Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Review: The Half-Dead City

Okay, so as I mentioned in an earlier post I recently re-subscribed to Paizo's Pathfinder Adventure Path because the new one is set in the not-Egypt land of Osirion.  I just finished reading the first installment of the Mummy's Mask path, The Half-Dead City, this evening.  Overall, I like it a lot.  The locations are plenty Egypt-y enough to make me happy plus there are great fantasy RPG touches.

The adventure is almost all dungeon crawls with a town to recover in and wander about.  There are the expected bestiary with some new monsters and treasury with some new magic items, all with the Egyptian theme.  There is a really nice section on the setting, the city of Wati, including a map and plenty of location descriptions.  The book also has the serialized fiction section typical of Paizo's adventure paths; the story was okay, but very heavy on combat details.  However it was set in one of the inns of Wati and included a map and description of the inn for use in play.

There were only two things which I wasn't happy about.  One is the basic premise of the adventure, which posits that the temple of the goddess of the afterlife is authorizing people to tomb-raid the large necropolis at Wati.  Teams are given locations by lottery to investigate--provided they do not directly disturb any bodies.  That just doesn't sit quite right with me but most players would probably be fine with it.  The other is that there is a rival team of NPCs with whom they will tangle.  On the one hand, most groups of NPCs in these adventures are not really tough enough to put up much of a fight if it comes to that.  On the other hand each one gets an extensive write-up which becomes a total waste of page space in the book if the PCs kill them off.

Bottom Line: I like it and am looking forward to the next installment.

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