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Weird Wednesday: Snickering Wind

Snickering Wind     CR 2

XP 600
CE haunt (50 ft. by 50 ft.)
Caster Level 2nd
Notice Perception DC 12 (snickering winds emanate from behind you)
hp 4; Trigger location; Reset 10 minutes

Effect When the snickering wind haunt manifests, all creatures in its area must make a DC 13 Will save or be forced to move in a random direction for half of their movement each round for 3d4 rounds. snickering-winds-wereboar_bg__matt_bulahaoCreatures affected by the snickering wind haunt are unable to take any additional movement actions on their turns, and stop if impeded (ending the creature’s movement that turn). The snickering wind haunt is not restricted to any one location and tends to roam about in a 1,000-ft.-radius circle until currents (or other mystical means) carry it elsewhere.

Destruction The snickering wind haunt can be destroyed by presenting a compass or similar navigational device and stating loudly that you have found your way.

Adventure Hook A small mining town has failed to deliver its monthly shipments for some time now, and those sent to investigate haven’t returned. Rumors claim that only the light of foot can reach the settlement—the clumsy are too prone to fall from the sheer cliffs of the canyon protecting it.

[Submitted by Tim Snow!]

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Weird Wednesday (Uralicans Uncut): Lonely Ooze Haunt

revenants grenade

Lonely Ooze Haunt CR 11
XP 12,800
LE haunt (30-ft.-radius of the gateway to the Plane of Ooze)
Caster Level 15th
Notice Perception DC 27 (to see powder on the ground coalesce into the form of an ooze)
hp 22; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day

Effect When this haunt is triggered all creatures within the lonely ooze haunt’s area must make a DC 22 Fortitude save or begin melting, physically turning into an ooze after 1d4+1 rounds. Those that fail the Fortitude save must also make a DC 22 Will save; failure on this second save causes them to become an ooze mentally at the end of the transformation, and the transformation becomes permanent. Nothing short of a wish brings the PC back from a permanent transformation. Before the permanent transformation is complete, it can be countered with a dispel psionics against DC 19. Any type of polymorph spell or power also breaks the transformation. Those that are not permanently transformed revert to their natural form after 1d4+1 hours. Those permanently transformed are instinctually drawn to the gateway. If not stopped, each ooze crawls to the gateway in 2 rounds—when the ooze touches the gateway, it is destroyed and turned into a pile of powder.

Destruction The original pile of powder must be transported through the gate to the Plane of Ooze; it sits at the bottom of Huge size mound of ash at the lone ooze haunt’s base.

Adventure Hook The PC’s are told that xyrx crystals can be modified to power their ship by placing them into the Plane of Ooze. However, no living matter may pass through gateway. Spells and powers, such as dimension door can be used to pass, or devices can be made to place and retrieve the crystals.

Sometime after the Uralicans abandoned this gateway, an ooze living nearby became sentient and intelligent, and was driven to enter the gateway to be among its intelligent ooze peers. It did not know that the passage through the gateway would destroy it, and the ooze’s will to be among its own kind as it perished created this haunt.

 

Play Suggestions For PCs that fail their save, describe in detail how their body begins to melt, as if they have landed feet first in acid. Their skin liquifies and sloughs off, forming a slick puddle on the ground as they slowly sink into their oozy demise. Also, for those that fail the Will save, their thoughts begin to become alien; they start to hunger for carrion and the sensation of touching other oozes. As their eyesight fails, they feel the presence of the gateway and it consumes their being—their only desire is to enter the gateway. If you are using the insanity rules, this experience triggers an insanity check (at a minimum).

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Weird Wednesday (Destiny Derailed): Demons in the Tundra

1280px-Sunset_in_Binii,_SwitzerlandLong before Pradjna was inhabited by humans and gnomes, demons roamed the lands, subjugating the native orcs, goblins, and other species into their own army. The predecessors to the current day inhabitants of the region drove the demons back. As the hellspawn vowed to return in 100 years, the sages concocted a clever plan—during the final battle, the sages’ magic imprisoned the demons’ bodies in the snow, and as long as their bodies remain frozen, the demons are unable to return. However, over time the dimensional wards put in place weakened, allowing the demons some connection back to their frigid corporeal forms. Eager to return, these demons seek to control those that pass by, enlisting help to return to their bodies and break the divide.

Demons in the Tundra CR 8
XP 4,800
CE haunt (20 ft. by 20 ft. area centered on the surface above a buried demon)
Caster Level 8th
Notice Perception DC 30 (to notice ancient buried warning stones written in Draconic)
HP 16; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Something about the color and texture of the ice is amiss; the wind howls, even though there is nothing around for the zephyrs to make noise with.
Effect When this haunt is triggered, creatures of 7 hit dice or less must make a DC 16 Will save or be affected by a lesser geas. The affected creature must bring a humanoid or goblinoid creature to the buried demon and kill their captive. Doing so releases the demon (d100; 1-20 babau, 21-40 nabasu, 41-60 shadow demon, 61-80 succubus demon, 81-100 vrock demon), which thaws out and can act normally after 2d4 hours.
Destruction The physical form of the buried demon must be exposed and a dispel magic, dimensional anchor, or similar spell must be cast, breaking the connection permanently between the realms (thus making the banishment permanent).
Adventure Hook  Recently a higher number of workers than normal have gone missing—one of the missing workers, severely injured, returned and before he died, relayed an improbable tale. A crazed mountain man knocked him out; he awoke, tied up in the middle of the tundra. As the madman chanted out blessings to an unknown being, he began to slowly flense the worker, all the while mumbling something about the “demons can return”. He surely would have died, but a fluke ice crack appeared and the madman fell to his death in a small crevasse. The worker freed himself and managed to get back here, and is eager to give general directions to the spot where he was held, describing some stone markers with “magic” writing on them.

fire-lit mountain 9

 

 

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Maddening May: Bolghar’s Despair

OtherWorldly_Art_Portfolio_Volume_One_Page_20_Image_0001Bolghar’s Despair     CR 8
XP 1,600
CE haunt (30 ft. radius)
Caster Level 8th
Notice Perception DC 22 (to hear the repeated whispers of “kinslayer”)
Hp 8; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Effect: When entering Bolghar’s burial barrow, the anguished haunt manifests. A dwarf clad in rags with pieces of dated armor screams incoherently about dishonor and revenge, then suddenly sobbing about forgiveness and punishment for a grave crime. The haunt harmlessly dissipates but everyone in the haunt’s area must make a DC 19 Will save or develop multiple personality disorder. If the save is failed the character must start taking saving throws every hour to determine which personality dominates.
Every morning and each time the afflicted character is rendered unconscious, he must make a DC 19 Will save; on a failure a different personality takes over. A character’s memories and skills remain unchanged, but the various personalities have no knowledge of each other and deny, often violently, that the other personalities exist.

Personalities (roll a d12)
1-4 Bolghar, the plotter: You are convinced that a person close to you will betray you; you must stop him before he hurts you. A randomly determined party member or NPC is the target of your paranoia. You watch him closely and do not trust him to be alone at any time lest he plot your downfall. Eventually you will have to stop him permanently as your illness progresses—but it must look as an accident, or else the others might become nosy.
5-8 Bolghar, the kinslayer: You have committed a grave crime and you must seek redemption from the randomly determined party member or NPC that you have wronged. He is not aware that it was you who did it, but to be redeemed you must be of aid to him to the best of your abilities.
9-12 Bolghar, the leader: You have been given the honor of leading your family’s expedition to the Dar’Spelun Slugmarsh, or at least you think you should have, instead it is your rival who gained it! You do anything to make him look bad; you frequently voice better ideas and show the others that you are a better suited leader of this expedition.

Destruction: Sprinkling holy water over Bolghar’s tomb while reciting the verse of the Kinslayer destroys the Bolghar’s Despair haunt. Alternatively, speaking to the haunt in Clearwater Caverns and realizing he is Bolghar’s brother then bringing the message of forgiveness to the spirit releases Bolghar from the haunt and allows him to finally rest—this solution also destroys the haunt of Clearwater Caverns.

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Feral Dalliance

Feral DallianceFeral Dalliance CR 6
XP 2,400
CE persistent haunt (15 ft.-radius circle)
Caster Level 6th
Notice Perception DC 24 (to notice the hairs on your body stand on end)
hp 27; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Effect When this haunt is triggered, creatures within its area must make a DC 16 Will save or suddenly grow long, sharp teeth and nails. Over the next round they develop a bite (1d6 for Medium size creatures) and two claw attacks (1d4 for Medium size creatures) for ten rounds. During this time they are simultaneously under the effects of a confusion and rage spell, attacking with their new natural weapons. On the tenth round they go unconscious.

Destruction     Find the remains of the dead mage Goriskarr, and dissolve them in acid under the light of a full moon.

Adventure Hook     An inspired apprentice transmuter with an arrogance greater than his talents, Goriskarr bit off more than he could chew—far more literally than he intended. The young wizard’s progress wasn’t fast enough for him, and he sought out the witches of the wild to enhance his knowledge of transformation. They gave it to Goriskarr, making him a feral creature that roamed the countryside until the academy’s guards tracked him and put the crazed apprentice down. Since then his soul has roamed the spot where he died, spreading his ailment to any that pass by.

 

 

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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Unholy Mass

Unholy Mass     CR 6Mosshammer Castle - Great Hall
XP 2,400
CE haunt (30 ft. radius)

Caster Level 6th
Notice Perception DC 20 (to hear chanting on the wind)
hp 6; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Effect: When this haunt is triggered, ghostly figures appear in the haunt’s area—an evil cleric is conducting a sermon for the vile god of undeath, whom he worshipped in real life. As the sermon abruptly ends any corporeal creature in the haunt’s area suffer 1d8+9 in damage (Will DC 17 for half). Any undead in the haunt’s area regain 1d8+9 hp instead.

Destruction: A cleric of the god of fertility and birth must cast cure light woundsduring the haunt’s manifestation after the haunt has been triggered by a person with a pure heart.

Adventure Hook: Decades ago Shek’mon plagued the surrounding lands with his army of living dead. After years of fear and misery, the paladin order of the Pure of Heart was able to confront the necromancer. They attacked him as Shek’mon was conducting a sermon for his living followers. As the head was cut from his body, negative energy tore through the assembled ranks and killed the majority of the necromancer’s followers and a few paladins as well. With Shek’mon gone the order and their allies easily routed his army. The god of undeath was so displeased with this anticlimactic end to the large army of vile followers that he had Shek’mon bound to relive the final fateful seconds before his death as a haunt over and over again.

 

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

1. Anyone can submit an entry.
2. One entry per person at any one time. An entry must be your own work, not being published previously or considered by any other publisher, and it must original and not infringe upon copyrighted material.
3. All entries become property of Adventureaweek.com, LLP.
4. By submitting an entry you authorize the use of your name and likeness without additional compensation for promotion and advertising purposes in all media.
5. Adventureaweek.com, LLP reserves the right to withdraw or terminate this endeavor at any time without prior notice.
6. All decisions of Adventureaweek.com, LLP and their arbiters are final.
7. There is no compensation provided – any entries are given freely by their creators for use by Adventureaweek.com, LLP in perpetuity.
8. Your statblock must be properly formatted (compare to similar content on the AaWBlog for correct formatting).

 

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Volumengeist (Page Spirit) Creature Template

Volumengeist (Page Spirit) Template

Volumengeists of the Necropus Laruascriptum
A necropus laruascriptum has the special ability to bind a spirit of a slain creature within its pages. When a creature’s spirit becomes bound to one of the enchanted books, it becomes a volumengeist (sometimes referred to as a page spirit) that can later be summoned as a servant via use of the Summon Volumengeist ability of the spellbook.

A volumengeist is a perfect copy of the base creature in its natural state. It bears the appearance of the base creature with no equipment, clothing, armor or weapon of any kind.

Volumengeist (Page Spirit) TemplateThe ghostlike, incorporeal volumengeist is a spirit of unbridled rage and vengeance; it is always Chaotic Evil regardless of the base creature’s original alignment. It maintains a constant demeanor and expression of uncontrollable anger, attempting to direct its wrath at any living target it senses within 500 feet of the necropus laruascriptum it is bound to.

A volumengeist has no memory of its past life and has no means to communicate other than emitting a frightful moan. It cannot speak or be spoken to. It understands the spoken commands of its master who summoned it via supernatural means.

To create a volumengeist, apply the volumengeist template to the base creature stats.

 

Binding a Volumengeist
The ritual of binding required for creating a volumengeist is included within the necropus laruascriptum along with other various preparation rituals. To bind a spirit to the spellbook, a whose spirit is being bound must have died within 10 minutes of the start of the binding ritual attempt. The ritual takes one hour to complete and fails if interrupted. Success of the ritual requires a Spellcraft check (DC 20 + CR of base creature).

To create a volumengeist, there must be at least one blank page within the necropus laruascriptum and the user must define a keyword used to trigger the summoning of that particular volumengeist. The keyword must be written upon the blank page that the volumengeist is being bound to. If the ritual fails then nothing happens, but that page is no longer considered to be blank.

The binding powers of a necropus laruascriptum are finite, and thus can only bind a limited number of spirits within its pages. Volumengeists created from creatures with 5 or less hit dice are considered lesser page spirits, and creatures with higher hit dice are considered greater page spirits. No creature with more than 10 hit dice can be used to create a volumengeist.

A lesser necropus laruascriptumcan bind three lesser page spirits. A greater necropus laruascriptum can bind six lesser page spirits and three greater page spirits.

Once bound to a necropus laruascriptum a volumengeist is harmless and bound to a specific page within the spellbook until it is summoned. When not summoned, the binding page depicts an expertly drawn inked-visage of the volumengeist as a fully animated illustration. When its page is revealed, the bound volumengeist is aware of the observer and its animation displays contempt and anger towards the viewer. The page also highlights the written keyword used as the trigger to summon that particular volumengeist, but any other writing, drawing, or discoloration to the page magically vanishes within moments of being applied.

When a necropus laruascriptumis found, it already has a randomly determined volumengeist bound within it. Each of these is bound to one of the blank pages found in the back of the book.

A found lesser necropus laruascriptum has one lesser page spirit bound within, and a greater necropus laruascriptum has three lesser page spirits and one greater page spirit bound within. Use the following charts to randomly determine what type of volumengeists are inside:

Random Lesser Page Spirits Chart
d10    Volumengeist Type:
1–3    Diminutive Animal or Vermin (1 HD or less)
4–6    Small Animal or Vermin (1-3 HD)
7–9    Medium Animal (4 HD)
10      Humanoid (5 HD)

volumengeist 2

Random Greater Page Spirits Chart
d10    Volumengeist Type:
1–5    Large Animal (6-8 HD)
6–9    Humanoid (6-8 HD)
10      Leveled NPC (10 HD; humanoid)

Summoning a Volumengeist
To summon a volumengeist, the user of the necropus laruascriptum must open the book to reveal the page in which the page spirit is bound. The volumengeist is summoned when the user then speaks the keyword assigned to it.

Summoning a volumengeist requires a standard action (to find the correct page) and functions as a supernatural ability of the necropus laruascriptum. The summoning cannot be prevented by antimagic effects such as the antimagic field spell. Already having the spellbook open to the correct binding page makes summoning a free action. Placing a bookmark in the spellbook or creating a dog-ear to identify a specific binding page also makes summoning a free action provided that only one specific page has been marked.

When a volumengeist is summoned, the character using the necropus laruascriptum to summon it must make a Will save (DC 15 + DC of page spirit being summoned).

If the Will save is failed by the user then the volumengeist turns its full focus and wrath upon the one who summoned it. It is not able to be recalled back to the spellbook and continues to attempt to kill its target (and nothing else) until it is destroyed. If the volumengeist kills the user in this way then the volumengeist itself is destroyed.

If the Will save upon summoning attempt is successful, the user becomes the summoned volumengeist’s master. It manifests in an available space near its master and awaits a command. The page spirit follows any order given to it by its master with unwavering devotion provided that the commanded action is within its abilities. If its master becomes unconscious or otherwise unable to provide verbal commands, the volumengeist defaults to actively defending its master from any perceived threats.

A summoned volumengeist may be recalled back into its binding page as a free action by its master via spoken command.

Destroying a Volumengeist
When a summoned volumengeist reaches zero hit points, the page spirit is released from its bondage and fades away into nothingness (presumably finding peace in the hereafter). When this happens, the keyword for its summoning scribed within the necropus laruascriptum vanishes and the page is once again considered blank.

If the page a volumengeist is bound to is ever destroyed then the page spirit is automatically summoned without a master, and attacks any living creature within range. If a page is torn from the necropus laruascriptum then that page is considered destroyed. In this case, the volumengeist cannot be recalled to the spellbook (since the page binding it has been destroyed), and finds restful peace once its incorporeal form is destroyed.

If a volumengeist is successfully turned, instead of the normal effects of turning an undead creature, the page spirit is immediately returned to its binding page. When returned to the necropus laruascriptum this way, a page spirit cannot be summoned again for a number of hours equal to the total number of hit dice turned.

 

Volumengeist (Page Spirit) Template
Creatures with the volumengeist (or page spirit) template are bound to a necropus laruascriptum, whim to the will of the spellbook’s owner.

Challenge Rating: Same as base creature +2

Size: The creature’s sized does not change.

Type: The creature’s type changes to undead (do not modify base attack, saves or skills), change to incorporeal subtype

Armor Class: The creature loses any natural armor bonus and gains a deflection bonus equal to its Charisma modifier.

Hit Dice: Change to d8 for all class levels.

Defensive Abilities: Retains the defensive capabilities of the base creature except for those that depend on a corporeal form to function. A volumengeist gains the incorporeal ability, undead traits and darkvision 60 feet.

Speed/Movement: A volumengeist retains the same movement types as the base creature at 30 feet (perfect maneuvering if a fly speed) unless base creature has a higher speed for the give movement type. A volumengeist cannot travel beyond 500 feet of the necropus laruascriptum it is bound to, the limit of this range acts as an impenetrable wall of force to the volumengeist.

Attack: Since the incorporeal form of a volumengeist assumes only the natural form of the base creature (no clothes, equipment, weapons, or armor), attacks become unarmed or natural attacks. A volumengeist can wield ghost touch weapons, but will not be summoned equipped with such weapon.

Special Attacks:

Corrupting Touch (Su) By passing part of its incorporeal body through a target as a standard action, the volumengeist inflicts a number of d4’s equal to its CR in damage. This damage is not negative energy but instead manifests as physical wounds and aches from supernatural aging (creatures immune to magical aging are immune to this attack). This attack bypasses all forms of damage reduction. A Fortitude save (DC 10 + ½ of volumengeist’s CR, rounded down) halves the damage inflicted.

Frightful Moan (Su) A volumengeist can emit a frightful moan as a standard action. All living creatures within a 30-foot radius must make a Will save (DC 10 + ½ of volumengeist’s CR, rounded down) or become panicked for 1d4 rounds. This is a sonic mind-altering fear effect. A creature that successfully saves against the moan cannot be affected by the same volumengeist’s moan for 24-hours. The master of the volumengeist is immune to this effect.

Abilities: Charisma +4; as an incorporeal undead creature, a volumengeist has no Strength or Constitution score.

Skills: Same as base creature except the creature receives a +4 racial bonus on Perception and Stealth checks. A volumengeist always treats Intimidate, Perception, and Stealth as class skills.

 

[Designed by Justin Andrew Mason!]

 

 

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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Thirst

Thirst     CR 9
XP 6,400
CE haunt (20ft. radius)
Caster Level 8th
Notice Perception DC 27 (to hear the faint echo of hoarse screams for water on the desert wind)
Hp 8; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 hour

Effect When entering the haunt’s area, three ghostly figures rise from the sand and try to enter three randomly determined party members; A DC 19 Will save pushes the ghostly apparitions back into the ground. On a failure, the apparition touches the subject and they must succeed on a Fortitude DC 19 save or die from instant and catastrophic dehydration. Even if the Fortitude save is successful, the subject takes 2d6 points of damage and gains the fatigued condition

Destruction 15 gallons of water must be poured out over the sandy area where the haunt manifests, then burial rites must be performed for all three apparitions by a cleric of good-aligned god. While the destruction ritual takes place the haunt does not manifest, but should any part of the ritual be performed the wrong way—a DC 20 Knowledge (nature) or Knowledge (religion) check—it manifests immediately.

Adventure Hook This haunt is all that remains of three adventurers who traveled into the desert with too little water in their rations. They all died of thirst, and the dried out husks of their bodies are now lying under a few feet of sand. 

 

aaw-free-5

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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3. All entries become property of Adventureaweek.com, LLP.

4. By submitting an entry you authorize the use of your name and likeness without additional compensation for promotion and advertising purposes in all media.

5. Adventureaweek.com, LLP reserves the right to withdraw or terminate this endeavor at any time without prior notice.

6. All decisions of Adventureaweek.com, LLP and their arbiters are final.

7. There is no compensation provided – any entries are given freely by their creators for use by Adventureaweek.com, LLP in perpetuity.

8. Your statblock must be properly formatted (compare to similar content on the AaWBlog for correct formatting).

 

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Sanguine Avarice

Cultus Sangineus full set

Sanguine Avarice     CR 9
XP 6,400
NE persistent haunt (one creature)
CasterLevel 11th
Notice Perception DC 35 (to notice the pulsing gemstones of the items are synchronized)
hp 40; Weakness tricked by hide from undead; Trigger special (see text); Reset special (see text)
Effect This haunt is triggered when a creature dons two of the three following items: amulet of the sundered heart, cloak of the dark servant or mask of the thirst. Once the second item is donned, the creature is overcome by two overwhelming desires. The first is to never willingly remove either item, even upon pain of death (no save). The second is to do everything within their power to recover the last item, betraying, cajoling, deceiving and killing any and every person and thing that prevents them from doing so unless they succeed a DC 18 Will save once a week (at midnight on the day of rest, or its nearest equivalent). These desires continue for as long as the creature continues to wear two of the enchanted items, though they receive a save to resist the urge to seek out the third item once a week. In addition to these effects, while under the effects of the haunt the afflicted creature takes damage from positive energy and heals from negative energy.

Destruction Destroy both of the magic items (amulet of the sundered heart, cloak of the dark servant or mask of the thirst), which may only be removed once the wearer is unconscious.

Adventure Hook There are numerous examples (here on the AaWBlog under the tag “Cultus Sanguineas”!) included with each magic item (as well as several haunts, sidequest saturday and statblock sundays accompanying them)! Expect more about the history of these fell pieces on Friday!

Special Possession and wearing two parts of this set grants the abilities of both pieces and the use of comprehend languages as a spell-like ability three times per day and cause fear as a spell-like ability once per day.

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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2. One entry per person at any one time. An entry must be your own work, not being published previously or considered by any other publisher, and it must original and not infringe upon copyrighted material.
3. All entries become property of Adventureaweek.com, LLP.
4. By submitting an entry you authorize the use of your name and likeness without additional compensation for promotion and advertising purposes in all media.
5. Adventureaweek.com, LLP reserves the right to withdraw or terminate this endeavor at any time without prior notice.
6. All decisions of Adventureaweek.com, LLP and their arbiters are final.
7. There is no compensation provided – any entries are given freely by their creators for use by Adventureaweek.com, LLP in perpetuity.
8. Your statblock must be properly formatted (compare to similar content on the AaWBlog for correct formatting).