Where the Alchemist's Lair Comes From

I've been expanding the Holmes sample dungeon. The 3rd level comes from an old map I drew years ago; it was supposed to be originally the 4th level of the Mentzer sample dungeon.  I was going to make that the 2nd level originally but I decided that putting a dragon's lair on the second level of a dungeon wasn't playing fair. So, I started researching how other people had expanded the Holmes Basic dungeon. I found this. The author, Bliss_Infinite filled out the dungeon with some single page dungeons. I decided that was a good idea so I found some too and made the second level of the dungeon some themed sublevels. One was shrine to Blibdoolpoolp created by myself years ago, the other was a goblin lair, and finally a ghost library.

The players have now at least partially explored all the sublevels. The shrine to Blibdoolpoolp I had to populate with cultists and fishmen. The goblin lair I had to change drastically and I was honestly disappointed with it when I ran it. There w…

The Last 2 sessions of Portown

Lady Lemunda’sBriefing on The Church and the Library.
Adventurers broke into the abandoned church and raided it. Fortunately we have started using the cemetery for our internment needs. All the more fortunate since the church had been overrun by ghouls. The ghouls were slain and we believe the crypts were looted by ghoul and adventurer alike. Such is the cost of allowing adventurers in our midst. Perhaps we should take steps to seal the entrances to the ruins.
Then it is believed that the adventurers discovered an underground library filled with spooky ghosts. I would advise the lady not to venture down there on account of the spookiness and the fact that the library was looted and there is now a golem running amuck.
The adventurers have fled town leaving the golem somewhere below ground.

Lady Lemunda’s Briefing on the Fate of the Golem.
Adventurers are offering up broken golem fragments for sale about town. The adventurers returned with some other strange looking people and went ba…

The Bugbears of Portown: Rumor and Ecology

The boys were cornered and grossed out. When they encountered the tall pumpkin-headed humanoid n the cave they had sought to avoid it. It behaved strangely gurgling and writhing. Then it began to retch.
The creatures jaw must have unhinged and the top of its head folded back. Mucus sputtered out from its esophagus into the air. A hand reached out from its mouth, covered in what was probably bile, clawing at the air.
After an interminable moment a goblin pulled itself out of the large creatures mouth and ran towards us, slipping on its own mucus (or was it bile) trail.
The boys beat it to death and then slew the larger thing while it was in the process of spawning another goblin. They defeated the creatures but we could not unsee what we so desperately wanted to unsee. So, in a way, the bugbear won. -Fan Fiction of the Thaumaturgist.

Fish Cult Today: The easiest session report to write

Brutal Pete, Cursed Dwarf Hated by the Gods
Pitwin, Halfling child Beloved of the Sentimental
Otter Wan Kenobi, Otter Mystic NPC
Frigga, Witch and Aspiring Cult Leader

This time one of my players provided an beautiful synopsis of The last session.

From Chris P:

"We dicked around for a bit at the start at the Green Dragon inquiring about Lemunda before descending into the sea caves through the smuggler's entrance. We learned from some Chaos!goblins and some kobold "artists" that she was being held prisoner by the Goblin King. After slaying a giant (5 HD+ spider) with fire and projectile and moving through its lair, we found a couple of sleeping goblins guarding a door. We made friends with the guards and learned that Lemunda had BECOME the new Goblin King. After weaseling our way past various guards and sentries, we met up with her in the throne room, to which she was very glad to see us. She had tried to organize the goblins into a force against the fish cult, …

Ethbran and the sages of Portown

No god is a philosopher or seeker after wisdom, for he is wise already; nor does any man who is wise seek after wisdom. Neither do the ignorant seek after wisdom. -The Symposium
I decided that I wanted to put sages in my Portown campaign but Holmes does not include rules for sages and I didn’t really like the way that Blackmoor handled sages. Blackmoor presents sages as scholars in a guild. They seem to be designed as a money sink on the PCs, which makes sense. Massive amounts of treasure is needed to gain levels in OD&D and DMs need to give the players something to spend it on or the players find perverse stuff to spend the money on (not necessarily sexually perverse, but the players will use the money to upend social order). The sage is kind of a dm screwjob. It is an NPC that the players are eventually going to need that is designed to cost them a lot of money and annoy them. Naturally the players are going to want to kill these sages, so Blackmoor states that sages can give powe…