Gorogan’s Maw

Photo credit to Pelgrane Press.


Seeing how the Dragon Empire is a half-finished world, I was very pleased about this little face etched into the bottom part of the map having some shred of a story to work with. I’m frightened to imagine what kind of fiend that Gorogan once was, but fear is more intriguing in a fantasy setting.

Gorogan’s Maw is more of a mountain than a demon in the 13th Age. The story is that Gorogan was a massive demon that was ripping his way up through the Abyss and almost got out into the world. Though the exact means are something of legend, he was petrified before his wrath could be unleashed. Lucky for us, the Dragon Empire is still standing and we now have some superbly amazing nightmare fuel for a campaign! Demons still come out of his cavernous mouth now and again and if the rumors are to be believed, the Diabolist makes frequent visits. Whether she’s amused or sad, well, that’s up for debate. Why don’t you ask her?

With this snippet of info about this interesting structure, we can start to build some pretty cool adventures with this geographic location as the focal point. The easiest route, or perhaps most obvious, is that Gorogan’s Maw, and the apparent body/corpse that exists underground, becomes one gigantic, hellish dungeon. The more difficult question to answer would be; Why are the players going there? There’s gotta be some adventure hooks we can pull from this. Due to the immense scope of this particular location, I would say that going inside of Gorogan would be a higher tier set of adventures. But then again, 13th Age is designed for heroes, is it not? It would be hard to swing it without nerfing the living (unliving? infernal? I’m not sure) hell out of many of the demons and devils, but if all you care about is the sheer epicness of it, go for it.

One thing to note, just to give the idea of Gorogan’s Maw a little more depth, Horizon is very close by. One of two things could be true:


Horizon from 13 True Ways

  1. Gorogan had some really good aim and was trying to pop up right at Horizon and dethrone the Archmage before anything else, knowing the rest of the Empire would crumble.
  2. Horizon used to be a floating city before the 13th Age, flying around and picking up dangerous artifacts from before the 1st Age (see the Horizon section of 13 True Ways for more info on that). Its current location was deemed appropriate by the late 12th Age’s Archmage (who died in the struggle to contain him) to plop down and watch over the ruin that is Gorogan’s Maw to keep the craziness that flows out under control.

In the grand scope of things it’s not entirely important, but they can be rather interesting to talk about with curious player characters that want to know more.

Adventure hooks for traveling to Gorogan’s Maw:

  1. Rumor has it that the Diabolist heads there every once in a while to treat with a Pit Fiend that now runs the inside of Gorogan as a demonic settlement. He rules his own with an iron fist but even the most brutal rulers could use a hand…
  2. The Crusader, the conqueror of hell holes, has summoned you and your friends. He has his eye on his next prize: Gorogan’s Maw. Clear it out because his troops are too busy, or else. The assault on the Abyss starts now.
  3. A scholar wants to give a good look at Gorogan’s Maw but it’s way too dangerous to go alone. Help him/her get there and study, he/she promises to dig away some of the rock to cut off a piece of Gorogan’s teeth. He/she knows a guy that can make a really cool spear head out of it.
  4. The Archmage has placed a ward over Gorogan’s Maw to make sure that no magic can ever overpower the spell that petrified him. Something is going wrong, the ward is failing.
  5. The Emperor would love nothing more than to make Gorogan’s Maw safe. It’d be a superb tourist destination and the bowl that is his mouth would make for a fantastic gladiatorial arena.
  6. If the rumors are to believed, there’s a dragon that lurks around Gorogan’s Maw that was twisted by the ambient demonic magic of the damned place. Someone might pay a hefty sum for that dragon’s head.

Well, that’s all I can muster up at this point to give people some fuel for an awesome campaign or adventure centered around Gorogan’s Maw. Let me know how you use it and how the players dealt with it!

Stay Metal \m/

4 Comments on “Gorogan’s Maw

      • I was toying with turning it into an adventure path, but killing an Icon was a bit much for a published thing.

        I’ll share the bullet points with your readers.

        1. Archmage learns location of the Lich King’s phylactery in obscure text in intro adventure.
        2. More scroll delving to find out the defenses, most are in areas held by other Icons.
        3. Gather the necessary stuff to defeat the ages-old defenses (many themed adventures).
        4. Plumb the depths of Gorogan’s corpse and shatter the phylactery.
        5. Party teleports to the Necropolis, and hold off waves of undead warriors while the Archmage breaks the final seal and destroys the LK at the cost of his own power.
        6. Lich King’s wards over the area fail, and massive monsters (kaiju, basically) pour in from the Iron Sea. The legion can push back most, but the biggest one is heading straight for a city the party cares about.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Many thanks for sharing the wealth. It makes for a good campaign, I think, that doesn’t really have any other adventures in the same universe. Bravo!


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