It was dead silent in the ranks, so breathlessly tense that the creaking of our leather armor felt deafening; just as silent as our Davokar outpost had been for the past three weeks. Even the sellswords that our Lord had hired in an attempt to tip the scales in his favor seem to appreciate the gravity of the situation – they made up the rear of the column, atypically in line, unusually disciplined. Silent.
We had no idea what to expect. The scouts had not come back, neither the first, nor the second troupe that had left for the outpost. Some homing pigeons belonging to the latter returned, but without information about what had happened. Was it a belligerent branch of Clan Karohar? A raving liege troll or a pack of predators? An ancient or dark contagion, or indeed some roaming abomination?
The truth proved even worse: Iron Pact warriors, backed by Ironsworn barbarians. They attacked without question, without hesitation, without mercy – out of the shadows, from the foliage, from behind root and stem and stone. My advice to you who are to inherit my Lord’s domain is simple: Let yourself settle for what can be harvested under open skies; that which is shadowed by the trees of Davokar is not yours to own or salvage. Accept this, or join the ranks of the dead…
With the Game Master’s Guide, Symbaroum’s collection of core books is complete! Between its covers are three solid sections, meant to inspire and support Game Masters when it comes to everything from the creation of homebrew adventures to managing sessions around the gaming table. No matter if you choose to embrace it all or only pick the goodies out of the cake, the tips and alternative rules presented in this book will certainly help make adventures in Symbaroum’s game world even more spicy, thrilling and memorable.
The Adventure section, with chapters on the design of game worlds, chronicles, adventure landscapes and of adventures set in the Underworld, Yonderworld and Spirit World. It also offers tips regarding how to construct scenarios for experienced player characters, and guidelines for Troupe Play in Symbaroum.
The Challenges section, containing alternative rules for pitched battles, advanced traps and social challenges. Adding to this are chapters on Ceremonial Magic (including sixteen ceremonies), expeditions in Davokar, exploration of ruins, the design of legendary creatures and rules for handling player characters owning and managing an estate or smaller domain.
The Rewards section, which offers suggestions on different ways of rewarding player characters and their players, aside from Experience and shiny coins. The chapters also present guidelines for designing what in Symbaroum are called Curiosities, Mystical Treasures and Artifacts, after which the book is rounded off with the description of no less than twenty seven artifacts – all of them with a unique adventure set-up.
Note that this book requires access to the Symbaroum Core Rulebook, and that it does not come into its own without the Advanced Player’s Guide and the Symbaroum Monster Codex.