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DDAL04-04 The Marionette (5e) $3.99
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/14/2018 15:12:41

Bottom Line Up Front: A very good adventure with spooky atmosphere. A few challenges in the writing mean the DM needs to read the whole thing and make some decisions before game time.

This adventure has a lot going on, and will push your time management skills to the limit if your players are interested in any extended conversations with...well, just about anyone. When I ran it, I skipped the initial foray into the woods to find the missing villager, and we still took 4.5 hours to finish.

One continuity issue jumped out at me [SPOILER ALERT].

After Laszlo snatches the powderbox while in the dream sequence, he can then be seen shouting his defiance to Glovina in the square, and then he...just kind of vanishes. I recommend letting your players take a couple of potshots at him in the dream (they are unarmed, but that hardly matters to the spellcasters), and let that be motivation enough for him to flee. The PCs will then be occupied with the burning village.


There is also one content warning - I have a couple of players who are highly uncomfortable with violence towards children, and there’s some evidence of that in this book (though there’s only one seen of sort-of violence to a child, there’s plenty of evidence that terrible things have happened in the past). As ever, know your party’s limits, and, if you’re playing AL, maybe talk about it before you dive in.

The final encounter was one of the best I’ve had for AL in my short DMing career there, giving new players a taste of how legendary and lair actions can make an enemy a more serious threat than they might otherwise appear.

If you’re playing through a Ravenloft arc, or you’ve got players willing to burn the 20 downtime days to get out of Barovia after, this would make a great spooky break from AL’s more run-of-the-mill monster beatdowns.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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DDAL04-04 The Marionette (5e)
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