The Menace of Verdant Weald

The Menace of Verdant Weald

A threat looms over the peaceful lives of the villagers of Verdant Weald. A brutish gnoll named Gruffjaw the Vile and his band of marauders have been terrorizing the farms and forest, particularly threatening the safety of local farmers, fishermen, and travelers.


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Level: Designed for a group of three or more level 1-2 characters.

Setting: The Verdant Weald is a tranquil, pastoral region with towering ancient Oak trees, rolling meadows and farmland. It is centrally located on the continent of Eldervast, and is a popular stop by travelers who are traversing the landscapes to reach other regions on the continent. There are a number of small quaint villages within the region made up of Humans, Halflings, Gnomes, Dwarves, and Half-elves. The Weald enjoys a temperate climate, with all four seasons being of equal length, providing a dynamic and ever-changing landscape throughout the year. The Verdant Weald has lush forests for gathering herbs and gently flowing streams and lakes, which invite anglers to partake in ample fishing opportunities. Along the northeast border of the Weald is a great human kingdom known as Brightcrown.

Adventure Hook Ideas:

  • The characters stop to rest in the quaint village of Greenbranch while on the road. While exploring the town, they see a notice has been posted on the central message board. The notice, issued by the local militia, calls for brave adventurers to hunt down and apprehend the menace named Gruffjaw the Vile for a hefty reward.
  • Supply caravans traveling from Greenbranch to the Kingdom have been showing up less and less as weeks go on, causing a disruption in the local economy and dissidence amongst the townspeople. The characters have been hired to travel to Greenbranch and inquire about the recent missing supply caravans promised in their trade agreement.
  • The characters call the Verdant Weald home and step up during a town meeting to protect and eliminate the threats of the gnoll incursion, including apprehending Gruffjaw the Vile and handing him over to local authorities for extradition.

Key Locations:

1. Greenbranch: A small, bustling village made up of Humans (65%), Halflings (20%), and Half-elves (15%), where the characters can gather information, supplies, and rest.

2. Verdant Weald: The sprawling forest, stream, and farmland where Gruffjaw and his band are known to roam.

3. Edgewood Garrison (Militia Outpost): Located at the edge of Verdant Weald, where the characters can learn more about Gruffjaw and receive last-minute supplies or assistance.

Main Quest - The Hunt for Gruffjaw:

1. Gathering Information: In Greenbranch, the characters can speak with locals and militia members to learn about Gruffjaw's recent activities and his last known location.

2. Tracking the Gnolls: The characters must venture into Verdant Weald, using survival skills and nature checks to track down Gruffjaw and his gang.

3. The BBEG Encounter: The characters will eventually find Gruffjaw, an Elite Gnoll, who is a challenging adversary for their level. He will be accompanied by lesser gnolls, making the fight more complex.

4. Returning to Greenbranch or Edgewood Garrison: Once Gruffjaw is apprehended, the characters decide whether to return Gruffjaw to the garrison or the village.


- Experience points appropriate for defeating a challenging foe and completing the quest.

- A monetary reward from the militia or town.

- The gratitude of Greenbranch's villagers, which may lead to future quests or assistance.

Optional Side Quests:

  1. Rescue the Captives: Gruffjaw's gang has taken several villagers captive. The characters can attempt a daring rescue.
  2. The Missing Livestock: Farmers near Greenbranch report that their livestock is being stolen in the night. The village's most prized pig named "Countess" is missing, only her necklace was left behind. Tracks lead towards the forest. The adventurers must investigate and find out whether it's the work of gnolls or something else and return any missing livestock to the farms.
  3. Herbalist's Request: An herbalist in Greenbranch seeks rare herbs found only in the Verdant Weald forest. However, the recent gnoll activities have made it too dangerous. The adventurers are asked to gather these herbs, encountering unexpected challenges in the forest (bears/wolves).
  4. Bandit Ambush: A group of bandits is taking advantage of the chaos caused by the gnolls, ambushing travelers on a road near Greenbranch. The local militia is stretched too thin and asks the adventurers to deal with the bandit threat.
  5. Investigate the Lair: Discover the hideout of Gruffjaw and find valuable loot or information about other threats to the Verdant Weald.

Skills and Roleplay Opportunities:

  • Nature, Perception, Stealth, and Survival checks while exploring the Verdant Weald.
  • Persuasion, Intimidation, and Insight checks while interacting with patrons of the Jolly Angler and the Marshal at Edgewood Garrison.

Starting Location:

The Village of Greenbranch

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