Age of Worms

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In the World of Greyhawk campaign setting for the Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game, the Age of Worms is an age of darkness and despair heard of only in ancient prophecies.

The herald of the Age of Worms is said to be the undead deity Kyuss, who is somehow involved with the Ebon Triad.

The Age of Worms Adventure Path

The Age of Worms can also refer to Dungeon magazine's Age of Worms Adventure Path, a campaign designed to take player characters from 1st-20th level over the course of twelve issues (Dungeon #124-135). Though the adventure path is set in a somewhat abstracted World of Greyhawk (The Free City of Greyhawk becomes The Free City, etc.), it can be adapted to other D&D campaign worlds and notes are provided for converting the setting to Eberron or Forgotten Realms.

The Age of Worms adventure path was the next in succession after the Shackled City adventure path. It is followed by a third Adventure Path called Savage Tide.

Summary

The Age of Worms develops from a small town of Diamond Lake, then leads to intrigue in the Free City and then on to a mysterious cult that exists only as a front to bring about the events leading up to the Age of Worms. As the players encounter the various architects of the plot, they uncover the nature of the coming age, and battle the ultimate masterminds behind it. In the end, they face the two primary antagonists: Dragotha and Kyuss.

This adventure path differs from the first primarily in its use of established World of Greyhawk characters such as Kyuss; locations such as Greyhawk (though it is called "The Free City"); and items such as the Rod of Seven Parts.

The entire Adventure Path consists of the following adventures:

  • "The Whispering Cairn" By Erik Mona, Dungeon #124. A band of would-be adventurers explore a long-lost tomb near Diamond Lake and uncover a necromancer's conspiracy with local merchants.
  • "The Three Faces of Evil" By Mike Mearls, Dungeon #125. The heroes penetrate a tripartite cult operating in secret underneath Dourstone Mine, hoping to merge their three unholy deities. The name of Kyuss and rumors of worm-eaten dead arise.
  • "Encounter at Blackwall Keep" By Sean K. Reynolds, Dungeon #126. While seeking out a sage to shed light on their recent discoveries, the heroes come upon an Blackwall Keep beset by lizardfolk, and a rescue mission ensues.
  • "The Hall of Harsh Reflections" By Jason Buhlman, Dungeon #127. In the enormous Free City, doppelganger assassins lead the heroes to an illithid dealing in unholy relics.
  • "The Champion's Belt" By Tito Leati, Dungeon #128. In order to investigate the warlord who tried to have them killed, the heroes must enroll in the greatest gladiatorial tournament in the world -- the Free City Games. What they end up with is an Apostle of Kyuss come to claim the blood of a champion.
  • "A Gathering of Winds" By Wolfgang Baur, Dungeon #129. The heroes return to Diamond Lake to seek out their patron Allustan and present him with all they've learned of the cult of Kyuss and their activity. When they find a Ilthane has leveled Allustan's home, they must defeat it and re-enter the Whispering Cairn to seek out the missing wizard.
  • "The Spire of Long Shadows" By Jesse Decker, Dungeon #130. Allustan's mentor Manzorian tells the heroes of his colleague Balakarde, who explored the site of Kyuss' divine apotheosis. When they follow in Balakarde's footsteps, the heroes find a site with tales of its own to tell of Kyuss and his blasphemous practices, as well as the alien architect of the Age of Worms.
  • "The Prince of Redhand" By Richard Pett, Dungeon #131. Manzorian tells the heroes to seek out Lashonna, sorcerous advisor to tyrannical Prince Zeech of Redhand and possibly the last person to see Balakarde alive. To meet her, however, the heroes must make it through Prince Zeech's extravagant ball and be on their best behavior.
  • "The Library of Last Resort" By Nicholas Logue, Dungeon #132. Once the heroes meet Lashonna, she sends them to the Isle of Last Resort, to uncover the location of the phylactery of Kyuss' general, the dracolich Dragotha. A power-hungry cleric of Vecna and his minions have the same idea, however.
  • "Kings of the Rift" By Greg A. Vaughan, Dungeon #133. Now that the heroes know where to find Dragotha's phylactery, they must get it. This involves infiltrating a huge fortress currently occupied by giants and besieged by dragons.
  • "Into the Wormcrawl Fissure" By James Jacobs, Dungeon #134. With Dragotha's phylactery secured, the heroes must travel into the deadly Wormcrawl Fissure to reunite Balakarde's broken spirit and either destroy or blackmail Kyuss' dracolich general.
  • "Dawn of a New Age" By Tito Leati, Dungeon #135. The new Spire is complete, and Alhaster is under siege from legions of Kyuss's undead minions. The heroes must battle their way through the city and fight back the darkness before confronting the Wormgod himself.

See also

Age of Worms Timeline

Bibliography

  • Leati, Tito. "The Champion's Belt." Dungeon #128. Bellevue, WA: Paizo Publishing, 2005.
  • -----. "Dawn of a New Age." Dungeon #135. Bellevue, WA: Paizo Publishing, 2006.
  • Mearls, Mike. "The Three Faces of Evil. Dungeon #125. Bellevue, WA: Paizo Publishing, 2005.