The Way Station
The Way Station by David Przybyla is the most recent release from Purple Duck Games for the Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG system. The Way Station is part of the Adventure Locale line written to be easily dropped into nearly any DCC RPG campaign with minimal prep. This adventure is for four to eight 3rd level characters.
The adventure involves finding a ventilation shaft from the ancient dwarven kingdom of Upanesh. A large network of tunnels connected the various wards of the Upanesh. Railcars would shuttle people and goods from way station to way station. Eventually these way stations came under attack from both earthly and supernatural beings.
Eventually the South March Way Station came under assault and a dwarf that was the chosen hero of Upan held the station as the others fled. This was the last the dwarven hero was seen.
The adventure is entered through a ventilation shaft that has been lost to time. A judge can easily work this into their campaign by either having the characters randomly come upon it, hear stories of an ancient dwarven kingdom, or perhaps even a child lost and discovered inside the ventilation shaft. Simple entry points like this make great strides to making the adventure easier to drop into a campaign world.
Once beneath the surface there are several unique things awaiting the characters. From a rather unusual rail car used by the Upanesh to the new monsters introduced in the module. True to DCC RPG fashion, none of the monsters found in the module are going to be ones the judge or players would find in a traditional monster book. Each of the monsters within are well done will make for interesting encounters.
A new magic item is also in the book. I do not want to detail it too much so as not to spoil the surprise, but I really like how the item works. One of the tenets of DCC RPG is that magic items should be special. The Way Station does this very well. The item has some story to it and has an interesting mechanism of gaining power over time in interesting ways.
It has been some time since Purple Duck Games has released a DCC RPG adventure. I was glad to have this one come across my path. I have enjoyed their previous adventures released for the system and they have been popular among my players as well.
Featuring easy placement into an existing campaign is always a strong point to an adventure when I use it. This one has just enough background to make it interesting, but still portable. Unique creatures for the various encounters help lend it the Appendix N feel and throw long seasoned players who can recite the stats for a troll from memory off their game a little. The unique magic item has an eloquent mechanic behind for those that wish to see it gain in power.
The download also includes maps for use on the Virtual Tabletop. One includes the numbering scheme and the other has the numbers removed. This is a very useful feature for the judges that run on VTTs. It is nice seeing a publisher taking notice and making their maps as easy to use with a VTT as they can.
I continue to be impressed with DCC RPG releases from Purple Duck Games. This is another adventure I look forward to working into my own DCC RPG campaign. There is also use to a judge who just wants to “borrow” the creatures and magic item from the module as well.
If your DCC RPG campaign is near the 3rd level mark, this adventure is well worth taking a look at. It is an another strong entry in an already strong adventure line.