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TSR Example from the worst TSR adventure module(s) ever published


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ErichTheGreen

First Post
Been reading through the old modules from storage, mostly played 1e, haven't played at all since 2e was newish, getting back in now at 5e hence the unearthing. I just re-read this one and noted lots of problematic areas (plus many typos).

But what surprises me is that nobody in 37 pages mentioned that two different treasure hoards each contain a scroll of protection from weretigers. Not just one, but TWO! There are no weretigers in this module to protect against (oops, sorry, spoiler alert), it was something you could roll on the random treasure charts but rolling it TWICE?!?

And then there's the wilderness wandering monsters chart. You're travelling through a typical (European) temperate forest so you expect to see the bears, boars, wolves, wild dogs and then there are the orcs, gnolls, kobolds, skeletons but also some rather weird entries: Baboons? Hyenas? Tigers? TIGERS?!? Did somebody recently empty out a zoo? The weirdest though, has probably got to be the cavemen. It's almost like there's some kind of spatial anomaly in the midst of the woods spitting out creatures from other continents or eras. Or else that gypsy curse is way funkier than anyone realized...

(Also, no-one has mentioned that "gypsy" is now a politically incorrect ethnic slur, something not recognized in the 80s).

However, pencil marks on the player's map & pregen roster indicate I DM-ed this (at least, most of it) back in the 80s without noticing many of these issues, ah, the good old days...
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
But what surprises me is that nobody in 37 pages mentioned that two different treasure hoards each contain a scroll of protection from weretigers. Not just one, but TWO! There are no weretigers in this module to protect against (oops, sorry, spoiler alert), it was something you could roll on the random treasure charts but rolling it TWICE?!?

You noticed that, did you? Uh ohhhh...
InsidiousObedientFugu-size_restricted.gif
 

Lord Shark

Explorer
But what surprises me is that nobody in 37 pages mentioned that two different treasure hoards each contain a scroll of protection from weretigers. Not just one, but TWO! There are no weretigers in this module to protect against (oops, sorry, spoiler alert), it was something you could roll on the random treasure charts but rolling it TWICE?!?

See, that just proves how well the scrolls work. I can also, if you like, sell you this rock that keeps tigers away.
 


Joshua Randall

Adventurer
Reminds me of an old joke...

A psychiatrist gets called to see a patient. Seems the patient will not stop snapping his fingers.

The psychiatrist asks him why he is snapping.

"To keep the tigers away," the patient replies.

The psychiatrist says, "My good sir, we are in New York City. The nearest tigers live in Asia, thousands of miles away."

The patient replies, "See, it's working!"
 


Simplicity

Explorer
Every time I don't find myself somewhere else than ENWorld,
I fail to not find this thread.
It'd be a shame to not reply, so I shan't tarry to do so.
Then I'll return to not banging my head.
 


CapnZapp

Legend
It seems like the author really wants to be a novelist or something.
That's actually more common than you'd think, that people misuse the adventure format even though all they want is to read you a story, having no interest or intention to let the players exhibit free will.

Also, could we move this thread out of the Pathfinder forum? It's a D&D general topic.
 








jayoungr

Legend
Supporter
The module is currently on sale at DMs' Guild. I'm tempted to pick it up just for the laughs...


There's even a 5E conversion guide!

 


Bohandas

Adventurer
Hmmm....writing new encounters is fun, so I'll give it a try :D

------

Encounter #16: The Tormented Knight

As the party enters the clearing in the forest, read the description below:



Thomas (AC 3 [full-plate]; MV 6'; HD 5+1; hp 4; #AT 1; Dmg 1-12 [katana]; % Lair 50%) has been trapped in a cave by an evil ogre that wants to marry his girlfriend. The ogre tried to put William to sleep, but it didn't work, so he trapped him so deep in the cave that nobody could ever find him or even hear him ask for help. Now Thomas is still there, and so he asks the PCs for help.

William would never attack the party or steal their things because he is a man of honour. Roll 1d6. On a 1 or 2, the party is surprised, on a 2 or 3, William steals the PCs' most valuable magic item and runs away, on a roll of 5, he attacks, and on a roll of 6, the ogre is surprised.

If the PCs try to move the rocks to help Thomas escape from the cave, they must succeed at a Strength check. If they fail, then roll 1d6, and consult the following chart:

1- 200 gold gets lost in the rocks
2- A small forest gnome bites the PC's ankles with a THAC0 of 18, dealing 2 damage, then he scampers away
3- The dragon runs away, leaving behind the smoky afterimage of a walrus
4- All of the PCs' magical items are transformed into nymphs, no saving throw. The nymphs will hide in the secret door unless the party has already paid the halfling innkeeper 50 gold, in which case, he locked the door for them
5- The rocks Polymorph into a river--refer to the River encounter above
6- Roll again

If they succeed, Thomas escape from the cave, and he will give them 100 gold and their choice of a potion of Teleport, an oil of Transmute Rock to Mud, or a potion of Phase Door. Afterwards, he asks for their help in defeating the troll, which has just appeared because it was angry that they freed him.

The troll (AC 1 [trolly-hide]; MV 12'; HD 6+3; hp 2; #AT 3; Dmg 1-7 + 5 [ogre smashing]; % Lair 100%) never leaves its lair, and it fights fiercely, though it does not sing or talk companionably to the players.

If it is slain, the PCs discover that the ogre was really not an ogre, but was actually William's girlfriend in disguise, who was a magic-user, and she didn't really like him, so she pretended to be a troll.

If they cut her body open, they will find three pearls, each worth 75 gold pieces, inside of her stomach because she liked to eat pearls whole when she cast the Identify spell, and so she choked on them and died. She won't let the PCs have the pearls normally, unless they defeat the gnolls, in which case she hides in the secret door under the log.

Thomas does not have anything that can be stolen, but if the party slays him, they discover that he is really a girl pretending to be a knight, but they couldn't tell because he was wearing plate mail. No wonder he had so few hit points. That's why the other girl didn't like him because she knew he was a girl. At this point, 1d6 wererats appear and demand that the party surrender the nymphs.
I really like this. It, and the modules it parodies, kind of remind me of when I tried to use GPT-2 to generate biographies for homebrew archfiends

EDIT:
example:
He corrals people (who fear Korath, part of his army), especially those of lesser
strength, and subverts the soul of those he encounters, upending his own nature and
impersonating his enemies. Korath is also one of the great dangers in the world,
even among corrupt mortals, and is accessible only by the wrathful, who would
gather and try and entrap Korath.
Korath embodies an evil that lumbers, evades, and moves undetected throughout the
world. For a narrow reason, those of lesser strength have to be at touch with the
Chaos Gods. To them Korath is base, useless and endless in the Apparition of Chaos.
Way many of the gods, dark and light, obtain pleasure from hoarding possessions
that combine those with malice and lust and have power over mortals. Those who
attempt to achieve a greater ecstasy of sin become young slaves or drown. Those who
can hold a place to the Lesser Evil upper echelons truthfully or with discernment
are free slaves, as those born with uncouthity from the strictures of the Satar or
the Celestial Kingdom suffered from contractions of the Exorcist. Those freedmen
are free tools and slaves of the Star God—even so solipsistic bargain hunters and
the Conjurers have to be thin-skinned, from whose mouths any touch would lead them
down an iniquitous road.
In contrast, those that commit evil agree and order their evil at the whim of Ordo
Moria, a powerful patron deity. A corrupted Ordo Mortis chooses to eviscerate
corruption for the gain of self-preservation in an oppressive world. Those who do
not belong to this prevailing caste are prey to forgettable servitude and
androgyny. Those who are infatuated with emotion hail from an infernal realm whose
tree of life is cold and filled with the essence of death. Those who have faced
persecution or risen against a weakly defended ruler with rage are drawn to the
seat of joy. Those who rule a world with the envy of all others are murdered by a
jealous deity.
Rokkoei Wyssbau is a demigod who takes him and other demons assigned into military
command with great care. He is known both for his prowess in combat and for his
dedication to becameling demons who believe in his unlimited soul spark. He
initially warps his enemies, beginnings for whom he can call upon most charisma,
until they forget about their delusion spread between politicians
 

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