Dungeon candle/torch sleep trap


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I have some adventurers exploring a dungeon and I want them to fall into a typical sleep trap.

but instead of the traditional walk into a room and it fills with gas, I was thinking they are in the room, light the candles/torches and its letting out a gas from there.

is there any real world substances that could work like that, or do I need to make something up?

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I don’t think there’s any real world substances, since candles produce carbon dioxide, but at such a low level that it’s negligible, and torches don’t produce anything more noxious. 

But you can have a great deal of fun having someone add something to the candle wax so when it melts, it gives off the gas that will render your adventurers unconscious. Or it could be a component of the oil that the torches are soaked in. You’d have to make it up, of course, unless you want to look at the sort of herbs or essential oils that are usually associated with bedtime. Off the top of my head, without any Googling, that could be lavender, chamomile, valerian… :D

 

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Yeah I remember stories from Greek mythology that involved something in the torch oil or mixed into the candle wax that when one of the hero's and his party would light them, it slowly let out a gas that knocked them out over time.

Not sure if there was a real substance used or not, if there was it would just save me time but if not eh I can farce something. 

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On 7/18/2022 at 9:51 AM, SirGeneralSir said:

I have some adventurers exploring a dungeon and I want them to fall into a typical sleep trap.

but instead of the traditional walk into a room and it fills with gas, I was thinking they are in the room, light the candles/torches and its letting out a gas from there.

is there any real world substances that could work like that, or do I need to make something up?

There’s several ways to write it. A pressure plate that subtly starts the mechanism when wax sloughs off the candle in response to heat. wax, tallow or even the wick could all be mixed, coated or otherwise applied with somnolence inducers or even a mixture that all applies different dosages if only to have an ironclad punch together. Depends, on what flavor you’re going for? Transition? TotalPartyKnockOut? Or even A la I Have You Now My Pretty!

Even a wire on the door that pulls a lever that starts the gas the moment its opened. Traps really give you a handy card the trick is working backwards from effect. Might be that weird title on the floor at the entrance. Might be a countdown mechanism. Could be all of the above?! Who knows? Only the trap builder and the architect, and the person who funded it know for sure.

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What about something in the food?

Change the room into a dining hall or something and ….. something is in the food. 

I need a name because ATM I am thinking the “bad guy” tells them “yeah I put X in it, knocks you out good.”

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On 7/18/2022 at 4:51 PM, SirGeneralSir said:

I have some adventurers exploring a dungeon and I want them to fall into a typical sleep trap.

but instead of the traditional walk into a room and it fills with gas, I was thinking they are in the room, light the candles/torches and its letting out a gas from there.

is there any real world substances that could work like that, or do I need to make something up?

How about the reverse?

You’ve got candles… but they go out because the oxygen’s being stripped from the room’s air.  How?  The old halon gas fire suppression, one of the most effective fire suppression agents available.  So, rig it up, one of your adventurers trips the fire alarm :)

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If you’re going for something in the food, there’s always good old poppy, aka opium. Have them eat a spicy stew laced with enough opium to fell an ox, and there you are. :lol: 

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On 7/31/2022 at 7:44 AM, BronxWench said:

If you’re going for something in the food, there’s always good old poppy, aka opium. Have them eat a spicy stew laced with enough opium to fell an ox, and there you are. :lol: 

Yeah, that would do it.  The secret ingredient is an ungodly amount of poppy seeds, greens and more. Whether or nor they wake up is another matter. The hulking barbarian might be knocked out but the elder sage of venerable age and the tiny sorceress that’s probably 90lbs wet on a good day is absolutely dead.

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On 7/18/2022 at 11:51 AM, SirGeneralSir said:

I have some adventurers exploring a dungeon and I want them to fall into a typical sleep trap.

but instead of the traditional walk into a room and it fills with gas, I was thinking they are in the room, light the candles/torches and its letting out a gas from there.

is there any real world substances that could work like that, or do I need to make something up?

Hi, “buncha-titles.”

This sounds like a job for a magical potion mixed in with the candle wax or torch-head.  For added “drama,” have the wizard of the party recognize the potion, but not quite in time to save the day.

Thanks.

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On 7/29/2022 at 4:31 AM, Desiderius Price said:

How about the reverse?

You’ve got candles… but they go out because the oxygen’s being stripped from the room’s air.  How?  The old halon gas fire suppression, one of the most effective fire suppression agents available.  So, rig it up, one of your adventurers trips the fire alarm :)

This would work best in the last chapter of the story.

As the party entered the chamber, Bolbo Slaggins lighted one of the torches already in to room to provide more light in the dank large cell.

Hrothgar sniffed the air warily and opined, “Something’s not right here.  The smell...”

This was the last word or cogent thought the seven adventuring intrepid heroes had—ever.  Rocks fall, everyone dies.

Cheers!

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On 8/5/2022 at 2:01 PM, Wilde_Guess said:

This would work best in the last chapter of the story.

As the party entered the chamber, Bolbo Slaggins lighted one of the torches already in to room to provide more light in the dank large cell.

Hrothgar sniffed the air warily and opined, “Something’s not right here.  The smell...”

This was the last word or cogent thought the seven adventuring intrepid heroes had—ever.  Rocks fall, everyone dies.

Cheers!

“Twist the tropes” can be quite fun to do at times.  Of course, @SirGeneralSir will need to decide if the adventurers live or die, and work from there.

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On 8/5/2022 at 5:15 AM, Wilde_Guess said:

Hi, “buncha-titles.”

This sounds like a job for a magical potion mixed in with the candle wax or torch-head.  For added “drama,” have the wizard of the party recognize the potion, but not quite in time to save the day.

Thanks.

I do enjoy when characters pick on it a little too late. It helps blunt the blow a bit when they do fall to traps.

Bard: Does this room smell like chloroform to you? The sorceress sniffed the air for a bit. “Why am I not surprised with you?”The rest of the party’s faces paled in recognition as the sorceress suddenly bolted towards the door that had quietly bolted itself behind them.

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15 minutes ago, InvidiaRed said:

I do enjoy when characters pick on it a little too late. It helps blunt the blow a bit when they do fall to traps.

Bard: Does this room smell like chloroform to you? The sorceress sniffed the air for a bit. “Why am I not surprised with you?”The rest of the party’s faces paled in recognition as the sorceress suddenly bolted towards the door that had quietly bolted itself behind them.

The trouble with killing off the characters is you’ll need some more to replace the first party, do it too often and you’ll have red-shirt syndrome.

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4 hours ago, Desiderius Price said:

The trouble with killing off the characters is you’ll need some more to replace the first party, do it too often and you’ll have red-shirt syndrome.

 Tomb of Horrors

Is the only reason to have Red-Shirt Syndrome. Ah! Memories! Hahahaaha!

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Alright, too much youtube, it was mentioning poisonous gas. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LnkwxKHVLeU

  1. Phosphine can be had by heating white phosphorus in aqueous solution of potash (potassium carbonate).  While the pure is odorless, the technical grate can have a highly unpleasant order like rotting fish.
  2. Arsine can give off a slight garlic scent when it’s presence is above 0.5 ppm … it’ll destroy the kidneys (according to this video).
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So the plan, still working on it, is that the party ends up in the room, because of the sleep stuff they get captured by …… someone, and must deal with either escaping or being diplomatic etc.

I am leaning more towards escaping and fighting their way out of the place and so on.

But I thank all of you for your thoughts and ideas, gives me more ideas to work with.

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