Friday, March 20, 2015

Dragon Kings Arrives

My package from the Dragon Kings Kickstarter finally arrived!  Lookie!  Lookie!
Here is the loot that arrived yesterday!  There's also a large poster, but I didn't
want to unroll it.  Also featured: my kitchen table!

I finally got print versions of the Gazetter (which has been out for awhile) and of the intro adventure (ditto).  Dragon Kings is a system-neutral setting similar to AD&D's old Dark Sun setting.  It's a combo setting/musical album composed by Timothy Brown, he of Head East fame.  I'll do a longer post after I've had time to investigate it in greater depth.  For now, here are some of my quick thoughts:

  • World book - generally good.  As a setting neutral piece, I like that I'll need to come up with a lot of the mechanics myself.  Also, if the project really gets off the ground, I can see there being a fair amount of mechanical content being created and shared around.
  • GM's Screen - I'm half and half on this.  On the one hand, it's a very nice GM screen.  On the other, all of the information is system-neutral and from the World Book.  That means I'm going to have to know all of my system mechanics really, really well.
  • Opening Adventure - Again 50/50, but leaning against.  I did not love the adventure when it was first sent out to all of us Kickstarter backers.  Also, I don't love that Brown chose to print just one system-neutral adventure and only post the system-flavored adventures online.  If I'm getting a print product, I want my mechanics in it.  On the bright side, there are mechanics for D&D, Pathfinder, and 13th Age (more on this in a hot second!)
  • Gazetteer - When I first saw this, I was actually not a fan.  Every two-page spread is keyed to a location/theme of the setting and a track from the concept album.  At first, the printing of the lyrics from the album seemed like wasting a lot of space.  But, upon reflection, the Gazetteer makes a fantastic way to introduce the setting to new players without having to either write a lot of my own material or copy tons of stuff out of the setting book.  Something else I really like:
Hoping that this isn't a copyright violation!  Haven't checked (and will remove
if it turns out that it is).  But, I'm loving that we get one table with the major
players in the campaign setting laid out so baldly.  Also, take a count: there
are 13th main factions.  This is just begging for some translation into 13th
Age--if they haven't already done that in their adventure keyed to that system.