Saturday, January 17, 2015

The New Free OSR AD&D 1st Edition Module From Dragon's Foot -The Barrow of the Moon Druid By The Oliver Brothers For Your Old School Sword and Sorcery Campaigns

Grab It Right

Sweet mother of Tiamat, I go to sleep last night and wake up to brand new module on Dragon's foot for AD&D first edition for a basic set of level of level 2-4 players! I'm not sure who the Oliver Brothers are but man I'm going to keep my eye on 'em.
The Barrow of the Moon Druid is very exciting on a number of levels. First this is a free download and that right there is one of the exciting things about this module.

Right off the bat just from thumbing through the pdf of the The Barrow Of The Moon Druid, one get's the sense of the pulp and dark fantastic about this module. The artwork evokes a sense of 1930's Weird Tales mix in with a 1970's TSR style module.

The introduction goes into the dark and twisted background: 
What lies inside the ancient barrow of the moon druid Arasgain? Only those of stout heart should endeavour to survive the perils inside. An adventure for character levels 2-4.

Right in the introduction the of the adventure, the authors lay out the parameters of the adventure. This module can easily and conveniently be inserted into the backdrop of the DM's old school campaign with little to no fuss. Here's the module's back blurb and it spells out how to use the module : 

As your party travels the Old Road which cuts a path through the dangerous moorlands,
you spy an old barrow sitting off in the distance. An old gnarled tree, the only tree to be
seen on the moor, sits atop the barrow watching over the round door set back deep in
the mound. What possible treasures lie within the barrow mound, the one said to be the
burial location of the Moon Druid? Who within the party will be brave enough to enter
The Barrow of the Moon Druid?
Contents :
The Barrow of The Moon Druid is both a location based adventure & a tradition crawl with some twists into the back drop. The is a place with a deep and abiding pulp style history and the darkness of the location colours the landscape and ideas of the module.
Encounters are balanced, concise, and deadly for an AD&D 1st edition or
OSRIC style module. Looking over this one, a clever DM could adapt this one to OD&D with some slightly of hand and number crunching. 
Here the Barrow adventure itself is laid out in pretty clear detail but with lots of room for DYI conversions into the back drop of module.
The maps are clearly and very well done. This is a twenty seven page module with two parts to the adventure location The Barrow Part I and The Moon curse Part II with some defining NPC's and events that surround the whole of the adventure worked in solidly into the background and history of the place.  This also sets up the new  monsters and it has definitive nods right back to First Edition AD&D Deities and Demigods. Note that the Oliver brothers know exactly how this book was intended to be used and do so with style in this adventure. This is pretty damn complex plotted lower level adventure module.
All of this ties neatly and somewhat nicely into the backdrop of the module which incidently has a Celtic/Sword & Sorcery feel. Elements of this module could and should be used for a Lovecraftian cult, and its black miracles. Yes this is that well done.
 There is a boat load of new material packed into the setting,history, monsters of this adventure.
All in all this is an essential hardcore sword and sorcery AD&D 1st edition module with all of the trimmings with the potential to be used extensively as a 'drop in' adventure location.

The Barrow of the Moon Druid
By The Oliver Brothers
For Your Old School Sword and Sorcery Campaigns 

I've said before that this is a fantastic old school module and do I think that it could be used for a sword and sorcery campaign? The answer is a resounding,'yes'. The adventure is done in such a way as to be fully contained within itself and this is its core strength.
The Barrow of the Moon Druid could easily be converted into a number of AD&D style clones with little issue. My idea would be to use it is a part and parcel for a Hyperborean Celtic back point for Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea campaign. Because of the system of that retroclone its so easy to do a conversion and given the motives of the NPC's there's a clear line of sight to drop in the module into the mix.
For other retroclones such as Lamentations of the Flame Princess and other retroclones of weird aspect, some element base conversions are going to be needed. That being said the bench mark of this module with the character levels works very well for an OD&D style campaign with the usual conversions as necessary.
All in all this is one very well done module whose authors dedication and passion for the hobby shines through. You can see the amount of work that goes into these and the sense of fun that appears behind the work . All in all, I personally think that this is a free download worth your time. Happy gaming and keep em rolling. 

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