LASER DANGER

©2017 by Laser Danger

Danger at the Dead Mall

July 24, 2018

Recommended Levels 1-2

 

The planet of Merchomia was once the premier shopping and trade destination of the galaxy. Even with a lack of natural resources and high-radiation levels, luxury boutiques and extravagant malls dominated the planet's surface. Merchomia's economy flourished for centuries until an event known as the retail apocalypse.

 

Though the details are lost to time, scholars hypothesize that the planet was thrown into chaos by the botched release of an anticipated collectible version of the lovable mascot, My Friend Stellapus. Due to an unfortunately placed decimal point, the available release day stock was a fraction of what was advertised. Riots broke out at every shopping center, which quickly spilled into the streets. The planet's radiation shields were irreparably damaged in the chaos and Merchomia's residents were forced to evacuate. Some of the more desperate collectors elected to stay despite the unsafe radiation levels, left to sift through the rubble of an abandoned planet.

 

The Adventurers are contacted by a mysterious collector who communicates to the party using a holo-avatar of the popular character My Friend Stellapus, a cute tentacled alien with star shaped eyes. The collector introduces themselves as Stella-star, and wishes to hire the party for a potentially dangerous recovery mission. Stella-star believes they have found the location of a Super-Rare Limited Chase Rainbow Sparkle Edition My Friend Stellapus, still in the box! Ancient inventory records suggest that there may be an unsold figure in the Value Valley Mall on the abandoned planet of Merchomia. Stella-star can provide the mall coordinates and the information in the introduction paragraph to the party, but knows little else about Merchomia. They can however, tell the adventurers all about My friend Stellapus and bore them with hours of useless facts about the cartoon mascot.

 

 

The planet of Merchomia has a thin atmosphere that does little to shield it from solar radiation. Almost the entire surface of the planet is covered in ruined retail space, with occasional patches of sickly decorative greenery. The Value Valley Mall is located in a crater over-grown with mutated palm trees, some bursting through the mall roof itself.

 

 

 

 

1- Entrance

 

The massive mall's entrance is easily located under a flickering Value Valley sign. The mirrored facade of the building is cracked and the large glass doors leading inside have been shattered. The interior of the mall is dimly lit by filthy skylights and neon store signs. Distorted pop music still plays throughout the building and the gurgling of water can be heard in the distance.

 

The mall is huge and has hundreds of stores. If the PCs choose to search through any of these shops there is a 10% chance that they can find a usable item in the rubble. PCs can add their perception scores to this roll (finding an item if their roll plus perception is 90 or above). Instead of naming each store individually, the following table can be used to generate names. 

 

Store Names- Roll 1d12 on each list

 

1-Laser 2- Fashion 3- Shake 4- Comm 5- Jewel 6- Sport 7- Game 8- Pretzel 9- Candle 10- Beauty 11- Toy 12- Cybernetic

 

1- Smith 2- Hut 3- Shack 4- Castle 5- Prince 6– O' Matic 7- Depot 8- Tyrant 9- Hub 10- Planet 11- Bazaar 12- Secret

 

 

2- Escalators

 

The mall's creaking escalators lead to the second floor. Other than climbing they are the only easily accessible route to the upper level. Currently both sets of escalators have been set to move quickly downward, this was done by the ancestors of the Mall-Walker tribe to deter dangerous wild life. Running up the escalators in the opposite direction of the movement requires a DC 18 Athletics check. Alternatively, the party can make a DC 18 Engineering check to stop the escalator movement or reverse the direction. If the party fails this check by 5 or more, the escalator direction is reversed to move upwards, but accelerates suddenly once the PCs are half way up. Each PC riding the escalator must make a DC reflex save or be flung into the air, landing on the upper level and taking 3d6 falling damage.

 

 

3- Fountain

 

The elaborate mall fountain is situated on the first floor between the escalators.  A gap in the second floor balcony allows a birds eye view of the fountain. Jets of water still spray upwards in rhythmic displays, though some occasionally glitch and sputter. The bottom of the pool glimmers with thousands of exotic coins worth 500 credits total.

 

While the fountain water appears normal in light, it is contaminated with mutagenic microbes that glow faintly in darkness. Reaching into the fountain coats one's limb with the mutagen. Affected PCs must make a DC Fort save or their limb spontaneously mutates to twice its normal size. Attacks made with the enlarged limb have a -2 to penalty to hit but deal 1.5x damage. Affected PCs also take -4 to their reflex saves. This mutation wears off after 24 hours.

 

 

4- Food Court

 

Unlike the rest of the mall, the food court is well-lit. PCs entering the top floor from either set of escalators can see the light in the distance.

 

The food court houses the tribe of the Mall-Walkers, the mutated descendants of scavengers who stayed on Merchomia after the retail apocalypse. Restaurants have been turned into workshops and merchant stands. Booths, tables and chairs build the framework of tall huts, shingled with plastic food trays. Featured on a shrine in the center of the food court is a mint in box Super-Rare Limited Chase Rainbow Sparkle Edition My Friend Stellapus. The figure is covered in rainbow facets that casts dazzling reflections when it catches light.

 

The Mall-Walkers hide when the party approaches the village unless coaxed out. Attempting to remove the Stellapus from the shrine prompts the tribe leader and several shrine guardians to emerge from their huts and confront the party, armed with scavenged sports equipment. The Mall-Walkers are pale humanoids with elongated legs and glowing eyes. Each is garbed in a patchwork of trendy mall fashions primitively altered to fit their curious frames. As a coming of age ritual each Mall-Walker ventures into the depths of the mall and brings back a unique relic from the ancients, after which they take the name of the store where they found their treasure.

 

The mall-walkers speak a very outdated version of common, but can communicate with the party. The tribal elder Auntie Ammie is the first to speak to the party. Though she is hunched over and requires a walking stick, the other members of the tribe respect her wisdom and bravery. She wears a patchwork robe made from colorful prints and a petrified pretzel hanging from a tarnished gold chain around her neck. She tells the party that the Stellapus is the tribe's most sacred relic, and brings them good fortune and protection from the ancient monster that stalks the depths of the mall.

 

The party can make a deal with Auntie Ammie, she will give the party the Stellapus if they defeat monster and return alive. She gives them directions to its lair and protective charms made from cheap department store jewelry.

 

5- Springtime Village

 

The monster of the mall was once a normal human in a rabbit costume who provided spring themed photo opportunities for children. Now they are a hulking mutant who stalks the upper levels of the mall. Resembling a 10' tall pale pink humanoid rabbit on steroids, the monster has only one fear: bright light. The dazzling light display cast from the Stellapus figure in the village has warded off direct attacks from the Mutant, but it still delights in hunting any Mall-Walker that strays from the village.

 

The Mall Mutant sleeps on a stinking throne in a small enclosure once decorated to look like a cheerful village. Pastel egg sculptures have been smashed and replaced with colorfully painted Mall-Walker heads on pikes. The enclosure is strewn with offal and bones which crunch underfoot when tread upon, waking the beast. It lets out a fetid roar and fights to the death as soon as it becomes aware of the party.

 

 

Mall Mutant                                        CR 3                                          XP 800
CE Large monstrous humanoid
Init +1

Darkvision 60 ft., Perception +8

 

Defenses
HP 40
EAC 14 KAC 16 Fort +5 Ref +7 Will +4
Regeneration 5 (Turns off with exposure to bright light)

 

Offense
Speed 40 ft. Leap 30'
Melee claws +10 (1d6+9 B)
Reach 10 ft.

 

Statistics
Str +4 Dex +1 Con +2 Int 0 Wis +0 Cha +0
Acrobatics +13 Intimidate +8 Survival +8
Languages: Old Common


Abilities
Light Blindness- Creature is blinded for one round when exposed to bright light and remains dazzled afterwards in areas of bright light

 

Leap (EX) The Mall Monster's rabbit like hind legs allow it to leap through the air as if it has the Jump Jets armor upgrade

 

Regeneration (Ex) The creature regains 5 Hit Points at the start of its turn, It can't die as long as its regeneration is still functioning (although creatures with regeneration still fall unconscious when their Hit Points reach 0). Exposure to bright light causes this creature's regeneration to stop functioning for 1 round. During this round, the creature doesn't regain Hit Points and can die normally. 

Conclusion

 

If the adventurers bring proof of the monster's death to the Mall-Walkers they are hailed as heroes. A celebration feast is held and the party is served a traditional meal of hot dogs on skewers and sweet spiced rolls for desert. At the height of the feast, the Auntie Ammie hands the party the mint in box Stellapus figure.

 

The Super-Rare Limited Chase Rainbow Sparkle Edition My Friend Stellapus is worth a small fortune, enough to buy a tier 2 star ship. If the party returns the figure to Stella-star, they each receive 1000 credits as payment along with a designer Stellapus force field armor upgrade. This functions as a brown force field but appears as a shimmering bubble shaped like a cartoon octopus.

 

If the party decides to keep or sell the rare collectible, they draw the ire of Stella-star, who is in fact a Vesk crime lord. If she finds out the party is alive and has sold the figure, she puts a sizable bounty on each of their heads.

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