Demonic Pipe Organ
Mora stepped up to the wicked-looking pipe-organ; the carved demonic head which it was made from leered silently at him. Sweating with anxiety, Mora looked back to his friends before swallowing hard and shakily bringing his fingers to the ivory.
Mora pressed the keys down into several minor chords, and a thunderous peal of music echoed, sounding mockingly similar to a church. Suddenly, the eyes of the carved head lit up with fire, and with a *WHOOSH* a pillar of flames burst into life around Mora. The man's screams were cut short after just a second and the fire disappeared just as quickly. Mora was gone.
After a moment of shocked silence, Mora's friends cheered excitedly.
This puzzle is part of my Diabolist quest requirement (http://strolen.com/guild/index.php/topic,6502.0.html), and is a take on Malisonxpert's sub (http://strolen.com/viewing/Chapel_Pipe_Organ)
Looming enigmatically at the far end of an underground chapel, this Pipe Organ is carved into the shape of a massive, wicked demonic skull in the natural stone wall, with metallic pipes spearing out from it and jutting up to the top of the room. The keys are of bone and lie within the gaping demon's mouth, and the stone head has been painted with swirling sigils and runes. The sight of the organ is very unsettling.
Created by a cult whose name is long lost in history, the Demonic Pipe Organ was made by their greatest occultist, Maladach, who also had a penchant for the theatrical. The man crafted this organ as a conduit between the mortal realm and the infernal. The magic entwined in the Organ allow a link to be established with the infernal realm, allowing communication and even travel to the hellish place.
Maladach knew that this was not something which just anyone should be able to do, so he created many failsafes in which to prevent people from attempting to successfully use the Organ.
When chords are played on the organ, random negative effects occur.
- Several wicked imps appear, summoned by the organ to attack and harass the PC's. (Take your pick out of these if you wish! http://strolen.com/viewing/30_Imps )
- Hellish flames spew out of the organ pipes in a cone, causing PC's in range to take a reflex save or be burned!
- The demon head suddenly flexes into life and it's jaws snap shut; the player of the organ must take a reflex save to jump back or be bitten. After the bite, the jaws will open again, and the head will become still once more.
- The smell of rot and sulphur blows out from the pipes, nauseating the entire party.
- A powerful demon is summoned into existence at the rear of the chapel. Simultaneously, all the candles in the room are extinguished with a 'whoosh!'.
- Add your own to suit your party!
The Desired Effect: When the correct chords are played, the player (or the entire party if the GM wishes) who plays the chord is suddenly engulfed in flames! The flamed disappear after a couple of seconds though, and so does the PC! They have been transported to the Infernal Dimension (Hell or equivalent!). The main purpose of this organ is to do this. The downside, is that there is no organ on the other side! PC's must find their own way back out.
Where the PC's appear is up to the GM's discretion.
Help discovering the chords:
- A piece of sheet music dominant with the correct chords could be found on the corpse of a cultist from another room of your dungeon; the use of which may not be apparent until the PC's enter the chapel. I hope they kept it!
- Likewise, several crazed cultists could be heard earlier in the dungeon, humming the required chords for the organ if the PC's take the time to listen.
- The pipes that play the correct notes seem slightly more worn than the others; PC's could link those to the correct chords.
- Finally, if all else fails, a successful perception check may find that several keys on the Organ are more worn than others. A bit of trial and error later and they may be able to find the correct chords.
There's only two major uses for this that I can see.
The PC's are seeking out the Organ: The PC's are aware of the Organ and it's uses, and need to get to the Infernal realm. They fought their way down to this chapel to use the Pipe Organ, but still need to find the correct keys.
The PC's don't know of the Organ's powers: The GM can throw this at the PC's as a nasty twist to their dungeon: he can plant this at the bottom of a dungeon they were running and encourage them to work out the puzzle; perhaps hinting at secret doors and possible treasure. When the correct chords are played, have the entire group transported to a hellish realm against their will! Seconds ago they were thinking of all the loot and XP they were going to get for finishing the dungeon, but now they must find their way out of a land infested with demons!
This can be placed at the bottom of any dungeon you wish, really - it doesn't have to be a part of the storyline or theme of the dungeon above - perhaps it has been sitting here for centuries before, and other denizens have since taken up residence.
This time of year often brings the summer doldrums to the Citadel. A time of slow updates and intermittent submissions. We may have passed the worst but until the summer ends, the weather changes and school starts again we may not have the action we sometimes have.
Because of that, we are holding the Doldrum Quest. I wanted it to be pretty open to most anything so we will attach it to the Guild quests again to allow people to branch out how they want. This also adds some incentive to join and progress in the Guilds. So go join a Guild now and if your submission goes towards your Guild accomplishments, it can go towards this quest as well.
Get us clear of the Summer Doldrums by joining the quest!
Upon correct cord played the demon head grotesquely animates de-hinging its massive maw now agape and akin to a portal, sulfurous fire belching from the skulls nostrils and eye-sockets. An inky miasma fills the void between its jaws.
I would re-purpose this infernal device in my campaign to be used to strike at the very heart of evil giving my holy party of zealots a quest to secure this contraption made from malice and set up a forward command post in hell itself. I would add a knowledge check to secure the race of demon the organ's skull was made out of and have them create a shrine hell-side as a way-point home. Having to find kill and harvest said demon while in hell to do so of course.
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? Responses (14)
Update: Added some Horizontal Rules to try and help space the sub out. Dang thing >:|
I like it. Magical demonic organ, corrupting the ideal of the angelic organ of the church. Perhaps carved from a REAL demons skull? The pipes from its bones?
For kinder DM's, you could make a gate instead of instant transport (but still no way back). This allows for only some of the people present to go, without raising the issue that the unwary group might think the person who triggered it died. Speaking of which, that made the intro kinda gruesome.... nice job.
*snigger* Organ... Ehrm. :P Maybe a Dice table would be useful for this, 1 to summon the imps, 2 for hellish flames etc. I happen to own a synthisizer, so that's another interesting option, labeling some keys and go to town. It would have to wait till a later portion of the campaign though, as the Infernal realm is no walk in the park, especially with no apparent way back. Good one.
Oh and Strolen fixed the editor, so you should be able to clean it up now, if you want.
My only real comments on this were cosmetic, and already given in flashchat. Here, have a vote.
This needs to be the focal point of a Roger Corman 1980s blood and boobs horrorfest.
As someone who has gm'd several (ancient) campaigns in the Nine Hells, i find this a refreshingly original way to get there, as opposed to your standard 'gate' or 'pit'!
Also, as opposed to Roger Corman, I see this as a perfect Dario Argento movie!! With blood and boobs of course. And nuns. And Demons. And an ever-so-innocent, young and naive American concert pianist, visiting Florence or Rome. He becomes infatuated with a mysterious woman who is on the run from some demon-loving-cultist types, as she is in possession of a bizarre musical composition notebook....
Dammit, man, you can't just stop there
Yes Muro - keep going!:)
This is interesting, but would need the right game and players to use.
Id use it with the demonic appearance toned down, or perhaps hidden until it is played with intensity by someone who knows how to play.
I will definitely be re-purposing this into one of my campaigns as described above ^-^ <3
The greatest compliment that can be received is knowing that someone's used my stuff :) That's why I write here, and it inspires me to write again. Thanks Father Stabbingston! I would love to know how it's received!
definitely using this in my 5e campaign, I love this originality and I'm definitely going to find a way to add a real shock factor to this
Going to steal this one for my campaign!