Manual Into the Void (The Dungeoneers Book 36)

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Hey hey, instant love potions Lasts days. Hold acts like superglue for 30 seconds. Honesty makes a liar own up to a single lie or cheat. Mend patches cloaks and other simple holes, but nothing major. Mistake causes the victim to make a single small mistake. Pied Piper summons a small swarm of vermin. Pucker causes someone's face to pucker uncontrollably. Push is what it sounds like, dangerous near piles of compost, riverbanks, or cliffs.

Slip merely causes someone to banana-peel slip. Sour ruins a single container of food or drink. Stomach-aches, nothing serious. Jab pokes someone sharply. Spark creates a small spark. Both of these are good for surprising someone, or getting their attention, but not much damage. Weather Improver is actually a spell that allows the caster to converse with passing bonobos.

It's named Weather Improver just to fuck with people. I made that last bit up. It improves the weather. I'm really bored of listing spells right now, so I'll take up again in another post, where I'll run through Priestly Magic. Okay I was I stand by that decision, and here's why: it's presented in a format that basically covers the main points of interest district by district in point form. Name of building, prominent occupant, adventure hook. I can't summarize that any more than it already is, and I'm not going to reproduce it in its entirety.

To be frank, most of it is uninspiring anyway. A Shadow Over Blacksand! This is the sequel to the adventures in Dungeoneer.

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It's not a direct followup--at least, in the sense that it pretty much expects time to have passed since the end of the previous prewritten offering. It is designed for heroes. The option is given to create brand new heroes, though, and in truth it would probably work pretty well without having played the Dungeoneer pre-written adventure.

The identity of a certain character will not have the same resonance as it otherwise might have. New players will also certainly not have access to magical weapons, which is gonna be a problem when they have to fight certain demon enemies that can only be harmed by magic weapons. Only one magic weapon was handed out in the original, though, so Could also have a City of Thieves adventurer, just like the last Dungeoneer! Someone did a let's read of that one, but for them as never saw it, the idea of Midnight Rogue is that you're a native of Blacksand and a thief, taking your graduation exam.

Whichever player chooses to be this guy gets a special introduction basically saying they were exiled from Blacksand after knifing a rival gang member in a brawl--not realizing he was a fellow guild member. You also get a background connection to a character of some importance to the plot, a merchant named Brass. The adventure begins with the adventurers being hired by a merchant named Waldo, who is terrified of Port Blacksand but is doing business with another merchant who lives there, a man named Brass.

He's so terrified of Blacksand that he's hiring ridiculous amounts of muscle to guard him even though Brass is meeting him in a town 35 km away from Blacksand. The idiot is paying well, though. Waldo is a coward, and an idiot, and is along for the ride to cause trouble for the heroes, mostly, more than anything else. He stammers, very badly, which is about the only way the heroes can avoid him blithely chattering every bit of dangerous detail to authorities in terror or complete lack of guile. Just mostly. He's basically only risking this deal because he's had a series of disasters and he's down to his last bit of money, and Brass is giving him a great deal as a favor to help him recover.

Brass has a bunch of guards himself, including a bodyguard named Veldik who has a sword that's enchanted if none of the PCs do, so that the demon that's going to be the centerpiece of the first scene. Waldo and Brass meet, Brass goes into his tent saying he has a few letters to write and tells Waldo to set up his stuff then join him in the tent to discuss, and then the heroes get to interact or whatever.

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They don't have to do any of the tent setup or anything, though, because Waldo has servants. They get to chat with Veldik a bit, because he's going to be important later, and then Waldo goes to meet with Brass, emerging a few minutes later to declare that Brass is dead. Veldik immediately assumes that Waldo did it, but what's meant to happen is that the entire group immediately realizes that Waldo couldn't possibly have done, and investigate. Nobody entered or left the tent, aside from Brass and Waldo, so Inside the tent there's basically the body, a big chest of gold, some letters and a candle and sealing wax.

Brass was strangled, completely ruling out Waldo--the dude's fingers wouldn't even have fit around Brass's neck. No sound was heard That makes it a serious threat, especially since spellcasting is ruled out by the silence field. This is a very significant threat, especially compared to the stuff in the previous Dungeoneer adventures--it's definitely been ramped up. Obviously it's been sent by someone with a grudge who doesn't want their identity known. The letters are the biggest clue to who might have done that--Brass lit the candle to use the sealing wax there, incidentally--and there are three.

One is a red herring, to a merchant in Salamonis, the other two are Clues. The first is to his wife, mentioning that a fellow named Dvorgar will be getting a letter demanding the money owed, and sending love to the wife and kids. The second is the aforementioned demand of repayment to this Dvorgar fellow. So assuming the fight is actually survived, which is not a given with starting characters, it's obvious that whoever is behind it had access to a wizard or some other kind of magic.

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Fortunately our PCs are accredited wizard slayers, right? Also, Waldo, being unable to conclude his deal with Brass, now has no choice but to travel to Blacksand to finish it up with Brass's son instead, and he sure as hell isn't going without his bodyguards. Then we get treated to the novelty of a scene with some trolls at the gates of Blacksand. Guess what? Waldo's going to do the talking if none of the heroes shut him up. Guess what else? The trolls want a bribe. They'll pick a fight with dwarves or elves, or otherwise make up fees or taxes to demand. This is the same scene as we had the last time we came to Blacksand with the added complication of Waldo being around.

Veldik, for his part, just quietly pays the trolls a small fee and enters the city without incident, which should be what our heroes do here. Just in case, the adventure has a bit of a convoluted path to allow the heroes entry without doing that, or if they decide to kill the trolls, or whatever, but we'll assume they did the smart thing instead. For the record, it offers two alternatives: one, pay a gold fine to the captain of the guard, forfeiting all possible reward from Waldo as it cleans him out, or two, follow a beggar boy and be wanted by the guards for the remainder of their time here.

Neither is great. Moving right along, whatever they end up doing, they have a couple of leads. Brass's house, obviously, is a good starting point, to find out if he had any other enemies. Dvorgar's house is known to Veldik, as well as basically anyone else they may contact. If the heroes are the same ones from the Dungeoneer adventures, they know Nicodemus and also Halim Thrumbar, their contact from that adventure.

The basic gist of the gathering information bit is as follows: Dvorgar is a bit of scum who has a bad reputation around town for being a cheat and a liar, but he's got nowhere near the resources to hire the kind of magical muscle needed. A visit to his residence can confirm that. Halim Thrumbar doesn't work for free--last time he was on the payroll of the King of Salamonis, this time he wants cash for info. He doesn't know jack shit about what happened here, but points out that any magic user would charge thousands for the kind of spell that took Brass out, and if Dvorgar owed less than that it rules him out.

He also knows where to find Dvorgar's house, Brass's house, or, for a bit of an extra fee, the wizard Nicodemus, assuming someone knows Nicodemus is in Blacksand but doesn't know where, somehow. Probably player knowledge. Nicodemus also doesn't know, and moved to Blacksand specifically to avoid getting pestered by everyone with a minor problem to solve, so he's not really that keen on being bothered.

Again, last time he had the King of Salamonis involved, plus Throg was a known evil wizard raising an army of the dead. IF someone mentions the demon, Nicodemus comments that he had wondered what that was about, but that he has no idea who was behind it or he'd have already dealt with it. He's pretty disinterested in having his time wasted and will not sell potions, spells, or anything else, and anyone who asks risks being turned into something small and squirmy.

Dvorgar owed Brass a few hundred gold. He has a few thugs as hired muscle, unpaid though they don't know that yet and he'll give in to a bit of intimidation once they're removed from the equation. He knows nothing, and can be intimidated further by being dragged to the public gardens, where Lord Azzur has some animated plants that he uses for executions, and threatened to be fed to them.

It's unproductive. There's also a scene where the desperate heroes can visit a clairvoyant. She's actually got the ability to see the future, but it's a future that's beyond the point where the heroes have found the info they need, not a future where they're in the act of finding it, and thus isn't much use except to foreshadow.

Brass was in thick with the Thieves' Guild, and anyone asking questions about the man will pick up a guild tail. They want to know who dunnit, too. This can go to the guild proper, and eventually will need to to get the information that's required to finish Brass had a wife, who knows about his dealings with the Guild and thinks they did it. Not Rannik, the usual contact, but a rival gang, which--if anyone's the hero from Midnight Rogue--is the same rival gang they knifed someone from. Brass also had a daughter, who is a sobbing wreck and knew nothing. She's a pretty 18 year old and there is a suggestion that marriage is a possibility for a successful group of heroes, but she wouldn't be a good wife for an adventurer.

I dunno what kind of group thinks about marrying the distraught daughter of a murdered merchant, but oh well. Brass had a son, who is the only source of the critical bit of information that moves the plot along. He knows Dvorgar isn't in sufficient debt to make it worth the magic. He knows for a fact that the thieves guild wasn't in on it, since Brass was carrying wares from the rival gang when he was murdered, and it set them back. He is afflicted with sleepwalking, which is dangerous, and nobody seems to be able to cure it. Brass had found a new religious group worshiping some god Brass never heard of before, and Brass gave them some money at first hoping to get their help, but cut ties after a few weeks figuring they were swindling him.

All he knows is that the deity was named Elim. Bells ringing now for anyone with a good memory who played the original Dungeoneer adventures. He directs the group to speak with Rannik the master thief for further information, as Rannik ought to be able to help them track down the cult. So after the tense visit to the guild to talk to Rannik, who will generously loan a magic sword to the heroes if they don't have one, there's a trip to the local cult of Elim!

They have a small basement temple, and there's a fight with some terrible useless cultists there, along with the magically capable High Priest, who is not Sargon. He knows several spells, including the ones to summon the Silent Death demon, on account of he dunnit. Once they kill those guys, they find a letter from Sargon to the high priest, informing him that he's doing well, temples are being established elsewhere, and instructing him to kill Brass and summon the spirit of Elim as he was instructed to inhabit the brass golem with the sacrifices as planned.

Wait, what? The cultists have a giant goddamn brass golem that they were planning to unleash on the city, funded by Brass's contributions. Now it's going wild. It takes a bit to get it out of the temple, but it's cramped in there There's 2 ways to hit it, hinted at in Sargon's letter--one is to destroy its heart, which can be hit only by missile weapons or if the golem is bending down, since the golem is so huge.

The first hit takes a Test for Luck to dislodge the protective plate, and then another is required to destroy the heart. The second option for taking the thing down is to drain it of Oil of Life, its blood. Slightly easier to achieve, slower to finish it off. Torbul Brass's son and Waldo pay up any outstanding debts to the heroes, assuming Waldo still has the funds to do so.

Rannik's magic sword, if not returned, vanishes mysteriously. If the golem made it into the city proper before being shut down, Lord Azzur puts a gold reward on the heads of those responsible, at least until it becomes clear they actually saved the day. Rannik can get them out of town safely, though. Nicodemus, if anyone feels like pestering him, will actually be happy to discuss things at this point, since it's clearly a matter of national security.

He doesn't have much to say of any real import, though--report this to the authorities, go after Sargon, etc. There was a spellbook of dark magics in the church, which just about everyone will tell the heroes it's a bad idea to hang onto. It's a bad idea to hang onto it, and anyone of the contacts can dispose of it properly.

If Nicodemus is consulted, he knows they have it and will deal with it one way or another, whether the PCs agree or not. Ultimately, this adventure was still fairly railsy, but the investigation section makes it feel somewhat more open. A clever group can bypass a lot of the red herrings, though--no need to talk to the clairvoyant, no need to get tangled up with beggars or guards, no need to waste time in taverns or under bridges, and definitely no time wasted shaking down small-time debtors.

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  4. Short and direct. And that's it for Blacksand!. Next, the final volume of the original edition of Advanced Fighting Fantasy, Allansia. Then it'll be on to the modern edition, and after that I sure as hell have a lot of options, now that the end of this is in sight I'm not dead! I'm just very lazy when it comes to posting. It primarily presents rules for outdoor adventures, in the same way that Blacksand covered rules for urban adventures. It presents a number of new Special Skills, most of which are either pretty specialized or pretty self explanatory.

    It has new spells, too, of course, for Priest, Wizard, and Minor Magic. There's rules for Mass Battles, which I'm not sure I can comment on effectively, and finally, the de facto final chapter in the set of adventures begun in Dungeoneer! See, in , the Fighting Fantasy gamebooks were pretty much tapering off. The publisher had intended to kill the line entirely two years earlier, in fact, with the publication of Return to Firetop Mountain, the fiftieth gamebook, featuring a return to the site and villain of the first, Zagor the Warlock.

    There had been a decline in sales of the gamebooks in the preceding years, attributed to the dominance of video games. I'm not sure I buy that explanation, personally. However, RtFM sold well enough to see an additional ten game books commissioned, only nine of which were published before the plug was finally pulled. During that time, Allansia was released.

    Go figure, I guess I should be taking better care of my copy. There are also rules for playing nonhuman characters, with expanded sections for Elves and Dwarves, plus Goblins, Centaurs, Orcs, and Trolls. I think by now I've clearly established that these guys weren't that great at game balance, and these races definitely don't show off any new insights in that arena. Rather than go through the whole list of spells and skills and such, I'm going to just cover the interesting bits this time around.

    New Special Skills. There's a couple of Dark-Seeing like skills, in that you can take them at the start of your career but not after the fact, that have to do with perception, like Excellent Hearing There are also a couple of skills, like Battle Combat, intended for use with the new mass battles system. There's Fishing and Hunting skills, and a couple of other primarily outdoorsy types, and a Disarm skill One really gets the sense that they just added skills for whatever their players were trying to do that hadn't already got a set of rules to adjudicate in previous books.

    By the time this book came out, my group had largely discarded the list of special skills as a reference and we just wrote down whatever seemed about right for our skills, since it's pretty clear the designers of the system were doing roughly the same thing. Bearing in mind that the average Goblin has a SKILL of 6 and the average weapon-using adventurer can be expected to have a weapon Special Skill in the range of as a starting character, this is kind of a killer spell.

    Admittedly, the spell requires touching the target, but there are tons of ways to accomplish that, as well, really Other spells include buffs, utility stuff for camping and travel, utility spells that allow multiple spells to be cast as a single spell check or grant protection against the dreaded Oops! There's also the great villain spell Exchange Shape, which lets you swap forms with someone--either by trading bodies or transmogrifying, each of which has ups and downs. Doing a mind-swap causes you to trade STAMINA stats, where changing both bodies around leaves both people dressed in their original clothes, which can be awkward.

    Also works on animals New Minor Magic spells are the same general type of minor tricks and pranks and practical but not powerful magics. You can make someone drunk or sober, etc. Again, one gets the sense that the designers just threw in a bunch of other minor magic effects that they came up with at the game table Priest spells? They also get a bunch more direct copies of the Wizard spell list, and a couple of spells like Locate Sacred Place or Commune With Element, which are pretty explanatory. They also get the same kind of special effects spells the Wizards do, too.

    Nothing stands out as exciting or unique here, more than what was already discussed.

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    New Races There's expanded bits on roleplaying dwarves and elves, but no new rules for those races. They move faster than humans, jump farther, but take penalties to sneaking and climbing. They can speak horse! Goblins are kind of dicks, and rarely adventurers for obvious reasons they don't get along with humans, etc.

    They get modified stats, which suck. Or vice versa. I don't know. They also can't take a few Special Skills, most notably Strength, which is the go-to for adding extra damage. They get a limited spell list drawing from both Wizard and Priest spells, outside of which they can't expand. On the plus side, the individual restoration spells for the three stats, plus a couple of debuffs like Fear and Befuddle, are part of the list, so they're at least capable of doing something useful there Orcs are similar to Gobins, rule-wise.

    Everyone hates them, especially dwarves. They must take at least 1 point in Dark Seeing, Strength, and the use of a very large weapon. Most Lore skills can't be taken unless it's specifically in their background, and they can't take any magic but Minor Magic. Mass Battles There are two Mass Battle systems presented.

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    The first is the Quick Battle system. First, total up the number of soldiers present on both sides. Divide this by , that's how many Battle Rounds will be fought. Next, there's a set of modifiers for battle conditions that are applied. The loser of this contested roll subtracts their roll from the winner's total, multiplies by 20, and loses that many men from his side. This continues for the number of Battle Rounds determined by the number of combatants at the beginning, or until one side is out of men or capitulates. After the first round and every 3 rounds after that, every player has to fight a Heroic Combat, a one-on-one duel with a champion from the other side.

    This is meant to be set up so that the opponents are roughly equal in strength and abilities. The other system is far more involved, and actually involves playing out the battles. Units of 10 combatants per token are set up, there's move speeds and stuff, and they get Battle Skill, Battle Stamina, Move, and Attacks stats. Then you basically play out the battle on the tabletop. The measurements they use are centimeters--a 1x1 centimeter square is a unit of 10 men. I've no idea what scale that comes to for miniatures.

    Things alternate. Step one is that first one side then the other can have their units move or fire. Step two, they engage in combat--basically the same rules as regular AFF combat, using Battle Skill etc. Units of creatures are advised to use all the same weapon type to simplify calculating damage. Step 3 involves a morale check. There are of course modifiers for terrain. Firing is like regular ranged combat, and actual combat is, as mentioned, the standard rules, except that unlike standard fights, the Attacks stat is used as a damage multiplier, not to determine how many targets can be attacked.

    Morale is determined by rolling a check against Battle Skill. If the check is a failure, the unit breaks and flees if possible. They get to check on the next Morale Check to see if they rally--a second failed Morale Check results in the unit fleeing the battle entirely. Heroes in units take damage proportionally to their unit, and are only killed if the unit is wiped out entirely. Spells are cast during the Fire phase, one per Battle Round, instead of moving or firing.

    They have special different rules for how they work under the circumstances of battle. There are also special Battle specific spells, like Arrow Storm or Heal, that are not exactly equivalent to normal adventuring spells. This includes the first 10 men. There's also stats for fortifications, in case you want to run a siege. Outdoor Adventure Rules These mostly include environmental modifiers, discussions of what might be found in different types of terrain, and random encounter tables for different areas of Allansia.

    Also, a second Outdoor Oops! So that's the crunchy bits of Allansia. Next time, I'll cover the adventure in the book, and then at long last I'll be ready to go over the new edition of Advanced Fighting Fantasy in all its obscure and mockable glory. Several weeks and a username change later Part the final: A Darkness over Kaad I don't know why but writing this adventure up has just really been intensely unappealing to me for some reason.

    It's not especially bad Mostly it's a passable conclusion to the Sargon trilogy and an excuse to use the new mechanics introduced by the book. The adventure immediately recognizes the problem inherent there: The characters made back in Dungeoneer who brought Sargon back, and who played through the adventure in Blacksand! Unless you waited till after all three books had been printed before you got your group to play it. They pretty much get around this by providing a guide NPC who can cover this, or suggesting that some players could roll new characters, though they do hope that at least one or two characters have the whole back story.

    Alternately, a short interim adventure to get them the skills they'll need is suggested. The gamebook shout-out in this adventure is Return to Firetop Mountain, but there's really no benefit to this one. The character will have passed through the town that this adventure is set around one time, but doesn't know any of the main NPCs and didn't do anything meaningful there. He met Yaztromo, though? Which doesn't matter. So hey, be that dude or whatever, it really isn't A Thing the way the last two were. The setup for this adventure is that Sargon, from his mountain lair in the Icefinger Mountains, has been gathering an army to destroy the really unimportant town of Kaad.

    Kaad is the site of a couple of old, ruined temples once dedicated to Ashra and Vuh, the deities of light and life that countered Sargon's god, Elim, the deity of darkness. Nobody in Kaad has the first fucking clue about this, and Yaztromo had to do some digging to figure it out. He and Nicodemus have been watching for Sargon, see. So hey, you fuckers brought him back, you deal with him, is basically what Yaztromo tells the party during the intro. Gives 'em a map to the secret lair, which they follow to Sargon's monastery of Elim.

    The monastery is empty, except for two things: a manticore in the courtyard, which can be fought there's rules about a bunch of doors that lead to passages around the courtyard and involve a yakkety-sax worthy chase sequence with the manticore or set loose by opening the main gate to the courtyard and letting it go. It'd rather hunt goats than deal with heavily armed adventurers. The only remaining occupant of the monastery is the goblin Giblet, a prisoner who happens to be able to be a guide to the party. He's a goblin scout who got captured by the elimites, and an exposition dump.

    Sargon's taken his army and headed to wipe Kaad off the map. He can help the party get to Kaad before the army, and hopefully shore up the defenses There's a few scenes of travel through hostile terrain--an ice wall and a swamp, including encounters with some nasty denizens of each. Then, in the middle of the swamp near Kaad, the heroes find a tribe of primitive folk who coincidentally worship Ashra and Vuh!

    And they're from a tribe called Ekaad! Coincidences abound! They recruit these guys to help, then keep moving. There's a lot more actual roleplaying stuff here that I'm skimming over, obviously, but that's the end result Next it's a deep, dark, dangerous forest. Hey, so far: mountains, tundra, swamp, forest. Rushing through all the new outdoor terrain rules, are we? Carnivorous plants and wolves and bridge trolls, oh my!

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    And then the goblin tribe. Giblet only now bothers to explain that to recruit the goblins, someone's gonna need to become the new goblin king, usurping the position from a dude named Bonebreaker. Sounds easy, right? There's literally a page and a half about jokingly harassing the player who's supposed to be becoming king by supposedly forcing him to memorize a lengthy challenge speech that must be got exactly right, but whatever.

    Then, finally, the heroes head to Kaad, where they're quite probably arrested on sight. The captain of the Kaad guard, see? He's secretly a member of Sargon's cult. He can be talked out of arresting them with sufficient rolls and paperwork and delaying long enough for someone else to arrive to check their story out and find it all reasonable, but if they just submit Anyway, once they're arrested, they end up getting released pretty quick as the guard captain is an idiot and openly discusses his plan to murder the heroes before Sargon gets there within hearing of said heroes, who are locked in a rickety, easily escaped cell at the time.

    Anyway, next, they make battle plans, with a group of people whose pertinent Special Skills include Fish Lore 12 and Useless Facts The plan is basically, the good guy armies of goblins, swampmen, and citizens of Kaad fight a battle to defend the town. The heroes distract Sargon long enough for the High Priest of Ashra and Vuh to sneak up and thwack him with a magic staff dedicated to those gods, which should knock Sargon straight back into spirit form, and hopefully the afterlife.

    If they didn't get themselves arrested, the guard captain tries to sabotage the gates. He's as miserable at that task as anything else. Finally, there's a battle. Things go according to plan with the whole Sargon distraction--the heroes mostly do their distraction thing by getting Sargon to cast Petrify spells at them and such. Once he's whacked by the staff, there's a big flash of light and there's no sign of Sargon at all We'll just have to wait for the next book to find out, right? Except that as I said when I started this book, it was pretty close to the end of the line for Fighting Fantasy, and for a long time, it was the end of the AFF system.

    Then some enterprising young fellow got his hands on the rights and made a new edition Fighting Fantasy by Zero Suit Ridley. Players get a sword, armor, a backpack, a lantern, and 2 provisions. The intro says something about a well where princes used to toss gold, and it dried up. Okay, fine, whatever. Our heroes start outside the well, and have to descend.

    Forgot to say you lit your lanterns? Then you come to a locked door. The first time you try, a magic voice warns you away, and the second time you try, the door just flies open and you go sprawling and take 1 damage. Dick GM move count: 3 Room 3 contains a dwarf and a bunch of birds. Dick GM move count: 3. They're not that interesting, nor particularly awful, so I'll mostly be skipping them. The items in the room are: A silver necklace. If you put it on it tries to choke you: pass 3 skill tests in a row or die. In your backpack it is harmless. Dick move! A leather pouch. Inside is a single gold piece.

    If you take it out and wait 15 minutes real time, remember? This will repeat indefinitely, provided the gold piece is removed every quarter hour. How the players would notice this, I have no idea. A battle axe. Dick move. A jeweled pendant. The jewel is made of ice. A torch. You already have lanterns, but hey, this is there for the taking if you actually want it. A picture of Marg the Slayer. Not exciting, valuable, or even pretty to look at. Dick GM move count: 7 Room 5 is empty. The wizard has the key to the treasure room, and if asked will agree to give it to the players if they beat a mummy.

    Dick GM move count: 8, or 9 if the players have to sit through the freeze spell. Room 6 has the mummy the wizard wants the players to kill. Dick GM move count: 10 Room 7 is a dead end. Hey, remember that mummy that comes back to life every 20 minutes? Dick GM move count: 11 Room 8 has five skeletons shackled to the wall and three chests on the ground. It was an old prison. The skeletons are window dressing, play them up if you like. Dick GM move count: 13 Room 9 is painted to look like a forest grove. Every 30 seconds after entering, the party has a 2 in 6 chance of noticing the occupant, a wood pixie.

    If the players are friendly, it creates a pile of gold that vanishes after ten minutes. If they ignore it, it gives someone warts or a big nose or something for ten minutes. Basically, no matter what, the fucking pixie is an irritating shit. Picking up from last time, our party has explored about half of this terrible dungeon, but the greatest treasures are still ahead! Room 10 is a passageway with an underground river. If he is Lucky , he swims over to her, and unless the party interferes, the pair swim away together to start a new life together.

    If the party attacks the mermaid to save a lovelorn friend, said PC will fight to defend her, returning to his senses only once she is slain. The octopus has a 4 in 6 chance of attacking if the party crosses to the north side. Dick GM move count: 16 Room 11 is an endless passageway.

    The GM is encouraged to draw this out as long as possible, changing up the description to disguise it, and let the players go as long as they want before turning back. Also, remember that Mummy from room 6, and how it comes back to life? If they can pass a SKILL test, they can jump to the other walkway, since only the walkway they entered on starts retracting. After a minute, the walkway finishes retracting, and takes another minute to return to its former position, at which point the doors unlock again. If you fall down, you die, the end.

    The doors can only be held open by a combined SKILL total of 20 or greater, and having less means a Test for Luck to avoid taking damage. Dick GM move count: 18, grudgingly Room 13 is a bedroom, and the bed is occupied. Two lizard heads can be seen on the pillows. With the three chests? One had a mouse. If for some unknown reason the group took the mouse, and for some unknown reason they decide to release it here, the stupid Calacorm jumps on the bed and acts all sissy.

    Also four keys, which are useless. The calacorm just likes collecting keys. Again nothing in this room is particularly dickish. Dick GM move count: 18 and holding Room 14 is a cavernous room with a buncha little alcoves, one of which has a spider web over it. The spider web will catch anyone trying to cut through it, and to escape Ugh, this is dumb. You have to roll 2d6 repeatedly. The first roll you make adds towards this total, and the second roll subtracts from it.

    Dick GM move count: 20 one for the stupid time wasting spiderweb and one for the bear having no chance of being spotted before it strikes Room 15 is under a spell of magical darkness. Nothing especially dickish…or maybe the rest of this fucking adventure has got me jaded. Dick GM move count: holding at 20 Room 16 is empty except for a table upon which rests a book.

    On page 11 of the book, out of twenty and the party has to page through to get there, at one attack round per page there is a spell that will open the treasure room. It goes like this: fanananana cosim patana. The correct pronunciation, according to the notes for the GM, is: fa-nah-na-nah-na co-sym pah-tah-na.

    Once the book is replaced just as it was when they entered the zombies stop coming. If, somehow, someone gets killed by the zombies, they come back as a zombie themselves. As soon as the party walks in he demands that they bow. Failure to do so results in him webbing the entire party, with the result that they have to go through, individually, the same bullshit escape system as in Room 14, with the added nonsense that any time their total drops below 0 they take 1 STAMINA damage.

    Once someone escapes, the Spider King attacks. Dick GM move count: 24 for that fucking web bullshit again. Room 18 is the treasure room. Inside the room is an unlocked, trap-free chest with the treasure…48 gold and 4 jewels worth 8 gold each. Fuck this place. Then the GM can either end it there mercy or have the players go back through the dungeon, with a wandering monster fight in every place they fought something on the way in. Hope they remembered to leave an escape rope at the well entrance!

    Edit: All told, the worthwhile treasures in this place come to gold, an amulet of fortune, a potion of stamina, a magic sword, and an emerald, plus the pouch that produces one gold piece every fifteen minutes, as long as you keep it empty. The pouch is the best thing in the whole place, and it's available in like, room 3, before you have to fight anything. The rest of the treasure is pretty shit. All right. I could tackle that next, or skip it in favor of moving on and covering The Riddling Reaver , which is a more interesting and possibly less bullshit adventure series, which includes a few additional rules.

    Alternately, I could cover highlights from Out of the Pit , which is the bestiary book, or take a look at the setting and world of Fighting Fantasy in Titan. What do people want to see? Next, weapons. In the base game, all weapons did 2 damage on a hit. Riddling Reaver presents a table to roll on when you hit, to see how much damage you do. The read-aloud text at the start of the adventure sets the scene thusly: You have been trekking across Allansia, in search of adventure, excitement—and above all treasure!

    Forsaking the western shores, you headed south, and came to the land of Kallamehr, which is ruled by the noble house of Rangor. Compared to the hardships you faced on the journey, Kallamehr promises comfort and rich pickings. Judging by the rounded bellies of the traders you have passed on the road, business must be good around here.

    The road broadens as it approaches the town of Kallamehr, and you see its famous tower looming majestically in the distance. As you draw near the town, you catch sight of the sprawling collection of buildings which huddle beneath the tower. The twisting architecture is strange to your northern eyes; it seems to have no order to it.

    You wonder how on earth people can live in such chaotic squalor. An imposing pair of gates looms before you. Strangely, no guards seem to be around, and the gates are open. You can make out the faint sound of shouting from the other side of town, but the houses block your vision and you cannot see what the commotion is about. As you stand in the gateway you hear thumping from the gatehouse to your left. Someone seems to be trying to attract your attention. Let me out! Manacled hands grip the bars, and tears stain his grubby face.

    He does not look much like a loyal citizen to you, and he has almost certainly been locked in the gatehouse for a good reason. There are no keys near by. Abandoning him to his fate, you hurry towards the sound of the crowd, which gets louder as you get closer. Carts sit unattended, stalls unguarded, and livestock runs free.

    Minutes after leaving the gate, you arrive at the central square — the scene of the commotion. Packed into the square is a vast crowd surely the entire population of Kallamehr, apart from the wretch in the gatehouse! Each pair of eyes is fixed on the top of the tower, where a spindly figure is struggling to free himself from the clutches of a short robed man, who in turn is trying to force the other off the edge of the balcony.

    The spindly man is teetering on the edge. With every twist and turn the onlookers gasp ever louder. Kallamehr is, as mentioned in that wall of words above, in the southern part of Allansia. What about Port Blacksand, the aforementioned City of Thieves? Slaves is coauthored by Steve Williams, the other half of the pair who wrote this book. As it stood at this point, it was basically a blank spot on a map.

    Titan has a lot of these, places that are briefly mentioned or named on maps but that had not appeared in the gamebooks. The writers assume, at any rate, that the players will be dashing to the rescue heroically. The door to the tower is locked, of course. The tower itself is covered in thick climbable ivy, and there are windows along the way. Wizards may have levitate spells this kind of outright breaks the fun of this setup, though or could use a Strength spell to smash the door in. Inside the door, they find a bound woman with the latest fashion in Kallamehrian headgear As they enter, she loses control and the jar of tarantulas falls off her head.

    Way to start things out on a dick move, Paul Mason and Steve Williams. The bound lady is Lady Carolina, the wife of the dude fighting for his life up there. Moving along, the next room contains…a dead dude holding a box. Nundrum revealed his true identity to Dash then slit his throat, and left the box in his hands. On the box is a riddle: If you would see what I contain and maybe learn some news of gain, solve this riddle, drop me in it, wait for the click, then pull me from it. The next room up has a caged fire-elemental type thing called a Devlin. Around the caged Devlin are half a dozen pails of water.

    Oops…someone left the cage door open! The solution here is exactly the same as the solution to the riddle on the box, only this time you have to figure it out to proceed. Chucking water on the fire thing requires a successful Test for Luck , otherwise the thing is immune to any weapons. Too late to save the Baron, of course, and the Reaver gets to tease the heroes, scooting up the flagpole like some sort of cartoon character.

    He completes his unlikely escape via an airship, but not before turning the flagpole into a giant snake SKILL 7 STAMINA 11, two successive hits on the same target causes the snake to swallow them whole, instantly killing them for the heroes to fight. Afterwards, the heroes can go figure out that they need to drop the magical box into water.

    If they have trouble with the riddle, the book suggests having Lady Carolina figure it out, if need be. After all, without Chance there is no Luck, and without either where would I be? All you have to do is solve my riddles to find where in Kallamehr they are. What am I? A white-winged fish that parts the waves, I ply the sparkling waste.

    Where am I? My belly is round And bound with iron bonds; What I carry always raises a cheer. Murder have I not done; Stolen not; cheated not; Yet a peg is beaten into my head. Where am I My coat is green and I can speak Of several things, but mostly cheek. In such a prison am I set That has more loopholes than a net.

    Ill-matched is my visage to my frame- Horns are on my head, the rest a hideous man; By fame well known through all the Allansian lands; From man and beast together is my name. Edit: I always seem to feel like my posts are longer than they actually are, comparing to some of the others in the thread. Anyone want me to make longer posts? Anyone want more background digressions? I can save all the Titan related stuff for when I cover it, or give relevant bits and pieces when they come up ahead of time, or whatever people would prefer seeing. Further edit: oh yeah. Remember how I said you can climb the tower or levitate, if you're a wizard?

    If you try to climb, you need to pass a SKILL test a few times to get up, and you can get off at any floor above the first and go up the stairs from inside. If a wizard levitates himself up, not only does he have to deal with the Reaver escaping and the giant snake on his own, he then has to go all the way down through the tower solo if his friends aren't getting in some other way and let them in through the front door himself.

    It's acknowledged as a possibility, but it's really not a very good one. The Riddling Reaver, Part 3 posted by Zero Suit Ridley Original SA post Fighting Fantasy RPG: The Riddling Reaver Act 1 — The Curse of Kallamehr, Scene 2 So, when last we left our heroes, they had failed spectacularly to rescue the Baron of Kallamehr from his untimely death at the hands of a cartoonish villain, and had been left with nothing but a mocking note containing several riddles and a promise that if they could solve the riddles and bring the stuff described therein to a specific spot, the Riddling Reaver would provide the transportation needed to track him down and make him pay.

    Not that this is a big issue for any GM worthy of the title, of course, but it would be nice if the writers of the book had thought that far ahead. He is a smartass and the GM is advised to be infuriating with him; if the PCs need help with the riddles he can provide condescending clues. Then we are given a map to show the players: And the instruction that between destinations they will have to pass through the residential area, which amounts to a random encounter table.

    Each of the locations on the map there is important and relevant or at least a place where the writers have put a scene to run. What a fucking surprise. The first thing that happens in the market square is a thief knocks over a merchant. The book assumes the PCs will fist-fuck this sorry ruffian, so whatever. Moving on. Nobody notices the PCs go in. The ridiculously-attired dude in charge is shouting out a challenge—anyone who can go against the minotaur till the sand-glass runs out and still be alive gets gp!

    The sand-glass is 7 attack rounds. After that, oh hey, one of three items down. Next stop: the Nautical Academy of Kallamehr. If he fails, he has to Test for Luck to avoid falling and taking 1d6 damage. The book suggests that clever players may bribe or talk the kids into helping them get the thing down, but no real guidance is provided for adjudicating this beyond reinforcing that these kids are little shits. Little shits indeed, either way. Eventually, by whatever means, the PCs engage in petty vandalism to get the ship-shaped weathervane, and should now have two of the three items required for passage.

    The Parrot in the Cage inn is an unsavory place. The cask of ale can be bought for a paltry sum. What are they? The first is the Flesh and Pen Emporium, which is a tattoo shop. Normal tattoos are a gold or two, but the Dwarven proprietor knows the secrets of inking magical tattoos, for 25 gold each.

    The available magic tattoos are: Rising Sun — bearer can endure cold temperatures, wind, and rain with no effect. Eagle - Improves distance and acuity of vision. Cobra — When revealed in combat, the opponent must make a SKILL check or be hypnotized for one attack round, allowing an automatic hit from the bearer of the tattoo. Works only once per opponent. These tattoos can never be removed, and only one per character can be inked. The other location on the map is a bathhouse.

    Dappa points out how rare this sort of thing is, because this location is about being a dick to your players, and suggests that the influential members of the Bathhouse Club may be able to help them.

    Upon spending the 5 gold each to get in, characters are told to strip and divest themselves of weapons and gear, receiving only a towel to wear into the bathhouse. They are then directed to a pool. Nobody else is apparently present, until they enter the bath, at which point the doors swing shut and some fat guys up on a balcony will start laughing and dump six electric eels into the water. Each eel can do that twice, total.

    Defeating the eels only causes another six to be sent down. The doors lead out to an alleyway behind the bathhouse.

    Download PDF Into the Void (The Dungeoneers Book 36)

    At that point a magical ship shows up to carry them to their unknown destination. I remembered The Riddling Reaver as a whole being fairly entertaining. I mean, even at ten I could tell that the shit in Fighting Fantasy core was a load of fuck-you bullshit. But somehow I read through this and decided it was something that I could run. I flipped ahead a bit, and it turns out that Acts 3 and 4 actually look somewhat decent. Honestly, a campaign where you start off having the PCs press ganged onto a ship and subsequently shipwrecked at the opening of the third act would probably be moderately fun.

    Not great, but not…this. Location 7 is the cabin belonging to the ex-Captain of the Twice Shy , and is now inhabited by his poltergeist. If they leave the room without disturbing anything, nothing really happens. In the drawer, there are 20gp. Location 8 is the map room. Poking or prodding it sets the real ship to lurching violently, probably causing damage to everyone in the party. That big furball on the map is a sleeping creature called a Jib-jib. Players who leave the room hoping it will calm down the best choice under the circumstances hear the yowling continue for about a minute before it quiets down and falls back to sleep.

    If someone pulls the cover off, it animates, makes fun of everyone, and then teleports each pc into one of the paintings on the wall. To escape the PCs have to stop the bad shit from happening. Attacking the now-inanimate portrait does fuck-all. If everyone fails, hey, game over I guess? Does that hold up for the last 3 rooms? Location 10! Another big black portal of darkness. When the film premiered at film festivals, it was initially shown in a version without any credits. A minute version of the film competed in the main competition of the Cannes Film Festival. So I had to put it back into my belly, that is to say to tweak many details.

    Festival screenings of subsequent versions followed throughout the year, including the Toronto , Sitges , London , and Stockholm international film festivals. When it was released in France, it used the English title. The running time was therefore minutes at 25 frames per second, which the director had instructed that the film should be played at, or minutes at the more common 24 frames per second. He describes it as "some astro-visions, an orgy scene with Linda and the Japanese girl, the scene where you see [Oscar] waking up at the morgue and he thinks he's alive but he's not, and then the camera goes down the plughole where she's tipping his ashes.

    Each edition features both the complete version and the shorter cut. Thomas Sotinel of Le Monde started his review by recalling the irritation the film caused upon its world premiere in Cannes, and compared the cut he had seen there to the final version: "In all honesty, the difference does not jump to my eyes. Of course, the film seems more consistent, but that may be because we've already traveled this maze once. While leaving, we might remain calmer, but still amazed by the mixture of exuberant invention and puerility. He applauded how he found the strobe lights hypnotising in a way that influenced the perception of time.

    Soporific cinema. Upon the Japanese release, the critic writing for The Japan Times reflected: "If Lost in Translation is the film you'd make when all you know about Japan are the pampered press junkets at Shinjuku 5-star hotels, then Enter the Void is what you would make if you never got beyond the Roppongi pub-crawl. Peter Bradshaw included the film in The Guardian ' s top 50 films of the decade so far, [52] and gave it five stars out of five.

    Enter the Void is, in its way, just as provocative, just as extreme, just as mad, just as much of an outrageous ordeal[. But despite its querulous melodrama and crazed Freudian pedantries, it has a human purpose the previous film lacked, and its sheer deranged brilliance is magnificent.

    Andrew Male rated the film two out of five in Empire. Male called it "technically stunning", but also "dreadfully acted, tediously 'profound' and painfully overlong", and accused the director of misogyny. She thought that the characters lacked emotional depth and called the story "a lame fusion of stoner lifestyle, sexual fetish, and philosophical inquiry", but still ended the review: "I could stare at this movie for days and not get tired of the sensation.

    A mash-up of the sacred, the profane, and the brain-dead, Enter the Void is addictive. And no, the fact that it's intentionally excruciating doesn't make it less excruciating. In a international critics' poll conducted by BBC , three critics listed Enter the Void as one of the greatest motion pictures since The film was a financial failure ; according to Wild Bunch in February , the film had returned 1.

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Theatrical release poster. Long Version: minutes [2] International Version: minutes [3]. France Germany Italy [1] [4]. Cinematic context Cinema of France Oneiric film theory Lists List of drug films List of films featuring hallucinogens List of films set in Japan List of ghost films Thematically related Near-death experience Recreational drug use. Retrieved 19 January British Board of Film Classification. Retrieved 7 December The Numbers. Retrieved 23 July New York. Retrieved 15 January Enter the Void press kit.

    Wild Bunch. Retrieved 30 June Tribeca Enterprises. Archived from the original on 21 March Retrieved 13 June Brant Publications. Retrieved 15 September Twitch Film. Retrieved 22 September Den of Geek. Dennis Publishing. Retrieved 10 September Excessif in French. Retrieved 10 August Retrieved 21 June Cannes Film Festival. Retrieved 5 July Retrieved 28 November The New York Times.

    Retrieved 7 January Retrieved 15 August The Guardian. British Film Institute. Retrieved 25 September Retrieved 4 October Musik Industry. Retrieved 17 October The A. The Onion. Retrieved 21 July Retrieved 11 August American Cinematographer. Retrieved 5 October Independent Film Channel. Retrieved 24 September The Quietus.

    Retrieved 18 October Verband Junger Journalisten Berlin-Brandenburg. Retrieved 2 September Screen International. Archived from the original on 21 July L'Express in French. Wild Bunch International Sales. Archived from the original on 14 March Retrieved 26 July Allocine in French. The Japan Times. Archived from the original on 20 May Retrieved 23 September The Wall Street Journal.

    Retrieved 21 September Vice Magazine UK. London: Vice Magazine Publ. Retrieved 7 October Retrieved 18 September Le Monde in French. Retrieved 3 September Ouest-France in French. Archived from the original on 12 May Rotten Tomatoes.