Thursday, September 15, 2011

It's Been 30 Years, They Still Haven't Done It. I Guess I Will.

Click to enlarge.(Unless you're running a PC in a "Keep On The Borderlands" campaign)


Melan said...

I don't get it. Did what? Put the monster stats on the margins of the map?

John said...

The stats are unnecessary, yeah. Just the titles of each entry emblazoned on the map is enough - "raider camp", "mad hermit" etc.

James said...

I like the convenience, myself and will print this out for my KotB folder. Thanks! :)

Kiel Chenier said...

D&D is a game that should be easy to get into, be a challenge to feel like you're mastering, and be as efficient as possible if you're a DM.

Good job.

Also, what's a keep on the borderlands?

Chris Goodwin said...

It's a keep.

And it's located... on.... some borderlands.

Spawn of Endra said...

I always thought the challenge of the module was to keep your party on the borderlands. They're so close to crossing that border, but you've got to make sure they stay back on this side.

Zak Sabbath said...


John, if the stats are necessary AT ALL anywhere in the module or the game, then they are way better right there on the map then on some totally other place. You gain time and lose nothing by putting them there.


yes. Saves a lot of time.


I always thought the challenge of the module is not looking at how very very very little information was provided in the keys to the rooms and not screaming IF THAT'S ALL THATS THERE THEN WHY COULDN"T YOU JUST WRITE THAT ON THE MAP INSTEAD OF MAKING ME FLIP BACK AND FORTH OVER AND OVER.

But that's probably just me.

Melan said...

Zak S: Ah, I overthought it. :)

Chris Goodwin said...

And if there's more than that, they could maybe put the page number on the map as well.

John said...

@Zak: The stats aren't the first thing I need to know, though. Assuming I haven't memorised everything, I still have to turn to the key to see the actual situation - the mad hermit pretends to be friendly, etc. As long as I'm putting text on the map, I'd rather it be that. That way I can put all the stats on the facing page and I don't need the booklet at all.

Anonymous said...

Arrg - sign in just ate my comment.

Anyhow - I was JUST looking for something like this yesterday. I spent the better part of an hour googling an unsuccessful combination of words, looking for some sort of DM "cheat-sheet" for the Slaver modules.

My table is still on A1 and I am prepping A2 for them, but I've noticed that the module info is given out with important information jammed in with all sorts of flavor text.

It basically mandates that the DM transfer the encounter information to a different workspace. The type of crib sheet you just posted is exactly what is needed. A1- "Slave Pits of the Undercity" is really straightforward for the most part (despite the misleading name - you are really just under a temple.) A2 "Secret of the Slavers (sic) Stockade" is something else entirely with a ton of if:than conditional clusterfucks which alert patrols and cause ambushes. Having a simplified breakdown of encounters/monsters/inhabitants would be a godsend.

As always, fantastic work, Zak. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Whoops- I realized I left some thoughts out. So basically, for the last 30 years, every DM worth a copper has made their own encounter crib-sheet - and granted, these get written of, scribled on and generally messed up really fast - but it is surprising that there isn't a treasure trove of these out in the interwebs somewhere already.

Perhaps I just don't know the proper lingo. AD&D, by nature of all the iterations (different editions, books, video games, novelizations, etc) does not easily lend itself to easy search-engine experiences.

In eithercase - thanks for reading my mind.

Zak Sabbath said...


I assume either:

A) you already read the module and so when you see "crazy hermit" you remember who he is, and you remember everything else that isn't in the statblock, (and somewhat...

B) the details provided on the actual pages for the other monsters are so trivial and tiny that you might as well just look at the stats and figure out your own damn encounter)