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Behind The Walls
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/22/2018 15:07:22

"The adventure takes place in the north of Havenland, near to the Scrottish borders by the Kelderwater lake (see Hex M09 of The Haven Isles map).

Ebeneezer Garbett, a local farmer from the mushroom-filled valley village of Otterdale, returned to the hamlet with tales of riches he had found. Now, no-one has seen him since, and he villagers are becoming ill with a strange fungal infection." Set within the Midderlands Behind The Wall by John Large is an adventure with Scrottish fungi weirdness happening around the party as they run into legacy of the ruins of an ancient Goman fortification recently. And this is a well put together but deadly adventure centered around the events of the farm stead of Ebeneezer Garbett & his ill dealings with the Mullach Dubh. This fungi is a mould that grows on the dead, absorbing their memories and re-animating their bodies into a terrible half-life. But this isn't a simple face down the zombie hordes adventure. Instead this is a thinking man's adventure where the player's PC's are going to be dealing with the slightly off kilter weirdness of the Goman empire of the Midderlands. And some of the horrors of the alien invasion like take over of the Mullach Dubh. The layout & artwork are top notch & the cartography is of course up to Monkey Blood Design standards. "This adventure is intended for low level play and can be scaled up or down accordingly. It should work best with 4× Level 1-4 player characters." Now according to the read through I had this is a fairly low level adventure but you should have four or more players with PC's from the Midderlands. The adventure Behind The Wall by John Large is very hex location based & has a solid quality about it. If you like the Midderlands then you're going to love Behind The Wall by John Large. It has that same White Dwarf magazine old school quality about it. The humor is right center point but this is still a take down aspect to it that will slaughter your PCs. This is a really flexible & customizable for your own old school or OSR games especially Swords & Wizardry.

Really comes down to the random tables & ideas scattered through out the product & it makes good use of them. Behind The Wall by John Large retains the charm & deadliness of the Midderlands line. Played wrong & Behind The Wall by John Large will slaughter PC's without remorse & not even give the party a second glance. This is a solidly done adventure that does what it sets out to do. The events in the villages of Behind The Wall will challenge & possibly kill a novice group of players. But will vex even the most jaded experienced gamers. Highly recommended. Five out of five fungi infections for the win!

Eric Fabiaschi Swords & Stitchery Blog Want more original OSR content? Subscribe To https://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com/



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Behind The Walls
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Behind The Walls
by Matt S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/19/2018 11:30:21

Another fabulous product from MonkeyBlood Design. The hits just keep coming!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Murder Knights of Corvendark
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/12/2018 11:33:06

"No one knows from where they came. All feathers and spite. Their vile beaks spit angry screeches, and beneath their wing beats, acrid miasmas swirl.

Within the subterranean caverns beneath Wychington — on the shores of Lake Grimwater — a small part of a region from long ago, or maybe a time yet to pass, has come into existence. Malign and abhorrent half-men, half-crows inhabit this harrowing place. Standing menacingly, clad in the darkest armour, or on their pitch-black wings protected by lighter, piecemeal leather armour, they murder men and feast on their flesh. Strangely resentful of their barely-feathered gods, they despise other living creatures for taking their breaths.

This is Corvendark, and under the sign of an inverted, five-skulled star, the Murder Knights dwell. Since the coming of this otherworldly realm, the Grimwater Lake region has been plagued by the atrocities of the ‘harpies’ — as they have been incorrectly named — regularly raiding the surface lands. None have been ravaged more so than Wychington, a small town on the northern lake edge at the mouth of the Lesselling River.

It is now that heroes are needed. Who will destroy this menace, or send them back whence they came?"

So begins The Murder Knights of Corvendark From MonkeyBlood Design

& the product is full of full on maps! This is an adventure location module. But when I received the email I grabbed my comp copy from Drivethrurpg I was astounded at the number of location based maps & yes this does bloody well plug into the Midderlands setting. But not necessarily for all your OSR campaign needs & I was pleasantly surprised by this. The Murder Knights of Corvendark From MonkeyBlood Design is designed for use with Swords & Wizardry but can easily be adapted for use with OD&D. There are a lot of traditional Dungeons & Dragons elements within this adventure & that's a good thing. The fact is that many of today's OSR designers & writers try to reinvent the adventure formula. The Murder Knights of Corvendark doesn't do that. Instead it presents the adventure elements in such a way as to give the players & the dungeon master some time get through the adventure in challenging & engaging way. This adventure can be played over six or so sessions in my opinion but if the players are stupid they're going to die in glorious & gory ways.

The cartography is excellent & the writing is up to Midderlands standards. For the most part everything in the The Murder Knights of Corvendark clicks all of the right buttons. For adapting it to other OSR & old school campaigns. The Murder Knights of Corvendark could with some work be placed within Mystara or perhaps the lands of Greyhawk. Blackmoor might be a bit of a stretch but it would work.
The Midderlands campaign setting is where The Murder Knights of Corvendark

is going to work best. The tone & setting details picks everything in this adventure up with gusto & runs with it. I can hardly see using The Murder Knights of Corvendark with Lamentations of the Flame Princess or another dark Europe OSR setting. This adventure would suit Dark Albion & other Europe based OSR games. The theme of the Old Warhammer / White Dwarf old school adventure weirdness is certainly here in MonkeyBlood Design's efforts in The Murder Knights of Corvendark. Because this is a fifty page adventure location based adventure there's lots to do & events happening within the adventure itself. Sure there is a spooky theme here but its not flat hitting you over the head with itself. There is an investigative & solid way of dealing with players in the module's method. The adventure location areas are well fleshed out but not overwhelmingly so like other OSR adventures. The full theme runs well though out the text here & the dungeon master can & will have to run with certain adventure hooks. Overall I really liked The Murder Knights of Corvendark . I hope to see more adventure location based modules from MonkeyBlood Design crew. I'd give this a five out of five because of the above the cut quality efforts from the rest of the OSR crew. Eric Fabiaschi Sword & Stitchery Blog Want more exclusive OSR content? Subscribe to https://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com/



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Murder Knights of Corvendark
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Midderzine Issue 1
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/15/2018 15:42:35

Glynn Seal of Monkey Blood design has been quietly building his Midderland setting empire with product across the board for old school & OSR games. The Midderlands setting is a dark fantasy England on acid filtered through the warped imagination of early White Dwarf magazine fans wrapped around a Swords & Wizardry rpg core rules set. This brings me to issue #1 of The Midderzine from Glynn Seal & the Monkey Blood crew. So what's in this issue & why is the Midderzine important to OSR fans?! Well here's what's in the zine; "an interview with Jim Magnusson, 'news' from The Haven Gazette, 3 Hex Locations, The Village of Stonecastle, The Eyeless Harrowers cult, two new NPCs, three new monsters, a new class - Crowmaster, two new spells, five new oddities, four new flora and fauna." Even if you haven't gotten the Midderlands setting or the Midderlands Expanded book this has some very interesting fiddly bits & pieces that can be applied to bring the Midderlands to your gaming world. For example 'news' from The Haven Gazette are adventure seeds & hooks to get the PC's involved with the locals of this region. But here the adventure hooks pull the PC's in for example the local leper knights have a new expansion; The Leper Knights of Saint Corrobin in Helm’s Ford "In Helm’s Ford last week, the growing group known as the Leper Knights ofSaint Corrobin were granted rights to erect a monastery on the outskirts of the‘Without’ part of town. Many of the townsfolk are unhappy about the close proximity to the disfigured andcontagious outcasts, but Lord Porc Turmeric has confirmed that they are part of a defensive strategy for the town and anyone who obstructs the rights afforded to them will be dealt with harshly." What happens when some of the locals hire the PC's to help clean out some 'undesirables' from the village?! This is only one of the many examples that are woven throughout the Midderzine. The big selling point of the Midderlands is the Gloomuim - A green magick glowing stone like substance that is in fact concentrated magical chaos that can mutate things, be used for magical items, to power spells, mutate animals & flora into monsters,etc. & it permeates every aspect of this dark fantasy England. The 11 adventure seeds & hooks all tie directly back into the settings & the locals making it very dangerous for PCs! Next we get three new hex locations & all that entail these seem like they came straight out of an early issue of White Dwarf but they have the unique Midderlands spin to them. That is to say they might be based on some possible real world historical location or other. But these locations always have that green laced weirdness factor that makes the Midderlands unique. We get the 'Plinth of Dullen Fields' with its own take on the possessed royals bit; 'It is said that a witch hexed the oldLord of Shroomsbury, and he became possessed by a devil. Staffleford had acted to prevent the malignancy from spreading. However, the Lord of Shroomsbury also believed the same about the Lord of Staffleford, and had acted in the same manner.' And there's some room here for the dungeon master to really go to town on what else its connected to in their own version of the Midderlands. 'The Ruins of The Cock &Pocket Inn' might be the enterance to a dungeon or underground green hued ruin or something far more sinister. Then there's 'Ratdog Tor' & its deep connection to the twisted monstrosities of the Midderlands. I don't want to go into too much detail here but you get the idea.

Then we get the village of Stonecastle," The village of Stonecastle is ruled over by the Fellchurch family, and the current ruler is Sir Uriah Fellchurch (see The Midderlands Expanded page 182). Sir Fellchurch treats the villagers well, and they respect him." And we get a whole village setting for the asking where adventurers might actually have a quiet time of it. Well, of course they won't be cause there's more brewing under the surface. Speaking of brewing we get a brand new cult of eyeless ale brewers known as 'The Eyeless Harrowers' whose ales grace the local taverns throughout the region. These incredibly evocative NPC's have some far more things happening under the tap then you might think & might also be NPC patrons rather then foes!? Two mid teir NPC's are next who come with their own adventure hooks build in;"Edmund Fester travels the Western Midderlands with his fellow adventurers; the human thief, Vex Vandel. Then there's this information broker whose not the usual sort; 'Corlin Lackcraw is in the discrete service of Sir Uriah Fellchurch. He dispatches Corlin around the lands to see what the crows are saying, and feedback any information that may be of use to Stonecastle.' We've got three new monsters from 'the Midderlands' including Gloomrats who are absolutely nasty bastards! 'Catviles are large cats devoid of fur, instead being covered allover with loose, dark, light absorbing skin. ', which I personally want a Catvile as a pet! This takes me into the demonic 'Devil Goat' & I've seen a couple of different versions of a monster called a 'Devil goat' but this is a disembodied demonic goat head with tentacles & a passion for evil! These things are really nasty & even seasoned adventurers are going to have problems! Then we are presented with a brand new class known as the Crowmaster! These are men & women who spend years out on the moors & forests listening to the language of Corvids! This folks know all of the gossip & spinets of rumors & information that these birds collect. They advance up in levels & have very tight relationships with these birds. Imagining royals having spy net works of crows, jays, etc. throughout their kingdoms! Well don't imagine it because that's the sort of weirdness of the Midderlands. We then get two new spells 'covered in shit' & 'bag of crap' which is both pretty great. The covered in shit spell is a second level spell & does exactly what it sounds like. The second spell allows a magic user, druid, or cleric to reach into a leather bag & pull out a useful item or maybe not. The random tables of the Midderlands expanded book has the dungeon master covered but I'd make my own. Its an amusing second level spell for the players. Finally we get bunch of new Midderlands oddities which are solid magic items strongly connected with the Midderlands setting itself. All in all we get a solid setting fanzine that has been set up by the Monkey Blood design crew & Glynn Seal to act as both fan support & as a solid way of continuing the expanding setting of the Midderlands. That being said I think that it could be be bought by an OSR gamer to really get a good foot hold into the Midderland's setting to really get a feel for it's green laiden weirdness! I'd actually say its a four out of five for its utility & usefulness as a game supplement even if you don't own a single Midderlands book!

Eric Fabiaschi Sword & Stitchery Blog Want more reviews & OSR content then subscribe to https://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com/



Rating: