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Dungeons & Dragons 3.0/3.5 Premade Dungeon: "The Black Raven" Level 1

Updated on March 17, 2012

Welcome to Premade D&D Dungeons!

We've all been there before. Everyone in the Dungeons and Dragons group wants to play, but no one has the time to be a dungeon master and create the campaign. If you have someone willing to DM, then I have the dungeons for you! Simply print the text and maps, bring them to group, and you're all ready for monster slaying.

These dungeons use the 3.0 or 3.5 systems and rely on the Dungeon Master's Guide (abbreviated DMG from here on out), the Monster Manual (abbreviated MM), and the Player's Handbook (abbreviated PHB).

Clicking on the map images will give you a larger picture to print.


L1 Dungeon

Level 1 Dungeon
Level 1 Dungeon
The Hamlet
The Hamlet

The Black Raven: Part I

Levels 1-2

This dungeon is meant for four level-one characters. I recommend reading through this dungeon once or twice to get used to it before you run it. The words in Italics are intended to be read aloud to the players. Everything else is meant for the DM. Depending on your style of DMing, you have two options.

  • Option 1: Have the party start together at the small village, in which case you will skip ahead to the “hamlet” section.
  • Option 2: Have them start in the larger city nearby, in which case they will meet up with each other and form the actual party there.

The way this dungeon is set up allows you to have fun with a few challenges and lots of treasure for the party. You can obviously change the treasure as you see fit. It is a traditional level-one dungeon with a mixture of goblins, kobolds, and a challenging bugbear as the end boss! You can pull all the monsters’ stats from the Monster Manual(MM). The total XP for this dungeon is 5200XP, which will bring four level-one characters to level-two. This does not count any encounters the party may come across during travel time. I hope you enjoy running this dungeon as much as I enjoyed creating it!

This dungeon is the first of a small chain that will span six levels. The story behind the dungeons is thus: A wizard stumbled upon an ancient tomb locked away in an abandoned keep in a swamp south of the trade city Fligrin. He was eager to discover the secrets of the tomb and didn’t cast any wards to protect himself. He began reading the tomb and soon became obsessed with it. Unable to stop reading it, he soon became mad with power. He began to gather lizard folk tribes under his control and to build an army under the Black Raven. After gathering the tribes in the swamp, he began to reach beyond the swamp’s borders, taking orc, goblin, kobold, and bugbear tribes under his control. Now that he is nearly finished with building his army, his mind turns toward his first goal: to take over the city Fligrin and destroy his former teacher.

The nearby trade city is called Fligrin, named after the current mayor. It’s built in the center of three crossroads and has a significant amount of merchant traffic, making all kinds of exotic items available for the characters to purchase at a later date.

Fligrin

Large trade city containing everything the party may need, up to +1 magical items. Potions of healing 1d8+5 can also be purchased, as well as other minor potions. Look in the DMG for prices and other potions.

The trade city walls are made of thick, spiked logs that stretch around its border. Large wooden gates close the roads when the city locks down for the night. You are carefully watched by the many guards manning the walls and standing on the sides of the gate. All of the guards are wearing chainmail armor. Each carries a large wooden shield, a spear, and a longsword. The guards along the walls carry crossbows and have them ready at all times. Each guard has a purple tabard with a golden eagle across his chest.

The guards will let anyone in without question, unless they look monstrous (such as half-orc characters). In the case of a monstrous-looking character, the guards will stop him, ask what he is doing there, and warn him about getting to rowdy.

The trade city seems to be rather busy this time of day. Merchants have unpacked their wagons and are hawking their items to large crowds of people. The items vary from simple weapons to traveling goods to exotic furniture.

With a DC 15 spot/survival check, the players will notice that there are no guards in the area. In fact, there are no guards anywhere except for the ones along the city walls and the mayor’s building.

There are numerous posted signs along the buildings requesting assistance from any brave adventurers. Speak with Guard Captain Drek for information.

Any guard can take them to see Drek if they ask him to.

When the party decides to go visit the captain:

The guard leads you to the center of the city and to the mayor’s hall. The building is three stories tall and decorated with purple tabards with a golden eagle in the center of them. The massive double doors open wide to an enormous hall lined with tall balconies and numerous sizable tapestries with the giant golden eagle in the center. There are guards standing randomly about the area who pay you no mind. On the floor there is a purple carpet lined with golden trim. It leads you to the other side of the room, where a man sits behind a heavy oak desk in full plate armor. Leaning against the side of the chair is a large steel shield with a giant eagle painted upon it, and a longsword rests against that. When you approach the desk, the man looks up at you and scoffs, shaking his head slightly before waving his hand to dismiss the guard who escorted you into the building. “So you are the next batch of would-be adventurers wanting to make some coin.”

At this point, the party can ask the captain all the questions they would like. He wants them to go to a small hamlet, about two days walk from the city via the east gate. The hamlet sent runners asking for aid, as they’ve been getting attacked by organized goblins for the past few weeks and are about to become overrun. Drek is unable to send troops of his own, for his city has had its own fair share of attacks and has no troops to spare. He offers the party 100gp on completion of the mission. He will also offer four 1d8+5 healing potions to the party. If there is no healer in the party, then he may offer eight healing potions. He doesn’t know anything else about the town, other than it’s a new settlement guarded by militia. If the players ask about the attacks against the city, the captain says nothing about it and dismisses them. The mayor will not see anyone.

The party can go out into the city and ask around about the attacks. A DC-15 gather information check will find out that there has been much orc activity around the area but no real attacks against the city itself. Patrols have gone out and either don’t come back or return badly wounded.

Once the party decides to head out for the hamlet, you can roll for any encounters during the travel. The monsters they may encounter are goblins or orcs. The goblins will travel in groups of four; the orcs travel in pairs.

  • 0-40% no encounter
  • 41-70% goblins
  • 71-100% orcs

The Hamlet

Contains a town hall, two storage houses, three homes, and seven burned/destroyed buildings.

After two days of travel, you arrive at the small settlement around dusk. There is a waist-high wooden fence protecting it. Many buildings that look to have been houses at one point lie burned and destroyed just behind the fence line. Only a few buildings seem to be intact toward the center of the hamlet. There are a number of men and women lining the fence who carry bows, short swords, and pitchforks. They welcome your party with enthusiastic smiles and rush out to meet you and beg you for your help against the goblins.

The hamlet has about 60 people living here and only 30 are capable of defending it. They have almost no weaponry besides a few bows and some short swords. Most carry pitchforks and lengthy sharpened sticks that they use like spears. No one has any kind of armor or healing. If there is a healer in the party that wishes to help heal the wounded, the villagers will lead the party to the town hall in the center of the town. There, the party will find nine badly wounded villagers laid out on tables and the floor (may offer additional XP for the healer using his spells to heal any wounded). They all suffer from serious cuts and arrow wounds. DC 10 heal check to stabilize a villager and keep him from dying, if no healing spells are used.

If asked why the villagers don’t leave, most respond that the laws of Fligrin force them to stay. The hamlet has only homes and no merchants within it. Most of the villagers live about ten to a home. Some bunk in the town hall. The villagers offer the party a map; it has the location of the cave entrance where they believe the goblins to be coming from. If the party decides to wait until morning to head out, the elder of the hamlet will offer his home to them. He shares his home with nine other villagers. In the middle of the night, the hamlet will be attacked, and several villagers will come to the home and bang on the doors, begging the party for aid.

Battle: The Hamlet

The map provided shows you the basic look of the town.

  • B1: This is the town hall where the wounded are being kept. Most of the villagers are protecting this building, so the goblins and kobolds will stay away from this building.
  • B2: This is a large storage house half-filled with building materials.
  • B3: This is a large storage building that has about 13 days of food left for the village. This building is most likely to be attacked.
  • B4,5,6: These are small houses. They may get attacked with torches or flaming arrows.
  • The shaded boxes on the map are large piles of rubble from the houses that have been burnt down.

The party will have four random encounters of either 3-4 goblins, 4-5 kobolds or 1-2 goblins with 3 kobolds. These monsters don’t have anything of value on them.

At the end of the fight, 13 villagers will be wounded and need to be carried into the town hall, and 7 will be dead. The party can take some time to choose how to help them as they wish.

The Dungeon

This dungeon contains eight different rooms with monsters in them. The monsters are made up of goblins, kobolds, and 2 bugbears.

As you head out of the hamlet, the villagers crowd around as they cheer and pray for you. A clear warm day reveals a well-traveled road ahead of you. The trip itself is easy going with the map given to you by the villagers. After only an hour, you spot the cave entrance just where the map says it should be: off to the left of the road and up a small hillside. Outside the cave entrance are two streaming red banners with a black raven in the center of each.

There is nothing special about these banners if the party takes time to look at them. The cloth is plain linen. There has been heavy foot traffic entering and leaving the cave, mostly small footprints. A survival check from a tracker DC 15 will uncover a set of large footprints buried under the rest. It is your decision whether to tell the party that the tracks belong to a bugbear. There are no animals in this area, and many of the nearby trees have been chopped down. A large number of wood chips can be found randomly about the ground where the trees were cut down and then chopped into small logs.

Upon entering the cave, the smell of filth assaults you. The cave itself seems to be naturally made. The daylight only lasts ten feet into the cave before it becomes pitch black.

This is where the party will need some kind of light source to continue. Please note that this will alert the monsters to the party’s presence and possibly cause an ambush. There are only two groups of monsters that are in the hallways and able to see the light.

As you make your way deeper into the cave, you begin to hear a tapping sound.

A dwarf will instantly know this sound to be mining picks against the stone wall.

The cave widens a little bit, and you spot piles of small logs lining the right wall of the cave. Ten feet ahead, you see the cave narrowing once again and then only blackness.

There are 53 small logs lining the wall. If the party decided to search them they will find nothing of interest.

Ten feet down the tunnel, it becomes more like a carved hallway. The tapping sound grows louder, and you’re able to make out faint sounds of grumbling. At the edge of your torchlight, you can see the hallway split to the left and right.

At this point any dwarves in the party can make a spot check DC 15 to see the pit trap in front of the party. If a rogue is actively searching for traps, it’s a DC 15 to spot the trap and then disable it. If no one is searching, then the party member in front has to make a reflex save DC 15 to avoid falling into the pit. If they do not make it, they take 1d6 fall damage as they fall into a ten-foot hole. The party can walk along the edge of the trap with a DC 10 DEX check if the trap is set off. The monsters at the end of the hall can make a spot check DC 15 to see the edge of the torch light behind them. If they see it, they will run to investigate. If a party member wearing plate armor falls into the pit, the monsters in the broken hallway make DC 15 listen checks to hear it, and the monsters in R2 make DC 20 listen checks. If the monsters in R2 hear it, half of the mobs will run to R1 to warn them of intruders.

The hallway splits to the left and right. To the right, about ten feet down the hall you can see a door on the right side of the wall and a bit of commotion can be heard. To the left, there is only darkness in the hallway. The monotonous tapping sound suddenly stops, and a shriek echoes against the walls, followed by charging footsteps…

There are now two goblins and four kobolds rushing down the hallway toward the party. The goblins are shoving the kobolds ahead, so the kobolds run forward first. Substitute a tiny pickaxe that does 1d4 for the kobolds’ primary weapons in the MM. The monsters in R2 make a DC 20 listen check to hear the fighting in the hallway. If searched, the goblins and kobolds carry 5gp and 436cp.

To R1:

The hallway continues beyond the reaches of your torchlight, but the light does show the hall breaking off to the right first and then to the left five feet further down. Shrieks and grumbling emanate from the room on the right.

R1: Contains three goblins eating chow at the far end of the room. There are piles of rags and half-eaten, rotten food along the walls. There are several tables randomly about the room, most made for small creatures, and one large table with a large padded chair. At the end of the room, there are three goblins eating bowls of slop. These goblins will notice the party when they enter the room. They will try to attack the party from afar, because they know the party can’t see them. The goblins carry 9gp, 43sp, and 170cp.

To R2: (if R2 hasn’t been alerted)

As you walk up to the door along the wall, you can hear lots of yipping, almost like young dogs barking, behind the door.

If anyone understands draconic, they will know that kobolds are on the other side of the door and that they are fighting over bets. If the party kicks in the door, they will surprise all the kobolds, and the party will get a free turn of action. If they just open the door, it will go into initiative.

R2: Contains eight kobolds gambling.

There are small crates of mostly rotten food and barrels of filthy water. There is a large pile of coins in the center of the room where the kobolds had been gambling. There are also several pairs of bone dice scattered about the floor. Closer inspection of the dice show that one pair is loaded. The pile of coins equal out to 30gp, 160sp and 1324cp. None of the food is edible, and the water is too foul to drink.

The hallway outside the door ends with a cave wall where the kobolds had been digging away.

To R3:

As you near the end of the hallway, you hear what sounds like laughter, as well as the sound of stones hitting the floor accompanied by little whimpers.

R3: Contains two goblins using a kobold as target practice. The monsters will have the jump on the group if they are still using a light source. Even though the kobold has been teased by the two goblins, it will still help fight against the party. Searching them uncovers 600sp.

There are a dozen practice dummies in this room and weapon racks along the walls with rusty spears, javelins, and short swords. Ten red banners adorned with the black raven line the room.

To R4:

There is nothing but broken weapons and armor in this room. Nothing salvageable will be found if searched.

To R5:

A loud rumble reverberates on the other side of the door, much like the sound of a large bear snoring.

R5: Contains a sleeping female bugbear. Same stats can be used from the male bugbear from the MM. This bugbear is currently naked, so its AC is reduced to 14. It has a morningstar within its reach.

This room has a huge bed with no frame, one large red banner with a black raven in the center of it, and piles of rags that could be used as clothing. Searching the room will uncover 35gp and 13cp.

To R6:

R6: Contains 6 kobolds sleeping. They are wearing no armor, so their AC is reduced to 13. They have spears lying next to them.

There are piles of rags and small bedrolls scattered about the room. Searching the room will uncover 15gp, 60sp and 513cp.

To R7:

R7: Contains 3 goblins sleeping. They are wearing no armor, so their AC is reduced to 12. They have morningstars lying next to them.

There are piles of rags and small bedrolls scattered about the room. Searching the room will uncover 50gp and 300sp.

To R8:

On the way to R8, the party will be charged by two goblins. A third goblin will turn and sprint toward R8 to warn the bugbear inside. Searching the goblins uncovers 10gp and 400sp.

R8: Contains a bugbear sitting on a throne made of skulls and random bone limbs.

Upon entering the room, the party will be able to see a large goblin hopping up and down next to the bugbear. The goblin is pointing to the party while it shrieks. The bugbear will then drop its morningstar onto the goblin’s head, killing it. If the party has the ability to talk to the bugbear, he swears to destroy the party in the name of the great Vraxen. Searching the bugbear will uncover 70gp, 102sp, 7cp, and a key.

This room has 4 red banners, each adorned with the black raven. A tall mirror sits in the corner of the room. The mirror has decorative lining and stands on its own. If the party approaches the mirror, they will hear a quiet laughter coming from within the mirror before it explodes. Anyone within five feet makes a DC 15 reflex save or takes 1d6 damage from shards of glass.

There is a chest sitting behind the throne with a lock, DC 15 to pick. The key off the bugbear will open this lock. The chest contains five emerald gems worth 275gp each, 352gp, 1,476sp, and 1,107cp.

There is nothing else of interest in dungeon. The party can head back to the hamlet and report their success, where they will be rewarded with cheer and celebration. The elder will promise his 13-year-old daughter as a bride for one of the party members, once she comes of age.

This concludes this portion of the chain. If you wish to continue with the plot, next week’s dungeon will dive deeper into the black raven banners and the great Vraxen. I hope you and your party enjoyed this dungeon and will return for more.

Any suggestions, reactions, or requests? Feel free to leave me a comment below!

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    • Procopius profile image

      James Thompson 4 years ago from Tampa, FL

      Okay I am new here but I did see a few things I would fix:

      1- In your backstory you stated the wizard was reading the tomb twice, was he maybe "raiding" it?

      2- You tell the DM to let the players ask the captain any questions about the hamlet they want, he says it is a new one and guarded only by militia. That is all he knows? The villagers can tell the PCs that they can't leave because of the laws of the city, why is that? The captain did not know they were forced to stay?

      3- This is a new village, they had the time to put up a wall, and they chose to put up waist high sticks as a wall, against what?

      4- The villagers have 13 days of food left for them. Do they farm outside the fence? Hunt and gather for food?

      5- The random encounters with the goblins and kobolds are good but all 4 encounters are in the village, right. The monsters should have at least weapons, armor, and wooden shields. The leather would be only for small creatures but the morning stars, javelins and spears could be loot or left for the villagers.In my opinion if you are going to challenge the PCs with 4 encounters in the village, the monsters should have at least standard treasure.

      6- From my experience of many years of DMing, there are few too many encounters for the party to finish here in one shot. You have a total of app. 10 CR 1 encounters and 2 CR 2 encounters plus the trap which is also a CR 1 encounter. This would be very hard for a party of 4 1st level PCs to do in one shot. The DMG suggests the following:An encounter equal to the party's level should use about 20% of their resources so the PCs should be able to get past about 4-6 of these encounters before having to rest. you have 13 encounters here and yes each PC got a potion of healing that does a minimum of 6 hps of healing so maybe another 1-3 encounters. This would be a tough haul for any group of 4 PCs

      7- That being said, this is well thought out, straight forward, has room for some improvising by both the DM and PCs. I like this, it is a good set-up, and has some hooks for future gaming. Thanks for putting this up here where people can read it. Hope you are still involved here.

    • profile image

      Dalicus Prime 5 years ago

      Seems lansierl here certainly has done a good job with this one. May run it some day for the fellas.