Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Unearthing a Treasure

I dug through some of my gaming things and unearthed a booklet I hadn't seen in years; Apothecary on the Street of Dreams (AotSoD) written by Bob Liddil. The red cover has a sketch of a skull mortar and bone pestle that demands attention. When I saw it started with a short story, I groaned. For some reason game fiction is lousy most of the time. But I was happy to discover Bob Liddil writes a good story.

Part 1 is titled 'Tales'. It is a single story that provides background of the sinister mind that created the magics in Part 2. Griswald Grimm provides 30 interesting concoctions in Part 2. Each concoction is given a full page of detail including suggested prices and read the special properties section because some of these salves, ointments, or potions have some interesting side effects.

What I like about AotSoD is it gives the art of alchemy a personality. It's not just a simple you find two healing potions. There is a potency and danger in Griswald Grimm's designs. It gives depth to a part of the game that is often glossed over.

Part 3 is another story of Griswald Grimm and his apprentice Fleet O' Foot.

The final section, although it is not labeled Part 4, but rather The Karnuth Manuscripts. This is probably my favorite section because it describes books that contain powerful formulas. One manuscript teaches non-magic user how to throw I fireball and is noted to have been banned by the Wizard's Guild National Committee. Griswald even includes his own book in there (AotSoD). This is a great resource to make libraries more interesting.

The other feature of this book that I like is it is system neutral. There are no giant stat blocks wasting precious space, just a lot of good writing and fun. If you are a collector or need something to jazz up the alchemical side of your game Bob Liddil has already come up with some great ideas. And since my rediscovery of his book I will be implementing some of the ideas into my campaign.

Here is a link to Bob Liddil's Digitropolis webpage.

1 comment:

  1. System Neutral Rules. It is a like a recipe where the Game Master follows it moslty but adds his own flare.