Temple of 1000 Swords

This module's title actually underplays the number of swords present in it's temple. The core conceit at the heart of this adventure is a magical forge that can turn anything it touches into a sword. This means this a temple of countless swords, swords in heaps, flowing out of the temple and steadily flowing into the surrounding environment.

This one idea (a surreal take on the fallen Decanter of Endless Water concept) drives everything else described in the module. From a game design point of view you just have to be envious as virtually everything else flows from the question "what would happen if there was a device that turns everything into swords?".

There is actually more content in the adventure but it just kind of naturally follows from the core concept.

An avatar of the god of swords is present because this is a temple of limitless swords. The presence of the god and countless swords engenders a violent conflict between the inhabitants of the caves surrounding the temple.

The god has cursed a knight who killed the temple priest to make swords at the forge until his blood debt is paid.

The presence of a god capable of granting wishes and the potential to acquire a manner of strange and unique swords provides the incentive for adventurers to enter the temple despite the dangers.

Tarot themes also run through the adventure, a tower of swords, a nod towards the rod of seven parts in the form of the Nine of Swords, the Emperor and Empress of Swords, a deceased Hierophant. The secondary theme sits comfortable under the swords one and provides an interesting structure that helps bind the whole thing together and makes it feel cohesive.

Overall on the first reading this is a hugely impressive piece of work. It genuinely has that feel of early Dungeon and Dragons adventures, it is surreal rather than gonzo but it fulfils a modern sense of cohesiveness and design.

The PDF is also available on Itch.

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