Flaming Tundra (5e Environment)

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Flaming Tundra[edit]

Ordinary tundras are one of the harshest environments in nature, covered nearly year-round in snow and ice, with scarce food, freezing temperatures, and great storms of wind. Yet even in such a place, nature leaves her mark, filling the icy wastes with colorful flowers, edible grasses, and hardy mosses, with both docile wanderers and deadly hunters. The Flaming Tundra is not an exception, but is such a place that it should be regarded as unlivable. Lying almost directly on the southernmost point of the Material Plane, the Flaming Tundra's temperatures are nearly twice as harsh as any ordinary arctic environment, with temperatures during the summer season clocking in at -45°C / -49°F, going as low as -70°C / -94°F in the peak of winter, with an all-time low of -93°C / -135°F; all of these measurements exclude the brutal windchill. With no break in the snow, only seasonal and day-to-day intensity, the Flaming Tundra's terrain, flat in some places and hilly in others, is perpetually white. Few creatures can survive in such an environment; not even the hardy winter wolf can stay there for longer than a few weeks. However, those that do inhabit the Tundra are gifted with a special survival mechanism: Fire. The origin of the Flaming Tundra's name, all beasts that walk the whited flats and hills have special gas sacks in their bodies that produce not only ambient body heat, but can also be spewed out and ignited to blast flames. Akin to the beasts, there exists one flame-forged race in the Flaming Tundra, the fire-bellied tortle, who exist as groups of nomadic wanderers, mastering the land and aiding others who are foolish enough to enter. Aside from animals and people, a small slurry of plants grow wild in the snowy terrain, which hold the populations together. Ready your coats and grab your weapons. Are you bold enough to survive the Flaming Tundra?

Design Note: The Flaming Tundra is considered arctic for rangers and druids.

Natural hazards in the Flaming Tundra[edit]

  • Blizzards- As with all polar environments, the Flaming Tundra is known for its blinding snowstorms and terrible winds. Whenever a blizzard strikes (the DM specifies), the area inside the storm becomes difficult terrain and is lightly obscured. For every 30 minutes a creature spends in a blizzard, and immediately after everyone rolls initiative, it must make a DC 17 Wisdom (Survival) check or suffer 1 level of Exhaustion. For every additional failure, another Exhaustion level is added. If a creature is reduced to 0 hit points as a result of 6 levels from the storm, they are not killed outright, but if they spend another 30 minutes in the blizzard, they will be. Certain creatures or races may have advantage or automatic success on this check. Whenever a creature leaves the blizzard and enters a warm space, such as inside a building or next to a fire, they relieve 1 level of Exhaustion for every hour they spend there, in addition the the lost levels from rest.
  • Frozen rivers and lakes- The Flaming Tundra's waterways are frozen thick in the winter, but thin and brittle in the summer. As they are covered in snow year-round, they are difficult to spot. If a creature walks over a frozen lake or river, they must succeed on a DC 15 Intelligence (Investigation) check to notice that they are walking on ice. If the ice is thin, they must also succeed on a DC 14 Dexterity (Acrobatics) check or break the ice and fall into the frigid water. Large or bigger creatures automatically fail this roll, and Tiny creatures automatically succeed. Until the creature escapes the water, it takes 8 (2d8) cold damage every minute. A creature can use its action to break the ice, as long as it has the ability to make an attack that deals more than a set amount of damage (eg. a beast cannot break ice if it has an attack that deals exactly 1 damage per hit).

Creatures in the Flaming Tundra[edit]

Fire-bellied tortles

Plants in the Flaming Tundra[edit]

  • Drifting Geysers- Aquatic weeds that constantly leak combustible bubbles.
  • Gas Grass- A very common grass that lies just beneath the snow. Filled with flammable gasses that help fuel Flaming Tundra animals.
  • Lantern Flower- A tiny yellow flower filled with flammable oil.
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