Fate of Fools (Pawns of
Fate of Fools is a combined adventure/supplement for use with Elric!,
Chaosium's revamped version of their popular Stormbringer game based on the
worlds created by author, Michael Moorcock. Stuffed into the 62 pages are two
adventures and snippets of information concerning fascinating locations that
provide settings for many of Elric's epic adventures.
The first adventure, The Book of Brilliant Things, is really going to appeal to
those GMs who like to run free-form games. You're given an introduction to the
plot, i.e. what has gone on before the adventurers become involved, a timeline
of what other NPCs are up to and then the rest is left up to you. Sufficient
details are given with regard to NPCs and locations, and really, this is all
you should need for this adventure. The players are then left on their own to
fathom things out and wander the streets of Raschil and Casandria.
The Book of Brilliant Things will make a great one or two night adventure and
should leave the players with either friendly NPC contacts throughout the city,
or scrambling for a one way ticket on the first demon out of town.
The second adventure, Four Seasons, is a more delving, possibly classic,
campaign style adventure. It could, at a push, be condensed into two or three
gaming sessions, but I think it deserves more. It takes the characters on a
hike that takes in such sights as The Weeping Wastes and The Sighing Desert in
a year long campaign (game time) with love as its driving factor. Many more
adventure opportunities show themselves during the quest, and I think I'll be
saving this adventure until a time more information becomes available. Again
this adventure could be constructed as free form, but it does tend a little
more to the linear style than Book of Brilliant Things. And, if you choose to
go with one particular optional ending, please send photos of your players'
faces to me care of the editorial address!
Both scenarios have no defined ending. Things could go several ways and
pointers are given to several possible outcomes - some of which are not
favourable to the characters. Something that both adventures also have in
common is the "nemesis" factor - this means that the PCs cannot drag their
feet. Throughout both scenarios they are constantly in competition with other
forces questing for the same thing, something that Mr. Moorcock's books dwell
quite heavily on for that extra touch of added excitement.
Overall: I cannot fault either of these adventures. They both set out to do
what they intend, and both follow the style of urgent epic journeys, love, and
sadness portrayed in the Elric sagas. If I were to make a complaint, then it is
the fact that only skimpy details exist throughout of the lands that the
players must navigate to fulfil their quest. I hope that there will be a
following sourcebook that deals with this. [yen]
Review by Stig
Product supplied by Chaosium Inc.