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D&D 5E Dungeons and Dragons - CR 1 - The Firesnakes' Cauldron

Warlord Mal

Villager

I made this video for a CR 1 encounter. I will put my script for the encounter below. Any feedback on it is appreciated. I was hoping this could at least inspire other video encounters of dungeons and dragons as most videos out there covering dnd only do the popular content but not custom encounters. If I am wrong, I would also like to see other peoples content that does cover this. Thanks in advance!

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Dungeons and Dragons - CR 1 Encounter - Fire Snake's Cauldron
Hook - What appeared to be a cave that was safe from the winter blizzard, turns into a baking oven. The players found themselves trapped in a nest where Salamanders come to lay their eggs. The players hear the roars of the Salamander Young - Fire Snakes.

Fire Snakes are CR 1 creatures with a variety of defenses and offenses that make it a challenge, especially at level 1. They take half damage to all physical damage that is non-magical, are immune to fire, and deal fire damage to any who strike them in melee. Additionally, they have two attacks, both of which deal extra fire damage. We are going to take them up an extra notch by giving a Fire Snake a fire breath cone attack and another Fire Snake a poisonous bite, just to keep the players on their toes. But don't worry, the players will find some trinkets and events to make this easier.

Conflict - The players are trapped in a cave by a rock trap that the Salamanders placed to protect their nest. The players then start to realize that the cave is heating up, dangerously fast. The players must navigate the tunnels in the cave to escape, while being hunted by 3 fire snakes at different parts of the cave.

Battle Phases -
Phase 1
The players enter combat with a Fire Snake. They take 1 fire damage at the beginning of the round. The players feel that it is getting even hotter and will take more damage the longer they stay in the cave. Inform the players that they feel a cool breeze from the next set of rooms.

Phase 2 -
The players gain inspiration as they enter the next set of rooms and may spend a hit dice to regain hitpoints and regain 1 spell slot of choice as they are making progress with the puzzle. The rooms ahead are not affected by the increased heat at the beginning of the cave. The Fire Snake will chase them into here if they did not defeat it. If they did, they may take a short rest.

There is an obelisk here with runes on it. The runes can be read with arcana 13 or religion 13. They give fire resistance for 1 hour to one character who touches it. The obelisk cannot be used again for 24 hours. The obelisk's runes denote that it belonged to a duergar slave clan that that Salamanders use to take care of their young. There are no signs of the duergar in this cavern, at least recently.

Upon touching the Obelisk, the room begins to heat up again as before, dealing 1 fire damage, and then 2, and so on for each round. The players feel cool air from the next set of rooms.

If they do not touch the Obelisk but leave the room, the tunnels begin heating up again , dealing 1 fire damage, and then 2, and so on for each round. The players feel cool air from the next set of rooms.

Upon entering the tunnels to the next room, a Fire Snake crawls out from a heat vent from the wall. In the tunnels, the fire damage from the environment is not on. The Fire Snake has a fire breath attack action that deals 3d6(9) fire damage to all in a 15ft cone of the creature, half damage on dexterity save DC 13. This has a recharge of 5,6. It chases the players if they run to the next rooms.

Phase 3 -
Upon entering the next set of rooms, the players gain inspiration and may gain 5 hitpoints and may refresh 1 use of any class feature they have. Spellcasters regain 1 spell slot of their choice. The Fire Snake with fire breath will chase them into the room if they did not kill it. If they do, they may take a short rest.

This room contains another obelisk with runes on it. The runes can be read with arcana or religion 13. This obelisk contains the heat controls for the cavern. The players can cause the device to malfunction and freeze the caverns with a DC 13 arcana or religion. On a failure, the heat is permanently stuck and begins to rise, dealing 1 damage each round. On a success, the caverns start dealing 1 cold damage per round.

If the cold damage is turned, 3 Fire Snakes will flood the cavern, trying to flee. They will have half health. They will fight only if engaged in melee.

If the fire damage is turned on, 1 Fire snake will come out from the ceiling. This one has a poisonous bite that will put characters to sleep on a failed con save DC 13. This save can be repeated at the end of their character's turn.

Either way, the players will feel a fresh breeze coming from the tunnels as before. These tunnels have lessened effects of the freezing or burning of the environmental controls. The Fire Snake(s) will chase the players out and then flee into the wilderness as they are scared of leaving their nests. If the fire damage is turned on, they will go back into the caves.

Outside of the cave is treasure piled up from slain wanderers who did not survive. It has tooth marks and scorches on it. There is another obelisk nearby with more runes. It is instructions for the deurgar to take this loot from the Fire Snake young before they destroy it. - From the Salamander Guardians.

Loot - 346 gold pieces, 3 scorched scrolls of absorb elements, a +1 weapon that matches what the players would use.
Loot for level 3 - 1420 gold pieces, 3 scorched scrolls of any 2nd level spell, +1 weapon and +1 armor that matches what the players would use.
Loot for Level 5 - 2430 gold pieces, 3 scorched scrolls of any 2nd level spell, 3 uncommon healing potions, three uncommon magic items of choice ( one weapon, one armor, one wondrous item)

Advancing this encounter to 3rd level - All of the Fire Snakes will have fire breathing. The fire damage per round is increased at a rate of +2 per round instead of +1.
Advancing this encounter to 5th Level - All of the Fire Snakes will have fire breathing. The fire damage per round is increased at a rate of +2 per round instead of +1. One Salamander stands guard at the end of the cave, trying to block the party in while its young have a chance to feast on the party. Either that or it will take vengeance for its slain young.

Next Encounter Video - CR 2 - The Ettercap's Web Jungle - A gloomy jungle has been taken over by a druid ettercap, turning it into a slaughterhouse.
 

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