Monday, September 9, 2013

Jacob's Tower, Level 3: Corridors and Chasms

Level 3: Corridors and Chasms
15,200xp / Max 13,076 gp (3.5 - 4.5 Hours)

Caution is the name of the game in Corridors and Chasms. The PCs should stick together, stay alert, and look out for each other. Level 3 features small hallways and tight corners, so creativity will become a necessity in battle tactics. Four ghosts haunt these halls, and our PCs will learn that social skills are useful even inside Jacob’s Tower. Another important lesson: Bring a rope!

Room 1: Entrance

A steel spiral staircase leads incongruously into the dingy, dirty, and dark entrance to Level 3. This gives the heroes a taste of what is ahead, so be sure to describe it fully.

Room 1 is small and damp. Rotting wooden beams barely hold crumbling dirt walls and ceilings in place, and there is the vague sense of an impending cave in. Strange smells suffuse the air, and a rich earthy scent fills the PCs’ nostrils. The dirt ground beneath their feet is uneven and spongy, and our heroes get the sense that they are deep underground in some old abandoned mine.

Although the walls between corridors are thin and made of dirt, any attempts to dig through them will prove fruitless. Some strange magic keeps these walls in place and prevents passage.

Importantly, there is no light nor any torches, even though there are empty torch sconces every twenty feet or so. The PCs will have to generate their own light. Be sure to follow the rules for light, as they could have a great impact on what happens in this level.

Although the rest of the dungeon is pitch black, a vague blue light emanates from down the corridor to the east. It is the ghostly glow emanating from Billy in Room 2, and our heroes are likely to investigate it.

Room 2: Billy, The Feasting Ghost

Ghostly torches lit with eerie blue light line the walls of this dirt feasting hall. A long wooden table is set for a grand meal (2b) – crisped chickens wings dripping with fat, thick ribs drenched in sauce, whole pigs complete with apples, even cornucopias overflowing with the juiciest fruit. There are exactly as many empty chairs around this table as there are PCs, and our heroes must make a DC 10 Will save upon seeing the feast or be overcome with ravenous hunger for three rounds. Strangely enough, the feast is not in any way trapped. It will magically replenish itself if our heroes eat, but will cause no ill effects (except, perhaps, indigestion and lethargy). However, the PCs will probably be wary of magical feasts and will refrain despite the host’s coaxing.

At the southern end of the room is an intimidating 30 foot wide steel door with a heavy duty lock (2c). The lock is a combination lock with four spaces for numbers. There is a name scrawled beneath each digit which indicates the order to input the numbers: Eravyl, Durdam, Clobber, William. The correct numbers are: “7, 5, 2, 3” and the door will quickly retract into the ground when the numbers are entered.

The door itself is 30 feet wide, a foot thick of steel, and has a several high level magical protections which our heroes will not be able to breach at level 3. Attempting to open the door with the wrong code will trigger an arc of electricity to shoot from the door through the nearest PC in a 40 foot line, dealing 4d6 electricity damage (DC 20 Reflex save halves) to all in its path. If Billy is caught in this line, he is immune to the damage.

At the head of the table is a fairly solid apparition, a good looking ghost dressed in fine adventuring clothes. As soon as the PCs enter the level the ghost becomes aware of them, and will call out to them as they approach. He will introduce himself as Billy and heartily welcome our guests, encouraging them to eat but taking no offense if they do not. Billy is a handsome, gregarious human with a big smile who will eat and actually devour the replenishing food as he talks. He will engage our heroes in conversation, importantly asking where they are from and how their adventure has been so far.

As a GM, choose a town that all of our heroes have spent some time in. Coincidentally, this is the same town that Billy and his comrades are from! As Billy references specific people and places, he explains that he and his crew were an adventuring party who were killed by a wraith and then captured by Jacob’s tower.

Billy then explains that there are four ghosts on this level, including himself. Our heroes must gain a number from each one of them, then put those numbers in order to open the combination lock on the door at the southern end of the room. He then explains who the other adventurers are.

Eravyl is an Elven Paladin, a worshipper of the god Sarenrae (feel free to replace Sarenrae with a god from your pantheon). She will only give her number to a Paladin or Cleric of Sarenrae and our heroes may have to claim to have those religious leanings to earn her trust.

Durdam is a Dwarven rogue, a friendly chap with a heart of gold who enjoys the company of all, but particularly Dwarves. However, his death has made him lonely and to gain his number out heroes will have to gain his friendship.

Clobber is an Orcish barbarian, but a true coward at heart and particularly afraid of the Fey. Now that he is incorporeal he can no longer beat his enemies senseless, and our heroes will have to intimidate the number out of him.

Billy suggests that different bits leverage, including information regarding the town they are all from, could be used to assist in these efforts.

When the PCs have all the other numbers, Billy will let them know the last number. At this point, he will look the PCs straight in the eyes and say "It is one of these numbers: 1, 2, or 3." He will not repeat himself. The PCs may try to discern which number it was by analyzing the way he spoke.  Did he speak any number with accidental emphasis?  Did he stutter? Make a DC 14 Sense Motive check for each player without the players seeing the rolls.  Failing the check will reveal that the number is likely 2. Succeeding at the check will reveal that this number is probably 3. To hinder metagaming and guessing against PCs with low sense motive, any PCs with a sense motive of 4 or less will be totally flummoxed and not have any idea regardless of roll. The number is indeed three.

If Billy is attacked, he will at first tell them to stop. If our heroes do not stop, he will transform into a Wraith Spawn. If he is then killed, he will whisper the number “3” as he dies.

Room 3: Western Corridors

3a: There are a number of 30 foot chasms scattered around the Western Corridors. The sides of these chasms have a climb DC of 25, though by utilizing the corners the DC is reduced to 20. As always, climbing up a rope with a wall to brace against requires only a DC 5 climb check.

3b: In this section of hallway, some rubble in the ceiling is loosely held up by a weak beam. A DC 20 Knowledge (Engineering) check will identify the issue, and the GM should automatically make these rolls for anybody with that skill as they approach. If the danger is identified and communicated to the party, then the PCs need only walk lightly and hazard is averted. If the danger is not discovered, the first creature who weights more than 200 pounds with gear who passes by the beam dislodges it with his heavy footfalls. The beam cracks, dealing 4d6 points of bludgeoning damage in the form of medium sized rocks upon his head (Reflex 19 halves). Luckily, this structural collapse does not cause a full blown cave in, just a small rockslide.

3c: At the end of this hallway is a single 8 foot statue with the torso, head, arms, and wings of a dragon, but waist and legs of a Kobold. The statue has two rubies for eyes, each worth 200gp, which can be pried loose with a DC 15 Disable Device check or a DC 20 Strength Check. However, the statue is a Fireburst Statue, and will shoot flames the first time it is touched.

3d: A dozen steep stone stairs leads to a hallway that is about 10 feet below the rest of the level. Although the area looks innocuous, poisonous gas has been pooling here since the last group of adventurers. Any PC with ranks in Knowledge (Dungeoneering) should attempt a DC 15 Knowledge Dungeoneering check upon entering the area to notice the slight acrid scent as “Bitter Air” and let the other heroes know to hold their breaths. Every turn after the second that a player stays in the poisonous gas he coughs uncontrollably, gaining the staggered condition and halving his movement speed. Each round he must make a DC 11 Fortitude check or be dealt d4 damage, coughing up bits of lung and blood. Holding one’s breath negates the effects, although those who are already coughing find it impossible to stop coughing long enough to do this.

3e: At the bottom of this 30 foot pit, a long dead adventurer lies decaying. It will take a DC 30 Perception check to notice him without any clues, though our heroes may see him after they check out the treasure chest at 3f. The Adventurer has various minor goodies: two 50 foot lengths of Spider Silk Rope, a masterwork flute, a dose of Antitoxin, a Thunderstone, and a single bottle of half drunk wine worth nothing after months of being uncorked.

3f: A closed treasure chest sits at the end of this passage. Masterwork thieves tools lie near the chest, scattered about as if they had been quickly dropped. A DC 15 Perception check notices that the dirt has been stained with blood here, and a trail of blood leads away from the chest to the chasm at 3e. The lock, which requires a DC 20 Disable Device check to open, is in the shape of a skull. If touched, it activates an Acid Spraying Skulls Trap. The pickings of the chest are meager, a mere 75gp in strange, otherworldly silver coins.

3g: At the end of this corridor, our heroes may make a DC 15 Perception check to see a small hole in the wall with a diameter of about an inch. Through this hole they can make out a room with three eggs about 1 foot high and 2 feet wide. However, due to the magical nature of the walls, the hole cannot be expanded. The eggs are magically shielded, and will resist any spell or projectile thrown at them.

Room 4: Eastern Corridors 

4a: There are a number of 30 foot chasms scattered around the Western Corridors. The sides of these chasms have a climb DC of 25, though by utilizing the corners the DC is reduced to 20. As always, climbing up a rope with a wall to brace against requires only a DC 5 climb check.

4b: This corridor is a simple dead end, with nothing in it.  However, expect the players to spend a bit of time trying to find something.

4c: At the end of this hallway, a large wooden treasure chest sits locked. However, both the treasure chest and the ground it sits on is a Silent Image. Any PC entering its square make a DC 14 Will save or fall 30 feet into a chasm. If the adventurer makes the save, he must immediately make a Reflex 10 save to catch himself, or fall in the pit anyway.

4d: At the end of this hallway is a Wax Golem, which will immediately attack upon seeing our heroes. Keep in mind that the Wax Golem is immune to any spell or spell like ability that allows spell resistance. When the Golem is killed, a DC 10 Perception check will reveal a diamond worth 500gp in his remains.

4e & 4f: At the end of this hallway, there is an open chest with the key still sticking out of it. The chest looks like it has been cleaned out, and only two dozen gold pieces remain. However, the wall behind the chest is a Silent Image. If any hero touches it or interacts with it, he may make a DC 14 Will save to disbelieve it. Behind the Silent Image is a masterwork heavy steel shield (small) that has been lined with emeralds worth 750gp, and a masterwork falcata (small) inlaid with rubies worth 950 gp.

4g: A hidden door connects the Eastern Corridors to Room 10. Although it is unlocked, it takes a Perception 25 check to notice it.

Room 5: Precious Metals 

On the eastern wall of this room there is a short wooden table with at least 40 unassuming stones. To the trained eye, each of these stones is made of something different, from common quartz, to well crafted bronze, to Celestial Mithral. On the table is a small piece of paper, which says in common, “Touch only the most valuable.” To determine the most valuable metal, make a Knowledge (Dungeoneering) or Appraise check. When a stone is touched, it instantly transforms into an amount of gold equal to twenty five times the check. All other metals on the table turn to dust.

Room 6: The Spider and the Flies

As our heroes approach Room 6, they can hear the loud sound of buzzing. When they can see inside, immediately roll initiative. A Giant Black Widow Spider (6a) is duking it out with four Giant Flies (6b). Webbing covers the floor of this room as per the web spell with a DC of 14, but the Flies are able to easily hover above it. Three of the flies are engaged in combat with the spider, while a fourth looks on. This fourth fly is distracted by the fight, and rolls with a -2 Perception to notice our heroes come in. If the heroes engage in combat, the enemies should attack whomever is closest, favoring each other above the PCs.

Room 7: Eravyl, Elven Paladin

Hovering in the middle of the room, meditating, is Eravyl, Elven Paladin. She is a ghost now, and her corpse lies crumpled in a heap in the north east corner of the room (7a). Both she and her corpse are dressed in impressive white and gold armor, and armed with a sword and shield. If she is attacked she will turn into a Wraith Spawn, but whisper the number “7” as she is killed.

Eravyl is cold and distrustful, believing it possible that our heroes seek the victory over Jacob’s Tower for not altogether pure reasons. She is a Paladin of Sarenrae and will only give her number to a Cleric or Paladin of Sarenrae  If any PCs are Clerics or Paladins of Sarenrae then only a Diplomacy 5 check is necessary to convince Eravyl of the righteousness of their cause. Otherwise, some bluff checks are in order.

Two consecutive DC 14 bluff checks are necessary to convince Eravyl that the PC's are emissaries of Sarenrae and that she should give over  her number, "7." For each failure, the DC of the checks increases by two. If the DC ever reaches 22, Eravyl transforms into a Wraith Spawn and attacks. PCs may gain a +4 bonus to all subsequent diplomacy rolls by first making a DC 10 Knowledge (Religion) check to determine a bit of Sarenrae dogma. They may also gain a +4 bonus to all subsequent diplomacy rolls by first making a DC 10 Knowledge (Local) check, perhaps explaining what the Sarenrae shrine in town looks like. If the person bluffing is actually a worshiper of Sarenrae  he or she gets +4 to all bluff rolls.

If any of these bluff checks are a 20 or above, or if the heroes have no failures, then Eravyl will tell the heroes to check her corpse for useful items and take what they need. Otherwise, she will tell them not to desecrate the corpse, and will turn into a Wraith Spawn if they do.

Eravyl's corpse is wearing +1 full plate with ornate gold and white enamel worth 3000gp, a Longsword (15gp), a Tower Shield (30gp), a small gold holy symbol of Sarenrae worth 50gp, and a copy of The Works of Sarenrae worth 10gp. If the holy symbol is ever sold or destroyed, all gold in party’s possession weighs twice as much and Sarenrae will begin appearing in the party’s dreams until the act is somehow rectified.  Immediately before selling it, everybody in the party may make a Knowledge (Religion) 15 check to realize this would be a bad idea.

Room 8: Beneath a Graveyard

The dirt in this room is grayer than the rest of the level, and the air hangs heavy with the stink of death. The bottom halves of a dozen gravestones protrude from the ceiling at even intervals, and gray scraggly roots hang down and grow along the walls. A Strength 14 check will pull down a gravestone, which will either say the name of a PC or an NPC the heroes are acquainted with.

Six closed coffins lie evenly spaced in the room. They are dingy and cheap, but do not look old. The first person to open any one of the coffins must make a Will 16 save or fall prey to the Ghoulish Uprising Haunt as he believes the dead corpses of his friends spring from the coffins and attack him. In reality, the coffins hold only unknown corpses, each one clutching an item of his trade that act as masterwork tools for the relevant profession skill: An ornate pen (scribe), a sextant (sailor), a thumbscrew (torturer), a spade (gardener), a set of marked cards (gambler), and a rolling pin (baker). Each of these tools is worth 50gp. After the first coffin has been opened and the Ghoulish Uprising Haunt has taken place, the Haunt ends and the room is inert and harmless.

Room 9: Three Bridges

Three rickety wooden bridges sway uneasily over a 30 foot chasm (9d). To the untrained eye, the bridges are identical. However, a DC 15 Knowledge (Engineering) check for each bridge will reveal its carrying capacity. Failing this check will simply “reveal” that the bridge can carry at least 700 pounds. In reality, the northern bridge (9a) can carry 100 pounds, the middle bridge (9b) can carry 150 pounds, and the southern bridge (9c) can carry 500 pounds. Each bridge will break if the weight on the middle five squares exceeds its carrying capacity. Any spell that would light a ship on fire will also light the bridge on fire.

Walking across the bridge requires one hand, but a character may free his hands for other tasks with a an Acrobatics check of 20.

A DC 25 Perception Check will note dozens of small, fist sized holes in the northern wall.

When the second PC crosses the center of the room, a Swarm of Bats boils forth from the small holes in the northern wall and attacks the unlucky adventurer. While not normally a particularly hard fight, this battle may be made difficult if other PCs rush to help and exceed the carrying capacity of the bridge.

Room 10: Clobber, Orcish Barbarian 

A closed door separates room 9 from room 10. In the center of the room, the ghost of Clobber, Orcish Barbarian (10a) huddles cowering over his corpse. Around him 6 Atomies (10b) dance, teasing, singing, and generally torturing the poor brute.   However, they will stop when the heroes arrive and attack the interlopers.  The Atomies will not attack unless they get sneak attack, and will spend their time using invisibility or flying around to re-manuever.

During the fight, the ghost of Clobber brandishes his +1 Earthbreaker wildly.  The Atomies are used to dodging weapon, and will suffer no penalties.  However, any PC that moves through a square that Clobber threatens will suffer an attack to the tune of +8, 2d6+5.  Any PC that starts his turn in a square that Clobber threatens is subject to the same attack.  When the Atomies are killed, Clobber throws his Earthbreaker onto his corpse.

Once the Atomies are killed, Clobber will thank them for getting rid of the “creepy little people.” However, he will explain that he cannot tell them the number because if he does “bad little men will hurt Clobber.” Clobber isn’t the brightest bulb in the bunch, and speaks in halting, awkwardly constructed sentences missing articles and misusing idioms. Both he and his corpse are dressed only in a loincloth. Intimidate checks are in order to get the information from him.

Two consecutive DC 14 intimidate checks are necessary to convince Clobber to give over his number, "2." For each failure, the DC of the checks increases by two. If the DC ever reaches 22, Clobber transforms into a Wraith Spawn and attacks. The PCs may gain a +4 bonus to all subsequent rolls by making a DC 10 Knowledge (Local) check, perhaps explaining what they did to another denizen of town. Clobber is terrified of Fey, and the PCs may gain a +4 bonus to all subsequent rolls by first making a DC 10 Knowledge (Nature) check to describe some particularly gruesome Fey. If the person intimidating can speak Alko, language of the Fey, he can punctuate his threats with Fey curses to gain a +4 bonus to all rolls.  Gnomes and other fey PCs gain a +10 to these checks.

If any of these intimidate checks are a 20 or above, or if the heroes have no failures, then Clobber will tell the heroes to take his “club” and leave him alone. Otherwise, he will tell them to leave him his weapon, and will turn into a Wraith Spawn if they try to take it.

Clobber’s corpse has only one item: A +1 Earth Breaker worth 2340gp.

If Clobber is attacked, or if the earth breaker is taken without his permission, he will turn into a Wraith Spawn and attack, but whisper the number “2” as he is killed.

At the south eastern corner of this room lies a secret door that connects to the Eastern Corridors. Although the door is unlocked, it will take a Perception 25 check to notice it.

Room 11: Durdam, Dwarven Rogue

Durdam sits quietly in the middle of this room, playing a game of Dwarven Solitaire with a ghostly deck of cards. He is short for a dwarf, with a strangely short beard and big blue eyes. He is pleased to see our heroes come in, and will ask them all about their travels so far.

Durdam will explain that he is happy to give his number, but wants a bit of conversation first. As conversation drags on, it is clear that he just wants somebody to talk to, and may not ever give his number over. A bit of Diplomacy is in order to make him to quit dawdling.

Two consecutive DC 14 Diplomacy checks are necessary to convince Durdam to give over his number, "5." For each failure, the DC of the checks increases by two. If the DC ever reaches 22, Durdam transforms into a Wraith Spawn and attacks. The PCs may gain a +4 bonus to all subsequent rolls by making a DC 10 Knowledge (Local) check, perhaps referencing some mutual acquaintance. Our heroes may also join in a dice game with Durdam, where a DC 10 Professional (Gambler) check will gain a +4 bonus to all subsequent rolls. If the person speaking with Durdam is a Dwarf, or the person chooses to speak in Dwarven, he gets a +4 bonus to all rolls for reminding Durdam of his homeland.

If any of these diplomacy checks are a 20 or above, or if the heroes have no failures, then Durdam will tell the heroes to take whatever they need from his corpse. Otherwise, he will tell them to leave his corpse alone, and will turn into a Wraith Spawn and attack if they try and rob him.

Due to Durdam's unusually diminutive size, he uses small gear.  Durdam’s corpse has a menagerie of items, including a +1 dagger (2302), a buckler (5gp), a sling (0gp), Potion of Invisibility (CL3)(300gp), Potion of Reduce Person (CL1) (50gp), Three doses of Universal Solvent (150gp), an Ioun Torch (75gp), a Key of Lock Jamming (400gp), five helpings of Dwarven Fire Ale (250gp), and an Hourglass that times increments of one minute (20gp).

If Durdam is attacked he will turn into a Wraith Spawn, but whisper the number “5” as he is killed.

Room 12: Hatching Dragons

When our heroes open the door, they will discover two recently hatched dragons and one cracking egg. Ready for battle is a Wyrmling Black Dragon next to onyx shards of egg (12a) and a Wyrmling Brass Dragon next to a broken brass egg (12b). These two attack readily and without mercy!

Behind these two dragons is a hatching egg. Without interference, the egg will hatch in two rounds (using the hatching dragon's initiative). Out will pop a Wyrmling Crystal Dragon (600xp). The Crystal Dragon will be staggered for a turn, and then join the fight at full strength. There is a decent sized hole in the egg when our heroes arrive, and the Crystal Dragon can be attacked through it. The Dragon is considered flat footed while he is breaking out of his shell, and will not take any actions except to escape his eggy prison.

Consider applying the advanced template too these creatures if you think your party can handle it.

After the battle, the broken bits of shell can be harvested for 200gp.

After destroying the dragons, a 20 foot by 20 foot podium about 1 foot tall rises up in the middle of the room.  Once all heroes are standing on it, they are transported to the next level.

If our heroes are only playing Jacob's Tower and are now ranking up to level 4, you do not need to distribute any extra gold to them this level.

Sleeping: Morlocks

Each night our heroes attempt to sleep on this level, they will be attacked by two Morlocks as they doze off.  Each night they will be attacked by an additional Morlock: Three the second night, four the third night, and so on.

Bonus! Little Venecian has created this battle grid for Roll20. If used outside of Roll20, you may want to overlay a 70px by 70px grid on top of it.

You may purchase printable PDFs of the entire dungeon, including the secret final level and an expanded foreword, here for $9.99. If you have already purchased some levels of Jacob's Tower, we will discount that amount off your purchase.

Jacob's Tower, Levels 1 - 13 ($9.99)


  1. Hey, what would be the bonus gold for this level if if the heroes are playing only in Jacob's Tower and ranking up to level 4? (This is the only level that didn't mention the bonus gold at the end)

    1. For this level, the amount of gold you get (based on xp earned) is actually extremely close to the amount of gold needed to bring to you appropriate wealth by level However, I'll add a note on it.

  2. Hey man, you released the Campfire level haha, awesome!

    I made another map for virtual tabletops =), it's just as bad as the others, and it only took 30 times longer haha. It's 70x70 px again. I thing I'm gonna made the next ones a little bigger this time.

    Keep doing that amazing work man!, you're awesom =)

    1. Very nice! I think this is your best one so far! Added.

  3. This map has two 4b's and no 4c...? Or am I going blind?

  4. If i was just adding a character, a PC perse? How exaclty is that possible? (First time DM)

    1. You mean that you are playing with more PCs? To make the fights a bit more difficult, you could just add 2 to all of your die rolls. That's the simplest way to handle adding difficulty.

  5. I'm going to be running this level this weekend! Looking it over, what happens if the PCs manage to break all three bridges? Do they just have to go down the pit and then make climb checks on the other side?
    Also, just as a clarification, does Billy confirm the correct number after the PCs have obtained the other three or do they have to trial and error the numbers he gives initially if they fail the sense motive check?
    We did level 2 two weekends ago; it went really well. The players really liked the fights with the oozes and hydra, and I loved the opportunity the throw such an iconic monster at them so early in a way that didn't feel too brutal.
    I've read all of the levels and I seriously can't wait to run them all. Keep up the great work, man!

    1. Thanks, and I'm very glad you are liking it! Let me know how it goes!
      If they break all three bridges, then yeah, they just have to climb up the other side. But there is plenty of rope to assist in that from the bridges.
      Billy does not confirm the correct number - if they fail the sense motive check they might be shocked a few times.
      Have fun!

    2. They only ended up having to fight one wraith spawn (Eravyl), which was good. Our fighter did not like fighting an incorporeal being, even though he could hit it. Shaman liked it, because she could hit it with her channeling, when she usually doesn't end up doing a lot in combat.
      Before we started Jacob's Tower, I had attacked the party with a number of small fairies, and with this second one I think they'll be happy if they never see one again. Though, our Halfling swashbuckler was amused by being shrunken down to a tiny creature.
      They spent too much time talking so we got to the final room, but didn't actually do the fight yet.
      Oh, and some seriously bad rolls saw some people falling into the same holes multiple times in a row. I think because of that they didn't end up exploring the entirety of the level. They missed the southern chest, the wax golem, and didn't get to loot any of the former adventurers besides Eravyl, whom they killed. I think I'm going to calculate how much they missed and put a decent chunk of that in the room with the dragons to compensate.

    3. Great! Glad you enjoyed it. This is a good chance for your fighter to figure out what to do against incorporeal beings.

  6. I just finished running this level the other day. It was great!

    The group really enjoyed chatting with Billy, and the enchanted food had them very suspicious. The fights were generally very good, and for the first time, they didn't miss a single item!

    Though it took 3 sessions overall to get through, the overarching objective was simple enough to follow, and I think this level more than the preceding two had a plethora of opportunities for each player to show off their particular skillset.

    The Monk got knocked unconscious again, thanks to Clobber's club, and with shrunken items and irritating fairies everywhere, the group had to rely on the Cavalier's mount to save him. This level really pushed the group to think on their feet.

    A particular highlight was the bat room, which one player decided to solve by rock climbing along the wall full of bat-holes. This went remarkably well, untill he crossed the halfway line and received a mouthful of bat and some fall damage.

    The fight with the dragons was well balanced, and the combined breath attacks became a real issue, but the group made it through eventually. I have loved the tower so far, and look forward to running level 4 in the coming weeks. Also, roll on level 13! My money is on pyramid level, with mummies and Pharaohs.

    1. That bat room is always hilarious. It's the simple things, like crossing chasms, that make for some of the funniest and most cinematic scenes.

      Billy's a fun NPC to run. Crazy that it took three sessions to get through!

  7. Serena? Do you mean Sarenrae?

  8. This was a rather enjoyable level as GM, and I think the players enjoyed it as well. In the end they kind of breezed through though so I decided to have the remaining 3 wraith spawns attack at the end. They got some rather interesting solutions to the puzzles (ex filling the chasms with create water, the rouge running over the middle bridge before it collapsed). The place wasn't too difficult even though I had advanced template on, although the end fight proved interesting and left the cleric asleep and the rogue with 9 con. I would say looking forward to next level but I wrote this after doing it so I guess looking forward to level 5.

    1. Glad that you liked the level! Creative solutions to puzzles is the objective.

  9. Well, that went quite well! You know, if by 'well' I mean 'the party nearly wiped.'

    So the biggest blow against the party came from the rogue failing his save against the black widow's poison 4 times and getting down to 6 Con. Most of the floor was pretty simple (they did not like the bat swarm at all), but the dragons nearly finished them off.

    The summoner was asleep for the full 7 rounds, and even though the black and crystal dragons were killed, the brass managed to knock both the inquisitor and sorcerer to 0 exactly. They swung to kill and missed, going unconscious. The eidolin was gone, and then the rogue got knocked out to a crit.

    What followed was the party desperately watching as the coup de graces fell upon then. Saves were failed, and then it came to the summoner. He made his save, summoned a small frost elemental, and got the kill! Though everyone else was dead. Hehe. They all had a good time though. Looking forward to the next one!

    1. Geez! Your party certainly have some exciting stories! Crazy! So pumped to hear what will happen next.

  10. 3.5 - 4.5 hours??
    I offer 11 hours split in two sessions!
    Human Fighter (Greatsword)
    Human Unchained Rogue (TWF)
    Ratfolk Ranger (Ranged)
    Aasimar Cleric of Sarenrae
    Elf Bard
    Halforc Alchemist (Grenadier)

    First Session:
    After some feasting and one try of the big dumb fighter to kill Billy, thy examined the big door. The fighter tried some force and after the second hit I chose to trigger the lightning bolt, hitting 3 characters.

    They took the northern way but chose not to jump the chasms, then heading to the bad-air-corridor which also lent to a retreat. After that the fighter triggered the haunt and then fell down one of the breaking bridges. The group again chose to try a different direction an ran right into the golem. The encounter was short, it took about 1/3 of the time the group spent then at the treasure table. Discussion over discussion followed how to use it and I made up 6 different valuables, one for every appraise-check and somehow managed to convince them, that I dindn't make them up on the fly.

    Indetermined the group didn't touch anything and went further to the battle against the spider and flies. The Rogue didn't make his saves and ended with 5 CON, while nobody had any lesser restoration ready.

    Eravyl was no problem, since the cleric was worshipping Sarenrae too. They were even allowed to take her stuff.

    -- break after playtime 7pm-2am --

    The group tried their luck at the bridges again, this time attacked by the bats. Having an Alchemist swarms arent what they are without, but even with the bombs it was a nice encounter.

    Clobber was fun! Since the group didn't have much trouble before and they were 6 players, I gave the Atomies the advanced template. This made it a very tough but also very enjoyable encounter. The Fighter took two hits from clobber and there were some critical hits from the fairies.

    After the fight the group tried to convince Clobber to give them the number, but didn't think about intimidating him. The fighter -being bored- tried to steal the earthbreaker and turned Clobber into a wraithspawn. The Cleric made his knowledgecheck and activated his sun-domain-ability. I declared the fight a win, since the wraithspawn had nothing left to do.
    Then they slept and were attacked by the morlocks, but the fight was over quickly.

    They now tried the bad air again and met the dwarf. The group enjoyed the roleplay but the fighter, knowing the clerics power, just touched the stuff on the corpse and another wraithspawn was covered in bright sunlight.

    We had a lot of fun with the corridor leading to 3g and 3f, because of stupid decisions and bad luck with jump-skillchecks.

    Asking Billy for his number, the players didn't think about using sense motive and I chose not to tell them too, because they were in a good condition. So they took 3 lightning bolts (they tried numer 1, 2 and then 7 before trying 3 ;-) )

    The Dragons were a nice encounter but they weren't much of a problem. I gave them the advanced template and a reach of 5 foot (and I told my players the dragons were the size of a human instead of a cat), but it didn't help much. I wish the encounter would have been a little more challenging, but it was fun even though.
    Playtime of the second part: 7pm-1am

    Summing up the group had a whole lot of fun in this level!
    Thanks a lot!

    1. Any account that makes me giggle is a good one! That's CRAZY that it took you 11 hours. You do have 6 players, but still!

      Sounds like a very careful group. As long as they are all on the same page, that's great! Looking forward to the rest of the adventure with you guys!

  11. Well, since I've last posted I've run this floor as well as floor 4. This floor proved to be the best challenge that they had up until this point, which was good. They actually had to rest for one night, so that's good! They weren't really that suspicious of the feast, since one of them had detect poison, so they had no qualms about eating. They enjoyed roleplaying with most of the characters, and actually managed to convince all of them to offer their stuff. They had the hardest time with clobber. They were pretty sure that they were supposed to use intimidate, but since none of them were very good at it they kept trying to use diplomacy, make logical arguments, or trick clobber into giving up his number. Eventually though they just rolled intimidate and rolled high enough to get the earthbreaker. Eravyl was super easy since the palladin was a worshiper of Sarenrae and literally couldn't fail the diplomacy check. Durdam was easy too because both the bard and the paladin have super good diplomacy. The hardest thing in the floor for them was the bat swarm, which gave them serious challenges since the only way they had to damage it was a single torch that dealt 1 fire damage and racial ability of one of the members (a suli). They got a good amount of damage dealt to them by traps but breezed through most of the other encounters. Took a really long time though (7 hours). they were super paranoid about falling in a pit, so they brainstormed for a ridiculous amount of time to find a way to avoid making a DC 5 acrobatics save, bc the paladin was bad at acrobatics and no one wanted to go anywhere without her lol! They even considered spending hours filling up the pits with food from the feast! Eventually though they got the table from room 5 and used that. The final fight ended up being super easy, as the dragons were just too fragile and didn't do enough. I had the crystal dragon break out a turn early and they still curb stomped it. Overall though we had fun!

    1. Nice! I think you are the only guys who actually partook in the feast! And pretty impressive that they convinced everybody.

      I always say that you can learn a lot about a group by how they approach a pit. There are numerous options, and numerous "pitfalls."

      Yeah, most people have said that the dragon fight is pretty easy. I should make that a bit harder.

  12. My players (All new) have finished level one and are going to tackle level two in less than a week so I've got preparations underway for level three and I've got a question about room nine.

    What does 9d represent exactly? I didn't see it anywhere in the description here or on the pdf. I had thought it was the bat holes but those are only on the northern wall, so now I've got to clarify, is it simply the chasm they can fall into?