…and so we have the new Legacy of Fire adventure path swinging into gear, with House of the Beast (by Tim Hitchcock) forming part two of six.
It’s a dungeon crawl… but it’s a fairly interesting one, partly because it’s not really a “dungeon” crawl, more of a “temple crawl”. Some thought has been put into making the temple at least somewhat realistic, so instead of random monsters forming encounter after another, you instead get a living society (which is not necessarily 100% hostile towards the PCs) with multiple factions. This, to my mind, adds considerably to the interest level. In a somewhat unusual move, a long period of downtime is specified to have happened before this installment. The idea is that the PCs have “liberated” a small town from the clutches of gnoll raiders, and now they have actually been given time to build on that – build reputations, perhaps help govern the place, make friends (or enemies). Another nice touch.
The story, this time, starts when a wandering priest enters town limits and warns of a new growing gnoll war horde gathering at a far-off temple, under the leadership of the self-styled Carrion King responsible for the earlier raids. The PCs could just wait for them to attack or they could take the fight to them. It’s assumed that PCs choose the latter option, which to be honest is quite likely; especially so since the priest has some additional information which makes attack a tempting option…
I mostly liked this. Even though it’s a “dungeon crawl” as noted, it’s a fairly interesting one and there are lots of opportunities to make the PCs’ overland voyage to the “House of the Beast” an interesting one. I actually have only one niggle here: the planned actual goal of the module (which isn’t what the PCs/players imagine it is). Without giving away spoilers: the plot assumes that the PCs find something at the temple, something that is of key importance to the rest of the adventure path. What if the PCs just do the usual “kill & loot” routing and don’t find/notice the critical thing? At that point, some creative GM juggling will be required. To its credit, the adventure does note that this is an issue, and that the GM needs to have some alternate plans ready.
So, with 2 installments accounted for, Legacy of Fire looks like a very fun “Arabian Nights” -style adventure so far.