Skill Challenge: It’s Mine

by Ameron (Derek Myers) on March 23, 2009

A retired soldier, down on his luck and in desperate need of cash, recently pawned his dead wife’s wedding band. After coming into a few coins, the result of a lucky wager, he returned to the pawn shop to buy back the ring. Unfortunately the shop was recently burgled and the ring was stolen along with four others.

Setup

  • The PCs are hired by the soldier to recover his wife’s missing ring. He could have a previously existing relationship with the party or maybe he heard of thier heroic deeds.
  • The PCs are hired by the shopkeeper to recover the stolen rings. As a reward, he offers to give them the item they came into his shop looking for in the first place.
  • The PCs overhear the soldiers tale of the missing ring while they have a meal in the local tavern. They take pity on his situation and offer to help.

Complexity

5 PC level +0 (requires 12 successes before 3 failures).

This skill challenge is broken into two parts. In order to complete this skill challenge the PCs need to earn a total of 12 successes between parts 1 and 2 combined. Likewise, failures incurred during part 1 will carry over into part 2.


Part 1 – Locating the Ring

Primary Skills

Bluff, Diplomacy, History, Intimidate, Streetwise, Thievery

  • Each skill can only be used to accomplish 1 success towards the overall skill challenge unless noted otherwise.
  • Skill checks denoted as assist do not count as a success or failure towards the overall skill challenge.

Secondary Skills

Perception, Insight

Bluff (moderate DC)

Pose as a buyer looking for a special ring at a discounted price.

Diplomacy (easy DC, maximum 2 success)

Make friends among the locals. Learn of an upstart thieves guild.

History (easy DC)

This town has a tradition of corruption in its law enforcement. People can get away with just about anything as long as the watch is sufficiently bribed.

Insight (hard DC, assist)

You learn who is “in the know” about the thieves guild and who is not. +2 to the next Diplomacy, Intimidate or Streetwise check.

Intimidate (moderate DC, maximum 2 success)

You sufficiently scare someone with good information and they spill their guts.

Perception (hard DC, assist)

You witness small acts of theft and follow the criminals back to the guild house. +2 to the next Streetwise check.

Streetwise (easy DC)

While asking about stolen goods, you learn of the presence of a newly formed thieves guild.

Streetwise (hard DC)

You learn the location of the guild house.

Thievery (moderate DC)

You perform “unsanctioned” acts of thievery to deliberately draw attention of the guild.


Part 2 – Recovering the Ring

Once inside the guild house the DM may want to include a combat encounter (or two). The specifics are left up to the discretion of the DM.

Primary Skills

Athletics, Bluff, Diplomacy, History, Intimidate, Perception, Stealth, Thievery

  • Each skill can only be used to accomplish 1 success towards the overall skill challenge unless noted otherwise.
  • Skill checks denoted as assist do not count as a success or failure towards the overall skill challenge.

Secondary Skills

Arcana

Athletics (moderate DC)

Climb the side of the building to enter through the second window or the roof.

Arcana (medium DC, assist)

Identify a magical trap on the door. +2 to Thievery check to disable trap.

Bluff (hard DC)

Tell the guard a convincing lie to gain access without combat. If you offer the guard a bribe you get +2 to the Bluff check.

History (moderate DC)

Your familiarity with this style of architecture gives you an idea of the house’s layout. +2 to Stealth and Perception checks while inside.

Intimidate (hard DC)

Scare the guard, convincing him to let you pass without combat.

Perception (moderate DC)

You act as the look out for anyone climbing the building. +2 to your ally’s Stealth check.

Perception (hard DC)

Look for traps on windows, doors or on the roof.

Perception (hard DC)

While searching inside the guild house you find the missing rings.

Stealth (hard DC, maximum 3 success)

Move through the house undetected. If done as a group Stealth check a maximum of three PCs can assist with this check.

Stealth (hard DC +2)

If the PCs engage in any combat inside, they need to make a group Stealth check after the combat is finished. A maximum of two PCs can assist with this check.

Thievery (hard DC, maximum 2 successes)

Gain entry through a locked door or window.

Thievery (20+1/2 party level DC)

Disarm or delay a magical trap on the door.


Success

The PCs find the rings and return them to the pawnshop owner. The thieves guild is unable to identify the PCs as the people who broke into the guild house.

Failure

The PCs find the rings but don’t get away as cleanly as they thought. The leaders of this thieves guild make it a point of keeping tabs on the PCs and will take revenge on them in the months to come.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dungeon April 2, 2009 at 9:02 am

Hey, a Great idea to add to this would be if the thieves killed the soldier’s wife. then the players could find out why they did it. which could lead to something else in the story… ^_^

The old Soldier could want revenge! I think that would be a good idea. then the PCs could either help him or stop him.

2 Ameron April 2, 2009 at 9:10 am

@Dungeon
I’ve created these skill challenges in order to give the DM options. I like your suggestion and think it’s a great addition. If a DM wants to add that element then I fully support it. It would take what seemed like a simple skill challenge and turn it a hook for a future adventure.

3 BattleAxe+8 March 3, 2010 at 1:32 am

What about the soldier being one of the thieves and he was lying about the ring? When the PCs contact the soldier he tries to kill them and you add Assassins to RandomEntecounterList they should be in groups of 3 and they should be PC’s level average -3 or 4

4 Ameron March 3, 2010 at 8:29 am

@BattleAxe+8
That would certainly add a twist to the skill challenge. Ous skill challenge examples are meant as a guide for DMs. Use them as we’ve presented them or change them up as you see fit. If you decide to have the soldier betray the party I’d suggest you have a good reason for doing so. I’d also give the PCs an opportunity to detect duplicity or hidden intention at the beginning of the skill challenge. They may not realize exactly what’s up by they should get the sense that there’s more going on then they’ve been told.

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