Bandit’s Nest is a short adventure by Dan Coleman for 1st level characters, the first adventure of his Dungeons on Demand Kickstarter. The PDF is 15 pages long, with one page used for the cover and the last page used for a very brief legal notice, apparently requested by Wizards of the Coast – a much nicer move than just shutting the Kickstarter down with a C&D letter!
The adventure concerns a band of kenku bandits who have recently captured a local villager, as well as conducting regular raids on local travellers. Three adventure hooks are presented: rescue the villager, find a stolen MacGuffin, or be raided by the Kenku (and follow them back to their lair).
The “nest” is an old, abandoned temple complex, with seven buildings surrounding a central area. A number of monsters and traps make up the encounters. There’s a nice amount of detail in the text, and the chaotic nature of the creatures is displayed by their poor responses to a sudden attack. Some of the encounters could be challenging – especially to a party who blunder into things – but it looks nicely balanced. There are one or two tricks to entertain the players, although the adventure generally leans towards not including a lot of weird stuff.
The maps are basic but effective, and the one piece of art it uses is excellent. The writing is generally good, but it would benefit from another pass by an editor; there are a number of instances where the words used aren’t quite correct, in addition to the text displaying poor sentence construction and several grammatical mistakes.
Overall, it’s a competent adventure, if not a spectacular one. It fulfils its promise of delivering a short adventure that can be easily dropped into an existing campaign, and it does so with some nice, inventive touches. It shows enough promise that I am very interested to see what Dan Coleman can do with the higher-level adventures he intends to write as part of his Kickstarter.