Village Backdrop: Arcmoor (5e)
A 5e Compatible GM's Resource by Fabian Fehrs
For much of its life, the village of Arcmoor was a sleepy place, far removed from the doings of heroes, kings and warlords. All that changed, however, when an orcish horde was destroyed near the village by the hero Therald Arcmoor. Therald died at the moment of his greatest triumph, and his death—strangely—heralded great change in the village. A shrine raised in his honour has grown increasingly popular of late and Arcmoor is slowly being transformed from a sleepy backwater into a popular destination for pilgrims, visiting warriors and the like.
Recent sightings of two dragons, and their depredations, have cast a pall over the village. The fearsome pair apparently dwell somewhere in the nearby Tuskwood, and the villagers fear the dragons will bring economic (or actual) ruin down upon the village. Villagers fear adventurers flocking to the village could make the situation worse; thus far, the dragons have stayed away from Arcmoor proper but if the heroes fail to slay the scaly beasts the pair could destroy the village in retaliation. Thus, Arcmoor’s future hangs in the balance.
Most of the village comprises normal homes. A few locations, however, are of interest to adventurers.
- Arcmoor Shrine: This small temple on a hill outside Arcmoor features a somewhat weathered stone statue of Therald Arcmoor (depicted as a human) in front of the building. A mural depicting the hero’s deeds dominates the interior. The shrine serves as the village’s main place of worship.
- Graveyard: Arcmoor’s graveyard lies in the shrine’s shadow and looks well tended. It comprises simple graves with headstones and the gravedigger’s home. Currently, the black-hearted Nojus Makalis serves as the village’s gravedigger, but the Braal worshipper has a deeper purpose at the village.
- Old Battlefield: The site where the orc horde was vanquished many years ago lies in the hills east of the village. People still find remnants of rusted weapons, other rotting, broken gear and skeletal remains scattered about the area. Strange mists and fogs often cloak the battlefield and persistent rumours describe the place as haunted.
- The Ark: Arcmoor’s inn is one of the few two-storied buildings in Arcmoor. As a result of Celiri Bold’s attempts to profit from the pilgrims, room prices are 50% higher than standard. The Ark is the centre of the village’s social scene and often busy in the evenings.
- Zich’s General Goods: The village shop sells typical fare for a rural shop and may have a few unusual items lying around—some plucked from the old battlefield and some pulled from the various cairns lurking under the Tuskwood’s boughs.
This is an expanded look at the village of Arcmoor which first appeared in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game compatible adventure Dwellers Amid Bones Collector's Edition.
Village Backdrops are short, richly detailed supplements that each present a single village ready to insert into almost any home campaign. Perfect for use as a waystop on the road to adventure, as an adventure site themselves or as a PC’s home, Village Backdrop present the details so the busy GM can focus on crafting exciting, compelling adventures.
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