Saturday, January 7, 2017

Quick Spoiler-free Review: Wicked Fantasy Factory #0: Temple of Blood

I have been itching to run some Pathfinder games while I await the release of Starfinder.  I told my gaming buddies to have some 1st level fodder characters ready to go and whenever we had time I would run a campaign.  I have tons of 3.5 and Pathfinder material sitting around the house so I grabbed a module off the shelf for some gaming.

Wicked Fantasy Factory #0: Temple of Blood

This product is a 16 page adventure.  It was published by Goodman Games in 2007.  The cover on my copy states that the book was released for Free RPG Day in 2007.  The module is currently available in PDF from drivethrurpg for $2.  I acquired my copy for free.  The module is stated for Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 and on the back cover says "Requires the use of the Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook."  I ran the adventure using Pathfinder and I made no conversions to the stats.

The Wicked Fantasy Factory line touts itself as extreme gaming, going for a cross between Gauntlet and Mortal Kombat.  At the beginning of the moduel there are some suggested house rules to bring some extreme flavor to your game.  The most interesting one is the rules for finishing moves.  Each character is encouraged to design a finishing move that they can use on opponents.  There are also some rules to make combat with henchmen easier, changing how main villains work, and describing characters.

The module involves a series of kidnappings.  The player characters will be charged with finding the missing persons.  The adventure is a short dungeon crawl.  There is plenty of combat and a couple of puzzle-like challenges.  There is boxed-text to read to the players followed by descriptions of the areas as well as maps.  I appreciated the "E-Z Stat Blocks", which gives the bare bones stats for NPCs.  Hit points, attack bonus, damage, and a few other stats are listed for adversaries in an easy-to-read format.  Full stat write-ups are included later in the text, but I really appreciated being able to quickly find initiative and to-hit numbers without being distracted by useless skill bonus.

When I ran the adventure it ended in a total party kill (heh heh).  However, I would not hold this against the module.  The author suggests having a party of 4-6 characters with a healer and fighters.  I ran a party of 2 characters.  With more PCs and some adjustments the party could have easily survived.  I enjoyed running the adventure.  It is short and full of action.  The players get to crawl around a subterranean environment and hack things to death.  Temple of Blood has the tropes of an old D&D adventure while injecting a dose of modern video game hack-and-slash elements.  The art matches the tone of the book with black and white illustrations of adversaries and fighters defeating them.  This is a good introductory adventure for a campaign and I think it was a great Free RPG Day offering.  For $2 as a pdf I think that this is a good budget advenutre.