log in or register to remove this ad

 

Desert of Desolation - your experiences?

John Dallman

Adventurer
My experiences with this were ... less satisfactory than most people's. There's a scene where the party come on the remains of a caravan that's been attacked and looted. The merchant who was in charge of it has a large adamantite medallion, clearly visible (why didn't the bandits take it?) and lives just long enough to gasp out a clue, not very clearly.

So we raised him. We had a 9th level cleric, and this seemed to be important. This appeared to disrupt the plot entirely, and it became increasingly confused and annoying. I'll believe the DM was misunderstanding stuff, but it didn't seem like a great adventure to me.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

I've never run the series through to completion, but I've run the first few adventures many times over the years (using both D&D and GURPS). I always loved the flavor and many of the gimicks, though I modified things extensively to fit whatever campaign I was running. I don't think I've gotten more value from any published adventure other than maybe the Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh.
 

ehren37

Adventurer
I wasn't a fan of the "invincible" efreeti boss you can only beat by unleashing an NPC (Martek) to beat it in a cutscene battle while you basically cheer from the sides. I recall us being frustrated by the numerous times we were "paralyzed by box text" as the adventure narrates what happens with the PC's unable to stop it (which seemed to be a Hickman special, given his work on Dragonlance). The guts were pretty good, but the adventure as written was super railroady.
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
16 year old thread, here. No issue with posting in it, of course, but be aware that most of the posters are no longer active on the boards, much less available to respond.
 


16 year old thread, here. No issue with posting in it, of course, but be aware that most of the posters are no longer active on the boards, much less available to respond.
Heh. I was so disappointed when I noticed the date, but then I thought it might rekindle. I have fond memories of this series.
 

pemerton

Legend
I have fond memories of this series.
I've got the three modules but have never played or GMed them. I picked them up second-hand probably 15-ish years ago. I was a bit disappointed when I read them - there's plenty of flavour, but I remember the adventures themselves being dungeon crawls.

I think my analogue of your "fond memories" is B2 Keep on the Borderlands!
 

You know, after reading this thread, I wonder how they would hold up now. The last time I ran them using D&D rules was in the early '90s. I converted the pyramid one (Pharaoh?) to GURPS and used it a few years later, but it was heavily modified.

But I do have a soft spot for good dungeon crawls. What I liked about these crawls was that there were plenty of puzzles and things to figure out. I have dim recollections of much fun being had trying to map the misty maze, dealing with reverse gravity, locating some sort of heart, etc.

I have great memories of B2 as well, though I must admit that the actual caves were never that inspiring for me. Too many monsters too close to each other.
 

pemerton

Legend
You know, after reading this thread, I wonder how they would hold up now. The last time I ran them using D&D rules was in the early '90s. I converted the pyramid one (Pharaoh?) to GURPS and used it a few years later, but it was heavily modified.
That would have been a big task!

I have great memories of B2 as well, though I must admit that the actual caves were never that inspiring for me. Too many monsters too close to each other.
The weird thing is I don't think I've ever used the Caves beyond various adaptations of the cult temple part. I just like the Keep itself, especially the smooth-talking chaotic priest!
 
Last edited:

The weird thing is I don't think I've ever used the Caves beyond various adaptations of the cult temple part. I just like the Keep itself, especially the smooth-talking chaotic priest!
Yes! The Keep itself is amazing and the cult temple was always my favorite part of the caves. I just reread the original recently. Definitely a lot of great material in there.
 


Marc_C

Solo Role Playing
IIRC the first dungeon (Pharaoh) contains a secret passage at the beginning that leads directly to the final treasure room. We found it after 10 minutes of play, took the treasure and left the pyramid. Module done!

Which infuriated the DM since he spent several days translating it from English to French to understand it. Later, I learned he found another group to play it from beginning to end.
 

IIRC the first dungeon (Pharaoh) contains a secret passage at the beginning that leads directly to the final treasure room. We found it after 10 minutes of play, took the treasure and left the pyramid. Module done!

Which infuriated the DM since he spent several days translating it from English to French to understand it. Later, I learned he found another group to play it from beginning to end.

Hmm. This doesn't match any version of the module that I've seen. There are lots of secret doors. There is a false tomb hidden behind a few secret doors, but it was intended to fool would-be looters. It had apparently already been looted so that thieves would leave. Other than that, it's quite a journey to get to the real final treasure room.

Come to think of it, there may be a one-way teleporter back from the final chamber to the opening temple. Maybe your DM misread the key somehow?
 

Marc_C

Solo Role Playing
Hmm. This doesn't match any version of the module that I've seen. There are lots of secret doors. There is a false tomb hidden behind a few secret doors, but it was intended to fool would-be looters. It had apparently already been looted so that thieves would leave. Other than that, it's quite a journey to get to the real final treasure room.

Come to think of it, there may be a one-way teleporter back from the final chamber to the opening temple. Maybe your DM misread the key somehow?
That is possible since he translated everything to French using a dictionary. His English was not very good at the time.
 

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top