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HOUSE of the MAGUS is serving an adventure module PW

henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
Serving Deekin's Pit, an adventure module for single or multiplayer dungeon crawls.
Discord Invite:

The feel is old school D&D, but with design and style queues taken from the Old School Renaissance art-punk pen and paper RPG scene. The focus of play is on treasure hunting and dungeon crawl challenges. XP is earned for sacrificing treasure rather than killing monsters.

Custom Setting
The setting is well realized and unique with all custom classes, and races, modified spells, and equipment. But you can jump right in and start exploring rather than study up ahead of time. Each class has a viable starting package so that first-time players can make a character with a few clicks. There's no reams of rules and content to read nor a complex starting character area. You don't need to refer to a website for rules changes. You can just jump in and play while referring to the in game documentation when you need it. We've got Witches, Warriors, Elemental Mystics, fairy children, the Khyrg, and a number of slightly different takes on the classic archetypes in a fairy tale skin.

Monster Factions
Intelligent monsters are not hostile at start, and have their own factions, but PC reputation with monster factions changes based on what you do and these changes are persistent for the character. This means that it's a good idea to consider whether you antagonize and kill intelligent monsters or instead preserve a good reputation with their faction. Goblins for example currently have the best stores for spell scrolls and weapons, but they also have treasure to steal. Can you steal from them without getting caught?

Content only currently lasts to about 7th level. But new content is rolled out steadily, existing areas improved with more depth, and features added.

Post edited by henesua on


  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    edited February 11
    I've gotten some feedback from players which made it clear to me that my way of doing things is unexpected. So while I am adapting the design to better signal to players how to play this thing I made, I also thought an advice post might help too.

    The entire module is designed around the old school rule of 1 GP = 1 XP. This means that treasure is the reward, and everything else in the way of you getting the treasure is a problem to solve however you choose.

    You do not get XP for killing. So if a fight can be avoided, do it. Discretion is the better part of valor. In fact, killing an intelligent monster in front of witnesses will harm your reputation with their entire faction so avoiding kills is often worth it. Charm and sleep spells are more useful than usual because of this.

    You do get XP for treasure (sacrificing it in the Glory Box or some similar location). But unidentified items are not worth much. So Gold Pieces are particularly valuable, and the skills, Lore and Bargain, are more useful than usual. Bargain can make things cheaper in stores, and every GP you don't spend can be sacrificed for XP too.

    Secrets: The Search skill is useful. Invest in it. To do the search, however, Detect Mode should be on (emoting *searches* also works). Sometimes I give hints in blue that something is near to investigate, but you get more information when walking around with Detect Mode on.

    Proximity: Interactive things will not always reveal themselves from a distance when you toggle the tab key to look for items on the floor. I use a proximity detector for a lot of stuff, meaning that many objects are not interactive until you are near them. This means that you do have to explore. There are more than 3 exits from the "Deekin's Pit" area. Example: one of the starting dungeons is a fissure in the cliff face which you can not use unless you are near it.

    Extra: The emotes *searches* and *looks around* can provide information too, but this is just an extra for people who like to use chat commands and roleplay. Use it if you want.

    Many creatures are not hostile until you do something to piss them off. Rob them, vandalize their stuff, or kill their friends. Reputation is often persistent for intelligent creatures, and always for kills which are witnessed. This means that you'll develop your own reputation with the different factions based on how you treat their members. And what they see you doing. It also means that Charm Person and Sleep are particularly useful spells when you've been caught stealing.

    The idea is that you decide who to kill and loot and who to remain on good terms with.

    Post edited by henesua on
  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    We now have three "dungeons" accessible off of "Deekin's Pit" to explore. Each has different kinds of challenges for starting characters. Applying the right abilities with a smart plan can make many encounters and rooms in these areas trivial. Just charging in solo and hoping for the best instead of considering the best way to solve the problem or tackling it with a group is playing in hard mode. I can't pull this off very often as the developer who knows the ins and outs. Most players I have seen just lose a lot of characters playing this way.

    So some hints, since these are very difficult dungeons to tackle solo:

    There is a crypt partially hidden in Deekin's Pit. Crypts are full of treasure. Many undead lie dormant waiting to strike if you take treasure. Recommend ripping and running (and not returning) unless you can handle undead. Priests and knights do best here.

    There is a cave behind a waterfall with animals, and strange magic. Wilderness classes will do best here. Scholars, and mystics do have some spells which can enable them to get all the treasures, but its hard.

    The main dungeon is less focused, but the "mine" and the "mines" in the beginning have resources to extract, hidden treasures, and many creatures who are not hostile, but who have staked their claim to almost everything valuable in the area. A skilled character with good stealth, search, and craft can clean up in these areas if they are patient. A priest using sanctuary apparently can also be a good thief.

  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    edited March 2
    I relaxed the no respawn rule. Levels 1-3 can now respawn. Am rethinking permadeath entirely and thinking that a different old school impact on killed characters like scars and transformations rather than retirement will be the way to go. Edit: Server is no longer permadeath.

    Post edited by henesua on
  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    Underwater areas were added and polished this week along with the swimming system. One significant challenge in these areas is how long your character can hold their breath. To make the intial areas possible for low level characters, I've kept these areas smaller, and more clearly presented where the treasure might be. There are of course still secrets to find, but these are bonuses since they time limit makes searching them out very hard.

    Spells added: Air Bubble, Water Breathing. And some magic items. There are also aquatic polymorphs that can help enable you to explore underwater.

    Deeper areas will require spells or items or form changes. None are in yet. Only just started on one.

  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62

    Sneaking around fungal mats in one of the deeper caves.

  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    Attacked by one of the Zzaal's pets.

  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62

    Searching the bone pit, and climbing right back out again.

  • GrymlordeGrymlorde Member Posts: 121
    Wow! I've been looking for an Old School PW. I'll have to check it out. As someone new to PWs and your world in particular, what class do you recommend starting with? It sounds like rogue or cleric.

    Also, I recommend removing 1 point of CON permanently as the price of respawn. It's an Old School limit on how many lives a PC can have.

  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    edited June 2020
    @Grymlorde It was fun playing with you.

    Recommended starting class?
    If you are soloing, I'd go with Berserker for the extra hit points on your first run.
    If playing in a group, I recommend someone have healing spells (Priest being best for that), someone max out the skills search, and lore at level one, and after that its wide open depending on your strategy.

    Priests do best against the undead in the catacombs (knights are not bad either for that).
    Hunters, Witches, and Dreamers do best in the cave behind the waterfall due to the animals there.
    The mines reward stealth which is open to many classes (rogue, hunter, witch, mystic, monk, and dreamer. and of course the invisibility spell enables spell casters to be stealthy later)

  • GrymlordeGrymlorde Member Posts: 121
    @henesua - I enjoyed my initial foray despite dying a couple of times. There is a bit of a learning curve and I appreciate you helping me over that. Written instructions only go so far.

    Everyone Else - This PW has a lot of promise. While I only played for 2-3 hours so far, what I found is designed intelligently with lots of eye candy; a great combination.

    Now all I need to do is convince my gaming buddy to give up on Diablo II. I mean come on, it's been 19 years already!!! :p

  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    edited February 9
    A gnome and his wolf exploring the catacombs.

    The chapel

    Taking samples for "science"

    Post edited by henesua on
  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
  • henesuahenesua Member Posts: 62
    edited February 10
    Sarah, the Elemental Mystic, and Buddy, her living crystal sidekick, explore a spider hole

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