Originally posted at: http://diehardgamefan.com/2012/03/07/-
The Druid’s Grove is #8 in the Toys for the Sandbox series, a short supplement involving a high-ranking collective of druids, their mountain retreat, and their battle to save the land from those who would destroy it.
The 7-page booklet consists of a title page, a nice map, a page of general setting information, two pages of plot hooks, one and a half pages of characters, and a half-page consisting of a table for random rumors to be heard and another small map of the general area to the East and West of the grove.
The basic story goes like this: the Moonsong druids are a group of prestigious druids from many different druidic traditions and schools, and they congregate at a secluded spot up in the mountains. This place, known as The Grove of the Moonsong, holds a sacred shard and is considered the birthplace of the elements. Lately, they have heard of devastation being wrought on the land by orcs, and they may be facing a battle to keep them from doing any more damage. In fact, they may have hired a mercenary warlord to oversee the war effort.
There are some great plot hooks in here: one about the shard being a piece of a divine weapon, a few about the stars indicating a variety of important events, a murder, a coup, what more do you want? I should add that there is one specific angle that involves angry faeries and a magical horse… you might have trouble getting your table into that one.
What Do I Think?
This module is a little different, as it goes a bit beyond being simply a small area that can be tossed into any campaign. Instead, The Druid’s Grove hints at a larger picture, one of invading orcs and going so far as to include a map (the smaller one) that defines a rather large area. I am a little concerned that they are defining “the sandbox”, instead of just being drop-in modules for any GM (i.e. being the sandbox instead of the toys for the sandbox). If you look at the plot hooks, you’ll find plenty that has little to do with the maps or any over-arching setting and you can ignore whatever you want.
Overall, I would suggest this if you’re planning an adventure in a forest region, or anywhere where there might be a coven of elite druids. Feasibly, you could ignore a lot of the setting information included and use the plot hooks to set the druids in a city, another plane, underground, or any area where you think druids might possibly meet. Worth a buck? Sure. Print it out and put it in your campaign notes, slip it in with some other papers to be pulled out whenever you need it, or make up a scenario around it; it’s up to you.
[5 of 5 Stars!]