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CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface $2.99 $2.24
Average Rating:4.1 / 5
Ratings Reviews Total
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CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
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CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Anna P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/24/2019 07:32:49

Cool adventure. If you want to make grungs encounter more funny use volo variant for poison. Nice balance between combat and roleplay.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by A customer [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/24/2018 01:30:29

I ran this at my LGS as a last-minute table picking up random players, and I had about 15 minutes ahead of time to read the mod. I picked it as an interesting mod that no one had played or DMed. #AdventurersLeague #AdventureCalls

REPEAT: This review is from the perspective of an unprepared DM running the mod while reading it for the first time.

The Good

  • Story was interesting enough for a 2-hour mod. Decently written.
  • For someone who was ransacking the mod to stay 5 minutes ahead of the players, the mod was well organized. I could skim the most important points quickly, let the table start deciding what to do next, and then fill in the details.

The Not-so-Good

  • The first fight did not scale down to weak well. My party was "weak", with four adventurers level 1, 3, 3, and 4. The 5x chitines looked like they were heading toward an undeserved TPK when two of them decided they wanted to abduct the party's unconscious cleric. 15 attacks per round (5 NPCs with multiattack) is a bit much unless the party is mix-maxed. This is the major reason I'm giving only 3 stars.
  • Quite possibly due to skimming the mod, I didn't figure out why there were dead grung in the grung village. Killed by chitine, maybe? Most mods set the scene for the adventure, but few provide a short summary of the adventure's story arc -- those are incredibly helpful when present.


Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by John C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/05/2018 14:11:42

This module is wonderful. I ran it for a group which included several first time gamers, and despite having multiple level 1 characters, I found I had to scale it very little. With 7 people and an average party level of 2 I actually found myself adjusting the difficulty slightly UP in some areas.

If you're a fan of H.P. Lovecraft and other Weird Fiction authors, this is a fantastically fun adventure with a lot of surprises waiting. I had a lot of fun describing the scenery and watching the faces around the table respond in shock, horror, awe, and excitement at various times. Dungeons and Dragons games can be full of wonder and excitement and amazing things without needing a lich or demon lord- low level play can (and should) be just as marvelous. I think this module delivers that in a tight, easy package you can absolutely complete in a single session.

If you're tired of low level games where your party investigates the spooky basement of a tavern and fights a giant rat, then I recommend this product. It's got some great surprises up its sleeve and is a fantastic way to kick off a Tomb of Annihilation game, but my table had so much fun I ran the other 2 parts of the Squamous Writhings trilogy afterwards.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Gabriel N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/26/2018 10:42:42

Easy to follow, adequately proofread, balanced for its tier, and fits in its allocated time. This runs easy with few ways to trip up a DM. The Thentia setting is also interesting and not touched on in many other modules. I've run this module 5 times at cons and at my FLGS and its been a winner every time.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Bryan K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/18/2018 11:58:09

Our group consisted of a Barbarian, a Bard, a Druid, a Fighter, a Rogue, and a Warlock ranging from level 2 to 3 and it took us the full 2 hours to complete.

Some thoughts on things in the Adventure:

  • Swifthand shouldnt have his horses for sale to the PCs. Being AL, his horses should costs whatever the PHB says it should. Since he's supposed to be "snobby" with people, he should just say that "they arent for sale to you folk".
  • Since Swifthand is a wizard, just have them give the players a potion of healing. Going to the apothecary is just a nuisance for the players.
  • The combat with the spiders and the frogs was engaging.
  • The module does not set up well with the next two in the series. This adventure would have done well just by itself.


Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Alex W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/13/2018 13:19:59

A strightforward and quick module. There is little roleplay, but well-balanced combat (some of which can be skipped if the players are clever about it), but the real draw to this module is the trilogy it sets up, THENT 2 and 3 are each fascinating in their own right.

My players played this while they were still in Chult leveling up, so for flavor I just set it in Chult, which is incredibly easy since the whole opening is simply "a hole opened in the grown and some people are missing".

It is an easy-to-run module that opens up further possibilities and will make for a good last-minute run for AL.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by John T. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/20/2018 01:00:15

I like the flavor of the setting. However, the major encounters are quite similar to one another. The second installment has more variety of encounter types, and creates more satisfying "table moments" and story memories.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Paul C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/25/2018 08:06:06

The adventure is very straight forward and combat heavy. I have no problem running it, but you should be aware that you're not getting any roleplay (as the other commenters have pointed out), without doing some prep work on your own. There is a lot of space to develop an interesting roleplay scenario.

The module goes to lengths to present wonderous sights and colorful characters, but the two-hour time limit is actually observed in this module, unlike many others. You are sent fairly quickly to discover the source of the sink holes and presented with two combat challenges and one exploration opportunity.

The combat scenarios are excellent, and where this module really shines. They both involve interesting setups and can really provide a challenge to your characters if you play tactically. Against the Spider-monsters, remember to use web-sense and make good use of your choldrith. The Chitines can take a party down very quickly, so if you have a tank, he's pretty much toast. Plan for a good escape route for the Choldrith. I had some blood thirsty players track him and kill him pretty easily.

The Grung battle is excellent. Don't be affraid of boosting your elite grung's HP and the Wilding as well. My players were a bit on the higher side of the APL, and I threw in a Red Slaad at the Stone Portal to make it more difficult. In this scenario, if you want to maintain the momentum, be sure to have the prisoners cry out after fighting the Chitines/Choldrith to lure them into a fight against the grungs without a short rest.

A decent adventure with a lot of space to expand through roleplay, but you're on your own there. Also a good chance to move the party over to Chult, if you want, or to take the plunge and explore deeper in the Squamous Writings series. I would prep more roleplay to tie it together in that case, though.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by James U. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/21/2018 15:28:46

This module is quite a bit of fun to run and play. One downside is that there is not a lot of social/ roleplay opportunity. The other downside is that there is a room/area that could have tons of exploration. As a DM you have to "herd" the players torward the final encounters. I have run this 7 times and the characters have done something differently each time. Quick, challenging and fun module.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Chris P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/20/2018 10:37:46

This is a very good adventure. I think it presents the scenario very well, with moments of revelation building and building until the final encounter.

Highs:

  • Very good encounter design for the two fights, with good recommendations on how to increase the difficulty.
  • Cool story set up, with the plot unfolding well and evenly paced, and leaving plenty of room for the DM to be descriptive.
  • The underground jungle is a cool area, and there is lot of room to potentially add additional skill checks and items if you are using the content outside of AL.
  • Good enemy variety, especially in that it uses some of the humanoid races out of Volo's that have a lot of potential.
  • Lots of replayability to keep things interesting for the DM, especially surrounding the first encounter for the orb, both due to the outcome of the orb (light, dark, flickering) and when the Chitine pack decides to attack.

Lows:

  • I think there should be a better hook between the first encounter and the second encounter.
  • The DM really needs to play the casters and enemies well for the encounters to be challenging and interesting. A little bit of guidance would be helpful, as it isn't obvious what should be the Turn 1 move for the Choldrith's or Wildlings.
  • I felt like I had to railroad one of the groups to not just pursue the VAULT hint immediately, when it is supposed to be part of the sequel rather than this adventure. Some more description on exactly why it isn't feasible to do it now (other than the scouts being near death) might be something to play up when running this.
  • The encounters are very back heavy, with very little room for RP between the two of them.
  • There is a bit of a burden on the DM on knowing how to treat darkness and limited invisibility, if the orb light source dark. Some suggested DC events between the two encounters, and perhaps a difference to the second encounter based on the lighting, would be nice.


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Piero B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/03/2017 19:52:35

A really nice adventure!! The initial city of Thentia is very intriguing and full of charisma. The fights have an adequate degree of challenge (apart from the first, a little disappointing), but the second the players being "very strong" have had a good challenge, it was a fight to the death! I can't wait to do the DM for the second part, and see how the plot will develop..



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
CCCTHENT01-01 Beneath the Surface
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Aaron L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/23/2017 19:35:40

This is a great adventure series. There is a good balance of roleplay opportunities and combat. This first installment is set for 2 hours but I find that it could take a little longer.

There are numerous editing issues (mispellings, etc.) that could be addressed but they do not take away from the adventure at all.

I highly recommend this series.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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