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The Monolith from beyond Space and Time
Average Rating:3.9 / 5
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The Monolith from beyond Space and Time
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The Monolith from beyond Space and Time
Publisher: Lamentations of the Flame Princess
by Troy V. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/29/2015 07:50:31

In the typical LotFP fashion, the "winning" scenario is damn near impossible, the adventure contains numerous devices which screw player characters royally, and is grimdark to a fault, replacing wit and imagination with tragedy and cruel jokes. Your characters might as well just stay in the tavern, tea house, inn, or drug den. Better yet, tell your referee to lighten up or replace your referee, and stop pulling these tasteless, depressing pranks on you and the rest of the players.

[1 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
I\'d like to point out that this reviewer has placed this exact review, verbatim, on eight different products written by six different people, including on one product not released by LotFP. You can decide for yourself whether this harms the credibility of the reviewer.
The Monolith from beyond Space and Time
Publisher: Lamentations of the Flame Princess
by Daniel J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/30/2015 08:02:22

This booklet contains many good ideas, but also lots of bad ones, at least in my view.

A few shining points:

  • The Owl's Service - it's an ingenious portable and rather horroristic episode. "Certain Doom" included, but one is free to add a sliver of hope.
  • The maze inside the Monolith - Some great ideas here. Also some meh ones (the mechanics of brains and guardians feels extremely overcomplicated), but I generally like it.
  • Carter's head - Less hilarious than Vecna's head, but pretty cool still.

However, in its entirety, it's not a very good adventure, and also I think it fell short of its goal as an homage to Lovecraft. While the "being doomed from the get-go" part is definitely there, the way in which the doom is happening is rather blunt, and to be honest, quite silly. The sideshow owls are so much better in concept than anything about the monolith per se. :) I also have serious problems with most random effects being purely detrimental.

Lovecraft's cosmic horror was rarely about "everything is out to get you". Yes, it did happen, but those were his more inferior writings. Generally, what I see as the staple of Lovecraft is the duality of having the temptation of power, and revulsion at the cost of that power - one's humanity - at the same time. Nota bene, becoming an immortal fish person is not immediately deleterious, except for the knowledge that one is becoming a fish person.

That is mainly what I feel is lacking here.

[3 of 5 Stars!]
The Monolith from beyond Space and Time
Publisher: Lamentations of the Flame Princess
by Martin K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/04/2014 14:00:31

While there are a couple of ideas that could potentially be worked into something good, the content of this module is just a bunch of random junk with no sense or meaning. And it clearly isn't concerned with even pretending that there would be any. It is not meant to make sense and you're supposed to just shrug as the players are staring at you blankly, having no idea what's going on. Mystery and revulsion are great things in an RPG, but to be effective the players need to be under the assumption that there is something going on that is following a pattern they do not understand. But in this case it is painfully obvious that there isn't anything that could be understand, because there isn't any pattern at all. At the very best the GM could try to keep a cold face and ask the players to trust him, that there is something going on, but it's so weird that they most likely will get only a very fragmented and distorted image. Which would be okay, but in this case that would be a blatant lie. And that's just bad game design. It's interesting to read, but for using it in a game, it's just plain useless. It's decent literature, but a very poor game suplement.

[1 of 5 Stars!]
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