IFReviewed by Tom Zuchowski on 2006-05-06 08:26
MAIN PGM Version: 5
Extra Commands: GIVE
Deleted Commands: None
Special Features: 10-direction
Playing Time: 1 hour
Reviewer Rating: 6.0
Description: The noted archaeologist, Dr. Andrew Whitehead, approaches you in the Main Hall. He says, "You have been well recommended as an experienced Adventurer and I would like to hire you as a guide. I plan to explore the caverns of Lanst in search of artifacts of the fabled Lanstians. My research indicates that the caverns were inhabited many centuries ago by a civilization of great capabilities!
"I've prepared a standard contract." He passes over a legal-looking paper:
1. I will guide Dr. Whitehead through the caverns of Lanst. 2. I will give all artifacts of indicated archaeological value to Dr. Whitehead. 3. All non-archaeological artifacts are mine to keep or sell. 4. Dr. Whitehead's suggestions will be considered in all decisions. 5. I will receive 5000 gold pieces when the party returns to the Main Hall.
You sign, and together you set out. After many days of following old maps and weary searching, you find the caverns of Lanst!
Comment: This is a very large adventure for its time, with 97 rooms and an adequate number of artifacts. The ten-direction map is quite complex, but holds no nasty surprises. I came across a few traps that triggered a "narrow escape" special effect rather than actual death, which was a nice touch. There are several possible endings, depending on how well you fulfill your contract obligations.
The scenario takes place in an ancient, abandoned location which doesn't have much to offer in the way of opponents for combat. Rick compensates for this by sprinkling looters throughout the complex. They felt somewhat contrived and in my opinion added very little to the adventure, but there would have been no combat at all without them.
While the adventure was well written, it lacked a plot or any puzzles to solve. The "quest" consisted of wandering about, picking up artifacts and fighting off looters. If there had been more content or variety, it could easily have garnered a higher rating. With no puzzles nor difficult encounters but with a challenging map, it gets a (5) for difficulty.
Used with Matthew Clark's kind permition.
Original review available at Eamon Adventurer's Guild Online website.