Trapsmith: Epic Damage

Trapsmith: Epic Damage

statueAs you turn a corner, the corridor you are following widens dramatically to a width of 40 ft. Ahead 200 ft., four continual flames, placed evenly apart on both sides of the corridor, form a 40-ft square section. Beyond this lit area, the corridor connects to a roughly circular cavern. A huge statue, aglow in faerie fire, commands the center of the cavern. Depicting a woman with a stern expression, she stretches out her arm towards the lit square.

Obviously, the lit square is trapped! Absolute truth can paralyze a party just as well, perhaps even more, as doubt can. Trapsmiths love to add layers of deception into their designs, and this particular trap has many layers…

The illuminated 40-ft. square section is the location of the trap, but the statue is where the trap is “controlled.” The trap will only activate when a creature belonging to the monstrous humanoid or a humanoid type crosses the 40-ft. square.

If such a creature crosses the section, a black tentacles activates. The black tentacles have a CMB of +25 and, combined with the low ceiling, can grab aerial opponents. Creatures who are unaffected by the black tentacles, may fall into the 200-ft.-deep pit (Reflex DC 30 avoids fall); otherwise, their doom is assured. After the floor pivots away, it disconnects and falls, too, trapping all victims between the pit’s floor and the dropping section resulting in 40d6 damage.

The second layer of the trap is magical in origin, a wish spell combined with a nondetection effect (DC 31 CL check to overcome) guards against the following forms of movement: astral projection, blink, dimension door, ethereal jaunt, etherealness, gate, maze, plane shift, shadow walk, teleport, and similar spells and spell-like abilities. If any of the listed modes of movement are used to cross the section, the magic of the wish spell activates, ending such magical movement under the 40-ft. square section and causing the creatures to fall 200 ft. (Will DC 23 avoids). The walls of the pit can be scaled (Climb DC 30). The 40-ft. square section sealing the pit has hardness 8 and 60 hp.

Squishing Grab Trap CR 35

Type magical and mechanical; Perception DC 25; Disable Device DC 50
Trigger visual (true seeing); Reset repair
Effect spell effect (black tentacles, CMB +25); multiple targets (all targets within a 20-ft.-radius spread from center of the illuminated 40-ft. square section)
Effect squishing fall (40d6 damage, Reflex DC 30 avoids fall); multiple targets

Unwanted Destination Trap CR 19

Type magical; Perception DC 44; Disable Device DC 44
Trigger location; Reset automatic
Effect spell effect (nondetection, DC 31 CL check to overcome); multiple targets
Effect spell effect (wish, magical transport ends under the 40-ft. square section, Will DC 23 negates); multiple targets (all who magically attempt to cross the 40-ft. square section)
Effect 200-ft. pit (20d6 falling damage); multiple targets

Bypassing the Trap

Short of disabling either the squishing grab or unwanted destination trap, the easiest way to bypass the trap is to beat the true seeing element of the trap. The true seeing element has a +30 bonus to Perception. Before attempting such a feat of Stealth however, PCs might want to dispose of the four continual flames to give themselves some concealment.

GM Tip

Although the squishing grab trap clocks in at CR 35, I think it is an appropriate challenge for a 20th-level party and would award XP as if it were a CR 20 trap. Reducing the depth of the pit to 120 ft. results in 24d6 damage and is a CR 24 trap.

The unwanted destination trap Perception and Disable Device DCs have been increased by 10 points, I’ve added a +4 CR modifier to account for the increase.

(This post is Product Identity.)

2 thoughts on “Trapsmith: Epic Damage”

  1. Excellent trap. I find that complex, multi-stage traps are key for high-level encounters. My players generally check for and disable the first trap, then walk blindly into the second (though lately they’ve been wary about the second…they *do* learn!). Traps and constructs have been instrumental for high level play using the Eberron setting, where high-level challenges must be carefully considered in light of the environment. The Tarrasque doesn’t typically menace Breland, for example. But anyone can build a trap, and a reasonably accomplished artificer can do things that normally require a high-level spellcaster, or the trap was left over from an earlier, epic time.

  2. Personally, I am more of a one roll kind of guy to see if the players detect one or more traps. If the roll beats the DC to detect the traps, then the PC finds the traps, it is faster and more fair to the player as his character knows what to look for.

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