Friday, March 7, 2014

Review and Commentary On The Free Dragon's Foot Resource - The Forgotten City of Al-Arin By John Riley

This is a free old school adventure that deeply involves the powers and gods of Grey Hawk.

The Dragon Foot Blurb: 
An ancient evil is stirring. Can you survive the dangers of the city of Al-Arin? An adventure for 6-12 characters of level 10-14.

This is a forty two page mega campaign that sort of hearkens back to the heady days of AD&D 2nd edition's module Blood stone series.But only in the respect that this is a high level adventure. This one is a great cross over with the fate of  Greyhawk, so grab your high level PC's and your old players.
Let's jump right into the deep end.
Download It Right Over
Here is a bit more of an depth background on the adventure and its main protagonist NPCs. 
Hundreds of years ago, the ancient and evil god 
Tharizdun (“The Dark One”) was tricked by the 
deities Anu and St Cuthbert into entering a Stasis 
Chamber. Kept at Absolute Zero, Tharizdun’s powers 
were negated, perhaps forever. A great Temple 
was built at the site of the chamber, a granite block 
deep below the earth, a block of purest black, within 
which hovered a dark shape...
Basically this adventure seems to be a tour de force for high level PC's that gives the Dm lots of options to get them deeply involved in the mega plot of The Forgotten City of Al-Arin. This is an adventure that can lead PC's into the thick of a first and second  edition Ad&D Greyhawk bit of high level weirdness. 

How To Use This Adventure

There is a ton of stuff going on in this adventure that will utilized all of the basic books of AD&D 1st edition and more. Here's a bit more of what will be needed. 

Tharizdun is breaking free of his ancient bonds! In 
league with Teronus, a Gargantuan Dragon, he is 
systematically destroying the Power Gems of Anu.
This adventure is suitable for 6-12 characters of levels 
10-14. Use of 1st Edition AD&D Rules is recommended, 
with additional use of UNEARTHED ARCANA 
encouraged. There is additional use of ORIENTAL 
ADVENTURES but any PC monks should be of the 

The author is pretty serious about the fact that your going to go right into the high level action of it. This is a solid adventure that utilizes a wide variety of Grey Hawk location,NPC's, and more that could be used for other lower level PC's adventures. There is a lot of room to adapt many different ideas presented in this adventure as well as expand where needed.
The fact is the piece has more then an echo Lovecraftian goodness to it. The blue and white old school maps have more then a nostalgia factor. Since this is a high level AD&D adventure many of the players from the first edition of Grey Hawk and Deities and Demi gods are right there. But this one is more of a side line to a few major events that won't happen... yet.
I kept wanting more and more to go on and I think that this was done on purpose. There are many elements of Grey Hawk without the guilt factor that seemed to go into later product from TSR. All in all the sections of the adventure can lead into other loose ends that players are going to have to deal with later. This is a strength.
The fact is that forty two pages this one  has a lot of expansion room for the DM to customize it as they see fit to wield, shape, and form it into their version of Grey Hawk.
All in all a very different and exciting adventure even at forty two pages this is a  even paced high level piece that is solidly done and well worth the download. 

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