XDMC #7 : Design a Cult!

The Eight Sided Star

Twenty years ago the fishing town of Nirdan suffered a terrible curse. For unknown reasons, the nets began to return empty. Worse yet two ships were sunk but giant sea monsters. Despair fell over the town. Nate Doluge arrived early one morning to see a ship captain surrounded by his crew. The men had no interest in putting their lives at risk for no gain. Nate pushed his way up to the captain. "I will join you," he shouted to the crowd. "Who are you demanded the crowd. "I am Nate Doluge, servant of Proteroct," responded the young man. The response confused the crowd as no one had heard of Proteroct. Nate shook his head and began to explain what came before. Proteroct existed before all. He created the great ocean before slumbering. When he awoke he found others had interfered with his water. Land pushed asides the ocean separating it and capturing water in rivers and lakes. He was not pleased. He promised to flood the world and restore his order. The faithful of Proteroct seek to prepare others for the coming flood. The myth did little to interest the sailors but Nate promised that Proteroct's blessing would protect the ship and ensure a great catch. With nothing to lose several sailors agreed to try once more.

The ship returned with a bounty of fish. Soon the octagram symbol of Proteroct graced several vessels. Those who continued to worship other gods found their nets empty. Donations for Proteroct showered Nate. He constructed a new temple in the town. Everything progressed well for his church until recently when he received the Proteroct's blessing and transformed into an octopoda creature. The transformation occurred during a sermon and frightened the followers. He tried to explain the gift but no one listened. The church was shutdown.

The town once again suffered except for the mayor. While most ship once again found their nets empty, the mayor's ships continued to catch plenty of fish. Unrest has begun growing with the situation. The mayor has banned the worship of Proteroct. Recently the mayor has been wearing bulkier clothing. Rumor suggests it is to hide the tentacles on his back. Late night messengers have been seen leaving the mayor's residence.

Captain Pike, the captain first helped by Nate, has been outspoken against the mayor. While Nate's transformation concerns him, he has no problem with followers of Proteroct.

The Truth

Nate engineered the crisis by using the Repeal Animals ritual on the nets of fishermen. He truly believes that Proteroctopod's flood is coming and those not saved will suffer. Knowing that the giant octopus image of Proteroctopod is feared, he shortens the name to not be indicative of the octopus and describes he as assuming the shape of numerous sea creatures. He will do whatever is necessary to bring others to the faith.

After losing control in Nirdan, Nate has been working to replace the mayor with a more amenable ruler. A small number of townfolk remain followers of Proteroctopod but hide the practice. Captain Pike remains a staunch follower of Proteroctopod but has taken more moderate stance while the mayor is framed as a supporter of Nate. They intend to cause a rebellion and replace the mayor.


Arriving in town the players are approached by Captain Pike or another citizen. The person informs them of the town's woes. Hearing of tales of the great adventurers, the party is asked to investigate the mayor's late night messengers.

Following the messenger leads to a cave by the seaside. The passage slopes downward and turns to the left. The cavern appears man-made but not recently. As the party reaches the corridor's end they see a large room. An altar sits on the opposite end of the room. The messenger is waiting while Nate, the octopoda cleric reads the message. Three sahaugin stand about the room.

This encounter includes the following creatures.
1 Nate Doluge, octopoda human cleric (level 11 controller)
3 Sahaugin Raiders (level 9 soldier) [Level up the level 6 sahaugin raiders in the Monster Manual]
1 Human Lackey (level 7 minion)

The room also contains a Flood Trap.

Nate Doluge Level 11 Elite Controller (Leader)
Medium natural humanoid (aquatic) XP 1,200

Initiative +5 Senses Perception +8; darkvision
HP 268; Bloodied 134
AC 25; Fortitude 22, Reflex 22, Will 25
Speed 6, swim 6
Spear see PHB
see PHB
Righteous Brand see PHB
see PHB
Awe Strike see PHB
see PHB
Command see PHB
see PHB
Divine Power see PHB
see PHB
Knights of Unyielding Valor see PHB
see PHB
Divine Aid see PHB
see PHB
Healing Word see PHB
see PHB
Melee; Tentacles (minor; at-will)
Reach 4; +14 vs. Reflex; 2d8 + Strength modifier and target is grabbed (until escape). While a target is grabbed, the octopoda can act normally but cannot make another tentacles attack.
Melee; Crush (minor 1/round; at-will)
Requires grabbed target; +14 vs. Fortitude; 2d10 + Strength modifier.
Close; Ink Spray (minor; encounter)
Requires being underwater; close burst 2; this creates an ink cloud until the end of the octopoda's next turn. The cloud blocks line of sight for everyone except the octopoda.
Alignment Evil Languages Common
Str 13 (+6) Dex 11 (+5) Wis 17 (+8)
Con 14 (+7) Int 14 (+7) Cha 19 (+9)
Equipment hide armor, spear

Nate Doluge's Tactics
Nate will try to use Knights of Unyielding Valor to trap the party in the room. He will then activate the flood trap. A small water filled tunnel sits being the altar, Nate will try to escape before the party defeats him.

Flood Trap
Hazard: When triggered the room starts filling with water.
Effect: The room begins filling with water. On the third turn after being triggered, all squares are considered difficult terrain. On the sixth turn, room use aquatic combat rules from DMG and small creatures are no longer breathe without swimming. On the eighth turn, everyone is underwater and can no longer breathe.


A successful Religion check can recall the following information.

DC 25: Proteroctopod is a sea god that threatens to flood the world.

DC 30: Proteroctopod is not a sea god but is actually a primordial.


Faithful servants of Proteroctopod are transformed into an octopoda creature. Their head bulges a little and eight tentacles grow from their back.

Prerequisites: Humanoid, Level 11

Octopoda Elite Controller
Humanoid (aquatic) XP Elite
Senses darkvision
Defenses +2 Reflex, +2 Will
Saving Throws +2
Action Points 1
HP +8 per level + Constitution score
Melee; Tentacles (minor; at-will)
Reach 4; Level + 3 vs. Reflex; 2d8 + Strength modifier and target is grabbed (until escape). While a target is grabbed, the octopoda can act normally but cannot make another tentacles attack. Increase this extra damage to 3d8 at 21st level.
Melee; Crush (minor 1/round; at-will)
Requires grabbed target; Level + 3 vs. Fortitude; 2d10 + Strength modifier. Increase this extra damage to 3d10 at 21st level.
Close; Ink Spray (minor; encounter)
Requires being underwater; close burst 2; this creates an ink cloud until the end of the octopoda's next turn. The cloud blocks line of sight for everyone except the octopoda.
The creature gains a swim speed of 8.

Heroic Feats

Water of Life [Divinity]
Prerequisite: Channel divinity class feature, must worship Proteroctopod
Benefit: You can invoke the power of your deity to use Water of Life.

Water of Life; Feat Power
The waters that nourish Proteroctopod also nourish believers
Encounter * Divine
Minor Action; Personal
Effect: Until the end of the encounter or for 5 minutes, you can breathe and speak underwater.
Special: You must take the Water of Life feat to use this power


Repeal Animals
Dogs and other pets move away from the staff carried by the wizard.
Level: 3; Component Cost: 25 gp
Category: Warding; Market Price: 125 gp
Time: 10 minutes; Key Skill: Nature
Duration: Special

The target object becomes unpleasant to animals. Most will avoid the object. Particular large and aggressive creatures may try to destroy the object.

Check ResultDuration
9 or lower 3 days
10-19 1 week
20-29 2 weeks
30 or more 1 month

Optional Elements
2. Cultic worship causes a physical transformation in some of its members
4. If a player character cleric joins the cult, they will gain access to a unique Channel Divinity feat detailed in the entry.
7. The cult knows a unique ritual described in the entry.