|January 4, 2011||Posted by John Arcadian|
So imagine this situation, it is about 1 day until game time and your encounter with the BBEG or a very important plot piece or fight is slated to happen in the next game. Unfortunately, the characters aren’t quite ready to take it on or the player who has backstory hooks isn’t going to be there. Darnit, what do you do? The obvious answer is to stall and delay the big game until next session, but you still want to run today and you need something to run. The PCs are on their way there, so you need to throw something in their path.
Enter From Here To There, a Goodman Games adventure pack containing 9 adventures. The nine adventures contained in this book are all fantasy based adventures made to be introduced to PCs while they are travelling. They are listed as 4e compatible and have all the requisite stat blocks and gridded maps required. The adventures are easy and small enough that they can be converted into a non 4e or a non D&D game system fairly easily. Reskinning for a different genre may take some work, but I can see some of the adventures being usable outside the fantasy D&D setting.
The format of the book is what you would expect of an adventure book. It gets right down to the point and presents each adventure right after the necessary book elements like a title page and copyright page. The chapter listing has suggested levels included which is a very nice feature.
The adventures themselves follow the same format, allowing for easy use and quick incorporation. Each adventure has an intro paragraph from the author talking about the bare bones or concepts in the adventure. Following this is an Adventure Summary section which lays out the basic flow of the adventure. In each adventure you will find an Encounter Table, summarizing the encounters, types, and locations; a Scaling Information section, providing tips on how to modify the adventure for stronger or weaker parties; an Adventure Background section, which gives the motivation and impetus for NPCs and enemies; a Getting The Players Involved section, which provides information on how to introduce the adventure to players; and finally all of the encounters and relevant adventure information with each encounter.
Each adventure is short, made for about a session’s play. The adventures are all written by different authors and they each have their own style and feeling. I read through three of the adventures: When Madness Seeps Through By Philippe-Antoine “Chattydm” Menard, The Toll Station By Adrian Pommier, and The Hanging Tree By Lee Hammock. Each had a unique flavor and feel, but each was well crafted and followed the easily runnable format. My game of choice isn’t D&D, but it is a fantasy game and each of these adventures would be easy to run and modify for my games.
Look And Feel
The adventures contain illustrative art, which is very good and evocative, and maps that could easily be drawn out. Printing the maps seems possible, but the size of many would require the blueprint printers found at big box office supply stores. The entire book, save the cover, is in B&W, but the art is of a style that emphasizes and works with that. It is definitely a pretty book to look at, and that helps inspire the GM when looking through the adventures. Some adventures even have printable handouts with the art included. These make for a great addition to the physical space of the game.
If you run 4th Edition D&D, or any fantasy game, this is a great book to have when you need to throw something at the PCs while they are on the road. The adventures are easily usable and would take much less than an hour of prep to incorporate them. Enough information is provided to jump right in. I’ll be using two of these adventures, When Madness Seeps Through and The Hanging Tree in my upcoming games, making some modifications and joining them together. At $6 it is hard to pass up. I got my copy on Drive Thru RPG. Goodman Games website lists it as available in stores, so if you want a paper copy check with your FLGS. This is definitely worth a purchase for any Game Master to have adventures on hand and ready to go.