Crushed: the Doomed Kitty Adventures
Crushed: the Doomed Kitty Adventures Capsule Review by Michael Hopcroft on 22/10/01
Style: 4 (Classy and well done)
Substance: 3 (Average)
A funny and furry D20 book based on the webcomic. How many times can you die in battle before you really get sick of it? A lot, apparently, if you're Crushed.
Product: Crushed: the Doomed Kitty Adventures
Author: The Brothers Grinn
Company/Publisher: Rising Force Publications
Year published: 2001
Comp copy?: no
Capsule Review by Michael Hopcroft on 22/10/01
Genre tags: Fantasy Comedy Other
You're trying to approriate a piece of a dragon's hoard. Of course, you have no intention of killing the dragon -- just getting some loot and getting away with it. So you try to sneak past him while he sleeps and come to a few moments later back at the Temple of Infinite Lives, sans clothing, equipment and most of your experience from the last level. How were you to know dragons snored fire? Meanwhile, back at the hoard, your blackened body lies on the ground -- maybe the dragon will make it a light snack when he wakes up.
Isn't it wonderful to be Crushed? The Brothers Grinn have adapted their webcoming D&D spoof, to appropriately enough, the D&D-compatible D20 licence. The result is one of the funnier (not to mention furrier) D20 worlds, and although it serves only to whet the appetite for more of Crushed's world it does introduce you to the concept of how to mingle wild comedy and rampaging death.
Crushed and her friends are members of the Hero Class. This is not a character class or profession, rather it is the state of being gifted to always come back right after you die. You always emerge at the Temple of Infinite Lives minus all your stuff -- clothes, weapons, equipment, loot -- all gone. So are the experience points you earned after making your last level. Crushed is an especially unlucky heroine who is always finding creative ways to die. And she's picked up a few comrades along the way; Red Stephie, a former acrobat who has gained a LOT of weight and as a result taken up magic; Knaw, a fiesty little assassin who has no qualms about killing ehr "friends" for sport; and Purity, a priestess from the temple who was sent to reduce the number of times they need to be brought back and has failed utterly at that task. These are the four characters profiled int he book, which is sized and put together like a comic.
Other highlights of the book include two short Crushed comics, a dungeon crawl that seems utterly impossible to survive (although you can certainly go back as many times as you like to try and complete the quest!) and a selection of new spells and items, including boots that make people want to ahve sex with you. (It's a long story). All are full of twisted humor and lots of furry animal characters.
Crushed and her world would make a fine convention game or spoof campaign. How well it holds up will depend on how well it is supported -- it appears most of the support for Crushed will be web-based. And for nine bucks, it's a perfect thing to just try out, kick back and have a laugh or two at the expense of your deadliest dungeonmaster.