With this post of the thematic week devoted to the Lamentations of the Flame Princess role-playing game, written and published by James Raggi I will show you the review of his adventure The Tower of the Stargazer.
The Tower of the Stargazer is an adventure of no more than 30 pages designed to be the introductory adventure the book of Lamentations lacks, so it has been conceived and written for newbie referees and players, but also have the goal of satisfying more veteran role-players expectatives. To continue with the review I will divide it in two different parts to show the basic characteristics of the adventure that may interest both groups of players, although without revealing not many details of the place where it develops to avoid ruining the fun of a an afternoon game.
This adventure is designed to be played with a group of 4 to 8 first level characters and a referee with the ruleset he preferes to use (the adventure can be easily adapted to any Old School Renaissance ruleset or to Dungeons & Dragons) and what is proposed is the classical investigation of a building, a dungeon or any underground complex to search for treasure and glory, although in this case Raggi has opted for offering another classic: A magician tower.
This tower is in a moor far from any city or important pipulation center and it's caracterized by an unusual fact: the many rays falling over the building or near it's sunny or cloudy. This phenomenon is the perfect alibi for get Playing Characters into the gaming session, as adventures tasked to investigate an strange situation or as travelers looking at it during their voyage and wanting to know more about it.
|Free photograph courtesy of Pixabay|
The tower itself is described thanks to a set of sections properly numbered corresponding to the interior map available at the adventure end (which of course I haven't put any photos to ruin the surprise), in each section the referee will find an accurate description of the rooms in which the tower is divided and an explanation of the situations and encounters that may ocurr. These explanations are accompanied by text boxes in which Raggi gives a series of advices for the referees to think about how to arbitrate the situations commonly ocurring in role-playing games, like how to manage Characters knowledge in the adventure setting regarding what players know, use the narrative for describing what they are seeing in a given time or using logics and common sense.
In the case of more veteran players wht will they find is a really easy adventure that the referee can seamlessly integrate in any existing campaign setting or adventure series, he may even expand it given its linear structure and the absence of a background plot (which obviously makes it possible to fit it into any existing story or any we can imagine).
As for the existence of sinister and macabre elements to which Lamentations of the Flame Princess has accostumed us Raggi has decided to apply a more measured tone to the adventure, so even there are supernatural elements these aren't no so different from other ones that tipically can be found in fantasy adventures of other similar games (although obviously that does not prevent us from changing or adding elements interesting us).
The Tower of the Stargazer is an excellent tutorial for all persons willing to get an initiation to role-playing games and need an easy adventure to meet on a Saturday afternoon and have a good time. More veteran players also can enjoy the adventure and remember those times when they started, they can even use it to help spreading role-playing games among those who are interested and want to give them a try.
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