Room One: Entrance
The entrance to the Shrine of the Fallen God is hidden behind a wall in the basement of the building. This building could be a tavern or home, or anything of the like, and the god could be any evil deity really. Opening the entrance requires that the PC's discover the secret door, and then figure out its opening mechanism. It could be a torch scone that is pulled, a bottle of wine that is pushed, or perhaps a floorstone is depressed.
Room Two: Puzzle or Roleplay
Once the PC's have entered the actual first chamber, they will enter the cultists barracks so to speak. This room is where the cultists sleep and also welcome other members of the order. They also keep watch. These cultists can be spoken to and possibly tricked into thinking the PC's are worshippers or followers of the god himself.
If however the cultists are not fooled or tricked, they will attack the PC's. There is one visible door in the back of the chamber, and that door is locked and trapped. The cultists hold the key, which bypasses the trap itself. The PC's can gain entrance by tricking the cultists, or killing them.
Room Three: Trick or Setback
This chamber is a room with a large statue of the God. This statue houses the way down to the sacrifical room. There is no visible door in this room as it is hidden under the statue and is found via a secret door on the back of the statue. The statue is also a guard post for the familiar of the head cultist. If the cultists have been tricked, they will enter first and say a specific code phrase which will let the familiar know they are friends. If the code word is not spoken, the familiar will flee down the passageway to Room 4 and let the Head Cultist know intruders have entered, allowing him to prepare for battle.
If the PC's have made friends with the cultists/tricked them, they will open the way down, and the familiar will stay in the statue.
Room Four: Big Battle
This is the sacrificle chamber of the outpost. When the PC's arrive, the head cultist is getting ready to sacrifice someone. To really hit home, make the victim someone the PC's know or love or have made friends with. If the PC's have tricked the cultists in Room 2, they will come with them down to this chamber. The victim is strapped to an altar in the center, and behind that stands the head cultist. Behind the cultist is a door to his bedchambers. If the cultists have come with the PC's they will inform the head that these PC's are friendly, and he will offer to let them watch the sacrifice. If the PC's attempt to stop him, and unless they are evil they should, the cultists will attack, and he will still attempt to sacrifice the victim. Due to the ritual of sacrifice it should take at least 2 rounds so that the PC's have a chance to save the victim. After a few rounds of combat, the familiar will come down and join in.
If the PC's let him sacrifice the victim, or do not stop him from doing so, the entire room will be infused with dark energy which will surpress the PC's special attacks and abilities. This makes the battle that much harder. Should the PC's interrupt the ritual, then this does not occur.
If the familiar has informed the head cultist of the PC's arrival, when they arrive they find that he is already halfway through the ritual, and he will mock them, taunting them and letting the victim plead for his or her life. The familiar will stay in the room as well, ready for combat. If the PC's are able to stop the cultist they can then rescue the victim.
Room Five: Reward or Twist
This room is the Head Cultists private quarters. Stored here are spare clothing, a bed, and a desk and bookshelf. The bookshelf has various tomes on demons and dark powers. The desk holds the cultists diary. Upon reading it they will discover that this was but one cell of cultists, and that there are more spread out in other towns. The diary might also detail more about the god itself, and its plans that it has reveled. Perhaps one of the cells could be in a PC's home town which would make them want to revisit it, and see if any strange occurences have happened.
In association with Johnn Four, and all the fine folks subscribed to his Roleplaying Tips Weekly mailing list at, we bring you our first collaborative Quest.
Room One: Entrance and Guardian - There needs to be a reason why your dungeon hasn’t been plundered or why your adventurers are the ones for the job.
Room Two: Puzzle or Roleplaying Challenge - A trial that cannot be solved by steel alone.
Room Three: Trick or Setback - Build tension through tricks and setbacks and give them a double-dose of gameplay such as more combat or another roleplaying challenge.
Room Four: Climax, Big Battle or Conflict - The final combat or conflict of the dungeon.
Room Five: Reward, Revelation, Plot Twist - The dungeon is complete but what is it about this dungeon that made it different or memorable. What kind of mystery have they discovered, what kind of reward have they won, and what kind of information have they recovered?
Submissions to the quest will each earn an extra 15XP can be inputted on the site as normal or can be emailed to Johnn at roleplayingtips.com.
Prizes for this quest include a D&D Icons Gargantuan Black dragon from Legend Games, MyInfo Personal Reference Software licenses from Milenix Software, DCC #46 Book of Treasure Maps – DCC #$7 Tears of the Genie - #50 Vault of the Iron Overlord from Goodman Games, and 1 on 1 Adventures #5 Vale of the Sepulcher - #6 Shroud of Olindor - #7 Eyes of the Dragon - #8 Blood Brothers - Advanced Adventures #3 Curse of the Witch Head from Expeditious Retreat Press. Winners for these prizes will be chose randomly so every submission has an equal chance of winning. Also, all the quest submissions will be combined and edited with what the folks at Roleplaying Tips come up with and they all will be offered back to the community.
------------ Strolen's Citadel Quest, Five Room Dungeon was an awesome collaborative success. The total amount of quest submissions between Johnn's Roleplaying Tips and the Citadel was a whopping 87 Five Room Dungeons! The winners of this set were chosen randomly so congratulations to all. But here are those that won a gift from the sponsors: Gillian Wiseman Tyler Turner Nik Palmer Daniel Burrage Uri Lifshitz Clayton Blanchard Jean-Christophe Pelletier Jason Kemp Pirate Queen Wulfhere Valadaar Thewizard63. Congratulations to Everybody!!!
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? Responses (12)
Updated: updated the summary for a bit more flair is all.
A worthwhile little cyst of evil! I appreciate how you made sure it was "generic", able to be easily "plugged into" any setting.
I suspect that the cult doesn't keep anything incriminating in the first portions of the hidden shrine, so intruders or guardsmen that violate their sanctuary may be fooled into thinking they're innocuous.
"They seemed kind of unsavory, Captain, but I don't think they're the ones abducting girls for sacrifice..."
I did not give any information regarding what would happen should the PC's actually WANT the dark god to succeed. Then again I dont run evil games... Oh well I am sure the GM could think of something!
(From the chat yesterday:) An interesting dilemma would be for the cult's victim to be someone that the PCs already despise, so that they're tempted to let the cult finish its sacrifice...
"I'm sorry, Captain Strongold, but after you framed us for treason, we kind of lost our motivation to save you from the cultists of Bloodthorn. Bye, bye!"
Alternatively, one of the cultists could be needed to complete a prophecy or otherwise save the land. The player characters might be forced to make a deal with the cult in order to prevent a worse evil from rising...
"Only the Death Rite of Bloodthorn will keep the arch-demon Ethalioc within his prison! Dare you allow the terror of ages to escape?"
Nicely done and superbly plug-and-play.
A pretty standard "beat up the evil cultists" type dungeon and thus something of a cliché, but nicely done for all that. Besides, we all need to beat up a few evil cultists once in a while.
As already commented: nicely generic and easy to plug into almost any campaign, just the sort of thing this site is all about.
Not particularly original but a good implementation of an old standby, and a perfectly honourable first post to boot.
3½ / 5 I think.
Nicely done Stomphoof and keep up the good work.
Not much to add beyond what has been already said.
Welcome aboard indeed!
So, let's have a look at what hasn't been said yet... hmmm... oh, right, you could add a little bold on the rooms' titles!
Other than that, it's an okay submission. Sadly, the occasional evil cult is a must for any self-respecting game. ;)
Good standard Evil Cult submission.
3.25 - I like that it's generic. which adds to a "Good Solid Idea".
Not too much that's unique, but a must for a submission group.
I like it-*imagines a Ma-O cell in Acqua*
Updated: Made the room names Bold