Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Loot and Plunder have arrived, from Lulu!

So now I'm finally the proud owner of some more excellent gaming materials, of the old school variety. Fight On! is just as good as always and the other stuff was also very nice indeed. Undoubtedly I will post more about this hoard later. Today I will note one of my impressions of the bundle.

After having browsed Stonehell, by Michael Curtis, I still think it would have been better if he had reworked it a bit from the original format. While the One Page Dungeon template might be a good focus for your creativity, I don't think it works as well as a quadrant of a bigger dungeon map. On the earlier maps I think it is clear that the connections between the quadrants are few, and it doesn't look like one big map. It looks like four maps with some connectors. The lower levels look more "organic" so I guess he felt more at home with the template as he kept chugging along.

Now, don't get me wrong. I think Stonehell is a marvellous piece of work and my first thought on cracking it open was "Now I want to find someone to play this with!" It's that inspiring. But, I think Mike could make something even more exciting without limiting himself to the template.

If I weren't so unfocused on my own writing I might try to learn something by this for my own. Having my dungeons shaped by the limits of my medium have been on my mind before.

Well. Go get Stonehell yourself and see what you think! I'm very happy I got it.

4 comments:

  1. Yes, that is the one criticism that has been levelled at Stonehell.

    I downloaded the Mines of Khunmar recently, which is a free megadungeon, and has been touted as a good example of the genre. It suffers from a different set of problems, including its' own 1-page constraints, separation of the contents from the map, and the fact that it is more of a draft than a publication-ready piece.

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  2. Mines of Khunmar is another really impressive work. I actually readily look at both that and Stonehell for inspiration.

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  3. Yes, I am planning to order mine when I get paid this Friday. . . and anticipate having a similar reaction: LOVE Michael Curtis' work, would love to see wackier maps out of Stonehell. But I'm planning to procure and use it in any case!

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  4. It's worth the price of admission!

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