Monday, January 21, 2019

Review & Commentary On Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5 Palace of the Dragon’s Princess By Mark Taormino & Dark Wizard Games

"Once upon a time, the lakeside Kingdom of Damoros was suffering from the death of its benevolent King. All hope now lay with the Princess who was set to marry the bravest knight in the land, and their union would restore the realm. However, on the wedding day, the evil Dragon Maelfesto attacked the castle by surprise and took control! The serpent drove everyone out and took the princess captive in the caverns below, wickedly enchanting the palace never to be seen again. Riches, honor and glory will be gained for those who save the fair maiden, defeat the beast and return alive from the Palace of the Dragon’s Princess!"

Its freezing quite literally out here at Casa De Fabiaschi & Mark Taormino from Dark Wizard Games contacted me last night with my review copy of Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess. This module funded within one day on Kickstarter & its interesting to see the resulting adventure. Clocking in at forty four pages this module presents a very interesting twist or two on the usual tropes of a"rescue the princess" adventure  module. But be warned that this is a high level module designed for character levels 8-12 and can be played with the OSRIC system or easily adapted to AD&D, D&D 1e to 5e, etc.

The artwork & layout are top notch & easy on the eyes. The adventure plot fits the ins & outs of the quality of what we've seen from other Taormino adventures in the past. The whole thing plays very well with others if your looking to integrate the module into an existing campaign. Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess has the look & feel of an 80's well designed gonzo adventure  fest. Inter locking adventure parts that fit into a colorfully deadly whole of max carnage & OSR adventure weirdness. 

But is Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess good? Yes if you need a high level & deadly adventure with a plot & actual campaign impact with a twist or two. Encounters here are deadly & the module plays for keeps. The action is twisting, dangerous, & weird. This is a module set in a smaller yet important kingdom. Think Greyhawk with a big budget action sequence built into it & I mean this in a good way. Overall I liked what I read. This isn't a module to be taken lightly & the impact of its events will be felt for a long time to come within a campaign.

The encounters move along at a very quick clip & like many of the  Maximum Mayhem Dungeons tongue is firmly in cheek but its not out of alignment with the themes & tone of Palace of the Dragon’s Princess. Make no mistake this is high fantasy taking place within a Dungeons & Dragons world along with all that that implies. The creatures, monsters, races, etc. are all very well done but fit the mode typical of the module's adventure genre. While conventions are broken the ideas here are solidly  Taormino with everything twisting & churning in the world of Palace of the Dragon’s Princess.

The artwork is strong b/w with the cartography being up to the standards that Dark Wizards &  Maximum Mayhem have provided in the past. Could the Maximum Mayhem Dungeons modules that have been released in the past be used as an over arching campaign by the dungeon master? Yes because of two very important factors :
4 Pregenerated PC characters
40 Encounters within Palace of the Dragon’s Princess
All of these can be linked up to other Dark Wizards adventures such as Vault of The Dwarven King adventure  to form a heavily influenced campaign setting.

Artwork from Vault of The Dwarven King

Overall I really liked & was impressed with 
Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess by  Mark Taormino & Dark Wizard Games. There are somethings to keep in mind about  Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess 

This is a campaign style module which means that the results are going to have very wide implications for an old school or OSR campaign. The monsters & encounters actually live up to their implications for PC's. The adventure is high level for reasons & that players should have at least three to five PC's on the back burner. The PC's are going to be a major influence on the campaign that this adventure takes place in. Connecting  Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess with other OSR or old school modules isn't hard but the results after this module is completed are going to test the player's PC's later on. There's lots of interesting nods & Easter eggs within the module that the DM can exploit connect this module with other classics from Advanced Dungeons & Dragons first edition or B/X era.
Is the 
 Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess  module worth getting? Yes I think so because of the overall playablity, repeat adventure utility, quality & ideas contained within 
Maximum Mayhem Dungeons #5  Palace of the Dragon’s Princess

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