Dungeon of Zenopus
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Post Posted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 5:32 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote: I also know of one group of PC's that ignored the Caves of Chaos and attacked innocent citizens in the keep instead.


We used to have a fun little scenario we called "Evil Keep", where everyone in the Keep was Evil, except (of course) the rogue Priest who was Good but in disguise. I recall my friend rolling flaming barrels of oil down the stairs of a tower to discourage an angry mob of residents.

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Post Posted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 5:39 pm 
 

a great mod we played was that "palace of the silver princess" - the DM converted the mod to suit his world and changed it somewhat. the characters were new and some of us were searching for a god to worship and he used it to fit around that. must admit he did a damn fine job of it.

tell ya tho...it really is fun playing a chaotic neutral fighter :)

i opened a door into what used to be a library. i got shot by a goblin in there.....so i charged in.....tripped on some rubbish, hit a bookcase and toppled it onto the four goblins beneath it, killing them :D

now that was funny :)



  

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Post Posted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:34 pm 
 

I have run Bone Hill 3 different times where I made Pelltar possess the Baron and imprison the PC's after they explored the hill, so he could get the magic items found there. Once the daughter fell in love with a PC and let them out, once they managed to dupe a guard, and once they were so freaking dumb I ended up executing them. It is always fun to change modules around.


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Post Posted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:42 pm 
 

Deadlord36 wrote:I have run Bone Hill 3 different times where I made Pelltar possess the Baron and imprison the PC's after they explored the hill, so he could get the magic items found there. Once the daughter fell in love with a PC and let them out, once they managed to dupe a guard, and once they were so freaking dumb I ended up executing them. It is always fun to change modules around.


oh absolutely...i totally agree. it then throws everyone and i think its great then when you sit back and the players start arguing about what is happening and shouldnt be :)

i do that all the time - and really, in another wya, it keeps the old classics nice n fresh for game play too.

Al



  


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Post Posted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:55 pm 
 

Deadlord36 wrote:It is always fun to change modules around.


Yes. In the Dungeon of Zenopus, I thought of making one of the statues that the Thaumaturgist had actually be a statue of old Zenopus himself. You see, Thaum used to be his apprentice, until he stole Zenopus' wand of petrification and stoned him. If the players find Thaum's scroll of stone to flesh they can decide if they want to turn Zenopus back to flesh. He will want to reward them greatly but will find he is much poorer since his Tower was destroyed... :D

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Post Posted: Tue Oct 25, 2005 3:32 am 
 

Actually, one of the best times I ever had as a player in a module was sacking and burning The Village of Homlet.

    The townspeople have lots more money and magic than the badguys.  We were a party of misfits, all with powers rolled from the special abilities table in the Arduin Grimoire.  I was a Deodanth assassin (Which would make a good title for a book about gaming!).  We blew the module wide open.  Much fun....and we killed the evil badguy spies as well simply because they were mixed in with the townsfolk.  Take that, evil!   8)


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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 1:59 am 
 

zhowar1 wrote:
grodog wrote:Holmes also wrote some Boinger and Zereth stories for A&E, back in the day. I don't know the issues offhand, though.


Yes, it mentions that in the back of Maze of Peril, but as there is no index available for A&E, I haven't been able to figure out which issues,
short of buying them all.  Very Happy  And they don't appear on Ebay often.


I'm heading back to KS tomorrow, and can check the details if you're interested, zhowar1?

zhowar1 wrote:
grodog wrote:He also had one or two rejected by The Dragon (!), which are equally good IMO.


Are these the ones Holmes sent you? He didn't give you permission to distribute them, did he?


Yes, in fact they are.  I plan to try to get back in touch with him again, and will ask if it's OK to share the stories.  Unrelatedly, I *loved* the ruined cycloepan forest city from "In the Bag" (Dragon 58)---it's likely my favorite Boinger/Zereth tale :D

zhowar1 wrote:
grodog wrote:Maze of Peril should still be available from Project Pulp (formerly from Time & Space books) at Authentication required!


Yes, I bought it there about two years ago. I believe the copy I ordered from them says First Printing, 1986, so it may be overstock from the original printing, or else a re-print where they didn't bother to change the printing info.


I special ordred my copy from my FLBS back in the '80s or so (still has a reserve sticker on the spine with Grohe on it).  

zhowar1 wrote:
grodog wrote:In addition, his excellent "Confessions of a Dungeon Master" from Psychology Today (1980) is well-worth digging up from microfilm
.

Yes, I've been meaning to locate that. Also interesting is the Dragon Magazine article where he reviewed the Moldvay basic set when it came out!


I don't recall that review, will have to dig it up.  I'll see about scanning the Psych Today article, since IIRC it was on that crappy 80s copy paper that's really bad.  I should see about digging up a copy of the magazine for a good scan source, I guess....


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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 2:55 pm 
 

Dreadlord wrote:Yes. In the Dungeon of Zenopus, I thought of making one of the statues that the Thaumaturgist had actually be a statue of old Zenopus himself. You see, Thaum used to be his apprentice, until he stole Zenopus' wand of petrification and stoned him. If the players find Thaum's scroll of stone to flesh they can decide if they want to turn Zenopus back to flesh. He will want to reward them greatly but will find he is much poorer since his Tower was destroyed...


This is neat!

In my rewrite of the Basic Rules, I also reworked this dungeon giving it more of a "Cthulhu" atmosphere where Zenopus was delving into the unwholesome foundations of the city and tower. This shows in that there is variable architechture (a detail for the players to notice) with some areas simply delved by Zenopus and other areas of finer work where Z. found ancient ruins. More levels are planned with more and more twisted and evil things as you go deeper. Also provided more background for the sarcophogi (one contains a man who was so evil he was buried alive, and is now a wight with a particularly nasty disposition)

In my version, Zenopus either (a) turned into some sort of lich/demon/cthuloid in the bowels of the earth, or (b) simply came to a horrifying and grisly end down there. He should have been fortunate to simply be turned to stone!

  


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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 5:22 pm 
 

Charles G. wrote:This is neat!

He should have been fortunate to simply be turned to stone!


Thanks! In my version, I was trying to keep the adventure short yet add some plot elements without adding much material. I also had the idea of having the characters specifically sent on a mission to rescue Lemunda the Lovely. The town council, including Lemunda's powerful father, gives them a partial map of the dungeon, and tells them "we think this connects with the pirates' cave where they are holding her ransom, please investigate and resuce her if possible". I tried this once, it's a good way to introduce a new player to the concept of mapping.

The Sample Dungeon is great because you keep it short or have it be the start of further adventures, as you did. Holmes' himself has a very Cthulhulean underworld in his book Maze of Peril...including specific references to Dagon.

I'm curious, where did you place the entrance to lower levels? I wish Holmes had provided more clues. But I guess if you are going to add whole levels, you can easily add any entrance, too...

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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 5:24 pm 
 

grodog wrote:zhowar1 wrote:
Yes, it mentions that in the back of Maze of Peril, but as there is no index available for A&E, I haven't been able to figure out which issues,
short of buying them all.  And they don't appear on Ebay often.

I'm heading back to KS tomorrow, and can check the details if you're interested, zhowar1?


Sure, that would be great! Do you have all of the back issues of A&E?  8O

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Post Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 5:34 pm 
 

grodog wrote:
zhowar1 wrote: Also interesting is the Dragon Magazine article where he reviewed the Moldvay basic set when it came out!
I don't recall that review, will have to dig it up.


I found it when looking at DragonDex, on online Dragon index. I believe it's in issue 52 and called "Basic Points of View". There are two reviews, one by Holmes, one by Moldvay. Holmes reveals some interesting tidbits about the printing history of his version. For instance, it wasn't his fault that the first print of the basic book had a wandering monster table with many monsters that were not in the book - he says someone at TSR added it. This was corrected in later prints as detailed on the Acaeum listing.

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Post Posted: Sun Nov 27, 2005 6:13 pm 
 

zhowar1 wrote:
grodog wrote:zhowar1 wrote:

Yes, it mentions that in the back of Maze of Peril, but as there is no index available for A&E, I haven't been able to figure out which issues,

short of buying them all. And they don't appear on Ebay often.



I'm heading back to KS tomorrow, and can check the details if you're interested, zhowar1?




Sure, that would be great! Do you have all of the back issues of A&E? 8O




Oh no, absolutely not:  I don't own any A&E issues.  Holmes sent me the materials he had published there (and some of them appear to be originals, which was how APAs were organized and distributed IIRC:  the authors sent in X copies of their materials to the coordinator, who then bound everything together and distributed it out to the subscribers/contributors.


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