Monday, October 11, 2010

Review - Strange Destinies Solo Adventure (for Tunnels & Trolls)

I'm on a bit of a Tunnels & Trolls kick, so you'll need to forgive me.  Still, before I dive head first into this review, you do realize you can download a free (abbreviated but complete and usable) version of the rules and can get free solo adventures for Tunnels & Trolls here, here, here and here.  Phew!

As I wrote last night, the fiancee played thru a T&T solo last night.  She had fun and got the taste of what roleplaying is about.  We used the adventure Strange Destinies, which was included in the Tunnels & Trolls 7.5e boxed set (I'll give that a proper review shortly).

First the good.  Atmosphere was great.  She really got into the mood when I read the pieces that set the scene.  When the player actually shivers with a description, you hit the right points.  Nice recap in the beginning of the adventure detailing saving rolls and such.  All in all, it was fun...

There is a "but" that needs to be added there.  This is NOT an adventure for the average beginning player character warrior type.  It is lethal, almost to the point of "why bother to roll the dice".  Case in point.  Rachel rolled triples on the score she assigned to STR.  The total was a 26, doubled as a dwarf to a 52.  She was a formidable warrior, and according to the 7.5e rules a 5th level character.  Her first encounter was with 1 Giant Bloodworm (MR 120).  It rolls 13d6 in combat with +60 adds.  The Dwarven Warrior Sheba was armed with a short sword for 3d6 and +48 adds (she also had 10 pts of armor, doubled to 20 for being a warrior).  Average rolls with adds would have been 105 for the Giant Bloodworm and 60 for Sheba.  45 damage less 20 for armor means 25 points of damage to Sheba in the average combat round not including Spite Damage.  Heck there was a 50% chance of here encountering 2 Giant Bloodworms at a pop, which would have been insta death.

My solution was to halve the MR of all the creatures encountered.  Even with that, Spite damage and combat rolls left her with 8 points left of her initial 28 CON when she found her way out.  As written, not a really good way to introduce a new player to the rules or to RPGs. as dying without a chance in the first encounter isn't much fun.  Which is a shame, because the T&T rules themselves are much fun (as was the adventure after I waved the GM Wand of Monster Nerfing).

So, nerf the monsters and you have a viable solo adventure for a warrior with decent combat adds.  It was fun, don't get me wrong, but you need to adjust it to make it work.  Or maybe run it with more then one PC.

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  1. I bought the same box set a little while ago and haven't had a chance to look at it too closely. Glad your posting on it.

  2. I like it a lot. It may be my Go To Game for Fantasy Grounds gaming. Simple, flexible and doest take itself too serious. Perfect for irregular gaming I think. I'll be posting more on it this week.

  3. It does say in the intro that this is really an adventure for ogres and trolls and other big creatures. However, cutting the Monster Rating down to something you can handle is a perfectly viable way of playing dungeons that are too tough.

  4. @atroll - point taken. Still the Adventure is restricted to level 3 warriors and below, and as level is now stat based, the Dwarf's 52 STR would have made her 5th level... and I still had to halve the MRs ;)


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