25 Volcanic City Adventure Seeds

dwarven_caverns_concept_art_by_artofjokinen_d5mibsc-fullview
Picture Credit: artofjokinen

We’re here with even more Adventure Seeds for you! We continue with our theme of fantastical cities as we explore a city nestled inside a volcano! Is it me, or is it hot in here?

Per usual, had a lot of fun with this list, even if I was a bit slow to come up with some of the basic ideas. But soon they erupted and started flowing like lava down the side of a volcano! Of course, there’s a fire/lava/heat theme with the vast majority of these, but considering the limits of living in a volcano I hope you enjoy them all the same!

There were a few assumptions with this list per usual that could be altered as you see fit:

  • The city is inside the volcano,
  • The city is protected by some form of magic from the extreme heat- be it magic cast over the city, rings that everyone wears, a magic potion they take daily, etc,
  • The city is held suspended by chains or other means over the lava, meaning falling over and in is entirely possible,
  • and there only two entrances into the city at the top of the volcano and a single entrance in the side that is primarily used.

And now here are the adventure seeds:

  1. Below the city, magically protected boats cast fireproof nets into the lava to try and catch some of the small creatures that dwell within. Just yesterday a boat capsized dumping the crew into the lava while those on another vessel claimed they saw a large form rise out of the lava and push the boat over.
  2. The magic that keeps the city habitable has been slowly wearing down over time and the citizens are beginning to suffer from the extreme heat. The city is desperately seeking adventurers need to go to plane of fire and harvest some phoenix essence to restore it.
  3. Within the city is a blacksmith renowned for his magmaforged armor using a secret method. In his old age, he has begun a contest to find a suitable apprentice to teach his methods to.
  4. Small fire elementals keep appearing and causing mischief in the city, from burning food to scorching graffiti into the rocks. These have begun getting more serious with people suffering burns and other harm but the fire elementals disappear back into the lava before they can be reprimanded.
  5. The lava levels in the volcano have been lowering steadily over the past few months and some have been afraid that the goddess of fire is upset. The lava has gotten so low that the entrance to a mysterious cave below the lava is now visible.
  6. The chief export of the city, obsidian, has been booming lately as more uses for it have been found. Ogre thugs outside city who also want it are now blocking trade routes unless they get to buy it discounted and before anyone else.
  7. Due to the magic inherent to the volcano, a mage college specializing in teaching pyromancy has opened. Many aspiring spellcasters have come from all over, including some brutish types who are stirring up trouble with the natives.
  8. The three large chains that hold the main platform of the city up and stable are starting to show age and need some repairs. The problem is that if even a single chain is removed to be fixed the city will swing wildly and dump the people into the lava.
  9. The land outside of the volcanic city has been growing greener with time, and this actually has the druids of the magma upset. They are at odds with the other druids who are ushering in this growth and are planning on doing something drastic.
  10. Miners underneath the city accidentally sprung a leak into the lava that is quickly filling the tunnels. It must be rerouted to prevent further damages to the mine, but the only two places it can go are to the forests outside the city or to a grouping of small settlements at the base of the volcano.
  11. Natural and manufactured hot springs have become a go to destination for travelers who are seeking to relieve some stress. Some of those who indulged have begun noticing some side effects, from suddenly being able to cast firebolts to getting hypothermia in anything but the hottest of places.
  12. The clerics of the city maintain a magical lock on a portal to hell that would otherwise let in all sorts of demons and devils. They’ve now caught three magical rogues attempting to break in and undo the lock.
  13. A week ago the lava in the city began slowly rotating underneath the city. Now, it is a whirlpool of flame and sounds of otherworldly screaming can be heard at all hours throughout the city, unsettling the citizens.
  14. A rare fruit that only grows inside volcanoes and within the city is facing a shortage. Its main property of giving those who eat it temporary resistance to fire is a hot commodity as two warring nations vie for the supply to protect from flaming arrows and boulders employed by both sides.
  15. One of the noble families, the Firebloods, have a ritual to prove their bloodline by stepping into lava unharmed. The matriarch was challenged by her daughter to be an imposter in her mother’s place and reluctantly took the challenge, dying upon taking the challenge. Now the main question is, where is the real matriarch?
  16. As a means of protection, the treasury of the city is stored in a lava-proof vault that is magically submerged and hidden in the depths of the volcano. Upon retrieving it to deposit some money, it is discovered that it has been cleaned out entirely and all the of mages used to retrieve it have alibis.
  17. The volcano used to be surrounded by forests, but slowly over time the magic from the city inside the volcano destroyed them. Now a few treants known as the Barkcharred, tainted by the fire magic, roam the forest remains swearing vengeance on all who they come across.
  18. Days after an imprisoned necromancer swore revenge on the city, zombies filled with lava began a slow ascent up the walls of the volcano, spewing the molten rock at the guards who have tried to stop them. It is only a matter of hours before they reach the city.
  19. A gnomish tinkerer has debuted their newest invention: a crossbow-like vessel that spews a spray of lava out of a nozzle. The city’s armory has already placed a large order for these lavaspewers, but the design is still in a dangerous prototype stage likely to blow up.
  20. An embassy for the elementals of the fire plane resides within the city as a place for them to meet with mortals. A heated argument has ensued over the placement of a direct portal within the city with those in the city fearful of what horrors could step through.
  21. The city woke up to find a layer of ice forming over the lava as it darkens and cools down. The mages are frantically trying to find cause and cure for this change, especially as many in the volcano are also becoming ill as a result.
  22. A lava mill transfers lava down a shaft to a pool where it is sold to other cities for moats and other uses. Recently someone has been buying much of it anonymously and reports of lava attacks on small towns has caused the sell of lava to cease until the attacks stop.
  23. Gems known as firestones grow around lava and create a powder that can be used in potions to become immune to flames. The stores of powder are depleting and the seeds that grow into the gems must be harvested from the closed down depth of the mines under the volcano.
  24. The top of the volcano has been sealed for safety after wyverns have been seen attempting to nest there. Now they swoop down at the entrance, ridden by bugbears who demand they reopen the top and allow them to live there or they’ll attack the city.
  25. After days of rumbling, a gargantuan skeletal dragon has climbed out of the lava, breathing fire and speaking in the dragon tongue of taking over the world. He is immediately confused by both the fire resistance that protects the city that renders his breath harmless as well as his inability to fit around the city to get out.

As always, please let us know what type of adventure seeds you’d like to see next!


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