Sidetrek Adventure Weekly #1: Blood on the Waterfront (d20) PDF

3.30/5 (based on 3 ratings)

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When a clan of masked monks ambushes an illicit exchange in a dilapidated dockside warehouse, their onslaught hurls the heroes into a chaotic, explosion-rent fracas. Thrust into one fast-paced, deadly clash after another, they slowly piece together the truth: apocalypse threatens, and only they can stop it!

Each Sidetrek Adventure Weekly episode throws characters into an action-packed encounter designed to electrify your game. Drop any Sidetrek Adventure Weekly directly into your adventure as a stand-alone combat. Or, if you dare, link all 12 into one pulse-racing, white-knuckle sidetrek adventure series. Jump aboard Sidetrek Adventure Weekly tonight!

Written by Louis Agresta with Greg Oppedisano and artwork by Anthony Cournoyer.

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3.30/5 (based on 3 ratings)

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My Review

4/5

My Review for Blood on the Waterfront
Robert "Hendersonman" Wood

Blood on the Waterfront is the first in the series called the “Sidetrek Adventure Weekly”. Written by Louis Argesta and Greg Oppedisano. The idea for this module is to be a additional side trek for your PCs. Or you can link this adventure with the other 11 pieces to for a fully fleshed out story.

Myself I see that this would work great as a fully fleshed out adventure. The story is interesting, an evil Lord marries to get access to the family library. And after his step daughter discovers this, she will seek revenge anyway she can. Even if she has to seduce another by offering him, The Key of Troodon. The key to a vast treasure, vaster than even his debts.

If used in a grand adventure, the PCs can be tricked into helping a poor Lord who's daughter has been kidnapped, and to also retrieve a family heirloom of only sentimental value. Of course, the Key of Troodon is not just a mere heirloom and is protected by a clan of Ninja Monks.

Which in the climax of the module leads you to answer the question, who do you choose? Pirates vs. Ninja. The age old question reveals itself. And the story is definitely one I want to see play out, including what the key really does.

The module is slick in design. It comes in a nice package, including enemy tokens, player and gm maps, and well configured stat for all the characters involved. And an Adventure key at the beginning tells you at a glance how tough this module would be for your group. However after reading I did not seem to agree with the Threats and Traps rating being Extreme. There seem to only be one place that the PC would be in extreme peril.

Also the climax is written out like a story, helping a GM not to get bogged down with details. I myself like this and tend to go this route, because I like story over rules. But all the stats are there if you want to run the battle.

I really enjoyed this module and hope to see where the story


Pirates VS Ninjas!!

3/5

BotW offers a single encounter for low-level characters. It fits easily in any urban setting, but scores high marks for being useful in typical DnD game worlds as well as oriental adventures. The katana vs cutlass theme appeals to the kind of players who love combats involving cut-throat pirates or sinister ninjas.

The encounter begins with a shady exchange between a secret society and the pirates who have obtained their object of obsession. The PCs stumble on this secret meeting just before an attack by ninja monks devoted to protection of the secrets sought by the first set of villains. The encounter is complex, requiring preparation on the part of the GM.

The adventure does contain a few mistakes and questionable design choices. During preparation, you may want to check the math of the statistics blocks and correct things that should have been caught during editing. Likewise, some of the descriptions for the encounter would benefit from a careful rewrite. For example, the warehouse where the encounter takes place is a whopping fifty feet tall, but that isn't included in the text until the sixth or seventh page. The read-aloud text is not italicized most of the time, so background descriptions and 'boxed text' might be a little confusing if you haven't prepared the adventure before running. Curiously, the pirates are the most Intelligent band ever at 13 each, though they speak in phrases like "hehe...arsewipes" and "Me gold, you criss-cross bugbear turds!"

Despite its flaws, the scenario promises exciting combat and the opportunity to create more than one future nemesis for your party of fledgling adventurers. While this is not an encounter to run when you didn't have time to prepare, the promise of a low-level, 3D combat means BotW is already reserved to kick off a campaign I'm preparing to start by the end of the year. If you don't mind a little work to take full advantage of a good concept, this adventure is certainly worth the investment.

EDIT: A couple of months ago, I did in fact start my Rokugan campaign with this scenario. Eveything I was excited about translated well to the palyers: fighting on the roof and rafters, short bow snipers from cover, little exploding balls of smoke, kung fu-esque scenes where two adversaries turned on the PCs to finish them off before resuming their combat, and maybe the best part: a determined Daidoji jumping into the water below the warehouse to pursue the getaway guys, resulting in very close combat, miss chances,cover bonuses, and a chance to show off her yari-fu. The campaign received a strong introduction and is still going strong. Buy this scenario for only $3 and give yourself an hour to tinker it: pure fun!






Not so impressed part 1

3/5

Closer to 2.5 stars, but Im bein generous cause its the first issue.
The meat and potatoes: Not really impressed. I can see this getting better as this was there first jaunt, but here is how it plays out. There is a quick and easy intro and a more in depth intro, use whatever one suits your party best. There is a little fight, a HUGE fight, and a "Players move on to next issue from this point". I think if you take out the combat you have about 3 minutes of gaming material.
This adventure is not all bad by any means, there are a few new and unique ideas, and I plan on picking up the next couple issues at least.
I was expecting these to be stand alone adventure which I guess it can be, but its looking like an ongoing campaign with each week being 1/12th the adventure.
Me 2 bits: Turn all the +1 weapons and masterwork weapons and armor into normal items to minimize the incredible amount of gold the players can make from this.

The good:
Olfactory descriptions a plus, really add to a player being there.
Cool battle terrain scenario.
A lot of "Add this to sound cool" sections describing the scenarios.
Good rules reference section, IE: See PHB p165 for illumination rules, PHB p76 for Hiding, ect.

The Bad:
2 misspellings.

+3 init for 15 dex, Imp Init not stated in Init section, but stated as a feat, making init +7.

Feats: StealthyB? What’s StealthyB? Power AttackB? Am I missing something?

The, Umm, Ugly?
1 Beavis/Butthead Pirate scenario
First encounter nets the party 2 potions and 8 masterwork daggers. Woot! Time to retire rich!
Other encounters, +1 weapon, MW mail, 3 pots, +1 weapon, MW weapon, 17x4 MW weapons, Bracer AC +1, Ok, now its everyone has a +1 weapon, and +1 armor and MW weapons and a finally a ring of protection +2!

See discusion section for adventure breakdown, I cant fit it all in a review.


Sovereign Court

See review for the other half of this discussion

Adventure Breakdown

Front cover/Back cover and:

10 pages of text info, 2 of them have 1/3 art prints, all of them have 1/3rd of the page dedicated to a blank "Notes" section. So close to 6 actual pages of info.

2 1/3 pages of ok art.

2 pages of cool little NPC character sheets, 4 per page. (1 page ok, 2 pages = fluff)

1 page OGL (Umm, words, prolly going to be 1 page of every adventure)

1 page little ninja tokens (Neat, but Fluff)

3 map pages, 2 well detailed maps, 1 DM Map with baddys placed, 1 Player Map without baddys, 1 legend page (Legend page = fluff)

And thar ya bee, Arrrrrrrgh!


SterlingEdge wrote:

Well, its a 12 part adventure so ya may have to pick up more than a few :p

I reviewed SAW1 at Paizo's
I wasn't impressed with it as a stand alone but it may well shape up to be a incredable 12 parter.

Soory you did not enough it enough but here are some others might disagree with you review rating: 5 out of 5 Stars Review at RPGNow.com


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
SterlingEdge wrote:


And thar ya bee, Arrrrrrrgh!

Thanks for buying the first episode of our arc and for committing to buy

future episodes we appreciate that you are giving our new project a
chance. Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our book - we
love to have feedback from our readers!

Greg Oppedisano


My Review for Blood on the Waterfront
Robert "Hendersonman" Wood

Blood on the Waterfront is the first in the series called the “Sidetrek Adventure Weekly”. Written by Louis Argesta and Greg Oppedisano. The idea for this module is to be a additional side trek for your PCs. Or you can link this adventure with the other 11 pieces to for a fully fleshed out story.

Myself I see that this would work great as a fully fleshed out adventure. The story is interesting, an evil Lord marries to get access to the family library. And after his step daughter discovers this, she will seek revenge anyway she can. Even if she has to seduce another by offering him, The Key of Troodon. The key to a vast treasure, vaster than even his debts.

If used in a grand adventure, the PCs can be tricked into helping a poor Lord who's daughter has been kidnapped, and to also retrieve a family heirloom of only sentimental value. Of course, the Key of Troodon is not just a mere heirloom and is protected by a clan of Ninja Monks.

Which in the climax of the module leads you to answer the question, who do you choose? Pirates vs. Ninja. The age old question reveals itself. And the story is definitely one I want to see play out, including what the key really does.

The module is slick in design. It comes in a nice package, including enemy tokens, player and gm maps, and well configured stat for all the characters involved. And an Adventure key at the beginning tells you at a glance how tough this module would be for your group. However after reading I did not seem to agree with the Threats and Traps rating being Extreme. There seem to only be one place that the PC would be in extreme peril.

Also the climax is written out like a story, helping a GM not to get bogged down with details. I myself like this and tend to go this route, because I like story over rules. But all the stats are there if you want to run the battle.

I really enjoyed this module and hope to see where the story leads. It ends on a cliffhanger, and a warning. But in what game have your PCs ever let ninjas tell them what to do.

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