08

Basic Game Adventures B11-12
Harvest of Chaos

(1989)

King's Festival

by Carl Sargent

 

 

 

 

Editing:

Jim Lowder

 

 

 

Cover Artist:

Clyde Caldwell

 

 

 

Interior Artist:

Valerie Valusek

 

 

 

Cartographer:

Diesel

 

 

 

Typographer:

Gaye O'Keefe

 

 

 

Keyliner:

Stephanie Tabat

 

 

Queen's Harvest

by Carl Sargent

 

 

 

 

Editing:

Jim Lowder

 

 

 

Cover Artists:

John and Laura Lakey

 

 

 

Interior Artist:

Karl Waller

 

 

 

Cartographer:

Diesel

 

 

 

Typographers:

Angelika Lokotz and Kathleen C. MacDonald

 

 

 

Keyliner:

Stephanie Tabat

 

 

 

 

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A series of adventures that run the gamut of low-level campaigning. Harvest of Chaos can be used as a stand alone campaign, introducing new players to AD&D, or these modules can be used to lay the foundation for a long-lasting campaign. Memorable villains and well-placed treasures make for a fast-paced, exciting time!

Realm Rating: 4.5/5

 

 

Dawn and Foy, Around the Realm:

Game08 by Ray Dyer

B11-12, Harvest of Chaos

 

This game is much longer than the others. It includes both B11 - Kings Festival and B12 - Queens Harvest. It starts out innocently enough with a mission to rescue the town's priest from a marauding band of Orcs but leads on to much more interesting things.

The story is very good and includes 4 distinct sections or quests. It is all handled in standard dungeons, no overlands, just like all of the Realm games we've played so far. While I loved the overall story and feel of the game it had some serious bugs that required some programming on my part.

Things I liked:

* The frame & font set. By far the best I've seen in the Realms. It looked like a recolored Savage Frontier frame.

* The intrigue, I caught myself not trusting several individuals it turned out I could trust, and trusted those I shouldn't have.

* Lots of treasure, including magic, and lots of EP's.

* Some of the traps were cool

* The land outside the Queen's castle and its "special" inhabitant.

* The Queen's castle gate was a very good fight, I was sweating bullets at the end but I managed to do all of it in a single series of fights. But what was even better was that it started giving you a chance to flee after the second battle, which my wife took advantage of to rest and recover between bouts. When you returned to the castle it took up where you left off, mostly... :-)

 

* Like in Raven's Ruin, many of the treasures were handled as Inventory Items which could be cashed in at the town shop. Since they don't add to your encumbrance, I held onto them until the end so I could carry more coin!

Things I disliked:

* Hangs. We had continuous problems with hangs in this game. Some of them just happened at odd moments and we just had to reboot and restart until we finally managed to get past it. One of them was very "hard", if you let the Orc chieftain have a combat turn the game would freeze. Pelt him with magic missiles and arrows and make sure he dies before he gets a chance to move!

* Bugs. There were several bugs but the most serious one was in the 3rd portion of the game. I didn't encounter it, I suppose I did everything in the "right" order, but my wife became stuck in the dungeon. She had all the items she was supposed to get but whenever she went to leave, it wouldn't let her.

I finally had to hack the dungeon so she could leave. The others were fairly minor, like traps that went off after your thief supposedly disarmed it.

* Lots of text was not marked as "Once Only". Not as irritating as in Game07 (Assault on Raven's Ruin) since you don't stay in the same dungeon for an extended period of time, but still not good. The worst was the Congratulations text at the end of the module. It is imbedded on the final overland (where all the games put you at the end) and it was long and tedious if you accidentally stumble over it more than once.

* Too much treasure (I know this was a like too!). At the end all of my characters were down to move 3 and I still left as much behind as I carried out. More treasure in the way of jewels and gems is better than thousands of gold I can't haul out. Especially since there are no Vault events in the Realms (which I understand).

* At the end I got a chance to buy goods at a very complete shop. Unfortunately I couldn't sell my Inventory treasure at that same shop. I ended up hacking the overland so we could go buy stuff after the game was over.

* Gender specific pronouns. All the Realms games do this but this one had a couple of awkward moments. Dawn always plays all-female parties. Imagine her distaste when a couple of "beautiful" female theives show up and she's asked to select her most charismatic male character. Oh well.

We had a love/hate relationship with this module. I loved the story and challenge, but hated the bugs and hangs. This is the only Realms game I've had to hack so far, I hope it is my last. For our next game we decided to tackle Game03 - Palace of the Silver Princess.

Foy


 


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Game08.zip Harvest of Chaos Ray & Maureen Dyer

This was a fun adventure. The designers combined to modules into one combined adventure. There were a couple of bugs, both pretty important. In the mansion basement, the module did not recognize the 2nd item we needed, so it would not let me leave. I had to go in and "fix" this so I could continue. The second bug came when it was suggested I go back to Stallingford and rest and train. When I tried to leave to continue the adventure it sent me back to the orc caves. Again I went into the design and "fixed" the problem. I really enjoyed the plot matter and the text as usual is interesting and draws you into the story.

Plot Matter: 9 Artwork: 9 Hacks: 9 Text: 9

Events: 8 Originality: 9 Errors: 1 Difficulty: 5

Total Rating: 81% Mycroft: 8

-Susan McKinney

 

So here we are again, after a successful journey through a Realm adventure. Since I have the original P&P adventures (and even did a conversion of B11, King's Harvest, for an April Fool's contest), I can compare them to the originals and see what there is to see. And there's a lot. I've always enjoyed these adventures; they are perfect learning tools for beginning players and DMs, with lots of tips, hints, and some good dungeons to explore. Not to mention fabulous treasures and terrifying creatures.

As usual, Ray did a fantastic conversion, although it lacks the humour that my conversion did (which was intentional and not at all to be taken seriously anyway). There were a few new bits, like the weather (continuing the campaign idea, the party moved from Autumn in Game06, Journey to the Rock, to winter in Game08, Harvest of Chaos). Excellent decision on Ray's part. The fogwarden was new; I don't recall ever seeing one of those before. But it was a logical encounter, and advanced the story. However, the text in that area repeated every time we retreated to rest.

For those who haven't played this design yet, hurry up and do so. It's a challenging adventure, with lots of action and some great story points. There actually is an underlying plot; it's not just a 'hack-n-slash' festival. Ray brings out that plot well through description, and use of artwork from the original designs. The climactic battle was challenging, and the treasure was worth it. I found myself more than once in a position where I had to discard some of the goodies I had found, because I simply didn't have room to put them all. Such is life for an adventurer. So if you go to the keep, you'll probably find a lot of gloves, belts, boots, spears, and crossbows lying around where I left them.

Technically, there were few problems, although the text-repetition problem I mentioned above definitely got a bit irritating. Still, nothing and no one is perfect, so I won't shoot Ray for this small flaw in an otherwise excellent design.

Mycroft's module rating: 9.5 out of 10

 

Glen

 


All of the preceding modules and game worlds are trademarked property of TSR Inc, which is now the property of Wizards of the Coast, Inc. I take no credit for the stories or ideas presented here, I merely converted them to a playable format for SSI's Unlimited Adventures game.