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Operation: Rapidstrike (1980)

Operation: Rapidstrike (1980) is the first Top Secret module (well, second, if you count the one in the box) and it is rad.

The villain of the piece is Genevieve Larreau, an international criminal who has kidnapped a Nobel Prize-winning chemist in order to create a hallucinogenic drug with which to “subvert western civilization” (is this so bad a goal?) and attain geo-political domination (OK, that’s bad). She’s holed up on her island fortress of death traps  and the players are tasked with infiltrating the complex and destroying her operation. It feels like every Bond movie distilled into a D&D dungeon crawl, essentially, though the vibe is very strongly “spec ops” rather than “spies.”

That’s pretty much all that needs to be said about the module. Again, there are many illustrations by classic D&D illustrators Dee, Willingham and Otis and it is fun to see them deal with spies rather than monsters. Erol makes good use of his psychedelic stylings in depicting the effect of the hallucinogen.

Favorite thing: because it is a nighttime op, Genevieve is asleep unless the alarm is raised, which is not something I often picture evil masterminds doing…

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