Monday, January 2, 2012
The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror, Wild Magic 8
Let me start off by saying that I love the idea behind these modules. The concept of converting a child's story into an adventure was a good one. I fully enjoyed reading them and seeing how the characters and events in the module were handled using game mechanics.
On the flip side as much as I loved reading them and the idea behind them they seem to be one of those great ideas on paper and in planning but when done they don't live up to expectations. The modules can be fun but would require the right group of players in the right mindset. I am certain I would also never use this in an existing ongoing campaign (though I do have an idea how that I will mention at the end).
EX2 "The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror" is the companion piece to Dungeonland. I found that Dungeonland had more of the material I I liked though the inclusion of Humpty and the twins in this module made it memorable as did the Jabberwock. For the record though the Jabberwock deserved a better treatment.
The artwork was not as good in EX2 as it was in EX1. It is not that the art is bad in anyway it is just that I liked the earlier modules art better and there was more there. I am not certain but that he did all of it but James Holloway did most of the art from what I could tell. I like his art and as I said the art was good it was just that EX1 had more and I liked it better.
The module is going to be one that will test the players. Just because the theme is a child's tale the players might want to take it as something they can walk through. Nothing would be further from the truth. If they are not well seasoned players who are familiar with running higher level characters they will most certainly meet with characters dying unless the GM takes pity on them.
As to my idea on how to use these modules. I was thinking of using them as a "Dallas" or "Newhart" TV show situation. Where in the end it was all a dream but used as a test. To make the players even more uncomfortable I thought about making a situation where they had to swap characters they played. This would test them and make all of them uneasy. In the end the possible benefactor who placed them there would allow them to keep some magic item that they got from the adventure but in the end none of it was real.
From the back cover:
Your adventures have taken you to strange places before, but in the eyes of your experienced party, few of these places are as unusual as the bizarre Land Beyond the Magic Mirror. Here the delightful and the light-hearted often hide great challenges and dangers; here you will journey through a landscape unique among fantasy role-playing scenarios.
This module was first conceived by E. Gary Gygax as part of the Greyhawk Castle dungeon complex and has been the source of challenge and fun for many skilled players of the ADVANCED DUNGEONS & DRAGONS(R) game. It is finally available to all players and can be added to your existing campaign with ease.
The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror is designed so that it may be used with its companion scenario, Dungeon Module EX1, Dungeonland. Still, The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror may easily be played on its own, and should offer hours of excitement in its strange landscape!
Wild Magic 8
Area of Effect: Special
Casting Time: Special
Saving Throw: Special
With the casting of this spell the magic user is able to simulate the casting of any eighth or lower level spell. The spell will work best if it is a spell that the caster knows though this is not a requirement.
When this spell is used the caster will be able to use any eighth or lower level magic spell even it is is not one that they memorized or even know. If they have it in their spellbook the spell will go off without problem.
Spells that are not in their spellbook will be trickier. If they have seen the spell cast there is a 50/50 chance that it will work. If the spell fails then there is another 50/50 chance of things happening. It is possible that the spell will just out and out fail. The other is that it works but in reverse and in a negative way for the caster, possibly even affecting them.
The caster can even use this to try and create some new magical effect. The DM may choose not to allow this. If they do then they will need to impose strict limits on its use.
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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