Barrowmaze and ACKS

Does any of you have any experience with Barrowmaze, the megadungeon by Greg Gillespie? I am VERY tempted to use it (I own both volumes) and I wonder how easy it is to use with ACKS.

Also, how easy is it to convert Barrowmazes’ Labyrinth Lord monster stats into ACKS stats?

I’ve ran two or three sessions of it in ACKS, and the only changes I made were to armor classes. But I don’t know how it works long term. My main worry would be whether the treasure is the appropriate ratio.

Barrowmaze should be 99% compatible with ACKS. 

1) Reverse the AC with the formula (9 - LL AC) = ACKS AC.

2) Add proficiencies, if desired, to any NPCs

3) Check out the major encounters and adjust the treasure ratios as desired


Thanks for the tips!

You'll also want to calculate morale as 8 minus the listed score (so that a LL morale 8 is 0, 12 is +4, 4 is -4). If you want to get really detailed you can check the XP values for monsters - some have shifted.

I will, thank you! :slight_smile:

My group is making their way to Barrowmaze next session. Good to see I have my bases covered.

Asaris, this is likely a bit late for you. I’d love to see your feedback on running the dungeon.

I’m getting ready to run Barrowmaze. I ran an analysis of the above-ground Barrow Mounds monster xp to treasure value ratio and it comes out very close to 1:4 if you don’t include the base cost sale value of the magic items.

If you do include the potential sale cost of the magic items, it doesn’t even come close as the ratio is 1:45.

The breakdown is 1,001 xp in monsters, 3,794 gp in mundane treasure, and 45,259 gp worth of magic items.

I have not yet calculated the values for the underground Barrowmaze itself.

CORRECTION: The xp value of the monsters is only 431. I was mistakenly using the Labyrinth Lord xp values for the 2 Barrow Guardians, which in the module are listed as 350 xp each. However, in ACKS, these 3 HD* monsters are only worth 65 xp each.

So, the above-ground mounds are a little rich in treasure value with a ratio closer to 1:9. Shrug. One might look on this as the proverbial carrot with the underground maze being the stick. :slight_smile:

With regard to the ratio, I (and the treasure tables) generally ignore the sale price of magic items. If you include it into the mix, it essentially forces the PCs to sell magic items to level. ACKS is more-or-less built on the assumption that magic items are kept or given to henchmen in most cases.

The occasional sale of a magic item is rare enough to be an “XP treat”.

I played in a nearly year long, weekly Barrowmaze game, using LL rules. It certainly doesn’t feel treasure heavy on the player side in that rule set. After casualties, and with a drop-in player base, we have a mix of 3rd, 2nd and 1st level characters, and even the leveled veterans have only a couple hundred gp each left over.

Surviving characters have spent loot on plate armor, mule trains, Raising dead companions (twice, with many more left by the wayside), outfitting and paying hirelings, and massive amounts of mundane equipment. We actually traded out a magic weapon for one of the Raises due to lack of funds at one point. :frowning:

What I don’t know is just how much loot we’ve missed. The GM keeps a good poker face.

I do know of one good haul we lost. In the barrow with the carved stone pillar-warriors and the bowl of gems, we got the gems out by bypassing/running from the guardians, because they looked too tough to fight, then got TPK’d by wandering giant scorpions just outside - all except for a hireling halfling, who got away with the gems. (So I figure somewhere there’s a retired, leveled halfling living the good life - the bastard.)

All of which is to say, I wouldn’t worry about adjusting treasure values downward. The 'maze is tough enough anything they carry out should be well-earned.

The one way I could be wrong is if ACKS gives enough of a boost in survivability, from the healing proficiency, mortal wounds table instead of auto-death at 0 hp, fighter’s cleave and damage bonus, etc. (I actually have yet to see ACKS in play, I’m in prep mode but committed to several other ongoing games.) But reports make it sound like ACKS is deadly enough at low levels you should be okay.

I only ran Barrowmaze for three sessions, so this might not be an accurate portrayal, but I did find the above ground vaults to be a bit treasure heavy (especially if they encounter some giant frogs as well!). But on the other hand, I don’t think they ever found any treasure of note underground, so it might well balance out.