Monday, July 13, 2015

The Blade of the Serpent

The Blade of the Serpent, the latest adventure for Exiled in Eris by Christian Conkle, is now available for download on and all OneBookShelf online stores!

The Blade of the Serpent is an adventure scenario for the Exiled in Eris RPG by Christian Conkle. The scenario is intended for four to six player characters of second or third level. In order to play this scenario, a game master requires Exiled in Eris by Christian Conkle.

The scenario begins with the theft of a valuable antique, the Blade of the Serpent, on the eve of its gift to a visiting foreign ambassador. The player characters are hired by a wealthy nobleman to retrieve the blade and return it before the ambassador returns to his homeland.

Within this scenario, player characters can expect deep role-playing investigation, thrilling aerial chases, and deep delves into the heart of an ancient city. There they will face a giant octopus, albino alligators, cunning rat-men, a giant two-headed snake, and the treacherous nobility of Norukar!

Using This Scenario
Players should refrain from reading further. What follows is spoiler-filled information for the game master on what this scenario entails and how best to use it.

The scenario is split into five chapters followed by four appendices.

Chapter 1: The Messenger takes place in the luxurious penthouse of Duke Rylar, an important nobleman in the Norukarian aristocracy. This chapter provides material to support an interview with the duke and his head of security, as well as detailed information regarding the duke’s household. Evidence uncovered during this interview should suggest an inside job committed by a member of the household staff. Any attempt to question the household staff leads immediately into a high speed chase scene as the head of security tries to flee with his paramour, whom he knows is responsible for the theft. The chase scene is resolved as a mini-game. Rules and guidelines are provided to help apply the Basic Roleplaying chase rules to help resolve this scene.

Chapter 2: Finding Marika follows the player characters as they travel to Harken Tower and into the under-city to find the recipient of the stolen blade. Random encounters are provided to provide flavor to the otherwise uneventful journey. At their destination, they meet a loquacious cyberdroid overseer, presenting the game master with plenty of opportunity to role-play using pre-generated dialogue. This chapter also provides in-dialogue exposition on the social system of Norukar and its under-city.

Chapter 3: The Under-City follows the player characters as they learn that Marika has been kidnapped. Malika left behind a trail of clues to follow that lead into the foundations of the city. Depending on the choices made by the players and outcomes of the player characters’ actions, they will either follow the kidnapper through a secret passage directly to his hideout in a secret temple, become trapped and lost and must find a way back to safety, or will take a perilous trip through tunnels and chambers filled with monsters and danger.

Along the way they have an opportunity to encounter a warren of intelligent rats called roshu. Whether the encounter ends in cooperation or a bloodbath is up to the player characters. Ultimately, the player characters will either give up the investigation, returning to the surface in order to try a different strategy, or they will persevere and find the secret temple of the snake god.

The temple is filled with cultists gathering to sacrifice Marika to their ophidian god. The scene provides guidance for game masters should the players choose to infiltrate disguised as cultists, perform a frontal assault against the front door, or infiltrate through a secret passage. The player characters have an opportunity to end the story here in a thrilling battle against evil cultists. In addition, a back-up plan is provided to game masters if the player characters are incapacitated or captured.

Chapter 4: The Raid on Harken Tower provides an alternative ending should the player characters fail to end the scenario in the temple. This chapter provides game masters with information to support an infiltration of a secure penthouse mansion to retrieve the blade. Whether the player characters use guile or violence is up to them.

Chapter 5: Possible Outcomes presents several endings to this scenario, each with various permutations. All of the outcomes along with potential consequences are provided at the conclusion of the scenario.

Appendix A: The City of the Gods includes a brief guide to the city of Norukar including its geography, history, and level of technology. This section provides context and background on the setting for the game master and player alike.

Appendix B: Other NPCs details several non-player character personalities for use by the game master to populate Norukar with informants, allies, places to hide, or somewhere to sell stolen goods.

Appendix C: The Blade of the Serpent describes the Blade of the Serpent in terms of an artifact of the Sdara Vatra with a complete history and provenance and game statistics.

Appendix D: New Actions offers new rules for breaking down doors and picking locks.

Suggested character dialogue is provided throughout the scenario to help game masters role-play certain non-player characters.

The player characters are adventurers and treasure seekers reknowned for recovering lost relics. Duke Rylar is a collector of treasures and is aware of the player characters and their reputation. Perhaps the player characters have even worked for Duke Rylar in the past.

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