20 Things to Find in a Purple Worm’s Stomach

Few predators can match the purple worm for strength, ferocity and might. Even powerful adventurers do not take on a purple worm lightly for they often consume their prey whole. (Indeed, stories of entire adventuring parties consumed by a purple worm are not uncommon…)

By Mark Hyzer

By Mark Hyzer


Few things can withstand the corrosive acid found in a purple worm’s gullet, but those that do are invariably valuable. That’s why adventurers often cut open a slain purple worm to see what treasures might lurk inside. (Well that and a need to recover their companions’ bodies). While a GM no doubt has generated a list of treasure found in the purple worm’s stomach, other damaged or worthless items may also be recovered. Use the table below, to generate the details of such items:

  1. Several large shards of seemingly tough rock. If they are dumped out of the purple worm’s stomach they disintegrate into soft shards when they hit the ground.
  2. The hilt of a once fine longsword. A shard of blade is yet attached to the hilt, which was once decorated with golden runes; now only scraps of the gold inlay remain.
  3. An iron potion vial without its stopper. Filled with the purple worm’s digestive juices, the vial must be rigorously washed before being used for its original purpose. (And, of course, a new stopper must be procured.)
  4. The remains of an iron-shod rod, now much damaged by its time in the worm’s stomach. The rod’s beaten iron tip remains, but much of the once potent magical item has been reduced to a mass of sodden wood.
  5. Seven pitted iron spikes. If hammered into a tough surface such as stone, each as a 25% chance of bending or breaking.
  6. This purple worm consumed a duergar rogue several weeks ago who was carrying a sack of coins. The duergar has long since been all completely digested. However, some of the coins have survived, but are badly damaged. They are now only good as scrap metal but if melted down are worth a total of 75 gp.
  7. The remains of six skeletons and remnants of several pitted steel weapons—pick heads—fill the worm’s stomach. (This was once a party of svirfneblin miners who the worm gobbled up).
  8. A fine cold iron (but nonmagical) dagger pierces the back of the purple worm’s throat—wedged there by the worm’s last victim as he tried to climb out. The dagger is unaffected by the worm’s strong digestive juices.
  9. Nine small shards of iron ore. Individually, none are large enough to forge a weapon, but together there is enough to create a longsword or similar weapon. The worm’s stomach acid has impregnated the ore and if such a weapon is enchanted, it deals an extra 1d6 acid damage on a hit.
  10. A partially dissolved iron helmet sized for an ogre or similarly large creature. However, the helmet has no eye holes. (This is actually the head of an iron golem destroyed by the worm months ago).
  11. A six-foot long iron pole wholly unaffected by the worm’s stomach acid. Once the personal weapon of a dwarven monk, the iron pole is in fact a quarterstaff.
  12. The stone in the worm’s stomach comprises obviously once fine stonework including intricate carvings of elves and demons. (The worm recently attacked and partially destroyed part of a drow fortification before being driven away and this could provide a clue to the PCs that such an enclave lies somewhere nearby).
  13. The worm’s stomach contains a great mass of pitted and decaying bones. Scraps of flesh hang here and there to the bones, but they are generally in a terrible state. They appear to have belonged to a variety of creatures.
  14. A careful search of the worm’s stomach reveals four arrowheads crafted from an incredibly hard metal (adamantine) that seem untouched by the worm’s strong digestive juices.
  15. A decaying skeletal hand yet clutching a wickedly curved dagger. The dagger is chipped and worn, and the blade is loose in the hilt. It is worthless.
  16. Chunks of undigested stone fill the worm’s stomach. Some pieces are as large as a halfling. If a PC cuts open the worm’s stomach without taking care the stones slide out and fall onto the PC’s foot (inflicting 2d6 damage).
  17. The torso of a dark elf wearing the remains of a finely crafted chain shirt. The chain shirt is of ordinary make, but has offered some minor protection to the elf’s torso. Of the rest of the drow, only bones remains.
  18. Several chunks of stone hold glittering flecks that at first glance look like gold. A close look, however, reveals them to be nothing more than pyrite.
  19. The worm’s stomach contains several heavily degraded pieces of metal whose original purpose is indecipherable.
  20. This worm has recently consumed an adventuring party. Although most of the party is no more, one of its members was wearing a ring of regeneration when he died. The ring is heavily damaged by the worm’s stomach acid, but some magic yet clings to its golden band (although its large green sapphire is missing). Instead of its normal powers, the ring now only doubles the amount of hit points a character wearing it regains while resting. To repair the ring, its large green sapphire must be replaced and regenerate must be cast on the whole thing once a week for a month.

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