Saturday, December 30, 2023

OSR Commentary On CA1 Swords of The Undercity By Carl Smith, Bruce Nesmith, & Doug Niles For An Old School Sword & Sorcery Campaign

 "The adventure is divided into three scenarios, The Secret of Urgaan of Angarngi by Carl Smith, The Web of Mog by Bruce Nesmith, and Claws of the Shree-kah by Douglas Niles. Each is playable separately within one evening session of gaming, or as a whole, in one single adventure." 

"During the first scenario, The Secret of Urgaan of Angarngi, the party acquires a treasure map and eventually sets out on an expedition to recover the forgotten treasure. This scenario includes the journey through the Sinking Lands to the Treasure House of Urgaan of Angarngi, and the destruction of Urgaan's Mad Tower." 
 CA1 Swords of The Undercity By Carl Smith, Bruce Nesmith,  & Doug Niles information from Wayne's Books.

CA1 Swords of The Undercity By Carl Smith, Bruce Nesmith,  & Doug Niles came out in 1985 and we played through it in '86. There's something fundamental about CA1 Swords of the Undercity. Because of the fact that it gives a grand tour of the Lankhmar realm for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons first edition's campaign setting of Lankhmar. Make no mistake CA1 is a brutal adventure and it will punish the stupid.  The Secret of Urgaan of Angarngi, is definitely thieves centric with the players aquiring a treasure map and getting double dealed. This is a Lankhmar centric adventure in the truest sense. The party is drawn into the campaign setting in dangerous and not so obvious ways. 

 What CA1 Swords of The Undercity By Carl Smith, Bruce Nesmith,  & Doug Niles does is string together three adventures and gives the player's PC's a solid stake in Lankhmar as a campaign. Especially in encountering the next scenario 'The Web of Mog'. The party is drugged and thier treasure stolen. Thier home base of the 'Silver Eel' is invaded and they must deal with the fall out of recovering thier property after the adventures of the Sinking Lands. And it's within 'The Web of Mog' that we get a good look at some of the factions of Lankhmar. When we played through we had our behinds handed to us by some of those factions in '87. 
But it was the 'Claws of the Shree-kah' where we learnt to fear the sewers and what lays within them. There was danger and intrigue aplenty when we were dealing with the 'Thieves Guild' and much worse in Claws. CA1 had us going from one point to another while dealing with the horrors of Lankhmar. We died multiple times because of the fact that the party wasn't anyplace near the appropriate level for this adventure. But CA1 did establish our presence within the city and gave the players the touch stone they needed for a solid Sword & Sorcery campaign. 

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