Underwater Non-Combat Encounters, NPCs and Hazards for 5e

"A rescue giant seahorse is looking for help for trapped ally. It carries bags with useful items such as rope, potions and tool."

Tables for Non-Combat Encounters, Quick NPCs and Hazards & Obstacles for Underwater. Result is from Underwater Non-Combat Encounters.

Non-combat by terrain - arctic | coastal | desert | forest | grassland | hill | mountain | underdark | underwater

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Underwater Non-Combat, NPCs & Hazards

Merfolk, talking crabs and water spirits await in the depths. Young merfolk might be curious about the world beyond the sea or a sea priest might be leading an underwater ritual. Meet NPCs from a berserker who has fallen in love with a sea creature to a merrow with a pipe of bubbles and gifts to hand out. Deal with inky clouds, inquisitive seahorses and strong underwater currents.

There is a 5e Underwater random encounter generator at ChaosGen. There is also a pdf of these and more tables at the DM's Guild as Underwater Encounters.

Underwater Encounters Terrain Encounters Bundle for 5e

Underwater Encounter Tables - creatures | locations | non-combat | enhancements

Underwater Non-Combat Encounters

1d8+1d12Underwater Non-Combat Encounters
2 An empyrean in on a sightseeing tour of various underwater ruins
3 A spirit naga (swim 40 ft.) asks many probing questions. Has things from the surface to trade
4 Several kuo-toa lost from the Underdark are bewildered by the sea
5 A storm giant is gathering donations to help a good cause
6 A few acolytes and a priest doing a ritual in old underwater temple
7 An awakened giant octopus (int 10) wants a long conversation
8 A deva is trying out different beast forms in the water
9 A druid (can turn into a killer whale) looks for others of their kind
10 A few cultists (with water breathing) have been sent to find a wreck (or kraken)
11 A group of young merfolk want to learn of places beyond the sea
12 A sea sprite (swim 40 ft.) is after allies to help protect the area
13 A rescue giant seahorse is looking for help for trapped ally. It carries bags with useful items such as rope, potions and tools.
14 A dryad of a large underwater plant asks for some music or a tale
15 A pair of talking giant crabs (int 10) ask for advice on styles of shell and different homes. Have a variety of large colorful shells nearby.
16 A malenti (sahuagin that looks like an aquatic elf) is looking to start a new life. They ask about opportunities on the surface.
17 Among a shipwreck skeleton crew work as if they were alive
18 A clay golem is dragging a large net something along the seabed
19 A whale (or shark) turns out to be an adult gold dragon scholar who asks many questions about their lives and adventures.
20 A gnome mage and their veteran assistant are operating an apparatus of Kwalish. They are searching for an undersea alchemist.

Underwater Quick NPCs

1d4+1d6Underwater Quick NPCs
2 Gorev is a heartbroken archmage with a collection of ornate rings. They are unable to hide emotions and having a hiatus away from civilisation. Their attention has been taken up by a local magical site.
3 Keranios is a grim lizardfolk pearl diver with an affectionate pet seahorse. They talk about a group of druidic whales who rule the seas.
4 Xappan gaunt merrow with an pipe that blows bubbles. They talk about the importance of giving and have a gift for one of the group.
5 Sariel is an old scout with a pair of glowing goggles. They are concerned only with the present and have a sea anemone collection
6 Arannis unhappy sea elf priest with flowing blue hair. They seek information about an artifact and have a rivalry with a merfolk mage
7 Alhandra is a crafty druid with several whale tattoos. They are accompanied by sea urchins are like talking to creatures of the sea
8 Katernin is a joking berserker with an assortment of ivory charms and strange armor. They have fallen in love with an inhabitant of the sea.
9 Vezera is a philosophical sea hag wearing mismatched clothes from the surface. They love talking for hours and make beautiful poetry.
10 Raam is a smug veteran with a runed spear and a pegleg. They are scared of the undersea world but hope to salvage an undersea wreck.

Underwater Hazards and Obstacles

1d8+1d12Underwater Hazards and Obstacles
2 Area of dead magic (treat as antimagic field)
3 Maelstrom (25% chance portal to Plane of Water)
4 Area of frigid water (DMG page 110) with chunks of ice on seabed
5 Cloud of murky toxic water (poison damage or poisoned condition)
6 A siren's call for help from a sea cave mouth
7 Underwater current that pulls down into underwater ravine
8 Cloud of inky blackness (25% chance portal to the Shadowfell)
9 A bubble (or pocket) of air, floating or stationary
10 Strong underwater current that might carry creatures away
11 A phantom ship that sails underwater or bloated corpses infected with disease
12 An area of sharp, jagged seaweed (treat as razorvine, DMG page 110)
13 A swarm of inquisitive sea-horses
14 A mass of animated seaweed (like entangle spell)
15 A periodic booming noise from a sea cave or trench
16 A bright beacon, possibly a distress call or celebration
17 Underwater steam vent or a weird mass of seaweed that acts as Brown Mold (DMG pg 105)
18 A sonic beacon, possibly a distress call or warning
19 A mass of rotting bodies, floating or chained together
20 A dark vortex that pulls creatures in, portal to another plane

More Encounters

There is a 5e Underwater random encounter generator at ChaosGen. There is also a pdf of these and more tables at the DM's Guild as Underwater Encounters.

Underwater Encounters Terrain Encounters Bundle for 5e

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