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DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e) $2.99
Average Rating:4.2 / 5
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DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
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DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Mark C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/28/2018 13:09:10

As many reviewers have noted, Secrets of Sokol Keep is a good adventure/mystery. It's got nothing in the way of any real surprises, but even coloring by the numbers can yield a nice picture. This is a solid beginning level adventure that starts sort of slow and aimless, but quickly focuses attention on murder and mystery.

That said, the writing and editing are pretty bad, especially the editing. I doubt there's a single page of text without at least one subject-verb error, incomplete sentence, et cetera. It seems the only editing that was done was to click the spellcheck button on whatever word processor was used to type the text. Also, some of the writing itself is cringe-worthy, such as "Unless a character intentionally does something intentionally to draw their attention, the guards merely rudely shove their way past them to get inside the tavern."

Ug.

There's never a reason to include four adverbs in one sentence.

If you can ignore the bad writing and wade through the poor text organization, however, Secrets of Sokol Keep is worth a session.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Derrick C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/22/2018 14:46:22

Solid introduction to Phlan, though if your players are not paying attention or fail a few rolls, they can miss a large chunk of the story. I typically adjust some of the information when I see my party composition, giving a little more here or there



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Paige L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/10/2018 10:42:46

This is a solid adventure that helps flesh out the city of Phlan. While the adventure is pretty straightforward (and starts in the classic and traditional way for so many D&D campaigns!), the interesting choice is how the PCs are going to choose to tell the story going forward. Includes a mix of interesting RP opportunities and martial conflicts.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Rachel S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/08/2018 11:29:13

As a DM I really loved this adventure. Its all a big mystery that the players have to solve. Unfortunately if Velma isn't in the group your Scooby gang will probably be a little confused by a few of the missing pieces, namely the ghost that was pulling certain strings. I had to give them that meta knowledge part at the end for them to get the ah-ha moment. That's the only reason why I didn't give this one 5 starts. If you can work that more smoothly with your DM skills then this is a really awesome adventure.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Jacob M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/21/2017 10:18:57

I (DM) and my PCs really liked the sluthing and mystory of this module. I added some extra flavor to it in order to suit the campain but in general, this was great. Players specificly commented on how much fun it was for them.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Alain P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/23/2017 23:51:02

Secrets of Sokol Keep presents an interesting mini-sandbox and provides good details about npc motivations, but what stood out to me was the different flavor of adventure than most modules. In the initial set up roleplaying is king as 1 question leads into another until it culminates in a classic dungeon dive. In my experiences running this module, I leaned heavily into the suspense, mystery and horror tropes and my party ate it up. A nice mod to change the pace on your players from a story perspective, and though the final dungeon was enjoyable it feels a little quick. Aside from the combat encounters being a little too vanilla, this mod still can bring it with the mysterious premise and great roleplaying opportunites. 3.75/5



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Jeffrey W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/09/2017 23:12:15

It's hard to go wrong when it all starts with a tavern brawl. The dark secrets of Sokol Keep will happily show you that it's not impossible, however!

A solid tavern-to-dungeon-and-back adventure that gives you something to sink your shortsword into.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Thomas B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/07/2017 07:44:49

the quality is about what you would expect from an official AL adventure (i.e. the combat is poorly balanced, the important or useful information is burred in between paragraphs of useless boilerplate text, and the writing is the most hamfisted available) but it's otherwise fine.

Insult to injury: The maps and text are split into little vertical slices, Like some digital paper-shredder puzzle, making it impossible to copy text into game notes or print maps. Probably some ridiculous form of copy protection, because why would you allow DMs to print maps or take notes from an adventure they paid for? much better to screw DMs who paid for this. can't have any player complaints if your DMs quit because of your crappy copy protection and don't run any players!



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Jim B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/05/2017 10:31:36

Fairly new (back) to DM'ing. It could use a bit of streamlining in play, otherwise it's quite difficult to keep under 4 hours when you have a gamestore table (read: social time). The lack of maps for the second part is a bit disconcerting, but easily resolved with my own constructs.

Final dungeon crawl went pretty fast - a couple of the encounters don't seem to scale well to Very Strong parties.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/28/2017 16:35:55

I have both plyed and DM'ed this module. A good solid dungeon crawl with some RP thrown in. This was my first DDAL adventure and will always have a special place for me. My wife's first DDAL as well, and she is still playing. The final fight can be scaled nicely depending on the party resources. Very enjoyable!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by nathan s. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/24/2017 15:31:34

Spoilers*

Great timing, great combat balance. Player's found the lighthouse outage to be a confusing mcguffin, somewhat anti-climactic in its resolution. We were not sure that the lighthouse added anything to the story in the end. Player's also commonly mistook the identify of their ghostly companion for that of the missing Quartermaster, Igan. While these two elements were confusing for them, the flow was spectacular. The story gave a lot of options for non-combat resolutions, making it uniquely well suited for a variety of player types. There were a few small quirks to the adventure, like hiding the altar of Tyr in the east tower made little sense to the players and was sort of a misleading red herring. There wasn't enough information in the Moonsea Cults text to really feel satisfying.

For DM's doing homebrew, I would recommending having the Altar of Tyr not be hidden. Any defeat of Grim immediately lights the lighthouse. The Ghost is Igan.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Brian M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/12/2017 21:45:13

Although I enjoyed running this adventure a couple issues did cause some problems. Such as the dialog prior to the barfight where people were mixed up as to saying things that ended confusing the PC group and had to be immediately changed to make more sense. Second, while it's nice for the GM to know where the ghost haunts on the island, no indications of how to summon her to meet or talk nor options for an encounter are given save where she throws a 'clue' at the PCs (which didn't happen) or causes things to fall over to help find secret doors (also didn't happen as they found all the earlier clues and found the way through on their own). In short, they solved the mystery, defeated the threats and overcame all obscacles, caught and brought the guilty group to justice and restored the lighthouse only to earn the minimal experience amount because they didn't talk to the ghost and left all the house money and baubles alone. Will someone either offer more options or help me with a recount please?



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/11/2017 15:17:56

This module does a better job as an introductory module than DDEX1-1. Great for new players, enjoyable by veterans.

Opening the module in a tavern is a smart move, allowing time for the players to interact with the barkeep and the other players in a more casual setting, which is a good introduction to roleplaying. A good ol’ tavern brawl is always appreciated, with one of my players betting with one of the NPCs on the result of brawl. I made a little adjustment to the brawl so that the players would roleplay the brawl instead of making it a combat with initiatives and rolls. The following interactions that allows them to gather information from various NPCs are also nice, especially when the different NPCs have distinctively different personalities to keep the conversations fresh (looking at you fellow DMs, voice-act the heck out of them).

The Sokol Keep itself has the right balance between non-linearity and details for them to explore. With the right amount of content and flexibility for the players to investigate creatively, but not too much details to bore them. Discovering the underground part of the island marks a good transition from exploring the keep to the “serious” stage of the dungeon, with the underground cave being a lights-out zone, and the sense of danger that they could be ambushed with every step. Fighting undead creatures in an unlit cave is pretty much a typical (and effective) trope for RPGs, and the Ghouls make for a huge challenge for the low-level characters. The final combat with Igar-turned-Zombie and the final confrontation with Grim & the Black Fist Guards tie up the loose ends of the story arc pretty well, which make the players feel rewarding to find out the truth behind all their previous investigations.

Some little trivia whilst I ran this module:

  1. My table ran an intimidation tactic against the poor servants on the island, scared the heck out of them, and pissed off Harae from the get go.
  2. I made the player unlock each of the three drawers in Igar’s quarter individually, and have the players discover different kinds of junk (a bunch of scratch paper, unused stationery, and a copy of “Steamy Romance Novel”). Yay for DM liberty!
  3. Similarly, they found some unwashed laundry and a very smelly sock when investigating the guard’s quarters.
  4. A warlock used Prestidigitation to make himself look like a Super Sayan and yelled at Grim when he sneaked out to see what was going on. My table really LOVES scare tactics.


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by lowell s. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/05/2017 21:59:03

This module seems to have it all. Good RPing situations. Good investigation . Good combat



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX1-02 Secrets of Sokol Keep (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Daniel D. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/31/2017 08:58:26

I've had a chance to do this as both a player and a DM. It has a good combination of RP and investigation, mystery solving, and dungeon crawl. Very fun to run and play. I'm going to try to make this my "Déjà vu" DM quest adventure. A few tips for running this. The adventure is a bit too restrictive on interactions with Harae. Things go a lot easier if she can communicate more easily with the characters. "Yes/No" through tipping the scales on the holy symbol on the altar works well. Maybe a yes/no "ouiji board" could be improvised with a quill. It's hard to come up with a way to communicate to the players that Harae put out the light. Also, when they visit the beacon, that's just a dead end and doesn't offer any real clues or leads. It can be disheartening, but things will pick up when they explore the towers.
I was able to get this done in 4 hours with a table of 5 players. In the fight with the skeletons and zombies, a cleric will likely use turn-undead before the ghould arrive, making them a really devious addition to the fight a few rounds later.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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