I'm considering buying the Shadizar boxed set and/or Black Kingdoms.
On a scale of 1 to 10 (1="ick! terrible" and 10="wow! great") how would those who bought them rate them compared to Mongoose's other books?
Well, our group is just in the first adventure from Black Kingdoms. Besides some flaws it runs nicely. The Hackfactor is very conanish. The story´s straight, but fun. You´re characters won´t get lost easily, the major plot parts are clear or are thrown at the players.
If you´re looking for intrigue, a lot of different pathes this adventure is nothing for you. But we had fun so far, wading through hordes of crazy enemies.
All in all it seems to be soemthing you can run without much preperation.
black kingdom is ace but needs a little work on the links to be a 10/10 shadizar is good but tainted by the map scam that mongoose had no idea about it also for me personally weaker than the second set but still as I would give any new product from wizards a maxium of 3.
Still waiting on the Shadizar map...wonder if I should email again?
Anyway, BK is very good and I agree the Shadizar set is very nice but the adventure lacks any real cohesive zest. Needs zest! For what it's worth, of all my Mongoose supplements, Shadizar is the one I read the least.
True dat, but Shadizar does have one adventure and I was trying to compare the Shad adventure and the BK ones. But I agree both are very different and depending on your campaign would be used differently.
Shadizar is great because its a box set I got it a few weeks ago, counters and stat sheets for npc's the main books detail about Zamoria is great the other books are well so-so the second book has feats, and a prestige class master thief type thing you choose a certain aspect of the thief genre pickpocket for example, and monsters section. Not all of them are monsters but you know what I mean. Most are from some of Jordan’s stories, I'm pretty sure almost all are. The adventure is really silly and just way to choppy, it just doesn't make sense eventually. The adventure should go slower, not just quickly launch the Characters to the end fighting a huge succubus from D&D. The map problem is it's a lame map from a D&D map portfolio. Check out the map a week archives 2003. It’s the one of a city with a funny symbol in the middle made out of canals.
Interesting. I found Shadizar to be very well done. The counters and the cards are great. It has a great storyline that leaves infinite possiblilities for additional plots and adventures.
Keep in mind that Shadizar is "Sin City" (maybe that is why I like it so much :twisted:
Not sure how to rank it based on a scale of 10 but it would be high on the list relative to the adventure series and gives a great deal of regional info as well. A must have for anyone thinking of running campaigns anywhere near Zamora.
I haven't read Tales of the Black Kingdoms yet so can't rate that...
The GM Book for Shadizar boxed set is GREAT. (Keep in mind, since you seem from most posts to be a Howard purist, that about 1/3 of the city is inspired by a Robert Jordan pastiche which, while I hated the story and his portrayal of Conan, most of the NPCs were good and the city had a nice feel ala something out of Ali Baba or Tales of 1001 Nights, so their conversions in this book are good too).
I didn't really care for the adventure, but even if you don't you can easily use elements of it in your own adventures.
I don't remember what book 2 is--[edit: looked up Product Description]. I really like the way the city is described, laid out, the Jordan inferences on the Desert, the Merchants' Quarter, caravans, & etc. The boxed set also gives hints at the least about the other locations of Zamora for you to develop as you wish, often referencing the sources that inspired their location. The stats for NPCs & monsters may be very useful too.
I got the shoddy map with my boxed set (Dungeons & Dragons city with triangle islands and 120 degree square cut canal running through city) but was warned about it beforehand via this forum so expected it. Mongoose was great with the replacement map (see LBH's post first page about getting replacement maps). The counters are nice as well.
Overall Shadizar is pretty good, though I guess I'd have preferred a book format like Aquilonia or so, it was a gimick Mongoose tried twice so Vincent Darlage wrote it up to suit the format given him if I recall, thus 3 paperback books and counters. I plan on using it for the next campaign I'm getting ready to start, I really like most of it, and like even the least successful Mongoose release better than the best WotC releases (with a couple exceptions re: a couple of the adventures).
Here I'll post the product page for reference (I do it out of habit):