Wedding Bells (in Dungeon #89)
Wedding Bells (in Dungeon #89) Playtest Review by Piaw Na on 21/12/01
Style: 5 (Excellent!)
Substance: 4 (Meaty)
A good fun, one night adventure, allowing non-combat characters a chance to shine.
Product: Wedding Bells (in Dungeon #89)
Author: Jonathan Tweet
Company/Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
Line: Dungeon Magazine
Page count: 14
Year published: 2001
Comp copy?: no
Playtest Review by Piaw Na on 21/12/01
Genre tags: Fantasy
Wedding Bells is a D&D Adventure published in Dungeon Magazine #89. It is written for a group of 4 characters of 4th level, though scaling notes are provided for as few as 1 character, as many as 8 characters, and as low as 2nd and as high as 8th level characters. I played the adventure with 2 PCs (1 3rd, 1 4th), and 1 level worth of hirelings.
This is a role-playing adventure that revolves around a wedding in the town of Dockalong. It features two combat encounters, but no less than 5 or 6 role playing encounters, and gives a chance for diplomacy-oriented characters (like Bards and Rogues) to shine.
The plot is simple. The characters are ambushed on their way to town (and with the recommended scaling notes, the ambush nearly killed my party members, killing them all right there), they enter the town, where there's a tense confrontation with the sheriff and her hobgoblin bodyguard. A paladin detects evil on the party, they encounter a band of dwarves, a thief in the night, and commoners pleading for help, as well as a parent searching for her lost son.
The town is fleshed out well, with appropriate stat blocks for towns, important NPCs, and descriptions of various parts of town (which the players did not visit). The wedding itself has relatively little emphasis, and the investigation of the kidnapping doesn't become important until near the end of the adventure. What happens in between is the adventurers encounter the mundane world, and discover what they can give to their community as well as what they cannot (at least, not at their level).
The feast at the wedding is well-done, with lots of mini-games and distractions for the party-goers. My players certainly had fun at the wedding feats, outdoing some of the entertainers, or participating in the log-fighting game.
The climax of the game came quickly. When I look at 3e standard adventures, I'm surprised by how much more treasure and xp is awarded in a standard 3e game, as compared to a standard 1e game (and yes, I did adjust the treasure given the reduced encounter scale). Given that my players were impoverished, however, this was for me a welcome change.
All in all, this is a fun, one night adventure that is worthwhile. If you use even one other adventure in the whole magazine, the $7 price of this issue will pay for itself. It is likely that a subscription to Dungeon Magazine at less than $4 an issue is the best value in the industry.