Kassoon

Free Campaign Starter: Corrupted Nobility for D&D or RPGs

This adventure can be can be easily customized to a party of any size or level, or run as a level 2 adventure for 5 players. It can work as a small side adventure in an existing campaign, as a standalone one-shot, or the start of a new adventure. Use the links to the tools in their relevant section to customize the adventure to your party.

Corrupted Nobility

The party comes across a visiting dignitary on the road towards a city Oriff Torevir, Female Dwarf. Her caravan escort has been killed and she fears it was carried about by a noble in the city that opposes the trade deal she was coming to discuss. She fears she'll be killed and so asks the party to smuggle her into the city discreetly.

Oriff Torevir, Female Dwarf
Description: This woman is bedraggled and starved. She wears a faded coat and loose pants complete with top hat. She has black hair. She wears large thick round spectacles.
Personality: She is intelligent and cunning, but she will too often allow her rage to get the better of her. She will lose her cool and rely on brute force to carry the day. Voice: Farmer accent

The guards at the city gate will be running a checkpoint and questioning travelers for reasons they won't divulge. Grill the party about who they are, ask probing questions about the dwarf dignitary and let the party come up with some good lies (with appropriate skill checks) or some other way to smuggle the dwarf in. If they fail, the dwarf will be arrested for "further questioning" and never seen again.

The city is Didscourt and it has both a large variety of services and an oppressive government with heavy-handed guards. If the players visit The Merchant's Respite they can receive their quest, or you might have them be requested directly prior to their arrival.

Didscourt City

Didscourt is a large city, primarily made up of halflings and elves. The streets are full of people bustling about, as well as more guards than you're used to seeing. In the central square it looks like most of the stalls have been cleared out, and laborers are busy setting up for some sort of festival.

The party will learn that over the course of the last three weeks, several of the young women of the city have gone missing. The party is hired to look into the mysterious disappearances.

Questioning the victims' families they can learn a variety of facts about the women, but the one thing they have in common is their open disapproval of the aristocracy. Some other facts they can learn are: one had started dating a new person (they're innocent if investigated), one had been trying to learn magic, one was deeply religious, one worked at a popular store, one worked at the tavern, one often hiked through the wilderness, and any others you like.

If they do any further questioning, particularly about the women's anti-government views, if they haven't gotten the idea yet then it'll be suggested that they investigate the nobility and their offices.

The noble district sits on a hill overlooking the central square, with impressive estates and equally impressive fences enclosing their manicured gardens. Guard patrols are especially heavy up here, and of the few nobles that are out and about, most of them appear to be half-orcs.

You can use the House Map Generator for any of the offices or residences that you need. All these locations will be protected with guard patrols and traps that you can sprinkle in as needed. Here's some you can use, and the linked tools can be used to generate more as needed:

House Map 1

House Map 2

Guard Patrol

Falling Door Trap

They gradually find evidence that one noble has interfered to save the women from another noble that has been abducting political opponents and dissenters. It's implied they're being experimented on, and never seen again. 2 of the women have gone into exile far away from the city to start new lives, though one was captured by the noble in question before she could be rescued. If Oriff is alive, she can provide them with the final piece of conclusive evidence.

Depending on how many locations you want to visit you can present the evidence in as few or as many pieces as you like. For example: at the first location they could learn that one noble suspects the other of kidnapping political opponents and dissenters. At the second location they'll learn that Rolen Erenaeth (Male Half-Elf) has uncovered the plot and started kidnapping the victims first.

Rolen Erenaeth, Male Half-Elf
Description: He is wearing a long, pastel cloak. He has moderate length golden hair. His eyes are likewise green.
Personality: He acts crazy and hedonistic. Energy wise he seems alert and responsive. Voice: Sighs a lot, exhausted.

Upon confronting Rolen at the third location, he and Oriff (if alive) will confirm to the party that Foxilon Reedfellow (Male Halfling) has been kidnapping people to experiment on, and Rolen will explain how he's already helped a couple of the targets go into exile (including 2 of the women). Rolen will provide the party the suspected location of Foxilon's lab.

Secret Lab

When the party goes to confront Foxilon in his lab, it's too late. The woman is dead and he's fled through an escape door that leads out into a local festival.

Resolve this as a series of skill checks to determine if the noble is captured or gets away. Ask the players what they want to do, and determine an appropriate skill check and DC based on how difficult it will be to accomplish and how helpful it will be in apprehending the noble in a crowded festival (higher DC for less useful actions). The goal is to accrue 3 successes before 3 failures, if they succeed they capture him but if they fail he gets away.

The families of the missing women are in attendance at the festival and can also help find the noble if the PCs come across them and explain the situation, accruing a success.

If the players choose to reveal the truth to the populace it causes riots. If they choose to keep it a secret the noble will be quietly arrested (if captured) and replaced. The players will be given a bonus from the ruler for their discretion if they keep it a secret.

For completing the quest the families will reward the party with 100 gp each, and the ruler will give them an extra 100 gp if they keep the secret.

Need more help with your campaign? Check out all the other tools, generators, and articles: kassoon.com/dnd/

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