Hooked on Adventure — Cultivating Chaos

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Hello! We are introducing a new series here on the website. Nerdarchist Ted takes inspiration from our 3D printed terrain and miniatures to create encounters for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons you can drop right into your game. For his first foray into this territory Ted takes a closer look at our Rural Chicken Coop and designs a fun low level 5E D&D encounter. It’s not uncommon for starting adventurers to take on work clearing out giant spiders or rescuing kidnapped townsfolk from goblins. For this encounter Ted spices things up with Abyssal forces terrorizing a rural homestead and sowing chaos. To enhance the encounter we used Dungeonfog, an online map maker and authoring tool designed for Game Masters, to create a map image for the Rural Chicken Coop. Check out Dungeonfog and use the promo code NERDARCHY to get 10% discount on your first annual and annual-CL (Commercial-License) order here.

low level adventure 5E D&D abyssal chicken
This map and assets were created using Dungeonfog. Click on the image to add this Rural Chicken Coop map to your own Dungeonfog collection. [Map created by Nerditor Doug]

Abyssal Chicken Coop 5E D&D encounter

Introduction

Low level 5E D&D games are fun and can be challenging if rolls go poorly.  An orc warrior that lands a critical hit can not only fell a 1st level character, but if the dice go well it can easily land the character dead on the ground. So at times I like to use weaklings and add a bit of mystery to the game. Let the combat be fun and let the characters mow down the monsters like the bad asses they want to be. The challenge is finding the answer to the problem so the encounter is over and everyone can go on their merry way.

Environment

This is a farm adventure and for this one the the mystery is about the chicken coop.

Level

2 — Hard

This is a low level adventure designed for four 2nd level characters. If you wanted to run this one at higher levels use more monsters and maybe a higher level villain, but do as you like. All demons are chaotic evil and apt to cause trouble for no other reason than causing pain and misery.

Monsters

Abyssal Chicken (2) — found in Baldur’s Gate: Descent into Avernus

Quasit — found in the 5E D&D Monster Manual

Treasure

Chicken farmer Jethras probably does not have much but the quasit leaves behind a silver ring set with a ruby worth 75 gp. Does this lead to another story or was it just the party’s lucky day in finding the ring? This could be a nice tie in if any character is a Fiend warlock or considering making such a deal with an Otherworldly Patron.

Description

An abyssal chicken as seen in the fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons Baldur’s Gate: Descent into Avernus. [Image courtesy Wizards of the Coast]
Farmer Jethras is just not having a good season. If it is not one thing it is another. He and his son Milo have been attacked by the chickens in the coop every time they try to go in and collect eggs. On top of this some of the more aggressive ones look off and slightly unnerving.

The real story is a quasit is running around invisible. Spex, the quasit, has learned a fun little ritual it has been using every night when the chickens are sleeping. Spex has been instilling Abyssal energy into the chickens. They are being corrupted and changed into abyssal chickens. Should the characters enter the coop the abyssal chickens will attack. Using 2-3 aggressive abyssal chickens should be fine but be careful — things could go poorly if you have them all attack a single character when the rest are not committed. If need be hold back so they can come in waves.

Spex is not likely to reveal itself unless a character succeeds on a DC 12 Intelligence (Investigation) or Wisdom (Perception or Survival) check and sees the footprints in the dirt, prompting them to either seek out or call out Spex. The quasit can be persuaded to leave but it pays careful attention to the words any character chooses to use. Spex will come back after they leave, go to another farm or seek trouble elsewhere if a character succeeds on a DC 12 Charisma (Persuasion) check. Spex will not stop his antics altogether as he fears its master much more than anything the players will do to him.

Complications

If the characters kill the aggressive abyssal chickens and the quasit, other than farmer Jethras being out a handful of chickens there’s no real issue unless the quasit was only the beginning of trouble on the farm. That is up to you.

If Spex is allowed to live and forced away from the Rural Chicken Coop it will cause trouble elsewhere. Likely Spex finds its way back to the party to cause them havoc just for spoiling its fun. Should the character opt to try and save the chickens a successful DC 15 Intelligence (Arcana) check shows their form has changed but it can be changed back. A character who succeeds on a DC 12 Intelligence (Religion) check knows applying holy water to the abyssal chickens reverts all changed chickens to their normal form. However, holy water is not cheap. Are the chickens worth it? A bless spell can be used instead of the holy water as part of the ritual.

I hope this provides a fun little 5E D&D adventure or campaign starter. Let me know if you run it and how it goes. Check out our Rural Chicken Coop and explore other 3D terrain and miniatures here. Use the promo code HOOKED for 10% off your entire order. We had a lot of fun creating this Hooked on Adventure encounter and we’ll keep the series going, so keep an eye out for more of these.

Until next time, stay nerdy!

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Follow Ted Adams:
The nerd is strong in this one. I received my bachelors degree in communication with a specialization in Radio/TV/Film. I have been a table op role player for about 20 years 17 of which with the current group. I have played several itterations of D&D, Mutants and Masterminds 2nd and 3rd editions, Star wars RPG, Shadowrun and World of Darkness. I am an avid fan of books and follow a few authors reading all they write. Favorite author is Jim Butcher I have been an on/off larper for around 15 years even doing a stretch of running my own for a while. I have played a number of Miniature games including Warhammer 40K, Warhammer Fantasy, Heroscape, Mage Knight, Dreamblade and D&D Miniatures. I have practiced with the art of the German long sword with an ARMA group for over 7 years studying the German long sword, sword and buckler, dagger, axe and polearm. By no strecth of the imagination am I an expert but good enough to last longer than the average person if the Zombie apocalypse ever happens. I am an avid fan of board games and dice games with my current favorite being Quarrios.

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