Larm is an accessory for Labyrinth Lord, easily convertible, of course, published by Brave Halfling Publishing. It is written by Moritz Mehlem, with art by Andy “Atom” Taylor. The PDF, which I bought a couple of weeks ago at RPGNow, runs 27 pages in all, and details a village of 112 inhabitants, providing several small adventures which, are designed to introduce beginning players to the basic concepts of adventuring in a D&D world and the mechanics of game-play. Two mini-dungeons, a wilderness encounter, and a couple of investigatory “city” pieces are provided. The village is well detailed, with 33 keyed locations, associated NPC’s, a rumour table, historical information and a map of the village. We get a quick overview of daily life in Larm, providing us with information on the sort of commonplace events that the villagers engage in throughout the week. There are lists of goods, with prices, for the various stores. All 112 NPC’s living in Larm are listed in their associated key entries. Many are provided with an economical, yet effective presentation of their personality, background and motivations. Some are just mentioned, as in the case of children, acolytes, etc. Larm also features three maps of the adventure sites and a Mayor’s Proclamation player’s handout. Aside from the cover piece, which is reproduced on the title page, there are 12 other illustrations, two of those being very small equipment type pieces.
There are nice little touches throughout Larm. The rumor table entries, also list, when applicable, the location key number associated with the person, place or thing being gossiped about. A table near the beginning of the book, lists all the places which appear in the key entries, along with the number of NPC’s which are associated with the location. There’s some great role-playing opportunities in Larm and player’s may find themselves involved with some more light-hearted interactions, as well as with more serious dealings.
While more experienced groups will find the two dungeons to be rather rudimentary in and of themselves, the role-playing aspects can make these worthwhile, even for seasoned players. They also serve to provide further details of life in Larm, as well as the history of the village. They’re great for introducing new players to the basics. The wilderness adventure, while simple, will require some thought and tactical planning, serving as a nice adventuring 101 lesson, which, should also be involved enough to engage more experienced players. I may be biased on that last observation, as I really enjoy this particular type of set-up and the necessities involved for success. The investigatory adventures, while pretty basic, as well, provide excellent role-playing opportunities. Of course, any of this can easily be adapted to the needs of the DM and his/her group.
If you’re introducing new players to the game, then Larm’s adventures are perfect for showing them the ropes. Some are of the over and done with type, others are wedded to deeper events and concerns, or, the history of Larm. Once the newbs get an idea of what their doing, they’ll then be ready for the DM to create more involved adventures. Larm will serve as a useful, friendly spot of civilization for the characters to call home, serve as a base for forays into more dangerous lands, nearby, allow the characters to make some friends and perhaps, some enemies, as well.
If you need a well designed village environment, Larm is a solid choice and should serve you, very well. A lot of information is provided, in an economical, well thought-out fashion. Overall, I found Larm to be Charming, very Useful and Pleasing to my DMing sensibilities. I like Larm a lot and encourage everyone to check it out.
[5 of 5 Stars!]