Saturday, June 27, 2015

Random Reasons for Robbing a Tomb

So the inspiration for starting this blog is the Random Reasons for Robbing a Tomb topic over at the odd74 forums (that would be for the original Dungeons & Dragons game from 1974). Been lurking at the odd74 board for several years now and have found a lot of inspiration for returning to this game of my youth and opening up its world(s) to my children. Anyway, there are some really great Random Reasons posted. My favorite may be #12 posted by Ritt:
The Ancients of the Forgotten Empire used an odd mix of chemicals to embalm their dead. How odd? After thousands of years of decomposition and mixing with mildew and scarab droppings the dust of their mummies is now an hallucinogenic drug. Some of the more decadent nobles will pay up to 100 gold for the mummy of cat, 200 for the mummy of child, 500 for a grown man.
I’m not going to claim my own ideas are up to the bar that has been set over there, but I do hope others will find at least a little something in my following attempts to add to the conversation:
  • Astro Zombies. Outside of Kaum, a fiery object has crashed into the catacombs of the ruined city of Nieur. The dead are rising and harrowing the town. A party has been organized to find the source and end the curse.
  • Swan Song. The faltering, once-renowned adventurer Stackrin has returned to Lyke, the village of his youth, and raised a band of young followers to raid the ancient Tombs of Do’gahs, the site of his first expedition some thirty years ago. There he had discovered a secret door in its northeast corner only to be beaten back by a gruesome, moaning thing. Three months ago, Stackrin finally encountered a sage who knew of such a beast and told him that its brainpan houses a stone-like gland that if harvested will allow its possessor to wield the power of life and death itself.
  • Sacrifice Games. Every three years a male and female between the ages of fifteen and seventeen are chosen at random to be marched out to the countryside, handed a waterkskin, a pointy stick, and a half dozen torches, then sent ceremoniously into Éhcilc’s Tomb, a seemingly endless subterranean maze overrun with creatures of the night. The ostensible goal is to return with the Whim Stone, a supposedly unique crystal-blue gem said to possess magical powers that will, among other things, end the Sacrifice Games.  
  • Braineaters. The mad wizard Oznog is keeping a pair of mysterious monsters in his dungeon and requires a constant supply of human or humanoid brains to feed them. Besides being mad, Oznog is moody and miserly. He will bargain shamelessly, and if he already has any sort of supply at all he will walk away from a deal. On the other hand, a rare treat such as fresh elf brain is sure to fetch 100–400 coins.  
  • Dawn of the Dead Ringers. Strange things are afoot at the Circle Kairn where the worshippers do not seem to be returning the same as they arrived. There are rumors that the Kairn priests are replacing people with dopplegängers under their control. Is it true? Are they plotting to take over the village of Dodgenhammer? If so, why? Boils and boggarts, damned if you know. You and your friends decide to scavenge some tombs for whatever valuables you can find and get the hell out of Dodgenhammer.

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