Volcano !!


Shackled City Adventure Path


Alright guys, I need some help and ideas.

So I am DMing the Shackled City campaign, we just finished chapter 10.

For those who don't know the campaign that's how it goes :

The bad guys want to open a portal to the abyss, but they need to a lot of power to power their portal opening artefact, so they made a ritual to awaken the volcano that's under the main city.

So now that the city has been evacuated, the heroes need to stop that portal because if the portal to the abyss is permanently open, it won't matter how far the evacuation goes.

But the bad guy lair where the artefact is in the middle of said volcano. The fact that the artefact is pumping the volcano's power keeps the irruption in check.

But things go sour as first, in the first 10 minutes, their teleporting wizard and main source of knowledeges gets desintegrated by a pyroclastic dragon and then their back-up source of knowledge gets level drained by a nasty trap (7 negative levels total).

So when they get to the artifact, spent, wounded, bleeding, tired (because it's time issue, no sleep permitted if they want to make it in time!) they realize that without knowledge guy they have no idea if there's a failsafe or safe way to stop the whole thing. So they grab the adamantine axes they found and destroy said artefact by chopping it to pieces.

This releases the full power of the volcano and without any means of teleporting (since wizard was desintegrated and didnt prepare any scrolls of teleport) well... they succeeded in preventing the portal from opening but all died in the process (woot !)

Now, the campaign won't stop here, but one thing I am curious and don't know where to start is... how could I estimate the damage, lava, etc... a Volcano would do ? the city is obviously gone, but what of the surroundings ? how would you gauge this ?

Worst comes to worst I hope the little summary entertained you :)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

(... I'm flagging this to be moved to the SCap forum ...)

If the SCap book/magazine installments are silent on the issue of actual volcanic eruption beneath Cauldron (I'm AFB with regard to my SCap material), then there are some useful sections of information in the DMG II (3.5). The section on Lava starts on p. 53, and Burning Buildings start on p. 48. The Sandstorm sourcebook has a few entries which could be of use (Hot Ash and Mud floors on p. 32, Geysers on p. 34, and Lava Pools and Lakes on p. 34.).

Since you posted in the 3.5 section of the forums, I assume that you are not interested in any relevant Pathfinder references.

I believe that the city itself would be a total write-off, although archaeologists hundreds of years later might be able to excavate some things of interest. (But that's mostly anything that was on the outside of the caldera, unless major magic or complete fire immunity is involved. Pompeii was at the bottom of the mountain where Vesuvius was, as was Herculaneum. The first was covered with volcanic ash, the second with mud.)

As for the events and actions of your own group of players ... what a way to go! The only way that they're coming back from that is if someone casts True Resurrection on them all, or multiple Wishes come into play. Or ye olde deus ex machina. :)


hah :)

I may have not used the right forum if so I'm sorry lol, but at the same time, although it happened in SCAP, I am looking for ideas of the damage the volcano would do which could be very general instead of campaign specific.

Oh most of those characters are not coming back lol, only 2 are maybe coming back just because he has a power that when he dies his body gets teleported (still dead) somewhere else, and he took the ashes of the desintegrated wizard with him. So they'll be the core of the next party that will keep on going.

I will look into Vesuvius, hopefully I'll get info like how far the ash went, how long the eruption last, etc....

A good way to start my search :)

It's mainly to know how the geography would be affected to then describe : that's the landscape now.


following your idea I'm looking into mount St-helen, I might just copy the description, seems pretty specific on how long the eruption goes for, up to where the ash went, etc... what do you guys think ?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Actually, there is some info on volcanoes, lava, poisonous gases, pyroclastic flows, etc. on the Pathfinder SRD on here on Paizo's own site. Just check under the Gamemastery Guide (under Disasters).


I would say that not only is Cauldron destroyed, but so are the surrounding farmlands. The average blast radius of a volcano is 20 miles. You can use that to determine what happens to Kingfisher Hollow, Redgorge, Hollowsky, and Liduton (that's its original name, I can't remember it's 'necropolis' name).

Since Surabar Spellmason created the obsidian walls, as an interesting ruins remnant of Cauldron, I suggest that the walls remain intact, completely undamaged by the blast. Especially since obsidian is a volcanic rock and Spellmason was an elementalist archmage.


Mykull wrote:

I would say that not only is Cauldron destroyed, but so are the surrounding farmlands. The average blast radius of a volcano is 20 miles. You can use that to determine what happens to Kingfisher Hollow, Redgorge, Hollowsky, and Liduton (that's its original name, I can't remember it's 'necropolis' name).

Since Surabar Spellmason created the obsidian walls, as an interesting ruins remnant of Cauldron, I suggest that the walls remain intact, completely undamaged by the blast. Especially since obsidian is a volcanic rock and Spellmason was an elementalist archmage.

I very much like your ideas, thanks for the pointers, I guess my first order of business would be to calculate how far the townsfolk were able to go !!


from having played and beaten this adventure I can only suggest the answer to your question about the townsfolk would be Not far enough.

I'm pretty sure that every resident of cauldron either died in the blast or choked to death on the smoke and ash. I'm fairly certain that the smoke and ash will impact life even as far away as the coastal city, can't remember the name but it has a major temple to wee-jas in it and the town was founded in honor of her priestess.

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