25 Lawless City Adventure Seeds

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Picture Credit: Hugo Puzzuoli

A twist on a previous set, today’s Adventure Seeds take place in a Lawless City! Gone are the guards and the only law is don’t get caught!

As usual, I had a blast challenging myself with another setting. In many ways the seeds I came up with felt familiar; city settings give you a sense of comfort, after all. All adventures within do not need to involve combat so much as roleplay and mysteries. However, that changes a bit when you throw out the laws. They can and will involve combat and subterfuge where diplomacy and lending aid once were.

Plenty of assumptions this time, so buckle up:

  • The city is “ruled” by a Bandit King/Queen, who are simply the most powerful figure in the city that can keep their detractors at bay,
  • The only law is don’t get caught; if you do you’re at the mercy of those who also have no laws to follow,
  • Children are, more or less, a bit free of being victims. That’s not to say they’re not stolen from, but they are generally spared any grimmer crimes,
  • There are guards, most of which serve the Bandit King, but some who directly serve other lesser people of power,
  • And no one is turned away at the gate; all coin is welcome here.

And now here are the adventure seeds:

  1. An entire guild of assassins that was popular to hire has been found dead, and the only clue is the mark of a rival guild. Some see this is a challenge to the other guilds, but the guild whose mark was found maintains that they are being framed.
  2. A merchant beckons all who come near to do a job for him and steal back what is rightfully his. A rival merchant in town has possession of a darksteel crown, supposedly an heirloom of the first merchant’s lineage.
  3. The Bandit King has made it known that he is looking for a new right hand man after his fourth in three months faces public execution. The public are all clamoring for the role despite the bleak outlook of any who sign up, but why?
  4. A fight has broken out in the trade district that is causing lost sales and a lot of damage; two alchemists toss exploding vials at one another claiming the other stole their recipe for them.
  5. Many of the mages in the city keep their establishments within pocket dimensions that close when they leave, but lately even they have been subject to theft and they want to figure out who and how.
  6. Usually the gladiator pit is a good source of entertainment, but the last few combatants did not seem like they were in there by choice. While there are no laws in the city preventing it, there is already a steady stream of volunteers who want to test their mettle and the need for captives is nonexistent.
  7. A merchant has recently come to town with a caravan full of caged monsters. Many of the ones capable of speech threaten the merchant and any who come near repeatedly, although the merchant maintains that they are harmless.
  8. Two rival bars have been getting their patrons drunk and sending them to the other bar to fight and cause damage. This is causing so much damage to the property and people involved that the other patrons are wondering what could cause their rivalry to come to this.
  9. A band of mercenaries have returned to town after successfully slaying an exotic creature, and in tow have one of its enormous eggs. They want to sell it for profit, but some druids were overheard plotting to steal it.
  10. A new form of undead flesh golem was created by a necro-alchemist who wanted to achieve the best of living and undead parts in one creature. However, they did not account for the madness that would overcome the monster and allow them to break free of the necro-alchemists control.
  11. A noble of a nearby noble house was brought into the city in captivity and auctioned off. The bids keep going higher between his own house and that of a rival house that would see to his end.
  12. A thieves guild starts a local children’s chapter to ensure that they are better as adult thieves, but the children keep getting injured and locals are unsure of how to handle them when they get caught.
  13. A group of doppelgangers offer their services to kill and impersonate anyone for an extended period of time, and the only clue that they have been hired is that they themselves disappear for some time. They went missing last week.
  14. The local farmers withhold crops due to being looked down upon and pushed around by the other trades. They are threatening to poison their own crops and cattle if they are not taken seriously, and the loss of food source significantly hurts the city’s independence.
  15. A greater demon has taken up residence in the city, openly trading favors and power for souls. The soul can be that of the buyer, or the demon sells empty soul-flasks that can capture the souls of the freshly slain for trade.
  16. The catacombs have been freshly ransacked by amatuer graverobbers despite warnings from the more experienced, and now undead are slowly shambling out. The Bandit King’s guards can’t be bothered to go down and take a look or potentially stop the undead, and others are afraid to.
  17. Days after a new casino opened, its entire vault was robbed overnight without a trace. The owner is offering a reward for any clues about who might be behind the caper.
  18. A local madman has died and in his will left his estate to any who could claim it. What he forgot to mention is that his entire estate is booby-trapped, and many have come out severely injured or have not returned at all.
  19. A cult is openly recruiting for a future attack on lawful settlement as they need positive energy to feed to their god. When asked who this god is, they respond by showing a single, tiny newt that their leader keeps in her pocket.
  20. Graffiti is showing up around the city, and it supposedly points to hidden treasure buried throughout. After one of the clues turned out true, riots have broken out as others race to try deciphering and finding the rest of the treasure.
  21. A new drug has hit the streets that transforms the taker into a random object or animal. The more you take, the longer and stranger the transformation. As of right now, a man has been turned into a table for a week and people are desperate to find a cure!
  22. A coalition of guilds and thugs are seeking to take down the Bandit King and preach against him openly. Usually by now the Bandit King would have had them dispatched, but for some reason they have not been touched.
  23. A small group of people are campaigning to start a new holiday called “Giveback”, where the crime stops for a day and you literally give back something that you stole in the last year and promise not to steal it again. Others are less thrilled with the idea of them undoing their own work.
  24. A seller of cursed items keeps changing their face, but people want to catch them. Their goods are indistinguishable from non-cursed items, and even normal goods such as bags of flour have found a way to be cursed.
  25. A miasma has been slowly leaking out of the sewers and causing a plague-like sickness to overtake the town. Oddly, half-elves, half-orcs, and other half-races are not affected even when people with full blood on either side are.

As always, please let us know what type of adventure seeds you’d like to see next! Also shout out to “Yoda” Burke for the overall theme! You can expect to see some articles from him in the coming future!


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