Wednesday, November 18, 2009

[Thundarr Thursday] Dangerous Encounter: Den of the Sleeping Demon

While travelling through a large canyon, the PCs should spy some large bird-like creatures circling overhead. Closer examination (or mutations that heighten vision) will reveal that these are humans with artificial wings gliding on the wind currents. While admiring these glider-people, the party sees stun beams firing at them from up ahead. The glider-people are under attack!

If the PCs decide to investigate where the beams came from, they find a human and several cat-like mutants firing at them from an Ancient children's playground. Judag and nine of his feloid mutants (new creature, click here for a description) are firing at the glider-people, trying to bring them crashing to the ground. When the PCs arrive, They'll see that one of the glider people has already landed roughly and has been captured. Freeing the captive and putting a stop to Judag's attack should be a priority of the PCs.

(NOTE: Stats for Judag are not included in this adventure. The Mutant Lord can stat him up as a rather strong and intelligent pure strain human without mutations, if so desired. Keep in mind that he's well-armed and he always keeps his feloid army well between himself and the PCs.)

Feloids (9) (AL C, MV 150’ (50’), AC 6, HD 8, #AT 1 (stun pistol), DG stun, SV L7, ML 8, mutations: none)

When the battle begins to turn against Judag, he shall beat a hasty retreat, causing some calamity to act as a diversion while he escapes. (In the show, he fired a stun pistol at a nearby rock outcropping, starting an avalanche. He escaped while everyone tried to get out of the way of the tumbling boulders.)

Upon freeing the captive, he will explain that his name is Torg and that he is the leader of the glider-people. He invites the party back to his village located on a cliffside as his way of thanking them for their help. While the party rests and are fed by the grateful villagers, Torg explains why Judag has been attacking his people:

"Once, Judag was in bondage to a wizard, but he made a daring escape. Rather than battle their evil, however, Judag has vowed to become a wizard. Now he's searching the canyon for the den of the Sleeping Demon. According to the legend, whoever wakes the Demon will be granted magical powers, and Judag believes it is true."

The legend of the Sleeping Demon and the dangers it presents are very well known in the world of Thundarr, so trying to stop Judag from finding, waking, and controlling the demon should be of utmost importance. Torg says that his scouts saw Judag and his minions heading west along the canyon floor. The walls of the canyon are too steep to go down on foot, by horseback, or by vehicle, so Torg offers the use of his gliders to any PC brave enough to try. (The Mutant Lord should not place the PCs in danger - play this "flight to the floor of the canyon" for comedy relief. Perhaps an airborne foe could create some tension as the PCs fly down to the surface.)

Once the PCs reach the canyon floor and proceed to the west, they'll come across an Ancient abandoned hospital. Lights flicker from one of the windows on the upper floor. It is here that they'll find Judag. When the PCs enter the hospital, they'll be attacked by four devil rats (new creature, click here for a description) that have made the hospital lobby their lair.

Devil Rats (4) (AL C, MV 120’ (40’), AC 6, HD 3, #AT 1 (bite or claw), DG 1d8 or 1d6, SV L2, ML 6, mutations: gigantism, natural armor, vision impairment (severe light sensitivity))

Once the rats have been dealt with, the PCs are free to get to the top floor of the hospital any way they wish. There, in a large laboratory, Judag and his feloid minions stand over a glass case with a large creature within. In Judag's hand is a book. "The secret of life is within this Ancient tome!" he shouts, lifting a copy of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. At that moment, one of the feloids flips a switch on a nearby console and electricity courses through the case. With a screech, the Sleeping Demon (new creature, click here for a description) explodes through the glass. The feloids run for their lives. Judag steps before the creature and demands that it bow before its master. It doesn't. It leaps upon him, killing him. It then turns to the PCs, hunger flashing in its eyes.

The Sleeping Demon (1) (AL C, MV 90’ (30’); flying 240' (80'), AC 3, HD 13, #AT 3 (2 claws, 1 bite), DG 1d10, 1d10, 1d12, SV L11, ML 11, mutations: complete wing development)

If the PCs don't defeat the Demon right now or if it escapes from the hospital, it flies to Torg's village, where it will begin feeding. The PCs must put a stop to the creature's rampage before it begins!

NOTE: This adventure and its creatures were inspired by the episode "Den of the Sleeping Demon" from the classic Ruby-Spears post-apocalyptic cartoon "Thundarr the Barbarian." Obviously some liberties needed to be taken with the original episode's plotline, but I tried to stay as true as I could to the feel of the show. Stay tuned each week for "Thundarr Thursday!"


  1. I rarely regret not having a television when I was growing up, but these Thundarr posts are making me wish I had seen the show. Was it ever released on DVD?

    I love the idea of a tribe with mechanical gliders, I will probably steal that.

    Good stuff

  2. Sadly the show isn't available on DVD (although the fans have been begging for an official set for years). However, Cartoon Network's classic toon network Boomerang runs episodes of Thundarr late at night. It is fairly easy to get a full set of episodes this way. Or just go to Google and type in THUNDARR DVD and look at all of the bootlegs out there. ;)