Thursday, May 17, 2018

The Darkness Beneath Dalentown Review

The Darkness Beneath Dalentown is a Swords & Wizardry adventure for levels 8-12 by Tim and Matthew Bannock. Full disclaimer, I was given a pdf to review.

The adventure includes an intro (with background and summary), three chapters, and two appendices (one for magic items/npcs/monsters and the other discussing ancient tomes and such). The premise is pretty straight forward: the party must stop a corrupted adventurer who seeks to send an army of oozes to destroy the town.

The first chapter gives a barebones description of the titular Dalentown. While the authors mention that this could be transplanted to a city in  your campaign, it just seems like a lot of info here to just ignore. There are several hooks to get the players involved in adventure, including the classic "you're at a tavern" to being recruited by the local church or a guild. The chapter ends with a timeline of events (because bad things will happen if they don't stop the ooze demon), a few details about the sewer, and discussion of how to get into the dwarven hold (that the adventure takes place in).

The actual meat of the adventure takes place in chapters 2 and 3. Two focuses on the living quarters and great library of the hold. The third chapter focuses on the Waterworks and Crystal Mine. What I really enjoy about this adventure is while there are some nice fleshed out encounters and everything you need is there, there's also a lot of blank space on the map. You can truly make this one your own. One of my favourite parts of the adventure is the main villain's ability to see and speak through the
oozes that infest the adventure site. This can create some unique roleplaying and tactical options. 

There are definitely some interesting magic items and monsters in the appendices. Again, most of these are pretty slimy. I also love the inclusion of ancient tomes and secrets. I could see this brief section being put to good use in other adventures. 

If you don't like oozes, puddings, and slimes you need to steer clear of this one. Then again if you don't like those things and  you still decided to purchase an adventure with an ooze on the cover, that's all on you. Jubilex's pseudopods have definitely blessed this one. I think this is a fun OSR adventure and could easily be adapted to other sword and elf games. 


  1. I am glad you enjoyed it, this is our first collaborative project and based on response this won't be our last.

    1. Awesome. I think Tim mentioned something about a 5e version of this. I'd definitely be interested in that as well as anything else you guys release.