village of the dead

Dungeons & Dragons: Adventure Prompts

 1. Traveling through a particularly dense part of an elder forest, the adventurers come across eery, man-sized totems fashioned from animal bone, furs and hide looming over the roadside. Though dead and motionless, its almost as if there were eyes watching them from the dark, hollow sockets, following their every move.
They come across a small but heavily fortified village, a few simple cottages hiding behind a tall, wooden wall. The inhabitants wear grim and weary expressions on their faces and all are armed to the teeth. Salt is laid out in front of every doorframe and window board and talismans to ward off evil hang over every doorstep.
When questioned about the totems lining the road outside, the villagers seem to fall into complete and utter terror.
Then the lights of the village suddenly go out.

 2. TROLLS! IN THE DUNGEON! TROLLS IN THE DUNGEON

 3. A new religion has been founded and it is already passing pamphlets and sending heralds and priests to voice the new scripture out to the people. All’s well, you can never have enough gods to worship and blame for all your troubles in your life.
There’s only one problem.
Their new deity happens to be an ancient red dragon.

4. An elder entity from beyond space and time has been watching our adventurers for quite some time and finds their actions of chaotic heroics highly amusing. So much so, it decides to kidnap them and have them run through a dungeon of terror and geometric madness for its entertainment, promising three wishes to the victor.
Victor. Singular.

 5. An accident in an alchemists lab caused the many hundreds of potions stored inside to be shattered and their liquid contents to vaporize and spread and mingle in the form of a multicolored gaseous cloud that is now covering the town and infecting its inhabitants with random arcane effects.

6. A town painted in bloody smiles, an ivory altar rising from obsidian tiles
  Their eyes so hollow, as their god they follow
  To bring forth the lamb for the slaughter, all to appease to his eternal laughter
  They welcome you with open arms, and hide the bodies under the soil of their farms
  They wait for you to sleep so tight, then they slit your throat the same night.

7. The Vassa'li-Estate, once the proud and shining home of an old noble family, now stands abandoned and grey amidst its rotting lands.
Locust swarms surround the building and feast on the flesh of those poor foolish enough to set foot on the family estate, while the river that springs forth from a source on the Vassa'li lands has become as deadly toxin, poisoning the surrounding soil of the farmland, driving its inhabitants away.
They say the Vassa'li have broken the sacred laws of hospitality, and that the gods are punishing them for their transgression.
But what really lurks beneath the estate does not swear its allegiance to a divine curse…

8. They are there. You know they are. They creep behind the walls and crawl through the shadows of your home. They hide under your children’s beds, grinning and licking the drivel off their teeth.
Their arms are long and their hands are strong, as they take your child out of its crib and vanish into the night.
They dwell in the forests, under crooked roots and in dark leaved trees, their eyes lit with deceitful innocence and their smiles wide and sharp.
They wear crowns of thorns and berries, their faces as fair as a dying summer.
They are known as the lords and ladies. The Fair Folk. Fey or Fae.
They are beautiful. They are amicable. They are promising. They are gifting.
But they are not nice.
They are not good.
They are the Fair Folk, and they are coming.

9. Every night, people vanish. Old and young, strong and weak, poor and rich. They are robbed off the streets, out of the safety of their homes, always in the shadow of the night.
The only signs of a culprit even existing are the ripped off doors and foot-shaped craters in the stone roads and the cracks in the walls of the large, shovel-like hands heaving the creature’s way up the buildings.
The city does not dare to sleep. The guards too terrified and understaffed to deal with this creature. But one thing they know.
The creature is multiplying.

10. Ever since the Blood Moon rose above the village, madness has been spreading like a plague. Randomly does a villager stop dead in their tracks, gaze up at the dark-veined sky and laugh at the grinning moon, gouging out their eyes with their own fingers while screaming in a language foreign to this and any other world.
And the Blood Moon, it hangs there, watching and grinning and feasting on the madness, its insides bulging and boiling - ready to give birth to a new Child of the Far Elder Realms.

11. One of the party members comes across a mysterious goliath gentlemen, who offers them the opportunity of a lifetime, presenting them with a strange deck of cards and ushers them to pick a single card from it.

12. A rift to the Elemental Plane of Water opens in the middle of a green valley, flooding it and the surrounding landscape with currents of ocean water and spilling all sorts of elemental creatures forth into the world - and threatens to drown the entire land if it is not closed.

13. An ancient Vampire seeks final death - but his hunger for blood has corrupted his mind to such primal thoughts that he can barely even remember his name. In desperation, he sends a servant with notices into the nearby towns, putting an anonymous contract on his own head.

14. One of the town’s graves has upturned in the night - the grave of a man that died through a horrible accident. But now his course stalks the night as a revenant and seeks out vengeance against his murderer.

15. The heroes notice that curious posters have appeared throughout the land - and discover, that a playwright has apparently started to adapt their adventures for the stage! As they visit one of the plays, they discover that unfortunately, the playwright chose to ridicule a long-term enemy of the party in his adaptation, and now this enemy seeks grim satisfaction against the playwright.

16. A powerful Lich has awoken from his centuries-long slumber and seeks to further his arcane knowledge and magic experiments. The heroes hear of this, and rush to end this potential threat…
Only to discover that the Lich has apparently applied as a lecturer at an esteemed arcane university, and is thus as a member of this facility and protected by its sanctioned laws.

17. A glabrezu, a heinous treachery demon has taken on the shape of a deva and is guiding a solitary village down the path of corruption, disguised as wisdoms and commands of the gods.

18. A young humanoid approaches the party, face hidden under a cowl. They ask the adventurers in aid of finding their parents, whom they have lost sight of a long time ago. When asked to reveal their face first, the humanoid reveals the glowing eyes of a celestial and the dark, curved horns of a fiend.

19. The party is approached by a harvester devil, who promises them a wish if they aid him in claiming the overdue soul of a wizard, who plans to escape their contract by turning into a Lich.

20. A succubus has opened a lucrative business in the royal city, her customers including several high-ranking members of the court. Using her charm and skills of persuasion, the succubus goes on to sell information to both cults of demons and darchdevils.
Now, two representatives of both cults, one demon, one devil, approach the party and bid them to kill the succubus and extract whatever information she may have on the other cult.

21. A crafty bunch of imps have infested the holy temple of a good-aligned deity and start turning the residing friars and paladins against each other with their pranks, whispers and invisible shenanigans.

22. A high-ranking pit fiend appears out of nowhere in front of the party. But, instead of attacking, he goes on his knees and asks for redemption…

23.  A letter has been sent to bards and musicians throughout the land! An ancient copper dragon and self-called lover of the fine arts announces that he is about to host the greatest musical competition of all time: Whoever writes him the most beautiful song and performs it in front of him and the assembled crowd, shall receive a great, legendary artifact in the dragon’s possession.

24. Good is not soft. It is a fact that applies to many of the metallic dragons, as their sense of good and evil and the means necessary to do the one and end the other is vastly different from that of most mortals. A group of bronze dragons has therefor decided that the only way to achieve peace in the world, would be by subjugating the mortal races under their benevolent rule.

25. Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons. A well known idiom and wisdom that the common folk adhere to. Such an idiom apparently does not exist for the dragon’s themselves, as a young copper dragon believed it to be funny to steal two objects from the horde of two chromatic dragons and hide them in the other’s horde, laughing as the two chromatic drakes in their fury do battle over the landscape - and causing heavy casualties amongst the poor people that are helplessly stuck between them.

26. Storm clouds gather and brew above the endless desert. A mysterious, blue haired stranger appears in the city of a wealthy sultan and bends the knee, proposing for the sultan’s eldest child’s hand in marriage. As the sultan refuses, the mysterious stranger angrily reveals his true form, that of an ancient blue dragon and carries the sultan’s child off to his lair. A typical damsel in distress-quest, nothing new to hard-boiled adventurers…
But under the golden facade of the sultan’s palace hides rot and deceit, and the sultan’s child does not seem too eager to return to their father…

27. After hundreds of years, a terrible doom has awakened under the ice of the northern islands. A terrible white archdrake, a beast of primordial winter and elemental fury, its mere presence causes summer itself to turn into the coldest winter. Soon, it will spread its eternal blizzard all over the world.

28. A city under siege - a chromatic dragon of great size and strength furiously lashes out against the city walls. The citizens ask the adventurers to slay the beast, but when confronted, the dragon reveals its true intention: To save their child, held captive as an exotic pet by the king.

29. The Hobgoblins have decided to play against the rules of land-based warfare and have taken to the seas, building an entire armada of ships under the command of their new Warchief.
Yet, when  one vessel of their fleet is one day captured and the crew questioned, not only is the ship empty of loot or even rations besides of weaponry and the Hobgoblin soldiers seem to babble only of one thing:
“The Deep Lord.”

30. A drunken sailor comes up to the party and tries to sell them some trinkets and garbage he fished out of the sea. Next to broken compasses, an old cutlass and some sea-glass baubles however, there is a shining, round stone stone as big as one’s head, pearl-like and shimmering.
And there’s something moving inside.

31. On a travel over sea, a terrible storm breaks out, capturing the ship the party travels on and shattering it against the rocky shore of a small island near the mainland.
As the party awakes, not only do they find their means of travel and return destroyed, but the coast of the mainland steadily growing smaller in the distance, as the small island swims away with them on it.

32.  Hiring afoot! The captain of a harboring ship recently lost their crew after a falling out and is now seeking a replacement. The goal? A fabled island in the far east, where according to old documents the captain has discovered, an ancient temple to a forgotten deity lies in hiding…

33. There are rumors going about of a shipment of actual dragon eggs having appeared on the black market, sold by an individual known as Kaveth Dyr.

34. An infamous criminal has escaped from prison where he was awaiting his execution. The town guard warn the population that the criminal was once a study of the magic school of Illusions - meaning he could be hiding anywhere or as anyone.

35. One of the temples of the gods has been desecrated - offensive graffiti smeared in goat-blood on the wall, feces stains on the doorstep, and symbols of the deity’s divine rival are hung over its gate.
The priests are now seeking aid in finding the culprit, before the angry planetar that  is currently residing within the temple and was send by the deity starts rampaging through the town.

36. A rat plague is rampaging through the town - not rats as in tiny vermin, but bloody huge, spike-sprouting, rabid Dire Rats as big as dogs.

37. A rich noblewoman is looking into expanding her collection of ancient artifacts and scriptures - promising a grand reward for any adventurers willing to retrieve or sell such artifacts to her.
Such a shame that these adventuring parties often never return from the same ruin she always sends each team to…

38. Over the course of the last three weeks, several of the young women of the village have gone missing. The party is hired to look into the mysterious disappearances, only to see that the women weren’t being kidnapped, but saved…

39. A young wizard has set up shop in the village and is promptly being swarmed by the locals for all sorts of potions and spells and charms to aid them in their every-day business. At first business goes well, but very soon things change as the various charms and potions show weird, nasty side-effects on the villagers…

40. Ominous calls and whispers echo through the night, sending chills down the people’s spine and causing the hooting of nightly owls to shush. In the morning there is much uproar and panic, as the villagers find the old graveyard entirely uprooted - every single grave desecrated and empty.

41. Near a small fishing village, a coven of sea hags have made their home on a offshore crag rising out of the sea. In return for worship and a yearly tribute, they gift the village with their nets full of fishes and clams that carry pure pearls within. A fair trade…
Where it not for the fact that the tribute consisted of this year’s firstborn child.

42. A farmer reports strange happenings to occur on his farmstead - the crops are withering, in the night whispers sound from behind the walls and tiny footprints are found on the wooden floor that belong to no human or beast.

43. A traveling merchant comes through the village, carrying nothing on him but a small satchel on his side. The merchant gives no trade, but sells exactly what anyone asks him for from his bag, but never demands gold - only a favor.

44. A young priest of the pantheon’s sun god, eager to prove himself and the authority of the sun deity has come to the village and moved into the old church. From there, he begins a crusade against the ancient traditions of the village - such as the reverence of the woodland spirits, fey creatures and calling to the forefather’s spirits for guidance and started to tear down the old stone circles meant for bringing peace offerings to the woods- thus starting a deep, escalating rivalry between him and the village pellar.

45. Thirty years ago, a child went missing in the woods near the village. All searching was for naught, and the villagers had to hold the funeral rites over an empty grave.
Now, thirty years later on the night of an empty moon - the child stands on its parent’s doorstep once again, not aged a day, asking what’s for supper.

White people really do not understand the idea of cultural appropriation so I’m gonna explain it to you one y’alls level okay? Bc the absurdity of these counter-arguments I’m getting is out of hand, and I’m tired of arguing with people so far beneath my level on a subject that harms me more than them.

You live in a little village where everyone is identified by the clothes they wear. Everyone in the village has a blue shirt. Your family has a blue shirt with polka dots on it. The people in your village eat lots of tasty yellow fruit with a special mixture of spices and pray to a fruit god every time you eat them. You also eat lots of nuts, but that’s not as important. This is your village’s culture. 

There is rumored to be a village to the west of you, where everyone is given a special toy shaped like an animal when they are born. It is very important to every individual, and means a lot to them. They keep it and polish it all their lives, and it is burned when they die. They eat special starchy balls full of meat, but also once a month,make a drink that honors their dead. This is their culture.

If…

The two villages have grown bigger and bigger over time, which makes them spread closer and closer to eaach other. There are no big territorial battles- the two villages like each other and sometimes share resources. If someone from the first village passes through the second, someone might give them some of their food for the trip and vice versa, so now some people in each village like and sometimes make the food of the other. A few people who have made close friends with people in the other village begin wearing colored shirts like them, or giving their children a special animal doll because someone from that village explained why that was special and invited them to do so. Things from each culture are shared with respect and friendship, and this happened naturally. This is CULTURAL INTEGRATION.

If….

The shirt-wearing village considers itself bigger and stronger. They have invented spears that help them hunt, but think maybe hunting would be even easier if they had more wood from the other villages territory, and less competition. So they decide to invade, fight and kill people in the animal-doll village. They kill some of their stronger warriors and subdue the rest of the villagers. When they are done, they let these villagers into their village as long as they agree to stop carving animal dolls, as long as they agree to learn their language, and as long as they agree to eat and dress like them, and leave their culture behind. This is CULTURAL ASSIMILATION.

If….

People from the two villages see each other from time to time but aren’t all that friendly. The shirt-wearing village likes the look of the dolls from the animal-doll village, and decides to make their own just like them, without asking. They’ve heard the dolls have a complex ceremony and meaning, but they don’t care. To the animal-doll village’s dismay, they learn that the shirt-wearers have been making ‘soulless’ animal dolls that are not connected to a villager, are not prayed over the right way, and in their belief is a dead and cursed thing. They never asked, and they did not follow the rules. In the meantime, many shirt-wearers steal fish from the animal-doll village’s fishing cages, stomp on their crops for fun when they are drunk, and make rude faces at them when they see them in the fields. They learn how to make the special drink they commune with the dead with, but drink it all the time, carelessly, and still won’t talk nicely to the animal-doll village people. They are mostly disrespectful, but still take things from the other village without being nice to them, and without asking. They enjoy the things the animal-doll people make, but do not enjoy them, and cause them suffering. This is CULTURAL APPROPRIATION.

And lastly….

You, a shirt-wearer with a blue spotted shirt, are playing with a toy. Another child comes up to you and in a friendly manner, asks to play. You hand them your toy. This is sharing.

Another day, a different child with a red shirt points at your blue shirt, makes fun of it, and takes your toy. This is stealing. This is more like Cultural Appropriation.

You guys need to learn that there are more ways for a culture to spread than just Appropriation. Cultural Appropriation is not ‘the sharing of a culture’. Fighting Cultural Appropriation does not keep cultures from evolving. It is simply pointing out that consent matters with culture, too, and when you take something from a culture you still disrespect and oppress, it’s not consensual, and the people do not have to let you do it.

Villain or Hero Edition:

-“You’re going to save them and for what? They don’t appreciate you!”

-“You spill your blood for this city/village and for what? So they can never know the name of the man/woman who saved their miserable lives?”

-“How many times are you going to bleed for them?”

-“Aren’t you tired yet? Haven’t you had enough?”

-“Despair, misery, and chaos. It’s like air to me. But to watch them suffer is much more entertaining.”

-“Look at their miserable lives and tell me what you see. They’re just begging for you to end them.”

-“You’re conflicted I can see it. You don’t want to be the hero but you’re not evil enough to be the villain. So what are you?”

-“You can’t be nothing because you have to be something.”

-“You can’t be nobody you have to be somebody. They need you. Help them.”

-“You’ve shed enough blood. It’s time to stop. You’ve avenged their deaths enough.”

-“You’ve fought until your face was bloody, your ribs cracked, and your soul broken. How much more can you give to them!”

-“You won’t be satisfied until your dead.”

-“This city/village has torn you apart. They don’t deserve anymore saving.”

-“You’d give your soul to them? They won’t ever be satisfied until you’re dead.”

-“You give and you give and give when is it your turn to take?”

-“You’ll burn this city/village to the ground. Murder its people. And then will you be satisfied?”

-“I can’t watch you tear yourself apart anymore for these people.”

-“You’re cruel.”

-“You’ve been caught. There’s nothing more you can do so why are you still fighting?”

-“It’s over. It was a long war filled with countless bodies and bloodshed. So stop…it’s over.”

-“I know you. You aren’t this terrible person people see you as and made you become. There’s still some light within you. I see it…”

-“What has the world done to you to make you feel this broken that you feel the need to hurt other people?”

-“You hurt others because they hurt you.”

-“I can see the torment within you. I can especially tell by the way you mangle the bodies of your enemies.”

-“You don’t owe people anything else.”

-“You’re like the sun and moon. You can either be the light that guides peoples lives to a better world. Or you can be the moon and darken their world. Or- you can be an eclipse and be a little bit of both good and evil.”

-“What do YOU want to become?”

-“You’re the only one who can give others hope.”

-“If it wasn’t for you we’d all be dead.”

-“The histories will never know who really saved us because he/she didn’t want to be known as a hero.”

-“Don’t die for our selfish selves.”

-“You brought this upon yourself.”

-“You can either save lives or take them. So which is it? Who will you become?”

-“You say you’d burn the city/village to the ground. But what happens when you’re standing on a pile of ash and smoke with no subjects to rule?”

-“Your mentor molded you to be a monster.”

-“Your mentor molded you to be a beckon of hope for others.”

-“They will never bow to you.”

-“You’re nothing but a usurper from a foreign place to us. We will never call you King/Queen.”

-“You hide behind a mask all the time and I don’t mean the one upon your face.”

-“Of all the things to have happened to you are you still capable of love?”

-“You were born a villain but you will die a hero.”

-“You were born a hero but will die a villain.”

-“You’ve changed since we first met. You’re becoming something I don’t recognize anymore.”

-“You’re no longer a man. You’re a beast.”

-“Greatness was thrust upon you but you decided not to take it. Why?”

-“We don’t choose these roles they just happen.”

-“I won’t watch you die.”

-“What are you fighting for?”

-“Fates can be changed there’s still time.”

-“Your fate isn’t set in stone.”

-“There’s pain in my chest every time I see you in anguish.”

-“You never meant anything to them. So you turned into the thing they feared the most to leave an impression upon them.”

-“I wish you could see your worth.”

-“Your life is not worth the weight of gold they will pay you for helping them.”

-“I won’t watch you become someone I don’t recognize.”

-“I can’t even say who are you becoming because I don’t even know what you are anymore.

-"When they write of your history they will say it began on this day.”

-“Your scars are a reminder of who you were. So never forget who bled for this village/city. Who it was that saved the damned and the good. Who it was that almost died for them. Who it was that became a legend in their eyes. A legend to be remembered a thousand years from now.”

Medieval villagers mutilated the dead to stop them rising, study finds

A study by archaeologists has revealed certain people in medieval Yorkshire were so afraid of the dead they chopped, smashed and burned their skeletons to make sure they stayed in their graves.

The research published by Historic England and the University of Southampton may represent the first scientific evidence in England of attempts to prevent the dead from walking and harming the living – still common in folklore in many parts of the world.

The archaeologists who studied a collection of human bones – including the remains of adults, teenagers and children excavated more than half a century ago, and dated back to the period between the 11th and 14th century – rejected gruesome possibilities including cannibalism in times of famine, or the massacre of outsiders. The cut marks were in the wrong place for butchery, and isotope analysis of the teeth showed that the people came from the same area as the villagers of Wharram Percy in North Yorkshire – a once flourishing village which had been completely deserted by the early 16th century. Read more.

Jure Grando Alilović, who died in 1656, is potentially the first person in history to have been described as a ‘vampire’. According to legend he would rise from his grave at night and terrorise the small village in Croatia where he had lived. 

The legend describes a 16 year period following his death where villagers would receive knocks on their door in the dead of night, and within a few days someone within that household would die. Alilović’s widow also reported seeing her dead husband at her bedroom window, she claimed that he sexually assaulted her, and had an expression on his face like he was smiling and gasping for breath.

The village decided to dig up Alilović’s corpse after living with this terror for 16 years. When the exhumed his body they found that he was perfectly preserved and had a smile on his face. They initially attempted to stab him through the heart, but allegedly the stick could not penetrate his skin. One of the villagers then decided to behead him, and began to saw off his head. The legend states that as soon as the saw tore his skin Alilović screamed and blood started pouring from the wound. Once he was decapitated the nightly terror stopped.

Unwanted By-product

In a friend’s homebrew campaign we were looking into dissapearances in a rural farm community. The local humans suspected the nearby Kobolds, but the kobolds also reported missing “persons”. A good perception roll had our cleric notice that the kobolds were making attempts to shy away from the party and gesturing their hatchlings inside their huts. The cleric wrote this off as simple racial mistrust, but our ranger suspected more and demanded we camp near the kobold village in hopes of seeing something suspicious.

It just so happened that in the wee hours of the night a kobold snuck over to the camp to try and steal some food. The ranger pinned it down and attempted to interrogate, but underestimated his strength and knocked the kobold out as he bopped him in the head with the pommel of his sword. Then this exchange took place:

Cleric: Well, now ya done it. I suggest we pack up and get lost before the village catches wind of this.

Ranger: It’s not dead, hell it could have been an assassin! I want to loot it to check for weapons.

DM: save for a string of clay beads, the kobold is entirely naked and unarmed.

Ranger: I’ve got the lore feat, I’d catch any trickery. I want to go all airport security on him, I bet he’s packing poison.

DM: Upon an invasive and passionate cavity search you fail to find any tools of mischief. But you do harvest several drops of a salty-

Ranger: let’s just get out of here!

  • Gaston: I'm especially good at EGG-spectorating
  • Villagers:
  • Tom, Dick, and Stanley:
  • Distant Wolves:
  • Belle's Dead Mother:
  • Lefou: HAHHAAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHHA THAT WAS FUNNY HAHAHAHA MY WHAT A GUY THAT GASTON

Jesus Christ.

NPR just told me that Betsy Devos’s response to campus sexual assault is to meet with men’s rights activists.

We were told we would not survive this presidency, but let me know how I can help you.

So I looked on wego and some Japan stores to see what’s poppin and what I should avoid and not spend money on.

And it’s worse than I expected…. call 911. J-fashion is deceased. Someone come pick up their golfing grandpa.

Ok I’m gonna say it. I miss gyaru. Honestly at this point, what would you prefer… Gyaru or this monstrosity??

I tried looking for clothes, and I ended up in the local retirement village. I think my money saving plan will be going quite well.