Tomb of Abysthor


3.5/d20/OGL

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

Since we are accused of not contributing enough on these forums (come on people step up!), I thought I'd post this here.

I stopped by the local Half Priced Book store yesterday and scored a near mint The Tomb of Abysthor! I've had the PDF for a good long while so I'm thrilled to finally get a hardcopy.

Has anyone run throught this?


Sadly no. As much of a fan of Wizard's Amulet and Crucible of Freya I am, I never got the dollars together to buy that one.

What's your take on it? Did I miss out?

Shadow Lodge

DitheringFool wrote:

I stopped by the local Half Priced Book store yesterday and scored a near mint The Tomb of Abysthor! I've had the PDF for a good long while so I'm thrilled to finally get a hardcopy.

Has anyone run throught this?

*Shudder*

My group tried but the result was an ugly TPK. I would say we went into the tomb no less than six times but we simply didn't have the neccessary skills to survive. We found the dungeon to be very interesting but ultimately too deadly. I believe we went in at first level (might have been second) and TPK'd at 3rd level. Sadly we never even really found out what was going on with the tomb. It seemed every room presented such difficult challenges we fought for our survival for most of the time and fled the rest. Eventually our luck ran out.

What we got to see was certainly interesting however.

Dark Archive

I ran but never finished the module. I was rather new at DMing at the time and it was a secondary game night from our main campaign. I would love to go back to it one day, alas time is preciously short with all the other great products I want to try.

The best memory that I had with this module though was:

Spoiler:
The fighter had just bought brand new full plate armor, only to have the rust monster chow down on it the very next time the party returned

good stuff though!


It's one that I love reading, but have never had the chance to run unfortunately.

Frog God Games

I ran it as a prelude to the Slumbering Tsar series playtests (yeah, I know, not out yet :-( ). And it was a blast.

It is truly fantatsic in the old school 1e kind of way. Not nearly as polished as some of NG's other outings, but by far one of my favorites. For the original cover price of something like $12 for 94 full pages of adventure, it ranks up there as one of my greatest gaming purchases ever.


I have the first and second volumes of it, but not the collected version. Never really got a chance to run it, though. Definitely not for folks with a big attachment to their characters.


James Keegan wrote:
I have the first and second volumes of it, but not the collected version. Never really got a chance to run it, though. Definitely not for folks with a big attachment to their characters.

I think that you may be getting Tomb of Abysthor confused with Rappan Athuk. They are both Necromancer Games adventures (well Rappan Athuk was originally 3 adventures) but they are not directly related to one another.

Olaf the Stout


Olaf the Stout wrote:
James Keegan wrote:
I have the first and second volumes of it, but not the collected version. Never really got a chance to run it, though. Definitely not for folks with a big attachment to their characters.

I think that you may be getting Tomb of Abysthor confused with Rappan Athuk. They are both Necromancer Games adventures (well Rappan Athuk was originally 3 adventures) but they are not directly related to one another.

Olaf the Stout

Ah, you're right.

Liberty's Edge

I am currently running it as part of my Ptolus campaign.

Its good. I enjoyed most of the dungeon. There are points where characters can get into trouble fast so if your players don't know the value of discretion things could get deadly.

It had a solid backstory, some nice inter-dungeon politics, and is definitely very "old school". The players have enjoyed it so far.


I ran my group through several NG modules up to this one. For some reason they left after a few rooms, never to go back. They LOVED Wizard's Amulet, LOVED Crucible of Freya, LOVED Siege of Durgam's Folly, LIKED (doesn't really work in all caps, does it?) Hall of the Rainbow Mage, and HATED Rappan Athuk. Tomb of Abysthor, however, just didn't register. No matter how many hooks I threw at them for it, I couldn't get their characters to go back.
I really enjoyed reading it, and thought they would really get into it, but something about it really turned them off. Maybe they just got burned out with "old-school" style by then.


I ran my group through Wizard's Amulet, Crucible of Freya and Tomb of Abyssthor a few years ago, and it was a BLAST. First off, WA and Crucible are just plain fun adventures. TA has a ton of 1e flavor, between the weirdo unique monsters, weirdo unique traps and weirdo unique rewards (I can't say any more without spoilers).

I nearly had a TPK twice (which is high praise). There is some weird adjudication that has to happen with some of the spells (Unhallow, in particular, caused some confusion for me when the PCs launched repeated assaults on a section of the dungeon whose defenders had access to that spell) and a few of the monsters weren't 100% converted to 3e (some outsiders, IIRC). Also, there's an unkillable monster that could chew through stubborn parties who don't figure out they should run--so I left it out. The Unhallow BBEG was one of the most memorable fights we've ever had, very cinematic and edge of your seat.

One of my players had his paladin go for the Justicar PrC, which was also lots of fun. For him, the module was personal. WA and CF had so much extra hooks and side-quests lying around that we'd stomped around the area for ages before TA, so that it really felt like our backyard--loads of NPCs, alliances, favors, enemies, etc. There's even a ruined fort that the PCs can take over, if they're into that kind of thing.

It's the kind of adventure where one minute, you'll be at the top of your game, and the next, you've been eaten by a giant insect. Or a routine expedition to clear some orphaned rooms ends up with the entire party running for their lives, suffering from ability and level drain. It can be a meatgrinder, but it can also be tons of fun.

Recommended, with caveats. WA and CF, on the other hand, were brilliant all the way around.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber
cr0m wrote:
Recommended, with caveats. WA and CF, on the other hand, were brilliant all the way around.

Thanks for sharing! I ran my players through WA & CF - their dwarven cleric actually converted to Freya! Some of the best stuff out there for sure...

Dark Archive

Tomb of Absythor was where my iconic Paladin cut his/her teeth. It was one of the most memorable, enjoyable and incredibly awesome experiences I've had in my decades of gaming. I highly recommend it.

But be prepared, it is not for the faint of heart.

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