A look at Devil's Rest, a small adventure side trek available on the Dungeon Masters Guild.
- Solid and complete package
- Good source of inspiration for a mini-quest
- Though references material specific to Hand of the Wychlaran, it can easily be converted
- Map included for the combat encounter
Could Go Either Way
- Only 4 pages in length (on one it's hand short, on another that makes it a quick read and easy to run)
- A similar encounter can be thought up by a Dungeon Master without too much difficulty (it's more of a time saver than something truly innovative)
There are a lot of very nice things about pre-written encounters/adventures. They tend to be playtested. They are a great source of inspiration (I enjoy seeing what other Dungeon Masters have done). They also just might have something that can be “reused”. Devil's Rest is one that I came across recently and felt was worth mentioning. It's short and simple but overall a nice package.
The adventure itself is quite simple and straight forward. However, it presents an interesting encounter that has multiple ways of being solved (including inaction). It can be used in place of a random encounter. It can also be used as a hint of things to come. Just because something is simple doesn't mean it can't be fun (it really can be, especially compared to a typical random encounter), and the fact that everything is included in this ready to go package is greatly appreciated. The idea of forcing players to try to keep something evil locked up is easy to come up with. However, having all of the details and specifics ready to go makes it far easier for new Dungeon Masters and less time consuming for experienced ones (we can modify it as we see fit and benefit from the time saved).
The actual sealing part takes the form of a Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition like skill challenge. This means that a fluke won't doom the party. The way it's presented and used here is fine, and people who missed Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition might see something they can use. I'll be talking about skill challenges a bit more in a later post.
It isn't the most innovative or unique encounter you'll ever read and with a bit of time you can come up with something similar. However, it's a nice overall package and while not being unique, it's the kind of encounter that comes up fairly often. A great deal of how much you like this one will come from your appreciation for the package and not expecting something you've never seen before. It's also not very long but can be a good starting point for something more. If you are new to being a Dungeon Master, it will be a good thing to see at the very least.
MAP. It's sized for miniatures too. It's finally happened. All this time complaining has led to someone listening. Alright, there's no way that's the reason. However, if everyone included maps like this with their encounters and adventures, the world would be a better place. Thank you so much. A smaller map detailing the locations of enemies in a D&D 4th edition style is also included as well as a drawing of the baddie. For something free, this is really nice. The map itself is generally well done and I could see myself reusing it. It probably won't be as exciting for people who already have a fair amount of wilderness tiles and maps.
I would grab this thing for the map alone. It's a rather short file and I'm sure you capable Dungeon Masters out there can think of something similar. However, new and old Dungeon Masters looking for an encounter can add this encounter to their game quite easily. The encounter is a complete package as well, requiring only a little bit of converting to fit into the desired setting (probably a few minutes at most). Even though I'm not new to this kind of thing, I appreciate when the details of an encounter are filled out like this. That way I can keep it to spring later. It includes everything needed so even if I forget, it's all here. It's also a good way to check out what the author is like before buying one of their full adventures.