10 Things to Find in a Giant Spider’s Web

A staple of low-level dungeons, giant spiders are fearsome predators well able to take on and slay neophyte adventurers.

Giant Spider by V Shane

Giant Spider by V Shane

 

As hunters, giant spiders often ensnare prey in their webs. In turn, once brave adventurers slay the giant spider they inevitably search its web for treasures—normally plucked from the decomposing bodies of previous victims.

Use this table, to add objects of interest—but little value—to proceedings.

  1. A thick bundle of webs holds the dried and desiccated remains of a gigantic rat. The size of dog, the rat’s corpse bears several jagged puncture wounds.
  2. Dust covers part of the web. When it is shaken—perhaps in battle or while being searched—the dust cascades to the floor temporarily obscuring vision and causing anyone in the area to cough as it fills their lungs.
  3. A pile of bones—obviously from a human-sized humanoid—lie scattered below the spider’s web. Investigation reveals the skull and spinal column are missing; PCs searching the web find them suspended in a ripped cocoon.
  4. A myriad of small spiders scuttle about the web, busily spinning their own tiny webs. The tiny spiders are the spawn of the giant spider, but there are not enough of them to swarm. Individually, they are no threat to explorers although perceptive individuals note that some of them have a jagged red pattern on their body.
  5. One part of the spider’s web has been cut down. Wisps of webbing hang from the surviving portions of the web and several desiccated, partially eaten rat corpses lie scattered about the floor.
  6. Water drips through the ceiling over one portion of the web. Consequently, that part of the web glistens in the party’s lights—perhaps enticingly or suspiciously so.
  7. Incongruously, a finely wrought dagger with a discoloured blade hangs in the webs just above the party’s heads. Retrieving the dagger is easy, but may alert whatever lives in the web to the presence of intruders.
  8. Thick webs fill the area. In one particular area, the webs are wrapped tightly around a yet moving humanoid form. The humanoid is completely enmeshed but still struggles to free itself. If the party free the trapped individual, they discover an adventurer recently succumbed to ghoul fever…
  9. Part of this web has a strange red hue to it. Investigations reveal a spray of dried arterial blood covers much of the webbing. Clearly, from the amount of blood splattered about the place, whatever lives in the web has recently dined well.
  10. The skeletal remains of a half-dozen individuals lie scattered about the floor beneath this thick web. Casual examination reveals all the skulls are missing. A search of the web reveals all the missing skulls still embedded in the webs.

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This article will appear in GM’s Miscellany: 20 Things II, available in March 2017. For more, check out our Free Resources page.

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2 thoughts on “10 Things to Find in a Giant Spider’s Web

  1. #2 would be a great tactic for mites. Using Vermin Empathy they get the spider to ignore them while they “weaponize” the web. Then as the party comes upon the area one mite uses his Prestidigitation to shake the web while a second rides the spider into the ambush. The PCs are in a “mist” and maybe Sickened while the spider and rider get a round of advantage. All for a CR2, maybe CR3 encounter.