Thursday, August 8, 2019

The Vaults of Obryn Sapravda Review — Old School Feel with Printable Maps

With there nothing new that really caught my interest, I went back to my wish list for older stuff I hadn't got around to buying and bought this, The Vaults of Obyrn Sapravda, apparently published way back in 2010 for 1e (amazingly enough, adapted from 4e).  The price of $7 is probably what put me off, but it's 110 or so pages. Alas, most (say 60% ) of that 110 pages are maps meant to be printed out and used as battle maps, not unlike TSR's experiment with that in the Indiana Jones days.

The name reminded me of something from Clark Ashton Smith, and even the premise does. One magic-user wants the PCs to check up on the welfare of another magic-user who he hasn't heard from for a while. Although ostensibly for 4th to 6th level characters, there seems to be nothing in the module that wouldn't be suitable for 1st (or at most 2nd) level characters, at least if players are clever enough to avoid the tougher monsters (who are meant to be avoided).

The layout is somewhat confusing. There's a first level, then two more levels (goblin caves and a tomb), then the second and third levels. Five levels in all, but some are shortish.

The wizard's lair has been taken over by goblinoids - goblins, hobgoblins, and ogres - mostly the former on the first two levels, the latter two on the later levels. Unlike last week's adventure review, the goblins are only sort of sneaky - they have some ambush points but nothing too devious. There are some complications on the second level, their actual lair, where terrain becomes important (sand pits and a grabby but immobile monster).

The tomb level is something of a puzzle level. It's a tomb area for an evil cult, where burial goods (treasure) is revealed only when a burial ceremony is performed. The PCs need to do this and then run with what treasure they can grab. The last level of the dungeon was the wizard's living area and has some amusing traps.

Treasure is handled kinda oddly. Rather than every room having a listing of the treasure (some do), some of it is on cards you place on the map. Overall it's okay on magic, but rather light on monetary treasure.

The PDF is kinda weird. All the maps are in the PDF, rather than separate and each room description has a map of the room right by it. You don't get a look at each level of the dungeon as a whole until the end of the module and the beginning of the maps section. There's a fair amount of original art and views of the room from inside.
The Vaults of Obryn Sapravda is an interesting module but likely would require a lot of work (not to mention color ink and paper) to run and also require intelligent, cautious players.  However, I can see the right players having a lot of fun with it. If you're the sort that likes visual adventures with paper maps, it's worth a look, even at its highish price.

No comments:

Post a Comment