It starts on the horizon, creeping over the land. The storm clouds are huge. They fill the sky. They are moving this way; relentless like the tide, faster than they have a right to. They are dark, so dark to be nearly purple. The rain begins to fall near you. You hear it hit the ground. It hits like bullets. The wind gusts; getting in between a person and their warmth. There is thunder that deafens you. It rolls forth like a stampede. The lightning brings the suns brightness for a moment, before plunging you back into the dark.
"What do you do now?"
Black Christmas. The Elf Kicking Butt and Taking Numbers with Toys and Candy Movie, coming to a game table to you Next Christmas. With a tag line like that, who would not want to play it?
The point of the submission is quite simple: man vs nature is a common conflict in fiction, but not so much in gaming, this submission is a step to correct that.
The players have possession of a simple book. It seems like just a curiosity. Then everyone came out of it and things got…. complicated.
In the middle of Noplace, which is just a bit south of NoWhere, there is a village. It seems calm, almost deserted. Eventually the furitive glances from boarded windows, people scurrying off the streets, and a few toughs keeping a careful eye on the strangers, will express the tension that can be cut with a knife.
A great Evil has settled across the land. A sage of your acquaintance thinks he have a solution. He found several references to an older tome of healing that details such a crisis and gives a solution. The Tome of Klorak. However, all copies were destroyed a century ago, as the clerics call him a heretic. One copy might remain. It is in the royal library in the lost city of Asylum.
Once a year, the army rounds up the Mad and takes them to the City of Asylum. While you are travelling on the road, you encounter an army unit escorting 30 insane people dressed in tattered clothes. Yet one might not be mad….
Something strange has infected the land. Plants and Animals are taking on the characteristics of other plants and animals. Many are harmless, others have become monsters. The effect has spread from the near by wilds and into the populated areas. The first person has been infected by this strange malady.
With a huge number of sacrificial victims, another realm long ago secretly bound a Prince of the land spirits, Iorstonn by name, thus ensuring the fertility, and improving the magical defences, of their realm. But binding that Prince to one spot has disrupted the weather and magical patterns (ley lines?) over half the continent. Things have become bad enough that a coalition has been formed to rectify the situation, once divinations have established the cause.
Your party is one of the teams assembled to do the rectification: find the binding object and steal it ("so that we can destroy it here in our realm, of course"...*) or destroy it over there. Presumably the Prince will be grateful to his rescuers and angry at the binders, but with a greater spirit like Iorstonn one can never be sure: such beings are "tricksy".
* Of course, the rulers of our realm might want to control Iorstonn for their own ends...