Dungeon Crawl Classics #39: The Ruins of Castle Churo DM Screen and Adventure (OGL) PDF

4.50/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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An adventure for character levels 1–3, plus two DM screens

This 8-panel DM screen, designed especially for 3.5 rules, includes all the reference panels a DM needs during his game. It is illustrated with gorgeous art from the Dungeon Crawl Classics line, and comes packaged with The Ruins of Castle Churo, a new adventure for character levels 1–3.

The heroes have to bring justice to marauding bandits who have taken refuge in castle ruins—but this castle was long ago destroyed by a magical accident whose effects still linger!

The DM screen comes in two parts. The first screen includes table reference for armor, weapons, and poisons, and bulleted rules reference for combat actions and modifiers. The second screen includes skill reference and combat terminology. The reverse of each screen features beautiful full-color art from the Dungeon Crawl Classics modules.

DM Screen Design: Todd Rooks
Adventure Writer: Alex Anderegg
DM Screen Rules Editor: John Cooper
Front Cover Artist: Leo Winstead
8-panel DM screen plus 16-page adventure

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4.50/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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An RPG Resource Review


This is a first-level adventure, but as usual the challenges facing the party are not trivial. A bunch of bandits calling themselves the Broken Knives has been purloining treasures from local temples and have made their base in a ruined castle. A party cleric may serve one of the burgled temples, or the party may just see notices advertising for adventurers to raid the bandits in the local town (Grozny if you're using the default world of Aereth).

The information for the DM includes an encounter list, scaling information, location notes and extensive background mainly centred on Castle Churo, explaining why it is in such a battered state and what effects result from that... it used to belong to a magician called Churo, whose experiments with high-powered magic were ultimately his downfall. This was some thirty years ago. Meanwhile, in town there are five religions competing for power and worshippers, and these recently started suffering losses of valuable relics from their temples...

Rather unusually for this series, the adventure itself begins with the party being brought before the town's religious council, which has representatives of all five religions - three of which have been robbed. The thefts were carried out by subterranean tunnels into their storerooms and although the tunnels collapsed behind the thieves, they appear to lead back to Castle Churo. After they are briefed on the missing items, they might want to gather rumours before heading on up there. And that's where the real fun starts...

Room descriptions paint the picture well, and there's a lot going on wherever the party should venture. This is all backed up with details of monsters/NPCs, their stats and likely reactions to party intrusions, and notes of what's available to loot if the party is victorious. A few handouts are included to help players understand what their characters can see. There are some innovative traps and effects for the party to navigate... and this is before they venture into the catacombs beneath the castle ruins. The adventure is wound up neatly with several alternative outcomes, with the possibility of further action if the fellow behind the thefts evades them, or goes undetected.

It's a coherent adventure, with every encounter having a good reason to be where it is. A neat way for a new adventuring party to start building their reputations.

Very good 3.5 DM Screen


Since getting my hands on this, we've been using Goodman Games DM Screen on each and every session of 3.5 and PFRPG Beta/PFRPG for several years now. It is that good.

The adventure is not bad, either, but that is more like a sidetrack of this wonderful product.

Great Screen, Basic Adventure!


I would have to agree with the other review. This DM screen is the best one I've seen for the 3.5 rules set. It is bigger than most, so be aware that you may have to lean over at times, but the charts are full of useful information the DM needs at his fingertips. It's helped to make my games run a lot easier. The adventure, "The Ruins of Castle Churo" is okay. It's a very basic adventure, geared towards a first level group of PC's and a novice DM. Experienced players will probably find it a bit too simple. But, in keeping with the "Old School Feel" of the DCC product line, the adventure is just what you'd expect if you opened your basic D&D screen all those years ago. A great product and a great line of games. I highly recommend it. The only complaint? I'd have liked the cover information to have been on a seperate sheet of paper that you could discard when you were ready to use it. I like the old style artwork, (it's taken from the various DCC modules) but could have done without the game info starring at the players. A very small complaint to an otherwise awesome product!

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