Thursday, 22 July 2021

The Midderlands KS Book Arrival & Oldschool Flavour


So my KS 5th edition D&D book of the Midderlands Arived and it is pretty nice. Glynn Seal has always done nice work and its good to see him doing his thing here. Personaly my favorite DnD era was probably 1980-85 and especially the grungy psuedohistory of UK gaming gear like pre Warhammer White Dwarf and the UK adventures for D&D and the artists of that era. Lots of overlap with Fighting Fantasy also. This setting has lots of that grimepunk style with fairy tale cottages, eerie strange green light and lots of horrible creatures and goblins. 

The design is nice but my POD copy had some slippage somewhere and needed an extra half mm off RH and bottom edge trimmed or more bleed in art. It is still a pretty book with its own style and feels. I like the 16th hundreds feel and could be linked to other products like Ravenloft, Warhammer, Dark Albion and Highfel might fit in well here also or other Gillespie megadungeon books. The Gloomy green light mythos is great with cutout of the world crust which I always enjoy in a setting. It is responsible for mutations and many strange creatures and is used to light lamps. Green fireflies, misty weather and other things add to the flavour well. Religion is nice and new domains fun. 

There is a hexmap but the detail on a book I struggle with a bit. Id like a nice folded map of the area in detail. Heraldry is good for local areas. There are lots of villages and towns detailed with nice maps you could drop in a game as they are and some hexcrawl locations. There are a few pages of items and spells and a large monster section. The fish alone are wonderful, the goblinoids make my brain squee with glee. There is an adventure section with ideas and hexes and a whole page on the standing stones illustrated. The appendix has a list of hamlet names, loot table, festivals, weather, insults, names, trades and an index. Occasionally I get a bit of a vibe from the Torchlight computer game.

There is lots to unpack here and as a baseline setting, it has lots of good ideas and ways you could use this. There are not too many pages of stats and more lore than new rules for setting anyone could use. Lots of my tables would work well with this setting. Ravenloft is a good possibility and has overlapping themes already. Names and language are evocative of an England campaign from medieval to Elizabethan or later easily. You could mix it with Pendragon for strangeness too. Its detailed enough to be helpful and inspiring but not over detailed with lore dumps. I want to see some of the other books in the line now.

Id like to see encounter tables.
I like the tables that whet my appetite.
I rate very highly.

I'd like to hear from anyone else into this setting or what people think of other products.

Update: Ive ordered several books oops and the maps
Lots of good helpful reviews
I doubt I would have been able to consider affording these prior

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