Village of Camiram
of Camiram (kam-EE-ram) can serve as a safe haven for a group of low-level
D&D adventurers as they set out into the world for the first
time, seeking fame and fortune. It also can serve as a location for adventurers
to encounter in their travels, but it's primarily intended as a base of
operations and an example of how to build similar villages. You can place
it in the World of Greyhawk, another D&D campaign setting,
or a world of your own creation.
This episode of
The Village of Camiram introduces the player characters to Camiram
-- and a whole lot of trouble. In
Episode One we presented a rundown of the areas geography
and history. Episode
Two offered a closer look around the village, while Episode
Three introduced us to the locals. The fourth
installment brought us face to face with some of Camirams
The village of Camiram
is located along the frontier of wild and untamed lands where the rule
of law is no more than a distant idea. The village has faced a number
of threats in the form of barbarian raiders and local orc tribes, but
now it faces a greater threat -- a danger from within that may turn
the borderland tensions into a war that no one will win.
The adventure begins
with the party arriving in Camiram. The group could be traveling to
the village for any number of reasons. They could be from the outlying
farms, visiting for the festival or to buy supplies to begin a life
of adventuring and exploring the Wild Lands. They might be from a neighboring
area, on an exploratory trip and stopping over in the village to restock
and rest. They might be curious members of the barbarian band that has
come to Camiram to negotiate with the mayor and the village elders.
Or they might have dwelled all their lives in the village -- are they
ready for something new, or are they completely unaware of what is about
to happen next?
Festival of Peace
It's the harvest
in Camiram, a festive time when farmers sell their excess crops at market
and the people of the village celebrate the gods bounty in a weeklong
festival. This year's festival is particularly special for a number
of reasons. Most importantly, the village has invited a delegation from
the Tribe of the Crescent Moon to come to Camiram to discuss a possible
alliance between the barbarian tribe and the people of the village.
The good harvest has folks wondering if the barbarians will attempt
to raid, but the mayor believes the barbarians can benefit from trade
with the village and help fend off the depredations of the orcs and
other dangers out in the Wild Lands.
the chief of the Crescent Moon, has agreed to attend the festival along
with some of his people, including the sorceress Vosta the Veiled, his
advisor. All preparations have been made to welcome them into Camiram,
but resentment still simmers beneath the surface. Some villagers believe
the barbarians killed Mika Pharos, the beloved local cleric and healer,
during a raid on an outlying farm. Pharos would have presided over the
festival this year as he had many times before. Now the new village
priestess, Jinna Yost, will do so. In truth, Seligg
the doppelganger and his orc allies arranged Pharos's death to increase
tensions between the barbarians and the villagers. The barbarians deny
that they killed Pharos, and such accusations only anger them.
Give the characters
time to wander around the village, particularly the market square, for
a little while, getting acquainted with the area and some of the people.
A chance encounter with one or more of the NPCs described in Episode
allows for some roleplaying and the opportunity to introduce the players
to the characters involved in the story. Having a player character accidentally
run into one of the Crescent Moon barbarians (perhaps even Sollek himself)
can let the PCs defuse an otherwise tense situation when the barbarian
gets angry. The mysterious Vosta might take the chance to speak some
cryptic words of warning to the characters, telling them they have a
special destiny (although she isn't sure exactly what).
While the characters
are in the marketplace, someone steals a small weapon (probably a dagger)
from one of them. Don't roll for this; just assume that it takes place
and have the player make a Spot check (DC 8) to notice that the weapon
is gone. The victim can report the theft to Ekam Relles, who says he
will look into it.
at the Well
Late that night,
as the first evening of the festival winds down, have the characters
make a Spot check (DC 10). Characters who succeed notice a shadowy figure
over by the village well (location 20 on the
No one else
is around. The slim figure is pouring something into the well, then
quickly sneaks off into the darkness. Another Spot check (DC 15) reveals
it is Vosta the Veiled! Any check of the well water shows that it's
been poisoned with deadly dark reaver powder (see the Dungeon
Master's Guide for details).
If the characters
chase Vosta, she leads them through the marketplace toward the ruined
villa (location 6 on the map), ducking inside. If the characters seem
likely to catch her too quickly, Vosta instead disappears into a small
knot of people in the marketplace, only to mysteriously reappear near
the villa, but close enough for the characters to see her go inside.
In fact, it is not Vosta they are pursuing but Seligg the doppelganger,
which has assumed her form.
When the characters
reach the ruined villa, they find the real Vosta there, lying dead on
the floor. Close at hand is the weapon stolen from the PC earlier in
the day, stained with Vosta's blood. As the party begins to look around
for any sign of the fleeing figure, Ekam Relles and several village
guards appear at the entrance to the villa and see the characters standing
over the body
has been a freelance writer in the RPG industry for five years and a
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