Categories
OSR

Lair of the Putrid Warrior

A dungeon for B/X made on Gridmapper.

Feature image by Neil Theasby, on geography.org.uk, from Wikimedia Commons.

I’ve discovered Gridmapper. While I do like Dungeon Scrawl a lot, sometimes it runs really slow on my old notebook, even more so when I’m trying to draw large dungeon maps; Gridmapper runs smoother, compensating for its comparatively limited selection of features, though I’d say it has just enough tools to make great maps. Also, as I was used to the mouse-based UI of Dungeon Scrawl, Gridmapper’s keyboard-based UI was a surprise, but the learning curve wasn’t as steep as I first thought. And it’s fun to use! So, after this informal comparison based on personal use, and without further ado, I present you a little dungeon I’ve made in Gridmapper – the Lair of the Putrid Warrior.

Once a mighty warrior who, with his warband, conquered the countryside, he was slain, but rose on a moonless night as the undead Putrid Warrior, striking fear in the hearts of common folk, until he was sealed in his own lair and tomb. Decades later, some monsters moved in, and two expeditions travelled to the dungeon in search of its riches: a brigand of dwarves and gnomes, and a group of human delvers and their goblin and orc hirelings. The first group is still on the move, looking for an important relic, while the other is for now stationed in some of the dungeon’s rooms, trying to regroup and decide their next course of action.

A larger, high-quality version of this map is available at our Downloads page.

Writing the notes about what are the most important elements of each room, and making them short enough to fit the designated space, was an interesting exercise in minimalism. However, one thing went missing, due to space: the random encounters. Sure, you can use the general table, but if you want something a little more specific, I suggest the following table.

d12Encounter
15d10 normal rats (spies for the wererat)
21d10 stirges (looking for their pack)
31d8 fire beetles (scared of almost anyone in the dungeon)
42d4 orcs (hirelings of the delvers, on patrol)
52d4 goblins (hirelings of the delvers, on patrol or looking for their wolves)
61d6 dwarves (looking for treasure, friends of the gnomes)
71d6 gnomes (looking for treasure, friends of the dwarves)
83d6 giant rats (spies for the wererat)
91d4 giant shrews (friendlier* to dwarves and gnomes)
101d6 wolves (raised by goblins as pets; perhaps they’re lost?)
11Trail of an encounter (roll 1d10 to determine which one)
12Two parties (roll 1d10 twice, roll their reactions to each other)
* +1 to reaction rolls.

Expanding the Lair

If the approach above is too minimal for your tastes, then I suggest the expanded descriptions of the dungeon’s rooms, as below.

1. Entrance

  • Connects to rooms 2, 3 and 4; all doors are unlocked.
  • Faint light from outside comes from the entrance.
  • Iron bars allow one to see what lies on room 4, as far as their light sources go.
  • A dwarf and a gnome talk about their colleagues who went further in; they’ll wait 1d4 hours to rendezvouz with them here but after that, if they don’t come back, they’ll leave the dungeon to come back 1d4 weeks later with reinforcements.

2. Trader’s Room

  • Connects to room 1 (unlocked door); a one-way door allows one to come from, but not to, room 12 (there’s a small amount of debris before the one-way door).
  • Four torches in sconces illuminate this room.
  • A friendly trader (F1, N) takes refuge here, and is willing to sell their wares to any amiable party; they carry clubs, daggers, fur hides (equivalent to leather armor), hand axes, javelins, rope, sacks, slings, and torches (at most 1d6 of each).
  • The trader wants to: reunite with their friends (see below) before leaving the dungeon; make good deals; find the key that locks this room, in order to stop monsters from entering (and the key they carry isn’t the one, see below).
  • The trader has one of the three magic keys that open the door on room 20, but they think it’s just an odd-looking key.
  • The trader has three associates, bodyguards who travelled with them; the trader is interested in their whereabouts; they can be found on rooms 4 (alive, but blind), 5 (dead) and 8 (alive, but shocked).

3. Troll Passageway

  • Connects to rooms 1 (unlocked door) and 4 (locked door).
  • Only the faintest light from the entrance enters here, shimmering in the water.
  • Corridor surrounded on both sides by water, which is full of piranhas (stats as giant piranhas, but smaller, with 1 HD and appearing as packs of 3d12 members); they don’t bother with the troll (see below), as they’re disgusted by their blood and meat.
  • A troll, Svargos the Moss-Coated, guards the passageway; when doused on fire or acid, he’ll jump in the water; he thinks he’s the smartest troll ever for thinking of this plan.
  • Svargos wants to: eat (he’s almost always hungry); sleep (in the rare moments he’s well fed); guard the passageway (though he doesn’t remember why anymore, just that it’s an important thing to do); think new, exciting thoughts (his “water plan” was just the beginning).
Svargos is a nice person, if you get to know him better. Image by Cyrille R. W. Chaussepied, made for the Chaos 2D6 game by Armaludis (couldn’t find much about either, though), from: Wikimedia Commons.

4. Fountain Room

  • Connects to rooms 4 (locked door), 27 and 28 (secret doors).
  • Rock enchanted with Continual Light incrusted inside the fountain, bathing the room in weirding light.
  • Fountain flows with magic water; roll 1d6 for anyone who drinks it and check the table below to see what happens. These effects only happen when the water is drank at the fountain.
  • One of three bodyguards of the trader in room 2 can be found here, blind after drinking the fountain’s water; they narrowly escaped the troll, after snatching his key to this room.
  • The bodyguard wants to: be brought back to their friend the trader; be cured of their blindness; avoid the troll at all costs.
  • The secret doors, disguised to look like part of the walls, can be opened by pressing small pressure plates in them, sliding to the right.
d6 (Fountain’s Water)Effects
1Poison: save versus poison to avoid death.
2–3Blindness: save versus spells to avoid being blinded (like Light).
4–6Bless: save versus spells to avoid being blessed (like Bless).

5. Central Chamber

  • Connects to rooms 1 (unlocked door), 6 (locked door), 8 (small and narrow gap), 12 (open archway) and 13 (locked door).
  • No light sources whatsoever, but empty sconces can be found on the walls.
  • A swarm of 3d12 stirges can be found here, some of them still sucking the blood of a freshly dead body – one of the three bodyguards of the trader in room 2.
  • Trap: here’s a crude alarm trap in the floor before the door to room 13, which can be disengaged by cutting the right string; the alarm alerts the troglodyte on room 13.
  • The narrow gap allows a small-sized being (like a halfling) to pass; it can be enlarged, either carefully (but also taking time) or with brute force (but also making loud noises).

6. Dusty Corridor

  • Connects to rooms 5 (locked door), 7 (no door), 8 (one-way door) and 9 (secret door).
  • Also no light sources and with empty sconces on the walls.
  • The floor is covered with dust, which becomes suddenly and noticeably thicker after passing to the side of the secret door.
  • The door to room 8 only opens after sufficient effort is applied.
  • The secret door to room 9 looks like part of the wall, and opens after pressing a small pressure plate on it, sliding to the right.

7. Sliding Stairway

  • Connects to rooms 6 (no door) and 10 (locked door).
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • After climbing two thirds of the stairs, there’s a large, concealed pressure plate on the floor.
  • Trap: stepping on the plate makes the stairs’ degrees turn 45 degrees down, and anyone on them starts to slide down, towards the one-way door to room 8.
  • The trap can be disengaged with thin lockpicks inserted in the narrow space between the plate and the rest of the floor, releasing a spring that’s part of the trap’s mechanism.

8. Prison Room

  • Connects to room 5 (small and narrow gap); a one-way door allows one to come from, but not to, room 7.
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • One of three bodyguards of the trader in room 2 can be found here, with a shocked expression in their face after watching their friend fall to the stirges.
  • The bodyguard wants to: be brought back to their friend the trader; mourn their fallen friend (from room 5); never see another darned stirge again.
  • The remains of other dead delvers can also be found here among he debris, as well as what meager treasure they carried (5d6 × 100cp, 3d6 × 100sp, 2d6 × 10ep, 1d6 × 10gp and 1d6pp).
  • The narrow gap allows a small-sized being (like a halfling) to pass; it can be enlarged, either carefully (but also taking time) or with brute force (but also making loud noises).

9. Secret Stairway

  • Connects to rooms 6 and 10 (secret doors).
  • Five rocks enchantes with Continual Light, incrusted in the walls, illuminate this stairway.
  • Two lever switches, one at each end of the stairway, allows one to open the secret doors from inside.

10. Isiaquo’s Room

  • Connects to rooms 7 (locked door), 9 (secret door) and 11 (small and narrow gap).
  • A single torch near the door to room 7 badly illuminates this room.
  • Isiaquo (M-U2, C), who self-styled himself leader of the delver expedition, took over this room as his personal study. He trusts no one, not even his fellow companions.
  • Isiaquo wants to: reach the hidden cache on room 11; find the magic keys that open the door on room 20; learn spells or acquire items that are effective against the undead.
  • Isiaquo has a false key and is willing to use it to deceive other delvers; he’s less willing to say the magic word that opens the secret door to room 21.
  • Fine drapery depicts an ancient story vaguely related to the Putrid Warrior, but the magic-user does not care and use them as curtains.
  • The chest between the statues contains Isiaquo’s belongings (roll on treasure types U and V), as well as his spellbook (known spells: Sleep and Charm Person, both useless against the Putrid Warrior); he himself carries 1d4+2 daggers.
  • The narrow gap allows a small-sized being (like a halfling) to pass; it can be enlarged, either carefully (but also taking time) or with brute force (but also making loud noises).

11. Hidden Cache

  • Connects to room 10 (small and narrow gap); a thick glass window allows one to see what lies on room 28, as far as their light sources go.
  • Only the faintest light from room 10 enters here, shimmering in the window.
  • Six locked chests contain a large cache: the first two with treasure type B, the next two with treasure type C, one with treasure type D, and the last one with treasure type E, as well as one of the magic keys that open the door on room 20 (on the sixth chest).
  • Each chest is also trapped: the first two with spray, the next two with darts, the next one with blindness and the sixth and last one with a sprung needle; once noticed, they’re easy to disengage with lockpicks.
  • The narrow gap allows a small-sized being (like a halfling) to pass; it can be enlarged, either carefully (but also taking time) or with brute force (but also making loud noises).

12. Altar Chamber

  • Connects to rooms 2 (open archway, leading to stairs and a one-way door), 5 (open archway) and 14 (locked door).
  • Black candles on wall sconces light as one enters this room, casting a sinister light focused on the altar.
  • A horrific-looking tapestry, depicting shockingly surreal scenes (think Hieronymus Bosch) hides the door to room 14.
  • Two monstrous-looking statues flank a stone altar; an inscription on the altar reads, “to gain is to give”.
  • A hidden space under the altar hides a Vampiric Kris, a +1 dagger that restores its user’s HP in an amount equal to half the damage, rounded down, dealt by it in attacks; the kris has an ondulated, crimson blade and a golden handle (laminated).
  • The kris can be properly obtained by a sacrifice (open to interpretation) offered to the altar; prying it open, or jamming the mechanism, etc. allow one to get the dagger too, but also snuff out the candles, let a high-pitching and horrific sound echoes through the chamber, and curse) anyone in the room who fails a save versus spells.

13. Troglodyte’s Lair

  • Connects to rooms 5, 17 and 18 (locked doors).
  • No light sources and no sconces.
  • A troglodyte, Yarrikk, is the oldest living denizen of the lair, and rests here.
  • Yarrikk just wants to be left alone again, having left her tribe before to do so, and she barely tolerates the wererat and the dim troll.
  • Yarrikk tamed the swarm of stirges (currently on room 5) by bringing fresh bodies to them, and installed the alarm trap before her door.
  • If alerted, Yarrikk uses her natural camouflage to blend with the rock walls and surprise any intruders.
  • Aside from her spear, Yarrikk doesn’t carry much: 3d4 gems, 1d10 pieces of jewellery, 2d4 potions and 1d4 scrolls, hidden in a bag under a loose rock of the floor.

14. Wererat’s Lair

  • Connects to rooms 12 (locked door) and 15 (open archway).
  • Four torches, on sconces by the walls’ corners, illuminate the room.
  • A wererat, Kiriana, rests here; a locked chest contains her belongings.
  • Kiriana wants any delvers (including the PCs) to go away, thinking they’re after a bounty over her head, but she doesn’t mind any of the lair’s other denizens, as long as they don’t cross her.
  • Kiriana secretly wants to be cured from the curse of lycantropy that afflicts her, but even she has a hard time admitting it.
  • Despite being a wererat, Kiriana doesn’t like rats that much; she feeds them and employs them as her spies, but she doesn’t allow them to sleep with her, choosing to be alone in the room (at most with a single, small rat on the door outside, acting as sentry); however, once cornered, she may summon them for help.

15. Statue Room

  • Connects to rooms 14 and 16 (open archways).
  • A diffuse light of uncertain origin fills the room.
  • Trap: once a party fully enters the room, portcullises made of iron bars descend in front of the open archways; they can be bent with exceptional strength, but not without producing loud noises; the trap can only be disengaged from room 16 (a small, hidden lever); it and the mechanisms are concealed by a slightly loose plate on the wall near the door.
  • The intended way to leave the room is to solve its puzzle: a large statue near the northeast corner, in the striking visage of an imposing warrior, is hollow and light to push around; a barely visible pressure plate is near the southwest corner; the statue must be pushed to the pressure plate for the portcullises to ascend, freeing the way.

16. Lone Chest Room

  • Connects to rooms 15 (open archway), 18 (unlocked door) and 22 (locked door).
  • Four torches on sconces, they lighten up on the moment a party fully enters the room, but only if they come from room 15.
  • There’s a single chest here, locked and trapped (illusion, of the same warrior depicted on the statue on room 15), unless who entered the room came from room 15, in this case the chest is unlocked, and its trap disarmed.
  • Inside the chest there is a Thunder Hammer, a +2 warhammer that can be used, once per day, to propagate a shockwave (a cone 60′ long and 30′ wide at the far end) once it hits a solid surface; those caught on the quake must save versus breath or they fall on the floor, taking a round to get up again. This hammer is a fine piece of dwarven weaponsmith, and it’s the treasure that the dwarves and their gnome friends are after.

Any similarity with Bobby’s magic club from the old Dungeons & Dragons cartoon (known here in Brazil as Caverna do Dragão) is not coincidental! Speaking of it, Eamon Eliot at Crypt of Stray Thoughts converted the kids’ enchanted weapons for OSE.

17. Damp Corridor

  • Connects to rooms 13 (locked door) and 19 (unlocked door).
  • Bioluminescent moss grows near the door to room 19, giving off a faint light.
  • As one gets closer to the door to room 19, they can hear faint sound of water coming from the other side.

18. Long Corridor

  • Connects to rooms 13 (locked door), 16 (unlocked door) and 20 (secret door); a one-way door allows one to come from, but not to, room 23 (there’s a small amount of debris near the one-way door).
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • Filled with cobwebs, which get thicker near the debris in the middle; a clutter of small spiders makes their nest here (5d4, 1 HD, save versus poison to avoid being paralyzed for 1 turn); there’s a 4-in-6 chance a (giant) crab spider is here, leading the clutter.
  • The secret door to room 20 looks like a wall in a dead end, and it slides to the left once a small plate on it is pressed.

19. Flooded Chamber

  • Connects to rooms 17 and 20 (unlocked doors).
  • Bioluminescent moss growing in the walls glows with faint light, shimmering in the water.
  • Water coming from a small opening closed by iron bars in the east wall fills the middle of the room with a shallow pool, from where a muddled sound of suction can be heard, indicating a small sinkhole.
  • Only a thin stretch near the west wall isn’t covered with water, but an elevated pressure plate, very visible, is in the middle of the stretch.
  • Trap: anyone who steps in the water takes 1d6 electric damage per round, and must save versus paralysis to avoid being, well, paralyzed for one turn by the shock.
  • The trap can be deactivated by stepping in the pressure plate, but it can only be disarmed by dislodging the small shockstone near the sinkhole.
  • A shockstone is a small, yellow rock with 3d4 charges; once pressed against non-isolating matter, a charge is spent and a pulse of electricity is emitted; against living beings, a charge spent allows it to deal 1d6 electric damage to a foe, who must save versus paralysys to avoid being paralyzed for one turn by the shock.
  • There’s a 2-in-6 chance that a green slime can be found here.

20. Magic Door Room

  • Connects to rooms 18 (secret door), 19 (unlocked door), 21 (locked door) and 27 (secret door).
  • No light sources and no sconces.
  • The door to room 21 is large, too heavy to bash through, and can only be opened by putting three magic keys onto three designated openings; once all three keys are inserted; a magical mechanism starts, slowly opening the door with a loud, grinding noise.
  • The secret doors, disguised to look like part of the walls, can be opened by pressing small pressure plates in them, sliding to the right.

21. Putrid Warrior’s Chamber

  • Connects to rooms 20 (locked door) and 26 (secret door).
  • White candles on wall sconces light up as one enters this room, casting an eerie, blue light.
  • Many bodies on the floor: two humans, some goblins and orcs, all slain.
  • The Putrid Warrior can be found here, inside an open alcove in the opposite end of the room; he rises to meet any intruders.
  • The Putrid Warrior looks like a skeleton, clad in a rusted plate mail and a tabard, both full of holes, as well as a creased, horned helmet; a bright, red fire burns from inside his skull.
  • The Putrid Warrior wants to: leave his tomb; gather a new warband and conquer the countryside again; challenge strong opponents; take revenge on those who sealed them (or their descendants).
  • The Putrid Warrior wields Isaljadar the Mournbringer, a +3 sword that became legendary in the warrior’s hands when he was alive (his name was Rucnar Ujimolt back then, as the tapestries on room 10 tell). For anyone else who picks it up, Isaljadar starts as a -3 cursed sword, with its modifier increasing by one after each week, until the blade became completely used to its wielder after a month and a half, when it’s again a +3 weapon.
  • For skeletal warriors such as the Putrid Warrior, use the stats of the mummy. (The “Putrid Warrior” moniker comes from the mummy’s disease ability, that the skeletal warrior also shares.)
  • For each of the other 18 alcoves in the chamber, there is a 5-in-6 chance of it having a skeleton inside, and for each of these skeletons there is a 5-in-6 chance of it being an undead; they may wear a random, assorted melee weapon (sword, short sword, mace, battle axe, warhammer, lance).
  • For each alcove (except the Putrid Warrior’s), roll 1d6 to determine the treasure type of its contents (in crescent order: T, J, K, U, L, V).
  • Inside the noticeably larger alcove of the Putrid Warrior, there is a fabulous treasure (treasure types A and G and I).
  • Finally, the secret door, disguised as part of the wall behind an alcove, can only be opened by pressing a tiny, almost imperceptible pressure plate near the floor.
Please don’t tell me you stirred him from his slumber just to claim his sword. Image from: Wikimedia Commons (no known copyright restrictions).

22. Short Corridor, North

  • Connects to rooms 16 and 23 (locked doors).
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • As one gets closer to the door to room 23, they can hear loud sounds of grunts and snores coming from the other side.

23. Hireling’s Dorm

  • Connects to rooms 22 and 24 (locked doors).
  • No light sources; holes on the walls suggest any sconces were yanked by force.
  • 5d4 goblins and 5d4 orcs rest here, the majority sleeping while 1d4 of each engage in light activities (watch, games, sharpening, self-grooming, etc.).
  • These humanoids were brought by the delvers (Abelon, Bohacas and Isaquao) as hirelings, being promised a share of the treasure.
  • Since few to no treasure was found, they’re growing irritated with their patrons, and aren’t feeling particularly loyal to them.
  • 2d4 wolves (40% pups) are also here, raised by the goblins as pets.

24. Short Corridor, South

  • Connects to rooms 23 and 25 (locked doors).
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • As one gets closer to the door to room 23, they can hear loud sounds of grunts and snores coming from the other side.

25. Abelon and Bohacas’s Room

  • Connects to rooms 24 (locked door) and 26 (secret door).
  • Four torches in sconces illuminate the room.
  • Blankets and shetts became makeshift curtains, hiding sleeping bags, as well as small bags and chests with treasure (roll on treasure types U and V, twice).
  • Abelon (T2, N) and Bohacas (C2, C) rest here; they’re fellow companions of Isaquao, and are waiting for him to discuss if they press on or if they leave the dungeon.
  • Abelon wants to: leave this place (for him, this expedition was already a failure) and grab whatever loot they can carry on the way out to minimize the losses.
  • Bohacas wants to: destroy the Putrid Warrior (to bring her glory), grab enough loot to make a big donation for her church (to bring her prestige).
  • Abelon is the most level-headed of their small group, and he doesn’t trust Isaquao; Bohacas tends to zone out sometimes, claiming to be in attunement with whatever otherworldly beings she listen or worship.
  • Abelon wears leather and carries a crossbow (with 1d20 bolts), a short sword and a trusty dagger; Bocahas wears chain mail and carries a mace, a club and a sling.
  • The secret door to room 26 was marked with chalk, and opens when a small pressure plate (also marked with chalk) on it is pressed, sliding to the left.

26. Trap Door’s Secret Corridor

  • Connects to rooms 21 and 25 (secret doors).
  • No light sources and no sconces.
  • The secret doors, looking like walls in dead ends, can be opened by pressing small pressure plates in them, sliding to the right.
  • The secret door that leads to room 21 has a magic trap, which can only be disengaged by saying a magic word (“Woozykstra“); Isaquao knows the word, but he only wants to venture again into room 21 when he feels he and his chaps are more prepared; the nature of the trap is unknown to the delvers (they only know the door has a magic trap).
  • Trap: anyone who presses the door’s plate without uttering the magic word is teleported to a random room of the dungeon (excluding room 21) if they fail a save versus spells, while those who did it and passed their save are teleported back to the entrance (room 1).

27. Secret Low Passageway

  • Connects to rooms 4 and 20 (secret doors).
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • This passageway goes below rooms 7 and 9, with the ceiling getting slanted under the stairways (this, of course, reveals the existence of the secret stairway, to those who didn’t found it before).

28. Secret Corridor and Vista

  • Connects to room 4 (secret door); a thick glass window allows one to see what lies on room 11, as far as their light sources go.
  • No light sources, with empty sconces on the walls.
  • This passageway slants upwards when going from room 4 to the window.

Dynamic Denizen’s Table

The table below is an Adversary Roster, as developed and explained in The Alexandrian, for some important denizens of the dungeon. Not all possible encounters are here, since some are merely wildlife inhabitants (like the fire beetles and the giant shrews, for example), and others are purposefully on the move, searching for something (like the dwarves and the gnomes); the random encounter table dynamics’ are perfectly serviceable for these.

DenizenStatusAreas
The traderMostly StationaryRoom 2 (90%), Room 1 (10%, and probably leaving the dungeon)
Bodyguard 1StationaryRoom 4 (blind)
Bodyguard 3StationaryRoom 8 (shocked)
Svargos the Moss-CoatedStationaryRoom 3
Yarrikk and her stirgesRoamingRoom 13 (50%), Room 5 (30%), Room 17 (10%), Room 18 (10%)
Kiriana and her ratsRoamingRoom 14 (50%), Room 12 (30%), Room 15 (10%), Room 16 (10%)
Goblin and orc hirelingsMostly Stationary (only patrols* and small (1d4) groups outside of Room 23)Room 23 (70%, majority here, including their wolves**), Room 22 (10%), Room 24 (10%), Room 25 (10%)
IsaquaoMostly StationatyRoom 10 (90%), Room 9 (10%)
AbelonRoamingRoom 25 (40%), Room 26 (20%), Room 23 (20%), Room 24 (10%), Room 22 (10%)
BohacasMostly StationaryRoom 25 (60%), Room 26 (40%)
The Putrid WarriorStationary until freed, then RoamingRoom 21
* Patrols appear on the random encounter table. ** Not all wolves are here, as evidenced by their presence on the random encounter table.

By ashzealot

Tabletop roleplaying games are my main blogging interest... for now! Primarily posting in English, but will sometimes do it in Portuguese. I'm also: Brazilian (and I voted for Haddad), very leftist, white cishet (but count me in as a bipoc/lgbtqa+/queer ally). Pronouns: he/him (ele/dele).

3 replies on “Lair of the Putrid Warrior”

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