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Shackled City main page

Page history last edited by Shimrath 9 years, 3 months ago


     The Shackled City Adventure Path centres around the City of Cauldron, the legends of the area and the politics within it.  The campaign was originally 11 adventures presented by Paizo in Dungeon Magazine using Dungeons & Dragons 3.0 rules.  Paizo produced a hardcover version that added one adventure, gathered the entire campaign into one book and updated the rules to 3.5.  Taken from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shackled_City,  the entire Adventure Path consists of the following adventures:


  • Life's Bazaar By Christopher Perkins, Dungeon #97, March 2003. In this adventure the player characters investigate kidnappings. The trail leads to a slaver operating from Underdark passages below the city.
  • Drakthar's Way, added for the hardcover collection. In this adventure small bands of goblins raid and vandalize the city. The player characters track the goblins to a hideout in a series of caves below the city that lead out the side of the mountain. The goblins are led by a vampiric bugbear, the eponymous Drakthar.
  • Flood Season By James Jacobs, Dungeon #98. In this adventure the city of Cauldron is threatened by flooding during the rainy season. Magical wands of "control water" normally used to control the flooding are stolen and taken to a lair below the city. The player characters presumably track down and recover the stolen wands.
  • Zenith Trajectory By David Noonan, Dungeon #102. The player characters are asked to rescue Zenith Splintershield, a dwarf who has been missing since heading into the Underdark to fight evil. Zenith has gone insane and is treated as prophet by the kuo-toa (frog-people) who captured him.
  • The Demonskar Legacy By Tito Leati, Dungeon #104. In this chapter, the heroes must find a missing paladin to stop an incursion by Cauldron to nearby Redgorge. After retracing his steps through a jungle, a giant-controlled cavern, and an otherworldly maze, they must face the demonic architect of the area's strife.
  • Test of the Smoking Eye By David Noonan, Dungeon #107. Following their warning from a dying paladin to "seek the sign of the smoking eye", a mysterious plane-wanderer asks for their help in completing a series of test to redeem an abandoned layer of the Abyss.
  • Secrets of the Soul Pillars By Jesse Decker, Dungeon #109. After several assassins attempt to kill the heroes, they are traced back to the temple of Wee Jas. After assaulting the temple and fighting its undead inhabitants, they are led to an ancient frozen spell weaver complex, where a powerful oracle is guarded by a horrific undying dragon.
  • Lords of Oblivion By Christopher Perkins, Dungeon #111. An ally of the heroes is kidnapped and taken to a safe house of the Last Laugh, Cauldron's thieves guild. Once they break in and rescue him from the den of thieves, they learn of a secret meeting among some of the realm's most horrific criminals at a noble's mansion. In addition, their beholder overlord is practicing unholy rituals in the complex below.
  • Foundation of Flame By Chris Thomasson, Dungeon #113. The Cagewrights begin their plans in earnest now, awakening the volcano on which Cauldron is built. Spewing lava, earthquakes, and collapsing buildings require the heroes help to get everyone evacuated. Worse, demodands begin to emerge from a planar rift already building, and a certain local dragon gets riled up by it all.
  • Thirteen Cages By Chris Thomasson, Dungeon #114. The heroes must march on the Cagewrights' headquarters, in the heart of a volcano, before their ritual is complete and a permanent gate to Carceri is opened above Cauldron.
  • Strike on Shatterhorn By Christopher Perkins, Dungeon #115. What few Cagewrights remain must be hunted down and exterminated in their jungle retreat.
  • Asylum By Christopher Perkins, Dungeon #116. When the twisted mind of Adimarchus, imprisoned Demon Prince of Madness, leaks into Occipitus and begins resurrecting his followers, the heroes realize they must go to the otherworldly asylum of Skullrot where Adimarchus is imprisoned and destroy him utterly.


A slightly more comprehensive and also humorous synopsis can be found here.


Those looking at running this campaign are recommended to read the Starting info page and look through Foreshadowing ideas.  You can also look at this thread where DMs share tales of Glory to get an idea of the type of fun to be had.


Here's a page with possible dead ends and how DMs tried to get their players back into the campaign after a TPK or similar showstoppers (group is no longer following the thin red line, also called the railroad .-) 


In discussions on the Paizo SCAP forums, an alternate version of the campaign was put forward by Delvesdeep that cut back on the number of villains in the campaign.  This Alternate Villains version changes the later chapters more than the earlier ones.


Various DMs have been updating the campaign to 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons.


A number of "extra" adventures have also been devised.  These include:


  • Visit the Lucky Monkey - Adventurers go to the Lucky Monkey as they travel to Cauldron, foreshadowing events in Chapter 3.
  • Demonskar Ball - A lavish handling of the main elite social gathering taking place during the Flood Festival from the Flood Season adventure.
  • Necrocant Ambush - The Striders are ambushed by the Necrocants, and the adventuring group are the calvary arriving just in time.
  • Siege of Redgorge - Taking place after the end of The Demonskar Legacy and before Secrets of the Soul Pillars, this adventure covers the idea that Cauldron militia attack Redgorge, led by the Blue Duke and the Captain of the Guard of Cauldron.  The denizens of the Demonskar also take advantage of the chaos, looking to resolve their quest to conquer the town.
  • Sasserine-Navalant sidequest - If the group doesn't suspect the identity of the beholder by Chapter 6-7, this adventure can be used to foreshadow it.


Comments (1)

Kizan said

at 9:55 am on Oct 8, 2009

Dear Nib,

The link for the 5th section (The Demonskar Legacy) is broken and goes nowhere.


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