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DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue $4.99
Average Rating:3.2 / 5
Ratings Reviews Total
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DDAL-ELW00 What\'s Past is Prologue
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DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Tim L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/08/2018 05:55:05

Incredible prequel to the ELW storyline. Sets up some nice hooks, establishes characters, and sets the general tone and mood of the world. Normally I find plot heavy modules to be a bit too much Monty Cargo, but this one worked.

The only real issue is that lv 0 characters are very squishy, which is fine, but any hit either drops them, or nearly drops them. I can see why this is so, and it actually works for most of the module. However, on the gnome sidequest, throwing a CR 2 bandit captain with multi-attack and parry against a group of lv 0 is borderline TPK unless the gnome goes all Deus Ex with his firebolt cantrip.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Will R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/26/2018 10:33:49

I ran this a few weeks ago for 2 players in a couple of hours, one guy was an eberron fan and one was brand new.

The adventure went well for the people and time. I ran it cold (no prep time) and it ran fairly smooth.

I like the idea of 0th level characters presented here.

I would have liked some more combat oppurtunites, with maybe an easy or medium encounter on the ship to add some extra fight (maybe in the vein of the Alien movies?).

I ran this adventure with my guys at 1st level since there was only two, and for time purposes skipped the bonus objectives, but overall it was a fun time.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Klo U. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/18/2018 12:52:39

My players really enjoyed the mystery and the pre-generated characters.

However, it required tons of DM fiat to keep the characters from being killed in combat situations. With less than 10 hit points per character and not much in the way of offensive capabilities, Episode 1 could have easily ended in a TPK. Episode 3 gets even deadlier if they are doing Bonus Objective B and then try to face off against the last antagonist. For episode 3, I ran a chase scene to escape a patrol instead of fighting them. Even that was clunky though.

One other addition I made that I think elevated the adventure slightly was tweaking the ship's dialog: indicating Whitehearth in Cyre as its intended destination, the requirement of additional repairs, and the redirection to the closest port (Sharn) until repairs have been completed. Then before the automated harpoon fires: "Threat detected", clicking/loading sounds and movement, and then "Threat eliminated. Resuming course to Whitehearth."



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by MICHAEL B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/16/2018 08:45:50

Good introduction to Eberron, but mechanicaly it was clunky. You can listen to my review here: https://metagamingmoments.podbean.com/e/metagaming-moments-xxxii-eberron-review-what-is-past-is-prologue/



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Richard P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/07/2018 13:28:24

This is a great introduction module for Eberron and Sharn. Not much opportunity to explore Sharn but I did give the characters a good introduction to the City of Towers, the three levels, and the interactions of some of the magics, which take place in Sharn. I explained some of the differences between Faerun play and Eberron most notably the aircraft of all shapes and sizes, the mechanical contraptions moving about, and some of the characters one could run into around Sharn. I did not provide a backgroud history to Sharn, not enough time to do that in a 2 -4 hour module.

For the actual play the characters and I were a little confused with the ariel assualt between the two ships specifically when they moved from one ship to the other they find that EVERYONE is dead, which was hard to explain, I mean just seconds ago you were fighting and then just the ZERO pre-gens survive, what?

I did have them encounter one patrol (bandit capt and three bandits) and every character went to 1 or 2 hp in the first round, that's after I downed the stats on the four bad guys. Luckily Xen the shipwright and Sivas the gnome intervened and helped the players escape if not they would all have died.

I enjoyed the ending, I opted for the automatic crossbow mount to intervene after the bad guy threatened the players on the ship.

Overall a good story, might need a little tweaking to give the DM a better explination on the ship to ship combat and results of the crew.

Cannot wait to run more Eberron story lines.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by John E. J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/02/2018 17:47:14

The rules for "level 0" characters are unique; you're weaker than a level 1 PC with class abilities, but not overwhelmingly so. When I ran this with a 4-person table, three PCs were able to defeat two CR 1/8 Bandits and a CR 1/4 Acolyte with a little luck.

Given the framework of the story as a prologue to the main storyline, I'm OK with it being somewhat railroad-y. The players get a bit of agency in how they deal with the initial combat, discovering how to fly the ship, and how to handle it when they get to Lower Dura. Sure, they can't leave until the ship is repaired—and my players seriously debated leaving the ship there and abandoning it—but having their names on wanted posters made for powerful motivation.

When it came to the bigger bad guys, I had Xen and Geryn help out. There is a note in the adventure that a particular Bandit Captain should be reduced to 35 hit points; I'd do that for every NPC unless you have a full table of 6 PCs and they're working really well together. I had Xen and Geryn help out as well. Even without prepared spells, Geryn's Fire Bolt is a good equalizer against big bad guys.

As an introduction to Eberron in 5th Edition, What's Past is Prologue is an interesting experiment, and one that I think worked.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Casper H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/02/2018 08:52:59

Had great fun preparing and playing this. It really felt like an interactive Hollywood production. I get the critisism, that it might have been a little .. non-interactive, and yes the level 0 pregens are really squeemish. Went one round with the Boromars and I had to break off the fight unless they would be killed all of them.

Great cinematic descriptions, screen-worthy action! Would love to see this script brought to the big screen!

From an RPG perspective, it was indeed more of a story-telling event. My players had fun, used Han Solo as a backdrop for Sebastian (intended? I think so!), and it was great fun. Unfortunately didn't get to get rid of the Professor in the described way - which I utterly love - but my players ended up getting away on the Platinum Egret and sailing off towards the .. wel .. you know :)

Definitely fun to play and an okay introduction to the Sharn setting.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Remington A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/01/2018 23:49:36

This module provides a fun story and introduction to the world of Eberron. The pregenerated characters are well fleshed out and players seem to enjoy using them. The variety of NPC's provide great opportunity for role play interaction. My players felt genuine nerves when they saw the wanted posters pop up.

The negatives come from some simple mistakes that I feel were the result of rushing this out. Personally, I'd love it if the max table size for Adventurers League was reduced to six players. But as long as the table maximum is seven, then there should be seven pregenerated characters provided for this module. C5 is also a confusing location to me. The door is completely sealed, requiring the players to solve a puzzle and dissolve the door rather than open it. Yet when they enter, the pilot has been stabbed in the back, and there's no sign of the killer. How did the killer get in? Where did the killer go?

All in all, a good adventure to start things off.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Thomas F. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/29/2018 16:44:54

This is not a bad module. But the writers could have done thier homework a little better. There are several instances where lore is just wrong. But I did enjoy running this game. My players also enjoyed the pre-mades (thou I ran ZERO combat because the pre-mades are so weak). The skyship was fun and my players enjoyed trying to repair the ship and getting it moving. Overall: Not bad, but I had hoped for more.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Jake K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/28/2018 05:22:40

It's not bad. A bit light on atmosphereic descreptions for my taste. This module could also work for a Spelljammer start point which is always a plus. I don't see any need for the pregens though. That would be more justified if each chapter had a single "spotlight" that only activates if the correct pregen is around. Like the goblin getting Divine Inspiration from the Bag O' Teeth if he were to enter a certain hold.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Nathan B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/26/2018 07:57:34

Great mod, with great rules for levle zero characters. I have players wanting to continue to play as the characts they played in this mod loving the back stories that were provided with the characters. My only complaint is that there are only 6 pregens instead of 7.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/24/2018 23:18:39

Great Adventure!

I love the idea that this established NPCs backstories in front of the players.

After reading through the adventure, I came here to compare notes. Disappointed to read the reaction. I agree that it's basically a railroad but thee are choices, and the third part is sandbox-y in the order. My players actually demanded to take out the villain by "interacting with the environment". And why not! They fled, ducked and dodged from pursuers. Generally all had a great time.

SPOILER ALERT <<<<

I am going to take issue with complaints about how the players interact with the Platinum Egret and vice versa.

The ship is written exactly correct. Check your premises. This IS a Cannith ship. Read page 17 carefully under "Bonus Objective A: What Have We Here?" This is NOT a House Lyrandar ship.

I love that Eberron metaknowledge players are going to get thrown a curve.

My compliments to the author!

Mike Daingerfield



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Kevin H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/23/2018 17:27:30

Pros and Cons: Pros:

  1. The Zero-Level Characters who will grow into campaign NPCs is brillaint.
  2. The NPCs are sufficiently well developed to make for fun role-play.
  3. There is ample opportunity to avoid combat completly if your party so desires.
  4. The puzzle on the 2nd ship is pretty good.

Cons:

  1. The Zero-Level character lack any proficieny bonus making profiency useless. (Give them a +1)
  2. The plot is rally just the module autor telling a story without any meaningful agency for the players. (I'm not sure there is a fix for this since the modue is the author trying to tell their own story, not providing a settign for the players to tell theirs)
  3. The first ship lacks description and deck plans making it obvious to the players that it is not important. (Add a description and deckplan of the first ship)
  4. Combat, if the player so choose, is deadly for characters of this level. (This might just be a flaw with Zero Level Combat)
  5. The absurdity of a couple of scholard being hired as unintential pirates who survive ship to ship combat then sneak a ship into port is a real challange to suspension of disbelief. (Consider re-shaping the party to make this a little less absurd or instead of hiring them, shanghai them)


Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Jeff H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/23/2018 09:53:28

This adventure displays an alarming lack of knowledge about Eberron. The adventure itself is passable, if lackluster, and I thought the 0 level character rules worked well, but within minutes I can't imagine any group with even a passing familiarity with the setting poking holes in the whole thing.

  • Cyre is east of Sharn Sure any DM can correct that, but it's just sloppy and presages issues with the rest of the product.
  • There is no Cyran civil war, the entire continent is in a civil war. Sure a DM can reword that, but what a terrible missed opportunity to show the effect of the war on everyday folks. Again, an experienced DM can work around it, but they shouldn't have to.
  • Its not until we get to the airships that we have catastrophic problems. We'll ignore everything written about airships for older editions, and just refer to page 6 of the Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron: "only someone with House Lyrandar’s Mark of Storms can pilot an airship." This is pretty common knowledge among players, so as soon as the player search the ship and find no one else alive, they would immediatly assume the challenge is getting off the ship. I guess you can fix this by making one of the pregens a Lyrandar half-elf, but if no one picks that caharcter the others are faced with starve to death waiting for help or jumping over the side and hoping fot the best.
  • And how does a Cannith guy have a birthright to an airship? Airships are exclusive to Lyrandar, maybe another house owns one, but a birthright?
  • Let's not forget that this adventure is set prior to the destruction of Cyre in 994. Even if we assume its set in the same years as the Mourning, the first airships were created just 4 years ago. Speaking of which, how is the next adventure set 2 years later, and yet 2 years after Thronehold?

The glaring contunity errors and plot holes render this adventure completly unplayable as written. I am shocked at how bad this was, and very concerned the rest of the series will be similarly poor.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
Hey thanks for the feedback, Jeff. As the editor of the project, I take responsibility for these lore errors, and you have my sincerest apologies. I wanted to let you know a new version of the product has been uploaded with fixes and, in the case of the airship, clarifications. I very much appreciate the feedback you and the rest of the community have given. We have taken the time to address your concerns and fix our mistakes. Once again, apologies for the errors and thank you.
DDAL-ELW00 What's Past is Prologue
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Rick J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/23/2018 00:55:11

I am not sure how this got past conceptualization, or past an editor, or past playtesting. The second paragraph in the document contains a number of basic mistakes, one of which could be solved by looking at any basic map of the setting (Cyre is by no reasonable definition "north of Sharn"). Issues like this are found throughout the document.

Conceptually, this "adventure" is a mess. It's not much of an adventure. It is a series of cutscene players are meant to play through to set up for these 0th-level characters' NPC presence in future Eberron AL adventures. There is little to get out of this experience.

I want to believe that the creative team has some respect for the setting. After all, Eberron is coming back with support in organized play. There is no evidence of respect found in this, only a veil of Eberron put over half-baked ideas.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
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