Pine Ridge

Tonight heralds one of my favourite early game encounter that can be scaled up to any level. This weeks adventure centred around Pine Ridge; a small farming community, looks to serve as that adventure that ups the ante. So without giving any more away for this week let’s grab a coffee, sit down and roll on with the adventure.


Pine Ridge

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The trip through the hills and mountains upwards towards the large expanse of land at the top of the rise. This land was extremely fertile and it was evident by vast amount of vegetation growing in any suitable soil. The party had however ran into several obstacles on the way up. Hunting snares, pit traps and the like were frequent on the path or just off it. The oddest of them all were traps that released beasts that attacked them on sight. Without a cause or evidence of who caused them they were written off as the pranks of youths the party continued their trek to the town of Pine Ridge who was reportedly in need of heroes.

As they pushed past the last few crests of the mountain range they were ascending they stumbled into the large, oaken gates of Pine Ridge. A few moments of talking to the guards they were let through with nothing less than cheering. In fact the guards proclaimed that they were the adventurers sent to them to aid them. This only increased the volume of noise and frequency of well wishes. However, moving their way through the streets they saw that things were grim. Several wagons had belongings piled up high and several draft horses or mules were attached already or nearby. In fact as they were led towards a large central house the sense of worry increased with each step. Something was not right in Pine Ridge.

The Job

Entering the house they were greeted by a elderly man, woman and a young woman who was dressed like a hunter or scout. They walked through the halls of the house and noticed many of the paintings in the house had images of heroes or hunters who had slain a great beast. There was even one of a dragon hunter mounted at the top of the stairway they ascended. Moving into a small room they were sat down to a small lunch of hot meats and fresh bread.

‘Sadly this is all I can offer you’ the woman said who sat opposite them, the elderly man stood to her left. ‘We have a problem you see. All the game is disappearing and sometimes our livestock goes too.’ she said softly nodding to a servant who closed a door.

‘It wouldn’t be so bad if it was just the animals. It’s not that frequent that I lose my beasts.’ the standing man said. ‘But I lost one of the farms I maintain just last night. Burned to the ground and the people and animals lost or taken.’ he continued. ‘I have had Rashel look into it trying to track what happened. What she found is troubling.’

The young hunter nodded and leaned onto the table. ‘I think we have dragons…’ she breathed out slowly. ‘One or two, young ones at best. But its the only thing that could burn down the houses and that would take and eat that much meat.’ she continued. ‘But I also found something else that confirmed my suspicions.’ she said as she reached into a pouch on her hip. After a moment she produced a long, scaled digit that ended in a sharp claw.

More than just pests

‘A kobold. In fact I believe we have a den of them. My master told me that kobolds gather in great number under the rulership of a Dragon. They worship them like gods. I have no doubt in my mind that there is a dragon somewhere in this mountain.’ she finished as she held out the finger to the party.

‘That’s where you come in. I am the one that placed the request for aid. I hope that you are fit for the task and up to finding out what’s happening in Pine Ridge. For all our sakes I hope its just a few kobolds but we can’t be sure yet.’ the elderly lady said as she sipped on some tea. ‘I hope you will accept our request for aid, we may not have much to offer as a feast but these mountains are full of gold and we have ample to share.’


Tonight I wanted to bring my favourite early encounter to light and bring with it the promise of something more. A dragon is a great encounter to have that really sets the tone for the campaign. We also have the prospect of a kobold nest and I find them one of the most fun low level encounters to be had. However, despite being fun they are quite dangerous and this weeks adventure is going to be a testament to that. So don’t forget to come back daily to keep up with what I am writing here. I hope that you find this encounter as much fun as I believe it will be. Don’t forget to let me know how you go with the adventure and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Brazen Adventure Archives

Tonight I decided that I wanted to look at a way of putting the most useful content in once place. So I created a new page in the blog called The Brazen Adventure Archives.

This will aim to have my Released Zines and, hopefully, all my maps one day where aspiring or experienced game masters can turn to if they are in need of an easy night. Recently I had the pleasure of sitting down with a fellow experienced DM who, like me, has been through a few additions. In the discussion of the hobby, our tactics, our dreams and homes for the TTRPG system we both love it validated what I do here.

It’s a hard job, this adventure business. You lose some good adventurers along the way and gods knows I have lost a few myself. But as the facilitators of the great world of Roleplaying Games we have the biggest job. Sure they may fight dragons, rescue princesses from marriage pacts with demons and face off against the endless hordes of goblins. But we spend ours, countless days over the year massaging their ideas, their actions and the actions of others into a world. This takes time and energy and that’s where I think I can come into it.

I am not the best Dungeon Master, I am not sure if anyone should hold that title either. But what I am is experienced. I can pull a one shot adventure out of my hat in 30 minutes. I can create magical items, creatures or settings with the right prompt be it image, word or song. Why not give what I can back to the hobby that has truly helped to shape my life over the years I have been doing this.

For the Dungeon and Game Master

So that’s what this new page is about – giving fellow game or dungeon masters the night off. If your party steal a ship and sale in the opposite direction, don’t worry. I have something for you – try Ophidian island, or if they find a tranquil pool and have been complaining how easy it is – have them try Kappa’s on for size and tweak Misguided resting place.

This is a place written for the creators of world and facilitators of epic stories. Not just a creative outlet for myself but I hope a tool or quick-win for that new or tired DM.

So while I look forward to populating the Brazen Adventure Archive with more adventures, maps, creatures and content I will also start to get more involved in the local gaming community. Give the local DMs the night off and let them roll some dice and experience something truly new. While I do this I hope you continue to read this here and I hope that if something truly inspires or helps you – you’ll let me know. Feedback is key in all parts of life whether its on the tabletop or off of it. Well what ever you do, I hope you do it with advantage because we can all use a choice to take the higher roll,

The Brazen Wolfe

The Mystery of Crelion Manor

Tonight and I have again decided to create a zine out of this weeks adventure, The Mystery of Crelion Manor. This adventure can be used system agnostic as we explore other RPGs out there other than D&D. So please adjust to what ever creatures you are using in your adventure! However as always Kobold fight club can be used to quickly balance an encounter for Dungeons and Dragons and Tetra-cube currently provides the stat-blocks for creatures (but this may change).

So I hope you enjoy this weeks adventure, The Mystery of Crelion Manor. If you like this format please let me know and I hope you enjoy.


The Mystery of Crelion Manor

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Crelion manor was a splendid building overseen by the Crelion family. Lord Crelion however was extremely lonely after the death of his childhood love and wanted someone to share the empty halls with. 

However, as time went on his loneliness disappeared with the arrival of his lady and they were soon wed. But on the night of their wedding a terrifying storm struck the manor. So terrible and ferocious the people that lived there died and the bodies of the Lord and Lady of the Manor were never found. 

Years later and the Manor has new owners who rent out rooms as a half-way inn between two large cities. But those who travel the roads are often preyed upon by terrifying creatures and flash storms that have fuelled the rumours of the manor being under a curse. 


PDF adventure – The Mystery of Crelion Manor


That will be it for tonight but I hope that next weekend you can get a party together, or find a DM/GM, to run this adventure. Don’t forget that next week I will be bringing another adventure to the table so don’t miss a thing and come back daily. And as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

A Cursed Crew

Friday night is here and it brings with it the tidings of battle. Tonight we look at a cursed crew, burdened with the knowledge that they can never leave their vessel and only the instigator of the curse knows the cure. However that’s not quite right as there is another who knows and who is dying to, well, finally die.


A Cursed Crew

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Tonight I want to broach the thought of hybrid monsters. I am not talking about the delightful owlbear or Seawolf or the like but the mix of two archetypes. The cursed crew that we will be encountering this week are a hybrid between a shadow and zombie. more nimble and spectral that a zombie, not as strong as a shadow but somewhere in between. So I will have a go at marrying the parts we need and see where we end up.

Created in Tetra-cube.

Thoughts

The idea behind these creatures is that they are the bound crew to the ship, except the captain of course and one other hidden one. But that’s for later.

They shouldn’t be able to do anything more than they could in life its just that they are affected by less. A normal strike, blow or cut from a normal weapon that would remove an arm connects but the semi-spectral body doesn’t appear to affect them as much. They aren’t meant to be strong as reflected by their actions but they are a pest that is hard to kill and they fight as they would be used to by now. By swarming and hoping their semi-spectral blades connect (reflected by poor to hit and damages).

Due to the increased durability they are more of a threat than a zombie but less than a shadow – but CR1/2 is probably the most suitable that we will come across.


As we wrap up another week here make sure to set aside some time for your hobby this weekend. I have a little goal to try and get a small force of Nighthaunt ready for a “let’s play” event I am assisting with in a few weekends time. For me this motivates me to pain models, something I struggle with, but it also has me excited to paint a few models I have in boxes still. So hopefully I will be able to field something other than Ghouls, Ghosts or Rats in the near future.

Don’t forget to come back to see what else helps to inspire this weeks adventure and, as always, don’t forget to roll it with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

A Port to Call Home

Welcome to Thursday night where we look at a port to call home for our pirate crew this week. The birthplace of a famous pirate may be romanticised in some instances but this week with Lamberk we aim to look at the darker nature of it. The encounters, to be covered tomorrow will likely involve a mixture of battlemap and theatre of the mind. This is one of my preferred methods as it gives a lot of flexibility for the DM. We don’t need a map every week but it can aid in tracking combat and positioning. So for this week I will scour my older posts and see if I have a ship and a house. For the eventual reveal, well you’ll just have to come back and see.


A Port to Call Home

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The Flying Owlbear is a massive ship that is rumoured to be able to travel across land as well as the seas. As the party look up at its ripped sails, ghostly lights and rotting wood as it rests in the middle of the town of Tarmak the rumours are true.

The Flying Owlbear – Created in Nightcafe.studio

The town of Lamberk has developed around a successful port. The majority of the infrastructure and commerce involve the sea and in the last few years after the installation of a naval guard the seas have become a safer place. Except for the rumours of ghostly sails that stalk the waters.

Due to its proximity of the water and the wealth that travels the sea its also the birthplace of many pirates, thieves and other criminals who prey on those that live or pass through.

Port Town of Lamberk – created in Nightcafe.studio

A rather short one tonight but its just the beginning steps to inspire this weeks adventure. So I do hope you will not forget to visit daily and, as always, don’t forget to roll it with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

The Parrots Call

Welcome to Wednesday night where we look at the advancement of our adventure this week as our party heeds the Parrots call. Now this one is a bit of a riddle to this week, with combat but perhaps with a twist. So sit back, grab a coffee and let’s roll into tonight’s write-up.


The Parrots Call

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The Parrot looked around the room at its silenced audience. A man stood up from his seat where moments ago he was slumped over.

“Shank. Shank foretells the arrival of the Flying Owlbear. See I am not crazy. The stories are true!” and he roared with laugher, ale froth still caught in his beard. With that the room cleared out, everyone running for the exits as the booming canon fire could be heard getting closer and louder. As the party went to move the parrot, Shank apparently, looked at the party. Its odd almost human like extra toes seeming to skitter across the table was it walked towards them.

‘Wait,’ it said as it got closer, turning its head to stare at the party with a ghostly eye. ‘Sin’s of the son wealth haunt the father. One unable to return to the place of his living, the other unwilling. One cursed to still live, the other lives a curse. Both existences healed only when both returns to ones place of birth.’ The parrot hopped closer and repeated it staring at them. Saying it loud enough that the sounds of canon fire seemed to punctuate the rhythmic sentences. Then the canon fire stopped and the parrot flew to land in front of the man who cried out before. Then with a groan of wood from outside signalling the arrival of something, the parrot flew towards the front of the Tavern and passed through the wall.

The stomping of boots came from the front of the tavern after a moment. Slowly the doors opened and a ghostly man strode in. Looking around he tavern he strode towards the bar, passing through a table, part of his ghostly body knocking over a tankard that bounced across the floor.

‘Rum, please.’ he said to no one, but a bottle flew across the table with a glass and he poured himself a glass.

‘So,’ he said as he turned to look at the party and the crazy man who remained. ‘Do you know where my treasure is?’


Thoughts

Tonight the riddle, the parrot, Bryce (the crazy old man) and the spectral NPC (Percy Bryceson) all play an important role. The riddle is hinting that we need both the Father, Bryce, and son, Percy to go home. There is the treasure and the encounter for the week. Well the encounter is on the boat as well – but let’s see if we can convince the party to get on a ghost ship that travels across the land…

Don’t forget to come back for the last few days of this week as we continue our adventure. I have some interesting maps, I hope, that I plan to do for this week as well as some more additions for our adventure. So I hope you will not forget to visit daily and, as always, don’t forget to roll it with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

The Owlbears Crew

Welcome to Tuesday where we look at NPCs that will join us for the week and this week are look at the Owlbears Crew. Tonight we have the star of the show, Josh aka, Shank the parrot. But the plot is a bit thicker this week so let’s not wait any longer and let’s get on with the write-up.


The Owlbears Crew

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The Owlbears crew were rumoured to be bloodthirsty, cutthroats who loved nothing more than pillaging and killing. In fact this was… True. Almost all the crew members were hired, captured or enslaved because of their brutality and hunger for violence and plunder. But despite all this there we are few who were there because they felt obliged and none more so than Bryce Bronson – the father of the Captain of the ship.

Bryce was disheartened by his sons actions after a rather bloodthirsty skirmish with the a merchant vessel. Shocked by his sons behaviour he faked his death by falling overboard and secretly made his way to shore. There he blended in with society and became a farmer.

When the news of the ship and its crew’s demise came to Bryce he was both relieved and distraught. Despite the repulsion he felt for the unwarranted violence he still adored his boy and the though of him never reconciling and making peace with the pirate lord shocked him. This eventually shattered his sanity and he began to see ghostly visitations of his son, hearing the ghostly cannon fire of the Flying Owlbear and even seeing his son walking through the streets, searching for something.

Josh “Shank” – the Parrot.

Created in Nightcafe.studio

A ghostly glow has taken over the parrot, that and the extra clawed toes it appears with that gives it an alien and haunting appearance. When ever the parrot named Shank appears the Flying Owlbears cannon fire shortly follows, real or not.

Old Bryce the farmer, refers to the Parrot as Josh and breaks down into a nervous wreck when the parrot appears in town which has lead to rumours of a curse. And of a treasure that old Bryce and the parrot called Shank both know about.


Bryce Bronson

Created in Artbreeder

Bryce was once a member of the Flying Owlbears crew, although it will take divine intervention or magic to get this information out of him. His plundering days long gone he spends his time farming and providing food the the village of Tarmak.

However when he drinks, which is most nights, he can be found in the Iron Crustacean, run by old maritime workers. When he drinks he tells tales of the Flying Owlbear and its crews exploits, the daring escapes and the heroic rescues of those stuck out at sea. The tales make it sound like they were heroes rather than Pirates and so he is normally ignored or laughed at by the other patrons.


Percy Bryceson Bronson

Created in Artbreeder

Percy was Bryce’s son and the captain of the Flying Owlbear. He lost his mother early to a mysterious illness and since then he was obsessed with ancient relics and treasure. One night during a storm he was flung overboard and despite the crew, and his fathers best efforts he wasn’t able to be rescued. However as the sun rose on the next day he was found alive and straddling an ancient treasure chest that contained a solution to his problems… and the key to his future.


Thoughts

Tonight I wanted to touch on the three main NPCs that we will encounter. However like previous weeks and earlier adventures any NPC can be called upon in order to bolster the people available to us. A few weeks ago I recycled and reused a few adventure maps. This week we could take any NPC from the past… well almost any, and add them to the tavern, the roads or the town of Tarmak.


Tonight we met a few NPCs including a spooky parrot, Josh (aka Shank). Tomorrow we will expand the plot and cover the next part of the adventure. The mystery of the Flying Owlbear crew, treasure and the ship itself. So don’t forget to come back daily and, as always, don’t forget to roll it with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

The Flying Owlbear

Well I promised a coastal adventure to start this week and I deliver you the Flying Owlbear! Yup, I’d be a bit confused too but I do have a plan for this week inspired by, apparently, the imagination of a 4 year old. So without giving away anything let’s roll into this weeks adventure.


The Flying Owlbear

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Rumour’s have flown around for a many years about the pirate ship known as the Flying Owlbear. For many years the ship and its crew raided the southern coasts, no merchant vessel was safe from the pirate crew. However the stories didn’t finish there. Stories started to pop up of their owlbear crested ship crashing across the land, its broadside cannons roaring as they fired across the hills, valleys and plains.

But then they stopped and a new story started to emerge. One of ghosts and a lost treasure that would make anyone as wealthy as a king.

Spectral Envoy

As the party sit at a tavern, the Iron Crustacean, the room went silent as the grave. The scratching of claws on timber was the first sound that the party noticed as the spectral parrot squawked once and then silently flew down to land on the table in front of the party and their drinks.

‘The Owlbear rises once more, batten down the hatches. Load the Broadsides for it rides once more!’ it squawked before manic, yet squawky, laughter erupted from the tiny spectral bird. Slowly the sounds of broadside cannon fire could be heard from across the hills.


Tonight I get back to other RPG adventures that aren’t part of the Soulbound story ark. Don’t forget that tonight is only the beginning of the week and so you’ll have to come back each day this week to follow along. Also don’t forget to set some time aside this week for nurturing that creative spark and as always, don’t forget to roll it with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Crelion Manor Guest book

Welcome to the end of the week where I had a bit of a lazy day and create the puzzle for this week, the Crelion Manor Guest book. This is the puzzle piece that needs to be worked through with the roleplay aspects in this adventure to help drive the party to the answer to the riddle.


Crelion Manor Guest book

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Throughout the manor, as the party moves through the halls the walls are decorated with portraits or landscape paintings of the manor on a large expansive field. The rolling hills of grass touched by sunlight gave the paintings of the Manor a wondrous appearance. Further down the halls portraits of Jane and Tom were hung on the wall, proudly sitting in chairs and looking fondly outwards.

The brass frame of the portraits was perfectly polished with not a spec of dust on it or the canvas itself. However on closer inspection Tom’s portrait seemed to have suffered some damage and his last name “Dottery” has been scrubbed off. Either by accident or deliberately its hard to tell.



Thoughts

The idea is to drop hints that Jane’s real name is Crelion, not Dottery. Upon saying her name, and her hearing, the visage that she portrays disappears and her true form is revealed. Upon being revealed the house starts to break apart and her body starts to wither and fade. I think by having it be a puzzle rather than pure combat encounter it can be a fun way to end the adventure.


Thanks for joining me tonight. Tomorrow I will aim to have the Zine out for last weeks adventure. This week I will look at Soulbound adventure so be on the lookout for that. So make sure to come back tomorrow and the other nights this week and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Waking Phantoms

Welcome to Friday Fightnight, or maybe tonight should be called Fright-night as we deal with waking phantoms. Tonight is all about the creatures that the party see when they have their nightmares. Shadowy, real, nightmarish or common – it doesn’t matter what they are in statistics just how we describe them as the DM.


Waking Phantoms

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Tonight I am using Kobold Plus Fight club for a very specific reason. Looking for any creature(s) under CR1/2 (hard/ deadly) which each of the players will need to fight solo. It doesn’t matter what it is being from a could of goblins, kobolds to a single orc or gnoll as long as its enough to pose a threat to our level 2 characters.

This works across systems that have ways of balancing encounters as well. Soulbound you can have 2 warriors or a single warrior and a swarm of 3-4 minions appear in the dreams to haunt the players. Pathfinder would be similar as orcs and goblins but making sure that its balanced to be a hard or difficult encounter.

Remember that the creatures aren’t there to kill the party members. They are there to create exhaustion and prevent a full nights sleep. This is what pressures the players to solve the riddle and escape, but more on that tomorrow night.

As I mentioned earlier this week, (Haunting of the Inn) the party are attacked in their dreams. Each night when they go to rest they dream of a strange, or familiar place where they are attacked. This prevents them from fully resting as each time they try to get back to resting they simply can not. These creatures may morph from their allies or randomly appear in a door way but they need to be sudden and definitely out of place.

The maid that the bard was seducing may suddenly turn around and split into three goblins. Or the priest that the cleric was consulting may open a door and throw the party member in to be torn apart by zombies or skeletons. What ever the creature the difficulty doesn’t matter and death shouldn’t be the goal.



Thoughts

This weeks encounter should be a fun one. I have planned it to be non-deadly encounters with a deadly consequence. As we know in a few game systems without proper rest you don’t heal, can’t replenish limited powers (once per day abilities, spell slots, toughness or wounds, etc.). So that means for our party what I have planned is actually quite serious.

In D&D5e exhaustion caps out at 5 effectively. The final stage being 6 results in the creature dying. This means our party has exactly 4 days (day 5 they cant move) until they simply waste away into nothing. The 1st and 2nd day wont be a big stress but once they catch on what’s happening the last few days will be a frantic rush to escape. This will be fun.


Thanks for visiting tonight and looking at the encounters we have planned with the waking phantoms. This weekend we will ahve the finishing touches added to the adventure before we close off with, I hope, another Zine (adventure booklet!). So it’s been a big week and I am happy that you have decided to spend some time here with me.

Don’t forget that next week is the last week of the month week so I will have something a bit different planned and it should be good. And so I hope you don’t forget to come visit again and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe