Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Review & OSR Commentary For Castles & Crusades Rpg - Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing By Brian Young From Troll Lord Games

 "(2nd printing -- substantially updated and added to from 1st) The Celts dwelt in a world wholly separate from our own - of stone cromlech, wicker men, dark fey and wild gods. In their world, ancient trees bore the wisdom of time, and the world was alive with spirits. They possessed a language of such haunting beauty that its echoes stir memories within us of a people we once were. The Codex Celtarum delves into the myths of the Celtic peoples, the powers of the world around them, the monsters that hunted them, and the gods that watched over them.

Within the Codex Celtarum lies a wealth of information; gaming material that blows new life into the world of the fey, the druid, the ranger and all characters whose travels carry them through the wooded hills, broken crags and dark forests of our primeval imaginings."

When it comes to Castles & Crusades, a book by Brian Young is pretty much an automatic pick up for me as a DM. 'Castles & Crusades Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing' isn't any exceptions & when it comes to this book its for a solid reason. Originally the  Castles & Crusades Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing kickstarter passed me by. But luckly we were able to get in on the action for this book. So what's different about this book then the original edition? Pretty much just about everything:
  1. 'Castles & Crusades Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing'  has expanded PC options,monsters, & spells. 
  2. Beyond most people's awareness there's lots of expanded adventure options on the table top. 
  3. The artwork is very well done & so is the cartography. 
  4. The role of the Celtic spiritual, supernatural, & even realms of the gods have been expanded upon in the form of the mythological spirit realms. 
  5. Lots more artwork in between the pages. .
  6. The role of the Druid & other traditional Dungeons & Dragons classes has been expanded with the Celtic framework of 'The Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing'. 
The role of the Fey expands across the world of Celtic myth & its done right. The Fey are done right! They carry lots of opportunity for adventure. Not only that but this book is incredibly useful for a the Amazing Adventure rpg & even the Victorious rpg by Mike Stewart. 

'Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing'  is nice in  how modular the book is for campaign & adventure design. The overall book speaks volumes for a campaign that utilizes a Celtic or Druidic theme as its base. For example the 'Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing' is a perfect book to use for an Arthurian themed campaign. The material fits the mythos so well that it blend in perfectly. 

For a classic Advanced Dungeons & Dragons campaign such as Greyhawk, 'Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing' could add in an extra layer of material. This is  especially true if the dungeon master is using Castles & Crusades as his or her base system. 

The Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing gives Greyhawk a much more Celtic mythological edge to the campaign world. The Fey & the Celtic gods exist in a sort of uneasy relationship & the world of Greyhawk is changing. The Otherworld takes far more center stage with its influence both helping & hindering Greyhawk at turns. 

What takes this sort of a campaign arrangement over the edge from classic campaign into full on workable campaign is how the  Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing hands both the religious aspect of the material & how it balances the PC stuff. There's real tension here and it's not a full blown war or anything of the sort. But it makes it clear that not everyone exists with a campaign world vaccum within the Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing. Meaning that the forces of the Otherworld are very dynamic. 
Its this dynamic relationship that really drives the Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing within the Troll Lords house campaign setting of 'The  World of Aihrde'

Fey, Gods, etc. all fit within the slotted adventure holes of the  'The  World of Aihrde' & this makes the Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing valuable for the Castles & Crusades dungeon master. This means that the DM has at his finger tips the Fey, Gods, & monsters  relationships within  'The  World of Aihrde'

So is the  Codex Celtarum 2nd Printing worth getting?! Yes because the DM has the power to impliment the Celtic mythological material into a whole cloth book right within their campaign. The book is a fantastic addition to the Castles & Crusades line of products & I highly recoommend it! 

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