Deals in Daylight | 5e Adventure Ideas
By David J. Morand
Do you sometimes find it challenging to think up the next big adventure for your 5e campaign? Let us help with these five free 5e adventure ideas!
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Deals in Daylight
Use any of the adventure ideas below to flesh out complete adventures for your game, customizing elements as desired to fit the playstyle of you and your players. The suggested tier indicates the levels the adventure is recommended for.
Tier One (levels 1-4) – Entrepreneurial Spirit
Creatures. This adventure features the following creatures: goblin, hobgoblin.
Premise. Increased attacks on traveling caravans are happening in broad daylight. The caravans are spirited away by unruly goblins. Oddly, the goblins leave the caravanners alive and only steal the goods, animals, and wagons. These particular goblins are under the leadership of Mauler, an outcast hobgoblin with visions of grandiosity. Mauler is gathering caravans and the associated pack animals to create his merchant outfit and has taken the idea of cut-throat business to heart.
Plot Hook. The party is hired as protection for a caravan. On their outing, they encounter the goblins working for Mauler and have an opportunity to trace the goblins back to their hobgoblin leader.
Tier One (levels 1-4) – Entrepreneurial Spirit
It’s a Dog-Eat-Dog World
Creatures. This adventure features the following creatures: gnoll, hyena.
Premise. Livestock has begun to go missing from local farms. There is no evidence of blood or dismemberment, but numerous tracks exist. The tracks are canine in origin and switch between two-foot and four-footed assailants. Two tribes of gnolls have settled into a contest with one another. Each is trying to steal more livestock than the other at the end of the contest; they plan to have a massive feast.
Plot Hook. While staying at an inn, the party becomes aware of missing livestock. Either their horses are stolen or some horses from the inn where they are staying. The innkeeper requests their aid, saying there has been more monster activity in the area as of late.
Tier Two (levels 5-10) – Giant Relations
What’s Ettin You?
Creatures. This adventure features the following creatures: ettin, orc.
Premise. An orc encampment employs two ettins as their defense. However, the ettins are envious and wary of one another, which often causes more arguments than benefits for the orcs. They have managed to strike an uneasy peace between the two ettins, but both giants have a penchant for playing pranks and taking malicious action against each other. Now, one of the ettins has left camp and refuses to return without compensation or while the other ettin remains in camp.
Plot Hook. The party stumbles upon a strange conversation between an orc and an ettin. The orc pleads with the ettin to return to camp and promises an extra portion of food. The ettin, however, refuses unless the orc gets rid of the other ettin back in camp. The party is presented with an opportunity by the orc to convince the ettin to return to camp. The ettin establishes his terms again and asks the party to remove the other ettin but doing so could be complicated if they cannot get into the camp amicably.
Tier Three (levels 11-16) – Be Careful what You Wish For
To Djinni or to Efreeti?
Creatures. This adventure features the following creatures: air elemental, djinni, efreeti, fire elemental.
Premise. A scourge of storms has wracked the land. Winds at high speeds tearing at trees, forest fires uncontrolled, rivers rising to flood levels, and the earth shaking violently. Something has upset the balance of nature, and the elements are affected. Two elementals are battling over the land; a Djinni and an Efreeti are contending to slay one another. Fire elementals and air elementals rage across the lands fighting in the grand army of the two elemental lords. Either the djinni or the efreeti would be happy to grant a boon to see the other end.
Plot Hook. The weather changes violently from cacophonous thunderstorms to raging summer heat. The party cannot escape the weather nor the pleas for help from every passerby and village they see.
Tier Four (levels 17-20) - Statuesque
Iron You Sure?
Creatures. This adventure features the following creatures: gargoyle, iron golem, stone golem.
Premise. An ancient temple has stood untouched for centuries. Massive iron-bound doors give way to crenulated towers and parapets. This temple appears more as a fortress than a simple place of worship. Colossal stone statues and reliefs decorate this castle. Built by an artificer of old, this temple is a herald to long-forgotten gods and dark magic. Every statue is either a gargoyle, stone golem, or iron golem set to protect the riches within the structure.
Plot Hook. Rumors of an impenetrable fortress with untold riches have circulated around the town for years. Adventurers have taken it upon themselves to assault the structure, but none ever return. Rumors of its wealth and the prestige for besting the fortress are all that any glory-seeking adventurer needs to take on the challenge.
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