2019-09-15

Tomb of Horrors Question for You

So my Tomb of Horrors is some mint-condition 1981-ish copy I picked up years ago for super cheap, when people didn't care about 1st edition AD&D.  So yay me for being effectively the first person to run this copy, BUT there are misprints, which is making running this a little tricky.

A question for people who have other copies - room 9, the "Complex of Secret Doors", it has the text "...each round that there are characters in a shaded room, a number of bolts will be fired into the area from hidden devices..."

The map has no shaded rooms.  I'm guessing they are supposed to be the four rooms that you can walk through without finding secret doors, to punish characters going for the easy route?

Can anyone confirm?

I'm trying to keep this expedition authentic to the source material, it just never seemed that terrible when reading.  I played in it when I was 12-ish, and only for a part of it, and barely remember.

Gutboy's player was clearly traumatized, but that was under a high schooler age DM, and we presumably all remember how antagonistic high school DMing was in practice.

18 comments:

  1. My copy has the same lack of clarity. The four easy rooms makes sense to me. The party would try to rush through to not get shot at and end up getting to the false door and then having to go back. likely getting shot at 10 or so times. So long and thanks for the resources, suckas.

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  2. Pat---I'll take a look after I'm out of the mega-dungeon that my son Henry is running me in this afternoon.

    To clarify: you have the 1981 green cover version right? ....allan

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  3. I checked the reprint in Dungeons of Dread (compilation of S1 through S4) and none of the rooms are shaded on the map there either.

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  4. Dungeons of Dread specifies the rooms are 9A, 9C, 9E, and 9G.

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    1. Weird choices. I wonder if those are just random guesses or if there is source material?

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  5. I've never seen any specifics about where the darts are supposed to come from, but I think like most early dungoen products (try making sense of Temple of the Frog!) there's always space for Gm interpretation. You can't be that terse and have slapshdash editing with any expectation that there won't need to be fill in. Anything you do is undoubtedly in the spirit of the original. I kinda figured it was a constant barrage of darts throughout the whole room. Holes opening and closing in the walls triggering Trypophobia as well as flights of darts.

    It's odd of course, because so much of the idea behind the convention/competitive modules that Tomb of Horrors gave rise to is trying to create identical adventure experiences - hence the boxed text, the picture books and specific points for specific actions(always make those halflings invisible!) I find the impossibility of this obvious, but it's always sort of necessary for trap dungeons as well. Glad you are running the Tomb.

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    1. I strongly suspect the guys will do a risk/reward analysis and go dungeoneering next time - Gutboy was just about having a heart attack remembering the Tomb from high school. Hope they persevere though, I've always wanted to run it

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  6. The original 1975 version of the module (from the Art & Arcana book) makes it clear that every lettered room (a through g) has the bolt attacks.

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  7. Jesus Christ Pat! Wake up and quit being distracted. Look at this lunacy.

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    2. Fix one problem and a new one pops up - ugh.

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