With the Crown of the Heartlands campaign returning to Kingsbridge, perhaps it is time to see Kingsbridge for all it has to offer:
Inside the Temple of Tamberlain the party found the remaining villagers slaughtered, over their corpses a Cleric of Morrigan loomed, having enthralled the villagers to attack the bandits and to attempt to break through the holy seals warding the lower levels of the Temple: The Hall of Trials. The party made quick work for the evil cleric and, with the blessing of a surviving priestess of the Allfather, entered the hall of trials.
The hall of trials map is a bit ambiguous, and it is intended to be. Here is how I used it:
The Chamber of Choice: Here each party member was given a moral delimma by a spirit on the dais in the center of the room (such as having to choose between two loved ones or between family and friends on the battlefield). Based on their choices, they would have one of the four doors open taking them to the Corridor of Consequences. Depending on how “just” their choice was reasoned, the corridor would either have traps or nothing. Then they would find themselves back in the Chamber of Choice for the next player’s attempt. For each player, I had two possible outcomes customized from their backstories and depending on who they failed that person would eventually appear in the Gallery of Grace as an enemy. More on that in a bit.
The Corridor of Consequence: Inside I had pendulum scythes, wall spikes, and swinging censers with knockout gas. These traps will be posted over time as part of Trap Tuesday (so keep an eye on the site).
In the Vault of Visions I had the players encounter some additional traps, this time a set of ghost-fire walls and a tesla orb, and then later had them make a choice concerning the campaign I’m running with the final two doors. This choice was a big deal in my game (essentially deciding if a supporting character would be good or evil forevermore). After this they pass through the door of their choice and into the Gallery of Grace.
Here the spirit from the Chamber of Choice reappeared and told the players “In the words of the allfather, there are no good choices, no bad choices, only what we choose to do and the consequences that follow.” Then the avatar revealed the people the party chose to save in their decision and each granted the party a specific buff, and then revealed those they failed across the gallery for a long battle.
After this they entered the Altar chamber and accomplished their goal of passing through the Hall of Trials.
I made a lot of traps, art assets, and new tools on this map. I’m excited to use them again!
The investigation of Eaton Village continues with the climax: the Temple of Tamberlain, the Allfather. This compassionate deity is revered around the world and such temples are common to train clerics in their duties of healing and offering guidance. However, here the party encountered Lamar, the Bandit Baron ravaging the village of Eaton, as he chained up the door to the temple with the parishioners inside. Ater a brief battle and a stroll around the gardens, the party entered the temple…
I really, really liked how this one came out.
The Village of Eaton has seen better days, but it is nevertheless a generally pleasant place. With old stone buildings, warm fireplaces, and enough nooks and crannies to hide a secret of two… Eaton Village is a great setting that a lot of different plots can be placed within.
These are maps two and three of the Eaton Village set. How I played this was a group of bandits had taken over the village and were slaughtering the villagers… but perhaps there was more to this story! I went all in on making my own furniture on these maps, and it came out fairly well. The 3d mesh on the village wasn’t quite right yet, but by time I worked on the orchard I figured out how to do it best.
Every now and then you need a good multi-level “stormin’ the castle” encounter map. Eaton Village Gatehouse is a pretty solid way to do one of these without being overly complicated. Made up of four maps, you have the wall itself, the lower level of the gatehouse, and the upper level of the gatehouse. On this map I left the rooms inside mostly empty. In my playthrough of this a group of bandits held the wall, with their commander above the second floor grate ready to pour down acid into the corridor below. Players could climb the vines, use spells to fly, or try and force their way through the main portcullis.
Inside the Chester Ridge Ruins is more than the flame arena! Fire and shadow haunts these halls!
First we have the platform room. This was intended to be one large, fast paced encounter with sniper-like mages hidden in bubble-like force fields that were 3×3 squares. Players couldn’t hit them at a distance, but the mages could throw fire damage at them from anywhere on the map. Players were first encouraged to run for the ruin halls to the north to find a way to lower the shields and then, once they had done so, returned to this map to finish off the snipers that harried them.
Inside one of the halls on the north is the Tablet room (the other leads up to the top platform of the Chester Ridge Exterior maze map). Here a magic tablet held runes of strange and mysterious power (in my campaign, this was a riddle on how to stop the Avatar of Morrigan, Goddess of Storms, from destroying their town in a hurricane). As with the previous maps, the fire floor was a hazard so players had to get through it to find their answers.
Finally, we have the original map for the interior of the ruins. It’s not what I was going for after planning, but someone might be able to use it for something:
The interior of the Chester Ridge Ruins is filled with fire, shadow, and sinister enemies!
It is also filled with this initial fire arena:
To make this work in roll20, I first made the “tame” map the background for the map on the map layer, then made a rollable table with every other form of the map. Once it was set up, I moved the rollable table “to back” to hide it, and once the battle started moved the tame layer to back and every round would randomize the table to determine what floor burn would be in effect. In the center of the platform I had a boss with high health that shot very powerful beams of fire in any two cardinal directions each round, making moving on an off the platforms essential for player survival.
Deep in the Fallowen Forest are the Chester Ridge Ruins, an ancient holy site for the Chimi people (now long since passed beyond memory). In Roll20 I set player’s vision to be defined by the lighting layer, along with preventing them from moving tokens through the light barriers, making the maze an actual challenge. Throwing in a lot of distractions (traps, landmine fields, enemies, and phantom skulls falling from the mists above) made sure that they got turned around quite a bit.
We also had a few encounters on the outskirts of the ruins:
And finally, the party’s camp map, presumably connecting back to the other Chester Ridge and Fallowen Forest maps through that road.
Fallowen Forest, just north of the Chester Ridge Highway, had the party’s wagon break an axle and while our repair-person fixed it they had to gather firewood from the local woods, find various NPCs that wandered off from the camp, and deal with a very creepy child-like forest spirit and it’s Huorn and Treant allies.
In the end they were attacked by a gargantuan Wumpus, these things happen.
Here we have Chester Ridge Highway, a new mapset. In my campaign I ran this as a chase scene, with wolf-like enemies harrying a coach along the road with the players escorting it and protecting it. They had to remove downed trees, and eventually take out a huge knight-like creature guarding the bridge. Once they started crossing the bridge, the planks (shown below) would start creaking and cracking, eventually breaking and requiring the party to jump or climb across.
In Roll20 I made a rollable table out of the items below, and then would choose “random” from the best as players crossed. This would lead to potentially unknown issues with the safety of the bridge. It turned out to be a really fun encounter and my players requested more maps like this one in the future. Escort missions really lead to good immersion.
On the technical side of things, this map is one of the most detailed I’ve made and my new style for trees requires actually painting each tree rather than using a texture to carry depth. The puddles in the road… I’m really happy with the puddles and mud. Little things, but they came out great!
Here we have an alternative basement to the Watchtower that I used for my final battle. In this, the 12 points on the ring had orbs that could be twisted to teleport layers to a 1d13 points (the twelve other orbs or the center) or held to cause a beam of light to strike the boss at the center of the room. If players had two opposite beams of lighting shining on the boss, her shield preventing damage went down and other players could hit her. Complicating this were 12 shades of the boss on the 12 clock-points jutting out towards the island, dealing minor damage and dying in one successful hit, but regenerating every time the boss lost her shield. After three hits, the orbs allowing the beams to lower the shields overheated and players would have to realign.
I added stairs in roll 20 to the room, along with chests and furniture, but left these blank on the map so other campaigns could use it aside from the watchtower. Any campaign with underground environments might find a use for this map!
As a special bonus for my 100th map, we have the Old Watchtower. This massive map has 8 levels and is perfect for any number of campaigns (from king-of-the-hill style defense to sneaking in and investigating the secrets of the castle… or both!). Featured above is a gif of how the map layers from top down. Below are the source maps.
Map #99. First attempt to make my own furniture, doorway arches, and universal lighting before it went into Roll20. I’m really happy with how this came out.
Beneath the Town Hall is a series of tombs of the mayors of ancient past…
Farmer Mawson’s eldrich experiments opened up a portal into the outer plane of memory, where the party encounters images of the past and malignant outsiders.
Farmer Mawson lost a horse and found a primer on necromancy. Horrible, horrible madness ensued.