Hello adventurers and game masters, welcome to Wally D.M. Today, I will be sharing three puzzles that I have run in my campaign and are fairly easy for players to figure out. I like to run my puzzles as a gateway to reach the next level to the dungeon but they could also be used as an optional task that leads to greater treasure. Whatever the case may be, I hope you enjoy the ideas and details below! I look forward to your response in the comments below!
Let’s take a look at these rooms with magically sealed doors. Only by completing the puzzle will the party be able to see what is on the other side!
DOOR OF THE UNLUCKY
An iron door is magically sealed. The door has no visible markings, just an iron spike that is centered on the door at about human eye level. The Spike seems to have molded to the door and cannot be removed. It is slightly angled up. Perception will reveal an old metal plate with an inscription at the base of the door.
GM NOTES: The metal plate states reads “Door of the Unlucky”. This can be in Common or the PCs may need to Read Magic, DM choice. To get through the door, the party must bring about three superstitious acts that are determined to be “unlucky”. The party must find a horseshoe, a mirror and a ladder. Place the ladder so that it rests above the door, break the mirror, and hang the horseshoe upside down on the iron spike sticking out of the door. The three objects are scattered elsewhere among the dungeon, town, castle etc.
DOOR OF THE PACIFIST
In the center of the room is the remnants of a large, round wooden table surrounded by pieces of damaged wooden chairs. The table and chairs show heavy signs of rot and decay. Also strewn about the room are about a dozen old, empty wooden buckets and what appears to be broken paintbrushes. There is an iron door in the center of the North Wall. Also along the North wall, to the right of the door, is a large, closed, reinforced wooden crate to the right of the door. This room is covered with thick layers of dust.
GM NOTES: The door on the north wall is steel and is magically sealed. Perception checks will identify the paintbrushes and buckets. Easy Perception checks will draw attention to the wooden crate, since it does not have the same layer of dust and age as the rest of the room. A little higher on the perception and a player will notice markings on the door and North wall. Most of the markings are covered in dirt and dust. If the characters take the time to wipe off the dust, it will reveal a painted mural the entire length of the north wall. This will take a few minutes and maybe the old paintbrushes will help. The DM may decide that a save versus Fortitude is in order for all of the dust in the room or PCs will have a fit of sneezing for a certain period of time.
Once the wall and door are “cleaned” or “dusted”, the left side depicts a painting of warriors and adventurers. The right side shows a stockpile of weapons, bows, swords, axes, daggers, maces, etc. The wooden crate is located center mass, underneath the mural image of the weapons. The door itself depicts the backside of adventurers walking away, as if they were walking through the door.
Simple enough, the characters must put ALL of their weapons inside the large reinforced crate. Once all of their weapons are placed inside, the crate will slam shut and vibrate briefly. The steel door will creak and swing open. If the characters reopen the crate, they will find their weapons are gone! If the characters did not put all weapons in the crate, they can still retrieve their items from it, but the door will not open until they do. Unbeknownst to the characters, there will be another magical box that contains their weapons somewhere else in the dungeon on the other side of the door. Up to the DM, but they could be presented with an option of corridors to go down. One leads to the box and their weapons while the other options lead to traps or encounters.
Regardless, no weapons can ever pass through the Door of the Pacifist. Passing through this door can only be done if all weapons are teleported through the crates. Maybe the room with their weapons and crate depicts the same mural and another Door of the Pacifist to pass through to go back?
DOOR OF CHILDREN’S BEDTIME: This room can be found within a home, castle or dungeon. There are four, twin-size wooden bunk beds in this room. Each wooden bed has an old wool blanket with various holes apparently eaten by insects. There are also two open wooden boxes in this room. They are empty and contain nothing of value. Scattered about the room are several wooden objects. This room is fairly well lit with four large candles burning, one each on a small wooden table next to each bunk bed. There is a magically sealed wooden door with a door knob along the north wall. A bookshelf sits next to one of the wooden boxes, about three feet high, with about two dozen different books. Elsewhere in the room is a granfather-like clock with pendulum. The clock is not currently tracking time and currently rests with both hands pointing straight down in the six o’clock position.
GM NOTES: The wooden door is well made and indestructible. It is magically sealed. The door will not open no matter what the PCs may try to do. However, if a PC attempts to turn the knob, or wiggles it, everyone in the room will hear a deep, burly voice from beyond the door:
“It’s not your bed time yet, go back into your room and play, or read a book or something”
Further attempts to “jiggle” or turn the door knob will result in:
“Didn’t you hear me, I said… Go Back to your room and play. It’s not your bedtime yet!”.
If the PCs are making too much noise, the burly voice may shout: “Quiet Down in There! Don’t Make me Tell you Again!”. As GM, maybe beginning with this line as soon as the party enters the room will help draw attention and curiosity to the door.
Perception checks will reveal that this is a room for children. The wooden objects are toys (Figurines, dolls, marionettes and child size wooden weapons) and the books are all children’s books. Searching the book shelf will reveal a missing book. The missing book can be found if a character searches under one of the bunk beds. The book is entitled Jack and the Beanstalk.
To set the puzzle in motion, one of the PCs must begin turning the hands of the clock. When it reaches 8:55, the hands can no longer be moved. The pendulum begins to swing and the clock begins to tick. On the other side of the door the party will hear a pleasant woman’s voice…
“Bedtime is in five minutes children. Pick up your things and get in bed! I will be in to check on you shortly.”
The PCs must do exactly that. Pick up all of the toys (including the hidden book of Jack and the Beanstalk!), put them in the toy boxes (or back on the bookshelf) and be in bed for when the clock strikes 9:00pm. At 9pm, an apparation of a motherly looking human will float through the door.
IF the party picked up all of the items and got in bed… and the candles are still lit, the woman will say: “Oh, you’re still awake! Well then, let me read you a story. She will then proceed to get Jack and the Beanstalk from the bookshelf and read it to the PCs.” When she is done, she will blow out the candles, the magical door to the north will fade away, along with the woman.
IF the party picked up all of the items and got in bed… and the party blew out the candles before the woman arrives, she will say: “Ah, you must be tired little pumpkins. Very well, get your rest my dears.” She will then slowly fade away, along with the door to the north.
If the party fails this challenge by not picking up ALL of the toys (including the missing book) or being in bed at 9pm, then the ghostly woman will appear to charge through the door, become angry and scorn “I told you to pick up all of your things and get into bed! How dare you disobey me!” The party will then hear the crack of a whip and feel an intense burning on their backside as if they had just been lashed, taking 2d8 (or other, DM Choice) of damage. The woman will dissipate and the room resets, putting the clock hands back in the 6 o’clock position and all wooden objects back on the floor.
That’s all for today! If you liked these, please let me know in the comments below! 🙂
On to the Next!