A Danger at Deepforge is an adventure for 3-7 first or second level characters, by FreshRad Games.
The characters are recruited by a dwarven noble in order to retrieve a heat pump from an abandoned dwarven mine. This pump is one of a kind and is considered very valuable by the individual. The mine and the area around it has been taken over by monsters, so finding the pump and returning it is going to be a bit of a challenge.
There are around 10 areas the characters can explore. There’s actually a flowchart with the areas and the sequence in which they can be visited, based on the choices of the players.
The combat encounters feature various monsters, most of which can be found in subterranean areas. What I liked is that some combat encounters can be avoided by social interaction. The best part, however, is that there can be consequences by doing this. I’m referring to the goblins the characters will encounter at the beginning of the adventure. Passing without combat ensuing will result in them getting ambushed at the end of the adventure.
Another combat encounter that can be avoided with social interaction is with the kobolds that currently own the heat pump. This can be a really funny encounter and the players will probably have more fun if they don’t end up fighting.
Apart from combat there are also a few other challenges, including environmental ones. In one of the areas there’s a very interesting sequence of events. It resembles a skill challenge but it’s not, because each event provides a different problem. To be more precise, the characters can solve a puzzle in order to make a minecart operational. If they do so, they can ride it and, during the ride, they will encounter various situations. For example, a bridge may collapse or they may have to pass over a channel of magma.
Overall, the encounters seem balanced. They are optimized for a party of five 1st level adventurers, but there are instructions on how to adjust each encounter.
There’s no art in the adventure, apart from the cover art. There’s a handout for one of the puzzles but I don’t think it counts. As for maps, there are a few black and white ones that cover all the areas of that will be visited. They are definitely handy but I believe even a new Dungeon Master would have no issue running the adventure without maps.
Overall, I believe A Danger at Deepforge is a good adventure that also covers various needs. It’s a two hour adventure so it can be a nice oneshot. It’s easy to run so a new Dungeon Master could use it. Moreover, it feels like it could be a good introductory adventure for new players. And, finally, it features a nice story so it could be used as a sidequest in your campaign.