Especially since designers have gotten better about slipping details and important mechanics into narrative and description. The Olman are a Mesoamerican analogue society drawing heavily from the Aztecs but also there’s some Mayan and Incan iconography sprinkled throughout. If this were a video game, the door would have some kind of prompt before you opened it to make sure that the players were primed for what comes next. It’s what makes the Dungeon feel less like a random collection of rooms and more like an actual place. Cookies enable you to enjoy certain features, social sharing functionality, and tailor message and display ads to your interests on our site and others. Rooms like this are an important part of the pace of the game too–this is a place where players can rest. I noticed at the end that they are hinting at a 4e revision of Isle of Dread. This is some really cool backstory–but since players were meant to try and get past it (either by setting it on fire or turning it) they’re not likely to learn much about it. Thatâs the central premise of the dungeon, but thereâs a lot packed into that sentence. Either of these questions might help you figure out how best to craft the creatures and encounters in the dungeon. 7.5k members in the AdventurersLeague community. Go AD FREE today. The best way Iâve found to handle any tamoacha that they run across is to hit them with a permanent option from the Bestow Curse spell until they get around to dealing with it. The adventure originally began with players escaping pursuit and becoming lost in the jungle and then falling into the ruins swallowed by darkness. That’s one of the things I’m most interested to see in Tales from the Yawning Portal. So try and keep things like this in mind when you’re building your own dungeons. Once they claim the potion in the bottle, the couatl is freed from its imprisonment–that story from the door is complete. In fact, before the players have even entered the dungeon, you’re presented with some narrative complications in the form of Unsafe Stonework (the shrine is old and decayed, and there’s a chance that explosive spells will cause a ceiling collapse) and a poisonous gas which fills the lower levels of the room. I’ll be digging through more of these as the weeks go on. For instance, players aren’t really rewarded for finding loot–rather they’re rewarded for making what the designers felt the “correct” decisions were. As you move into the room, your steps send motes of dust and ash swirling into the air, and these clouds form into shapes. As a temple to the dead, presumably the dead (or those to be sacrificed) were brought here. This room is all narrative component–there’s no treasure or trap here. And people wonder why Adventurers are thought of as Murder Hobos. At the end of each uninterrupted hour of immersion, roll a d6. Same with the puzzle/traps portion. Almost gone. The bad guy is named Tloques-Popolocas, which is totally what I'm changing my name to. Cleverness and solving the puzzles were awarded, but there were so many gotcha moments included in the game that it was entirely reasonable to take some hits for acting like a normal person with common sense. Also I feel it’s worth mentioning that just because we’re talking about narrative components specifically, it doesn’t mean we will be leaving off combat or other mechanics–a lot of times, a combat encounter can serve as a narrative component, especially in this dungeon. Are they functional, have they fallen out of use? How is this dungeon used? Lost Tamoachan: The Hidden Shrine of Lubaatum by Harold Johnson & Jeff Leason C1 Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan by Harold Johnson & Jeff Leason There are three distinct versions of this module. But 5th Edition is all about finding a story–or at least adding a little bit more detail to the world. Doing so means keeping on the move, and not getting distracted hunting for treasure or fighting monsters. The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is one of the greatest examples of dungeon design with character…. Despite this, for the 1979-1981 AD&D modules, only three pregenerated characters were given for tournament play. I fretted that the Shine might turn into a tiresome slog, but play proved me wrong. That said, in the hands of a well-prepared and experienced referee, I have little doubt that this module is an excellent one. shipping: + C $4.26 shipping. But for now, let’s talk about how this is using narrative elements to try and entice players to action. Greyhawkery: Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan 4E. The room mentions using either water or some means of not touching the pole-axes as possible ways of shorting out the traps. All feature deadly traps and creatures still bound to the dead empire. And that’s just the stuff on that particular tier, nevermind that there’s a whole other tier of the dungeon they’ll have had to go through first. So with that in mind, let’s dive into the rich narrative tapestries that you can find in the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan…. Here There Be Spoilers A DMâs Guide to the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan was originally published back in 1980, as an adventure for the first edition of D&D. About The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan specifically. The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is one such temple. There are two empty alcoves to the north and south. After all there are times the module basically punishes characters for thinking that something looks cool and trying to learn more about it. She throws up her hands in despair, rushes into one of the alcoves, and disappears. Also more plot in general? Unfortunately this means we’ll skip past my favorite part of the dungeon (an encounter with a giant talking hermit crab and his giant crayfish buddy), but there’s still plenty to delve through. The Hidden Shrine remains one of their derelict structures that still holds "â¦great treasures and the legendary magic of the Olman. Both of the rooms we’ve talked about are here to reinforce the idea that by being in this shrine, the players are somehow in “the land of the dead.” Even if just symbolically. Many of the rooms are decorated with figures and statues and murals that depict scenes from the culture. It was a blast â and brutal. Despite all that though, the module is still fantastic. But players who find it encounter an ornate mirror at the end of a hallway, next to a door. Now you might be thinking, oh hey, this room is guarded by a pretty serious trap–it must be to protect something, right? There are seven all in all, with everything from 3rd Edition favorites to legends like the Tomb of Horrors. Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is a Dungeons & dragons roleplaying game adventure designed as an homage to the classic 1980 adventure. You can’t really fault a module that presents a riddle that requires something of each member of a (pregenerated) party. Is it the original inhabitants? On a 6, a floppy, 6-inch-long magical fish appears on the end of the hook. That story about the journey to find truth and light, but ending with imprisonment in the underworld might get the players thinking about the death mask on the wall or the items on the shelf. Tucked into each nook where the arms of the cross come together is a low shelf on which are placed small offerings: silver bracelets, earrings, neck collars, anklets, piles of coral beads, and silver and jade statuettes. It’s nice to give the players a little bit of a break. Or walk through the chapel of Kukulkan where they encounter a hidden Couatl that charges them with a riddle and has them pass a trial that rewards successful characters with magic items and the services of a shadowy Death Servant, which sounds creepy, but is basically an extra life. This week, we exploreÂ a Legendary Hidden Temple…, WithÂ Tales from the Yawning PortalÂ only a few weeks away from a general release, I thought it would be fun to take a look back through the original modules that it comprises. Tamoachan is located in the savage lands south of the Olman islands, southeast of the Holds of the Sea Princes. The hidden shrine of tamoachan was one of the few add â¦ Little details like this will really help bring out your dungeon’s “life” in your world. There are more traps and puzzles than combat encounters in this module–if you have players who prefer solving puzzles to slinging swords, this module will suit them nicely. One such adventure is the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan, an adventure written for the 1979 Origins Game Exposition as a tournament game for TSRâs original Dungeons and Dragons. The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan, part 2. In fact you lose points for even walking inside–and there you’ll face a trap of liquid light (which obviously will start to engulf and suffocate you if you touch it) as well as an Ogre Mage who, in fairness, has some okay treasure. Later it was re-written for other editions, with the adventure most recently appearing in the 5th edition book, Tales â¦ The southern staircase is luminescent, appearing to change colors in the light. Originally designed for tournament play using the three pregenerated PCs in the back of the adventure, Tamoachan relies mightily on these specific tournament PCs carefully managing their light sources. There are some interesting traps and vignettes, but more than anything else, what makes this dungeon stand out is the character to it. Lots of spoilers below but itâs not a « standard » playthrough of this classic module by any margin. Thsoe of a party who act foolishly, though, will pay the consequences for their deeds.”. Some of the traps include cursed items, firebombs, and triggered statues. The player charactersexplore a stepped pyramiddeep in the heart of a tropical jungleâthe Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan. The couatl then rewards the players with some magic items and the use of its spells to aid them before returning to its home. There’s a particular arc of action that rises and falls and rises again–and atmospheric moments like this one are needed to break up the routine. Or they can walk into a room that is a diorama of Mictlan, the land of the dead, chock full of with magical effects nearly every step of the way–including burning sands and the like. H4 The Throne of Bloodstone - Module Dungeons & Dragons . Actually the module doesn’t care about a lot of things. In the center of the door is carved an eagle killing a serpent. Well. The stairs to the east, across the room, are partly obscured by shadow. Taking up the middle of the chamber is a cross-shaped dais with sets of stairs leading up to it along each of the four ends. On small ledges in each corner of the room are pieces of what appear to be broken pottery. The intended solution is for someone to try and touch some thieves’ tools to the crystal walls, but alternate solutions might include a wizard and a wand, or some other interpretation of clever person and tool. Help making a plot hook for Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan after Sunless Citadel? In the last post I gave a quick summary of how the party found the ancient city of Lost Tamoachan. This tiny silver fishhook has a little gold feather attached to it. Hooks: Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan. They use the wasp â¦ Almost gone . It’s definitely worth checking out if you can get your hands on a copy–if not, then you’ll have to wait and see what shape it takes once the Yawning Portal opens up…, Finally, a dungeon where it’s appropriate to encounter Red Jaguars, Blue Barracudas, Green Monkeys, Orange Iguanas, Purple Parrots, and Silver Snakes…. And the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is a masterclass in narrative components. Who lives here now? Lots of spoilers below but itâs not a « standard » playthrough of this classic module by any margin. Which is a shame, because it has a lot of history to it. The narrative component is what shows how the dungeon was used, and how it fits into the larger world as a whole. Across the room, opposite where you entered, is another set of double doors. It is a magical diorama that depicts the land of the dead but also inflicts various effects on players as they walk through it. Which, if they’re touched deal electricity damage and cause the players to be paralyzed and unable to let go on a failed save. By this point in the dungeon, assuming that they’ve been going through and hitting everything, they’ve been shot with crossbows, afflicted by poisonous gas, struck by liquid fire, attacked by a weretiger, attacked by an animated ball, had to deal with a Raiders of the Lost Ark style rolling boulder, and been assailed by 13 giant fire beetles. There are numerous sections where the goal is figuring out how to move forward, rather than defeating some guardianÂ And hilariously, there are many places where the whole purpose of the rooms seems to exist to waste the time and energy of the players. Run it as a race to escape and enjoy the Shrineâs wealth of flavor and detail. Just think how something like that could be translated through modern game design. Dungeon Master for Dummies includes The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan in its list of the ten best classic adventures, noting the playersâ destination as a âMayan-style temple full of surprising traps and devious tricks. Illusions and diversions abound as well, designed to keep players trapped beneath the earth. The adventure originally began with players escaping pursuit and becoming lost in the jungle and then falling into the ruins, swallowed by darkness. Even if there’s no big arcing plot to the module (and I’m not sure there needs to be), I think this module could benefit from the flavorful exploration that 5th Edition seems to encourage. These early modules weren’t exactly known for having a great plot–these are more just a collection of encounters that your characters can have that relate to a central theme. That this module has been adapted for 5th Edition is all narrative component–there ’ talk! 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