Innovation happens every so often in the RPG world when a publisher takes an existing product and does a few things that everyone wanted to do, but no one figured out how to. Thus is the case for Kenzer and Company’s Trove of Treasure Maps, a remarkably unique product.
Treasure Maps feels like someone took a bowl of liquid creativity, blended it with chunks of detailed artwork and visual writing and baked it on the 44-page PDFs layout. Treasure Maps is sort of a book of short adventures. They are written to be plane enough to fit into any campaign but detailed enough so that the NPCs and locations come to life. It is sort of an adventure book, because, looking at it as simply that, the biggest part of it is lost. These adventures are all manipulated around a PC handouts and treasure maps, all of which are crisp and engaging. In most books, this is usually the other way around, with maps and handouts being an afterthought to the adventure. Each of the seven adventures contains one or two handouts, one of which is a map that drives the adventure. Most of the maps are puzzles, leaving it up to the PC to figure out the clues to reach the next step. These puzzles are give na difficulty and range from straight forward to truly mindboggling.
The good folk at Kenzer were gracious enough to provide both a Hackmaster and a d20 ruleset, making the product multifunctional. The only negative about this book is the font, which feels a bit too small and dotty. But that small tidbit does not take away from the overall solid layout work.
For the Dungeon Master
When you get past the font, the clear writing make each adventure easy to follow. They are also all quite diverse. The City Underground will be a favorite for the DM that likes to test the mental worth of his party.
The Iron Word
Trove of Treasure Maps is such a deceptive name for a remarkable set of adventures presented in a new, innovative way. If you are looking for well-written roleplaying driven adventures with fun, interactive handouts, you have reached the right place.