by Giuluano Roverato
Roll 4 Tarrasque
An unnatural cold has taken hold of this land and refugees tell tales of both gold and horror. Will you loot the remnants of this once lush province or try to save it?
This is one of them there new fangled tri-fold adventure gimmicks. I was gonna ignore this development but a reader asked and I’m currently in a Regional Resources mood. It’s got a weird vibe going, pseudo-japanese mixed with a weird non-Gross Carcosa thing that gives that odd vibe in the same way Dark Sun did. As a series of ideas it’s ok. As a framework for something like A Fiasco Playset, or the equivalent for light story gaming it’s ok.
There’s a village on the border of an ever-expanding freezing region. There are 8 locations in a region that’s 6 days travel by 6 days travel in size. It’s large to reinforce the cold damage and it’s sparse because it’s a tri-fold. Thus my pointer to more abstract-like games and/or using this to develop your own ideas/region.
There’s a one-page village/NPC description and about one page of wandering monsters/exploration guidelines. Two pages of locations, including a map, and one page of magic items in addition to the cover make up the six tri-fold pages.
The encounters have a weird vibe to them, with that pseudo-japanese thing going on. Shitake soup, sakura trees, monkeys bathing a hot spring … one with a rifle. And there’s that weirdness I mentioned. Frozen monks, with centipedes that burst out of their eyeballs. A frozen giant carp with a human face. It’s brining the weird and generally interactive, although almost all of them have a significant slant towards combat. They are solid ideas though and deserve more than aa sentence on a pamphlet. Come to think of it, they remind me a lot of the hex descriptions/encounters in the Wilderlands products, with perhaps a slightly more combat focus. Generally interactive or, maybe, it’s easy to craft something larger around them and you can see the energy in them. They do tend to a more abstract language style though and would be stronger if they used more specific words and/or colorful language. “Clearly overworked”, “a foreigner to these lands”, and so on. Some word choice changes would have done wonder to make things pop more.
As a format the tri-folds are probably less useful than one-pagers; the folding, detracts from space. Maybe there’s some usefulness in these sorts of things for more abstracted games. For this one, specifically, there’s interesting situations and writing but they are constrained by the limitations of the format.
This is $2 at DriveThru. You get a one page preview, which is half the product, and is nicely representative of the writing.
Also, Gus says we should be making everything free.