Donnerstag, 10. Mai 2012

"Drachentöter" Adventure Review

Just the other day my group managed to finish the first adventure in our new "The dark eye" / "Das Schwarze Auge" campaign and as their game master I feel tempted to try and write a review for it. First off let me mention that the adventure in question, just like most publications of the DSA RPG is only available in German. Still I will write my review in English, in regard to the diverse origin of this blog's visitors.


"Drachentöter" which can be translated as "Dragonslayer" is a short adventure, of about 19 pages, and part of the anthology "Stadtstreicher". It is written for the DSA4 rule system, but could be, in my opinion, an enrichment for any game.

 Cover of the adventure anthology Stadtstreicher by Ulisses Spiele

In this adventure the heroes aide a couple of tavern owners who just opened their tavern with a wide variety of problems ranging from competition and racketeering to haunts among other things. This already suggests that this is an urban adventure, but it is not tied to any specific town. With a little work by the game master it can be placed in almost any town of the setting. As a matter of fact I placed it in the town of Andergast, capitol of the kingdom going by the same name and probably best described as both slightly backwoods and backwater.

The adventure manages to combine a number of small plots in interesting ways and still leaves room for the game master to add a plot hook or two of his own. The individual plots can be pursued on their own, one after another or at the same time. I'd like to think my group enjoyed working on more than one plot, sometimes unwittingly until they figured it out, without a pressing need to go and save the world.

The book provides information for events that already have transpired and events that might yet transpire as the heroes uncover the individual plots. This includes information on how to handle it if a group of particular clever or crafty characters or players manage to derail your carefully laid plans. This information includes among other things flavorful descriptions and black & white illustrations of the various locations the heroes can visit and the numerous NPCs they can interact with and their relationships.

The adventure offers exploration, investigation and social interaction as well as combat encounters in a very balanced mix. During its course every character should have a chance to shine. And although I called it a short adventure, it took my group and me the better part of six sessions of variable length to bring it to its conclusion. Don't let the low page count fool you.

The only slight problem I had running this adventure was with the combat statistics provided for the very few combat encounters. Some of the numbers didn't quite add up for me. And anyone wanting to run this module for their group should be advised to read it throughout as the numerous plots and their twists are potentially as much of a challenge for an ill prepared GM as for the players.

Let me know if you liked this review or found it helpful. Don't be shy and tell me if you think I could do better in one way or another.

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