Thousands of years ago by the recollections of those elves still alive to recall the fable, a great time of tumult and chaos reigned across the universe. In that time the ancient citadel city of Umeshti was known as a bastion of civilization through the dark night of conflict and madness. Temples to the gods and towers of wizardry were erected, as were libraries and civic enterprises designed to preserve and protect the knowledge that the firstborn civilizations had worked so hard to gain. Art and science flourished, as did the first development of music and poetry. Travelers from far and wide, including those who traveled across the many planes considered Umeshti a home away from home, bringing esoteric relics and fantastic wealth with them.
As is often the case, this great civilization thrived and grew, until outside powers began to covet its success. Deities not worshipped within the city began to hurl curses upon its citizens, raining down deific plagues, or striking it divine storms and hordes of monstrous beasts. Despite this, the citizenry showed great inner strength and resolve, facing each new disaster with its own set of champions and brave protectors.
In the end, the sages are uncertain, but it is said that during a great war between the gods, a meteor was hurled at Umeshti, driving a shaft into the earth that stretched for hundreds of feet beneath the surface, completely obliterating all but the scantest trace of the powerful society which had once lived there.
All that remains now is a massive crater, high atop a mountain plateau, and the darkened shaft at the bottom of the crater, said to lead to treasures unimaginable and profound, if any survive to retrieve them.
In the millennia since the destruction of Umeshti, the gaping sink-hole at the center of the crater has been the source of much controversy and speculation. That the area surrounding the shaft left behind by the meteor is infested with all manner of monstrous beast and twisted goblinoid is well documented by those adventurers who have returned alive from expeditions to the crater.
The Crater of Umeshti is a good old fashioned dungeon crawl. Characters enter the Crater and delve into its depths. They find foes both great and small and face them in battles of blade or wit in order to relieve them of their treasure. They face puzzles, traps, and uncover secrets and mysteries which inevitably lead the characters to greater power and fortune. The Crater of Umeshti may be incorporated with its other parts into a fantastic campaign, leading characters from levels 2-5 to greater and greater strength and prestige.
The crater is designed with the intent of repeated forays into its depths using a nearby settlement of the CK’s choice or the characters design to re-stock, refurbish and re-supply. This settlement may be found in pre-made adventure sourcebook of which there are many in both D20 and Castles and Crusades various product lines such as Yggsburg by Gary Gygax, or this authors own city settings such as Dro Madras or that incorrigible chain of cross dimensional taverns known by most as “The Roadhouse” and referred to by a knowledgeable few as “Dirty’s”. See The Haunted Highlands by Troll Lord Games for more details on Dirty Bowbe’s Roadhouse and its environs.
For 4-6 characters of levels 3-5.
The difficulty and level needed to overcome new obstacles increases as the PCs delve deeper into the sinkhole in the center of the crater. The adventure requires nothing more than the Castles and Crusades Players Handbook, however Castle Keepers or the CK may find the Castles and Crusade: Monsters and Treasure book by Troll Lord Games to be helpful in running the adventure.
Begin the Adventure with: DB1 The Haunted Highland