Friday, February 3, 2017

Review & Commentary On The Free OSR Resource Adveture - Skull Mountain From Faster Monkey Games For Labyrinth Lord & Your Old School AD&D Style Systems

I can't take any credit for finding out that Faster Monkey Games has a lot of its OSR titles & adventures on Drivethrurpg for free now. Kai a blog subscriber & OSR guy in his own right alerted me to this fact. Skull Mountain is one of those OSR adventures that I always meant to check out but never had the time or cash. Now its free & so I decided to take a crack at it. Boy I'm glad I did, written by Jeff Sparks this is a deadly little affair of an adventure. This has a classic D&D style fantasy set up based on a sample dungeon from Holmes Dungeons & Dragons.

This isn't simply another OSR dedication adventure, oh no this is a nasty affair out in the middle of a dungeon that has a lot to offer the dungeon master. "When a rock formation on an old volcano looks like a human skull, you're gonna get cult activity. Sure enough, a group of unholy bandits called the Obsidian Heart moved in and robbed the countryside blind for their dark god, until Saint Garth smashed them a century ago. But after some recent earthquakes, the cult is back, kidnapping and sacrificing and pretty much demanding to be hunted down. Why now? Who controls them? Just how deep do the tunnels go inside... SKULL MOUNTAIN?" This takes from the wilderness into a deep end dungeon crawl with all of the trimmings, there are parts of this adventure that will take PC's apart who are not careful with their skills. There is a lot going on here in this dungeon from a cult set up to far more dangerous lying just below this adventure's surface. What your getting is thirty six pages of adventure & dungeon plus more;"36 pages of adventure, 18 detailed maps, a new ritual magic system, and original fantasy art by Andy "ATOM" Taylor and Steve Zieser, "Skull Mountain" is an old-school dungeon crawl for fantasy games like Labyrinth Lord™. Recommended for four to six characters of 4th to 6th level."
There's a brand new LL ritual magic system in this little adventure. This has lots of potential for other OSR style adventures if the DM wants to incorporate it into their own games. The back story is solid, the artwork very well done & the whole affair makes the adventure flow smoothly.
There's artwork by Andy "ATOM" Taylor and Steve Zieser that really fits the material of Skull mountain. Its well done, very evocative of the writing & echoes the old school sentiments found here.

The really nice part of this adventure is that it can easily be slipped into existing campaigns & take up a nice corner of your own campaign world. I really enjoyed the fact that the encounters ran from the simple to the complex giving the players a wide range of old school violence & danger without catering to the low end of the spectrum of play. There's lots of utility for a thirty six page adventure that has a bit of everything from dungeon crawling, intrigue & good old fashioned ultra old school sensibilities at its core.
Do yourselves a huge favor and pick this adventure up and get it on your old school table top for an excellent old school affair! Five out of five!

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