EZG reviews Dungeon Dressing: Thrones
This installment of the Dungeon Dressing-series is 13 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC/foreword,1 page SRD and 1 page back cover, leaving us with 7 pages of content, so let us take a look, shall we?
Kicking off in the fine tradition of the Dungeon Dressing-series, we first get a page of rules-relevant information for the DM – whether thrones provide cover, that they grant high ground and construction materials/hp/hardness. Rather cool – there is a way to make spring-loaded thrones to get up faster. Superb for a paranoid rulers, though I would have loved to see information how such a mechanism would influence crafting DC/price.
After that, we’re off to this installment’s first table, which features 37 entries of unusual characteristics for thrones, which includes being made of glass, being made for unusual sizes, consisting of a living tree, being bolted to the floor etc. Rather cool: From having an intricately-detailed map in the back to secret compartments and valuable items that can be looted from it to thrones of books that potentially could contain spells, the thrones offer an interesting array of options and hooks to make them stand out.
The second table contains, unless I miscounted, 80dressings and features to add details to the thrones that run the gamut from being simply knocked over or termite-infested to having a dead rat nailed symbolically to it, fart-pillows on it and mysterious waxen remnants. Sabotaged or simply rickety thrones are also covered and feature nicely into a truly fine example of a well-crafted, evocative table.
The last two pages are devoted to traps and tricks associated with thrones and boy, are there some iconic ones there: From a hollow stone “panic room” to dropping cages and spiked backrests (can you say “Iron Throne” with me?), seat-mounted crossbows, hidden pits or huge skulls that bite those that dare approach the throne, we get a neat array of modifications that usually come with further customizable variants. Oh, have I mentioned the “No surrender”-Wail of the Banshee-last resort button? Now that one is spiteful, evil … and I love it!
Editing and formatting is top-notch, though the editorial’s first page gets the author’s name wrong and credits Creighton Broadhurst instead. While the regular credits get it right, it should be noted that Greg Marks is responsible for this particular installment of Dungeon Dressing. Layout adheres to RSP’s elegant 2-column b/w-standard and the pdf comes fully bookmarked and in two versions, one optimized for screen use and one to be printed out.
This installment is yet another one of those excellent, intriguing little dungeon dressing-installments you’d be sorry to miss – due to the iconic qualities associated with thrones, the small entries of the tables, the details, are especially evocative this time around and make you really want to include MUCH more throne-rooms in your modules. That being said, the lack of construction-relevant rules for the spring-loaded thrones is a minor bummer, but the only reason why I’ll refrain from giving this my seal of approval. It still remains an excellent offering and clocks in at well-deserved 5 stars.