Adventure Hook: Followers of Acererak

An Alternative Adventure Hook for Tomb of Annihilation.

By Mark-Alexander Cross

You start Tomb of Annihilation by meeting a dying Syndra Silvane in Baldur’s Gate, who teleports you right away to Port Nyanzaru in Chult where the adventure begins.

Where is the RP investment and what is the point in starting in Baldur’s Gate?

This adventure hook will allow you to have some fun in the famous city, and earn early experience points for your players.

The “Ye Old Plot & Hook” Tavern
The game begins at this former fisherman’s haunt near the docks, turned into a thriving inn for travelling adventurers and vagabonds.

  • Explain to the players the rumours of the Death Curse and how it is the talk of
    the tavern.
  • Use the atmosphere of the place to gauge how serious the situation is, and set
    the tone of the game you want to play.

The inn itself is a basement level tavern with no first floor, and from a birds eye view, is 50 feet wide and 30 feet long, with a central entry stairway that rises up 10 feet.

Set out the tavern as you see fit for the upcoming encounter.

Acererak’s Follwers: Led by Charrum Lightsbane
The demilich Acererak has gathered many followers over the years, all in awe of his power. Acererak cares not for any of them and laughs in the folly of their attempts.

Charrum Lightsbane (NE Forrest Gnome Wizard) is one such follower:

Ideal: Power and approval, by any means necessary.
Bond: Lord Acererak is my life and I will do anything for him.
Flaw: I shall be Lord Acererak’s protege.

To try and appease his master, Charrum will attack the Ye Olde Plot & Hook with fellow fanatics (use Cultists or Scouts). Their numbers will match the number of the party, and strike after Charrum launches a fireball spell into the corner of the room, away from the characters. His goal is to kill what Acererak hates the most, adventurers, and feed them to the soulmonger.

Have Charrum leave right after the fireball and run for the port, avoiding the Flaming Fist who enforce law in the city and board a boat for Chult. Give the players an enemy to chase and an RP reason to go to Chult.

Additional Content

From this point out, you can introduce Syndra Silvane and have her offer the characters a chance for payback if they do something for her (saving her). Or use the Flaming Fist, who also have a presence in Chult, to go after the criminal that just attacked their town. Maybe the players will directly chase after Charrum with another docked ship and have them encounter the Dragon Turtle, Aremag, in the bay of Chult.

This hook can transition nicely into any of the characters or factions from the source book.

Hopefully a bit more exciting than just meeting a dying woman.
Enjoy the game and play on.

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