Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Dungeon Delve (Wizards of the Coast)

DD was (when announced) the only WotC 4e book not to make it on my to-buy list. I thought the concept was dumb. But, half-starved from a lack of decent 4e releases lately (it’s been a least a week since Mists was released) I drove and picked it up as soon as it got to my FLGS. And as it turns out, I was pleasantly surprised. Each delve (there are 30, one for each level) is started by a ½ page of introductory fluff, a small map and tips for expanding the delve into a full-blown adventure. You are then presented with 3 increasingly harder encounters (for each level, so 90 encounters in total), tied together in the small dungeon (a few seem way too small for the numbers and size of monsters) which is buildable with the Dungeon Tiles sold by WotC (for each delve it is stated which tile sets are needed). At the beginning of the book, there is also some guidelines on reskinning the monsters and tweaking the dungeon delves. You get 42 brand new monsters and 7 "fairly new" monsters (reprinted from Open Grave, Draconomicon and Manual of the Planes), although a few are just leveled versions of monsters we have seen before. Anyway, as I read the book, it struck me that it’s good helper for those times in campaigns where you need the players to get a bit more xp before starting on something else – sort of like an expanded version of a book of random encounters. It’s a book of random dungeons! It’s hardly going to revolutionize the industry, but overall, it’s a useful book that a lot of DM’s ought to at least consider.
Rating:* * * *

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