DMs Guild Review – Nameia’s Laboratory

A review copy of “Nameia’s Laboratory” was provided by the publisher. Find more DMs Guild Reviews on my website and YouTube channel.

Support my work by using affiliate links for shopping and pledging via Patreon.

Designed by: Stratos Fotakis

Nameia’s Laboratory is a short dungeon crawl through a cultist den ruled by a blood mage, the titular Nameia, for 6th level parties.

While I refer to many shorter adventures as “mini-adventures,” Nameia’s Laboratory is literally just a dungeon crawl. The entire adventure hook is either 1) your party stumbles upon the cave entrance, 2) your faction sends you to root out some nearby cultists, or 3) a local detective sends you on a mission to find some missing spellcasters in the area.

The third option is the best, but still fairly weak, especially seeing the amount of effort put into the tiefling blood sorceress and her consort and bodyguard, Cabahn. In fact, Nameia isn’t even here, it’s her simulacrum. Her blood-clone was created via a Philosopher’s Stone, which she found while traversing the Astral Sea. None of that is relevant in this tiny dungeon crawl, however, unless you want to springboard into a longer campaign with the real Nameia (who is a CR 23 by the way!).

The dungeon is full of unique cultists called the Crimson Order, which uses new statblocks including Red Blades and Sanguine Scholars. Every single monster in the dungeon (save for the gargoyles) use new custom statblocks, which is always fun to see, including blood constructs like Bloodhounds and Bloodhulks.

Nameia’s Laboratory includes a full color, detailed map that I suspect was built directly from Roll20, given that I recognize many of the assets. I’m not complaining – give me full color maps every time! The artwork throughout the adventure, including the map, is fantastic, and are also included as separate full page handouts. The text, however, is full of grammatical errors and poor sentence structure, and is in desperate need of an editor.

The dungeon layout isn’t as interesting as I hoped, with the actual blood magic laboratory representing only a single (though large) room – and it’s entirely skippable! Once the party makes it past a trap and fights some Crimson Order cultists, they can either pick a lock to go down to the lab, or continue down a hallway to fight more cultists, solve a door riddle (and possibly fight the guardian gargoyles) and enter the final boss room.

That would be a shame as the lab is easily the best part of the dungeon, featuring the usual evil experiment creepiness, as well as the captured-but-still-alive spellcasters who need rescuing. Weirdly, rescuing one of the trapped sorcerers sets off an Alarm spell that triggers Nameia, Cabahn, and her two bloodhounds to come rushing through a secret door and forcing a final confrontation, possibly quite early if this is the first room the PCs stumble into.

Nameia has a neat little backstory but none of it is really used in the context of this adventure. I wish there was a journal or something the party could find so they knew who they were dealing with before they find her. The only journal can be found after already encountering and defeating the simulacrum. I’m also not sure I even like the idea of the simulacrum as it seems pointless unless you want to use the real Nameia later one, which is far beyond the scope of this adventure.

Pros:

  • Interesting and thematic custom NPC statblocks and new magic items.
  • Fantastic artwork with full page handouts.
  • Full color, detailed dungeon map.

Cons:

  • Frequent grammatical errors and awkward phrasing.
  • Awkward dungeon design makes it easy to skip the actual laboratory room, or force an early boss fight.

The Verdict: Nameia’s Laboratory looks gorgeous, including a full color map, but I found the overall design lacking.

A review copy of “Nameia’s Laboratory” was provided by the publisher. Find more DMs Guild Reviews on my website and YouTube channel.

Support my work by using affiliate links for shopping and pledging via Patreon.

Author: roguewatson

Freelance Writer

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s