), steep steps up to 9 (40ft up), winding bridge and ladder up 14 (50ft up), very long narrow bridge to 6
- Tentacle vines (110ft)
- It’s dark down here, vines almost cover the platform, will have to move through them
- Some of the vines are actually naughty tentacles, random character is grabbed and pulled into air
- Pulled 5ft up per round, and takes 3d6 acid damage. 5 tentacles need to be destroyed to free victim, but 2 are replaced on the tentacles turn (AC12, hp15, init +3) 1000xp
- 10ft down towards 3, then another 40ft from ‘corridor’ to platform 3
- Forest floor? (0ft)
- Long winding bridges leads to what is apparently the base of the forest. Vert large clear patch (~100ft diameter), mound of vegetation in middle (~30ft away)
- If they investigate mention that there is a rotting smell, and the birds/animals are quiet here
- Shambling mound attack! (3000xp)
- Inside corpse of mound there are: quiver of 20 fire arrows (do extra d6 fire damage on hit), +1 chainmail, scroll case with scrolls of enlarge/reduce, barkskin and mass healing (3d8 healing to everything in 20ft radius)
- Bullywug Village (170ft)
- Masses of frog people milling about, constructed ponds built onto trunks of trees, some full of spawn and/or tadpoles
- Citizens will flee from party if there was a fight at 9
- Guards that remain (5x) will defend entrance to queen’s chamber 15
- Same level as 7 (village continues)
- 60ft drop to 12, 20ft climb to 4
- Bullywug Queen
- Queen’s consort can cast spell allowing party to talk to her
- Queen sits in bundle of leaves and flowers (quite nicely done), with subjects doting on her. Pile of insects that she periodically eats from.
- Is generally quite annoying and demands respect, adoration, etc.
- Demands that the party head to north west and destroys the spider queen
- If they do so, and return with some evidence of it she rewards them with a kiss and her heart (a heart-shaped locket -> gives +2 to saving throws, and when activated with a kiss turns user into a giant toad)