Even for a low-level party of 1st-2nd level characters, a bunch of kobolds shouldn't be much of a problem, right? This module sets out to warn adventurers not to underestimate their enemies... the hard way (of course!).
It's recommended that the party has met ordinary run-of-the-mill kobolds before, then when they find these catacombs in the base of a mountain they will assume that the resident kobold tribe is more of the same. A few suggestions are provided for getting them there, or they might merely be travelling and notice the entrance. Like all good adventurers, they wander in and... The introductory notes for the DM include scaling information, an adventure overview, a list of wandering monsters and loads of background, as well as a new game mechanic: augmetation. This is a temporary magical changes to a creature, caused by residual enchantments left by a previous very-powerful resident and triggered by moving into an affected area, lasting only whilst the creature is there. For this was once the home of a powerful wizard called Verdivis, who conducted all manner of magical experiments here. Needless to say, these augmentations can also affect party members - but unlike the kobolds, who are use to them, they'll have to figure out what the augmentation is and how to utilise it - probably under combat conditions!
It all makes for an interesting delve, with a backstory that holds together well - although, as always, the real challenge is to share the actual underlying story, rather than just its effects, with the party. Everything is described cearly with notes on the inhabitants of each area and their likely (violent) response to intruders. There are also some pictures to show the players what their characters see. Treasure is fairly small, but interesting, and there's some stuff looted during caravan raids conducted by the kobolds to be had as well. There is the potential for further adventures should the kobold chieftain escape - and if he sees things going against him, that's what he will try to do!
Overall it is a good, thoughtful low-level adventure that should challenge the party and keep them on their toes, one that is nicely embedded into the growing history of a campaign world if you make full use of the background information.
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Reviewed: 5 October 2018