DF26: The Forgotten City of Al-Arin

df26

by John Riley
Freely distributed by Dragonsfoot
AD&D
Levels 10-14

Hordes of Dragon Flights have been seen over various locations in the Desert, dropping explosive devices

I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer. I am an objective reviewer.
I’m testing out a new interactive review format and you, gentle readers, can help. After each sentence you, the reader, should repeat to yourself “This is the stupidest module EVAR.”

Everything you need to know about this module is contained in that first sentence: hordes of dragons carpet bombing places with homemade explosives. It could have been cool gonzo, but unfortunately a brief perusal led me to the map for dungeon level 2 which prominently features a Grandstand. Did I mention that the first encounter is with 10 ancient red dragons? Thank you, DF26, for restoring my prejudicial view of free web modules.

Uh, so, flights of dragons are dropping bombs on cities and always head back in the same direction, towards the ruined city of Al-Arin. The party sees a city in ruins, except for a might dragon statue at the center, and a bunch of red dragons. The dungeon has seven levels. Level one has eleven rooms in a linear layout. Level 2 has 13 encounters … and the grandstand. Level three has an Oriental Adventures theme and has 30 encounters. Level four has six in a symmetrical layout. Level five has eight in a symmetrical layout. Level six has eight and level seven/eight has four or five. Don’t get excited, the levels are very simple and the maps not interesting. The secret doors lead to traps, for example. The closest comparison would be a funhouse dungeon, except I don’t think this is supposed to be that.

The first room has a save or die trap. In fact, the first three rooms have very deadly traps. Rooms four and five feature statues that animate and challenge the players to single combat, with five also featuring a save or die “take the place of the challenger” bullshit. The spells required to get past it are mostly beyond the ability of a level 14 party, or on the edge of it. You need Wish, Limited Wish, Alter Reality, Temporal Stasis, etc. Room seven make everyone blind, deaf, and trapped in a cube of force. Rooms eight and nine feature pits-like traps that teleport you to the drop again. Oh, and the dungeon started with a pit that deposits you in the abyss after three of falling. Blah blah blah. Save or die. Bah blah blah take 1-100 damage each round until dead. Etc, etc, etc. Level two is actually on the true neutral plane and has the hierophant druid hanging out, for no particular reason. Oh, and Tiamat as a wandering monster.

Back to this shitty module. Level something has a dragon in gold-rimmed glasses acting as a secretary and five rooms which have 12 ancient red dragons Wait, hang on. One 7HD dragon, one 6 HD dragon and 10 5 HD dragons. I stand corrected. Room 7 has Tiamat in it. Oh, and room two has the Invulnerable Coat of Arnd in it. Level whatever does have a naked elf chick in it so , hey, How you doing baby? The players eventually face Teronus the ULTIMATE DRAGON. He teleports away though and the players get teleported/trapped in a room in which they die in 48 hours. Or they could figure out that one wall of the room is only 30; away from a great underground sea. Finally they get to climb the unending stair (what was that called in LOTR? Durins’ Stair?) and get to fight Teronus for real and free Baphamut. Except it’s not for real and THEN they get to fight him for real. If the arty ever fails or takes too long then the carpet-bombing dragons win and Tharizdun gets released. Whoops. Have fun kids.

I recently watched Top Gears ‘Worst Car in History’ show. They made the point that the REAL worst car was a clunker from a manufacturer who should have known better Dragonsfoot should have know better This is a piece of shit.There’s a trap in almost every room. A LARGE number are save or die, and the ones that are not deal significant damage EaCH ROUND. IE: 1-100. I’m not really sure what kind of party is meant to adventure here. It certainly doesn’t seem anything like the same danger levels found in S3 or Q1. The one cool thing in this module is a trap where the characters hands get melted/stuck to a bar. Ouch! Otherwise it’s noting more than a crapton of silly funhouse situations poorly done, a shit ton of save or die/massive damage traps, and a lot … a WHOLE lot, of elder dragons. Alphonso Warden is Joyce in comparison.

Here’s the first level, for your amusement:
0. 10 red dragons
1. Save or die
2. Save for 25/50/75 damage
3. 1-3 per round until 40STR lifts a block
4. Statue champion fight you
5. Save or die/become the guardian. Happens multiple times. Need Wish, etc.
6. Nothing
7. Deaf/blind in a cube of force
8. Sucked in to teleport pit, 5-60damage
9. Sucked in to falling down stairs/teleporter. 20-120 damage
10. 1-100 damage per round
11. save vs 200′ fall

And here’s level 5: (30% chance of each being present)
1. Red Dragon
2. 12 black dragons (coat of arnd)
3. 12 blue dragons
4. 12 green dragons
5. 12 red dragons
6. 12 white dragons
7. Tiamat

This entry was posted in Reviews. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to DF26: The Forgotten City of Al-Arin

  1. Melan says:

    So Dragonsfoot actually edited and published this thing? Whoa.

Leave a Reply