Here are a couple more encounters from Nifol – the Ante-Hell.
3.56. Celdrien’s Tomb: The wizard Celdrien was laid to rest here in a fire pit (20 feet deep), his ashes mingling with the ashes of his favorite courtesans and most hated enemy. Secret catches here hidden in the walls of the black bricks that line the pit, each one containing one of his treasures:
– A large tome covered in duergar skin holding three spells: teleport, dimension door and passwall as well as demonic chants that, if repeated, summon 2d6 vrock to attack the reader. Until these vrocks are fought and defeated, the book drives its owner (and anyone who has learned a spell from it) to kill honest men and women they meet.
– An oil lamp of yellow glass. It is non-magical, but was made with pitchblende, causing the owner of such a lamp to pass a saving throw each month or lose one point of constitution from radiation exposure.
– A round +1 shield lacquered bright orange and emblazoned with a black demon head. The shield is -2 against the attacks of demons until the bearer has slain three different breeds of demon and nailed their hands into the wooden frame of the shield. After that, the shield is +3 against the attacks of demons.
– Silk hose of yellow with ribbons of pale lavender and brilliant white. They act as a ring of feather fall, but until they are dyed in the ichor of a demon they make their wearer completely passive (i.e. must save each round to fight, though they can defend themselves).
– A copper locket set with tiny sapphires. The locket provides a +2 bonus to save vs. magic, but also prevents natural healing until hairs from a bearded devil are placed inside the locket.
The pit is guarded by the spirit of Celedrien, who manifests as a raging fire elemental with a vaguely humanoid shape.
FIRE ELEMENTAL: HD 16 (81 hp); AC 2 ; Atk 1 strike (3d6); Move 12; Save 3; CL/XP 17/3400; Special: Ignite materials.
5.45. Dal-Berith, City of Goblins: Dal-Berith is a terrible city of goblins located near xxx. The city is constructed of large, crude stone blocks, with narrow, dark lanes in between them. Throughout the city there winds a covered lane with no apparent entrance – one can only enter it via secret doors hidden in buildings. This covered lane houses the true masters of the city-state, the Sages Who Dwell in Shadow. The sages are a cabal of black sorcerers who died and should have gone to Hell but for powerful magics enacted before they died. This gave them the power to resist the pull of Hell, but still left them trapped as shadows. They now lurk in this corridor, lit by ghostly candles, seeking new magic to free them from their curse.
Dal-Berith has a population of 5,000 goblins, hobgoblins, bugbears and orcs living in tense, angry clans always at one another’s throats. One might compare the city-state to Hell’s Kitchen. The presence of a powerful artifact in the hidden corridors of the shadow sages spreads contrariness and dissension, and each night a thousand petty arguments spreads into the streets as all-out war. The artifact looks like a simple necklace of chicken bones.
The walls of Dal-Berith are slimy and irregular. There are no gates – one can only enter through one of a dozen hidden silver mines in the hex. The walls are topped by about 100 gargoyles who guard the city. It is surrounded by foul-smelling streams and fields of mushrooms.
SHADOW SAGE: HD 6+6; AC 7 ; Atk 1 touch (1d4 + strength drain); Move 12; Save 14; CL/XP 9/1100; Special: Drain 1 point Str with hit, hit only by magic weapons, spells as 8th level magic-user.