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CCC-GARY01-03: The Gary Con 2017 Story Arc $12.99
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by James E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/24/2017 00:03:24

Despite the Gygax name attached to this module, it is incredibly amateurishly made. There are some interesting ideas present that could make for a fun adventure but it is marred by problems.

  • The adventure also suffers from problems related to the author not really knowing what characters are capable of doing. When I ran it, there was one yuan-ti in the party and their immunity to poision starts the story with a non-trivial narrative discontinuity and negates a significant number of traps early on.
  • A gimmick that encourages players to disarm and leave all gear behind in part one certainly looked like an interesting way to make the adventure feel different but from a game design standpoint is extremely problematic because it weakens heavily armored characters while leaving magic users basically at full power. Mechanics that reward those that are already more powerful are questionable design at best.
  • Roleplay and trap heavy mods usually include XP for overcoming the challenge and often players are rewarded for doing so. However, in order to get treasure or XP in many parts of this module, you need to just flail around until you trigger the trap. That's not good design vis-a-vis the three pillars of adventure.
  • Part 2 feels entirely phoned in. There are two unrelated puzzles that were not completely thought out. One is dependent on a map that is only available if you buy a supplemental map and illustration pack and the other appears to be based on a reference that none of us at the table knew. The entire part is short and mechanically boring.
  • The price point being an extra 50% higher than typical CCC for the given duration put me in a sour mood to begin with. Failing to know enough about how the DM's guild works so that you could buy a bundle which enables you to buy one module to see how you like it also reeks a bit of gouging because they can since they don't even have the excuse that they did the extra work of rearranging things to make it easier to use and limiting the boilerplate text to only part one (it would have been better if the three mods were put into PDF merge since then at least footers would correspond to what module you were doing). The "optional" maps and illustration pack being separate would be much more reasonable if there weren't portions of the adventure that referred to a map for the layout of a room. Not including certs for 6 of the items available, forgetting to include items in the summary treasure section, giving out story awards that the author admits they haven't figure out, typos, and missing monsters complete the feeling that this was put together by someone who isn't really ready for prime time.

I have not yet run part 3 but it looks to be better than the first two from reading over it. But even if it is the greatest module ever written, it'd be hard to justify running/playing the other parts of it.

[2 of 5 Stars!]
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CCC-GARY01-03: The Gary Con 2017 Story Arc
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