Sunday, November 4, 2012

Keep On Kickassistan: Area B

Ladies and gents, here is the next installment of the Keep on Kickassistan conversion of good ol' module B2. If you're a player in my regular Game of Taps game, you'll want to skip this entry until after the group has gone through the area. If you're not, you may still want to skip this one; by converting the orcs in B2 to boar folk, I came up with two competing ideas for what I wanted these boar folk to be. The one that I've written about here is easily the more disturbing of the two and so, I've put in a line break to keep my players' prying eyes away and to give you an easy way out. Don't worry, I won't judge you.

B. Boar Folk Lair, Gur-Galur Tribe

Upon entering this foul cavern, your sense of smell is immediately assaulted by the reek of refuse and offal, of decaying food and rotting flesh. The wall directly ahead of you in the gloom is adorned with severed heads in various stages of rot and vermin-eaten squalor. You notice the heads of many races here, among them men, dwarves, elves and even stranger things. (Roll notice checks for PCs to see the head of the living boar folk on watch in area g, see below.) You hear a sort of grunting, squealing sound off to the east, but all is quiet to the west.

About the Boar Folk

Every boar folk fights. Sure, not all of them are actually men; the women fight just as well as the men, and there's no line drawn between a sow's duties and a hog's duties. Far from being egalitarian, this is more of a practical matter since the brutal life of these foul humanoids precludes any niceties like gender roles. Half of the boar "men" described below are actually boar "women." 

All of the boar folk of this warren (except the chief) are clad in leather armor. Although this could suit a PC in a pinch, this armor is in awful shape and grants a -3 armor penalty instead of the normal -2. Every boar folk in the warren is also armed with at least one spear, but usually two. The boar folks carry treasure only if the entry for their area states so. 

Boar Man
Init +1; Atk +1 spear (1d6) or +1 tusk (1d3+1); AC 13; HD 1d8+1; MV 30'; Act 1d20; SP Immune to disease, 60' infravision; SV Fort +2, Ref +0; Will -1; AL C.

The Gur-Galur Tribe

This particularly degenerate tribe of boar folk worship the demonic prince of swine, known in the common tongue only as Snurgsnurgalur (the best a man's voice can come to approximating the guttural sounds of the beast folk) the Wallower in Filth and Devourer of His Own Young. The Gur-Galur take the vile tenets of Snurgsnurgalur's faith to heart and practice some of the darkest acts known to man as a matter of course. As such, inbreeding, cannibalism and worse are common practices of this tribe. The nearby Iron Tusks tribe despises the Gur-Galur, and makes war against them as often as humans of the nearby lands. 

Features of the Area

Walls: The walls here are relatively straight and carved out of the rock of the hills. Over the years, the boar folk have "imported" local dirt and mud along with stolen hay for a more "natural" feeling floor.
Light: Since the boar folk have infravision, they rarely make use of lighting. As such, the only areas with explicit lighting are the Trough (area 9) and the chief's room (area 12). 
Doors: The paucity of the area also bears through on the doors used throughout the warren. These are rough, wooden affairs without iron banding and on crude wooden hinges. Though terribly crude, they are strong and require a DC 15 Strength check to batter down. 

Area g
In this narrowing area, a single boar man guard watches the entrance to the cavern through a hole in the wall that's similar to a murder hole except that it accommodates his entire head. As soon as he sees the PCs enter, he will notify the other boar men guards at area 8; together, this group will move south in an attempt to flank any PCs entering the lair. This boar man has 5 hp and no treasure. 

7. Guard Room

This filthy room reeks of unwashed bodies and barely disposed-of waste. The floor is littered with rags, bones, rotting scraps of previous meals and four shabby pallets. 
Four boar man guards quarter here (5 hp/ea), each carrying 2 spears: one for throwing, one for melee. Each carries 1d8 ep. 

8. Guard Room

Use the same read-aloud text as area 7. Four boar man guards quarter here, as well (as well, 5 hp/ea). Once the guard in area g lets them know of the PCs' approach, they will move south from here through area 9 to flank the PCs. They make no secret of their advance, hoping to alert the guards at area 7 through the squeals and grunts that constitute their language. 

9. The Trough

A huge roasting pit dominates the southern wall of this large room, spanning nearly twenty feet and gaping, as it does, from the colossal mouth of a crudely-carved stone demonic-looking swine. This demon-swine is crafted in such a way that the flames occasionally lick upward into its empty eye sockets, making it look as if this vast devil-pig greedily awaits some sacrifice. The rest of the room is filled with crude benches and long tables; in the center of each table is a trough-like depression stained black from years of food and blood, some of which is still present. A large chair poorly carved from bone sits at the head of one of the tables.
The chair is worthless and will crumble if the PCs try to move it. 

10. The Wallow

The foul odors that have permeated this cavern pale in comparison with the abject reek of this one. This large chamber is floored with muck and offal mixed with straw, every so many feet punctuated by a nest-like patch of straw and rags. As you approach, a thicket of spears rise up to greet you as the boar folk who nest here whirl about to face you.
There are 12 boar folk here (hp 4/ea; 2d6 sp/ea) and 11 boarlings. The boarlings are protected by a low pen that provides them cover -- a pen that makes the young seem as much like livestock as this tribe's future. ; in fact, they are kept here as much as an "emergency food resource" as to be reared in proper boar folk fashion.

11. Storage - Locked (DC 12)

The supplies stored here are more or less heaped together and will take some time to sort out. At least one turn must be spent separating the barely-edible food stores here from the 3 shields, 17 spears and 2 battle axes stored here. In a small crate can also be found a disused light crossbow and 60 bolts for it. 

12. Snurk, Son of Wheesquin, Devourer of Wheesquin

The most well-appointed chamber in the warren thus far, this room is notable primarily for its lack of filth. Its walls are lined with purloined tapestries and crude furniture and a rickety cot, all of which have seen better days. Some opened chests lay about the room, though they look to be empty. 
This is the dwelling of the Gur-Galur chieftain, Snurk. Snurk became chieftain after slaying and devouring his own father, Wheesquin One-Tusk a year ago. In the year since, Snurk has attempted to make peace with the neighboring Iron Tusks tribe, trying to convert the devotees of the Metal Gods to the worship of their ancestral deity, Snurgsnurgalur. So far, Snurk has met with limited success but does have an ally in the Iron Tusks' sub-chief who secretly offers sacrifice and foul obeisance in the name of He Who Wallows. Snurk wears chain mail and wields a massive two-handed mace as his only weapon (see Backbreaker below). He also carries 31 gp and wears a fine silver ring set with a very large gem (700 gp value). 

Along with Snurk in his chamber are the two females he has claimed as mates. Both have 4 hp and 2d6 gp apiece. 

Should the battle begin to go against Snurk, he will try to flee behind the tapestries against the western wall and make his way to the secret door that connects his chamber with the secret rendezvous chamber where he will try to convince the Iron Tusks to come to his aid. (3 in 8 chance of that working.) If the PCs prevent his retreat (or his mates cannot cover him), Snurk may be open to parlaying (unless he is firmly under Backbreaker's sway, see below), and will attempt to turn the PCs against the Iron Tusks. He will offer the PCs any of his treasure and one of (or both of) his mates at area t but will refuse to give them Backbreaker. If the players persist in demanding his maul, Snurk loses his temper and attacks. 

Snurk, Son of Wheesquin, Devourer of Wheesquin
Init 1d16+3; Atk +5 mace (1d10+3) or +4 tusk (1d3+3); AC 16; HD 4d8+4 (23 hp); MV 30'; Act 1d20; SP Immune to disease, 60' infravision; SV Fort +3, Ref +1, Will +0; AL C.

Area t
Snurk uses this alcove to hide his wealth from his subjects. Here can be found:
  • 1 suit of man-sized chain mail
  • 1 suit of dwarf-sized chain mail
  • 4 long swords
  • a locked (DC 13) iron chest (break DC 20) containing:
    • 205 cp
    • 286 sp
    • 81 gp
    • 13 pp
  • A potion of healing (1d6+1 hp healed) and a scroll containing the spell Fireball, hidden behind a boulder in a small indentation. 

13. The Forgotten Room

This stone chamber holds nothing beside a chest off to the east, a bucket filled with stagnant water and small table with two attendant chairs. The north wall features a charcoal scrawl depicting crudely-drawn boar folk in supplication and various forms of degradation before a huge demonic-looking swine figure. The south wall, however, features a far better-wrought illustration of two tusks, bound with iron bands, painted here in white and black. This sign accompanies a series of pictograms resembling heads in profile alongside tally marks; someone seems to be keeping a headcount. Two shields adorn this southern wall as well. 
This is where Snurk meets the head of the Iron Tusks (infequently) or (more frequently) his sub-chief. The chest is not locked and contains a shortbow, 20 arrows, 2 short swords and 2 daggers. The two shields hung on the south wall function normally although they are quite beaten up. Hidden beneath the bucket are two small pouches, each holding 1 50 gp gem, 10 gp and 20 sp. Beneath these pouches, two not-so-giant centipedes lie in wait.
Not-so-giant Centipede
Init +1; Atk +1 bite (1 damage plus poison); AC 10; HD 1d4 (2 hp/ea); MV 20'; Act 1d20; SP Poison (Fortitude save DC 12 or paralyzed for 1d7 rounds), 20' blindsight; SV Fort +1, Ref +1, Will -3; AL N.

Backbreaker

This exceptionally large, mace-like weapon has a metal-cored wooden handle supporting heavy crown of stone spikes that erupt to the left and right of it. The stone itself is dark and glassy like granite, with veins of deep red and purple and flecks of sparkling green. Set at the end of the handle's shaft is small counter balance of the same material, wrought in the shape of a ring, five inches in diameter. 
Backbreaker is an exceptionally heavy and large two-handed mace that is perhaps better described by the word "maul." It does 1d10 damage on a hit due to its size and functions in all regards as a magic weapon (no enhancement bonus). Deep within the malevolent stone from which its head is crafted, a brutal, chaotic psyche lurks (Int 6; Empathy; AL C) that urges its wielder on to greater and greater acts of chaos; it seems to especially delight in slaying Lawful creatures, against which it functions as a +1 weapon. Furthermore, Backbreaker may shine a sickly light of swirling red, purple and green that illuminates up to a 20' area. So long as the wielder brandishes no weapon other than Backbreaker, he is able to speak the Chaotic alignment tongue; should he use a weapon other than Backbreaker, the wielder loses this benefit and cannot regain it until he has used Backbreaker exclusively for 24 hours.