Excerpts Archive | 12/14/2009
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Excerpts: Underdark: The Torturer's Ruin

In today's Underdark preview, we present a campaign arc for this subterranean realms -- in which we'll meet the very King That Crawls.

Into the Depths

The gods of the surface world live far away in the astral realm, kept from interfering in mortal affairs by their agreement with the primal spirits. But at the bottom of the Underdark, the evil god Torog tortures his victims in the flesh. Elsewhere in the Deeps, the mysterious drow, followers of the insane goddess Lolth, have carved kingdoms of night. And below both Torog and the drow are worse creatures, monsters that slip through cracks in the reality of the flawed creation of the Underdark to threaten the entire world.

Chapter 1 of Underdark discusses the mythic events that created the Underdark and the physical and supernatural realities that affect every adventurer who seeks to explore the realm under the world.

  • The View from the Surface: A summary of what surface dwellers know about the Underdark. It’s not much.
  • Origin of the Underdark: How the Underdark came to be, inextricably linked with Torog and his descent into the realm that would become his kingdom. The full story of the King that Crawls is not well known in a world where most fear to speak his name.
  • Lords of the Realm: Introducing the two other powers of the Underdark, the drow of the great Underdark city-states and the aberrants that crawled into the world through frayed holes in reality.
  • Geography of the Underdark: A short introduction to the two main regions of the Underdark—the Shallows and the Deeps—as well as the Feywild and Shadowfell echoes of the Underdark.
  • Underdark Phenomena: Descriptions of some of the most basic physical, magical, and spiritual aspects of the Underdark relevant to all adventures in the Underdark rather to than a specific geographic region.
  • Underdark Adventures: Tips for the DM who wants to build adventures set in the Underdark.
  • Campaign Arcs: Three detailed story backgrounds for campaigns that span the heroic, paragon, and epic tiers of play.

Campaign Arc: The Torturer's Ruin

This campaign begins on the surface and ends in the deepest Underdark, with the characters coming face to face with Torog. The deeper the adventurers delve, the greater Torog’s influence and divine power. They venture into the terrifying torture dens and battle the warped creatures that serve the god of prisons and torture.

150dpi (172 Kbs PDF)

Excerpt Schedule

Monday Friday

December 14

Ch. 1 Torturer's Ruin

December 18

Ch.2 The Shallows

December 21

Encounter: Dark Fungi

January 4

Ch. 3 The Deeps

January 8

Ch.4 Feydark

January 11

Ch.5 Shadowdark

January 15

Ch.6 New Creatures