Burn Everything Gaming

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Adventure Design: Chamber of the Seven Sins

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I was digging through some of my old notes for a campaign and found some old session notes for an adventure. So I thought I’d share it with everyone instead. Maybe you can try it out as a fun encounter or unexpected challenge in a dungeon crawl.

The Chamber of Seven Sins was designed for a Fate-based game, but can be used in any system. Each room is designed to inflict consequences on the players related to one of the sins. Hopefully long-lasting consequences, so as to spark some wonderful opportunities for demons and evil wizards in future encounters.

The Main Chamber

You find yourself in a colorful circular chamber sparsely furnished with a hat rack, a broken mirror, and a couple of shabby chairs. There are no blacks or whites or greys in this room. Instead it looks like someone took a rainbow paintball gun and recolored everything in a hissy fit. There are seven doors on the walls, each with a plaque at eye level that labels the door in a nonsense word. The doors are the only items in the room that are a solid color.

The rainbow colors are a bit of a red herring to explain the 7 doors. If the players examine the doors, they will find the words for each sin contained within written in Cryptogram (letters replaced with other letters): JHIMY, CHUPO, OTGN, WEDM, SWEMMATN, DWAMY, and SHOOP.

*A = I    *B=X     *C=K     *D=P     *E=O     *F=R      *G=S     *H=Y     *I=U      *J=Z       *K=F      *L=W    *M=V
*N=T     *O=A    *P=C     *Q=L     *R=H     *S=D     *T=M    *U=E     *V=G    *W=J     *X=Q     *Y=N     *Z=B

Searching the room will find a folded up note (the inside is black and white, so it can easily be read). The note is also in a cryptogram, which hopefully the party can solve. Skill checks should reward clues to solve it: Every letter is actually a different letter, vowels are swapped with other vowels, Y is a consonant, the writer never refers to themselves in first person, etc.

MYUD ATO JHUMOD MA NAE JUMY I YOWCREW KWEO. MYO ATWN JIN MA ODKICO MYUD HAAV UD MA RIKO IT OGUW JUMYUT NAE. KYAADO I PAAH MYIM NAE IHO IXWO MA AGOHKAVO WODM NAE DEKKEVX MA OMOHTIW MOVCMIMUAT. ZEDM ATO OIKY JUWW DOO NAE MYHAESY DIROWN.

I like to hide the note in the hat rack personally, but it can be on the bottom side of the chair instead. Try to encourage the players to solve the puzzle or try other checks to sense evil radiating from the doors. It is usually more fun if the player character gets to choose which sin they will face.

Also note, as soon as a player enters a door it vanishes before another player can go in. No sense in having the entire group try to face laziness together, eh?

Wrath

The Red Door leads to another circular room that at first appears to be empty. Give the character a chance to look around, and they will discover that they are now dressed in a matador costume, complete with a long red cape. When they realize this, a giant minatory will appear along with 4 crystal pillars that flash red whenever someone says something out of anger.

The minotaur will scream in rage and charge like a bull at the player. It has +6 to attack and always inflicts exactly 3 points of piercing physical stress when it hits a character. Then it will take a turn to shout something angry and cheesy (“You are no match for the anger that gives me strength!”), giving the player character a chance to watch the pillars flash red and power it up.

Wrath’s goal is to trick the player character into getting angry themselves and slaughter the minotaur with the power of the pillars. The pillars will clear physical stress, increase damage, lower the minotaur’s defense, and even heal physical consequences. The minotaur will go from angry to cowardly (but not stop attacking) as the player character starts absorbing its powers. Killing the minotaur triggers the pillars to hit the character with a mental attack of 10-30, depending on how much their powers helped the character kill the beast.

If the player character in question is not a physical fighter type, feel free to have the pillars grant a character fire magic fueled by their anger instead. This magic does not cost any refresh since it is just the pillars giving them this power.

MY HEART IS ALWAYS ANGRY is a great moderate or severe mental consequence. If the player character takes an extreme consequence, add the word BERSERKER or RAGING to the start of their aspect. If a player character is taken out by an attack, they will become a berserk NPC that tries to kill all of the surviving PCs until they are subdued, at which point WRATH burns their body to ash.

Pride

The Indigo Door leads to a long hall, with an onyx pedestal at the far end. A golden key rests on the pedestal where the character can clearly see it. Between the player and the key are about 200 impish creatures with purple skin. None of them stand above 2 feet tall even with their horns.

The imps mock the character as soon as they are able, trying to inflict mental stress with weak (+0) attacks. They are also easily destroyed if attacked (defense +0, no hp/stress) and will try to swarm the character as soon as things get violent.

Pride’s goal is to get the character to resist the belittling talk of the imps and then celebrate their triumph over the frail ‘pride’ imps when they vanquish so many of the foes. When they get the key, if they have celebrated their triumph in any way, hit them with a mental attack as Pride speaks in their head. For Fate, this should be a mental attack of 10-30 shifts of power depending on how much they stood up for themselves.

If the player character is not a fighter, appeal to however they resist the imps. If the speak up for themselves against an insult, have the imp that shouted that insult pop out of existence and the rest of the imps look horrified before they try to continue insults.

PRIDE TAKES ROOT IN MY HEAD is a good moderate or severe mental consequence. If the character has to take an extreme consequence, I suggest changing an aspect so that it starts with the words “THE VERY BEST” or something similar. If a player is taken out by the attack, they are literally possessed by Pride as an NPC and will have to make a new character.

Envy

The Green Door leads to a large room that is somehow a cross between a trophy room and a museum. A cold breeze will hint that the player character is now completely naked. When they realize this, have them notice a woman with green eyes setting their clothes and such up on a dummy at the far side of the room. She will lock herself in the case with the dummy when PC approaches and respond to any questions or threats by bragging about how everything in the room is hers.

The ‘glass’ cases are resistant to magic, and physical blows would be difficult to break the glass with unarmed. Fortunately there are several items not in cases that can be picked up and used as a weapon (such as a giant hammer that is light as a feather to the wielder or a diamond obelisk trophy) and plenty of stylish outfits. The green eyed woman will react with escalating fear and horror every time the player character takes something from its proper place.

In truth, Envy’s goal is to get the player to steal her things. All her pleas are passive attempts to encourage the player character to take more of her stuff. When they have stolen enough of her things, she will open the case and offer give them back their things (not trade), at which point they are hit with a mental attack of 10-30 shifts depending on how many things they still have on them.

If the player character does not have or need much (a were-form shifter or a monk with a vow of poverty), having their things stolen may not be that daunting. In this case, have the green eyed woman up the mockery when she brags until the PC messes with her other things. Then push them with “Don’t you keep that!” and “Set that down! It’s MINE!” pleas. After all, envy is not about taking what you NEED.

WHAT’S YOURS SHOULD BE MINE is a good moderate or severe consequence for someone that takes Envy’s psychic attack. If they take an extreme consequence, try adding INSECURE to the beginning of an aspect or CONSUMED BY ENVY to the end of one. If a player is taken out, they become an NPC consumed with Envy that will try to strip the other player characters of everything they have until they are subdued, at which point they melt into acid.

Lust

The Violet Door leads to a velvet bedroom filled with marble statues of people posed in erotic positions with faces frozen in a mix of ecstasy and horror. The only other piece of furniture is, of course, the giant bed where a large muscular man sits. He wears only tuxedo pants and smiles broadly when you look at him. This sends a chill through the player character that causes them to shiver, prompting them to hug themselves and thus notice that they have changed genders.

The handsome porn star does not look like a demon and is not forceful unless attacked. He explains that he has changed the PC’s gender and will only switch them back if they can withstand an hour with him losing their new virginity of their own free will. Player characters should be encouraged to offer an alternative competition for a chance to win, which Lust will accept.

While Lust would be happy to transform the character into another sex toy statue, his real goal is to get a player character to take one of the sex slaves out with them. They are all empty bodies that he can possess. Thus, when it looks like the PC is about to win despite his attempts at sexual distraction, he will throw in one of his slaves to ‘sweeten’ the deal. Then, when he loses, his current body will turn to marble and the character will be able to free the first statue they touch, turning it back into flesh. This touch also hits the player character with a mental whammy of 10-30 shifts of power, depending on how much flirting and sexual activity the player character did themselves.

If a player character agrees to his original challenge, they must defend against a physical and mental attack every 10 minutes with a +10 base attack. If they try to attack the porn star man instead of talking, he will moan in pleasure about the rough stuff and make everything sexual while trying to grapple the PC into submission. If successfully killed, he will ‘reward’ the PC with one statue of their choice, with his ‘dying breath’ of course.

DESPERATE FOR PHYSICAL SATISFACTION is a good moderate or severe mental consequence. If the player character takes an extreme consequence, have them add FOR GINA (or whatever their rescued person’s name is) to the end of one of their aspects to tie them to Lust’s new host body. If the character is taken out, they remain in their new gender as a statue in Lust’s collection which Lust can later use as their own body.

Gluttony

The Orange Door leads a large table filled with many pies of great variety (meat, fruit, crème, etc.). A fat humanoid with the head of a pig sits at one end of the table. An empty chair is on the other side. The pig person then announces that the challenge of this room is a pie-eating contest. Whomever eats the most pies wins, and the loser will have to stay in this room until they defeat someone.

During the challenge, which should be a series of rounds, players will notice that their body is affected by the different pies they eat. Meat pies give them a bonus to physical traits, fruit pies boost different mental and social traits, while crème pies make useless/scary alterations (fatter, swelling body parts, pig-like characteristics). In other words, be careful what you eat.

Gluttony wants the player character to eat as much as possible, which is why some of the pies are ‘good’ and some are ‘bad’. This distracts the player character from thinking that eating anything at all is bad in a room of gluttony. To this end, the pig person will start with the crème pies and get more pig-like in front of the character, then switch to a meat pie if the character is hesitating. When the contest is over, the food hits the player character with a mental whammy of 10-30 shifts of power, depending on how much they ate. Of course, all the positive effects vanish right before the attack hits.

If a character refuses to join in the contest, have the pig person start without them and concentrate on the good pies so that the character sees them getting stronger. If they try to attack, the pig person will throw a pie at them with a dismissive ‘Eat something!” and resume eating. Hopefully some of the pie gets in their mouth, gives them a boost, and changes their mind about participating.

DEDICATED TO INDULGENCE is a good moderate or severe consequence for surviving the mental food attack. If the player character takes an extreme consequence, feel free to add HUNGRY or CHUBBY to the beginning of one of their aspects. If a character is taken out by this attack, they become a pig person NPC that is only driven by hunger. Feel free to have their bite transform others into pig people if you want a really weird zombie-like apocalypse to your game now.

Sloth

The Blue Door leads to a room that is empty except for a clone of the pc lying on a comfortable couch or small bed. The clone is sleeping and does not wake up if spoken to, touched, or shaken. If the player character tries to move their clone, they find them to be extremely heavy to the point where they cannot get off of the couch.

Attempts to examine the couch do not reveal anything obviously special, although it is equally heavy and thus cannot be pushed or tilted. It is also impervious to damage. If the clone is attacked, the player character takes the damage as if they had attacked themselves. If by spending fate points or rolling all +’s the player does manage to get the clone out of the couch, they continue to sleep on the floor.

Sloth’s goal is to get the player to stop trying things and thus succumb to doing nothing. Being laziness incarnated, it will do as little as possible to achieve its goal. But it very much wants to win, so it will try to keep the player character’s physical activity to a minimum. When everyone else clears there room (or after 12 rounds if this is a solo thing), the player character takes a mental attack of 10-30 strength depending on how many turns the player was idle physically (judgement call on how active a spell or mental ability is).

If the player character tries to use magic to read the clone’s mind, have them read a boring dream or perhaps a shameful one so that they do not spend much time pursuing this venue. The couch is immune to magical effects. If the player character gets on the couch with the clone, feel free to have the clone hug them like a teddy bear. If the player keeps trying something every round, try to have the clone mumble something in their sleep so that the player character will be tempted to stop and try to listen.

“LET’S NOT DO ANYTHING” makes a great moderate or severe consequence for a player that takes the mental whammy. If the PC takes an extreme consequence, add WORN DOWN or SAPPED to one of their aspects. If a player character is taken out by the mental attack, the clone vanishes and the now NPC lays down on the couch for an eternal rest.

Greed

The Yellow Door leads to a Cave of Wonders style treasure room, with big diamonds embedded in the golden floor forming letters that read “If you truly can resist Greed, take only one thing from here to escape.” Feel free to elaborate any treasures to tempt the player and roll a weak (+0) provoke check to try and get the player character to take something. Skill checks to analyze what is useful should point the player character to a beat up old oil lamp with a genie inside.

As the player character approaches the lamp, really try to sell how wonderful and amazing the other treasures are. Tell the character that they can touch so long as they don’t actually take anything. Maybe even have a magic mirror or a talking sword try to convince a player character to take them along. When they finally rub the lamp, the genie will appear and offer them 3 wishes.

Greed’s plan is to get the player character to use more than one wish (and take something with them), which causes them to take a mental attack of 10-30 depending on how much greedy they are with what they are trying to take out. Nothing actually leaves with them (including powers, wishes, or the lamp its self). This will leave them empty and wanting what they could not have, hopefully making enough room in their soul for Greed to set up a summer home.

If a player is completely immune to the temptation of physical things, have the genie try to encourage them to make wishes for other people (which is still taking stuff you don’t need, technically). Or have the genie play up their slavery in hopes that the PC will wish for their freedom, again something the individual does not need to escape themselves.

I MUST HAVE MORE is a good moderate or severe mental consequence. If the character takes an extreme consequence, add NEEDY GREEDY to the start of one of their aspects. If the character is taken out, they are transformed into an NPC djinn forced to grant wishes that give other people the things they can never have for themselves.

Getting Out

I recommend running each room at the same time, letting each player take a turn (possibly in initiative order) even though they are all in separate rooms. This way no one is expecting each room to have a twist until it starts hitting them. Once a player has finished a challenge (and been hit with the final mental attack), teleport them to the exit room (or at least further in if you are running a full dungeon delve). They all appear there at once, despite how long they spent in rooms.

Objects they obtained should not travel with them (unless they are NPCs now possessed by demons of sin). The reward for overcoming the rooms is survival (and any treasure you want to put in the other dungeon rooms). And if you don’t want a TPK, feel free to offer ‘redemption’ in an adventure to give the party a chance to overcome their wicked nature for a favor to a powerful entity.

Closing Thoughts

I will also note that any adventure that delves into a PC’s soul is not very interesting as a one-shot. This is much better as an insert into a campaign, preferable after a couple of sessions at least. Players should struggle with the choices that escalate through this adventure.

Also, if anyone in your party gets taken out by a mental attack where the fairy casting it has +0 to their natural ability, consider that this scenario may not be a ‘fair’ one to run seriously. It may be a lot of fun as a dream sequence though. J

As always, thanks for reading. I hope you get something useful or at least amusing out of everything.

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Author: Burn Everything Gaming

Website that mostly produces Actual Play Podcast as well as game reviews and other musings on the topic. Hope you enjoy.

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