Wednesday, 7 July 2021

Dungeon Delves KS Quick Views Old Fashioned Goodness

So that feeling you get when your Kickstarters are all going cold and you hope it arrives before some creators implode on social media and you say I'm not doing anymore and then several arrive. So now I'm waiting for three projects only and I am pretty sure they are on the way so all good. The best KS I had was for the Runequest 2 that was on time and more updates than I could possibly use (I had all the other content). When I was poor a late KS project was a bigger deal. Off to see Black Widow tonight which was my planned to see for birthday before last - yay!

So one minor project I said yes to was on basis of old school dungeon modules and one had Babylonian themed and the other was Willy Wonker GONZO. Arrival was a surprise as I wasn't torturing myself over it.

The style of adventure in 1980 is the golden age. It's not nostalgia I prefer the village + wilderness + minor locations + big dungeon format. This is versus the narrative railroad series of mini-dungeons that the 80s morphed into. Many Dungeon Mag adventures seem to fit in my sandbox style too but the narrative railroads are often linked to strong settings that can be hard to extract vs the simpler "module" that would can slip in anywhere. I remember as a kid id read a module once or twice, run it within 10 days and move to the next one. So complex plots and npc motivations were often hard to digest and rely on removing player autonomy. Id rather players make their own adventures and crisis.

I liked these and willcheck out more.
They have amazing artists I could see credits for some.
I wish the early dungeoncrawl retro dnd modules would get reprinted in compilation books 

Dungeon Delve DDS1 The Sacred Temple of Erwadu
This is the awesome thing that got me into sampling these. If I put it alongside my top ten 1980ish modules this would rate well. The culture novelty use is kind of like that old Aztech pyramid. Lots of Ziggurats are in old adventures for some reason I am all for but this is probably one of the best I have seen. It fuses Gygaxian naturalism and mythology nicely. The historic inspiration is mostly well handled but I wouldn't quote it in a History. Im sure my Enki cult in my games would accept this local version. I hope to use this and trying to get my players to go from stone to bronze campaign next might happen. It would help me finish my bronze age adventure stuff in the works. The dungeon is well designed with lots of quest items needed so search everything, a time count down, some great multi room traps and mythic shenanigans aplenty. Rhe module is designed to use in a Mesopotamian game or as a oneshot (I like the end for this) or by adventurers searching the ruin. 36 pages very much in retro DnD style 

Dungeon Delve DD4 Secret of the SIlver Spire
This is features a weird alien silver city full of flying apes, modrons and strange magic tech. It has interesting maps riffing on hexes and grids and other classic alien-magic-tech-wrech genre. It would fit in slumbering Ursine Dunes, Anomalous Subsurfaous Environment or my weirder Planet Psychon, or Ultraviolet Grasslands or even your vanilla fantasy europe for extra incongruence. 52 pages with the layout and cover features not quite on brand as the above module for old-school clone style but it is fine like a parrallell evolution. The cover art is amazing (looks like Russ Nicholson?) and the colours are kind of acid. Adventures with the random plane and mutation tables are a must. Basicly you explore this living alien tower and its function and purpose are enigmatic Fire Jester seems very Michal Moorcock Fireclown and I could see an eternal champion wandering through here. I have not read as thoroughly as the previous module but It looks dense in strangeness. Reading Update: By the last few rooms I got a bit sympathetic to monsters a problem I have.

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