Tales of the Old Margreve (PDF or Print)
Tim & Eileen Connors
published by Open Design
Disclaimer: The copy used for this review was provided by the folks at Open Design.
There are many stark contrasts between urban, suburban, and rural lifestyles, and all are quite telling of the communities that inhabit those environs. One of the more apropos, with respect to the topic of this review, would be that of the feelings of the people toward forested areas and what can be found within them. Those within an urban environment see the forest in two different manners, those verdant places outside of their borders that have a nostalgic veneer to them and the controlled parks within their border that are places of tranquility sometimes disrupted by the disdained segments of their populaces. However, the further away from the sprawl you get the truer notion of the old woods comes to the forefront...the deep dark of the wooded fringes are best feared and respected for we have forgotten the unfettered wilds within them.
Tales of the Old Margreve is here to remind your players of this very fact, that sometimes there are more dark things within the woodlands than found within mere dungeons.
Within this adventure anthology are all the resources you would need to craft a campaign with The Old Margreve forest as the centerpiece. Not only is there an open piece of fiction, to give you the flavor of the area, but also a gazetteer. There is also a bestiary and region-specific magic section, full of encounters and more flavor. Yet the bulk of this modest tome are the eight adventures that cover the ranges of play from 1st to 10th level that easily add to the potential sandbox nature of this product.
You've Richard Pett's Hollow (1st-level), The Honey Queen by Jonathan McAnulty (2nd or 3rd level), Challenge of the Fang by Dan Voyce (4th level), The Griffon Hatchling Heist by Michael Furlanette (5th level), Gall of the Spider Crone by Tim Connors (6th level), Dan Voyce's Blood and Thorns (7th level), Grandmother's Fire from Ben McFarland (8th or 9th level), and The Lustful Dragon by Steven Robert (10th level), all barely contained within these pages.
If you're looking for an imposingly ancient woodland, a place that would make even the longest of the long-lived whisper, then Tales of the Old Margreve is for you and your table. If your players seem jaded toward stone walls and tunnels, and you'd like to surprise them with an old thought or memory, then this is the product to use. It'd be easy to use the adventures as need, work up an adventure chain, or sandbox a campaign out of this book.
In addition to the main product, there are also supplementary products that include a useful web compilation and a cool set of Ashton Sperry's paper minis.
Buy yours today, for $9.95 (PDF) or $24.95 (Print). The web compilation for $1.95 (PDF) and the Paper Minis $3.95 (PDF).