In this series I will be looking at modules, freely available from Dragonsfoot, and giving my opinion on them. I may also sparkle some new ideas that any body may use freely with. Articles in this series will be split into four segments: Set Up, Antagonists, Treasure, and a short Final Review. I recommend this module for a party 0f four seven to ninth level players. Without further distraction, let’s get this started.
Upon opening the module we are greeted by a decent page of back story, covering the Temple of Diancecht, and why your players are going there. Two Adventurers, a monk, Baleron; and a fighter, Ejia, were sent to the temple to search for any mystical honey which may still be in the keep. Guess what, they didn’t return, now the town’s clerics are turning to the party to find them.
Behind almost every attack on the PCs in or around the temple is the temple’s new controller, the Illusionist Duneen. In his employ is a treant, a very unluky minion who now looks like a bush, a lamia, lizard folk, a minotaur, and his wife Medusa, Cacona. There are also one or two trapped or hidden creatures in the catacombs below.
Outside the temple players will like fight rust birds. Small birds who will try to dissolve your metallic weapons, then eat them. Your party may also stumble onto a group of hill giants, but what is a small group of rockheads to them anyway. In the forest the players will encounter a treant, with the unnatural ability to turn sticks into snakes, and as the group finally reaches the entrance they will have to contend with a weak minion, made to look like a bush from his wand of wonder.
Once inside the temple you should do your best to freak out your players. Your first opportunity comes fairly soon as not far from the main entrance is a stone golem, but not to worry it won’t move or will it? Further inside players will meet Cacona and her bodyguard. She will appear human until hit by an attack, so if you can draw on her illusion as long as you can. Her bodyguard is a tough fighter, so make sure your players keep an eye on him.
Beneath the temple are a series of rooms, each hosting a very different threat. For instance If players open a sealed room, so old the magic runes on the front are all but wiped off, a bone devil will be waiting, or if they go down the wrong hallway, they will have to defeat a lamia. As a final climactic encounter the PCs will be faced with Baleron and Ejia, the two missing adventurers, being controlled by Duneen. All three of the opponents are level 8, and if the players don’t play right, death should be likely.
After running through this adventure players should find themselves in no lack of gold, or at least objects with significant gold value. After fighting Cacona and her bodyguard, your group will find itself in possession of two very valuable rings, a sentient sword, and a painting worth plenty more.
In the below levels the players will find many more valuables. In the lamia’s lair alone your group will find 1,500 gold pieces. Elsewhere they will find honey, with equivalent powers to sweet water. Oh, and if the thief gets a double strength rotting disease from piking through corpses of the dead, there is a staff of curing stored inside a sarcophagus.
Even all of those things combined is not of equal value to the treasure at the end. There is however one problem. The chest this treasure is stored in is surrounds by a ten foot wide section of phantasmal floor. Assuming your players find a way around this, the treasure is theirs and now own more than 20,000 gold pieces in decorative amulets and jewelery.
This module is well crafter, but lacks some depth I would have liked to see. The enemies look to make for a challenging crawl, and the treasure pay off is wort the fight. Assuming the party finds everything of value, more then 100,000 gold pieces are going to be in order. I do wish the document was a little better formatted and GM friendly, however this is of almost no consequence. I give this module, The Temple of Diancecht by Lawrence R. Mead and Edward Winter, a solid 3.5 out of 5 Dancing Vorpal Swords of Wyrmbane.