Wavestone Keep

By Kevin Conyers
Level 3

Fear the waves, the tides and the sea itself! A fearsome tower of stone roams the oceans, delivering its deadly cargo of lizardmen wherever it happens to land!


Eight pages. Nine rooms, all on two pages. Which could have been one, honestly.

Look at that tagline. Fear the waves, the tides, the sea itself! A fearsome tower of stone! Note: this adventure doesn’t even have a tower, that’s how AWESOEM it is!. The existence of waves, tides and sea must be extrapolated, allowing the DM to put a bunch of extra time and effort in things, allowing them to exercise their brain muscle!

Seriously, no tower. A cave complex, but no tower. Note the adventure tidal: Wavestone Keep. No keep. At all. Just caves. How’s that for marketing oomph?! Yeah baby, it’s open ended, allowing the DM to fill in the gaps!

How about a bunch of rooms with lizard men and kobolds who just wait in side to die, not responding to anything? You got it! Wave after wave of them, where “wave” is defined as the waves in the tagline, I guess? It’s too complex for a mere plebe like myself to understand.

Like, what the fuck am I supposed to say about this thing? “Crudely carved room, stone protrusions serve as beds.” Woaaah! I’m inspired! How about the 2d10 lizard men that are inside? You know it baby! There’s a challenge for you! Your brain just SPRINGS in to action when something like this pops across the page. “Natural cave with a carefully cleaned floor?” Count me in! My players will DROOL with anticipation at that! And the loot! That room contains AT LEAST 4000gp worth of treasure, allowing the DM to just fill everything in on their own without having to worry about a designer filling it in for them!

Wait, wait, back to the 2d10 lizard men! EVERY room is like that, with a variable number of monsters/guards. How’s that for sticking it to man?1 No need to actually put itin, it could be 1 or it could be 10! Masterful game design!

How about that wandering table with giant rates and bats on it?! You remember that old marketing line that D&D was limited only by your imagination? Rubbish! This is clearly not limited by imagination AT ALL, and has NOTHING to do with imagination! The marketing lies, this is the real deal, right here!

“Crumbly natural cabe, stone floor littered with detritus.” Thrill at that terse description motherfuckers! Fuck your evocative writing! This adventure don’t need it! 

Room after room like this. All nine of them. With variable monsters. With a short description tat says nothing. With DM text that elaborates on nothing but what there is to stab. Sadly, there’s no details on how many egg clusters there are on the nesting room, or what lizard men eggs taste like. 

A boy can dream.

I find my recent run of adventures deplorable and they make me want to giv eup on life. Not kill myself. Just stare at the screen, numbly. So, we gonna do something bout that.

Ok fuckers, you made it this far. Welcome to the next Bryce Lynch adventure design contest. There’s only one prize. $100. And you get a handwritten card from me calling you not a fucking idiot. Unless it turns out you are one. 

You get nine fucking rooms and eight fucking pages. And PLEASE don’t feel the need to use all eight pages. Pretty please?  Entries must be received by March 15th. The title has to be Wavestone Keep, but you can’t use that name, just call it something like that. And the marketing blurb has to be “Fear the waves, the tides and the sea itself! A fearsome tower of stone roams the oceans, delivering its deadly cargo of lizardmen wherever it happens to land!” But, again, you can’t use that wording, come up with the same fucking thing though. Oh, and buy a copy of this shit-fest as inspiration. bryce0lynch@gmail.com That’s a zero and not an o in there.

This is $1 at DriveThru.


This entry was posted in 2 out of 10, 5e, Adventurers League, Do Not Buy Ever, Dungeon Magazine, Dungeons & Dragons Adventure Review, God Effort, Level 0, Level 1, Level 12, Level 2, Level 3, Level 4, Level 5, Level 6, Level 8, Level 9, Millions and Millions of its Babies, My Life is a Living Fucking Hell, Pathfinder, Reviews, SciFi, The Worst EVAR?, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

69 Responses to Wavestone Keep

  1. Anonymous says:

    These filters lol

  2. Anonymous says:


    Welcome to the next Bryce Lynch adventure design contest. There’s only one prize. $100.



  3. Anonymous says:

    ‘Entries must be received by March 15th.’

    • gruszczy says:

      Can you have a meaningful exploration in only 9 rooms? 8 pages sure, but only 9 rooms?

      • Grützi says:


        1 – The Keep Room
        A small passage opens up into a vast cavern of seemingly natural origin, its walls vanishing in the distance. A few feet away from the entrance grass begins to grow, in the far off distance one can see a forest and hear the rushing of water. Up above the illusion of a clear sky with a scorching sun shimmers on the caves ceiling.
        Some kind of keep can be seen sitting on a rough hill to the east.
        !!DM NOTE: Insert B2 here!!

        Repeat for 8 other rooms.

        But seriously… it can be quite interesting to pack a whole adventure with exploration and all in 9 rooms, though I’m pretty sure it can be done.

      • Beoric says:

        One of the rooms could be really big…

  4. Reason says:

    You’d need to make he corridors and connections interesting & featured to skirt around the limited # of rooms. That’s one way to do it.

    Only 9 rooms but no limited was placed on the waves, the tides, the sea itself… Plenty of interest there. Especially as it allows swimming things to exit & then re-enter the tower at different heighs/places… I could see some creatures that prefer to stay in the rooms & others that quickly make for the sea to take advantage of their superior movement in the water…

  5. samurguybri says:

    This is seems like the very crappy version of DCC’s Shadow of the Beakmen.

  6. Starmenter says:

    Whoa, Bryce Lynch needs ME?

  7. Anonymous says:

    The way you turn me on my cock hard when you look at me

  8. GuardianTempest says:

    Hey is it okay if the system I’m writing this for is unusual? Don’t worry, I’m not gonna run Powered By the Apocalypse or anything like that. It’s just that I’m not as familiar with D&D (both old and new schools) and OSR as I am with something else.

  9. PrinceofNothing says:

    Wavestone Keep {map pending}

    Rumors – Ships crossing near this point are being raided. The accursed temple of the fish-worshippers, sealed so long ago, is inhabited once more?

    1. Narrow (10′) arched bridge of crumbling stone, spanning 30 ft. cleft between mainland and Keep proper. Each character who is more then heavily encumbered (60 ft. movement or less) has a 25% of falling through the stonework (80 ft. drop in water, 4d6 damage, strong currents).
    2. Iron gate etched with eerie visions of deep sea life. Baptismal font nearby in the shape of Halbot w. holding up hands (empty). Writing (Sahuagin); Render unto me that which, in all the waters of the Sea and below it, I do not possess. Any gift of fresh water will open the doors.
    3. Hallway. Desolate, wet basalt, murals of seaweed and shellfish. Ranks of soapstone Sahuagin statues with rusted tridents poised to strike, spiderwebbed with cracks. One trident is actually a Trident +2.
    4. Ritual Chamber. Stone platform surrounded by water, walkways connect to exits. Giant statue of Coelacanth-God on three tiered platform. Brass offering bowls (25 gp) hold 500 ep and 100 pearls (worth 10-100 each). Pearls coated with strange mucus (save vs spell or act as if charmed for 2d6 turns). Twin eyes of emerald (2000 gp each). First step trapped (envenomed spear trap, 2d6 save or die). Second step trapped (water breathing curse, save vs spell or breathe water until removed). Third step trapped (Glyph of Warding).
    5. Water underneath ritual chamber. Contains 20 Sahuagin & 4 white sharks led by Sahuagin priest (5 HD). Will climb onto land and attack if idol is molested (suprise on a 1-3). Nets, Tridents & Darts.
    6. Storeroom. Booty from sunken vessels, covered in seaweed. Barrels of water-logged biscuits, salted meats, water-logged rope. Among them an intact keg of brandy (worth 125 gp). In water-proof scrollcase is a treasure map {legit!}.
    7. Chambers of the Hermetic. 7 HD Sahuagin priest, jewelry of shellfish/pearl (w. 147 gp), a wand of Paralysis and pet Giant Octopus w. Ring of Air-breathing & Freedom of Action (can fight on land). Belongings: Various fishy prayers, necklace of shellfish (actually amulet of Inescapable Detection & Location), Scrolls (1-4 random cleric spells). Fighting will bring Sahuagin in rooms 5-8 in 1-3 rounds. Sacrifical victim tied with silver cord {200 gp} actually a Wereseal, who will thank the players and betray them at night at the earliest opportunity.
    8. Sahuagin again! 8 Elite shrineguard (5 HD, 4 arms each), turtle/crabshell armor carved with glyphs, wielding two-handed swords made from saw-fish nose. Gibber fishy prayers when they attack.
    9. Cave entrance {water level}. Below sea level during high tide. 12 Giant crabs inhabit this sunken place. Slippery stairway leads to upper keep. Wedged between stalactites, the dry-picked bones of a hapless adventurer. On his fingers are a ring of Fish Command (as trident) and a ring of delusion (water breathing).

  10. Gnarley Bones says:

    Where do we submit entries?

  11. I'm Bryce duck ng Lynch, bitch! says:

    Ok, so, I’m drunk at a bar. But, we have our first entry, since PoN didn’t submit a map. And a casual glance on my phone, five whiskeys in, says it don’t suck ass. So, the bars been set. AND it’s by a person who’s never written an adventure OR played before.

    The more you know ?

  12. Anonymous says:

    No adventure, only title proposal: Wobblyrock Citadel.

  13. Bigby's Affirmative Consent Lubed Fist says:

    A fearsome tower of stone roams the oceans, delivering its deadly cargo of lizardmen wherever it happens to land!

    I guess this means the tower is entirely made of pumice, because it’s stone and it floats? Could the entire tower be chipped into exfoliating stones and sold as treasure to courtesans and princesses?

    • Malrex of the Merciless Merchants says:

      Heh…something pumice is what I was thinking for my entry. I have zero time to do an entry, but ‘contest’ is a trigger word apparently…maybe give myself a an hour limit. I didn’t think of the ‘chipped into exfoliating stones’ part though–haha.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Do maps count against the page limit?

  15. Bryce Lynch says:

    Oh, I am so hungovber. Also, I just got two more entries. Hurrah!

  16. Entry submitted! I hope it is as much fun to read as it was to write.

  17. I couldn’t get an idea out of my head, so entry is in! The true prize is that “Not A Fucking Idiot” note, hehe!

  18. Anonymous says:

    I think it speaks to the power of Bryces work and role in the RPG space that a contest mentioned at the end of a blog post gets poppin’ like this. Drops for days, you are cool, we are cool rock on dice nerds I love you all

  19. Olle Skogren says:

    Inspiring challenge, especially with the tight deadline!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Hype! Who else we got, this is cite

  21. Jordan Rudd says:

    My entry is in. I don’t expect to win, but I would love to get some good feedback.

  22. Stripe says:

    Bryce, I hope you’ll accept entries ON the 15th, tomorrow. I plan to play-testing mine during our regular game night and sending it after.

    If not, oh well. At least I finished something for once!

  23. Malrex of the Merciless Merchants says:

    I sent one in for the hell of it.

  24. Bryce Lynch says:

    Yeah, of course I will. The 15th is fine.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Please review Masks of Nyrarlohotep

  26. Sevenbastard says:

    Just E-mailed my 5e Masterpiece of an adventure.

    Why did I go 5e? because when you go to prison you don’t pick an easy fight. plus i am going to polish that turd a few more times then sell it.

  27. Bryce Lynch says:

    Ok, contest deadline reached! Expect entry reviews to start showing up in about a week!

  28. Anonymous says:

    Woopl woop

  29. Bilygote Mohawk says:

    I feel like I just posted a pic on Reddit’s roast me thread

  30. squeen says:

    Here’s my entry (6 months late):

    The moon slips behind the clouds,
    but the shadows on the water remain.

    Our grandfathers’ fathers had already forgotten
    why the watchtowers were raised facing the Bay,

    Its been nearly as long since soldiers crowned the turrents,
    to scan the dark waters at the dying of each day.

    The Devil demands his due, for each and every lapse.
    The price for smug pride eventually gets paid.

    So on this night friends, lovers, sisters, and brothers…
    …will only be prey.

  31. ShockTohp says:

    Hey Bryce, thanks for the brutal honesty, This thing is the first adventure I ever wrote for publication, I’m glad it at least generated some levity and a contest that hopefully spawned some better designs. I am still working on improving my craft, so that future efforts are not so blatantly terrible.

  32. Sevenbastard says:

    Just saw Return to Wavestonekeep on Drive Thru

    Man the gift that keeps on giving!!

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