B3 Palace of the Silver Princess May 24, 2021 15:19:30 GMT -5
Post by GRWelsh on May 24, 2021 15:19:30 GMT -5
This is one of the first modules I ever bought. In the spring of 1981 I played D&D for the first time when a kid at school DMed B1 In Search of the Unknown for us. In the summer of 1981 I got the Moldvay D&D Basic set for my birthday, and started DMing B2 right away, and using that as the basis to draw and key my own dungeons. Soon after that I bought B3 Palace of the Silver Princess (1981) by Tom Moldvay and Jean Wells. It was the green cover version and had I no inkling of the original orange covered version until many years later. My understanding is that original was written by Jean Wells and the project was taken away from her and the published version was edited heavily enough by Tom Moldvay to justify a co-writer credit. This module has a lot of nostalgic value because of the time period when I got it, and the artwork, and the attempt to create something like a fairy tale epic. Just reading the module was enjoyable because I could imagine the ending playing out very cinematically. When I actually DMed it, however, it was one of the first TSR disappointments I had because it is railroady, the dungeon maps are a mess, the encounters often feel random and illogical, and the story is muddy... Also, why would heroic characters trying to save the Princess loot her palace? I remember running into a lot of problems when I DMed the module which had to be in 1981-1982, when I was 13 years old. From what I recall, the players started to treat it like a regular dungeon in which they killed monsters and took their treasure, and had trouble understanding what they were supposed to do. I haven't DMed it since, but I've often thought about running it again with revisions or using it for inspiration for my own adventure, set in the Crystalmist Mountains or the Barrier Peaks. The ancient evil being behind it all is somewhat Lovecraftian, which is a plus... It reminded me of the Elder Elemental God moreso than a typical evil deity or Dark Lord. I do like the fairy tale epic feel of the module, and the valley of Haven, but the problem is with the execution and it wasn't a good fit for the mentality of "the reason we're adventuring is to find treasure and magic items."