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Tales of the Wolfguard $2.99
Publisher: Hellwinter Forge of Wonders
by Joseph [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/05/2024 17:40:20

Plenty of cool ideas, including the Ikaryas. I especially like the "Quest Plot Generator"; I want complain that it's too generic, but I will also definitely be using it for other games and settings.

I would have given this 5 stars if it weren't for two big issues, things that are completely unnecessary and could have been omitted, but the writer chose to include them.

Not only are elves explicitly called "The Barbarian Elves", but the constant use of "barbarian" and "barbaric" to describe them – and the way they are further described and depicted – makes the whole thing feel dated, with an air of xenophobia and pro-colonialization. Here's one example of many: "A party of 5 barbarian Elves is scouting [their ancestral graveyard]. These barbarians look poorly on the characters, whom they deem as strangers who pay no respect to their traditions. If the characters insist on staying around or joining them, the barbarians resort to violence to drive them off." Or how about this one: "The clans camp outside the [town] walls and start a market of pelts and other barbaric crafts."

There are mechanics for flirting with and "romancing" the primary female NPC... who is one of the "barbarians". Two of the four notable NPCs are female. One has mechanics for "romancing" her, and the other is the "seductive" madame of the "House of Pleasures" who can provide "company for the night". A third female NPC, Tamara, who is lost in the ruins can also be “romanced” by the PCs, so we are told in the text. I think that covers all the female NPCs who aren’t bird people.

The rest of my comments are easily overlooked for such a low-cost product.

The use of randomly generated dungeon maps for specific sites feels awkward and forced. The "Typical Ikaryan House" is one example of this.

The hex map needs a terrain legend; I have no idea what the different terrain symbols represent.

A ton of "INT" an "WIS" checks to find items in a room or notice things about the surrounding environment made me go back and do a perception check on the cover to make sure it didn't say 5E.

I like the board game on page 10 – though I haven’t tried – but the black and white version instructs you to start with the red piece.

[1 of 5 Stars!]
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Tales of the Wolfguard
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