A fanzine dedicated to bringing gonzo post apocalyptic content for the Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG from Goodman Games

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Islands of Purple-Haunted Putrescence: A Review

Full disclosure time: Venger Satanis asked me to review The Islands of Purple-Haunted Putrescence and gave me a complimentary copy to do so.

So, what did I think? Short answer: WOW! Long answer:  There is a LOT of gonzo Old School goodness in these 110 pages.

I do feel that it should be mentioned right away that the "Caution: Mature Content" warning on the cover is justified. There is a fair amount of sexual content, female slaves as a type of currency, dark twisted concepts, and possibly disturbing art. I mention this not to dissuade anyone but to alert possible purchasers that it might not be acceptable for children or the easily offended.
The Islands of Purple-Haunted Putrescence begins with 40+ pages of optional house rules compatible with most OSR games, a new monk class, setting specific rules, tons of useful random tables, and a boatload of background for the islands interspersed amongst all of the above. I would say this part of the book is pleasantly unorganized and very much reminiscent of RPG supplements written in the 70’s and 80’s. You may need to flip around a bit to find the table or section you are looking for but it is not too difficult. I really enjoyed traversing through this section as it felt like you never knew what the next pages would hold. 

Starting on Page 44 is the individual hex content listings.  These continue until page 95. The best way I can describe this section is that the previous 40 pages were Alice chasing after the Rabbit and now she has jumped down the hole into Wonderland, as written by Robert E. Howard on month long acid trip. It is a random assortment of SciFi and fantasy, depraved cult activity, the familiar and the strange. Then it just gets WEIRD. 

The last pages are dedicated to new setting specific spells and magic items befitting the insanity already displayed in the setting.
Honestly I am not sure a grouping of paragraphs containing words can describe what takes place on this Island. If the byline “An old school weird science-fantasy campaign setting and wilderness hex-crawl” written on the cover caught your interest at all, do yourself a favor and pick this up.