The ancient ruined city of Tamoachan is familiar to a select few scholars and fortune seekers, who know of it but not always exactly where it is. Even more secluded, lying somewhere within or beneath the ruins, is a hidden shrine said to be dedicated to Zotzilaha, the vampire god of the underworld. Adventurers who catch wind of the place are likely to find its lure irresistible, for it is said to be filled with ancient treasures of limitless value and magical power. But be warned, plunderer, for where there is prize there is also danger!


The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is a Dungeons & Dragons adventure/dungeon delve set within an ancient Mayan/Aztec styled pyramid. It is designed for up to six player characters starting at 4th level and who might reach 6th level by the adventure's conclusion. The adventure's plot can be summarized as follows:

  • The characters find their way to the environs of the ruined city, where they can set up camp nearby. After a few hours of searching, they can find an easily defended glade with an artesian spring. Exploring the city will eventually lead to a central clearing where a great pyramid stands. In the south side of that clearing is a newly collapsed area, revealing a jagged hole with a debris-covered slide, leading down into darkness.

  • Once inside the ancient temple, the characters will find its halls filled with tricks and traps that will challenge not only their skills, but also their minds! If they can best the strange and unusual obstacles to reach the center of the shrine, a terrible danger awaits them. Those who can survive it will undoubtedly come out with enough treasure to retire, if they so wish.


The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan was written by Harold Johnson and Jeff R. Leason, made its original debut under the title Lost Tamoachan at the Origins game convention in 1979, where it was used in the official D&D competition. The first published version of the adventure was produced in 1980. Because of its critical aclaim, it was lovingly updated to 5th edition as part of the Tales from the Yawning Portal supplement. It's a veritable classic from D&D's history!


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The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan

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