Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hell South - Preview 1

After taking two days off from writing about Hell (well, a week actually - it was two days between finishing NOD 11 and starting NOD 12), here is the first peek at the southern portion of the Glooms.

2.58 Mechanical Misfits: A little tribe of mechanical men, refugees from the experiments of the Master [4.105], dwell in a ruined kobold fortress. The fortress is carved into the wall and consists of a guarded, fortified entry chamber (locked portcullis, the ledge in front of it is trapped to collapse, sending people 50 feet to the cavern floor). Beyond the entry chamber there are about twenty chambers, mostly small, inhabited by the mechanical men. The mechanical men number 40 individuals built of scrap. Most are about 3 to 4 feet in height. They are sneaky little devils, scavenging far and wide for replacement parts and metal that they can melt down and forge into new parts. They have a working forge and a fine crucible and are open to trade, but find it difficult to resist the temptation presented by adventurers toting metal.

2.106 Troupe: A troupe consisting of five drow overseers and their master, Qodvigo, a drow warrior-mage, and thirteen enslaved ophidian dancing girls. The troupe is gradually picking their way through the ooze-filled tunnel using picturesque wagons painted with phosphorescent paint (skeletons, owls, the words “Master Q’s Traveling Show”) and supported on four spindly legs, like those of an elephant only longer and thinner.

There are three wagons in all, each one carrying three or four ophidians huddled around a coal-burning stove, a driver and a guard. The ophidians wear torqs that have a permanent charm monster effect cast on them and tied to Qodvigo. Qodvigo’s wagon is the largest and contains a separate, raised chamber (about 6 feet long and 4 feet wide) containing his ritual objects and spellbook.

3.66 Worm Food: A tunnel in the wall here features a series of stairs downward leading to a branch of three tunnels. In the nexus there is a brass idol of Tricrucia, the petty goddess of forks in underground tunnels. The three-faced, three-legged, three-armed idol has all three arms pointing down towards the three different passages. One of the passages has an “X” carved above the cave entrance, the second a short series of three white marble steps down and the third the smell of rotting vegetation. The third tunnel is the safe one, the other two containing great lantern worms. At the end of the stinky tunnel there is a small shrine to Tricrucia containing sacred coins (5,100 sp, 710 ep, 5,400 gp) in bronze pots. If any of these are stolen, the thieves suffer a divine curse that keeps them from ever knowing their way under-ground, at least until the treasures are restored.


Image of Tricrucia by Chris Huth from Petty Gods - can't wait for that release!


  1. ...love the image, but I don't correlate Indian-inspired images with Hell... too many bad experiences with WASP Christianity, my own bias though. FYI: Lulu has another %20 off sale "Veterans305". I now have PDFs of all of your stuff, Mr. Stater.

  2. That image in particular has nothing to do with Hell, just a goddess I made up for another project - I needed an image, and since I think it's super groovy I used it.

    Read up more on Hindu myth, though, and I think you'll find a very sound connection to the concept of Hell (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yama).

  3. Very evocative post & very cool stuff!

  4. True. Lord Yama does preside over the realm of the dead, but his role is more of an administrator and re-educator, though-be-it a severe one. Lord Yama and his Yamadutas oversee the training of an individual for the next body, which can be gruesome in some cases. In any case, you're not writing theology; you're writing a damn interesting, and potentially fun, game setting.

  5. I like the Barlowesque nature of your take on Hell along with the weird races for the hex crawl (hellcrawl?), very inspirational. My infernal planes are inspired by various takes on hell from many of our cultures with a smidgeon of CAS and others thrown in for good measure.


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