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(5E) U01: Dark Days in Stoneholme
by Christopher S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/01/2021 12:59:19

I'm not able to write reviews with "contructive elements". Best I can do is say my players enjoyed playing this with a party of dwarves (+1 elf, always that one player). They are interested in coming back for more of this trilogy.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
(5E) U01: Dark Days in Stoneholme
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Mini-Dungeon Monthly #1
by Stephen C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2021 18:17:35

In working my through the scenarios in the book, I'm enjoying myself. The adventures I've read have been 2 pages of text with a map, so they are a breeze to read and understand. I like the format. Some of the scenarios have been too ambitious for the pagecount, though, so I wanted a little more, but I get that they wanted to keep it short. Lots of fun adventures in here, and they are rich with further story and adventure ideas.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Mini-Dungeon Monthly #1
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5E Mini-Dungeon #150: Thin Ice
by Stephen C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2021 17:39:25

It is exactly what it says it is, a short, interesting dungeon. With all the mega-modules WotC puts out, this was a nice change of pace. There are story ideas in the material that you could easily flesh out into more adventures, but it works just fine as a short jaunt.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
5E Mini-Dungeon #150: Thin Ice
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Mega Map Pack 1 [bundle] [BUNDLE]
by Joshua W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/05/2021 15:41:29

This purchase is a total rip off. 99-95 spent and I will not use a single map. The quality is total garbage. Never make this purchase.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Mega Map Pack 1 [bundle] [BUNDLE]
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Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition
by Tim H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/14/2021 11:26:25

One of my favourite campaigns so far, I admit I had a lot of fun with my players as a DM. We may have nearly had a few TPK's during the harder encounters but the players loved the game so much we couldn't wait for our next session.

The whole theme is quite amazing, and the breakdown from exploration to dungeon, to underdark and even some choice diplomatic encounters rounds up to cover lots of things for players to do. My only criticism was that some encounters are built straight for a fight and when the players decide to run or con their way out it's very unexpected.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition
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Mini-Dungeon Tome (5th Edition)
by D. A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2020 00:36:40

This appeared to be a great value but as they say if things seem too good to be true . . .

I have spent a good amount of time with this book and have ran 10 adventures from it to date. I applaud the attempt at providing an abundence of content, but much of it is quite amaturish in regard to the adventure/dungeon design. A number of the descriptions don't make sense and are blatently confusing. I feel like I have to start from scratch with barely any foundational work laid for a number of them. Furthermore, if you peruse this book much in one setting it seems there is a lot of duplication with repeated monster use.

You should know some of the dungeon adventures in here are yanked from at least one other product from the publisher and these seem to be lacking context as they steer you to said product. This means you're given a scenario that is missing set up and potential follow up.

At least one adventure (The Kabandha's Request) literally gets droped mid-sentence in a room description. The next page is a different adventure. Seriously? This is just one example but there are others that lead me to believe little energy was spent on proofreading. I wish I spent more time with the PDF before I chased down a physical copy online. A bad double purchase stings doubly bad. Lesson learned.

I'll give the digital version a couple stars for the map pack. If it were only a map pack and at a lower price probably 4 stars. But be advised this does not deliver quality wise on the adventure design. In spite of the book's promise, I would plan for some prep without wich many of the offerings will be a lackluster game session as the percentage of well written scenarios appears quite low.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Mini-Dungeon Tome (5th Edition)
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VTT MAP PACK: Caves 2
by Jeremy C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/01/2020 14:49:21

These work great in a VTT program like Roll20. Very easy to upload. Great quality. Lots of versatility. I like that there are "unlined" maps.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
VTT MAP PACK: Caves 2
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(5E) C01: Alagoran's Gem (Fantasy Grounds)
by Andrew C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/29/2020 04:09:45

I don't usually do dungeons but I like this one - nice one.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
(5E) C01: Alagoran's Gem (Fantasy Grounds)
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Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition
by Ryan T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/02/2020 16:59:47

This beautiful book acts as an adventure, sourcebook, and bestiary (in that order). Throughout the adventure each chapter offers you a list of consequences to the decisions, or lack thereof, that your players make… and the outcomes of possibility of failures. Which I enjoy, as if I’m lucky to run the campaign multiple times each playthroughs will be different. With the amount of lore (and there is a lot of it) and possible sidequests given in this book you can easily make a sandbox adventure out it, of which I'll do, or insert it anywhere into your campaign. There’s also spells in here as well. A fun tome that is welcomed in my collection.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition
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Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition (PF1e)
by simon c. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/02/2020 15:20:19

I got the PDF version right now. It's a wonderful underdark campaign, filled with wondrous (and perilous) locales, characters and factions of all kind. I'm very much tempted to expand on the material presented here, add a duergar city or two, and deep gnomes here and there, but as it is it's already filled with material, more than enough to run a sandboxy underdark campaign. The campaign itself (lvl 1 to 15th, a change in pace and leveling from the previous PF version I believe) is something like 170 pages, the setting in whih it takes place is approximately 163, and the rest of the book (which is is 543 pages total)the massive bestiary, fully illustrated and filled with horrors from below as well as quite the collection of statblocks for our dear drows.

Illustrations are a-plenty, maps are colored, beautiful and evocative...It's quite the treat for a fan of Underdark adventures/settings.

If you wish more in-depths reviews of the work I can only recommend the awesome blog of Endzeitgeist, which was not completely unrelated to my acquiring of this book in the first place...



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition (PF1e)
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Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition (PF1e)
by JEROME M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/29/2020 21:22:39

I heard a lot about Rise of the Drow over the years of playing Pathfinder. I missed the initial releases and the subsequent Pathfinder compilation, so I was thrilled to join the Kickstarter for the Rise of the Drow Collector's Edition. I went in whole-hog for the BIG book, pdfs, dice, maps and even the Underworld Encounters Deck! To date, I have been very pleased with the end result, as the maps, dice, and pawn set are really nice and are of top notch quality. The same could be said for the overall adventure, Rise of the Drow. The original adventure was presented at level six, but the story was later expanded to include a level one introduction. It is worth saying that this adventure probably works best for starting at level three, as the introduction can be quite taxing, to even the most veteran of players. This is a good thing, mind you, as this adventure starts in a way that feels unique and gets the players characters involved on the action from the getgo!

The adventure book is almost 600 pages long and covers a complete bestiary of creatures used in the adventure as well as setting and campaign information about Rybalka and the various nearby dwarven and drow cities, respectively. I'm reading through the adventure and it looks to hit all of the buttons of epic fantasy for those that enjoy such things. As an old school player with a lot of experience dealing with the nefarious drow of old, I jumped at the chance to bring a proper drow invasion into the Pathfinder era. Over the course of this campaign, the experience should run the gamut of what makes long running campaigns great!

I noticed a few minor errors here and there, but nothing major. The pdf is bookmarked for easy reference and the entire book has sidebars throughout. There are constant timelines and reminders alongside page numbers for the creatures or items in each encounter. Honestly, the way this is organized makes it superior to formatting used by Paizo, Kobold Press, and Frog God Games.

I'm still waiting for my final BIG book from the Kickstarter, but I feel, based on the sheer depth of material available to mine for this campaign alongside the way my players are reacting to the game, that this will be considered a classic drow saga not only by our little gaming table, but by many more tables to come! Rise of the Drow is as good as fantasy roleplaying adventures get.

Buy it, today!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
5E Mini-Dungeon #018: Neotomas' Paradise
by Randy B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/01/2020 09:45:33

This is the second one I used in my campaign. I worked it into a scenario of helping the mayor find what is happening to the poorest of the citizens. These little dungeons are perfect to augment the DM's story he/she is trying to tell.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
5E Mini-Dungeon #018: Neotomas' Paradise
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5E Mini-Dungeon #002: Hobgoblin Lair
by Randy B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/30/2020 05:12:38

Perfect for a low level dungeon to teach new people about the game. I will certainly use others. I added a secret room to this module of my own design at the end. But that was not due to any short comings of this product. It was so King Oberon could invite our ranger to his special troop of Fey Wanderer Rangers. Worked great and saved me lots of time!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
5E Mini-Dungeon #002: Hobgoblin Lair
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Future's Past: Tomorrow's End (5 of 5)
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 07/27/2020 11:01:31

An Endzeitgeist.com review

The finale of the Future‘s Past AP clocks in at 30 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 26 pages of content, so let’s take a look!

This module was moved up in my reviewing queue as a prioritized review at the request of m patreon supporters.

…to be frank, not that moving this one up would have really needed coaxing. The module is for 5th level characters, and concludes the Future’s Past AP. This is not a module you can run as a stand-alone offering without losing its impact, which is also why I’ll deviate somewhat from my usual format for reviews, and instead note something important:

The Future’s Past AP, in many ways, is one I’d recommend for experienced GMs, but it is one that also has an intrinsic teaching angle integrated into its structure: The initial two adventures started off in a way that was more conventional and should be easy to run for less experienced GMs; part III and IV progressively built on that, slowly taking away the training wheels and going more and more into freer-form structures that emphasize player agenda above linear presentation of a projected plot. This module, then, is the final exam, the graduation of the GM into a scenario so epic in scope and versatile in its possibilities, anything short of an open presentation would be doomed to failure.

You see, while the structure of the module is very much one of a linear sequence of events, the scale or scales on which these events happen and their precise nature are very much open to the preferences of the respective group playing this adventure. The module does come with read-aloud text. That being said, this module does require preparation; like the remainder of the AP, you cannot run this spontaneously. Frankly, though? I’ve rarely had as much as joy preparing a module as I did with this one. Why? Well, know how the previous modules in the AP sent shivers down my spine?

Guess what? This one genuinely managed to outdo them. The prose is fantastic, and even the non-read-aloud text, in many instances, is quality-wise on a level that outperforms the vast majority of readaloud texts. I am not kidding. And before you ask: This is not a victim of failed-novelist-syndrome; it may sport phenomenal prose, but it’s also very concise, precise. It doesn’t waste words or pages.

Okay, in order to go into more detail, I will need to dive into SPOILERS. Potential players should jump ahead to the conclusion. No seriously. If you spoil this series for yourself, you’ll be missing out on what might be the best adventure saga for SFRPG to date. You’ve been warned.

… .. .

Okay, only GMs around? Take in this introductory text: “Déjà vu implies some uncertainty. This is more like a recurring nightmare coming true. The distant stars twinkle, as if obscured by a thickening sphere of dust, the size of a solar system. Then, the galaxy disappears entirely. Illuminated by the light of dimensional rifts, ships gradually take shape within the cloud. Some seem miles long, dwarfing even Edge Station’s asteroid. While most are smaller… there are so many. Hundreds or thousands of crafts moving in perfect tandem. Each is all sleek, aggressive lines. Like a sword or spear sized to stab a god. You have never seen these ships, and yet you have. They are an old foe, and you have fought them many times. But… they always win, and you always die.“

Central AI is coming with an entire fleet; the PCs have fought and lost this battle an infinite number of times, and thus, the characters benefit from practiced perfection throughout, which is mechanically represented in a variety of ways. The PCs start off with a frickin’ functional time machine (problem solving advice included); it can transfer matter; it can tinker in the past – and yet, there is no chance to win. There simply are not enough people on Edge Station to beat Central. Ever. Only, you know, the PCs can take themselves out of alternate timelines/realities, evening the odds – and it only costs a few hundred-trillion lives as those doomed realities are now reliably lost. Of course, seeing variants of yourself die and die and die over and over again isn’t particularly good for the psyche…

And there are limits: Timetech Gamble pays a hefty, horrible price for the use of the time machine; Butterfly effect tables, and Vincent’s mighty Node as an ace in the whole also are included – but ultimately, the module requires winning against a vast fleet combat, which comes with concise rules for starship fleets and (rules more abstract and simpler than starships, but otherwise capable of making fleets pretty much on the fly, based on starships), but starship-level rules for Edge Station are provided as well; indeed, it is possible to run this potentially sans the fleet combat, but the beauty here is that you can switch from fleet combat to ship combat to personal combat, if you want to – you know, PCs on board a ship fighting nano warrior invaders, representing hundreds of battles like this, taking place all over the fleet, as infinite PC duplicates live and die…

Ultimately, the PCs need to face the Nanochine avatar of Central AI itself; it has killed them 127 times; it can’t fathom how they can still surprise it; it can’t fathom that here, at this one junction in time and space, at this one instant, the all-mighty AI can LOSE. It’s up to the PCs – or their future might well end up a thing of the past…

Conclusion: Editing and formatting, on a formal level, are good – it’s the one thing about this book that I don’t love; it’s good, mind you, but I noticed a few instances of spell-references missing their italics and similar cosmetic glitches. Layout adheres to the series neat two-column full-color standard, and the module comes with great full-color artworks. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience, and we get a pretty awesome galaxy map, but no player-friendly version of said map.

I should probably penalize this for its minor hiccups.

I refuse.

Srsly. This conclusion to Future’s Past not only manages to end the AP in a satisfying manner, it actually succeeds in surpassing the previous installments. Yep, you read that right. If you’re an experienced GM, you will read this and balk at the ambition, at the scale. At how smart it is. At how well it covers all those “OMG, I can’t handle that” aspects; this book not only makes a functional time machine work, it expects the party to properly use it. To beat impossible odds that would even be beyond the power of deities. At level 5/6. And IT WORKS.

The streamlined, quick fleet combat suffused with the option for individual encounters of starship combat requires prep-work. This holds true for the entire module. This adventure assumes competence on part of the GM. If you pull it off, your players will laud you forever.

I genuinely can’t believe that this series exists and is complete. Why? Because it is so smart, clever and concise it almost hurts me; each module in this series can outclass adventures of thrice or more pages; the entire campaign is perhaps one of the best scifi/science-fantasy campaigns ever put to paper. At least I’d be hard-pressed to mention anything that comes close. Additionally, it’s a saga that exceeds in ambition and scope what most authors and publishers would even dare to attempt, much less pull off. I still can’t believe that this masterful AP was pulled off not only with a singularly clear vision, but even without using a kickstarter or the like. Within the seemingly few pages of the saga, the extremely concise writing allows GMs to easily spread the content if desired. You could make this module, for example, last one session – or up to 5-6.

Stephen Rowe once more shows why he’s one of the few authors I buy sight unseen. I have the entire AP in softcover, and I’d rather sell some limited edition hardcovers than these modules.

How good is Future’s Past? If you play any non-SFRPG scifi/space opera game, I genuinely believe that this saga is worth converting. Yes, even if you’re not familiar with SFRPG’s complex rules, this series is imho good enough to translate it to Stars Without Number, Traveller, etc.

This right here, this AP? It’s the benchmark for SFRPG-modules, the level that needs to be beaten. In fact, I consider Future’s Past to be so far beyond most modules, it almost feels unfair to put them in the same category.

5 stars. Seal of approval. Top Ten Candidate. EZG Essential. If you even remotely like the concept, please buy this series.

Future’s Past is one of these outstanding sagas that should grace the shelves of any GM. This should be considered to be a rite of passage level adventure for the genre.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Future's Past: Tomorrow's End (5 of 5)
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Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition
by Michael H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/21/2020 17:03:29

Unfortunately this campaign is not well written for 5e, rambles with excessive narration and while the cover and much of the artwork is stunning, it neither provides sufficient matterial for a full campaign nor is organized in a manner to allow ease of use at the table. The connection betweens feels forced and jerky at times, resulting in the need for me to expand on the story arc thus smoothing the rough connections.

Add to that the fact that their pdf prevents copy and paste for use in online gaming tools the publication is almost unsuable by me, especially during the current situation associated with COVID. I full support protecting the IP of a company, but come on, I should be able to snip bits and pieces out of the pdf I purchased for use in my personal games. If someone is planning to pirate the material they will simply take scans or screen shots of the pages and post those on sharing websites. Making a product more difficult to use for the consumers that actually purchase the material, only encourages more pirating. I for one will not be paying for another campaign book from AAW, unless they become more supportive of the consumers that support their company.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition
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Creator Reply:
@Michael H. We've taken your words seriously and made some changes! You can now copy/paste from the PDF. The third column throughout the adventure (purple text) provides key DM information if the narrative is too wordy for you. Please let us know if you have any questions, we're more than happy to help! Thank you, Jonathan G. Nelson AAW Games
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