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Argyle King

Legend
1. "In a small village, in an obscure kingdom..." There shouldn't be a comma in between village and in.
2. "This horrible curse is sickening the inhabitants until they finally die." is written poorly. "This horrible curse is causing the inhabitants to sicken and die."
3. "...and your companions are brave, and hunger..." doesn't need that comma.
4. "While traveling among the Realms..." Realms shouldn't be capitalized unless it's referring to a specific name like the Forgotten Realms. They may have been referring to a proper name, but with their track history...
5. "...and seek a small Inn to find rest in." Inn should not be capitalized there and the last "in" just sounds funky. Leave it off.
6. "However soon after arriving..." There should be a comma after however.
7. "...this curse, and at the same time save the world even from possible doom." You don't need the comma between curse and and. Further, the word "even" shouldn't be in that sentence. It should just be, "..save the world from possible doom." Not that level 1-2 PCs should be saving the world in any case, but that's a different issue.
8. "The Cult of Abaddon is an adventure written for a small party of 4 for levels 1 to 2..." That makes my head hurt. "The Cult of Abaddon is an adventure written for 4 adventurers of levels 1-2..."

I agree with most of this, but #1 is debatable.

Personally, I would eliminate the part between the commas, but it's not technically wrong.
 

toucanbuzz

No rule is inviolate
  1. "Red Hand" is often associated with radical political stances, could be interpreted as a veiled dig at WOTC and its support of all persons regardless of their sexuality, and how it is poisoning the tiny village community (aka enworld) of Morrus.
  2. Grammar issues as pointed out by @Maxperson. The synopsis reads like it was written by a middle-school student.
  3. Cover page has a horrible sentence. "Something poisoning the people of this tiny village and the party needs to investigate to find out what the cause of this?" Should be "is poisoning", "what is the cause," and should not end in a question mark.
  4. Underdark use likely violates the Open Game License. [edit, copyright]. You'll find the wording here.
  5. Same with the capitalized Realms. While omitting the word "Forgotten," the capitalizing of the word is suggestive of the most well-known setting for D&D and is an awkward choice of words otherwise.
  6. Wincen in his twitter feed observed the cover art is already used on another product. Photo here. Amateur hour, and he's critical that they don't appear to give the artist credit.
  7. He also links the likelihood (captured on discord and removed by the Dungeon Hobby Shop museum) the cover page logo is not their registered trademark.
 
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Voadam

Legend
  1. Underdark use violates the Open Game License. You'll find the wording here.
  2. Same with the capitalized Realms. While omitting the word "Forgotten," the capitalizing of the word is suggestive of the most well-known setting for D&D and is an awkward choice of words otherwise.
Not quite.

It would appear to violate the PI designation in the 5e SRD put out under the OGL, and under the OGL if they use the 5e SRD then they must comply with the 5e PI designation.

An OSR product is likely to not use the 5e SRD though and the original SRDs did not have the specified PI designations. If they are using the OGL at all.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Not quite.

It would appear to violate the PI designation in the 5e SRD put out under the OGL, and under the OGL if they use the 5e SRD then they must comply with the 5e PI designation.

An OSR product is likely to not use the 5e SRD though and the original SRDs did not have the specified PI designations. If they are using the OGL at all.
Yeah, there’s no way to know if they’re even using the OGL Well, not without buying it and taking a look, at least.
 


el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
I just want it noted that I had an NPC named Morrus as mayor (well, alderman) of a village in a D&D campaign I ran way back in 2001.

An excerpt from the story hour of said campaign:

Balem, 12th of Syet – 564 H.E.

There was less wind this day, which made the cold bearable. They were crossing a snow-filled plain, and passed no signs of life. At mid-morning they crossed a stone bridge that went over what must be (according to the map) the Kelzain Stream. Ratchis then turned them on a more northerly course.

As the day waned they crossed wagon ruts running east/west in the hard earth, and further on they could see the tell-tale signs of civilization atop the nearby foothills. As they climbed up a steep trail Ratchis discovered, they could see the thatched roofs of yurts.

Ram’s Head was a village atop a plateau in the shadow of a tall dark mountain scored with paths and ledges. All the buildings were low round builds of log and thatch, with a corral nearby. The muddy streets were strewn with straw and the droppings of sheep and goats.

They knocked on a random door and Martin asked which house belonged to the Alderman, and followed the directions there, after finding out his name was Morrus..

Martin knocked on the door to the alderman’s Yurt. The voice of boy came from behind the door, “Who’s there?”

“My name is Martin the Green. I am a Watch-Mage and am working for King Brevelan Goth III. My companions and I have come to see the Alderman.”

There was a pause and then another, deeper, voice said, “Do you have proof you are who you say you are?”
“I have a letter of introduction from the King,” replied Martin.

“Slide it under the door,” the voice said.

Martin paused and looked at the others. Jana shrugged her shoulders, and then the Watch-Mage slid the letter beneath the door.

The waited a few moments and then finally the door slowly opened. A tall man with graying dark brown hair in rustic clothing of leather and wool answered the door. Ratchis immediately noticed the hand axe he held low to one side. He looked perhaps in his early forties, but his arms and chest looked very muscular, his face was care-worn.

“My name is Morrus. I am the alderman of Ram’s Head,” the man said, and then gestured to the boy of about fifteen years behind him. “This is my son William.”

The alderman handed the letter back to Martin and showed the party in. “I’m sorry about my initial greeting, but one cannot be too careful in this part of Gothanius,” Morrus said. “Between gnolls from the north and bandits, it can be very dangerous. But that is done with, I am sorry that my home is not as nice as some other alderman’s places, but Ram’s Head is a humble village. However, you are welcome to stay here the night.”

“We greatly appreciate your hospitality,” said Martin the Green.

“William,” said Morrus to his son. “Take care of their pack animal and then bring in more firewood.”

“Yes, sir,” the boy said and ran out.

“Have a seat around the fire,” Morrus said to the group. “Make yourselves at home, though I’d like to learn all your names.”

The party spread out around the fire pit in the center of the one room building, and told the alderman their names.
The floor was dirt, but covered in fur blankets and burlap pillows. The smell of something cooking in a pot above the central fire, just barely smothered the smell of a barn.

“So you are the new Watch-Mage, and are on your way to Summit,” Morrus said.

“Yes, my companions are seeing that I get there safely, where I can help to aid and oversee the hunting of the dragon,” replied Martin.

“So Summit is getting a Watch-Mage then. It figures,” said Morrus with a sigh. “Aside from the dragon that place is relatively safe since the Orc War finished and pretty wealthy. Here in Ram’s Head, we struggle to just get by.”
There was an awkward silence.

“Of course, some aldermen have more favor than others. They are more popular, invited to Royal Balls and get whatever they want, while others suffer,” Morrus continued, until he caught himself. “Not that I am placing the blame in any one place. His Majesty the king, does a very good job, and I am sure he knows what he is doing sending you to Summit to overlook this project of his, but when it is done, I wonder what will become of you.”

“Well, I am only the interim Watch-Mage. I am sure such a decision will be made when the time is right and another alumnus of the Academy is assigned to Gothanius,” said Martin the Green.

Morrus stirred the contents of the pot and then began serving it into wooden bowls.

“It is a local favorite,” he said. “Stuffed intestines stewed in a black sauce.”

“We have something very similar in the part of Thricia where I am from,” said Martin.

William came back in and immediate began to pour the group wine from a gourd.

“You mentioned gnolls before, do they come to these parts often?” asked Ratchis.

“They come down from the north in the winter. The harsher the winter, the more frequent and devastating their attacks. They come looking for food, which can be livestock, but can also be people,” explained Morrus. “Every man in this village has learned to fight because of this and I lead the militia, but we still lose about a half dozen men every year, if not more.”

“Oh,” said Ratchis, and turned to his bowl of black steaming entrails.

The party ate hungrily and then their full stomachs and the warmth of the Yurt took over and they dropped off to sleep one by one.
 





SkidAce

Legend
Supporter
1. "In a small village, in an obscure kingdom..." There shouldn't be a comma in between village and in.
2. "This horrible curse is sickening the inhabitants until they finally die." is written poorly. "This horrible curse is causing the inhabitants to sicken and die."
3. "...and your companions are brave, and hunger..." doesn't need that comma.
4. "While traveling among the Realms..." Realms shouldn't be capitalized unless it's referring to a specific name like the Forgotten Realms. They may have been referring to a proper name, but with their track history...
5. "...and seek a small Inn to find rest in." Inn should not be capitalized there and the last "in" just sounds funky. Leave it off.
6. "However soon after arriving..." There should be a comma after however.
7. "...this curse, and at the same time save the world even from possible doom." You don't need the comma between curse and and. Further, the word "even" shouldn't be in that sentence. It should just be, "..save the world from possible doom." Not that level 1-2 PCs should be saving the world in any case, but that's a different issue.
8. "The Cult of Abaddon is an adventure written for a small party of 4 for levels 1 to 2..." That makes my head hurt. "The Cult of Abaddon is an adventure written for 4 adventurers of levels 1-2..."
Okay friend, leave the dramatic "pause" comma alone. Next thing you know you will be critiquing the Oxford comma.

:LOL:
 

Divine1943

Explorer
The point that he is making is about the trope of well poisoning: Persecution of Jews during the Black Death - Wikipedia

But it's an aside in the thread, and he admits that it is conjecture

edit: fixed!
It’s pearl clutching on top of making absolutely ignorant comparison. You can hate on who ever this NuTSR weirdo is, but you can do it without saying stupid stuff like this. It could also be a Final Fantasy 6 reference, they had a well poisoning scene in that!

see, see how stupid that looks?
 


It’s pearl clutching on top of making absolutely ignorant comparison. You can hate on who ever this NuTSR weirdo is, but you can do it without saying stupid stuff like this. It could also be a Final Fantasy 6 reference, they had a well poisoning scene in that!

see, see how stupid that looks?
Indeed, I think if anything the marginalized group most closely associated with false accusations of well poisoning in the middle ages was lepers (I read an academic article on it at some point, but can't remember the details). And really if I was going to look for a reason why someone would write a fantasy story involving a cult poisoning a well, and somehow the common fantasy trope of that happening and a clunky allegorical reference to supposed toxicity of the community of "Morrus" didn't explain it, I'd just guess that the author used some of their pandemic downtime to binge the Wild, Wild Country documentary series on the Rajneeshpuram community that was promoted heavily on Netflix a few years back, which featured a real world religious community actually being involved in poisonings (including of public water supplies, though the main incident was salad bars).

LaNasa and co. seem to suck plenty, but even Freud acknowledged that sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
 


toucanbuzz

No rule is inviolate
...It would appear to violate the PI designation in the 5e SRD put out under the OGL, and under the OGL if they use the 5e SRD then they must comply with the 5e PI designation....
I stand corrected. So it's likely a copyright violation unless they got permission from WOTC. Which maybe they did, but my gut says given their relationship, probably not.
 

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