9/12/2014

Frugal GM Review: Winds of the Ice Forest

Frugal GM Review: Winds of the Ice Forest
Going through the list of recent offerings at DriveThruRPG a cover caught my eye and upon investigation I discovered that J.V. West had put out another adventure. I really liked Howler and my group finally got to run through it. I think they liked it as much as I did.

First off, I know that this is only the second adventure, but is there a mailing list or something I can get on? (I guess there is....you can "follow" a publisher on DriveThruRPG)

Of course I had to download this adventure and do a quick review. It'll be quite some time, years maybe, before my group will get to play in this, but I have the perfect spot for this.

Winds of the Ice Forest is an interesting adventure because in a couple of ways it isn't a "destination" so much as a journey. While there are great locations within the adventure itself, the locale is more of a pass-through to somewhere else, which makes it real easy to drop-in to your game world. You can shove it in a Northern clime easily or just make a few tweaks and drop it in as a winter adventure.

While it is written with Labyrinth Lord in mind, Winds is easily adapted to any other OSR or OSR-like game. I'm going to use it in my HackMaster game with little adaptive difficulty. I'll just have to tweak some of the magic items and replace some magical-type events/effects to have a more "natural" cause. It didn't take me long to figure out how to make these tweaks, so I doubt other GMs will have a hard time either.

J.V. even makes note of this on the title page, "However, given the nearly-universal language of all the old school games, you can easily run it with your game of choice if said game is fluent in old school cant."

Winds of the Ice Forest is quite light on maps, which makes perfect sense when you read it, but is loaded with a bunch of other goodies. There is a new spell, six new monsters, seven new magic items, and even a new Labyrinth Lord PC class! Now I won't use most of this in my campaign, but there is still a lot I can use and the "unused" stuff might get a little tweaking for eventual use anyway.

Frugal GM 5 Star Review: Winds of the Ice Forest
I've mentioned this before with the Howler review, but it is worth mentioning again, I love (love!) the addition of the battle sheet. Every publisher writing adventures needs to do this. The foe/monster stat blocks are in the body of the text, but having a separate sheet is a great touch.

Overall I think this is a great adventure and one well-worth the download!