A dungeon and wilderness exploration adventure for 8th-level characters
A hundred miles off the Chelish coast lies the remote island of Deepmar, where the House of Thrune sends prisoners to work in crystal mines, wresting valuable spell components from the depths of the earth. A month ago, all contact with the penal colony ceased, and now someone must discover what mysterious fate has befallen the prisoners and guards of this isolated mining operation. The abandoned colony shows no signs of struggle yet something is clearly not right: Herds of animals lie mutilated in the surrounding fields. The savage beasts of the island have run amok inside the compound. And the silent, gaping mines—each named for a different layer of Hell—lead to new threats beyond anyone's imagining. As the PCs explore the island in search of the missing miners and their jailers, what they discover may unhinge their very minds. If left unchecked, the new masters of Deepmar could bring about a new era of madness for all of Cheliax—and beyond.
No Response from Deepmar is an adventure of horrifying dungeon-and-wilderness exploration for 8th-level characters, written for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and compatible with the 3.5 edition of the world’s oldest RPG. This volume also contains a gazetteer of the island of Deepmar, a detailed description of the abandoned penal colony, and a brand-new monster, all of which can be easily adapted for use in any campaign setting.
Written by Stephen S. Greer
Pathfinder Modules are 32-page, high-quality, full-color, adventures using the Open Game License to work with both the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and the standard 3.5 fantasy RPG rules set. This Pathfinder Module includes new monsters, treasure, and a fully detailed bonus location that can be used as part of the adventure or in any other game!
After reading through this module, I realized that it is a good adventure that leaves enough wiggle room for a GM to leave his, or her, individual mark.
I liked how the exploration section left it up to the GM to place encounters wherever they work best (or worst ;) ) for their groups.
The same can be said for the tunnels, with areas marked as beyond the scope of the adventure. This may be a drawback for some game masters, but I think that it's great that there's room for me to fill some areas with a personal touch.
Overall, this is a good creepy adventure that can easily be expanded upon if a GM wants to, but doesn't need anything extra to be enjoyed.
This is my first review, so please bear with me if I ramble. When I was growing up in the game, there were a lot of modules that did exactly what Deepmar does so well: Set the stage for a truly memorable gaming experience and then said, "this is your baby, make it uniquely yours". I realize that the tunnels that go off the map are not everyone's cup of tea. I realize that some people want a module to not need a lot of GM work, but this is exactly what turns my crank. I want that mythic environment that I can mold into my vision.
And what an environment. Kind of a fantasy version of Escape from New York. It feels grungy and dark and creepy. The main antagonists are uber creepy, and smart. It is the smart that matters. Little psycho death ninjas who can think... That's a scary creature.
I especially like that it is unlikely that the characters will get all the answers in the end. It doesn't feel arbitrary. It feels purposeful that there are things going on that "man shouldn't know." If Carion Hill is the Lovecraft horror module, then this is the Machen horror module.
If you are looking for a great environment for a spooky night of gaming, and are willing to put a little work into it to make it your own, get this module... Before it gets you.
Frankly, I am surprised by the critical reviews of my peers. Although they are correct in their judgement of the editing (not the best), I feel they missed the point of the adventure. Your players are not meant to truly understand what happened to the colonists, nor are they intended to kill every monster on the Island. If they can rescue more than the cook, then good on them, but from what I have found, if you have a typical PFS group, they are lucky to escape with only a single casualty. Even so, the wealth of information would provide months of weekly adventure if adapted for campaign play. The story was somewhat typical, but when dealing with the mysterious Derro (think UFO conspiracy for how the bulk of Golarion sees these creatures) a little goes a long way. Scared the crap out of my party of six (which sadly became five and a corpse after digsite Stygia).
**For its detractors, if you feel you can write a better one, then by all means please do, I would love to see more on these psychotic fiends.
**My main criticism is mostly the monster layout - a planned encounter with a clay golem AND THEN ANOTHER CLAY GOLEM IN THE MAIN DUNGEON was too much, especially when you take into account the Gug and the near-limitless mounted Derro with repeater crossbows.
**This module could very well kill any party not armed for bear and sporting a ninth-level Wizard in the wrong hands.
No Response from Deepmar is an entertaining romp that can be as short or long as your players wish it to be. It is let down by some structural issues, inconsistencies and stat block errors, but would otherwise warrant a 4 star rating. If you're willing to spend some additional time preparing this module, you're in for a fun day.
The theme of the module is freedom; you're given a task to do with no real time limit, offered a few basic options on how to proceed, and the module essentially lets you do as you wish. This is both its strongest feature and greatest weakness. The isle of Deepmar is well presented with a lot of information given; information that is not capitalized on to its fullest potential, hence the need for further preparation. There is a big feeling of 'do as you like', both from a player and a GM perspective. While this might not be everyone's cup of tea, especially in a pre-written adventure module, it does allow for a fair bit of creative tinkering, more so than what you'd find in other modules. A lot of tactics, repercussions from player actions and the general timeline involved in the module are left almost entirely up to the GM.
The main foes of the module can put your players in a pretty interesting situation; depending on your players it can either be a great source of roleplaying or a hand-waived annoyance. The combats can be decently challenging, provided some research is done prior and some on-the-fly tinkering is allowed for. The story does fixzle out without much of a conclusion; I feel more effort could have been made to foreshadow the events that took place at Deepmar and as mentioned in other reviews, more use of horrific imagery and the like could have helped flesh out the main part of the module.
In summary, if you're not afraid to get your hands dirty and make some necessary additions (as suggested by the module, in fact), then you should have a good time with No Response from Deepmar.
Erik Freund coverd most of what I disliked about the module so I'll just focus on two negative things the random encounter table and the derro ambush as well as the posotive the Gazzetta
The random encounter table just seems to be a random mismash of creatures thrown in for the heck of it (Dire apes being an example) whilst in the Gazetter they had monsters mentioned that dont show up on the table at all (Green hags and spitefull fey being an example)
The Derro ambush encounter being the other thing that stuck out you have this group of really paranoid Derro obsessed with keeping themself secret (Which the module emphasises in great detail) who a small group decide just for the heck of it to try and shoot a party member full of poisoned blow darts for a laugh.
Dont get me wrong if it had been a case of them shooting at all the party members to have the poison mess with all there minds or a lone sentry they try to pick off and such it would have worked really well instead it comes across as they attack when the entire group is up and aware putting the entire secrecy thing down the pipe which dosent really fit with the way the derro act in the rest of the module at all
As the title say the Gazetta is probably the best part (and the reason it is 3 stars instead of just 1 or 2) it has several interesting locations and possible monsters mentioned (Fact best parts of the module were when the group went of script and the Dm added in bits inspired by the Gazetta). Sadly that is not enough to make the module seem all that fun YMMV of course.