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    Wilderness Dressing: Deserts $2.45
    Average Rating:5.0 / 5
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    Wilderness Dressing: Deserts
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    Wilderness Dressing: Deserts
    Publisher: Raging Swan Press
    by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer]
    Date Added: 04/10/2014 05:30:42

    An Endzeitgeist.com review

    This installment of the Wilderness Dressing-series is 11 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page advertisement, 1 page editorial/ToC, 1 page SRD and 1 page back cover, leaving us with 6 pages of content, so let's take a look, shall we?

    This time, we go to the windswept dunes of the desert - where circling vultures, breezes carrying the aroma of exotic spices and strange carpets in the middle of nowhere await discovery by intrepid adventurers, with and without skill-checks, while enigmatic edifices loom half-buried in the sand - in case you haven't noticed - I consider the 100-entry strong first table of the supplement well-crafted and diverse enough to fulfill my by now rather strict criteria and high standards for the line.

    In the second table, concerned with dressings, we are no less pampered by unique sights and sounds - sinkholes containing dead dust diggers, half-buried tablets of hieroglyphs, scenes of carnage that bespeak the cruelty of the gnoll instigators behind them - once again, 100 entries in which only scarcely a filler like "Black smoke on the horizon" can be found. Better yet - scorpions taking refuge in boots (including poison!) make for some nice mini-challenges herein - as far as I'm concerned, we could have more of these!

    As in the snow & ice-installment, we get 12 sample random encounters, which, while not fully statted, come with rather extensive sidenotes and utilize the young and advanced simple creature templates. That being said, these feel a tad bit more versatile -while they do offer the usual suspects with scorpions and dire hyena and a blue dragon, we also get a lich, a janni, some death worms and yes, even a jackalwere - so enough versatility for me to keep my trap shut - nice diversity in ELs from 1 to 13.

    As always, the final page is devoted to the DM-cheat-sheet, this time covering stealth and perception in the desert, rubble and sand dunes and sandstorms. As with the last installment, we get a nice piece of artwork here, though, again, I would have loved to see more environmental rules here: A summary of heat-dangers to avoid skipping books, quicksand- the like. If only because I love RSP's concise way of collecting this data and consider these pages extremely useful.

    Conclusion:

    Editing and formatting, as usual in offerings of Raging Swan Press, is superb - I did not notice any glitches. Layout adheres to RSP's 2-column b/w-standard and the pdf comes in two version, one optimized for screen-use and one for the printer. Both are fully bookmarked for your convenience.

    So this is author Brian Wiborg Mønster's first offering for Raging Swan Press -let me say without a doubt that I look forward to seeing more: The distinct flair of cinnamon seems to emit from these pages (which is interesting, considering his name points towards a Norwegian, Danish or Faroese ancestry) and speaks of an attention to detail, versatility and modularity - while here and there slightly less intriguing entries can be found, the majority of entries herein actually is fun, well-written and diverse, with all points of criticism I could muster being only me nitpicking an otherwise great supplement. My final verdict will hence clock in at 5 stars, just short of my seal of approval - looking forward to seeing more from the author!

    Endzeitgeist out.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Wilderness Dressing: Deserts
    Publisher: Raging Swan Press
    by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer]
    Date Added: 01/16/2014 10:11:03

    Sitting in a wintery Cheshire, the nearest I am to a desert is the large Bedouin cloak that's keeping me warm... but here is a collection of ideas to bring a desert to life in your game.

    First up is a table of an hundred 'minor events' - sights, sounds, even smells that can occur when the party is travelling in desert areas. Some could lead to an encounter or even a side-adventure all of their own, others serve just to enliven the monotony - for not everything that happens needs to end in a brawl, and it would be a dull trip indeed if nothing except those events designed to end in a brawl took place.

    The next table, again with an hundred entries, consists of 'Desert Dressing' and it is more concerned with interesting features. In many ways this is interchangeable with the first table, these too are minor details, sights and sounds that serve to break up a desert journey. But who can resist #35 - A djinni sits in front of a chessboard, he invites a party member to play?

    The final table gives 12 desert encounters. You could roll your trusty d12, but unless you favour the truly random and expect your party to have the wit to flee encounters too powerful for them you might prefer to pick whichever encounter is at an appropriate CR for the characters. Each one is not merely the NPCs or creatures encountered, there is a couple of sentences to set the scene for the encounter (which may or may not end up with a fight...).

    Finally there are some notes on desert terrain features include how easy (or not) it is to be stealthy and sandstorms as well as the vegetation you may find underfoot - it's not all rolling dunes, you know!

    A nice assortment of ideas for the next desert journey in your game... but it has left me dreaming of Tunisia, which is where my cloak came from!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Creator Reply:
    Thanks very much for the review, Megan. I\'m delighted you enjoyed Wilderness Dressing: Deserts!
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