Can you remember the first time you and your companions lit torches and ventured underground? I can, it was 1975, I was sixteen and we were being DM’d by a Canadian AirForce brat (I was an RAF brat). We came across four goblins playing with dice in a chamber underneath a ruined keep and we very nearly crapped ourselves. A short fight later our Wizard was dead, but so were the goblins.
As Fifth Edition starts to grow the next supplement to get the upgrade is Denizens of the dark. Now you can pit your players against a range of dastardly, low level foes in the under-earth.
The Dwarves of the under-earth are avaricious and small-minded. More concerned with gold and gems than their surface kin, they regard adventurers as little better than thieves. Living in an unforgiving environment where most things either want to eat them or take their stuff, they have a tendency to fire first and ask questions of the survivors.
One of the reasons for their nervousness is the presence of Orcs. Not overly bright they are nonetheless not to be underestimated for they are both tough and savage. A patrol of orcs is more than a match for a low-level party on its first expedition into the under-earth, especially if they bring an ogre with them.
Another savage denizen of the dark are the goblins. These are cunning and well-organised, something that offsets their small size and lack of strength. Many a party has underestimated the goblins and never returned to the light of the sun.
Deeper in the under-earth, often close to volcanic vents you may find tribes of kobolds. They regard themselves as the children of dragons and can be very aggressive for a race so small. Although they do not use metal weapons they make up for this with fell magic and their ability to tame deadly fire serpents.
The last part of this supplement lists a few classic dungeon monsters; giant rats, giant spiders and giant scorpions.
My next venture shall be to upgrade Supplement 6C, Death is only the beginning…