Basic D&D: The Keep on the Borderlands

Yes, for a change of pace we’re going back to our roots (at least it’s the first RPG some of us played).

Session 1 - Am I the Party Intellectual?: Back to basics, with Moldvay Basic D&D.

Session 2 - I’ve Got My Pressed Raven: Adventure awaits! Though first we have to survive the Cursed Mound Theme Park and Caravan Site.

Session 3 - Both Of My Hit Points Tingling In Terror: A fight! And we start to get close to the actual dungeon…

Session 4 - I Will Disguise Myself As A Fun Guy: Into the Caves… of CHAOS.

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Hah, that brings back memories.

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Ah, that was after my time: I had given up playing D&D when it came out (new edition shock). What got me back into roleplaying in a big way was being invited into a RuneQuest II campaign.

This edition (and the Cook/Marsh Expert Set) hit the UK some time around 1982, and I believe was the first RPG to be stocked here in “normal” shops (e.g. the toys-and-games sections of department stores) rather than specialist ones (often model shops, presumably because that was where wargamers went already for paint and flock, and early D&D was regarded as a new sort of wargame). In retrospect, I assume this was imported by Games Workshop and resold to the big chains.

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I’m pleasantly excited about this module.

I pulled a copy of this module out of a used book store around age 11 after running into the Mentzer red box at school. It’s a joy to read and shaped a generation on mapping if nothing else.

I recommend Goodman Games 5e tome Into the Borderlands for its articles about this module.

I also recommend Ru Emerson’s novelization of Keep on the Borderlands. I picked it up at half price books some time ago out of incredulity at the title and I was pleasantly surprised.

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Just a shame that Roger didn’t punctuate all of his sentences by revving the chainsaw. :stuck_out_tongue: But what a great game prop for Warhammer 40k!

More about that: https://blog.firedrake.org/archive/2020/07/Bosch_AdvancedCut_18.html

(The chain stops almost at once when you release the trigger, which means it isn’t just a higher-pitched version of standard chainsaw noise.)

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Hot diggity! I’m looking forward to some good old-fashioned dungeon crawlin’ from back in the days when nobody bothered about logic in their game design. Sure, a steady diet of that sort of thing gets old, but it’s marvelous fun for periods.

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Want one…

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It’s all fun and games until somebody shouts “Bree-Yark!”

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I was really hoping that would come up when they were getting rumors!

That one’s a classic, but there’s several rumours in the B2 module that turn out to be great little misdirections, which can make the players groan in despair when they later look back and realize what the rumours really meant.

For example, there’s the rumour that “a fair maiden is trapped within the caves”. Technically correct, but the players are still in for a surprise…

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Spoilers! :innocent:

Oh, dear. :face_with_hand_over_mouth: Was the ‘caves’ part of the Caves of Chaos meant to be a surprise? :smiley:

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Session 2 - I’ve Got My Pressed Raven: Adventure awaits! Though first we have to survive the Cursed Mound Theme Park and Caravan Site.

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Am I detecting some pulls from the AD&D 2nd edition Return to the Keep on the Borderlands?

Yikes! Please, try to avoid using a word like ‘pulls’ around this lot. :no_entry_sign: Say ‘excerpt’, or ‘influence’, or ‘copy-cat shenanigans’, or anything else that doesn’t provide the Whartsies with fodder for a cheap joke. :wink:

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It’s too late. Everything provides us with fodder for cheap jokes.

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Fodder? I barely know 'er! etc.

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