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CD1 Dragon Fang Halls of Castle Dracos (5E)
by Samuel K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/24/2017 22:50:05

A fun module in the old-school spirit. Very stripped down, with hand-drawn maps, that are nonetheless rather charming. Basically a small town and mini-dungeon that could serve as a nice starting point for a larger series of adventures. The price is right, too!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
CD1 Dragon Fang Halls of Castle Dracos (5E)
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WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (SnW)
by Mica G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2017 16:17:33

I hate writing bad reviews. I feel like a terrible person ("If you can't say anything nice..."). But this is a really, really bad module. $4 may sound like not a big deal, but after spending hours not just playing, but preparing, tweaking, and adding in details that should have been in this product to begin with, I feel in the need for a good, long rant!

Spoilers I picked this out because, as a first-timer GM, I wanted to run a classic "kill the kobolds, save the villagers" adventure. Keep it simple. The first thing that struck me, however, was that for the beginning, when the adventurers are given the quest (with the promise of gold) and the map to the lair, there is the name and description of the mayor (who turns out to have had a hand in things) and the names of the tavern and village. No map of the village. No other NPCs. Ok, there is a table for rumours, should the PCs ask around, with results like "A young boy with a dirty face stops in the street looks around nervously. 'I saw one of the devils that came in the night!" So, ok, this might be fine for some GMs. But I'm a sucker for detail, and I know that detail is what makes things interesting. So I added in another village from a separate product, with map, names, everything. It was a lot of extra work, but it paid off (also, having a home base is nice).

Then I noticed there was no map for the wilderness area beyond the town. This was actually quite irritating. The PCs are supposed to be spending days in the wilderness. As the module itself makes clear, actually finding the kobold lair is a big part of the adventure. Beyond making rolls for dangers like giant wasps, giant weasels, and a rock fall, there is absolutely nothing provided to make the trek interesting. So, ok, more time spent adding in stuff.

On their way to the "lair" (which is actually not the real lair, but a trap set by the kobolds), the PCs are set upon by bandits (under the payroll of the mayor). This enabled my players to track the bandits to their lair and whipe them out. But, wait. No map or description of the lair itself is provided, beyond "abandoned tower." Sigh. Is there a pattern here? Ok, so I spend some more time coming up with a battle map.

But then a problem arises. My players are smart. After dealing with the bandits, it becomes obvious to them that the Mayor is involved somehow. So before continuing on to the "lair," they decide to return to town and turn the whole village against him (this was the best part of the game and only because we all had fun with the role-playing). They learn that the mayor made a deal with the kobolds and used them to remove some "troublemakers" from the village, and get them out of his way. The theif in the party then breaks into his house and steals his gold (about 200 GP), and discovers that he didn't have enough to pay them. So, now there's no real motivation to go kill the kobolds. The PCs are for the most part the chaotic neutral type ("What's in it for me?"). Saving villagers who they have no connection with isn't enough to make them risk their lives. But being the good sports the are, the players just figure that well, maybe there's a hoard of gold in them there hills (is another 200 GP - 40GP a head for my my party of five - a hoard?).

While I did like the addition of the no-good mayor (it led to some fun role-playing), because of the lack of detail in the village, his situation with the "troublemakers" was totally unclear. Why did he have them kidnapped? How were they in his way? What did they know? What were they doing about it? No explanation is given.

Ok, so the players go off back into the wilderness to find the lair, which turns out to be an ambush. Now they have to find the real lair, which they eventually discover. OK. But the lair itself? Besides the entrance and the queen's chamber and a few uninteresting rooms branching off from these, there is no map. To find the queen's lair, the GM is told to have the PCs makes some rolls, and for each unsuccessful roll, the PCs must either fight off some kobolds and dogs or encounter a trap. WTF! To say that this half-assed is an extreme understatement. Now I'm feeling a lot more than just irritated. So... I spend some hours putting together a map so that the PCs actually have something to explore. Afterwards, I'm looking at what I've got and my heart sinks. The PCs are in for one long, boring GRIND. Combat after combat after combat, with a few traps thrown in. No mystery, no discovery, no imagination. This is when I throw the module in the trash bin and tell my players "Screw it! We're moving on to something else!"

Sure, a more experienced GM could have taken this and made it way more interesting, but why bother? And as a first-timer, I was left feeling hung out to dry.

As an aside, mid-way through running this, I discovered what is now one of my favorite blogs for OSR reviews - tenfootpole.org. Quite by accident, I found that the sequel to this product is on his list for the worst ever OSR games. http://tenfootpole.org/ironspike/?p=3115 Gee, wish I'd read that before running this one.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (SnW)
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WK3 Revenge of the Over-Kobold (PF)
by Martin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/08/2016 09:39:34

The last installment of the Wrath of the Kobolds trilogy begins with the characters returning to the town of Ormkirk which is featured in the first module of the series. The group is welcomed by the new townmaster (assuming the characters managed to find proof of the previous townmaster's involvement in the events of WK1).

As they are dining with Layla Havenstein, the new townmaster, chaos erupts in Ormkirk as a small army of kobolds is attacking the town. As buildings burn and people flee from the kobolds onslaught, there are six events in which the characters can play a role to save Ormkirk, or as much as can be saved. In my opinion, this type of event is usually pretty hard to play in game in which events are turn based. It usually is challenging to convey a sense of everything happening at once and letting the characters decide how to handle the situation. Over the years, I saw many systems to handle such occurrences and each time it felt as if the antagonists were waiting for the characters to arrive before they truly unleash their potential. Here however, an elegant and efficient system is used. Instead of having to count rounds or having a linear series of encounter that does not take into account each of the attacking groups composition (some kobolds have dire weasels with while others are using war chariot pulled by dire goats), each encounter is assigned six different “Destruction Points” score. Depending on the order in which each encounter is tackled, the GM selects a destruction score. For example, the kobolds and their dire weasels will cost the characters one point of destruction if they choose to handle this encounter first. However, if they choose to deal with it after all the other encounters are resolved, then that encounter will cost 6 points of destruction. The genius of the system lies in the fact that other encounters have a different progression. For example, 3 kobolds alchemists are moving around Ormkirk using bombs to destroy buildings. If dealt with early, they cost 3 DPs, but if taken care of last, they cost 13 DPs to account for their destructive potential. A simple and efficient system, I love it! The first chapter is a very good chapter!

After learning that the Over-kobold possesses a suit of armor gifted to him by the God of Kobolds, the second chapter sees the character follow hints and trails to find an artifact that can be used against the over-kobold and his magical armor. After learning that the first Over-kobold was defeated by his own spear on account of gnomish magic, the characters set out to find a reclusive blacksmith living in the Mountains, and who reputedly possesses said spear. Aside from the trip in the mountains, they will have to convince the blacksmith to reforge the spear. That second chapter is ok, but I feel it lacks set encounters. Sure, the characters will have to deal with the Gargoyles trying to prevent them from completing their quests, but without maps, their travels through the mountains will feel like a series of random encounters. Some work on the GM’s part will have to be done in order to render that part of the adventure more interesting. It may be just me, but a few more set encounters and locales might have been nice here.

Whether they have the spear in their possession or just the spearhead, the characters will be guided by the artifact towards Castle Kragtooth, the lair of the Over-kobold. Avoiding or fighting the patrols, they will reach Kargtooth field where an army of kobolds is camped. Each kobold tribe is described (there are four of them) and notes on how to use them and how they act during the day or night are provided. Notes are also provided to provide guidelines on how the characters can sneak into the Castle and avoid notice from the tribes. This is followed by a description of the Castle’s rooms and its inhabitants, with the last part providing notes on facing the Over-kobold himself. This part is also ok and it does have the old-school dungeon crawling feel which is what the module intends to do: provide an old school experience. The Over-kobold himself is an interesting and paranoid adversary. My only complaint here would be that besides the undead in the basement (which is avoided by the kobolds by the way), the opponents are not diversified since the castle hosts the Over-kobold entourage, mostly composed of kobolds. Of course, this is an encampment for a kobold army, so it is expected that most of the encounters will be with kobolds. However, making use of some of the available templates, classes, and archetypes in the Pathfinder game would provide much more diversity and more fun for players. Kobold chiefs and sub-chiefs all have the same statblock i.e. kobolds with warrior levels. After a few encounters, it become apparent that they are all the same even if you modify the description of each kobold.

Overall, not a bad adventure and the first part of the adventure is pretty awesome. Some tweaking is necessary to include a bit of variety and a feeling of realism in the locales and encounters in the rest of the adventure, but the plot is interesting and I feel like having to sneak past an army of kobolds and then find a way in the castle to fight the Over-kobold without raising the alarm is a very challenging task for low-level characters and something they could be proud of should they succeed.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
WK3 Revenge of the Over-Kobold (PF)
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WK2 Curse of the Kobold Eye (PF)
by Martin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/16/2016 11:04:44

This review contains spoilers

This adventure is the second part of the Wrath of the Kobolds series. While you could use it on its own, it is enhanced when used as the follow-up to the first adventure. In the first module, the characters put an end the Kobold Queen’s reign of terror in the Talon Hills. As she dies, she curses them with her last breath. This module begins when the characters start to feel the effects of the curse. This is something I have not seen often in all my years. Characters can find cursed objects and have to get rid of them, but it is rare to have them suffering from a curse. Usually, they help others get rid of their curse.

As the characters become haunted by the spirit of a powerful kobold warlord, they have a chance to figure out what is going on and travel to a place call the Lone Library. This library is located in the Liverswood. When the characters reach the woods, they may notice that it is very creepy. The place is also under curse, like them the spirit of Kra-Moth-Kra, the powerful kobold warlord is encroaching upon the woods. He took hold of a bear and is terrorizing the lone gnome caretaker of the library. The thing is, this gnome is the descendant of the illusionist lords that defeated the kobold armies long ago. Of course, the characters learn this only if they make it to the library. They can help remove the curse from the woods and it is in their best interest to do so as Markar Laan, can create a special elixir that will remove their own curse when it is poured in on the remains of the kobold warlord.

Once their business is over in the Liverswood, the characters will have to travel to the ruins of an ancient gnome city where the tomb of Kra-Moth-Ka is located. There, they may make an alliance with a group of giant badgers, also descendants of badgers allied with the illusionist lords of old. Once they find the kobold warlord’s resting place, they will have to fight him and get to his remains to use the elixir. The adventure ends once the curse is lifted from the characters.

This is a very good adventure with a strong old school feel. First, the characters are personally involved. While they can certainly help others in order to achieve their goal, the fact remains that they do it for themselves. This is rare and very nice to see in a published adventure. Another thing that I like about the adventure is that the manifestations of the kobold spirit have different effects and they are not quantified or explained. What is sometimes frustrating with Pathfinder adventures is that most of the times, effects, consequences, and pretty much everything affecting characters is related to a spell-effect and can be countered with a save. Not so here, the curse affects them, they need help to research a solution, the content of the elixir than will lift the curse is left unexplained and hte only thing they need to know is how to use it. That is old school! I do not think everything needs to be quantified and /or statted to make the game enjoyable. In fact, all that crunch sometimes remove the fun from the game. This adventure is a perfect example of old school. It does not mean it is abusive and the players do not have a word to say, it just means that they know what they need to and that space is not wasted on justifying why things are the way they are.

The only thing I want to complain about is the effects of the curse. It would have been nice to have diverse effects varying in intensity as the characters come close to Kra-Moth-Ka’s tomb. As it is, it is not bad at all. The characters get to face the spirit and it gets stronger. But, I would have liked to see effects like haunts or even have characters suffer penalties while fighting. As it stands, the characters encounter a wraith with a bit more hit points and doing a bit more damage, and with a greater number of weaker undead surrounding it... So, not bad, but other effects would have been nice. That is just me though, it does not make the adventure less enjoyable because of this. Another strong point that this adventure has is that it can be used in any campaign. Indications are provided to help achieve this and the names of locations and NPCs are pretty generic. All in all, a very good adventure!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
WK2 Curse of the Kobold Eye (PF)
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TG0 Depths of the Croaking Grotto (PF)
by Martin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/13/2016 14:47:57

This review contains spoilers

The adventure starts with the characters being hired to find an amulet that is lost in somewhere in the Fell Mountains. A trading caravan was transporting to the amulet through the mountains on its way to the frontier town of Kraden’s Hill. The characters can follow the trail of the attackers (degenerate toad-men) for a short while, but will have to continue exploring the mountains on their own as the trail becomes too hard to follow, if they are to succeed at their mission. Of course, once they find the lair of the toad-men, they will have to fight them to recover the amulet. The adventure ends once the amulet is returned to their patron.

The first thing to understand about this adventure is that it is designed to be “old school”, therefore, not everything is quantified or explained by a magical effect found in one of the core rulebooks. For example, when the characters first arrive to the toad-men they witness their shaman summoning a foul slime toad to prevent them from recovering the amulet. This is not linked to a monster summoning spell or to a specific magic item, rather, the event is used further the story, expose the characters to the power of the amulet when used by a priest of the Toad God, and as a mean to further enhance the story. Having played this game for several years and being “old school” myself, this is something I truly enjoy. Not waste of time trying to figure out if it is “legit”. My most memorable games are the ones where not everything was transparent to the players or explainable by a rule in a book. In any case, it makes for awesome storytelling and a sense of wonder.

The second thing awesome about this adventure is that it is more like an open sandbox. There is a small hexcrawl provided complete a player’s map. Not something you often find in Pathfinder’s adventure, but something that is extremely for players as they get to choose where they want to go.

Lastly, many names and locations are rather generic because the adventure can be used anywhere there is a jungle and a mountain range. There are notes as to how to adapt the adventure to your own world.

Overall, I really liked the adventure. It is created to be played as a small sandbox with only the goal of recovering the amulet. The main antagonists, the degenerate toad-men, are really fearsome foes, their savageness being well rendered; and their lair is very evocative of what you would expect from such weird foes. It is a very challenging adventure I believe though, but one that is very enjoyable!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
TG0 Depths of the Croaking Grotto (PF)
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BF1 Tower of Skulls (SnW)
by Jeremy Z. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/24/2016 04:27:08

This is a pretty good dungeon crawl, with a lot of rooms (a little more than 50) most of which are quite detailed. Combat, traps, exploration, riddles, good mix. But it suffers from being a somewhat poor conversion from 5e or Pathfinder, I guess.

Firstly, some of the monsters are not described. You just get stat blocks at the end, no details about what they look like or what they are. Most notably, what the heck is a Gwiddon?

Secondly, old school games rely on treasure for character advancement. There is almost no treasure in the module. A fair amount of weak magic items, a couple of gems and pieces of jewelry (dog collars) and no monetary treasure.

Lastly, supposedly the module takes place in a single night, but has over 20 combat enounters. The module gives places where characters may take a "short rest", which I guess ia a 5e thing. Most old school games don't have that, healing can take a while, even with magic.

None of these are major issues (except the lack of monster descriptions) but they detract from an otherwise excellent dungeon (well, tower)



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
BF1 Tower of Skulls (SnW)
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Creator Reply:
Thank you so much for the review! I\'m glad you liked it. And you do bring up some very valid points, so I went ahead and shuffled the monster stats around so that the new monsters have descriptions of what they look like a bit of background to them. I also updated the language in a few places to remove long rest - the Rooms of Respite are still viable for regaining spells after resting for some hours in Swords & Wizardry, depending on your game rules obviously! I\'m posting up the updated version here in a moment. Thank you again!
WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (5E)
by Bobby D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/13/2015 12:51:47

The first two modules in this series (WK0 and WK1) are very well thought out and extremely fun for my players. We play them on Roll20 and they fit in perfectly. I will continue to purchase whatever adventures this publisher puts out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (5E)
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WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (5E)
by James R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/13/2015 12:19:20

Friggin awesome, love those guys bringing old school back to some modern rule sets.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (PF)
by Martin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/13/2015 10:40:35

***Spoilers Alert**

This adventure is divided in 4 parts. The adventure begins with the characters arriving in Ormkirk and being offered a job by townmaster Thaddeus Travail: rescue townsfolk from the kobolds lairing in the nearby hills. The characters can ask around to gather more information and doing so may arouse suspicion about the townmaster’s true motives. This part is relatively short and sadly, no map of the town is provided, and we do not get settlement stats. A few other locations are mentioned, but everything is left to be expanded as needed. While not necessary to the completion of the adventure, it would have added some depth to the town to have such information. It does however, leave the GM with a lot of room to place Ormkirk anywhere in any campaign world. That first part focuses on the meeting with the townmaster and the information the characters can get. There is a list of what he knows, but some of the information in the list should not be provided to the players. I think this could have been better ordered with a section on what he keeps to himself and a section of what he is willing to divulge. Something also missing from this part is a DC for Sense Motive checks, or other type of skills. The adventure refers to Social Interaction checks, but there is no difficulty level offered.

The characters can of course investigate the town and ask around to gather more information. Again, no DC is provided but we know how long it takes and how much it costs to get a piece of information. The unfortunate thing here is that the information collected in a list of 10 pieces of information and are arranged in a random table... Considering that some parts reveal a lot about the plot and others are red herring, I feel like a DC for success should have been provided because some information can raise suspicion about the townmaster’s involvement. This can divert the characters to investigate more instead of heading towards the Kobold caves. We get flavor text for each piece of information gathered. This is a refreshing change from what is usually listed in Pathfinder module and helps to illustrate how the group gets the information.

Part 2 is about exploring the hills. We get a random encounter table and there is also a description of how the bandits stalk the characters and how Grabbold deals with them, most likely spilling the beans about his association with Thaddeus Travail. The bandit’s lair is not mapped, although it is described. It would have been nice to have a map of the lair considering that they are a part of the conspiracy. Following the map provided by the townmaster, the characters reach the ambush cave. It is mentioned they can find kobold tracks and wild dogs’ tracks, but we do not get a DC or a suggestion for the check. It is not a big deal, but it feels like a minor omission. Although the cave entrance is guarded by a few kobolds and dogs, we do not know how they react when the characters attack. We know that they are alert, but do they make a stand or retreat to fight with the other ambushers in the main cave?

After realizing that these caves do not corresponds to the kobolds main lair, the characters can move to part 3 in which the main lair is described. The first chambers of the kobolds’ lair are described in more details and are inhabited by the front guard of the kobolds. The second part of the lair is composed of a twisted maze of tunnels. Instead of mapping the whole thing, the adventure suggests a few skills that can be used to navigate the tunnels and a list of random encounters (including traps). What I really like about this part is that a list of modifiers is provided for the check. What is interesting here is that the list contains modifier for the presence of kobold prisoners, based on status in the tribe. Nice! Does this mean that the lower level where the queen is “hiding” can be found with one lucky roll? Well, not really navigating the tunnels to the lower level requires successful four checks! I guess you could be lucky and roll high enough four times in a row, but that would be amazing luck for low-level characters. So, kudos for making the exploration part easy to manage and easy to complete without having to go through a complex dungeon map! The lower levels of the cave complex are where the Queen is conduction her foul sacrifices and where the prisoners are held. I feel like part 3 of the adventure is its strongest element and the best designed. You have interesting challenges and the kobold “flavor” of the lair is well captured.

Part 4 covers the final confrontation with Thaddeus Travail, but nothing more. How the population reacts to the news? What impact does it have to have a town without a leader? Since we do not have settlement stats, we do not know who else may step up to replace the townmaster. While the encounter itself is covered, the impact and repercussions are overlooked.

As with the previous module, the physical attributes (str, dex, etc) and mental attributes (int, wis, etc) are missing from the stat blocks. While it is relatively easy to find the ones for the monster, the major antagonists, like the Townmaster, are harder to deduct. It would have been nice to have that information should the players use spells like Ray of Enfeeblement. In the adventure, we get an NPC profile for each of the three antagonists the characters will be confronting. It is nice to have that background and it helps to play the NPC, but these same profiles are also added with the stat blocks which make it a bit repetitive. One other detail is that the stat blocks do not seem to follow a particular order. It is not that important because there are not that many creatures in the adventure, but does make it a bit longer to find the correct information.

There is a very handy table to create kobold names on the spot. That is very nice since, at least for me, it is not that easy to come up with a name on the spot unless you have a list on hand. Making it random is very useful to avoid repeating the same name. To going over and beyond, there is a table for physical traits for kobold with over 30 traits. Kudos for that!

The module ends with a handy player handout describing a job offering (to start the adventure) and with maps of the kobold caves including the ambush caves. The maps are beautifully drawn but although the scale is indicated, the squares on the maps are barely visible. It makes it hard to draw a map for the players. Depending on your style of play, it may slow the game down unless you take time to determine the scale before play.

Overall, the plot of the module is interesting and it is nice to see how the different partners act according to their own agendas. The exploration of the kobold lairs is the strongest part of the module, with the other parts feeling a bit neglected like the beginning and the end of the adventure. The exploration of the hills is well balanced part. Depending on what you look for in a module, the missing stats and the missing DCs may be details that you wish you had, but the module still does what it sets to do: provide an interesting plot and enough information to make this a good adventure for low level characters. If, however, you do not mind that some part are less polished and that not all information is provided at the level we usually find in most Pathfinder module, then you will have no problem running this adventure. It is important to keep in mind that the ultimate goal is to provide an old school feel to these adventures. I have not read an old module for some time, but I do remember that the story was more important than having stats for everything. That is what we get here, being an older gamer I remember fondly these old modules like B2: Keep on the Borderlands and what we have here is something that has the feel of these modules. So, it may seem contradictory to the rest of my review, but this is a solid adventure even if some parts could have been a bit more polished. I look forward to the next module!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
WK1 Caves of the Kobold Queen (PF)
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WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (5E)
by Paul G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2015 09:54:41

This was a great adventure to start a new campaign with. It stands independently and can easily blend into any long-term campaign. It has a great blend of role-playing, investigation, and action. The pacing forces players to move along quickly and inhibits them from taking rests. My only negative point would be that the final confrontation is not difficult, but my first level players were pretty worn down by the time it occurred. Also, if you play it strictly as written, a TPK is a definite possibility.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (5E)
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WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (PF)
by Martin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/24/2015 14:15:44

If you are a player, please do not read the review as it contains spoilers

This short adventure is intended for 1st level players and is presented as a prelude to a trilogy of adventures not yet published (but successfully funded through Kickstarter). The PCs start the adventure in Cresthill, a town run by Gnomes. The mad kobold, Rinklo, has taken his hatred to the next level and is using his alchemical knowledge to build bombs powerful enough to level an entire building. After one such bomb goes off near the PCs location, Errick, a gnome captain of the guard, asks help from the characters as he is short staffed due celebrations going on in town. If they accept, they can start the investigation by examining the remains of the building and asking questions around. They discover that a suspicious man, identified as a disgruntled guard by Errick, has been seen hanging around the abandoned building sometime ago. They easily find the man and after probably a brief fight, he gives up and reveals that he is involved with Rinklo and also gives up the location of the next three bombs to go off, but he does not know anything more than that. The characters must hurry to catch up with the kobold and prevent all the bombs from going off.

The adventure has a great background story. It is also generic enough that it can be set anywhere in any campaign. Contrary to many short modules, the antagonist, Rinklo, had a string influence growing up and he is a good antagonist for low-level characters. I really enjoy the idea of having a race against time to stop the kobold from completing his plan. A time table has been provided to help the GM know what Rinklo will do next and at which location he will be. This definitely helps to avoid the pitfall of having the characters follow a railroad adventure. The method to keep track of time is elegantly simple and makes the GM’s task a lot easier. Instead of calculating movement in minutes, it is calculated in time segment. Kudos for making it simple! It is also remarkable that combat is not the way to succeed here. Yes, Rinklo will fight if cornered, but his plan can be stopped without a fight. Or course, Rinklo will fight, but his bombs can defused without fighting him. The adventure presents three major NPCs with a well developed background story: Captain Errick Kelver, Bren Kapesh, and, Rinklo. It is easy to understand their motivations and it makes it easier to have them interact with the characters. These are, in my opinion, the strong points of the adventure. I am very details oriented and I noticed a few points that I feel could have improved the module greatly. The first thing I noticed is that the town of Cresthill does not have any stats. Since the adventure does occur over the course of one night, we may not need to have the stats, but I think it would have been good to know the ratio of gnomes vs. other races. There seems to be an interesting social situation where half the town lives in poverty. Does this have an effect on how they view the gnomes? Do they feel like Bren and given the chance would turn on the gnomes? The module does not cover that.

When the adventure starts, the characters must examine the first place that was bombed. Although some indication is given on how to handle this, it would have been nice to have some modifiers for some of the clues based on class and/or race. The checks are based solely on Perception which I find a bit easy as someone without any kind of expertise could find important clues by rolling a high score. That part of the adventure also confuses me a little as the adventurers do not have much incentive to investigate. Or course, they are adventurers, so they probably will agree, but some group may refuse to get involved. One of the hints is a note revealing that the gnomes will pay for their transgressions, but the first building targeted is an abandoned fishmonger shop. Even a kobold as mad as Rinklo would see that this does not hurt the gnomes much. Unless this is a very busy street or it hurts the Kelver family somehow, it may throw off the characters a bit if they focus on figuring out why that particular building was targeted. Contrary to the other locations, it does not seem to be tied in any way to the Kelvers.

Bren Kapesh and Rinklo have combat stats, but we do not have their ability scores. So, if a spellcaster wants to cast Ray of Enfeeblement on Bren for example, we do not know how much this will affect him. Of course, we can deduce that he has 12 or 13 strength based on the bonus on damage and attack. It still would have been nice to have this information. Likewise, when the characters confront Bren, he is helped by a few thugs. His stats are the same as the thugs. Considering his role and the fact that he is described as being a heavy drinker, I feel it would have been appropriate to create a different stat block for him and apply the sickened condition to reflect that he has been drinking.

The race to stop Rinklo truly starts once the characters question Bren. The locations are described briefly and the mean to defuse the bombs is explained. This part is quite good as it is. I do feel however that a few things are missing. While he is in Cresthill and until he can put his plan in motion, rinklo must have been residing somewhere. Although the adventure is designed to be a race against time, players may want to look for the kobold in his lair. It would have been nice to have a small lair with maybe a few other kobolds waiting on Rinklo’s return. He is described as a fiery speaker, so he may have enlisted a few other kobolds when he left. The lair may even contain hints to the last location of the bombs which is not only hard to deduce for the characters, but not necessarily obvious based on what the characters know or can learn.

Another thing that would be interesting is to have a few optional events that the characters may have to deal with throughout the chase. If they are making good time, these could have been used to make things more interesting. Should the buildings get blown, there is also no explanation as to how the inhabitants of Cresthill react. Buildings being blown up and possible casualties will surely create some unrest among the people. This is not covered in the adventure. It would have been nice to have some kind of population reaction scale that would go up if characters fail to stop one or more bombs.

As for the bombs themselves, they are not too hard to defuse but I feel that they are way too powerful for 1st level characters should the party make a mistake, 20d6 of fire damage with no save is pretty tough even for high level characters. GMs should be careful with this. There are ways to diminish or avoid the damage, but a careless or unlucky group will surely result in a TPK if a bomb goes off.

Lastly, the epilogue explains what happens at the end of the night and how captain Errick reacts should the characters succeed or fail. There is however no mention of how the rest of the population or the ruling family reacts. It is hard to believe that should all the bombs go off, people will not ask question, that no one will wonder what happened. I understand that the GM can easily adjust events and that it does not impact the adventure, but it would have been nice to have a few notes in regards to consequences.

Overall, it is a good adventure. Despite all my comments, the adventure achieves what it sets out to do: be a prelude to something larger and cover a one night chase against a mad bomber. Any GM can alter it based on their group’s actions and preferences. I still think the bombs are too powerful for a 1st level party and that a few more events would greatly improve the adventure, but it is still a pretty nice adventure with a very strong background and interesting NPCs. I would not recommend it to a beginner GM however as I feel, some adjustments are needed, but then again, it may just be me being too details oriented. I look forward to the next adventure in this series!



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (PF)
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WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (PF)
by Austin B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/22/2015 15:59:02

this module is a good starting game for low level players with a good background to build upon, and is a fine set up to a much larger over arching game series for you and your party to play around with. it throws out some good ideas and employs Kobolds, one of the most under-rated creatures, as the primary antagonist using bombs and traps to terrerize the party showing the enginuity of these surpringly compatent beings. over all it is a simple adventure that's good for an up and coming gaming group who want to flex some of their investigative stills along with minor combat.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (PF)
by Damian S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/21/2015 14:28:43

The product seems well produced as I have had a quick look upon recieving.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (5E)
by Devin M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/14/2015 14:14:54

A well thought out adventure all on its own ( i have not read other related adventures noted within). It is an excellent blend of investigation and adventure. The descriptions of key characters, key locations, and flavour texts are well descriptive and wonderfully written; Weird Dave does a great job with immersion. The "race against the clock" element is refreshing, a welcome change from the norm, and is incorporated into the adventure brilliantly. A must have.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
WK0 Night of the Mad Kobold (5E)
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