Travel: Goblin Village
With the quest Witch Hunt complete, there’s now nothing distracting you from paying this Goblin Village a visit… and there’s a good chance those little buggers are going to regret crossing you before you’re done with them. With any luck you were able to spot the Goblin Village area just by traveling through the Kamelands earlier, but if not, you can get the location by completing the "Lonely Mill" area or the Goblin Ambush random encounter. If you’re traveling from the Lonely Mill, just follow these directions:
If you’re fresh off of completing Witch Hunt, make your way to the "Bridge Over the Gudrin River" area, from which you’ll want to follow these directions:
Note: Along the way you may discover the "Lonely Mill" area, which is just northeast of the "Goblin Village" and southwest of the "Lonely Barrow". This must be a lonely area, eh?
Hydra and the Half-Wits
You’ll arrive along the southwestern end of this area’s map, and there’s not much to see to the north save the fence of the goblin village, so head east. Along the way you’ll find some goblins trying to befriend a Primal Hydra, which ends about as you’d expect. After snacking on its would-be friends, the Primal Hydra will turns its attention to you. Must be hard to feel full with that many heads. Cut the hydra down to size, then continue east until you can venture no further in that direction before turning north to find an entrance into the goblin village.
Enter the goblin village and you’ll find a Goblin Horseslayer standing near a gate. Talk to the little critter and he’ll claim to have a quest for you, which upon further explanation seems awfully like a mundane chore. So yeah, a quest. Seems that good help is hard to find, as his "fren" - who got the unequal task of feeding the beastie in the pen - has abandoned this task. Since this goblin can’t possibly open the door and feed the monster within, he’ll need your help, and guess which task you get?
You can, of course, decline the goblin’s generous offer, or you can outright attack him, but it’s more fun (and somewhat more lucrative) to play along and head inside the pen. Approach the creature in the pen - another Primal Hydra - and it’ll attack, predictably enough, and the goblin outside will quickly scamper off. What exactly were you planning to feed this hydra with? Oh well, the only acceptable meal for it to consume now is whatever lengths of steel you have handy. Cut it down, then loot a chest along the southwestern wall of the pen to score some gems and food-stuffs, then exit the pen.
The goblin quest-giver fled north when the hydra attacked, but fortunately he didn’t go far. You’ll find him standing near a goblin statue, and if you interact with him, he’ll play dumb. Well… dumber. If you choose to leave, you’ll get a small experience reward, which is the same amount you’ll get by just killing him. If you have Jaethal in your party, she won’t give you a choice, provoking hostilities on her own.
|Reward: For sparing the quest-giving goblin|
Through the Goblin Village
Continue northeast from the goblin statue to find another monster pen. The goblins beside it aren’t nearly as subtle as the quest-giving goblin was, as they’ll simply free the Primal Hydra in the pen, then flee its wrath. Kill the hydra, then loot a pile of rocks south of the pen to find a Token of the Dryad. Northwest of the goblin statue, in front of a goblin hut, you’ll find another pile of rocks which conceals a Taldan Warrior’s Dog Tag. Finally, between this goblin hovel and the hydra pen is another pen occupied by a Primal Manticore, which you can free and kill for some experience. Kill the manticore, then search the fence west of the door to its pen, where you can find [Perception 23] a well hidden cache of loot containing 500 GP, some gems and other treasure.
With the eastern end of the village explored, make your way west through the center of the village, passing between the goblin hut to the north and the goblin quest-giver’s Hydra pen to the south. As you go, some goblins will arrive with another pet - a Primal Manticore - which they gleefully sic on you. Dispatch the beast, then note the path to the north, where you can find a large stone structure - clearly not of goblin make - guarded by two Goblin Alchemists and two Goblin Horseslayers. Ignore them for now and focus your attention to the west, instead.
Make your way west until you find another monster pen to the north, where you can slaughter another Primal Hydra, should you desire the experience for doing so. Whether you kill the Hydra for sport or not, keep venturing west until you find some cliffs blocking your way. At these cliffs, turn south and maneuver around a small hut and continue south until you reach a dead-end, where you can find [Perception 23] another well-hidden cache containing some scrolls, potions and… a spider leg? Goblins, right?
Leave this profitable dead-end and make your way northwest from the last Hydra pen you passed to find another goblin. This one has a rather novel approach: instead of setting a monster on you, it’ll stand back and taunt you. Head towards the goblin taunter and you’ll discover the nature of its game, as it has trapped the ground in front of it. Fortunately, its trap-making skills leave much to be desired, as the traps are not only easily spotted [Perception 6], but trivial to disarm [Trickery 6]. To its credit, though, the traps can deal significant damage if you stumble onto them.
Take care of these traps and chase the goblin north, dealing with another pair of traps (with identical checks) as you go. After this, it’ll turn west and retreat to a dead-end, leaving you one more trap to deal with. Disarm this fourth and final trap, then confront the goblin, which tries to talk its way out of trouble like the goblin quest-giver. If you spare it, you’ll gain a pittance of experience, while if you kill it, you’ll gain the same amount. As before, Jaethal will limit your options by engaging in violence.
|Reward: For sparing the trap-laying goblin|
Deal with this goblin however you wish, then loot the nearby chest to find Beastrender, a Falchion +2 that has the "Animal Bane" property, acting as a +4 weapon and dealing +2d6 extra damage against its designated foe. Do what you will with this weapon, then continue west and north past a ruined stone fence and around a small goblin hovel before making your way uphill and to the east. You’ll ultimately reach a dead-end cliff overlooking a large stone structure below you, but you’re not here for the view. Instead, loot a pile of rocks to the north to find a Melted Shard of a Ring.
Return back to where you caught up with the goblin trapper, then make your way around a fence to the south to reach the abode of a Goblin Merchant. While he still lives up to what you’d expect from a goblin - being an absurd parody of a real merchant - he does actually have some wares to sell. It’s not quite "everything you be needing for adventures, spell-casting, sword-swinging" unless food, Potions of Enlarge Person and Everburning Torches fit that description. It also should be noted that his prices are downright absurd. 123,457 GP for a Masterwork Club?
Leave the silly goblin to his trade and make your way up a steep hill to the south of where he does what he calls business. Atop this hill you may find [Perception 7] a pile of rocks wherein a Taldan Horseshoe is hidden.
Now that the western end of the goblin village has been explored, make your way back to the center (where some goblins unleashed a Primal Manticore on you) and head north from there. Time to deal with the goblins guarding the archway leading to the stone structure beyond. They’ll be peaceful enough so long as you keep your distance, but approach too close and they’ll attack. Target the Goblin Alchemists first to prevent them from unleashing too much mischief with their bombs, and when they’re dead loot them, as each alchemist holds a Ring of Protection +1.
Enter the ruined, circular structure the goblins were fiercely guarding and they’ll try to entice another animal - a Ferocious Owlbear - to feast on a captive goblin, Nok-Nok. This goes about as well as most of their monster-handling efforts (much to Nok-Nok’s delight), and the goblin king and goblin shaman who were spectating from above will flee, leaving you to defeat the rampaging Owlbear.
Do so, then talk to Nok-Nok (not to be confused with the less phonetically correct "Knock-Knock"), who claims to be the Seer of Lamashtu. His proof is more than a little coincidental, but he will tell you what he knows about the plague of monsters that threatens your land, as well as his antipathy with the goblin shaman. It’s an enemy the two of you share, and accordingly Nok-Nok will offer his services for the mutual benefit of both parties.
|Reward: For rescuing Nok-Nok|
Accept him into your group if you want - he starts out as a 4th-level Rogue with an absurdly high Dexterity score. He can fulfill your thieving needs well enough (Stealth, Trickery, Perception), but he’s also inclined towards melee combat. With his two-weapon fighting style, the optimal use for him involves flanking, then letting his sneak attack damage make up for what his weapons and Strength score may be lacking. Just keep him using light weapons to make use of the Weapon Finesse feat and never attempt to have him go toe-to-toe with any competent combatant and he’ll do well enough.
Before you leave, you have one more decision to make. Head to the northern end of the structure you’re in to find a huddled mass of terrified goblin villagers. All the chatter here boils down to one decision: spare the goblins, or massacre them. Make what moral choice you will, but in this case it’s more profitable to show mercy. At least, you’ll get more experience, but you can take the weapons the goblins drop and sell them, for what that’s worth. Finally, before you leave, loot a chest near the goblins to score 200 GP, a Potion of Cure Serious Wounds and a Recipe: Taffy.
|Reward: For sparing the goblins|
This ends the quest Mother of Monsters, and assuming you’ve completed the quests The Seed of Sorrow and Witch Hunt, the quest Season of Bloom should now begin. Before you go running back to Tuskdale, however, there’s another area you should revisit, as it’s now populated with new events and it’s close by! That’s right, time to return to the Bridge Over the Gudrin River. Who knows? Helping some folk here might just end up being beneficial for you shortly…