Do you have a favorite Dark Sun module? What was it, and why?
Dragon’s Crown, surely.
Part of the Dragon’s Crown adventure is ludicrous. Are the PCs going to destroy the Psionatrix with the Water Hammer? I don’t think so. I am thinking that once the Psionatrix is in the hands of the PCs they are more likely to want to destroy the Water Hammer.
Hamanu is also likely to predict such an attempt.
Have you guys seen Rich Baker’s reflections on Dragon’s Crown?
So, how do I think I did with 23 years of hindsight? As I write this, I have the old module spread out on my desk, and I’m looking through the various components. (Annoyingly enough, I don’t have the darned poster map, so I can’t admire my awesome psionic fortress. Wonder where that went?) In retrospect, there are definitely parts that are pretty railroad-ish or heavy-handed, although part of that was my excessive paranoia in making sure all the contributing authors knew where to start and stop their sections. I also seem to have been VERY fond of boxed text back in the day, although that was kind of a 2e style thing.
I am really curious at to which groups that actually played Dragon’s Crown destroyed the Psionatrix. I mean it would be against the best interests of the PCs to do it. Also the Psionatrix isn’t an evil artifact so destroying it isn’t even an act of insufferable do-gooding (which isn’t a Dark Sun campaign theme in the first place anyway).
A high level PC psion has a decent chance against a sorcerer king with the Psionatrix.
A thought, perhaps Pharistes corrupted it somehow, so that it would only work for his mind? He was a telepath, after all. Maybe anyone who tried to use it would immediately become subject to a mind seed effect instead.
Our group did. As did the one i DM’d almost two decades later. All it really takes is the threat of Defiling magic becoming even MORE prominent to fill the niche psionics plays in the world. It woulld also mean no more avangions in the future. All that and the knowledge that Hamanu would likely destroy Tyr if he found out they betrayed him. The characters keeping it might be more powerful in the short term, but it would put a dragon sized target on them. When I ran it though, I don’t recall my players having much time to think about it, as they were getting their butts kicked by the Order when they got to that room.
The adventure that came with City by the Silt Sea is my all-time favorite. I’ve played it twice, DMed it 5 times, never gets old. One group i DMed for decided they wanted to completely explore all the tunnels. They wanted to find the ancient cities deep in the Sea that they connected to. Too bad they forgot to bring enough food and water…
Haven’t played any of them straight, only with massive changes or using an idea, plot line, or scene from an adventure. I homebrew most of my adventures and villains, more personalized and i like the mental exercise.
Mine, would be Freedom. Used it as a flashback for my solo player at the time, he played a mul gladiator in 4e. I only used Part 1 (Press Gang) and Parts 4, 5, & 6.
The battle with the Gaj was very interesting, as it was a free for all (almost) with a high level monster thown in the mix, the escape afterwards was a blast also. Facing a bloodied (1/2 HP) Tembo with 30+ followers cowering behind him, and then he reduces it to 1/4 HP in one awesome blow, causing it to flee, bolstering his follower’s morale massively.
It was a very fun one-shot session.
Ten years later he was captured and enslaved as a gladiator in Balic for trying to free slaves AND attacking a Templar, starting the Broken Bonds adventure. That’s where he met an elf desert runner that was also captured and they soon make their escape.
I’m actually super partial to A Little Knowledge. Tweaked to hell and back, but still. Also Freedom.
Best versions were when half-elf character wound up seizing control of the tribe via forced political marriage to Jengi after a dwarf pc tried to rustle all the kanks. Same dwarf USED the dwarf children to lure out the kluzd. “If we keep feeding it kids, can we tame it?”
Then they used the tribe to sack Kled (think someone had read the books and knew about Kemalok).
Same characters wound up in Freedom. Don’t remember most of the enslavement part, but when the dragon magic began in the stadium the dwarf was all “Screw this!” and started throwing citizens off the stadium walls. His big plan was to make a pile of corpses to cushion his own fall. I think a human with some OP psion psychometabolism talents just JUMPED off the wall and essentially turned his body into a kite a la flying squirrel.
It worked, until the dwarf gave up on his going-nowhere corpse-cushion plan and jumped on HIM instead. I think they wound up crashing into the corpse cushion and surviving.
Pretty sure they eventually wound up in New Giustenal. The human became a dray and was the sole survivor: wound up using the planar mirror to escape Athas. Wound up on a generic d&d planet running the Dragon Mountain adventure. Never finished it, but I was gonna have the mountain shift to Athas and then lose its magic, trapping them there again.
A Little Knowledge was considered, but i went with Freedom because of the possible gladiator theme and the assassination of Kalak.
Sounds like you had some good times too.
I enjoy the Mind Lords of the Last Sea, but only with players who haven’t read it before. Also, I change a few things. First, I decrease the amount of available metal, there is no reason why they would have more metal. Second, I remove the Lizard Men, I enjoy the guilt Oronis has to forever live with. Third, and the most important, I remove the safety net built into the adventure. If the players stop the evil Mind Lord, the Last Sea disappears forever. The player’s looks so sad when they figure out what they have done. That’s why it’s my favorite. The look of dispair on the players faces is glorious.
OMG, you’re evil! That’s so wonderfully cruel! If i did that, my players would probably get angry and say i tricked them. ROFL
There could be tons of reasons for the higher-than-Athas-average amount of metal, too bad the authors never gave a good explanation. I have a friend obsessed with Saragar, he has a few theories regarding the abundance of metal that make sense. I don’t remember them all, but i do remember one of them had to do with various metal objects used as material-components for arcane spells. That theory doesn’t hold much weight, as there aren’t that many spells that consume metal for casting and the few there are don’t consume much, but his others were far more convincing(just wish i could remember them).
Keltis still has the guilt of genocide either way, since he doesn’t know he wasn’t completely successful. Even if he finds out, it’s not like the (thousands? millions?) of lizardfolk he slew aren’t going to weigh on his soul forever.
Yeah, i never use the safety net either. “Actions have consequences” is my rpg-group’s motto. Though the two times I’ve run that adventure, the party either got TPKed or they fled for their lives from the epic psychic.l
Question:Do you steal a NPC’s or PC’s brain? I favor taking it from a PC, but that’s because my players rarely care enough about an NPC to investigate their murder(unless money is involved)
NPC brain. My players are usually heroic. Although, if yours are not, maybe they are hired by a merchant to recover the brain of a family member, or valuable employee.
While the Psionatrix was shattered in my campaign, its shards were incorporated into the party wizard’s staff, enhancing his psionic capability.
I liked Blackspine best. Multi-dimensional mayhem! It was also a significant challenge for the players.