Beggars Review: Corsairs of Tallibar: Judges Guild Universal
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Post Posted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 6:20 pm 
 

Beggars Review: Corsairs of Tallibar
Judges Guild Stock # 910
By: Mike Wilson
Date: 1982, Pages: 48 (counting covers)
Six (6) Pre-Gen Characters are provided with details including stats (Judges Guild) and supplies and some secondary skills are listed with short histories for each character.
Approved for use as a Universal Fantasy Supplement for 1st-3rd level Characters.

This book is a common enough listing on e-Bay and should cost no more than $10 and probably half that much with patience.

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Designed for Players/Judges with a couple of adventures of experience.
Even though the number of creature encounters is not large; this scenario can be challenging for lower level characters.
Those players/judges who prefer hack and slash adventures with crowds of monsters and huge mounds of treasure, will be less than thrilled with this one.
Encumbrance factors should most definitely be adhered to as it plays a huge roll at the start and even more so at the end.
Some of the treasue is in the form of large items not easily carried.

This is a basic Uncharted Island with an abandoned Pirate Fortress/Underground Dungeon Crawl.
Starting the Adventure:
There are several levels of complexity the Judge can use for this scenario.
If run alone, the scenario could start at the Island or even at the front door of the Fortress itself.
The Judge could fill in details for the Port City of Qylondak for some city encounters, with the PCs not knowing at first about the Lost Island at all.

The players might be hired by someone in the City to Map an uncharted Island for them.
The Players could get information for the Island through legends and lore, or at the local watering hole not far from the suspected location of the Island.
The information gathered at the watering hole would be in the form of rumors, some true some not true.
Another method to integrate the Characters into the main scenario is a letter from a friend or family member giving some details of the Island and its history.
(Such a letter is supplied).

Some advanced prep work by the Judge (DM) is needed as this is a somewhat large module filled with details that the Judge should be familiar with prior to running the scenario for the first time.
Depending on how detailed the Judge wants it to get; this is not a quick plug in module, but a time consuming adventure that should take at least two and probably more full sessions to complete.
The Judge could add pre-Corsairs and post-Corsairs encounters/scenarios as well.
The module could be plugged into any world setting that includes a sea with Islands and Pirates, or Sea going raiders.

The Book includes a map of the Island with a few detailed pre-set encounters, and others can be plugged in by the Judge, or none of them.
The Island portion has specific encounters listed for each area of the map.

There are four different wandering monster encounters for each area above ground (Sea/Island);
Nydar Sea/Rocks/Forest/Hills/Scrublands/Grasslands/Rocks/Mountains/River/Marsh
And six different wandering monster encounters for each dungeon level: Upper Dungeon Level/Lower Dungeon Level

Additionally there are more than 80 areas detailed with 71 of them inside the dungeon/fortress itself.

A couple of the tougher areas:
Area 48 can be deadly: At the Lower Dungeon level there is a huge underground Salt Water Lake (Map 2, area 48.) that could be the start of further adventures if the Judge wishes to continue beyond the scope of this book.

Not far from the shores of the underground salt Lake is a deadly threat that the Judge might not wish to use... it is a giant Octopus, lying in wait for food.
If they remain in the area long enough, the noisy PCs will be irresistable for this creature.
The Characters are unlikely to kill this creature (almost impossible) but the creature could easily kill and eventually devour one or several party members if they are not wise enough to flee, or lucky enough to run it off for a time.

Another possibly deadly area (Map 2, area 60) is a long hallway which includes a see through wall (Magical force wall) which displays sea life (underwater).
The sea creatures cannot get beyond the force wall (though they can push on it to some extent) but the PCs could...
If the wall is somehow penetrated by a PC (IE. Sword thrust/stab) the resulting flooding would cover most of the lower level, likely Drowning the entire party.

Area 71 is an unfinished area that can be used by the Judge to expand the adventure further.


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Post Posted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:55 pm 
 

Wow, a low-level dungeon with pirates and a giant octopus in a sea cave? I detect some influence of the Holmes Sample Dungeon!  :D

Thanks for the review. The later JG modules are somewhat neglected, so this was a great choice. I knew nothing of this module other than the title.  I'm going to hunt down a copy - I see Badmike has it in stock ...

The maps look quite nice. The dungeons look more like TSR maps than what I usually associate with JG.

The author, Mike Wilson, also wrote Trial by Fire, a 1981 JG module for 1st level characters. This is another one I know nothing about. This review compares it to B1. Could I request a Beggar's review of this one?


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Post Posted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 5:00 pm 
 

:lol:
I started reading Trial By Fire after reviewing the one above, due to it being designed by the same author and also being a low level adventure.
Review for Trial by Fire.

http://www.acaeum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12426&start=0&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=

Addendum to Review, For the Corsairs of Tallibar:
Some back history is needed, and I should have posted this above...

All save one of the pirates are either dead or undead (it has been 70 years since anyone last heard from the pirate band).
The only living encounters inside the fortress are low level monster types and a few low level undead pirates.

Getting to the point fast?
The Pirates contracted a strange set of afflictions due to some magical tinkering by the pirate chiefs wizard.
Almost all of them are long gone...

Long story?
The Pirate chief knew the band was slipping and that the pickings from pirating raids were getting harder and harder to come by as the high kings lackeys whom he had agreements with started dying off, retired to a life of luxury or simply decided to stop helping due to the great risks involved.
So he had the wizard magically enhance the band with greater speed, agility and  strength among other things.
This worked well for a while with the band seeing renewed success on raids.
That is until the side affects started to show themselves.
Most of the pirates were driven completely mad and a murderous rampage by many of them killed off most of the few who did not contract the worst of the side effects.
The last surviving pirate is that same wizard who is now quite insane himself.
He is in fact a set encounter on the Island.

Of course, the Judge can easily change anything he/she wishes.
If I was to run it I would probably revise a few things.
Though there is no way I take out the octopus.   :twisted:  
One thought I had was to change the time-line and have the Fortress still inhabited... by live pirates though perhaps near the end after the wizards tinkering has already taken its toll.
Perhaps the PCs either save them, or risk having the same thing happen (by lesser degrees) to some of them as well (taste testing unknown potions).

This would mean the scenario would have to involve higher level PCs though....
I do not think a group of 1st level characters would be tough enough to take on not just a fortress of Pirates, but worse... magically enhanced pirates... even worse still... most of whom are completely insane and cannot be reasoned with.

I do highly recommend the Corsairs of Tallibar for beginning characters and it can be fun just as written.
Yes, Badmike does have plenty of copies left and in fact, I got my copies of this one from Mike...

Tell him you want the Beggars Discount...  8)


"Guys, I am starting to think Tegel Manor might be haunted..."
Stated by me as a PC during a run of Tegel Manor DMed by killjoy at NTRPGCon 2010

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Last edited by Gnat the Beggar on Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
  

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Post Posted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 3:42 pm 
 

Corsairs has some nice maps, but there is a LOT of empty space here.  A good dungeon for replacing the monsters with your own creations.

Mike B.


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Last edited by Badmike on Sat Sep 21, 2013 12:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Posted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:12 pm 
 

An empty space in a dungeon is an opportunity for the dungeon master.


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Post Posted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 1:15 am 
 

Gnat the Beggar wrote:Though there is no way I take out the octopus.


Like in the Popeye movie? If I remember correctly, Robin Williams sings to the giant octopus until it flees in boredom.

  


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 10:34 am 
 

*bump*

I featured this module on my blog today for Talk Like a Pirate Day, including linking to Gnat's excellent review here.


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