Saturday, September 17, 2011
What's That Smell? , Improved Magic Mouth
The multi-module concept is supposed to allow the same module to be run multiple times and each will be different. It sets forth to accomplish this by strategic elements in the module being variable and letting the GM choose between them and then the module will flow differently from there. I like this idea though I see it as more of a benefit for the DM as there is rarely a reason to run the same module for the same group more than once.
The adventure portion of the module is broken down into two parts. The first is the village of Nobbletog Grove. This is normally a thriving halfling village that the adventures now find abandoned. The module uses this part to set up a feeling of uneasiness and dread. There are suggestions provided in the module to further this along. The adventurers will also find clues here that will aid them in the second portion.
The second part of the adventure will be the catacombs that are below Nobbletog Grove. The reason for the village being deserted is located in the catacombs. Without giving too much away the cause is a spell that has gone wrong and opened a portal to a space between worlds. Being a fan of Lovecraft I love the idea of extra-dimensional beings as antagonists. The weirder the better and a fine job of making them weird is done in the module.
Under the multi-module concepts much of the adventure is variable. This includes the maps. The effect of the portal causes the rooms to shift locations. I am going to steal this idea for a dungeon sometime and merge it with the movie Cube....back to the review though. The dungeon portion is a little on the smallish side will be more than enough for a nights playtime. The maps are presented in a geomorph format which can be copied and enlarged and then used as needed.
The module will end up throwing some curve balls at the adventuring party. These could end up causing a TPK situation if the DM plays it right and to its full extent. I would temper this in some fashion. It might even be possible for the players to figure out what is going on first and turn the tables on what is suggested in the module.
At the end of the module there are a number of appendixes that will aid the GM in running the module and understanding how various portions should be played. They will also contain stat blocks for the new creatures and information on the NPCs the module contains. There are also a number of tables spread throughout the module which a DM could take and use later for other purposes.
One final note is about the encounters in the module. Each is presented in a four part fashion. The first is the "Run-down" which will provide the DM information on the encounter and what it is about in game terms. The second is the "Set-up" which will feature the traditional real aloud portion that seems to be ever present in modules anymore. The third is the "Action" section that describes the events that could happen in the encounter. The fourth and final is the "Follow-up" which suggests the possible means to further the adventure along. I got the feeling it was close to being a script and in this module naming the characters Gorman, Vasquez, Hudson and Hicks might be appropriate.
Improved Magic Mouth
Ares of Effect: One Object
Casting Time: 2 Segments + Other Casting Time
Saving Throw: Special
This spell allows the magic user to cast a version of the standard Magic Mouth spell. This version will be in all ways identical to the original spell except that it will allow the Mouth to carry a spell payload.
The spell will still only allow the mouth to speak for a message of twenty-five words which can last no longer than one turn. The trigger effect can also be either very simple or very complex based on the desire of the caster. The trigger event also must occur within the range based on the level but can be made to be less than that. The material component is still the piece of honeycomb but the other spells components will be required as well.
The difference is that this version will have the mouth reactivate the round after the message is delivered. It will then cast the spell the magic user cast into it. There is no save for the magic mouth but the cast spell will have its normal saving throw.
Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up or conceived of back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.
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