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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge €4,68
Average Rating:3.4 / 5
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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge
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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Brad W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/27/2024 13:14:35

The framework of the adventure is great! Let's go in, mop the floor with some evil elemental cultists, and have a gnome npc tag along (with possibly his own agenda). Loved the idea of the river encounter as well. Outside of that, the other encounters either felt like they didn't really add to the value of the adventure (ogre guards, cultist + air elemental) or were insanely easy and took more time to set up than actually play out (end fight). After reading the comments from the writer to a previous review, I understand his motivations for doing it, but at least for my table it leaves my players and myself extremely unsatisfied. This would be a great Tier 2 adventure, but to not have any Tier 3-worthy foes makes no sense. I had to seriously beef up each of the fights as well. Apologies in advance if this review sounded harsh, and I definitely would want the writer to continue creating adventures, but please make sure they have the appropriately difficult monsters/enemies if it is a higher Tiered adventure. Thanks.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Aaron N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/05/2019 14:06:31

A very challenging Tier 3 to run. Lots of monsters to keep track of, which makes for long turns. Not a bad storyline, but not a lot of role play opportunity for players. If the party has played a lot of dragon/elemental cult adventures, then you have all kinds of tie-ins to engage the party. Some interesting creatures to throw at the party, but I felt it was a little weak on balance.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Creator Reply:
Thanks for purchasing the product and for taking the time to review it!
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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Allen S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/20/2018 06:24:37

This module tickled 10 year old me's fancy. The story, while a bit goofy was fun and the players bought into it. That said, the combats in the module were ridiculously easy and I had to use DM empowerment to beef them up by a lot. The final battle felt more like a tier 2 encounter as written. There is some fun stuff in the final encounter that sent my players into panic mode and made for some hilarious choices they had to make.

This module does a great job referencing older modules and books which helps it to become a more flavorful experience for some players. The one thing it lacked was reasoning, why are these cults all of a sudden working together? While the "enemy of my enemy" thing is fun to do, it falls a bit short without significant reasoning in the mod.

If you are sick of trilogies and are looking for a tier 3 one shot, this module could be a great follow up to both season 1 and 2 content. It can be a fun experience for your players, just be prepared to make a few tweaks to make the encounters more of a threat and to add a little to the story.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Creator Reply:
Thanks for taking the time to post a review; I'm glad you enjoyed the adventure!
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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Jasmine L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/22/2018 03:29:25

SPOILERS

I actually value balance pretty highly, and with this one...let's just say it wouldn't surprise me if a party of 5th level characters could mop the floor with most of these combats. The grand unified cult leader at the end is only CR 6, with half a dozen CR 1/8 minions and a single CR 5 elemental. This is a joke and it's honestly just sloppy. Even if you always run at Very Strong, the combats are basically unplayable as written.

The story and pacing are just okay and don't really make up for it. It's still a fairly linear dungeon crawl, even if there's an NPC with an interesting backstory who joins your party. It does have some "living dungeon" elements that spruce it up a bit, so it could be worse. The concept is fine, but the execution is...not so good.

EDIT: Thanks for the author response! Given the intent, here's some more targeted feedback: 1) It's not teeechnically the grand leader, but it's still the leader of the cell, and from a narrative perspective, it is the position that you expect to be filled with an end boss, so a CR 6 dork is something of an anticlimax. I would have gone with an archmage instead. (When I run this adventure now, I usually go with two archmages—that always gets 'em sweating.) 2) While there are interaction sections at the beginning, they don't really have goals (except for "receive exposition"), obstacles (the NPCs are gonna give you your mission either way), or stakes (Boddynock might not open up to you, but that doesn't matter if you're not invested in the character, and if he doesn't open up to you, you probably won't be invested in the character, right?), so they end up playing more as cutscenes with dialogue trees. The flumphs and myconids pull it off better (but they are part of the dungeon crawl). 3a) Encounters with multiple routes to victory are awesome and I'm a big fan. The adventure hints a little at using the cultist robes as disguises, for example, which is great. But in a pre-published adventure, you've also gotta cut the DM a little slack and give some guidance on what to do if the players try other solutions. For example, the ogre den has some ogres that are employed as guards by the cult. If the players disguise themselves as cult members, what do the ogres do? Wave them past? Ask their names? Ask for a password? All the cultists here are human—do nonhumans have disadvantage on Deception checks? I'm a pretty experienced DM, so I can come up with answers for all these, just like I can rebalance the encounters, but ideally I shouldn't have to scramble. I'd name DDEX2-2 and DDAL5-4 as examples of adventures that did this really well. 3b) Hordes of enemies can make for a good encounter, but it wasn't well-executed here. A good horde fight is almost always gonna require multiple waves of enemies, because if you toss one fireball and that's it, encounter over, then that's not so much a horde as a minor speed bump. You also want enemies that can pose a credible threat in great numbers, because otherwise you're just mowing the lawn, y'know? Where's the thrill? (DDAL7-10 recognizes this and basically says "Yeah, there are infinite manes here, but they can't do jack against you, so let's handwave 'em and save you the trouble.") Cultists have a single melee attack at +3 to hit, which means they not only need to get right next to the PCs, they also need to baaasically score a crit to get through a typical melee AC at this level, and then they deal an average of 8 damage—to the frontliner, who is probably the beefiest person in the group and won't even feel it. For this sort of thing, I'd be more inclined to go with several waves of low-CR elementals, since they play into the elemental cult theme. Magmins are good—they're fragile enough to mow down en masse, but their death burst makes them effective at chipping down your HP while still allowing for meaningful counterplay if you use smart tactics. Mephits could work well too. Additionally, you can't just have the whole adventure be low-level mooks—you need to balance it with more level-appropriate foes too!

The XP budgets from the DMG don't reeeally produce balanced encounters (especially at high levels), as seen in, well, this adventure, I guess. For contrast, if you look at the more detailed encounter-building guidelines in Xanathar's Guide to Everything, you'll find that for a party of five 13th level characters, a challenging-but-winnable fight would be more like two mages, four cult fanatics, twelve thugs, and twelve cultists.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
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Creator Reply:
WARNING: SPOILERS! Hi Jasmine, A few quick notes/clarifications: 1) "The grand unified cult leader" doesn't actually appear in this adventure. It should be clear from the text of the adventure that this is an isolated cell. Part of the "final rewards" is actually an item intended as a gift for a higher-ranking member not appearing in this adventure. 2) The dungeon crawl is really just the second part of the adventure. There are role-play encounters and a couple combats before the party enters the "dungeon" part. 3) As you mentioned, some of the combats are fairly easy for a tier 3 party, and that was by design for a couple reasons: a) Some of the encounters were not intended to be combats at all, but opportunities for some roleplaying and possible throwbacks to story award from other adventures. b) I wanted the "large group" combat (excuse me for being a little cryptic, as I try to avoid spoilers for those who haven't read/played it yet) to be something fairly easy for a tier 3 party. Although the XP is budgeted appropriately for a tier 3 encounter per the DMG, the large number number of creatures results in a high XP multiplier for sizing even though many of the creatures involved may individually be low-powered. I wanted to give the feel of highly-powerful heroes sweeping through a large number of minions, ala Conan or a lot of the old fantasy books where the powerful heroes sweep through a hoard of opponents. Anyway, I'm really sorry you didn't enjoy the adventure, but thanks for taking the time to write a review and provide feedback. Happy gaming! -Scott
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CCC-QCC2017 Delusions of Grandeur, Dreams of Revenge
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Anthony V. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/17/2017 07:02:04

played this at QCC then had to buy the module. The writing is great, story is fun some good twists. I LOVE the story award, even if we didn't earn in.

The major problem was the difficulty. Much of the encounters were too easy for t3, almost every encounter should have been scaled up or used smarter monsters. Given we are a group of dedicated players but it needed more umph to feel like we were needed, as it was I felt like it would have been more exciting for high level t2.

That said it was a really fun adventure and leads to good roleplaying and fun, leaps and bounds above most CCC which usually leaves me underwhelmed. GET IT! Just throw in a volo monster or 3 to mix it up!

also seriously the story award makes Season 2 magic items hip again :-)



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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