Posted on March 5, 2009 by GRIM
While a lot of third party publishers have been very cautious about the GSL and 4th Edition, Goodman Games seems to have dived right in and gotten going on the very type of thing that WOTC has wanted publishers to do all the time, publish adventures. ‘In Search of Adventure’ would appear to be a sort of introduction to the line, a 120-odd page book of first level adventures.
There are six adventures listed within the book, all aimed for parties of first level adventurers. These are:
* King Dretch – Wherein a powerful dretch has taken up residence within a ruined Wizard’s tower and requires eviction.
* Children of the Snake God – Wherein a temple in a lost Oasis requires looting and pillaging.
* The Scorpion Queen – Wherein a village is under siege from the forces of a mysterious pyramid.
* The Forbidden Crypt – Wherein the adventurers stumble upon an ancient network of tombs, and those who’ve come to rob them.
* Legacy of the Labyrinth – Wherein the adventurers uncover an ancient prison and the strange forces at work within.
* Tides of Doom – Wherein a cult is usurping control of a town and turning it to the purposes of ancient evil.
And the book wraps up with all the ‘new’ Monsters that have been introduced in the text, including some familiar faces like the Ankheg.
The artwork is of good quality, though a little sparse and doesn’t always seem entirely connected with the page or adventure it is illustrating. The maps are very clear and of reasonable quality though I would have liked to have seen them drawn a little bugger on the page so that they could have been blown up and printed more easily for use as a play aid.
These aren’t exactly going to blow anyone away on the creativity front, these are all pretty basic, bog-standard dungeon bashes with enough thematic twists to keep them interesting. Only Tides of Doom really steps away from the ‘find a dungeon, raid it’ theme but there’s nothing necessarily wrong with that, especially for starting adventures when people are getting used to the feel of their characters – or even the game. This is a workmanlike product that does what it says on the tin. The long term usage comes from the useful table of new monsters that come in the back and which can definately see some re-use in adventures of your own concoction.
The creatures seem balanced and interesting and the rules in the adventures themselves don’t really step outside of any comfort zones or into any particularly new territory. Everything appears to work and the rules are presented in a very easy-access way for the presiding Games Master meaning that most of these adventures could be run with minimal preparation.
This is a sold, workmanlike product. While the adventures aren’t destined to be classic by any stretch they’re a perfect introduction to the game and a good start for new adventurers though the settings of the adventures, being so geographically and culturally diverse, may be difficult to string into a campaign – if you were so inclined.
* Good opening adventures for any group.
* Presented with the GM firmly in mind.
* Useful monsters increase longevity.
* Illustration a little confused.
* Good, but not brilliant.
Review by James ‘Grim’ Desborough