Dungeon Dressing: Archways
By Thilo Graf
This installment of the Dungeon Dressing-line from Raging Swan Press is 13 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC/foreword, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 6 pages of content, so let’s check this out!
In tradition with RSP’s Dungeon Dressing-line, we kick off with a selection of convenient crunchy bits including HP, break DCs, hardness etc. for the varying materials out of which archways can be crafted – as well as architectural styles with knowledge (engineering)-checks to identify dangerous constructions and the age etc of a respective archway. We also get 20 generic sample decorations presented on the first page.
The firs table (spanning one page), features a table with varying features from sconces to being hive to insects and blue mist. The second table provides us with a total of 100 different dressings that include value for lockets hidden and perception-check DCs to notice mold.
Beyond that, we get two complex trap at CR 5 and 9, each spanning a whole page -the traditional watery grave trap and also a rather neat, interesting cacophony maddening echoes. Both traps are neat in their complexity – being a fan of traps with multiple rounds that go beyond “successful check – disarm, failed check – damage”, the two traps are neat.
Editing and formatting are, as I’ve come to expect from RSP, impeccable. The pdf comes in two versions, one optimized for screen-use and one to be printed out. Layout adheres to RSP’s crisp, elegant and concise two-column standard and the pdf comes with extensive bookmarks. Archways are mostly cosmetic, rules-wise and this pdf provides us with ample ways of making our arches stick out. What I’ve been missing from an otherwise neat first offering by author Brian Gregory are two things – balance-DCs for balancing o the archways an DCs to sabotage them/damage for collapsing archways by material/weight. Since the pdf is otherwise a great offering, I want to make it clear that this is nitpicking on the highest level and that, were it not for the extremely high standard SP has set for such products, I wouldn’t mention it. Since they do, tough, I feel I can’t rate this the full 5 stars + seal of approval, instead clocking in at a very respectable 4 stars.
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