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Darkhand´s Tomb
by Christopher H. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 12/26/2009 01:05:37

"Darkhand's Tomb" is brief adventure for Pathfinder or d20/OGL 3.5. The storyline is, to be blunt, uninspiring. I don't want to spoil too much of it here in case potential players read this review, but some of the narrative elements contradict each other. For example, p. 1 tells the DM that "Darkhand's story, his investigations, the whereabouts of his tower, and the worship of him have effectively vanished over time." However, p. 2 provides for PCs with ranks in Knowledge (Local) or Knowledge (History), or those with Bardic Knowledge, to gain significant information about precisely these matters. In my view, the whole adventure is "yet another ancient wizard's legacy gone bad," and the attempts at plot twists fell rather flat.

I love the idea of a module including printable miniatures customized to the adventure, but the ones included with "Darkhand's Tomb" are somewhat unattractive (they seem to be hand-colored versions of the illustrations from the module itself) and are unnecessarily cumbersome to assemble. The designer seems to have ignored the tried-and-true layouts for printable miniatures, and chose to chart an idiosyncratic course. The printable battlemaps are more attractive than the printable miniatures, though they're nowhere near the quality of a SkeletonKey or Fat Dragon product.

The English version of this product desperately needs additional proofreading. (I have not read the Spanish version.) Simple "Spanish-isms" like use of the abbreviation "CD" instead of "DC" are constant annoyances, as are misspellings like "leadder" for "ladder." These and many, many other errors in English grammar and usage inhibit the usefulness of the product (and certainly any pleasure gained from reading it).

After you click the button to obtain a free copy of this product, be sure that you go to your order history so that you can download the various pieces. The miniatures, battlemaps, and so on all come in separate files. Even if you're not particularly interested in "encounter cards" as such, that's where all the stats are, so be sure to download all the pieces (except the Map Tools files, if you don't use Map Tools).

I would like to see future entries in this series exhibit better stories, better writing/proofreading, and better artwork. I simply can't get enthusiastic about this particular installment, though.

[2 of 5 Stars!]
Darkhand´s Tomb
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