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Products >> Dark Druids >> DD Preface

Dark Druids - Author Special Preface

Herein you will find one of the most difficult adventures that my players ever dealt with. Several PCs of that bygone campaign in the early 70’s did not survive the module; at least one, a very powerful wizard played by my friend James Ward, not only had his life taken (his PC was later resurrected by the God of Luck) but his extensive holdings, treasure and magic were destroyed and he was utterly brought to ruin over his involvement with the antagonist druids and their demonic allies. No one successfully completed the scenario then, as they saw this accursed place as a trap that was best avoided for future adventure.

That they saw this as an incredibly difficult adventure only speaks for its design. The many players of that former campaign were very successful at various times in its history; they had climbed in level and stature and by degree had amassed fortunes of magic, money and land to rival those of petty kingdoms. This called for more difficult challenges, and thus Dark Druids was designed with that purpose in mind.

Whereas past adventurers had boldly ransacked and destroyed various areas populated by myself and my counterpart, E. Gary Gygax, the groups plumbing DD found different types of opponents, ones that did not make themselves readily known, those that were summoned according to prevailing circumstances and those that were aware of the party usually before the opposite was true in any case. The players over time found themselves assaulted from all sides and at all times, making it impossible to forge ahead. Indeed, they set off so many warnings and traps that the lucky, or wise, only survived by deciding that the time was not right for bulling their way forward. Whereas they did not proceed circumspectly and with stealth and planning, the module called for just that.

What you have in your hands is a rewritten version of that adventure. There have been many changes, least of which was a decided rethinking of the reasons surrounding these druids’ existence. Thus I have expanded upon the idea in ways which make it more concrete, or “realistic,” and in keeping with modern day adventures. That has also brought upon an expanded setting for the adventure, and although DD may be played as a stand-alone adventure, the details of its history, and the history of the dark druids themselves, is further explored within a series, “Dark Quest,” of which this is but the first offering.

For those who enjoy the challenges of high level play, forgotten gods, ancient secrets, and dark quests completed in deep regions of the earth, you need to look no further than this module and its companion parts, which I am about fleshing out in earnest. For those of a less fantastic bent who do not like dimly lit subterranean seas, primal terrors, worm-eaten grimoires, plots of gods and nether beings, mysterious civilizations and creatures not of the ground you’re used to treading upon, then this module and its brethren may not satisfy. I can only say to those that enjoy such diversity that more is yet to flow from this author’s pen concerning such matters and that fantasy is not staid and trite rehashes of Arthurian-type quests or endless sceneries filled with areas and beings we are all familiar with. I hope you enjoy this “enchanting” series as much as I enjoyed being subtly enchanted by the range of fantasy within it before and during its penning!

Robert J. Kuntz
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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