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DB5: Dro Mandras II 
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Maukling
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Post DB5: Dro Mandras II
I just got my copy of DB5 in yesterday and I have to say, I think this just might be one of the finest works that TLG has put out. It is that damn good and I absolutely devoured every page.

It is a good solid module with neat additions like the battle formations rule, a point system four use in determining the success the party has in breaking the siege of the city, awesome new monsters (the new demon is firggin' awesome!), nice magic items, and the quests for the holy relics are very well done.

I expected 9 kinds of awesome for this module but they delivered 15 kinds of awesome.

Pure win.


Sat Feb 07, 2009 1:44 pm
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Hlobane Orc

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That's what I was hoping was going to happen. I really like the HH series.
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Sat Feb 07, 2009 2:18 pm
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Battle Stag
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That is good news. The author hasn't let us down at all on this series, and I'm really looking forward to getting a copy (or two ).

-O
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Sat Feb 07, 2009 2:49 pm
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Maukling
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I'd say that this module ranks up there as one of the best, and not of just C&C modules either.

Can't wait to see the Black Libram and the Folio one day.


Sat Feb 07, 2009 3:37 pm
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Mogrl

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I found it interesting the interior says its for like 4th level PCs, so I flipped to the back and there's like 9 HD monsters and a town under siege.... interesting, methinks. Sounds brutal for that level, so it'll be fun to walk a party to pure defeat.
And, no, this is not a bad thing. It just means the party has to be smart, or they die.
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Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:16 pm
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Maukling
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Actually it also says that the party should be at least 4th level and that it doesn't follow the "you must be X level" deal that other modules follow.

Gives ya the sandbox and see's what the PC's do.


Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:23 pm
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Mogrl

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Yeah, you're right -- it does say "at least." I usually skip the text part and look at the number, just to get a vague idea of where its "meant" to be -- I think I'll give it a go at the lowest needed level and see how it goes.

Have not ran a siege in a very long time.
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Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:52 pm
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Maukling
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Quote:
DangerDwarf wrote:
Actually it also says that the party should be at least 4th level and that it doesn't follow the "you must be X level" deal that other modules follow.

Gives ya the sandbox and see's what the PC's do.



Ya. Casey tends to be.... fluid... about defining levels. I asked him the same thing at one point.
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Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:53 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Haunted Highlands was the first C&C mod I played, so I'm looking forward to getting this when I pick up StarSiege next week.
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Sat Feb 07, 2009 6:14 pm
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Red Cap

Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 7:00 am
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Post Level o' Play
Level appropriateness is sometimes hard to guage.

A party of say five 4th level guys should be able to achieve most of the goals and objectives with moderate to heavy difficulty. The average 4th level party doesn't quite have fireball or lightning bolt on deck, but it probably has access to very good equipment and has started to collect a few magic items such as potions, a wand or two, and some +1 weapons and armor. They probably have pooled enough money that the cleric, fighter and/or paladin/knight have plate mail armor and a big shield.

With the good armor, there aren't many orcs, goblins, or hobgoblins who will hit the fighting corps in a one on one fight (needing a 18+) to hit that poor 4th level guy. Most of those same gobbos, orcs, hobbies and what not go down like a (BLEEP) with one hit. Toss around a couple of webbie spells and things start lookin up for the PCs, and battles maybe just get longer than stuff they had done in the past. *shrug* anyhow thats how I came up with 4th level as a good median for this adventure.

Smaller groups of higher level guys would probably get the same results. Oddly enough running large groups (8+ players) of 2-3rd level guys is great with a lot of throwaway characters because then the adventure reflects what most of the survivors and defenders of the city had to face... being outnumbered by hordes and hordes of badguys and lots of death by attrition. (Also a fun way to go). You could sorta run it like survivor. Start with 10 players and see how many are still standing after achieving some of the victory goals. Last man standing buys the beer?

At the same time I know that there is a potential of a PC death in this adventure. Definitely. I'm not squeamish about PC fatalities in RPGs. Characters die, and sometimes it makes the memory of the game better for everyone else. Alot comes down to the maturity of your group and their acceptance that calculated risk may result in the loss of their PC, or that refusing to work as a team may result in the whole team getting whiped out.

The best videogame for summing up this equation that I have ever seen is the recent offering by valve "Left 4 Dead". In that zombie apocalypse vehicle, players who don't watch each others back or help one another out are dead.

I sort of look at that risk vs. reward factor when designing treasures and I really don't like to limit the usefulness of a product by saying "oh yes this is for 1st level guys only" or whatever.

In this one, the PCs can achieve a victory if they take out different sets of enemies, equipment, or checkpoints in a set number of days. Then again they can also achieve victory by going a more circuitious rout that is potentially a lot deadlier but obviously more decisive and "Heroic" in the lawful good sense of the word.

If the PCs go for the really really powerful relic type items they MAY have to do battle with a 9 HD monster that is likely to destroy them. Then again they may NOT have to do battle with the creature at all.

Anyhow, I'm glad everyone is digging it so far!

I really like the cover, the piece peter did of the hobbos at the pavise and the one with the gobbo chomping the cigar with a keg of explosives in his other hand! Love it!

Later

Case

P.S. BOWBE says its fun to use battle formations on those 5th plus level guys when they start attracting the attention of hobgoblin archers. Can we say paladin pincusion? Yes we can...hehehehe


Sat Feb 07, 2009 7:18 pm
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Master of the Kobold Raiders

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You know, I think a scenario from this module would make a convention game. Put a couple of them together and you'd have a tournament.

Just sayin'.
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Tue Feb 10, 2009 5:20 am
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Battle Stag
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Just reading through DB5, and there is so much room for tournament modules to be written within Dro Mandras, is amazing!

The module is indeed fluid, and in my humble opinion, not for the inexperienced CK.

If there was ever any doubt that the Haunted Highlands setting was ever in need of a setting folio/box set/book or whatever, just read over the Dro Mandras series. The city of Dro Mandras alone is worth it's weight in heavy tomes just for the potential of becoming a living city.

Bravo on this series to both TLG and the author.

-O
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Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:28 am
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Maukling
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Quote:
Omote wrote:
If there was ever any doubt that the Haunted Highlands setting was ever in need of a setting folio/box set/book or whatever, just read over the Dro Mandras series. The city of Dro Mandras alone is worth it's weight in heavy tomes just for the potential of becoming a living city.

Bravo on this series to both TLG and the author.

-O



Complete agreement there, DB$ & 5 are masterpieces.


Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:34 am
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Maukling
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We're working on the folio folks. I even have a cover started for it. ^_^
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Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:29 am
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