Talk about being in the belly of the beast. Many adventures lead you to fighting against the big bad evil guy, this is the first adventure I have read where you are actually in the BBEG.
Against the Iron Giant is Goodman Game’s latest adventure in their Wicked Fantasy Factory line. Written by Luke Johnson, the adventure packs 52 pages with intrigue, creative encounters and certified butt-kicking. However, this is not a “dungeon crawl”, but a well crafted all around adventure cranked up about 8 notches.
Against the Iron Giant doe not waste too much time with its backstory, and for the DIY DM, its pretty easy to switch around, replace or delete the BBEG of the story all together. Essentially a human guy got mad at the big ole’ city, found an ancient golem, converted to its religion, rounded up some orcs and decided to attack the known world with it. The PCs are the last source of defense and race into the giant to stop its rampage.
Form the getgo, you’re thrown into an assault on the giant. The PCs lead an army against it, with the army’s sole purpose being to cause enough distraction to let you in. Instead of hamming this up into an extended scene there is a nice mechanic at the beginning that can reward or punish the PCs and sums up the action. I really like this nifty idea and would like to see something like this replace random encounters in a lot of adventures. After all, with a random encounter the results are important, not the actual random encounter.
Once you are inside you will have tons of orcs to fight and a few crafty puzzles to solve. There is even a sidequest that your PCs may or may not find. The adventure is well described and broken down very nicely. There are not any long drawn out descriptions, instead the descriptions are to the point and there are alternative descriptions for different circumstances. The Magic Items are a bit over powered but controlled by the fact that they only work in the Iron Giant. This may suck to your players, however, this is easily handled by giving them a monetary reward at the end of the adventure. Each level offers something new, even when you get to the other leg, it is a different experience. The adventure rewards players who play smart but does not punish to much those players whom try to run through hacking and slashing everything.
For the Dungeon Master
There is a ton to love about this adventure. The G13 and Sentinel monsters are well designed and different for constructs. They also look incredibly menacing. The puzzles and handouts are nice too. The maps, well, everything can not be perfect. Two maps are included, one of which looks also the other looks plane and does not properly describe the room. Thank goodness for Dundjinni.
The Iron Word
This is the best adventure I have seen from Goodman Games outside of their annual tournament adventures at Gencon. Everything clicked and the extra rules like everyone has cleave goes a long way to making the adventure about the PCs as opposed to about rules. My players are having fun in this adventure right now and so will yours.
- Overall good adventure
- The puzzles are brainteasers but not overly powerful
- The bad guys are well written
- The monsters are cool
- DIY DM's can gut many elements and still have a great adventure inside of a moving golem
- One of the two maps included is poorly constructed and needed a bit more work to make it correspond with the text.