Inspired by classic modules such as Tomb of Horrors, Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth, Ghost Tower of Inverness, Into the Unknown and more obscure favorites such as Buffalo Castle and the Deathtrap Equalizer Dungeon.
Cover picture by the great Erol Otus; originally printed on the back jacket of Keep on the Borderlands.
The locals won't speak of it. Animals shun it. Adventurers share whispered rumors about it over the campfire's last embers. It is Castle Farkinwald. Built long ago by an intensely perverse wizard named Farkinwald the Fantastic, the castle that bears his name occupies a lonely mountain range in the middle of an uninhabited plain. Farkinwald never stirs from his lair giving rise to the notion every ten years or so that he’s finally passed away, leaving his piles of incalculable wealth unattended. Adventurers, braggarts and drunks, fired by visions of becoming as wealthy as sultans, invariably risk everything to explore the truth of these rumors, never to return. The only question that matters however is: will *you* dare to brave the forlorn fastnesses of Castle Farkinwald?
This dungeon is supposed to kill you. Don't be discouraged by dying early, often and gruesomely. It's not intended to be fair; sometimes you will be killed simply for taking the wrong Hindrances or Edges. That's the way Farkinwald rolls.
Castle Farkinwald is intended to work with whatever swords-and-sorcery setting you'd like to run. Feel free to adapt it as you need to so that it will fit within your campaign of choice.
Why even attempt a dungeon like this? Well, it was designed as a one-shot so if you're just looking for something ridiculous to play with your gaming buddies for a night, this'll give you some laughs. If you're of a more serious frame of mind, you can play this tournament style and see who amasses the most points by the end of the night. If your campaign allows for easy resurrection magic, you could place this dungeon in your world as a sort of "sports dungeon" that adventurers go through while fans watch via crystal balls and other divination magic.