Trapmaster: The Empty Shelf

The Empty Shelf Setting the heavy tome in place, Mira thought to herself, “These sages need to get out more. I am bored just looking at these books. I would rather eat sawdust than read them. They are probably drier…” Indeed, the bookshelves mask the seams in the pivoting section of wall ahead, but the tiny scrape marks in the floor give it away. Opening the panel is another issue. Attempts to manipulate the pivot seem...

Trapmaster: The Diviner’s Judgement

The Diviner’s Judgement Facing one way and then the other, Mira finally turned back toward the doorway. Reaching out to the double doors blocking her way, she made her choice… The 10-ft.-wide corridor turns the corner and comes to an end fifteen feet ahead. A sturdy double door bisects the plain stone wall. Both panels sport brass knobs; no lock or keyhole is evident. The skeleton of a long-dead human lies sprawled in front of the...

Trapmaster: Courage Triumphant

Courage Triumphant Mira raised a weary and trembling arm, blackened with corruption, and grasped the door pull. “Hopefully, I’ve gotten this right,” she muttered as she pulled with all her remaining strength… Three doors block the way, a blackened iron pull on each. The three pieces of hardware are fashioned as grotesques—the ring pull dangling from the visages of horrific creatures rendered in hard metal. One pull resembles a...

Trapmaster: Seasons of Love

Seasons of Love Mira spat with frustration. It seemed a shame to leave some of the best pieces behind, but as the verse hinted, there is always some loss in the search for love…  A rosewood box on a recessed shelf awaits across from the entrance to this 15-ft.-by-20-ft. chamber. The walls and 20-ft.-high vaulted ceiling bear the mural of an idyllic retreat in the woods, just the kind sought by lovers for a private tryst. Floor mosaics...

Trapmaster: The Woodpile

The Woodpile Reaching out to grab the handle of the axe, Mira sighed and thought to herself, “This is why I left the farm. I never did much enjoy morning chores…”  A 35-ft.-long tree trunk rests on the ground in the middle of a 15-ft.-by-55-ft. chamber, a whirring saw-blade spinning four feet above the felled timber. A woodbin just inside the door holds twelve split pieces of wood. A similar bin on the far side of the room...

Trapmaster: Spike-Eating Pit Trap

Spike-Eating Pit Trap Brushing the flakes of rust from her hands, Mira reached into her pouch and withdrew a wooden spike. Glad now that she had paid the druids of the grove to enchant it, the young rogue carefully tapped it into the seam of the pit trap ahead, ignoring the statues of horrific creatures awaiting her at the end of the corridor… At the far end of the 10-ft-wide corridor, six stone monsters flank a door, the heads of each of the...

Trapsmith: Keep Them Guessing

In the recent interview I did, I mentioned my love of fencing, feinting, and second intentions. Let me show you how that is applied to trapsmithing. First, let’s acknowledge that the players are excellent and efficient problem solvers. A GM presents a problem and most players will find a solution for it within a minute—usually faster than that. But, maybe this time the trap lies in the solution? The world burns! Arch-heretic Haxian Firetongue...

Questioning the Trapsmith: An Interview

Maurice de Mare, trapsmith and author of the traps and adventure you’ll find in the Trapsmith book by Kobold Press, has taken several minutes of his time to answer a few questions for us! Come see what he has to say about designing traps, playtesting the adventure, and Paizo’s RPG Superstar. You’ve been a long-time contributor to Kobold Press with your Trapsmith blog articles and now your Trapsmith book. What about traps keeps...

Trapsmith Now Available

After many years of research, the kobolds are ready to share some of their most treasured secrets: their traps and a set of trapsmithing rules, as discovered by expert trapsmith Maurice de Mare! Traps make your game better and add a sting of surprise to any encounter. The Trapsmith sourcebook provides you with more than 100 original, easy-to-run traps for almost every Challenge Ratings, and each trap has been maximized for in-game flavor and...

Trapsmith: Get Gavin (Part 2)

The second part of “Get Gavin” unfolds before you. In this follow-up to the quick little adventure vignette, we have the trapsmith himself, plus more rooms and traps. If you missed part 1, you should certainly check it out. 10. Bedroom Two strong wooden doors lead to the terrace. The bedroom is very spacious. Luxurious linens cover the bed. If taken, they could fetch 75 gp. The doors are currently locked, and  it requires a DC 35...

Trapsmith: Get Gavin (Part 1)

Too many deaths, too many friends lost. They were cheated, drowned, and maimed. All died a horrible death—all because of one man: Gavin. It took some effort to track him down, but you traced him to his workshop and home. It is time to settle scores. 1. Gavin’s Interior Defenses Above two stout wooden doors, bold yellow letters proclaims the building to be home to “Gavin’s Interior Defenses.” A smaller sign lets the reader know that admittance...

Trapsmith: No Rest for the Wicked

Whistling a tune, with a fishing rod slung across his right shoulder and his hammock wrapped under his left arm, Gavin strolled down toward the lake’s edge. A day of leisure would do him good—no clients, no deadlines, just him lying in the sun, angling for fish. The corpse ended his whistling, and distant fighting noises reached Gavin’s ears at about the same time. Near the corpse, a beautiful rapier lay on the ground, but the corpse’s hat was...

Trapsmith: Seasonal Solutions

“Don’t.” Turmish looked at him quizzically. “It’s only a decorated tree, Gavin. Besides I am hungry and that goose looks tasty.” “Again. Don’t. You know how druids get all excited during the season, so don’t. I am not going to save you. That,“ Gavin pointed at the large fir tree decorated with tinsel and baubles, “is a trap. I can feel it in my bones.” Druids are scary. Their dealings with the fickle fey and their strange seasonal rituals can...

Trapsmith: Wretched Wrecking Ball Trap

“What is a wizard? A wizard is a cold, calculating mind ruled by reason. A wizard possesses untold power.” After his little speech, Thersus proudly looked down on his pupil. “So, Gavin, do you want to be a wizard when you grow up?” The boy looked Thersus up and down and answered, “You’re just a man. Daddy says men die.” * * * Gavin smiled as he remembered the beating that followed. Thersus had remained his tutor for the rest of the year, but...

Trapsmith: Surgical Traps

Maybe I shouldn’t continue. The thought surprised Gavin, and he stopped working on one of his more experimental designs. Pacing back and forth, Gavin considered his supplies: a neat row of surgeon’s tools, a stuffed weasel, a potion of healing, and a bedsheet. He knew what he considered to do with the potion of healing was “wrong,” but if he did it, the result would be legendary. In the end, legendary won. Trapsmiths do have a conscience—they...


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