Features Archive | 9/14/2012
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Appendix d12: Underdark Grottos
By Jason Sholtis

With the Rise of the Underdark campaign underway, this year has seen its share of drow incursions against the surface world—playing out right now in both the current D&D Encounters season and D&D Lair Assault. Add to that, the upcoming release of Menzoberranzan: City of Intrigue, and it’s highly possible that your campaign will soon be venturing into the Underdark.

To help DMs add further detail to their adventures underground, Jason Sholtis (of The Dungeon Dozen) has provided the following tables—in the spirit of the 1st Edition DMG’s appendices, charts, and random encounters!

What’s in that Out-of-the-Way Underdark Grotto?

Adventuring in the Underdark means plenty of exploration—and just as there are "empty" storerooms within a given dungeon, not all subterranean caverns and tunnels continue the plot. But, which can lead to all the more entertainment!


  1. Stagnant pool filled with bioluminescent prawns (edible).

  2. Anaerobic bacteria colony: huge, pulsating and stinky but otherwise harmless.

  3. The stupidest ogre’s secret stash depot: heaps of valueless trinkets and interesting skulls.

  4. Giant spider egg-sack, immature.

  5. Lots and lots of giant snake skins, molted.

  6. Abandoned svirfneblin secret observation point w/secret door to escape tunnel.

  7. Bubbling tar pit w/struggling troll who has already died and regenerated several times.

  8. Forlorn spirit of ancient hero chanting epic poem, must begin again if interrupted.

  9. Wax hive, once occupied by demonic bees: sealed cell contains half-congealed honey, a lethal poison.

  10. Mummified bodies of ancient royals and other junk abandoned by tomb robbers.

  11. Troglodyte gourmet’s curing station: extremely suspect salamis hang from ceiling.

  12. One zillion cockroaches.

About the Author

Jason Sholtis serves humanity by day as a humble social services worker but keeps evenings free for self-indulgences such as writing, drawing and playing in rock bands. D&D occupies a special place in his heart. His semi-daily blog The Dungeon Dozen focuses exclusively on random tables for the twelve-sided die.

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