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Sunday, February 17, 2013

Mini Review - Curse of the Weaver Queen (OSR Adventure)



I have had limited exposure to products from EldritchEnt. For those keeping score at home, Lich Dungeon (Level One) was my initial foray into the realm of EE products, and it was less than satisfactory. So, it was with not a small bit of trepidation that I decided to give Curse of the Weaver Queen a peek. It did help that it was written by Time Kask, whose interview by Grognard Games I've been enjoying.

Let me get the usual EldritchEnt criticism out of the way first: I find their alternate game stats annoying and unintuitive. I understand why they've chosen to go with them but that doesn't mean I need to agree with their decision. My second issue is the complete stat block and description of each creature both in their encounter AND as a recap in a monster section. Why? It's annoying in PDF format but I'd feel cheated by the fluffing of the page count if I was buying this in print.

Alright, now that I've gotten that stuff out of the way, Curse of the Weaver Queen isn't a bad adventure.

I like the mechanics suggested for dealing with swarm type attacks. Are they "by the book" or realistic? Probably not, but they look like they should work and definitely would make swarm type attacks playable. I may steal this bit or rework it just a bit for my own campaign.

The adventure itself is actually interesting. I don't mean that as a slight, just an observation. I guess I wasn't expecting much, and this exceeded that. Treasure isn't given in gold and silver pieces - wait, actually, it is, but it's value is occasionally given as something along the lines of "worth the value of a fine blooded stallion and a finely crafted suit of armor, complete with shield and helm". Which when you think of it, is an awesome way to value treasure.

No obscure math riddles either. Sorry, more Lich Dungeon flashbacks.

If this was written using one of the "usual" OSR stat blocks, I'd recommend it. If you can get past the annoying need to translate everything into a "D&D" type format it's a decent adventure. I just find the "Eldritch Language Standard Terminology" annoying. It's a personal prejudice I guess.

From the blurb:


The lunar goddess Arianhrod presides over the great wheel of life. But centuries ago, some saw the Wheel as a Web: a spider's web. And so began the Cult, and so it has festered, hidden, malignant... waiting.

Now they come scuttling out of the dunes at night, silent and deadly. Only a very lucky few have survived the ravaging horde. The bugs. The huge spiders. The Gatherers, taking what is man's and returning to their lair.

That area of the dunes is strange. You'll see. You can find it easily. And with luck, you may live to tell the tale.

Curse of the Weaver Queen uses a generic language compatible with any set of fantasy Rolepleying rules. It is a stand-alone adventure and will easily drop into any existing campaign.

2 comments:

  1. This has got me thinking differently about system-neutral adventures. I don't like the idea re-purposing adventures for S&W White Box that were designed for more elaborate versions of D&D because the idea of "conversion by subtraction" just doesn't sound like much fun. But this type of thing might be just what I'm looking for, particularly if the design isn't over-reliant on the availability of the full range of traditional D&D spells.

    That cover art, though... oh boy.

    ReplyDelete
  2. That is the most demur looking drider ever.

    ReplyDelete

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