Author Topic: ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.  (Read 350 times)

Offline Nytemare3701

  • DnD Handbook Writer
  • ****
  • Posts: 1313
  • 50% Cripple, 50% Awesome. Flip a coin.
    • View Profile
ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.
« on: October 22, 2018, 05:54:22 AM »
This is a little brainstorm on monsters and hazards that fit the swamp biome and add significantly to that "everywhere I go I run into something new and terrifying, but I can't stop because I'll be eaten by what's behind me" feel that a swamp or haunted wood usually evokes in media. This may get turned into a mini-guide as part of the monster tactics handbook so I'm gonna write it handbook format, despite being relatively sparse when it comes to actual options involved. While this is in it's early stages it'll probably just going to look like I got stuck reading Heroes of Horror cover to cover a dozen times over a weekend, but that's because there's some good basics in there.

Step 1: The Terrain:
All that horror goodness has to happen somewhere, and that somewhere needs to be JUST annoying enough to ruin people's day, but not annoying enough to detract from the main event.
Luckily, the oft-overlooked basic traits a marsh do a lot of the work for us, limiting vision range and making everything hard to move in.
(click to show/hide)
Step 2: The Hazards:
Swamps are famous for being inimical to any life not native to them (Charnel Bogs even moreso). To this end, we introduce the wonderful world of inhaled diseases. Remember that saves vs Disease can be rolled secretly, which means you basically have free reign to hand diseases out when a character is completely immersed in an inhaled disease environment for extended periods of time.
(click to show/hide)
Remember, Diseases can exist in the same space at the same time, and with the effects of the Charnel Bog chipping away at the resources of the party, Diseases are sure to make them even more vulnerable to what comes next:
Step 3: The Vegetation:
With any good swamp, we are going to need the grasping vines and raking trees that make up all of a swamp's vegetation. To this end, I present to you one of my favorite "barely a creature" creatures: The Boneleaf.
(click to show/hide)

Step 4: The Denizens:
While there is no shortage of things that can be found in a swamp, there are a few that stand out as horror trope all stars.
(click to show/hide)



Next Up: The Predators. Swamp Trolls WORK, but they aren't cool enough for my taste. What kind of murk dwelling horrors do you think deserve the final place in this festival of filth?
« Last Edit: October 22, 2018, 06:05:59 PM by Nytemare3701 »
Extended Sig Index
http://www.minmaxboards.com/index.php?topic=4358.0

I'm a Game Design consultant. PM me if you want advice on your game!
http://www.minmaxboards.com/index.php?topic=9765.0

Offline awaken_D_M_golem

  • Epic Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 7356
  • (un-) Amazingly Unproductive
    • View Profile
Re: ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2018, 05:11:49 PM »
 :blush
step #1 reminds me of the 4e Howling Warrens, slowly escalating to doom.
avatar#3 , gravitational lensing edition ... I'm way on the other side of the universe but look like pretty rings

Offline Nanashi

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Posts: 15
  • I'm new!
    • View Profile
Re: ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2018, 12:43:28 AM »
If you want some supernatural hazards, crib from the old Star Wars d6 module Domain of Evil. Illusions and mind affecting effects make the place loads more deadly.

Quote
Bog Imps can use their burrow speed (60) in place of swim speed in any liquid more viscous than clear water.

Wait a minute!

Quote from: Five seconds on a search engine
The viscosity (i.e., internal resistance to flow) of seawater, for example, is higher than that  of fresh water because of its higher salinity.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2018, 12:46:30 AM by Nanashi »

Offline SolEiji

  • Epic Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 3029
  • I am 120% Eiji.
    • View Profile
    • D&D Wiki.org, not .com
Re: ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2018, 11:56:11 AM »
If you want some supernatural hazards, crib from the old Star Wars d6 module Domain of Evil. Illusions and mind affecting effects make the place loads more deadly.

Quote
Bog Imps can use their burrow speed (60) in place of swim speed in any liquid more viscous than clear water.

Wait a minute!

Quote from: Five seconds on a search engine
The viscosity (i.e., internal resistance to flow) of seawater, for example, is higher than that  of fresh water because of its higher salinity.

Blood is thicker than water too.

Burrow through their blooooooood.
Mudada.

Offline awaken_D_M_golem

  • Epic Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 7356
  • (un-) Amazingly Unproductive
    • View Profile
Re: ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2018, 03:51:43 PM »
Nanashi ... huh , 1991.

It's always iffy to bring real world physics into d&d
(but most people can't resist on some  level)
so I googled to see if fresh v salt water did anything.


Fresh Water Versus Salt Water
The DUNGEONS & DRAGONS game does not distinguish between creatures that live in freshwater, creatures that live in saltwater, or creatures that can survive in either. Most monsters are completely insensitive to the difference - you can find aboleths in the bottom of Underdark rivers and seas or in the deep ocean trenches. The encounter tables (Stormwrack Appendix) reflect an implicit division of animals and monsters into creatures found in fresh water (nixies) and creatures found in salt water (aquatic elves or sahuagin), but otherwise an aquatic creature is an aquatic creature.
At the DM's discretion, creatures that belong in the other kind of water must make a Constitution check once per hour (DC 10, + 1 per previous check) or take 1d6 points of nonlethal damage. Creatures who take damage from a saltwater or freshwater environment become fatigued and remain so as long as they remain in an environment they aren't suited for.


Besides this doesn't bother the Bog Imp at all.
Where ever it goes it's f-ing up the water, in it's favor.
Quote from: Stagnate
    "Any nonmagical liquids that comes within 60ft of a bog imp immediately stagnate"

River Styx would be immune.
avatar#3 , gravitational lensing edition ... I'm way on the other side of the universe but look like pretty rings

Offline Nytemare3701

  • DnD Handbook Writer
  • ****
  • Posts: 1313
  • 50% Cripple, 50% Awesome. Flip a coin.
    • View Profile
Re: ZOINKS! How to nail that "Swamp of Death" experience.
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2018, 11:26:19 PM »
Further discussion of the topic has been moved to the Monster Tactics Handbook discussion thread :-D
Extended Sig Index
http://www.minmaxboards.com/index.php?topic=4358.0

I'm a Game Design consultant. PM me if you want advice on your game!
http://www.minmaxboards.com/index.php?topic=9765.0