Yesterday Rite Publishing started an entirely new product line for Pathfinder with the release of the Adventure Quarterly Issue #1. It’s a product directed at Game Master’s, featuring what we need the most: help to mastering memorable and interesting adventures to our players.
To this end Adventure Quarterly Issue #1 is packed with content : in it’s 75 pages it includes three complete adventures for different player levels, a very nice Random Tribal Name Generator (from Creighton Broadhurst at Raging Swan Press) and an extensive description of the Forked Legion organization, which players could meet in one of the adventures.
As for the electronic release it consist two parts: the book itself and more than 200 MB of maps. The later are presented in a nice color format with clear map legend and available in multiple file formats. The book itself also looks good, features a clear design and has exactly as much interior art as needed.
As I mentioned the book contain three adventures from three different ENnie award winning designers, each of them showing their different approach to a common goal : to provide a memorable and unique adventure to the players.
Too Many Cooks by Adam Dangle is the first adventure in the book, and it’s suitable for a first level adventuring party. In this story the players should stop a local villain, a chef who wants to literally eliminate the opposition. I think it’s a good story with a unique enemy, with only few minor problems.
My main complaint that the main villain as presented couldn’t use the wands he possess, as he is not a spellcaster, but I think replacing some of his expert levels with adept levels should do the trick. (my bad, I didn't recognized his Use Magic Device skill) Other from that, if the players try to solve the mystery too fast and overextend themselves, they could get killed very easily. This is something the Game Master should look out.
The Book of Promises by Tim Connors is my favorite out of the three adventures. It’s a story for level 5 characters, and as it turns out the players have to find and destroy a minor artifact and save the souls of one thousand people. I really like that the adventure includes many different factions with different agendas and power level, more than one meaningful and hard decision for the players (like the one with the hags) and a really good location. I really like that the NPC-s in this one really feels deep, and they all have they own motivations and plans. The details on the Forked Legion organization in the end of the book is just icing on the cake.
The last adventure, Soul Siphon by Tim Hitchcock is for four 12th level psionic characters. It’s intended to play with the four pre-generated character included in the book, as they are tied to the background and NPC-s of the story. This means that this adventure is mostly usable as stand alone module, rather than as a part of a campaign which (as tying a story to specific characters) has it’s own up- and downsides. Apart from that it’s really an adventure to those who like D&D 3.5 psionics, as it has a lot of it. I think Soul Siphon is good, but I think it’s theme and that it couldn’t be fitted to most Pathfinder campaign could limit that how many people will play it compared to the others.
As additional content, the Random Tribal Name Generator is a really helpful and easy to use little gadget, exactly as we used to receive from Creighton Broadhurst and Raging Swan Press. The Orcs of the Ebon Gouged Eye and others are just a few rolls away!
I have to say that I’m really happy to see Adventure Quarterly as a new product. I think that with the excellent content and reasonable price it’s absolutely deserves 5/5 points and my recommendations.
Zoltán “Cain” Mészáros