Let’s go on a wild adventure! No, no, put away your hiking boots and bug repellent, we’re going on a wild adventure of the mind, so to speak. Yes, there’ll be bugs and hiking, but there’ll also be gators and pigs and tatzylwurms! Doesn’t that sound amazing??
Yes, we’re talking about the latest supplement for the Iron Kingdoms roleplaying games, Wild Adventure, for Iron Kingdoms: Unleashed. This month you can get your hands on new gear, new abilities, new careers, and a complete new adventure for your feral characters to try to meander their way through before getting eaten by a Thrullg. Let’s take a gander, shall we?
Character creation in roleplaying games, in my experience, tends to go one of two ways. Either the player creates a character that somehow represents an idealized aspect of their own personality or self image, or it’s seen as an opportunity to be something completely alien to one’s own nature. For example, a quiet, unassuming, compassionate person might make a scholarly character with healing potential, or they might break the mold and create a berserk homicidal maniac. As ever, there are shades of grey and your mileage may vary, but how many roleplaying games give you an opportunity to play a conjoined twin?
Wild Adventure introduces four new races to Iron Kingdoms Unleased – the Croak tribes (Anura), the Bogrin, Gobbers and Ogrun. Yes, we’ve seen Gobbers and Ogrun in Iron Kingdoms Full Metal Fantasy, but their inclusion in Unleashed brings them fully into the wilds of Caen. With new races come new race-specific careers (and some non-race-specific ones too) but the Croak Conjoined Twin may be the most out-of-left-field.
Specific as a starting career for Gifted Croaks, the Conjoined Twin looks like it would immediately be a handful to play, though the possibilities for either comedic twists or sinister malevolence are huge as the player juggles two personalities sharing (presumably) a torso. Arguing with yourself usually doesn’t have many advantages in the real world, but if you’re a Croak? Fast Caster is only the behinning. Battlefield control is your playground as a froggy spellcaster, revered and respected by other croaks as a reflection of the Anura’s multifaceted deity. Both members of the … twinhood? are potent spellcasters, and while non-Croaks may look upon a Conjoined Twin as a deformed monstrosity or somesuch, it just means they’re underestimating just how potent these characters can be. They come with their own spell list, for croaking out loud…
Of course, the Conjoined Twin isn’t the only new career in Wild Adventure. The Berserker wades into the fray, the Dhunian Paragon may be the closest we get to a Paladin in the Unleashed setting, the Guide promises to only lead you a little astray. The Huntsman’s bringing in the kill, the Skinwalkers are howling at the moon, the Tinkers and Trappers are sharing tea, and there’s also guildlines for making a Blackclad Mist Rider, a Bloodweaver Night Witch, Pyg Burrower, SwampGobber Raider, and a Tharn Blood Pack archer. Never let it be said that there’s a wasted opportunity to bring your Hordes models over to the RPG.
New abilities and gear also abound, from the Grappling Pistol (which should really make its way into Five Fingers…) to the Rattlesuit, which sounds like it’d be bloody terrible for sneaking around in, but magical bone armour is magical bone armour. Speaking of magic things, what about full and expanded rules for creation of magic items? I’m not just talking about weapons and armour here, either. We have Circle Orboros in the mix; I think it’s only reasonable that that Mannikins and Shifting Stones get some time in the limelight. Shamanistic traditions also invite ritual magic, be it Druidic or Dhunian or otherwise, and Wild Adventure covers those too.
The Game Master isn’t left without new toys. A series of Wilderness Encounters are presented, providing brief campaign interludes or even launching points for entire new campaigns. Why exactly *are* there Winter Trolls hunting for prey in the area? Who started the wildfire that’s raging through the forest, driving its denizens towards the edges and into the village? What happens when the fire reaches the houses, let alone the shed where all the coal is stored. Those Northkin fire-spewing trolls have to learn there art somewhere, but what about when it all goes wrong?
Then there’s new things to throw at your adventurers. Oh, hey, a Razorwing Griffin! Arkadius’ new boars! Naturally, my personal favourites are the Tatzylwurms. Now, what about Lord of the Feast? Pureblood Warpwolves? I believe I hinted at Thrullgs turning up earlier…
In the end, it wouldn’t be a roleplaying supplement without a story being told. All of those little encounters earlier are wonderful and can make up an evening or two’s gaming, but when you’re looking for a grander story… Blood Runs Cold.
A Hero-level (0-15XP) adventure set in swamps, Blood Runs Cold brings the players into the murk and the mire to face an insane shaman bent on bring an ancient and powerful spirit into the world to wreak havoc, devour the living, conquer all before him, and generally make a mess of things for everyone else. I can’t say too much more – don’t want to spoil things – but suffice to say the title of the story should give you a decent indication the type of antagonist your players are going to be staring down. Far be it for me to spell it out directly, so here’s a picture of some Farrow from the book, which don’t appear in Blood Runs Cold.
Whether you’re new to the Iron Kingdoms or a veteran, whether you’re new to roleplaying or an old hand, Wild Aventure is a fun read and a decidedly useful tome for crafting the next chapters of your adventures in the wilds of Western Immoren. Consult your FLGS or preferred online retailer to get your hands on a copy.