View Full Version : Help on an Eberron adventure

2007-02-12, 09:56 PM
I'm working on writing up a eberron campaign, and I'm stuck on this one scenario, and I thought perhaps I could ask the community for creative ideas. the setup is as follows:
Party Level: 2nd-3rd
Location: a small villaige in thrane and surround area
Enemies: a 3rd level Favored Soul Huecuva* (*undead divine caster, FF), and an array of zombified villaigers (possibly using variant zombies from libris mortis)
Events: The party comes across a seemingly deserted thranish villiage. The party is attacked by undead villiagers, but archers hidden in the buildings come to their aid. The surviving villiagers are holed up in their homes, and are under nightly attack by their former local preist. those who the preist kills rise as zombies a few hours after. The local palladins went out to smite the horror, but only the rookie (2nd lvl) came back, and is now traumatized, but is willing to help the party kill the thing. The party's task is to, well, kill the huecuva.

My problem is this: I want a tragic story that leads to the conditions of the adventure, but I cant seem to make it fit together, and there are lots of blank places. Here's what I have so far:
The villiage was visited by a group of Silver Torch hatemongers, who started preaching about the non-humans of thrane working to destroy the country, changelings and shifters in league with the surviving lycanthropes who are apparently everywhere, yadah yadah yadah, usual moronic bile. they whip the townsfolk up into a frenzy, and they wind up buring alive the local changeling family in their own home, including the local preist's sweetheart. The Local preist is a young, open-minded NG favored soul who, after the war, requested quiet pastoral duty. Somehow, the Favored Soul walks in on all this and goes into a greif-stricken frenzy, attacking the instigators. In the ensuing battle, both he and the torchers are killed. the townsfolk come to their senses, and set about to cleaning up. However, the next morning, just as they are about to cremate the fallen, the Favored Soul's corpse's flesh melt's off it's bones, and the blackened skeleton gets up and starts killing people.

The whole thing is actually tied to a Lords of Dust plot to weaken thrane through encouraging insane zealotry.

My problems are these:
Why didnt the favored soul interven before things got to the burning stage? where was he? did he know that the torchers were in town?

Why cant the townsfolk leave, or send messengers for help?

What should the landscape around the town be like? how can I make it isolated or cut off?

Can I make this story better? Should I revise the whole scenario? (I just want a tragic story tied to the Silver Torch and involving the party fighting a powerful Huecuva) Can I come up with a better reason for the favored soul to rise as an undead horror?

Any Advice would be most welcome.

2007-02-13, 02:06 AM
To answer your first question, maybe the favored soul was simply afraid at first. Or, I dunno, you state that he walks in on them, which seems to imply he didn't know about it. Maybe the torch mongers went to him first, threatening him in that mafia sort of "read between the lines threatening" way, talking to him about duty, or something. Then he's praying, or something, trying to ignore it, but he hears the cries and can't sit back any longer.

As for any different reasons why the priest might rise as a huecuva... well, I don't know much about the undead in question, or why he'd rise like that, in the general sense. One suggestion I might make is to have the priest killed by the silver flame guys, and then they stay in the town for however long, drinking it up and whatnot, and then he rises later and kills them, then starts on the rest of the town. Just a suggestion.

Why the townsfolk can't leave is pretty tricky. The village would almost have to be fairly isolated. It could possibly be up in the mountains, though I don't actually know much about Eberron itself, so I don't know if this would be feasable. It seems good because it makes the "not sending for help" thing a bit more plausable, and you have the chill wind type of mood setting spookiness going on. Maybe the priest caused a rockslide along the main path, or something.

Or, perhaps the villagers won't leave because there are too many sick/wounded to travel, and they refuse to leave family behind. It still makes the messanger issue tricky, though. The village could be surrounded by treacherous marshland, and the only ones who knew the way through were killed. I dunno, just throwing stuff out there.

2007-02-13, 04:36 PM
First of all: awesome. I love CotSF politics in my Eberron games, and seeing it played out on such a personal level like this should inspire a lot of empathy from the party, once it's explained to them.

Going in reverse order, I like the scenario and the story behind this guy rising as a Huecuva. His faith in his Church was violently shattered in the last moments of his life, and he died in the midst of a murderous rage against presumably-senior clergymen. Justified or not, that's as good a reason as any to rise as a Huecuva in Eberron.

Second, you have a couple of options here. I don't know where in Thrane your party is going to encounter this town, but the two best places would be in the mountains around Daskaran; mountain communities are frequently remote and may only have one reliable road in or out, which can easily be blocked by an enterprising abomination. It's also close to the Thrane/Aundair border, a seat of power for many Flame fanatics, especially Torchers.
The other option would be somewhere in the Burnt Wood, perhaps a former "suburb" of the ruined city of Shadukar. The area's not only remote, but downright creepy, the site of a huge series of battles during the Last War, and, oh, across the river from the Mournland, which can be a fun red herring to throw into the backstory when players are wondering how this happened.

Why the villagers haven't sent for help ties in with the previous question; in the mountains, perhaps the undead have blocked off the only road. In the Burnt Wood, perhaps whatever horrors live there have intensified due to the Huecuva's presence, making it too dangerous for the remaining villagers to get away, assuming most of the PC-class and Warrior villagers have been killed already, and the rest are staying behind to protect the others. Thick forest and marsh terrain is also pretty deadly in its own right, to those who aren't experienced woodsman and/or die easily.

As for why the Favored Soul took so long to intervene, I like either of averagejoe's reasons. The man could quite feasibly be intimidated by a group of priests higher up in the hierarchy, until they got to the point of killing someone, someone he cares about especially, and he snaps.

That help at all? Sounds like a really cool scenario that I might have to steal.

2007-02-13, 10:32 PM
Wow. thanks for the great ideas, and the praise. i was afraid I had come up with a contrived and corny idea. This would be my first serious attempt at a campaign.

Yes, average's idea for the death of the Torchers is a much better idea, and adds extra creepyness and reason for him to come back, and simplify's the logistics.

I Like the idea of placing the town near the burnt wood, as it offers more interesting options and further explains the ease with which the townsfolk could be whipped into frenzy; they have reason to be pissed, living in a bog near the mournland and ruined battlefeilds. And, I guess I understimated the power of coercion when weilded by a seemingly high-ranking "official" who claims to know alot of people. I guess that the Favored Soul figured he would let events run their course and let the people reflect on their folley in the morning, never expecting things to turn violent.

I can highlight the hostility of the surrounding marshland, and the fact that many of the villiagers are suffering from huecuva blight, to prevent anyone from leaving. The presence of ruins nearby gives me a good place for a showdown.

Feel free to steal the scenario, Id be flattered if someone considerd it theft-worthy.
Thanks for all the help, guys

2007-02-13, 11:51 PM
Glad I can help. I dunno about the steal-worthiness, but that's partially because I've already done something kinda similar to this, and my players would all be like, "Jeez, not another town where the undead are trying to wipe out the population."

2007-02-14, 08:22 PM
Sorry to double post, but it isn't as if this thread is bustling with activity.

I had another idea for the priest's story. What if he is killed saving the girl, but the silver flame guys run off after they kill him, sparing her life (maybe not her family's, though.) Then, when the priest rises again, at first he seeks shelter with the girl he loves, and she keeps his secret even though he is hellbent on revenge. Then, after taking his revenge, he kills her, then starts on the rest of the village.