D&D 5E [OotA] Improving Sloobludop (Spoilers)

Goober4473

Explorer
Next session, my players should reach Sloobludop, and while I like a lot of the basic setup of the place, I feel like I can do better in terms of what the players are actually doing. The given "quest" here is to fake being sacrifices for the Deep Father in order to infiltrate the enemy, but I'm honestly not sure how that helps anyone. It seems to mostly serve as a way to advance to the ritual event, and smart players will probably begin taking out enemies long before that, rather than get dragged into the middle of a huge pile of enemies at the sacrifice.

My thought so far is to have the place be pretty entirely under the control of the cult of Leemooggoogoon after Bloppblippodd received her vision and united her people under a new banner. Her father, and those still loyal to Blibdoolpoolp, have officially "converted", but plot against the new regime.

Enter the players, who may have encountered a strike force on their way in, who tried to nab them for sacrifice, but once they reach the town, no one will touch them in the open, for fear of losing the favor of the people, but neither will they let the potential sacrifices go very far should they leave. After being contracted by Ploopploopeen or Glooglugogg, the players need to navigate the tense social conditions of Sloobludop while finding a way to return power to those loyal to the Sea Mother, whether by killing Bloppblippodd or by swaying public opinion. At that point, the desperate cultist perform their ritual, and Leemooggoogoon reveals his true form.

Has anyone done anything like this before? What were the best and worst parts of Sloobludop for you? Any ideas for specific challenges the players could face in order to affect public opinion?
 

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Daern

Explorer
You have the right idea. It should be pretty quick. Let them figure out what is going on, then get that ritual started. The whole thing is basically a cut-scene.
 

As written, yeah, Sloobludop is a bit odd – it’s all intended to get to the altar and sacrifice scene, and the rising of Leemoogoogon. I wish I had done more to re-write it before I ran it, but I ran out of time.

One of the great things about Out of the Abyss is that there's a lot of room for DM creativity.

I think your idea is sound and gives the PCs more agency and input into how they tackle the section. The only thing that I might mention is PC motivation – I don’t know your group, but one key part of the section is giving them a reason to aid the Kuo-Toa, rather than just stealing a boat and trying to traverse the Darklake on their own.

If you’re looking for ideas for social challenges with the Kuo-Toa, there are a lot of things you can use in the text. Things like how Kuo-Toa like to be higher up to demonstrate greater importance when speaking. The seeking of mysteries and strange wisdom within the Darklake. They are a scavenger people, and what they value might not be the same as the surface races.

Oh, and one thing I'd recommend is practicing saying all the names; they can be a little weird to keep straight and pronounce right.
 

wedgeski

Adventurer
In agreement with the previous poster I did a couple of things to engage the party at Sloobludop.

First, Shushar asked them to speak on his behalf, as I had written his backstory as being an exile (can't remember if that's in the text), and in returning home, he was effectively risking death and expected to be put on trial. Second, I've made the Society of Brilliance an integral part of the campaign, and Grazilaxx had already encountered the party and told them that the Society had become separated, and he should look out for his companions; from there it was a no-brainer to write in one of the Society as the upcoming sacrifice (I chose Skriss).

We've only just finished that section and although I felt the uncomfortable tug of the rail-road as I led events towards Leemogoogon's emergence, it worked very well. All of the PC's and NPC's endured a revelatory vision when the demon appeared, and Ront was seduced into allowing his simmering hatred for the paladin, who had taken charge and effectively made the orc his sidekick, to finally spill over. He turned on him in the middle of the escape and almost killed him with one hit! The players absolutely loved it, although the paladin, already "favoured" of Zuggtmoy after he tried to heal a maddened purple worm of its fungal afflictions (!), is really being put through the wringer. The player in question assures me he's fine with it. :)
 

Koren

Explorer
...although the paladin, already "favoured" of Zuggtmoy after he tried to heal a maddened purple worm of its fungal afflictions (!), is really being put through the wringer. The player in question assures me he's fine with it. :)

A true paladin wouldn't have it any other way. ;)
 

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