Friday, February 22, 2013

[New Project] - Ghorl Nigral, the Black Pit

I have had an idea running around my head ever since a post over Google+ talked about the in-limbo Kickstarter Dwimmermount, I have never been a fan of it, in fact, never heard of it until the whole thing started blowing up. But the megadungeon seed was planted. I even attempted to start up a serious community on Google+ for the development of a massive mega-dungeon project...then I shelved it. Unfortunately, and surprising for me, the idea did not faded and it kept eating away at me in the back of my head. So I contacted Bryan and asked what he thought about it.

Bethmoora is a small city, nearly an outpost, that clings to the rim of a massive hole. The town in unique in the fact that it is new but old at the same time. When asked, the citizens will tell you the town has been ravaged and completely destroyed numerous times by creatures from Ghorl Nigral, the Black Pit. A high wall separates the town's squat stone buildings from the Pit while a low wall surrounds the non-rim sides of the town. Strangers would ponder upon this until they are awakened in the middle of the night by the roar of a hungry Expliant Hound climbing out of the Pit.

Merchants in town hawk a multitude of maps claimed to have been brought back by survivors of the hell of the Pit. Additionally the town has a large inn and well stocked general store. The town now serves a single purpose to stock the adventurer for their descent into the pit, and to help heal/re-equip those coming back. The town is notoriously rough and rowdy as the population is constantly changing as new folks fail to return from their quests below and as as new folks arrive to seek their fortunes in the depths.

Ghorl Nigral
Ghorl Nigral is also known as the Black Pit, Death Pit, Hell, Shadowfall, etc. There are many names but none can really do justice and describe the massive hole that stretches nearly 5,000 feet across, a gaping vertical hole that descends into black darkness below. The cliff wall is sheered clean and stretches nearly vertical at a nearly 90 degree angle into the earth. The sides are clearly old, with cracks, plants precariously gripping to the wall, and chunks missing here and there due to various incidents (see the Incident of the Gu-Sarchem) throughout it's nearly 750 years of existence.

The closest section of the chambers that lead off the Pit is a small area that was cleared hundreds of years ago and served as a small jail/prison for the worst of criminals from the town. After too numerous a number of invasions and escapes the jail was moved back to the city. Those criminals that are the worst and not suited for a jail cell are simply pushed over the Rim Wall and (hopefully) plummet to their death somewhere in the blackness below. In recent memory, various groups have occupied the former jail from bandits, an ogre clan that climbed up from the dark, goblins, and even at one point a ghoul called the cells it's lair. The roster of what is here is constantly changing and who, or what, is currently "occupying the Jail" is always the talk of the taverns in town.

I drew this map using my trusty Sharpie Pens, both Fine and Medium, on plain white copy paper. I make the map and adventure seed available here for personal use. If you write an alternate adventure or use the map in your game, on your blog, or what have you, please let me know. I would love to know! You cannot use it in any commercial or non-commercial product without my prior approval.


  1. We agree that pits are cool sites for multiple expeditions into ruins!

    1. Ah yes! I had forgotten about your pit adventure, very cool!

  2. Nice idea. I'll be interested to see how this develops. Good luck!