Archive For "Game Design"

Here Be Monsters 2: Hell Breaks Loose

Always on the look-out for new gaming contests, my brother and I recently stumbled across Here Be Monsters 2: Hell Breaks Loose! HBM2 is a monster building contest which uses the Pathfinder RPG rule-set: something Matt and I are very well acquainted with.


This year’s theme required us to design an evil monster spawned from the BOWELS OF HELL. Well, not quite that specific. But definitely something devilish! We decided to blend together constructs, devils, and haunts into something entirely new: the Accursed Sentinel! Created by foul devil lords, these iron monstrosities are powered by the souls of a fallen priests. Spoooooky stuff!

Feel free to use this monster for your own, non-commercial purposes. I’ll be following the contests as the judging moves along, and likely be writing a post about the winners when they’re revealed on March 3rd.

Accursed Sentinel

An iron giant shambles towards you, two long rusted arms dragging at its side. A crystal bauble lies in the center of the construct: subtle gray mist swirling within.

Accursed Sentinel CR 7
XP 3,200
LE Large construct (devil)
Init +0; Senses darkvision 60ft., low-light vision; Perception +3


AC 20, touch 9, flat-footed 20 (+11 natural, -1 size)
hp 79 (9d10+30)
Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +6
DR 5/adamantine or good; Immune construct traits, fire; Resist acid 10, cold 10
Weaknesses soul forged


Speed 20 ft.
Melee 2 slams +13 (2d6+5)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 10 ft.
Special Attacks blessing’s blight, flames of the fallen


Str 21, Dex 10, Con -, Int -, Wis 16, Cha 1
Base Atk +9; CMB +15; CMD 25
SQ immunity to magic


Environment any (hell)
Organization solitary or pair
Treasure incidental


Blessing’s Blight (3/day) (Su)
As a swift action, an accursed sentinel may imbue its attacks with a special power. If one of its slam attacks hits a creature within the next minute, that creature is the subject of a targeted dispel magic using the accursed sentinel’s hit dice as the caster level. However, this ability only affects spells with the good descriptor. Once the strike is made, the power dissipates, even if the dispel attempt is unsuccessful.

Flames of the Fallen (3/day, DC 17) (Su)
Three times per day, the accursed sentinel may spew forth a 15ft cone of black flames as a standard action. Any creature in the area of the flames takes 4d6 points of damage, with a DC 17 reflex save for half.

Half the damage is fire damage, but the other half results directly from unholy power and is therefore not subject to being reduced by resistance to fire-based attacks.

Flammable materials burn if the flames touch them. A character can extinguish burning items as a full-round action.

Immunity to Magic (Ex)
An accursed sentinel is immune to any spell or spell-like ability that allows spell resistance. In addition, certain spells and effects function differently against the creature as noted under Soul Forged.

Soul Forged (Ex)
Encased in a crystal bauble at the center of an accursed sentinel is a soul that once belonged to a good-aligned cleric. Although corrupted through devilish magics, the soul can be redeemed and released.

Positive energy applied to the soul at the heart of the accursed sentinel (via channeled energy, cure spells, and the like) can purify it. An accursed sentinel gains a Will save as normal to lessen the damage done by such effects, and attacks that require a successful attack roll to work must strike AC 20 in order to target the soul itself and not the inanimate parts of the construct.

Once the soul has received 31 hit points of positive energy damage, its container shatters and erupts in a fountain of searing light: releasing the entrapped soul. When this occurs, the accursed sentinel is immediately reduced to 0 HP, gains the staggered condition, and may no longer use its Blessing’s Blight or Flames of the Fallen special attacks.


Accursed sentinels are mindless constructs crafted by particularly spiteful devil lords. Diabolical machinations entrap and confine the souls of good-aligned priests, twisting their potent holy energies and channeling them into a mammoth iron shell.

Often used for menial labour (much to the delight of their masters), accursed sentinels are also valued as guardians. Their mindless patience and boundless stamina make them effective protectors, and their black flames allow them to “cleanse” areas of unwanted visitors.

A accursed sentinel is approximately 7 feet tall, roughly humanoid in shape, and weighs nearly a ton. Although each construct varies in exact form, they are almost uniformly made from bands of jagged and rusted iron. In the center of every accursed sentinel is a small crystal bauble which houses the ensnared soul of a fallen priest.

One Page Dungeon Contest 2015: Vesna’s Refuge

The 2015 iteration of the One Page Dungeon Contest is nearing its deadline, and Matt and I have just put the finishing touches our submission! Impressed by the maps and layouts of last year’s entries, we were inspired to create something with a bit more of a visual “punch” to it. The fruits of our labour is Vesna’s Refuge, a system neutral island adventure about evil magics, blighted forests, and deadly monsters. You can download the PDF version, or view a PNG copy below:


The judges will be, well, judging the entries over the coming weeks and the winners will be revealed in a month or so. As always, there were a ton of great dungeons this year, and I highly recommend you browse through them on this year’s contest page.

Vesna’s Refuge is 100% free to use and copy for non-commercial purposes, and is shared under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 license. If you do decide to run it, let me know how it goes. I’d love to get feedback on the adventure!

One Page Dungeon Contest 2014: Galiron’s Gauntlet

The 2014 iteration of the One Page Dungeon contest has now closed! The judges will pour over the entries over the coming weeks, before selecting winners for multiple (and somewhat arbitrary) categories. There were a lot of great entries this year, all of which can be seen on this year’s contest page.

RS and finally took the plunge this year and submitted a dungeon entitled Galiron’s Gauntlet! It’s a pretty straight-forward one page dungeon, which offers up a handful of fun scenarios in an easy-to-play format. You can download the PDF version of the dungeon RIGHT HERE, or you can view a JPEG version below:


This dungeon is 100% free to use and copy for non-commercial purposes. If you do decide to run it, let me know how it goes. I’d love to get feedback on the adventure!