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D&D 3E
power source 
13th-Jan-2004 05:17 pm
i've designed a dungeon for 3rd level pc's. it's an abandoned dwarven mine that's been flooded. they need to activate the ancient (but still functional) dwarven pumps to drain the mine to get to the lower levels. i can't think of a good power source for the pump. i need it to be something dwarvish, and portable. something that's not going to thrwo the game. i don't know, i should be able to think of someting but i'm at an impasse. i can't think of anything i like.

some unknown ore? a wand of lighting? magic coins?

i don't know.
13th-Jan-2004 02:56 pm (UTC)
Water: big water wheel that turns the screws that run the pumps deep below, the players have to fix whatever part has broken.

Steam: They have to relight the forges and get the water flowing again to generate steam to power the machines that do the pumps. Perhaps the forges need fuel, coal or wood, etc. and need to be kept stoked to keep running, thus giving the players a time limit on how long the lower levels are drained

Magic: The pumps are powered by magic, the party needs to cast the right spells, enchant an item, repair a damaged magic symbol, whatnot

Frozboz: basically magic again, but this time it is an item they need to retrieve and install, a gem, some ore, whatnot

Physical Labor: The pumps were powered by captured orcs, hard working dwarf pump pumpers, cave bears, or some other sort of physical effort. Make the party make strength and endurance checks to run the pumps for a while, then give them a limited time period to explore while the pumped out areas fill up again. Thus they have time pressure to move forward and find the next pump mechanism so they can keep the water level down.

13th-Jan-2004 02:58 pm (UTC)
You could set up a gear/shelf system where a filled syphoned bucket (think top-half of an hourglass) with coal, powder, sand, (etc) would slowly pour the material onto a gear/turbine and off into a lower bucket which would cause it to turn and power the pumps. To get them to figure it out, there could be a large pile of sand with some shovels nearby and some residual sand in the collector bucket.
13th-Jan-2004 03:08 pm (UTC)
A fist size gem. That is completely dwarven made, hence it is not real and worthless.

Also perhaps something from spelljammer. They had forges that powered their spellljammer ships that basically ate magic items. Put in a magic item, get power etc.... its kind of devious.
13th-Jan-2004 04:47 pm (UTC)
My favored approach is a long-forgotten bound elemental (in this case, a fire or earth elemental). Long ago Dwarven spellcasters made a pact with the creature (or simply enslaved it, depending on the ethos of the Dwarves in question), but since the mine was abandoned, no one has kept up the Dwarven end of the bargain (or fed it, gave it orders, etc.) and it's lain dormant, trapped in its chamber and tied to the mine. The heroes will likely have to offer it freedom in return for it providing power to the pumps this one last time, so there are unlikely to be balance issues (as there would be with wands or ore that falls into the PCs' hands) or the railroading aspect of the magical item of immence power being useless to the PCs except for the purpose of draining the mines.

Sure, the elemental isn't portable, per se, but it is mobile. Hopefully that's good enough.
14th-Jan-2004 06:03 am (UTC)
I like this idea, but i also like the other idea someone else had about a series od pumps, and a race against time to find the next one. maybe i can combine the two.

13th-Jan-2004 07:43 pm (UTC)
Are you going to make this available for anyone to use? I'd really REALLY like to look at it because I'm going to need something like this for my campaign in the next couple of months.

If you are, could you e-mail it to me at annakie@yahoo.com? I'd really appreciate it bunches! :)
14th-Jan-2004 06:09 am (UTC)
this is the first dungeon i've designed in a long time and i'm not real proud of it, but i'll post a copy if you want. it takes place in a world where there was once one moon that split into four, it screwed with the tides and pulled the ocean a whole lot closer to the mine than it used to be, right up to its doorstep, so to speak. the first level is only flooded at high tide, and the water is only about a foot deep. the characters have to defeat the kuo-toa who've taken over the first level, along with their kappa and tako servants (kapa and tako from OE). they have to figure out how to work the mechanism to close the front gate to keep more water from getting in, then activate the pumps to get the water in the lower levels out.
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