Friday, March 27, 2015

Princes of the Apocalypse is in my hands

I now have The Temple of Elemental Evil Princes of the Apocalypse in my hands, thanks to the FLGS which participates in that Wizards Play Network. It looks like Magic must have had a release too, there seemed to be a horde of card players at the store.

I'm currently reading through it, but wanted to provide some observations for those interested in the contents:

Page Count: The module is 256 pages long. Of that total 187 pages is devoted to the actual scenario, about 39 pages to monster and NPC stat blocks plus magic items, and additional appendices including the genasai player race, new spells and a section on adapting the module to other D&D worlds make up the difference (30 pages). This last part is especially interesting, offering advice on how to stick the module in Dragonlance, Greyhawk, Dark Sun, Eberron and your own world of choice.

Player Stuff: Genasai are in here, but only the genasai; don't delete your Player's Companion, it's the only place you can get aarakocra, deep gnomes and goliath stats.

Level Range: the book says it supports levels 1-15. It does not seem to use milestones like the prior modules did (if it does I haven't found the reference yet)'s the doesn't say it takes you from level 1-15, just that it supports that level of play. Interestingly Chapter 6 includes a low level introductory module if your PCs are starting at levels 1-2 (level 3 is Chapter 1's optimal starting point), as well as a menagerie of side quests the DM can include to break up the main storyline periodically with various side-quests for the PCs to do as he sees fit. Interesting approach.

The Elemental Princes of Evil: all four of them get new Forgotten Realms-themed cults and details, followers, and best of all complete stat blocks. These are some tough hombres. Considering I've been using them (thanks to the Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle I've been running) in my Pergerron campaign, if I can miraculously get my player group to not read this book I may be able to run it eventually.

I may or may not talk more about this one, but I have to say it does look like a very robust, open campaign with lots of stuff to do and explore, and I'm not totally sure yet but it looks like they thematically aimed for a design closer to the Basic Set module (open exploration) than anything else....the Dessarin Valley even has a hex grid overlay, to accompany some robust encounter charts and side quests.

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