50 Sea adventure hooks for your roleplaying campaign
Exploration, Pirates, The great open oceans, these are great starting points for a sea based roleplaying game campaign.
These adventure ideas and story hooks are suitable for games such as Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder, and Savage Worlds.
Fifty nautical adventure idea’s for your RPG campaign
- A cartographer is asked to map out a new found island, the party is asked to protect and assist.
- A ship’s captain is asked to find a new and easier sea route to the east.
- The party is aboard a ship that is to resupply a new found colony.
- A ship has hit the reefs and is shipwrecked. The party is asked to pull the ship out, or rescue any survivors and cargo.
- An island has been found with strange and beautiful creatures. A zookeeper is willing to pay a handsome price for anyone that is willing to bring them to him alive.
- After two weeks at sea, the party finds out that a stranger has secretly boarded the ship at the last port. The stranger is on an important quest.
- A shipwrecked captain has been chosen as a god/leader by the local tribe. He uses his new power for evil.
- The party has gained part of a treasure map, but the other half is tattooed on an old pirates back.
- Dead sea creatures have been washing up on the shore for days. Clerics find out that they have died by a great necromantic power.
- A man clinging from driftwood explains that he is a survivor from a pirate attack.
- A mysterious fog crawls slowly over the surface of the waters. What evil lies within?
- A storm blows the party’s ship off course towards an uncharted island.
- The party encounters a slave ship. The slaves are handled in a cruel and terrible way. What will the party do?
- In low tide, rocks stick out above the water surface. Upon closer inspection, it turns out to be the ruins of an ancient civilization.
- On a rocky beach, the hungry party finds a great amount of delicious blue crabs. When the party starts catching them, their horse sized mother appears.
- A man approaches the party in the tavern. He wants to sell them an old map leading to a shipwreck filled with treasure.
- A pirate captain has recently been imprisoned, he is waiting for the gallows. However his crew has other plans, and are coming to free him.
- Murder in paradise. A tropical paradise were the rich and famous come for leisure time, is in chaos when the corpse of a famous artist is found. The party is asked to assist in the investigation.
- Patients of an insane asylum break free and barricade themselves in the colony’s fortress.
- The pirates have never been as successful, evil, and fearsome as in the last few years. They are being led by a pirate queen, whose identity remains a mystery. The party is asked to go undercover, find out who the pirate queen is, and assassinate her.
- A great war causes thousands of refugees to sail to the colony, the party is currently staying. Causing chaos, disease, and hunger.
- A gnome inventor has build a wooden submarine that allows the party to explore underwater ruins.
- An island nation is under attack, the king is dead, the party is responsible for safely escorting a child prince across the sea.
- One day, giant obelisk stands out from the ocean. It just appeared overnight. What could this mean?
- Doppelgangers have infiltrated an island. The party is in charge of identifying and eliminating them.
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- Fortune seekers come to the island when precious metals are found. The local dwarves respond with violence. They threaten to kill anyone who set foot near their mountains, and sink any ship that ships the precious metals away from the island.
- Merfolk come to the harbor to ask for help. They are being chased away from their homes by an army of evil shark worshipping aquatic humanoids.
- A lighthouse stands on a small island. It warns ships of the dangerous rocks that line the coast of the mine island. The lighthouse however, has not been lit for several days. What happened to the lighthouse keeper and his family? The party must investigate.
- An old whaler has lost his lucky peg leg while climbing up the top sails. He asks the party to retrieve it for him.
- A recent earthquake has collapsed part of a cliffs at the edge of the island. It revealed caves and ruins with mysterious drawings and sculptures. During the night, lights and sounds can be heards. The party are asked to investigate.
- During a ball at the governor’s mansion, his daughter disappears. The party is asked to investigate.
- The volcano on the island starts to release smoke and rocks. A tribe captures children. They want to calm the angry god in the volcano by sacrificing the children.
- The oceans water is turning dark black. Everything it touches slowly dies and withers away. The elders say that it has a magical origin.
- The parrot in the local tavern talks in riddles. According to the patron, the parrot knows of a great treasure. To get to the treasure, you must solve the parrot’s riddles.
- There are rumors that each full moon, a ghostly ruined ship can be seen sailing the nearby seas.
- It is the maiden voyage of the greatest ship ever build. It is a floating fortress and deemed unsinkable. On board are hundreds of people, both military and civilian. They are sailing to the new world and filled with riches. A pirate lord has heard of this ship and taken the challenge to capture it.
- The party acquired a letter of marque, making them privateers and allowing them to attack ships from a certain country/race/group.
- Thousands of bio luminescent jellyfish are seen along the coast of the island. When searching for the source, it seems to come from an underwater cave.
- The party is responsible for transporting a baby dragon to a rich nobleman. But the nobleman is not the only one that is interested in the cargo.
- Hundreds of messages in a bottle have been washed ashore. All containing unrecognizable texts and symbols.
- Rumors are that a powerful trading company is in league with a pirate lord. The party is asked to spy and report.
- A pirate lord has acquired the help of a mighty dragon. Making him an incredibly dangerous foe.
- A voodoo lady asks your assistance in creating a doll of one of the evil merchant lords. For this you will need to collect some very personal belongings.
- A ruined ship lies in the middle of the jungle. How did it get there and what does it hold?
- The party washes ashore of a seemingly uninhabited island. But the longer they are there, the more they realize that they are not alone.
- A strange and glowing ooze slowly starts attaching itself to the hull of the ship. It seeps through the cracks, and anyone that comes in to contact with it becomes unconscious.
- A group of tourists going on a whale watching sightseeing tour have gone missing. The party is asked out find out what happened.
- A great monstrous shark is responsible for killing people at a small touristic island. The party is asked to deal with it.
- A dragon turtle has blocked entrance to a port that the party desperately need to visit.
- The wreck of a famous ship has been found. It is rumored to be filled with treasure. However treasure is not the only thing the playing will find. The old captain is a lich that still lives in the wreck under the sea.