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5E Enhancing "Rise of Tiamat" (Practical stuff to try at your table!)

[h1]Devilish Demands[/h1]


[h2]Accepting Lord Volmer's Offer[/h2]
The trove Volmer is revealing is a real one. It is also one that the Celestials were intending for a later use. It is a relatively minor cache, and Lord Volmer intends to distribute the items to good-aligned people, so none of the normal celestial responses will be triggered. It will, however, deprive the intended users of easily accessed resources. It also establishes Lord Volmer as a reliable source of information for the greedy adventurers that might seek him out.

Getting to the trove will be easy for the characters. The high levels of Undermountain have been cleared enough that there are few monsters left, and the ones that are are wise enough to leave adventures of the characters' level alone.
Ok so my group is around half way through Rise of Tiamat.
They have sorted out Varam, driven off Neronvain, killed Chuth, recused five young metallic dragons from near the well and there have been two assassination attempts.
They currently have sidestepped into stormkings thunder and will try to resuce King Hekaton in order to unite adn secure Giant support.
I have made Imyrith Male adn one of Tiamat's current consorts (in waiting).

The group met with Lord Volmer early but went on to other quests. Now that mag mage is out what level shoudl I put the cache on. I am thinking of Terminus and having a relationship between the planetar there and the cache.

Any ideas?
 
Hi,

Our party is 14th level and has already got both the dragons and Giants on side. Armies of the west are marching down the trade way about 50 days from the well of dragons.
Does anyone have ideas that I could present to the PCs that arent just side quests as it wont fit logically for them to go gallivanting off while the rest of the world are marching to war.

If there is a published module I can tweak to slot in that woudl be ideal. something to get them for 14th to 16th in time for the main assault on the temple.
 

jayoungr

Explorer
If there is a published module I can tweak to slot in that woudl be ideal. something to get them for 14th to 16th in time for the main assault on the temple.
Why not check out Palace of the Red Pasha?

https://www.dmsguild.com/product/180659/DMs-Kit-Palace-of-the-Red-Pasha?filters=0_0_0_0_0_45462_0_0

It's designed for slightly higher level characters, since it's intended as a follow-up to Rise of Tiamat, but it should be easy to scale back. (And actually, my group did this adventure at level 14, but they were pretty well optimized and had some magic items.) The storyline involves tracking down Severin's second-in-command and taking out a major Cult of the Dragon training ground and source of reinforcements.

The one tricky bit is that it takes place in Calimshan; you'll probably want to make a teleportation circle available to the PCs for transportation if you do this.
 
Last edited:

akr71

Explorer
^ or a Helm of Teleportation.

I borrowed heavily from Storm Kings Thunder around level 14. I really didn't like the whole Cloud Giant working for the Dragons thing in HotDQ, so I had Iymrith guilty of orchestrating Blagothkus' downfall.

The short version - after finding out that an ancient blue dragon was responsible for the turmoil among the giants, they traveled to her lair in Anauroch to kill her. This was all in the hopes of bringing the giants into the alliance and the final battle.
 
Surprise all! Not dead! But yes, it was a very harsh few years between then and now.

Anyway - *my* players are finally (!) getting to the point where Tiamat is viewable in the near term future. They've already voted to continue down into Avernus, so I'm looking forward to using Mordenkainen's.

Which means I've been reviewing my notes for the upcoming battle. And in the process, I've discovered that I've misplaced the modified Battlemap images (to match my write-up). Does anyone have a copy?

P.S. If you haven't gotten there yet, I've a few more interludes to post, as well as my replacement for the Mission to Thay.
 
Well, since I wrote up that little bit long before Mad Mage came out, any where at all works equally well. Ideally, it should be tucked in a little out-of-the-way corner.

When I ran it with my group, I didn't want to get sidetracked, so I left it's actual location more than a little nebulous. "After descending through the Entrance Pit in the Yawning Portal, you follow Volmer's directions to a small, dirt-encrusted alcove. You're sure this is the right one, but there's no door visible. What do you do?" is almost word-for-word. After all, this was just supposed to be a quick side quest.
 
Replacing Mission to Thay

Hi again all!

So, Mission to Thay suffers from a number of problems in my opinion. In no particular order:
  • The entire episode boils down to two rolls per player. There's no inherent tension/conflict, just a a series of rolls (i.e. a skill challenge), and with very little at risk.
  • Unless the players are familiar with Faerun already, they'll have no real idea who the Red Wizards are, or why Thay is scary.
  • For that matter, Red Wizards (een if they're rebels, but still evil) are members of the opposition. Why ask them for help?
  • Also, if its to give the Alliance/Players sufficient background wizardly help, why go all the way to Thay? The players already have an in with the Arcane Brotherhood through the resuce of Maccath.
  • It's short an under-detailed, leaving the GM having to "wing it" in response to the adventure, instead of the players' actions.

Its one (very small) saving grace is that it's SHORT, and thus doesn't interrupt the adventure's pacing. It's also VERY role-play heavy, which is great if your group enjoys it, but my group leans heavily towards combat bunnies.

Travel Times
[sblock]If you haven't already run this section, don't forget the Travel Times for the armies. By my estimate, there's roughly 21 days of travel from Triel (the most likely assembly point) and the Well of Dragons. Then there's all the travel for the armies to get *to* Triel. If you read closely, its apparent that the campaign is supposed to take significant game world time. Running the calculations drives home that it's most likely *months* between council sessions. [/sblock]

One final thing before I start the posts - my group has a lot of very experienced players, most of them are combat bunnies, and we have a few very, very, good tacticians. As a result, my defaut difficulty setting is *much, much* harder than 5e's. The group (a Warlock 15, Cleric 14, Monk 13, Rogue 13, Sorcerer 13) dealt with what I would consider a Very Difficult, possibly Deadly encounter. It was a CR 24 encounter. Depending on your group, you will want to revise the encounters, probably quite heavily.

Also, I made extensive use of Matt Woodfill's Elementals Expanded, Greater Elementals, Lesser Elementals, and Elemental Myrmidons. All are available throught the DM's Guild, and I recommend them highly.
 
Replacing Mission to Thay - Elementum Divinantor, Introduction

Introduction
At the Third Council Meeting, Bramallag Goldenvoice, the Arcane Brotherhood's representative, presents a mission to the Council as a whole:
As we know, thanks to this Council's efforts, the Cult of the Dragon has allied itself with the Dragon of the Dragon's Forge. This has allowed its mages to start producing enchanted items for its leadership and select agents. We have not been able to do so ourselves. Thankfully, our agents have been able to equip themselves to a limited degree through their own efforts. But as we near the final confrontation with the Cult's forces, this will not prove sufficient. Luckily, the Forge of Spells has recently been rediscovered.
At this point. if the characters participated in the Lost Mines of Phandelver, Bramallag thanks the characters for their efforts. He continues:
It has even been partially repaired. Unfortunately, the Collapse corrupted many of the arcane energies stored within the Forge, and working with it has proven ... difficult. As a result, while the Forge has been able to enchant items, their power is much less, only at the most basic functionality, and take considerably longer than the records detail - and even longer than the Cult's dragon ally can forge his enchantments. The records indicate that the forge is much more capable and speedy than this.

Through our efforts, the Brotherhood has managed to clease the Forge of its corrupted energies. This has made working with the Forge much safer and easier, but has reduced its power even more significantly.

After analyzing the records more deeply, we've discovered a way to recharge the forge with clean uncorrupted energies, which should increase the Forge's power, and greatly increase its efficiency. But collecting these energies is beyond the capabilities of my Brothers, so we would ask the aid of the Council's agents in this endeavour.

Once the energies are collected, and the Forge recharged, we of the Arcane Brotherhood will gladly supply the Council and its forces with as many enchanted items as time allows.
The resulting discussion is surprisingly swift - the lure of readily produced magic items is overwhelming, and the Council approves the mission, assigning it to the characters. After the session is over, Bramallag will approach the characters.
I'm glad you are helping us; your efforts in rescuing my Brother Maccath have shown that you are eminently capable. According to our sages, your quest for the energies will take you to the Highest Mountain, the Deepest Ocean, the Darkest Cave, and the Hottest Fire. It will take me a few days to gather the needed aids to enable your mission - which would you like to explore first?
Highest Mountain
Deepest Ocean
Darkest Cave
Hottest Fire

Rewards
One durable magic item of the character's choice, of Rare power or less, or 2 durable magic items of the character's choice of Uncommon (or less) power.

Reputation
Core Extractor destroyed: -1 Rep/extractor from the Arcane Brotherhood.
No elemental cores: -1 rep from everyone, -2 from the Arcane Brotherhood.
1-2 elemental cores: 0 rep
3 elemental cores: +1 rep to Taern, Neverwinter, Arcane Brotherhood
4 elemental cores: +2 rep. to Taern, Neverwinter, Arcane Brotherhood, +1 to everyone else.

Warning
[sblock]I ... ah... over-prepared with this one. BOY, did I over-prepare. The full adventure would maintain the campaign's tension about as well as an anime fighting-tournament right before the anime's big reveal. (Poorly, that is.)

To compensate, I gave my group tokens (matching the number of players) that they could use to vote for a single combat before each of the part's climax.
[/sblock]
 
Replacing Mission to Thay - Elementum Divinantor, Highest Mountain

Bramallag:
To collect the pure elemental energy of air, we will transport you as close as we can to the summit of the highest mountain in the world. Once there, you must climb to it's summit, then spread this large pre-made ritual summoning circle. Once the circle has be laid flat, you will then cast this ritual to summon the greatest of this world's air elementals. After defeating it in combat, you will use this tool to extract it's core, and return the core to here. Do not break or lose the extraction tool, we have only been able to create three in the time we have, and we will just barely have time to fully cleanse and purify one of them before your final journey.
The party is provided with:
  • a magical doo-hickey with a claw-thingy on one end.
    [sblock]
    Elemental Core Extraction Tool
    Wondrous Item, Very Rare
    When placed on the body of a dead elemental, this tool will burrow to the core of the creature, and extract it's core in one round, storing and encapsulating it for transport.

    However, the tool must be used in the immediate round following the elemental's death, before it dissipates and returns to its native elemental plane.
    It is also relatively fragile. It has hardness 10 and 30 hit points, but can be rendered inoperable (or free a captured core) by only inflicting 15 points of damage.
    [/sblock]
  • a large, rolled-up carpet, and a scroll
    [sblock]
    Pre-prepared Ritual Kit
    Tools, Kit, Rare
    This large carpet is 30 ft. x 30 ft. square, and is inscribed with all the required shapes, symbols, and runes to conduct a particular ritual, as well as having the necessary protections placed on it for the ritual. The included scroll details the associated ritual, and a small bag has all the needed materials to conduct the ritual.
    The materials need to be refreshed after each ritual. The carpet may be reused, but there is a cumulative 5% chance that it will be damaged beyond repair by the ritual itself.
    [/sblock]

Arrival
You arrive on the ice and snow-covered summit of a mountain, the wind wailing around you. The cold hits you like hammer blow. During the brief pauses in the wind, you can see a slightly higher peak roughly a mile away. A narrow path snakes its way across the saddle between the two peaks, connecting the two summits.

During combat, every round, roll for the environmental conditions in play.
[sblock]
Roll 2d8Environmental Effect
2Damaging Cold, Strong Wind
3 - 4Extreme Cold, Heavily Obscured
5-7Extreme Cold, Lightly Obscured
8 - 10Extreme Cold
11 - 13Extreme Cold, Lightly Obscured
14 - 15Extreme Cold, Heavily Obscured
16Damaging Cold, Strong Wind

Extreme Cold: Characters without winter clothing or cold resistance suffer 1d6 hp a round. Characters in winter clothing, or who have cold resistance are immune to this damage. Fire elementals suffer 2d6 points of damage a round. Water elementals have disadvantage on all rolls.

Damaging Cold: Characters without winter clothing nor cold resistance suffer 2d6 hp a round. Characters in winter clothing, or who have cold resistance suffer one-half this damage. Fire elementals suffer 4d6 points of damage a round. Water elementals have disadvantage on all rolls, and have their speed reduced 5 feet per round.

Lightly Obscured:The wailing wind whips the snow up and around the characters. Characters have disadvantage on all visual Perception checks, and can see no farther than 100 feet away. Ice and Air Elementals are unaffected.

Heavily Obscured:
The shrieking wind lashes the snow and ice against the characters. Characters cannot see beyond 5 feet; if they are attacking a target beyond 5 feet away, they are effectively blinded. Trying to see tiny creatures or objects on the ground require a Perception check. Ice elementals are unaffected. Air elementals suffer the lightly obscured condition.

Strong Wind:
A strong wind imposes disadvantage on ranged weapon attacks and hearing-based Perception checks. Non-magical flying creatures must land at the end of their turn or fall. Ice elementals are affected normally. Air elementals are unaffected.
[/sblock]

Going Down
Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Air Elemental, 1 Air Elemental, 2 Air Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Air Elementals
1 Greater Ice Elemental, 1 Ice Elemental, 2 Ice Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Ice Elementals
1 Greater Ice Elemental, 1 Ice Elemental, 2 Ice Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Ice Elementals

Total CR: 23; Total XP: 44550
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
AAW Games Map Pack, Vol. 1; Snow 1.

The Characters start at bottom of the map. The trail descends 5 feet for every 10 feet traveled. Characters moving faster than one-half speed must make a Dexterity (Acrobatics) check (DC 10) or fall prone and slide 5' down and to the right. The left edge of the trail ascends 10 feet for every 5. Characters must make a Strength (Athletics) check (DC 15) or fall back to the trail. The right edge is a 30' cliff, except for the frosted hillock in the middle (20' down). Climbing the cliff is a Strength (Athletics) check (DC 18). Falling onto the frosted hillock inflicts no damage directly, but if the character has fallen 10 feet or more, they must make a DC 15 Detexterity save or trigger an avalanche. If they trigger an avalance, they will take 10d6 damage. For every 10 points of damage, they are 10 further down the mountain, and buried under 2 feet of snow. Characters buried under 10 feet or more of snow can attempt to remove a foot of snow as an action or move action (DC 20 Strength save), or as a single full-round action (DC 15 Strength save). Under more than 5 feet of snow, the same saves remove two feet of snow. And buried under less than 5 feet of snow, the checks gain a +5 bonus and still remove 2 feet of snow.
Ice elementals suffer no movement penalties, need to make no Acrobatic or Climb checks (though they still climb at half-speed), and can stand on the avalanche ledge without triggering it.
[/sblock]

On the Saddle
Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Air Elemental, 1 Air Elemental, 2 Air Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Air Elementals
1 Greater Air Elemental, 1 Air Elemental, 2 Air Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Air Elementals
1 Greater Ice Elemental, 1 Ice Elemental, 2 Ice Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Ice Elementals
1 Greater Ice Elemental, 1 Ice Elemental, 2 Ice Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Ice Elementals

Total CR: 24; Total XP: 57200
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
The Risefalls FG Meanders Map Pack; Ice 49 - Crevasse

The characters enter on the path at the bottom left. The snow bridge slopes down at a 1:3 rise:run ratio, and can be divided into 4 sections:
From the entry to the peak before the ravine: Falling off the bridge ends 100 feet below. This section is destroyed if its is the site of area attacks inflicting 600 damage to their target (fire inflicts double damage).
Over the ravine proper: The visible path is 40 feet below the bridge. The bottom of the darkened ravine is 100 feet below, and slopes away at a 1:2 rise:run. Destroying this section of the bridge takes 1200 damage from area attacks.
The anchor on the far side of the ravine: The anchor faces the same falling circumstances as the ravine bridge. It cannot be destroyed.
Between the anchor and the exit paths: Characters who fall from this section face only have to deal with the darkened ravine.
[/sblock]

Climbing Up
Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Air Elemental, 1 Air Elemental, 2 Air Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Air Elementals
1 Greater Air Elemental, 1 Air Elemental, 2 Air Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Air Elementals
1 Greater Ice Elemental, 1 Ice Elemental, 2 Ice Elemental Myrmidons, 3 Lesser Ice Elementals

Total CR: 23; Total XP: 49500
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
The Risefalls FG Meanders Map Pack; Ice 38 - Mountain Trek

The characters enter at the bottom of the map. The path leads to the single safe exit at the top left.
The conditions here are incredibly icy. For the characters, just standing still requires a DC 10 Dexterity(Acrobatics) check without artifical aid (such as ice crampons) to avoid falling prone. Likewise, a similar check is required when receiving a successful melee attack. Unless they treat it as difficult terrain and move at a pace no faster than a walk, characters must make a DC 15 Dexterity(Acrobatics) check for each 10 feet traveled, or slide another 5 feet in their direction of travel. If a hasty character tries to turn while moving, the check rises to DC 20, and a failure results in the character falling prone and sliding 10 feet in the previous direction of travel.
The ravine at the bottom of the map is very deep and steep. It is only 10 feet deep at it's shallowest end, but drops to 20 feet just below that, and continues dropping 20 feet for every 5 of horizontal distance, until it reaches 200 feet, when the slope shallows to only 10 feet for every 5. Climbing the walls of the ravine is a DC 25 Strength(Athletics) check. Failure on any climb check means the character falls to the bottom of the ravine.
The cliff at the top right is only 80 feet tall. Climbing down is a DC 25 Strength(Athletics) check. The western end is blocked by a wall of ice. The northern slope of ice is only a DC 20 check to climb., and is a potential exit.
[/sblock]

At the Summit
You've done it. After an arduous climb, you've finally reach the summit you originally saw off in the distance. Unlike the paths to here, it is surprisingly clear of snow The unceasing winds shoving against you as you climb these last few hundred feet to the summit are probably why.

All elementals are aware of the core extractor and who is carrying it. They will attempt to steal, then destroy the extractor.

Map
[sblock]
The Risefalls FG Meanders Map Pack; Mountains 03 - Steep Spiral Summit Trek

The entrance at the top is 300 feet below the summit (the final spiral), which is relatively flat. The path climbs roughly 5 feet for every 15. What appears to be a cave is actually a catch basin that is completely filled with ice.
[/sblock]

You've reached the top. After a short rest, you spread the tools of the ritual out in front of you, arranging them in their proper places. As you begin the ritual a feeling of ... potency is the only word that fits ... fills the air. After a while, you can feel a small breeze spiraling into the center of the circle. By the time the ritual has reached its final stages, its is a howling, raging, wind. Then it stops, and surrounding you you see elementals appear, determined to stop the ritual.

Round 1
[sblock]
4 Air Elemental Myrmidons, 4 Lesser Air Elementals
4 Ice Elemental Myrmidons, 4 Lesser Ice Elementals

Total CR: 21; Total XP: 26800
[/sblock]
Round 2
[sblock]
4 Air Elementals, 2 Greater Air Elementals
4 Ice Elementals, 2 Greater Ice Elementals

Total CR: 22; Total XP: 38000
[/sblock]
The Boss Appears
[sblock]
Air Elemental Ancient

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 90000
[/sblock]




Air Elemental Ancient
[sblock]
Gargantuan Elemental, Neutral
Armor Class: 20 (natural armor)
Hit Points: 720 (30d20 + 120)
Speed: 0 ft., fly 150 ft. (hover)

Str: 20(+5) Dex:24(+7) Con:18(+4) Int:10(+0) Wis:14(+2) Cha:10(+0)

Saving Throws: Dex +15, Cha +8
Skills: Perception +10
Damage Resistances: lightning, thunder
Damage Immunities: poison; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Condition Immunites: exhaustion, grappled, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained, unconscious
Senses: darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 20
Languages: Auran, Primordial
Challenge: 26; XP: 90000

Traits
Air Form: The elemental can enter hostile creature's space and stop there. It can move through a space as narrow as 1 inch wide without squeezing.
Empowered Attacks: An Air Elemental Ancient's attacks are treated as magical for the purpose of bypassing resistance and immunity to nonmagical weapons.
Magic Resistance: An Air Elemental Ancient has advantage on all saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Actions
Multiattack: The Air Elemental Ancient makes four slam attacks.
Slam: Melee Weapon Attack. +13 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 23 (4d8 + 5) bludgeoning damage.
Whirlwind (Recharge 4-6): Each creature in the elemental's space must make a DC 17 Strength saving throw. On a failure, a target takes 15 (4d8+2) bludgeoning damage and is flung up 20 feet away from the elemental in a random direction and knocked prone. If a thrown target strikes an object, such as a wall or floor, the target takes 3 (1d6) bludgeoning damage for every 10 feet it was thrown. If the target is thrown at another creature, that creature must succeed on a DC 13 Dexterity saving throw or take the same damage and be knocked prone. If the saving throw is successful, the target takes half the bludgeoning damage and isn't flung away or knocked prone.
Howling Winds (Recharge 5-6): The elemental chooses a 15 foot radius within 60 feet. Raging winds batter any creature within the area, causing 19 (3d12) bludgeoning damage and 19 (3d12) thunder damage from the force of the sound the winds create. Creatures within the area must succeed on a DC 20 Dexterity saving throw. Failure means the target takes the full damage, while a success means the target only takes half the bludgeoning and thunder damage.

Legendary Actions
An Air Elemental Ancient may take 2 legendary actions per round. Each action may only be taken at the end of another's turn.
Healing Breath (2 actions): Each enemy within 60 feet must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, they suffer 26 ( 4d12) necrotic damage, and the ancient elemental heals one half of their damage. On a successful save, the target recevies half damage, and the ancient is not healed.
Vortex Pull (1 action): Ranged Weapon Attack: +15 to hit, range 150 ft., one target. Hit: 25 (4d8 + 7) bludgeoning damage, plus the target must succeed on a grapple check or be pulled into the Ancient's space.
Vortex Puppetry (1 action): Ranged Weapon Attack: +15 to hit, range 150 ft., one target. Hit: 25 (4d8+7) bludgeoning damage, plus the target must succeed make a DC 18 Fortitude check or be dazed for one round.

Lair Actions
At the end of every round, the Ancient may randomly spawn various elementals. Roll 1d6. On a 1-3, spawn 4 lesser elementals. On a 4-5, spawn 2 normal elementals. On a 6, spawn one greater elemental.
[/sblock]
 
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Replacing Mission to Thay - Elementum Divinantor, Deepest Ocean

Bramallag:
To collect the pure elemental energy of water, we will open a portal to the deepest depths of the ocean. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee accurate to precise placement of the portal, though we have minimized its erros as much as we can. After arrival, you must descend to the very nadir of the ocean, then spread this large pre-made ritual summoning circle on the ocean bed. Once the circle has be laid flat, you will then cast this ritual to summon the greatest of this world's water elementals. After defeating it in combat, you will use this tool to extract it's core, and return the core to here. Do not break or lose the extraction tool, we have only been able to create three in the time we have, and we will just barely have time to fully cleanse and purify one of them before your final journey.
The party is provided with:
  • a magical doo-hickey with a claw-thingy on one end.
  • a large, rolled-up carpet, and a scroll
  • Potion of Water Nativity (one each)
    [sblock]
    Potion of Water Nativity
    (a very dark blue potion)
    Potion, Very rare
    When consumed, the potion grants the imbiber water breathing (as the spell), a swim speed equal to their normal movement speed, and the ability to ignore all environmental effects related to water pressure and depth (except for light levels).
    [/sblock]

Arrival
The portal opens onto a rippling drakness. As you step through, the light streaming from the open portal casts your shadows down the side of the hill you are standing on, disappearing into the darkness of a ravine below. Behind you is an unfamiliar warmth. Turning around you see talk chimneys, rising from the crest of the hill, belching smoke into the water, and backlit by a strange red light. Returning to your view of the depths before you, only the first 60 feet are illuminated before you, and only the first 30 is brightly lit. Despite the quick dimming of the light, the water is surprisingly clear.

Deep Sea Combat Rules
[sblock]
Because of the unusually great depth the characters are experiencing, the following changes to normal combat rules apply:
  • All light ranges are halved.
  • Darkvision ranges are halved, unless the character spends his move action to attempt a Wisdom(Perception) check DC 15.
  • The character's opponents are all granted resistance to all bludgeoning weapons.
  • All attacks by the characters with slashing and bludgeoning weapons are at disadvantage.
  • Thrown weapons have a maximum range of the character's strength score, in feet, and inflict one-half damage.
  • Missile weapons have a range of 30 feet, and inflict one-half damage.
  • All fire-based attacks inflict one-half damage.
  • All lightning-based attacks behave as if they were area effect attacks, with a diameter equal to 10 feet per level of the spell.
  • If the characters are not otherwise protected, they suffer the environmental effects of extreme cold, and take 3d6 points of bludgeoning damage a round that overcomes all resistances and immunities.
[/sblock]

Additionally, the characters will encounter the following hazards during combat.
Deep Sea Combat Hazards
[sblock]
Roll 2d6Encounter
2 - 7Nothing
8 - 9Swarms of deep sea creatures are attracted by the light and sound. Lightly Obscured.
10Large swarms of deep sea creatures are attracted by the light and sound. Heavily Obscured.
11Deep Sea Current. All characters are moved 2d6 * 5 feet in a random (though uniform) direction.
12A Giant Shark (Monster Manual) is attracted to the combat.
[/sblock]

Entering the Ravine
Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Water Elemental
2 Water Elementals
8 Water Elemental Myrmidons
1 Water Wyrm

Total CR: 22; Total XP: 39900
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
battlemapt005.jpg, by Torgaard. (from a 5e resource thread on the Fantasy Grounds forum.

The ravine is 150 feet deep at this point. The characters enter at the top of the map.
[/sblock]

Following the Ravine
Encounter
[sblock]
7 Greater Water Elemental (one with max hit points)
12 Water Elemental Myrmidons
1 Water Wyrm

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 83300
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
Underground River, by Sukeet (from a 5e resources thread on the Fantasy Grounds forum)

The ravine is only 100 feet deep at this point. The characters enter at the left of the map.
[/sblock]

Exiting the Ravine
Encounter
[sblock]
3 Greater Water Elementals with maximum hit points
3 Greater Water Elementals
12 Water Elemental Myrmidons
2 Water Wyrms

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 84600
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
The Rearguard Map from Hoard of the Dragon Queen; repurposed.

The ravine is only 50 feet deep at this point, and opens onto the the "hollow" at its end. The characters enter at the top of the map.
[/sblock]

The Very Bottom
Map
[sblock]
The Idlewilds FG Meanders Map Pack A; Ocean 04 - Reef with Rock Pool

A simple flat area with hills rising on all sides. The characters enter at the bottom of the map.
[/sblock]


What were probably once cracks in the seabed have attracted numerous forms of the weird lifeforms that make the deepest ocean their home, building up, over time to a bowl of low hills. As you walk through a break in those hills, you can see the sea floor has slumped a little - this must be deepest part of the ocean.

Grateful, you take a short rest. Then spread out the carpet and begin the ritual. As you begin, the water seems to clear - you can see the far side of the bowl clearly now. But it continues to get clearer, and clearer, and brighter. Looking up you can see that you are at the very bottom of a miles deep chasm, with the miles wide top still being miles below the surface of the water. As the ritual finishes you feel, rather than hear, a crystalline gong ring, and you can see a lattice of waves racing away from you as the water once again returns to its original stygian darkness. In the circle before you stands a gigantic water elemental.

In the following rounds, the ancient elemental has forces that arrive, in addition to their own spawn abilities.
Round Zero
[sblock]
Water Elemental Ancient

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 90000
[/sblock]
Round 1
[sblock]
2 Greater Water Elementals with maximum hit points

Total CR: 15; Total XP: 11800
[/sblock]
Round 2
[sblock]
2 Water Wyrms

Total CR: 16; Total XP: 14400
[/sblock]
Round 3
[sblock]
2 Greater Water Elementals with maximum hit points

Total CR: 15; Total XP: 11800
[/sblock]
Round 4
[sblock]
12 Water Elemental Myrmidons

Total CR: 22; Total XP: 34800
[/sblock]
Round 5
[sblock]
1 Water Wyrm

Total CR: 11; Total XP: 7200
[/sblock]
Round 6
[sblock]
6 Water Elemental Myrmidons

Total CR: 17; Total XP: 17400
[/sblock]

Returning to the Portal
If the total time in combat from all the encounters is less than 10 rounds, the characters encounter a squid attacking the castle through the portal, blocking it.
Giant Deep Sea Squid
[sblock]
1 Giant Deep Sea Squid

Total CR: 19; Total XP: 22000
[/sblock]




Giant Deep Sea Squid
[sblock]
Gargantuan Monstrosity (Titan), Neutral
Armor Class: 18 (natural armor)
Hit Points: 472 (27d20 + 189)
Speed: 20 ft., swim 60 ft.

Str: 30(+10) Dex:11(+0) Con:25(+7) Int:22(+6) Wis:18(+4) Cha:20(+5)

Saving Throws: Str +17, Dex +7, Con +14, Int +13, Wis +11
Skills: None
Damage Immunities: bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Condition Immunites: frightened, paralyzed
Senses: truesight 60 ft., passive Perception 14
Languages: understands Abyssal, Celestial, Infernal, and Primordial but can't speak, telepathy 120 ft.
Challenge: 19; XP: 22000

Traits
Water Breathing: The squid can only breathe underwater.
Freedom of Movement: The squid ignores difficult terrain, and magical effects can't reduce its speed or cause it to be restrained. It can spend 5 feet of movement to escape from nonmagical restraints or being grappled.
Siege Monster: The squid deals double damage to objects and structures.
Hold Breath: While out of water, the squid can hold its breath for one hour.

Actions
Multiattack: The squid makes three tentacle attacks.
Bite: Melee Weapon Attack: +17 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 23 (3d8 + 10) piercing damage. If the target is a Large or smaller creature grappled by the squid, that creature is swallowed, and the grapple ends. While swallowed, the creature is blinded and restrained, it has total cover against attacks and other effects outside the squid, and it takes 42 (12d6) acid damage at the start of each of the squid's turns. If the squid takes 50 damage or more on a single turn from a creature inside it, the squid must succeed on a DC 25 Constitution saving throw at the end of that turn or regurgitate all swallowed creatures, which fall prone in a space within 10 feet of the squid. If the squid dies, a swallowed creature is no longer restrained by it and can escape from the corpse using 15 feet of movement, exiting prone.
Tentacle: Melee Weapon Attack: +17 to hit, reach 30 ft., one target. Hit: 20 (3d6 + 10) bludgeoning damage, and the target is grappled (escape DC 18). Until this grapple ends, the target is restrained. The squid has ten tentacles, each of which can grapple one target.

Reactions
Get Away: If the squid has taken more than 150 points of damage, it will use its Ink Cloud, taking the Disengage action as a bonus action.

Legendary Actions
The squid can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature's turn. The squid regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.
Tentacle Attack (1 action): The kraken makes one tentacle attack.
Ink Cloud (3 actions): While underwater, the squid expels an ink cloud in a 60-foot radius. The cloud spreads around corners, and that area is heavily obscured to creatures other than the squid. Each creature other than the squid that ends its turn there must succeed on a DC 23 Constitution saving throw, taking 16 (3d10) poison damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. A strong current disperses the cloud, which otherwise disappears at the end of the squids next turn. AFter releasing the ink, the squid can use the dash action as a bonus action.
[/sblock]

Water Elemental Ancient
[sblock]
Gargantuan Elemental, Neutral
Armor Class: 18
Hit Points: 760 (30d20 + 180)
Speed: 40 ft., swim 120 ft.

Str: 22(+6) Dex:18(+4) Con:22(+6) Int:9(-1) Wis:12(+1) Cha:9(-1)

Saving Throws: Con +14
Skills: Perception +9
Damage Resistances: acid
Damage Immunities: poison; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Condition Immunites: exhaustion, grappled, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained, unconscious
Senses: darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 19
Languages: Aquan, Primordial
Challenge: 26; XP: 90000

Traits
Water Form: The elemental can enter hostile creature's space and stop there. It can move through a space as narrow as 1 inch wide without squeezing.
Freeze: If the elemental takes cold damage, it partially freezes; its speed is reduced by 20 feet until the end of its next turn.
Empowered Attacks: A Water Elemental Ancient's attacks are treated as magical for the purpose of bypassing resistance and immunity to nonmagical weapons.
Magic Resistance: A Water Elemental Ancient has advantage on all saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Actions
Multiattack: The Water Elemental Ancient makes four slam attacks.
Slam: Melee Weapon Attack: +14 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 32 (4d12+6) bludgeoning damage, and the target is grappled (escape DC 18). The Water Elemental Ancient can grapple up to four targets. When the Ancient moves, all creatures it is grappling move with it. Creatures so grappled are vulnerable to Whelm.
Whelm (Recharge 4-6): Each creature in the elemental's space must make a DC 20 Strength saving throw. On a failure, a target takes 32 (4d12+6) bludgeoning damage, and is also grappled (escape DC 18). Until this grapple ends, the target is restrained and is unable to breathe unless it can breathe water. If the saving throw is successful, the target is pushed out of the elemental's space. The Ancient can grapple one Gargantuan creature, 2 Huge creatures, or 4 Large or smaller creatures at one time. At the start of each of the elemental's turns, each target grappled by it takes 32 (4d12+6) bludgeoning damage. A creature within 5 feet of the elemental can pull a creature or object out of it by taking an action to make a DC 20 Strength check and succeeding.
Downpour (Recharge 5-6): The elemental chooses a 15 foot radius area within 50 feet. Each creature within the affected area must make a DC 16 Dexterity saving throw. On a failure, each creature takes 13 (2d12) bludgeoning and 13 (2d12) cold damage as heavy rain pummels them. The heavy downpour causes any creature within the area to suffer disadvantage as if they were blind, though any trying to attack them also suffer disadvantage.
If the saving throw is successful, the creatures take half the bludgeoning and cold damage.

Legendary Actions
A Water Elemental Ancient can take 2 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. One one legendary action option can be used at a time, and only at the end of another creature's turn. The Water Element Ancient regains spent legendary action at the start of its turn.
Crush (1 action): One creature that the Water Elemental Ancient is grappling is crushed for 33 (4d12 + 7) bludgeoning damage.
Water Jet (1 action): Ranged Weapon Attack: +12 to hit, range 120 ft., one target. Hit: 36 (8d8) bludgeoning damage, and the target is knocked prone if it fails a DC 20 Strength saving throw.
Healing Currents (2 actions): Each enemy within 60 feet must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, they suffer 26 ( 4d12) necrotic damage, and the ancient elemental heals one half of their damage. On a successful save, the target recevies half damage, and the ancient is not healed.

Lair Actions
At the end of every round, the Ancient may randomly spawn various elementals. Roll 1d6. On a 1-3, spawn 4 lesser elementals. On a 4-5, spawn 2 normal elementals. On a 6, spawn one greater elemental.
[/sblock]

Water Wyrm
[sblock]
Huge Elemental, Neutral
Armor Class: 15
Hit Points: 288 (24d12 + 72)
Speed: 0 ft., swim 80 ft.

Str: 21(+5) Dex:16(+3) Con:17(+3) Int:13(+1) Wis:12(+1) Cha:10(+0)

Skills: Perception +6
Damage Resistances: fire; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Damage Immunities: poison
Condition Immunites: exhaustion, grappled, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained, unconscious
Senses: blindsight 30 ft., passive Perception 16
Languages: Understands Auqan, but doesn't speak
Challenge: 11; XP: 72

Traits
Invisible in Water: The water wyrm is invisible while fully immersed in water.
Water Bound: The water wyrm dies if it leaves the water to which it is bound or if that water is destroyed.

Actions
Multiattack: The water wyrm may both bite and constrict.
Constrict: Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 15 ft., one creature. Hit: 18 (3d8 + 5) bludgeoning damage. If the target is Medium or smaller, it is grappled (escape DC 13) . Until this grapple ends, the target is restrained and the water weird can't constrict another target. Grappled creatures automatically take damage.
Bite: Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 18 (3d8+5) piercing damage.
Swallow Whole: If the bite attack succeeds against a grappled creature, it is swallowed, and the grapple ends. While swallowed, the creature is blinded and restrained, it has total cover against attacks and other effects outside the water wyrm, and it takes 36 (8d8) acid damage at the start of each of the wyrm's turns. If the water wyrm takes 50 damage or more on a single turn from a creature inside it, the wyrm must succeed on a DC 25 Constitution saving throw at the end of that turn or regurgitate all swallowed creatures, which fall prone in a space within 10 feet of the wyrm. If the water wyrm dies, a swallowed creature is no longer restrained by it and can escape from the corpse using 20 feet of movement, exiting prone.
[/sblock]
 
Replacing Mission to Thay - Elementum Divinantor, Darkest Cave

Bramallag:
To collect the pure elemental energy of earth, we will open a portal to the depest caverns in the world. Once there, you must seek out the deepest point, then spread this large pre-made ritual summoning circle. Once the circle has be laid flat, you will then cast this ritual to summon the greatest of this world's earth elementals. After defeating it in combat, you will use this tool to extract it's core, and return the core to here. Do not break or lose the extraction tool, we have only been able to create three in the time we have, and we will just barely have time to fully cleanse and purify one of them before your final journey.
The party is provided with:
  • a magical doo-hickey with a claw-thingy on one end.
  • a large, rolled-up carpet, and a scroll

Arrival
The portal opens onto the end of a dark passage, only a few feet from the wall. Once you've wormed your way around the portal the passage extends past your sight, headed down. The air is still, and you can almost taste the weight of the earth, just like you can feel the darkness as a tangibile substance.

The range of any light sources is halved, as is the range of all darkvision. And while it does not extinguish light sources, it does count as magical darkness.

Chasm Crossing
The passage opens, the weight of the dark earth becoming slightly less. The passage ends at a chasm that extends out of your sight above, below, and to your left and right. A shard of wall connects both chasm walls, the far end some 30 feet lower. An uneven and precarious path continues the descent on the far side.

Maps
[sblock]
Overhead:DeepestCaverns_ChasmOverhead.jpg
Profile:DeepestCaverns_ChasmProfile.jpg

These maps use textures from Ground Set Tiles (#7 - The Descent) from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on the DMs Guild.
[/sblock]
The path is rough and uneven, with a noticeable slope. All characters movement speed is reduced by 5 feet, and the path is treated as difficult terrain. No earth elemental suffers movement or speed penalties from the path.

Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Earth Elemental, 3 Earth Elementals, 4 Earth Elemental Myrmidons, 6 Lesser Earth Elementals
3 Earth Elementals, 4 Earth Elemental Myrmidons, 6 Lesser Earth Elementals
1 Greater Void Elemental, 4 Void Elementals, 12 Lesser Void Elementals
1 Greater Void Elemental, 4 Void Elementals, 12 Lesser Void Elementals

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 76900
[/sblock]

Waterfall Descent
For the first time since you entered this realm of darkness, silence, and earth, you can feel a wind, taste water instead of dust, and hear a roar of falling water. Soon, the cramped passage enters a damp, crystal-filled shaft, a sheet of water filling the middle as it descends from the empty darkness above into the empty darkness below. In the faint light from the crystals, you can discern that the path winds its descent around the walls of the shaft before it vanishes in the mist filling the shaft.

The waterfall emerges from the top of the shaft 900 feet above the opening. Likewise, the floor of the shaft is also 1000 feet down. Climbing the walls is a DC 12 Strength (Athletics) check A new check is required every 100 feet, and the DC increases by one every time. The mist from the waterfall fills the entire shaft at this point, lightly obscuring the area.

The path is very rough terrain, it is not smooth or level, and is slick from the mist. Characters speed is reduced by 5 feet, and the path counts as difficult terrain. In addition, addition any characters who are knocked prone, or who become dazed, must make a DC 9 Dexterity saving throw to avoid falling off the path. The mineral elementals do not suffer any movement or speed penalties for being on the path.
The walls are not even or smooth. Non-flying characters who fall off the path, and are within 10 feet of the path should make a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw. If they succeed exactly, they are clinging to a ledge 100 feet below where they fell. Each point above 15 decreases the depth by 5 feet, each point below increases it by the same; normal falling damage applies.

Non-flying characters who are launched more than 10 feet away from the edge of the path must make a DC 20 Charisma saving throw to manuever themselves to within 10 feet of the wall. If they succeed, they will then make another saving throw (as described prior). Their base distance is 200 feet. Characters who do not make their first saving throw have fallen to their death, and their body is not recoverable.

Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Mineral Elemental with maximum hit points, 4 Mineral Elementals, 2 Lesser Mineral Elementals
1 Greater Mineral Elemental, 2 Mineral Elementals, 2 Lesser Mineral Elementals
1 Greater Mineral Elemental, 2 Mineral Elementals, 2 Lesser Mineral Elementals
1 Greater Mineral Elemental, 2 Mineral Elementals, 2 Lesser Mineral Elementals

1 Greater Steam Elemental, 4 Steam Elementals, 4 Lesser Steam Elementals
4 Steam Elementals, 2 Lesser Steam Elementals
4 Steam Elementals, 2 Lesser Steam Elementals
4 Steam Elementals, 2 Lesser Steam Elementals
2 Steam Elementals

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 88000
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
DeepestCaverns_Waterfall.jpg

This map uses textures from Ground Set Tiles (#7 - The Descent) from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on the DMs Guild.
[/sblock]

Rubble Slide
The passage stops preciptiously, opening abruptly into what can only described as a cavernous void. 20 feet below the opening, an enormous pile of rubble slopes down and away from the wall and out of your sight.

The rubble is mostly stable, but it is difficult terrain. Characters who are knocked prone must make a Dexterity saving throw with a DC equal to 10 or half the damage they suffered, whichever is greater. If they succeed, nothing further happens. If they fail, they slide an additional 30 feet and take 7 (2d6) bludgeoning damage.

Any attack that inflicts bludgeoning or thunder damage and hits the rubble will start a small slide. All characters within a 5 foot cone per 10 points of damage must make a DC 15 saving throw. On a failure, they slide a distance equals to 4 times size of the cone and take half the damage of the original attack as bludgeoning damage. A successful save reduces the damage by half again, and the distance by half as well (to 2 times the distance).

All earth elementals are immune to both of these effects.

Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Dust Elemental, 4 Dust Elementals, 8 Lesser Dust Elementals
12 Lesser Dust Elementals
1 Greater Earth Elemental with maximum hit points, 6 Earth Elementals
1 Greater Earth Elemental, 6 Earth Elementals
4 Earth Elementals

Total CR: 25; Total XP: 62700
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
DeepestCavern_RubbleSlide.jpg

This map uses textures from Ground Set Tiles (#7 - The Descent) from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on the DMs Guild.
[/sblock]

The Deepest Cavern
The passage you've been following has been level for quite some time, the few pebbles from the rubble slide long since left behind. Eventually, you took a short rest, then continued onwards.Now the passage opens into a immense cavern, but even as the caven opens up, the darkness presses down on you even more heavily, an almost tangible presence. From the darkness, you hear the booming and grating sound of Terran being spoken.

Encounter
[sblock]
1 Earth Elemental Ancient
1 Earth Elemental, 4 Lesser Earth Elementals
1 Greater Earth Elementals with maximum hit points, 2 Earth Elementals
1 Greater Earth Elementals with maximum hit points, 2 Earth Elementals
1 Greater Earth Elementals, 1 Earth Elemental
1 Greater Earth Elementals, 1 Earth Elemental
8 Lesser Earth Elementals
8 Lesser Earth Elementals
4 Lesser Earth Elementals

Total CR: 30; Total XP: 152000
[/sblock]

Map
[sblock]
Winding Caverns, by Arc Knight Games; Knotwork-100ppi
[/sblock]

The characters enter from the top of the map. All light and vision ranges within these caverns are reduced by half. The floor is even, level, and regular. The ceiling is 40 feet high in the main cavern, and 30 feet high in the tunnels. There are candelabras placed about the chamber. They do not provide light - instead they enhance the range of tremorsense. To the earth elementals, this is a brightly lit hall, and everything in it is visible.

For characters who speak Terran, the dialect is very hard to understand, and the speech is initially, unintelligible. A character who understands Terran, can make a DC 13 Insight or DC 16 Intelligence check to understand it. The initial speech is Pure Terran, which can only be spoken by actual earth elementals, and appears to be formal court proceedings.




Earth Elemental Ancient
[sblock]
Gargantuan Elemental, Neutral
Armor Class: 21 (natural armor)
Hit Points: 810 (30d20 + 210)
Speed: 40 ft., burrow 50 ft.

Str: 24(+7) Dex:8(-1) Con:24(+7) Int:7(-2) Wis:12(+1) Cha:7(-2)

Saving Throws: Con +15
Skills: Perception +9
Damage Vulnerabilities: thunder
Damage Immunities: poison; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Condition Immunites: exhaustion, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, unconscious
Senses: darkvision 90 ft., tremorsense 90 ft., passive Perception 19
Languages: Terran, Primordial
Challenge: 27; XP: 105000

Traits
Earth Glide: The elemental can burrow through nonmagical, unworked earth and stone. While doing so, the elemental doesn't disturb the material it moves through.
Seige Monster: The elemental deals double damage to objects and structures.
Empowered Attacks: An Earth Elemental Ancient's attacks are treated as magical for the purpose of bypassing resistance and immunity to nonmagical weapons.
Magic Resistance: An Earth Elemental Ancient has advantage on all saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Actions
Multiattack: The Earth Elemental Ancient makes four slam attacks.
Slam: Melee Weapon Attack: +15 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 25 (4d8 + 7) bludgeoning damage.
Quake (Recharge 5-6): The elemental chooses a 15 foot radius area within 50 feet of it. The ground shakes and rumbles. Any creature in the affected area must succeed on a DC 20 Dexterity saving throw. On a faulure the target takes 13 (2d10\2) bludgeoning damage and 13 (2d12) force damage, and is knocked prone. The ground within the area is considered rough terrain afterwards. If the saving throw is successful, the target takes half the bludgeoning and force damage, and isn't knocked prone.

Legendary Actions
An Earth Elemental Ancient may take 2 legendary actions per round. Each action may only be taken at the end of another's turn.
Boulder Throw (1 action): Ranged Weapon Attack: +15 to hit, range 50/200 feet, one target. Hit: 33 (4d12+7) bludgeoning damage, plus the target must make a DC 18 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.
Earthen Grasp (1 action): The elemental chooses a 15 foot radius area within 50 feet of it. The ground shakes and rumbles. Any creature in the affected area must succeed on a DC 20 Dexterity saving throw, or be restrained. A restrained character can break the grasp with a DC 22 Strength (Athlethics) or DC 22 Dexterity(Acrobatics) check as an action. Doing so changes the target's condition to grappled, which the target can remove with a DC 20 Strength (Athlethics) or DC 20 Dexterity(Acrobatics) check as an action. A restrained target automatically fails its save against the Quake action; a grappled target has disadvantage on the saving throw.
Earth's Embrace (2 actions): Each enemy within 60 feet must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, they suffer 26 ( 4d12) necrotic damage, and the ancient elemental heals one half of the target's damage. On a successful save, the target receives half damage, and the ancient is not healed.

Lair Actions
At the end of every round, the Ancient may randomly spawn various elementals. Roll 1d6. On a 1-3, spawn 4 lesser elementals. On a 4-5, spawn 2 normal elementals. On a 6, spawn one greater elemental.
[/sblock]
 
Replacing Mission to Thay - Elementum Divinantor, Hottest Fire

Bramallag:
To collect the pure elemental energy of fire, we will transport you to the rim of the hottest volcano. After arrival, you must descend to the very caldera of the volcano, then spread this large pre-made ritual summoning circle at its very center. Once the circle has be laid flat, you will then cast this ritual to summon the greatest of this world's fire elementals. After defeating it in combat, you will use this tool to extract it's core, and return the core to here. Do not break or lose the extraction tool, we have only been able to create three in the time we have, and we will just barely have time to fully cleanse and purify one of them before your final journey.
The party is provided with:
  • a magical doo-hickey with a claw-thingy on one end.
  • a large, rolled-up carpet, and a scroll
  • Boots of Lava Walking (2)
    [sblock]
    Wondrous Item, Very Rare
    These boots allow the user to walk on magma as if it were solid ground, and without breaking through the thinnest of lava crusts. They also protect the user from all environmental effects related to heat and fire, but not from direct contact with the magma by parts of the body not covered by the boots.
    [/sblock]
  • Cream of Fire-proofing
    [sblock]
    Potion, Oil, Very Rare
    One vial of this cream grants one large, two medium, or four small objects immunity to all fire damage for 24 hours. Examples of each size of object would be a small 5x7 carpet of flying, 2 cloaks, or 4 staves.[/sblock]

Arrival
You appear with a puff of air that pushes aside clouds of black dust and noxious fumes, heat blasting from the calera on one side, and a steep slope on the other. You can make out a descent to the bottom on the caldera fairly easily. The center of the caldera is a large lake of bubbling lava, broken paths and floating rafts of cooled and crusted lava circling around it. You can also easily make out fire and magma elementals cavorting throughout the caldera.

Extreme Heat: At all times, unprotected characters take 3 (1d6) damage per round.
Naked Lava: Coming into partial contact with naked lava inflicts 17 (5d6) fire damage. Full body contact, such as if some one were knocked prone onto the naked lava inflicts 25 (10d6) fire damage. The lava supports a body for one round, and then it submerges. Being submerged in lava inflicts 70 (20d6) fire damage. Falling onto the naked lava from a height of 20 feet or greater will also submerge a body, otherwise, it will end in full body contact.

Going Down (Crater Wall)
Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Earth Elemental, 3 Earth Elementals, 6 Earth Elemental Myrmidons
1 Greater Smoke Elemental with maximum hit points, 3 Smoke Elemental Myrmidons, 6 Smoke Elementals
1 Greater Smoke Elemental, 3 Smoke Elemental Myrmidons, 6 Smoke Elementals

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 79500
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
Volcanic Descent, from 2-Minute Tabletop

The characters enter at the top of the map. Each contour line crossed costs 5 feet of movement. The crater rim slopes up to the right.
[/sblock]

The Perilous Walk (Across the Lava Field)
You had been walking on the relatively cool and solid crust. Here, it begins to split apart, forming maze-like paths that you must follow to reach the center of the laval lake. Various-sized boulders are scattered about the paths, and you can see large gouts of flame (fire elementals?) dancing above the bubbling lava.

Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 4 Fire Elementals, 8 Fire Elemental Myrmidons, 12 Lesser Fire Elementals
1 Greater Magma Elemental with maximum hit points, 8 Magma Elemental Myrmidons
1 Greater Magma Elemental, 3 Magma Elementals, 6 Lesser Magma Elementals

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 84800
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
LavaMaze.jpg
This map uses Ground Set Tiles (#8 - Fireworld), from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on DMs Guild.

The characters enter at the bottom of the map. The exit is at the top. A DC 8 Wisdom (Perception) check confirms the fire elementals. A DC 17 Wisdom (Perception) or DC 13 Intelligence(Nature) check reveals the presence of the magma elementals.

The lit area under the Greater Magma Elemental with maximum hit points inflicts 7 (2d6) fire damage on anyone standing on it, at the start of their turn. Likewise, anyone standing on the "liquid area" under the Greater Magma Elemental risks falling through into the lava (DC 14 Dexterity saving throw). Neither the fire, nor the magma, elementals need worry about these restriction.

The fire elementals can walk on the lava unimpaired.
The magma elementals can only burrow through the lava, and do so at half speed. The magma elementals can surface and stand on the lava, but it takes half their movement to do so, and they must remain stationary while standing. Submerging into the lava is a free action for the magma elementals.
[/sblock]

The Lava Lake
By now, the narrow winding paths you have been following have broken apart into drifting rafts. Still, you are too far from the center to begin the ritual, so you must brave the lava floes to reach your destination.

Hottest Fire Environmental Hazards
The Lava Lake has the following additional environmental hazards:
[sblock]
Roll 3d6Hazard
3Large Lava Bombs
4 - 5Noxious Gases
6 - 8Lava Raft Collision
9 - 12Nothing
13 - 15Lava Raft Division
16 - 17Small Lava Bombs
18Lava Burst

Lava Raft Collision: The raft the characters are standing on collides with another. All characters must make a DC 10 Dexterity(Acrobatics) check or fall prone. Those within 5 feet of an end bordering lava fall prone onto the lava.
Lava Raft Division: The raft the characters are standing on splits in two, a 5 foot gap opening between the two pieces. The split is as equitable as possible, but no raft is even smaller that 5 feet square. Once a raft splits they will drift farther apart at a rate of 5 feet every 2 rounds.
Noxious Gases: For 2 (1d3) rounds, the raft the players are standing on are enveloped with noxious gases that behave identically to Stinking Cloud.
Small Lava Bombs: The raft the characters are standing on is bombarded with small lava bmbs. If the characters fail on a DC 14 Dexterity saving throw, they suffer 14 (4d6) fire damage. A successful save halves the damage.
Large Lava Bombs: The raft the characters are standing on is bombarded with large lava bmbs. If the characters fail on a DC 12 Dexterity saving throw, they suffer 28 (8d6) fire damage. A successful save halves the damage.
Lava Burst: A lava bubble bursts adjacent to the raft the characters are standing on, drenching the entire raft with lava. If the characters fail on a DC 16 Dexterity saving throw, the suffer 35 (10d6) fire damage. A successful save halves this damage.
[/sblock]
Encounter
[sblock]
1 Greater Fire Elemental with maximum hit points, 2 Fire Elementals, 2 Fire Elemental Myrmidons
1 Greater Fire Elemental with maximum hit points, 2 Fire Elementals, 2 Fire Elemental Myrmidons
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals, 2 Fire Elemental Myrmidons
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals, 2 Fire Elemental Myrmidons
4 Greater Magma Elementals
1 Magma Elementals, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals, 2 Lesser Magma Elementals
1 Magma Elementals, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals, 2 Lesser Magma Elementals
1 Magma Elementals, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals, 2 Lesser Magma Elementals

Total CR: 27; Total XP: 95600
[/sblock]
Map
[sblock]
LavaRaft.jpg
This map uses Ground Set Tiles (#8 - Fireworld), from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on DMs Guild.

The characters enter at the bottom of the map, and exit at the top. The magma elementals are much better hidden than before, especially the ones on the rafts - they are essentially lounging in the pool, using the rafts to prop their head up. The Greater Magma Elementals cannot be spotted with a Nature check, and the Perception DC is now 20. For the ones on the rafts, the Perception DCs are 25 for the large elementals and 27 for the medium ones. All the fire elementals are perfectly visible.

A lava raft can be pushed 15 feet per round for every 1 Huge/2 Large/4 Medium/12 Small creatures pushing (or equivalent). A telekinesis spell can also move a raft 15 feet a round (even though the raft weighs more than 1000 pounds). Other solutions are possible.
[/sblock]

The Center of the Volcano
The center of the lava is bare of even of those few lava rafts you have just wandered over. More impressive however, are the four huge fire elementals that are engaging in some form fire-based sculpture or dance, channeling and controlling multi-colored ribbons of intertwining flame while other lesser elementals watch. They must be upset at you interuppting their performance, because the flame sculpture is racing towards you.
Lava Lake
[sblock]
LavaLake.jpg

This map uses Ground Set Tiles (#8 - Fireworld), from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on DMs Guild.
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Pre-Ritual Combat
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1 Greater Fire Elementals with maximum hit points, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elementals with maximum hit points, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elementals with maximum hit points, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elementals with maximum hit points, 2 Lesser Fire Elementals

1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals
1 Greater Fire Elemental, 2 Fire Elementals

Total CR: 26; Total XP: 84200
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The characters enter from the left of the map. Before combat starts, all characters must make a DC 21 Dexterity saving throw versus a 10d6 fireball.

Exhausted after defending yourself, you take a short rest. Sooner than you would like however, it is time to begin the ritual. The carpet is much thicker and bigger than you expected. It is more than large enough to hold the ritual circle, as well as provide a wide strip to stand safely on. As you begin the ritual, the bubbling lava surrounding you stills, becoming almost mirror-smooth. As you continue the ritual, however, you become aware that the lava at the border of your still pond is rising to become a wall tens of feet tall.

Lava Lake Ready For Ritual
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LavaLakeWithRitual.jpg
This map uses Ground Set Tiles (#8 - Fireworld), from the Lord Zsezse Works, available on DMs Guild.
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Battling the Ancient
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1 Fire Elemental Ancient

Total CR: 27; Total XP: 105000
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Fire Elemental Ancient
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Gargantuan Elemental, Neutral
Armor Class: 17 (natural armor)
Hit Points: 875 (35d20 + 175)
Speed: 50 ft., fly 20 ft.

Str: 12(+1) Dex:22(+6) Con:20(+5) Int:10(+0) Wis:10(+0) Cha:15(+2)

Saving Throws: Dex +14
Skills: Perception +8
Damage Immunities: fire, poison; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Condition Immunites: exhaustion, grappled, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained, unconscious
Senses: darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 18
Languages: Ignan, Primordial
Challenge: 27; XP: 105000

Traits
Fire Form: The elemental can move through a space as narrow as 1 inch wide without squeezing. A creature that touches the elemental or hits it with a melee attack while within 5 feet of it takes 10 (1d20) fire damage. In addition, the elemental can enter a hostile creature's space and stop there. The first time it enters a creature's space on a turn, that creature takes 10 (1d20) fire damage and catches fire; until someone takes an action to douse the fire, the creature takes 10 (1d20) fire damage at the start of each of its turns.
Illumination: The elemental sheds bright light in a 60-foot radius and dim light in an additional 60 feet.
Water Susceptibility: For every 5 feet the elemental moves in water, or for every gallon of water splashed on it, it takes 4 (1d8) cold damage.
Empowered Attacks: A Fire Elemental Ancient's attacks are treated as magical for the purpose of bypassing resistance and immunity to nonmagical weapons.
Magic Resistance: A Fire Elemental Ancient has advantage on all saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Actions
Multiattack: The Fire Elemental Ancient makes four touch attacks.
Touch: Melee Weapon Attack: +14 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 23 (5d6+6) fire damage. If the target is a creature or a flammable object, it ignites. Until a creature takes an action to douse the fire, the target takes 10 (1d20) fire damage at the start of each of its turns.
Inferno (Recharge 5-6): The elemental chooses a 15 foot radius area within 50 feet. Creatures and held objects within the affected area must make a DC 19 Dexterity saving throw. On a failure, the target takes 19 (3d12) fire damage as fire rages around them, and ignites them. Until someone takes an action to douse the fire, the creature takes 10 (1d20) fire damage at the start of each of its turns. Any unattended flammable object ignites and takes full damage.
If the saving throw is successful, the creature takes half the fire damage, and does not ignite.

Legendary Actions
A Fire Elemental Ancient can take 2 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. One one legendary action option can be used at a time, and only at the end of another creature's turn. The Fire Elemental Ancient regains spent legendary action at the start of its turn.
Flame Burst (1 action): Ranged Spell Attack: +14 to hit, range 250 ft., one target. Hit: 35 (10d6) fire damage.
Flash Ignition (1 action): Each creature that has felt the effects of the ancient's Fire Form since its last turn suffers 21 (2d20) fire damage.
Consuming Fire (2 actions): Each enemy within 60 feet must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, they suffer 26 ( 4d12) necrotic damage, and the ancient elemental heals one half of their damage. On a successful save, the target recevies half damage, and the ancient is not healed.

Lair Actions
At the end of every round, the Ancient may randomly spawn various elementals. Roll 1d6. On a 1-3, spawn 4 lesser elementals. On a 4-5, spawn 2 normal elementals. On a 6, spawn one greater elemental.
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WiLLyRS

Villager
[h1]Death at the Council[/h1]
This adventure is intended to be run just after the First Council, while the characters are in Waterdeep reporting on the results of their first mission.
I love this! I've put up a CSI style board with all the npcs and connections and i can't wait to play It! Just a question: on the manual It seems that the Adventure hook Is at the end of the quests that you wrote (the party starts investigating After the Murder), so how did you have the character involved?
 
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Merisal WANTS someone (the characters) to discover her plot. Athil's very obvious behavior is the primary intended hook, but feel free to use anything. If you need a more direct hook, have one of the council (the Harper, or Lord Neverember) assign them the investigation. Athil is one of the Council's aides, and Yvenne, one of the trusted maids, so both will come into contact with the adventurers. Also, Perral/Merisal and her group are the new hot act in Waterdeep, so the characters could also run into Athil and co. While out on the town.
 

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