Review: The Missing Harvesters

The second Kith’takharos adventure. (I’m using the Savage Worlds versions, by the way.)

This is a 50 page PDF, by Dave Przybyla and Michael Galligan. The Savage Worlds version is aimed at 4-6 Novice or Seasoned PCs.

CONTENT

The book begins, like Well-Met in Kith’takharos, with a colour map of the region, an explanation of how and why the authors design adventures, and an outline of the scenario, which has 10 events or encounters. There are three different adventure hooks to draw in the players, depending on whether they played through the earlier scenario or are fresh into the village.

As in the first scenario, someone has gone missing in the swamp, and the PCs are hired to find them, and what happened to them, discreetly. This leads them into conflict with swamp wildlife and outlaws, and into a small dungeon. The puzzles and traps in the scenario are unforgiving, so if the players don’t pay attention during their briefing and act cleverly in the dungeon, they will find things difficult, although with patience and magical healing they should prevail.

The adventure is linear, and assumes that the players and GM follow the story in the sequence presented. That’s fine with me, but Your Mileage May Vary, so be aware.

FORMAT

Extensive use of colour throughout, which is not kind to my printer I fear. Full colour maps and diagrams; cream page background; green boxes for descriptions and blue ones for game mechanics; orange boxes for sidebars; pictures to use as player handouts. Again, I don’t think I really need a full-page, full-colour image of a small boat.

Statistics for opponents are presented in a logical place within each encounter, and all the ones you need for a given combat are on a single page, or facing pages, so there’s very little page-flipping. This is a Good Thing and other publishers could learn from it.

SUGGESTED IMPROVEMENTS

There are a number of references to things (e.g. plants) explained on the White Haired Man website. I’d prefer to have these collated into a PDF file for easy download, and to be fair I understand the authors are working on this.

I’d prefer it if the PDF file used layers so that I don’t have to print the coloured background on every page.

It would be more logical for me if the dungeon layout and writeup were after the point in their trip where the PCs find it, rather than some pages before.

CONCLUSIONS

Together with Well-Met in Kith’takharos, this introduces the factions and themes the PCs will face in the campaign as it continues; the Transit Guild, the Order of the Jade Leaf, reptile men, and outlaws.

I was a bit disappointed that the mission was the same as the previous adventure, but once they’re into it, the players will find themselves taken off down a different track involving lost civilisations and poachers, so that’s a minor niggle.

My favourite part was the dungeon and its puzzles. I expect to have fun with that.

Rating: 3 out of 5. Does the job, but not as entertaining for me as some of the other episodes. More of those later…

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