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Thursday, 8 September 2016

Classic Rant: Rumors and Adventure-Seeds for Arrows of Indra

The following table, inspired by those found in many classic modules, details an example of rumours that might be heard in any large city in the Arrows of Indra setting; though I had it in mind for the area around Upaplavya, in the Matsya kingdom (a good relatively peaceful minor kingdom in which to start a campaign). Any of these rumours can serve as a potential adventure seed.

D20 Rumour/Adventure Seed
1 Krishna is raising a band of all sorts of warriors, holy men and adventurers to conquer Mathura and liberate it from his wicked uncle, Kansa. He gives no pay but promises great reward to those who join him. (T)

2 Four days south-west of Viratapuri, in the Desert of Thar, there can be found the ruined palace of a mighty Siddhi, his treasury of magic items was never found (Partly true- there is a ruin in that location but it is of a minor palace, now occupied by Rakshasa bandits)

3 The hills around the road into Kunti Kingdom are being haunted by great numbers of Aleya ghosts (partly true; there’s only a single Aleya in the area)

4 The armies of the Maghadan Empire are marching to invade the Matsya kingdom (false- for now)

5 Lord Baladeva of Tusari (a town one day’s ride from Upaplavya) is holding a great wedding banquet for his son, where there will be contests of archery, hunting, charioteering, and dueling, with prizes for the best warriors. (true)

6 The friendlier tribes of Bhil Barbarians south of Matsya have reported attacks from a pack of Sharabha, well outside of their typical terrain. They don’t know how the Sharabha got there, but suspect a nearby hostile tribe (true)

7 A young boy in the village of Kanharka has been blessed by Varuna, who sent a Water Deva to save him from an attack by lions. (partly true: the boy’s father made up the story as a scam, but now the boy’s life is in danger from unholy enemies of Varuna)

8 The powerful Rajpal Kichaka, commander of King Virata’s armies, is raising a great force to defend the kingdom against the threat of the Maghadan Empire (false)

9 A warband of Gandharvas from the Dwaita Jungle have come out of there to slay all of the inhabitants of a bordering village for some villagers’ trespass on their lands (false)

10 In a lake near Lampuwa village, a trio of Apsara celestial maidens have been seen; they are seeking a great hero of incredible beauty to take as a husband (partly true: they are in fact seeking Holy-aligned heroes to slay a dangerous Unholy Witch)

11 A wealthy Rakshasa siddhi has arrived from Mathura; he’s seeking unscrupulous men to form a raiding party to enter the Gandharva territory deep in the Dwaita jungle, to steal magic from them. (true)

12 Prince Uttar, King Virata’s son and heir seeks to hire bodyguards (false)

13 Agents of the Principality of Kusa are hiring almost anyone they can to join the Principality’s armies in the war against the Maghadan invaders (true)

14 A cave was recently uncovered in the hills east of Viratapuri that has an entryway to the Patala Underworld; King Virata seeks to personally buy any Patala Glowing Gems that brave adventurers might be able to bring back from the depths (true)

15 The great Siddhi Ramdasa of Upaplavya has discovered a way to travel to and from Mount Kailash instantaneously (false)

16 A band of cannibalistic barbarians have set up camp on the northern border of the Thar Desert, the local lords would reward whoever might remove them (true)

17 A great Yaksha sage has recently arrived in Upaplavya; he’s deeply lovesick for a human woman who would not return his affections, and has taken to drunkenness and brawling. (true)

18 The Pandavas have been organizing groups of brave adventurers to make incursions into the Khandava jungle, seeking to clear it of dangerous monsters, and offering rewards to any who bring back the heads of Nagas, Asuras, or other dangerous supernatural creatures (true)

19 King Kansa of Mathura is offering an astounding reward to any who can bring him the means to slay Krishna (true)

20 In the forest outside Badwari village a group of Vanara thieves have disguised themselves as ordinary monkeys; they’re hiding an enormous treasure (false)


Currently Smoking: Stanwell Deluxe + Image Latakia

(Originally posted April 9, 2013)


  1. Cute adventure seeds! Though I'd argue with some a bit. Like, Pandava brothers wouldn't seek anybody else for clearing forest from naglas, asuras or whatever. They would be very angry at anybody who dared to put out such gossip, because they could easily do it themselves. And they did, especially Bhīma. Besides that, during their exile they were to keep their position secret.

    1. This would be BEFORE their exile, when they were building their kingdom. That's why they're clearing out the jungle; it's actually part of the Mahabharata.
      And you might be right about the rest, but if you look at it, the Khandava jungle is enormous. I'm sure that, practically speaking, they'd probably have sent some dudes to take care of the more peripheral areas while they handled the big bosses worthy of their might.