So I was contacted on facebook by the folks behind casl Entertainment to take a look at Dungeon Module A7 – Marquessa, Thy Name is Evil. The module which clocks in at around sixty seven pages of OSRIC or Advanced Dungeons & Dragons OSR goodness is a pretty well put together package. This is the third module in the series following up & continuing the plot started in A5 Dungeon Module A5 - Kill Marquessa! by Carlos a.s. Lising; "Of the infamous Flesh Traders, perhaps none was more fearsome than the elvish enchantress known as The Marquessa.
Her unspeakable experiments that twisted the flesh and bones of the innocent into horrific abominations continue to fill the good folk of the land with dread, even now, fifteen years since the slavers’ ring was smashed by a band of legendary heroes and she was forced to flee into the night. At last, however, her
whereabouts have been uncovered and a new band of adventurers has been assembled to bring her to justice!" If the first module in the series is sounding more then a bit like a Hammer horror movie plot I believe this is intentional. As the second continues the plot in A6 Die, Marquessa, Die! by Carlos a.s. Lising; A brave fellowship of heroes failed last year to bring the notorious villainess known as the Marquessa to justice – and as a result the innocent folk of the land have suffered greatly.
"However, the elusive and sinister enchantress has been located once again, giving the forces of weal another opportunity to extinguish the grim silhouette she casts across the region. Willyour characters be able to succeed where before them legends have failed?
Is there a reason for this?! I believe the answer is yes, even though these modules take place within their own campaign setting. The Dungeon Module A7 – Marquessa, Thy Name is Evil could be structured around the fall of T1-4 The Temple of Elemental Evil by Gary Gygax & Frank Mentzer. The fall of the temple allows the notorious villainess known as the Marquessa to rise to power. The power vacuum left behind allows this leader to come into her own. The PC's are going to have their hands filled with this module & since its designed for levels 9-12 this isn't a low level module at all.
But is Dungeon Module A7 – Marquessa, Thy Name is Evil a solid addition to your gaming collection?! Well there are several small areas such as several of the fonts might need to be changed in minor areas, the cartography is passable, but casl Entertainment is a small outfit but their modules make up for it in style. There is a ton of stuff going on & I really like the homage to Hammer & classic horror that mixes with classic old school Sword & Sorcery AD&D goodness here.
Could Dungeon Module A7 – Marquessa, Thy Name is Evil be used with other retroclone systems? Yes I believe with a bit of minor adaption this module could be used with Swords & Wizardry . But this is a module that's really geared for OSRIC without a doubt.
I think it would easily work for Labyrinth Lord but it might take a bit of work to back end it into there. But the real issue is that could be run with a lot of modification with Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea. Many of the classic AD&D adventure elements would have to use their Advanced Dungeons & Dragons counterparts. Dungeon Module A7 – Marquessa, Thy Name is Evil is really its own beast & has to be run on its own terms. I give it a four outta five & I think that we'll be seeing great things from casl Entertainment. There's also support for the company from facebook right here. Don't worry I believe that casl Entertainment will be changing the title artwork to the artwork that you see in this review quite soon.
If you want a copy of the module I'd buy the creations of Carlos a.s. Lising though the comapny 's Facebook group or you can buy modules in October at www.caslentertainment.com