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Adventure Locale #3: Through the Cotillion of Hours (DCC) PDF

***** (based on 2 ratings)

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Sooner or later, characters are going to want to quest to achieve some specific end—to raise a fallen comrade, to regain lost ability points, to discover a new spell, to find some new magic item…the possibilities are nearly endless. This scenario can occur at any time during the course of overland travel, and gives characters the opportunity to meet some of these goals.

In this adventure, sleeping characters are invited to the Cotillion of Somnos, the Dreaming God. If they can make their way past the entertainments at the Masked Ball, they can petition the Dreaming God to fulfill some request on their behalf.

"Through the Cotillion of Hours" is a Dungeon Crawl Classics Role Playing Game adventure designed for any number of characters of any level.

All products in the Adventure Locale line present one or more dungeons that can be quickly picked up and used for a session of the Dungeon Crawl Classics Role Playing Game.

This product is based on the Dungeon Crawl Classics Role Playing Game, published by Goodman Games. This product is published under license. Dungeon Crawl Classics and DCC RPG are trademarks of Good­man Games. All rights reserved. For additional infor­mation, visit www.goodman-games.com or contact info@goodman-games.com.

Rules Set: DCC RPG
Writer: Daniel J. Bishop
Page Count: 15 pages
Artwork: Scott Ackerman
Cartography: Kristian Richards

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Product Reviews (2)

Average product rating:

***** (based on 2 ratings)

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One of the very best sidetreks I've read in ANY system

*****

This pdf is 20 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, leaving us with 17 pages of content, so let's check this out!

This being a locale/adventure-sourcebook, the following contains SPOILERS. Potential players may wish to jump to the conclusion.

Still here? All right! This pdf can be considered a sidequest that can be inserted into your DCC-campaign as soon as the players have a significant quest on their hands - they are invited to the Cotilion of Somnos, the dreaming god and petition the god to fulfill their request.

Rather interestingly, the characters may encounter dream analogues of themselves, warped by dreamstuff and wearing masks - for example a cat-mask means that the respective character's otherwise identical analogue is of the opposite gender and strangely alluring to the character, while harlequin masks mean that the respective character's alignment is reversed. Now while that is unusual, more unusual is that splitting the party actually makes sense and that the module is supposed to be interspersed throughout multiple dreams, essentially constituting a dream-adventure in addition to regular explorations. Beyond this, time is also highly malleable, resulting is spells gaining instantaneous durations or having a spell last until the respective caster leaves the room, resulting in phenomena of fireballs hanging mid-air and similar appropriately weird modifications. Death in dreams may send you into a permanent coma and spellburn and patron favors extend from dreams to the real world.

The location of Somnos' Cotilion is iconic to say the least, allowing the characters to dance with their nightmares, navigate an endless hallway, engage in intimate liaisons, experience weird memories that may or may not belong to you. The players may also find a fountain of strange statues devoted to cats (including a potentially deadly alien cat) and finally navigate the great ballrooms, dance with goat-footed musicians and dance the waltz of years that erodes away their personality. In order to reach Somnos, though, they will have to answer (or vanquish) the deadly dream ghouls that feats on the years and best their own pallid reflections.

Information to invoke Somnos as a patron is included in the pdf as well, as are three versions of the maps as high-res jpegs for VTT-use - with and without DM-map keys. Neat!

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches. Layout adheres to a 2-column b/w-standard and the pdf comes fully bookmarked. Artworks are nothing to write home about, but reminiscent of old-school modules and rather neat when taking the low price into account. Wow! Daniel J. Bishop has not only created a hauntingly iconic sidetrek that oozes creativity, he has done so with flair and elegance, showing a working knowledge of the DCC-rules and providing a locale that is simple excellent and awesome. Even if you don't use the DCC-rules, you will still find oh so deliciously many awesome ideas herein that a purchase is not only a good idea, but actually wholeheartedly recommended by me, especially at the very low and fair price of admission. My final verdict will be 5 stars + endzeitgeist seal of approval.

Endzeitgeist out.


An RPG Resource Review

*****

This is an adventure like no other, one that if done properly will live in your group's collective memory for years to come. So what is so unusual about it? For a start, it comes billed as being for any number of characters of any level.

The concept is quite simple. When the characters are asleep, their 'dream selves' awaken in the halls of a deity. There's a party going on, a cotillion or formal ball. But if they can find their way to the deity, Somnos the Dreaming God, they can ask a favour or boon. Simple, huh? And safe, seeing as they aren't really there...

As well as the characters, the dance is being attended by 'dream analogues' which are masked and costumed aspects of the characters themselves - perhaps the opposite gender, perhaps able to offer a word of wisdom or a prophecy about that character - and these bob in and out of existence in a random manner, dreamlike in its surreal nature.

Things - and spells - work differently too, although the characters have access to the items and knowledge that they have in the waking world. Life and death, as well: and although damage isn't real, being injured or killed in this dream world may have ramifications when (if?) the character awakens.

As well as rules for making all this wierdness happen, there is a floorplan and detailed notes of the dream world in which the Cotillion is being held. Study the descriptions carefully, they're designed to help you make this a truly odd and dreamlike experience for your players, never mind their characters! There are all manner of odd sights and strange events for them to negotiate... and the really neat thing? If you so choose, you can always use it again with the same characters later on in your campaign.

This is an original idea well-presented. Other adventures that I have read for various game systems have presented 'dream sequences' and indeed this works best as a dream dropped into an ongoing adventure or campaign, but this is a complete dream-based adventure in its own right, giving you a chance to take matters in a quite unexpected direction.





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