||Quirin Adventure #3: Door to Simit Al is an epic adventure from the German d20 company GMC. It presents an epic dungeon crawl for 21st-level characters.
The book is roughly 4.3 megabytes, slightly less than that zipped. It contains a single PDF file of the product, which is thirty-six pages long. The product contains both a hyperlinked table of contents and bookmarks.
The product is mostly black and white. The colored portions consist of the front and back covers, the table of contents and credits page, the GM?s-only maps, and the blue boxed read-aloud text. A few pieces of black-and-white artwork of some of the locations and creatures of the dungeon are also given.
The product opens with a brief adventure synopsis, followed by suggestions for optimal party structure. This is important, because if the characters don?t have access to the spells and class abilities outlined, their chances of successfully completing this dungeon (or even surviving it) plummet. Following this are guidelines in scaling the adventure. The product is quite thorough here, giving scaling details for parties with average levels ranging from 15 to 25.
A thorough adventure background is given behind both the existence of the labyrinth, and why it recently became known. However, there is no clear reason given for why the PCs should explore it. Instead, eight possible adventure hooks are given, lures for the PCs to explore the unearthed maze.
Keyed locations (to the GM?s map of the labyrinth) make up the majority of the adventure. Every location with a creature or trap has an Encounter Level listing. Note that the majority of the threats to the PCs are magic traps, with only a few encounters being with monsters.
After the final encounters at the center of the labyrinth, the product lists the rewards the party accrues (besides treasure from the various encounters), and a list of further adventure possibilities, something that the last encounters are ripe with?
The appendices present a variety of new material. Four magic items, one major artifact, two new monsters, and three new epic spells are presented. Following that are the full stat blocks for the two major NPCs met in the labyrinth. Since each NPC can be met under conditions which could alter their stats, each has two stat blocks listed. Finally, copies of the full map, and player-handout maps with less details are given.
Quirin Adventure #3: Door to Simit Al is an adventure that feels no need to pull its punches. If the PCs aren?t fast enough and smart enough for the traps and guardians in this dungeon, they will be annihilated very quickly. Interestingly, they may be able to avoid the ?boss fight? of the dungeon entirely if they can out-think the dungeon design. While some may see this as evidence of this being an ?unbalanced? adventure, I enjoy the no-hold-barred style, since I feel that too many adventures holds the PCs? hands and reward them for just walking from room to room. Door to Simit Al is truly epic material.
LIKED: This product was innovative in its design. Being focused more on puzzles and traps than monsters is rare, particularly at the epic levels. The new items, spells, and creatures in the appendix round out the adventure quite nicely.
DISLIKED: I hesitate to mention this, but while the grammar and sentence structure were fine, the text for this product didn't flow smoothly. The fact that the English here is actually TOO perfect makes reading it feel slightly stilted, betraying that it was written by a non-native speaker. This caused no comprehension problems; it just made reading it a slightly stumbling experience.
Some GMs may have a problem with the main map for this encounter. While each keyed location has a magnified image showing it on a five-foot scale, the main map has its squares on a thirt-foot scale (each square is thirty square feet). Since, as a labyrinth (with almost no doors), the GM will need to draw virtually all of it, this may lead to some headaches.
Finally, the product didn't include a graphics-free printer-friendly version.
QUALITY: Very Good
VALUE: Very Satisfied
[4 of 5 Stars!]