D&D 5E Are You Excited about Tomb of Annihilation?

The stream & announcement thread quickly filled up with reports of the adventure's details as well as discussion of other products and speculation (plus comments on the Realms…).
It's a long thread now, and hard to jump into to actually discuss the product.

So, new thread time: Chult with, undead, dinosaurs, and undead dinosaurs; Acererak, a new tomb of "horror", and stealing resurrection magic.
Are you excited? Are you apathetic? Are you waiting to see?

My thoughts:
They teased Chult and Acererak a few times prior to the stream, so we had an idea it was coming.
I was initially trepidatious about the return of Acererak. Acey is pretty bland as far as villains go. His traditional evil scheme basically amounted to hiding in a cupboard and letting adventurers kills themselves. Ostensibly while he watches. At his very evillest, Acererak was basically Joel from MST3K: watching tragedy unfold in front of him and making sarcastic comments at the poor thinking and accidental comedy.
I was also hopefully with the release of Tales of the Yawning Portal they wouldn't feel the need to "update" Tomb of Horrors. At best it's an endcap to an adventure: since you don't really enter the Tomb until the characters are high level. So 90% of the adventure is only tangentially related.
So, his return *ahem* lived and died based on his new evil scheme.

The set-up and location for the adventure really works. Mashing up Isle of Dread with the Tomb of Horrors works, as the former really needs a purpose to be in the jungle. Having the bulk of the campaign being about exploring an island works, giving you something to do. Or you can just jump right to the tomb for a mini game. Or you can drop the metaplot and just have jungle exploration.
It's a good compromise.

Similarly, the evil scheme is really solid. Resurrection magic is something almost every campaign touches, and it's a huge trope of the game. D&D is a game where death means little at high levels. Especially in the Realms. There are big name characters who have been resurrected. Like most of Drizz't's friends. It indirectly threatens some of the most powerful figures in the Realms. Which is a lovely, dramatic event that's theoretically Realmshaking, but without impacting the geography of the world in the slightest.
Plus, it also threatens old PCs. Any campaign that had a resurrected character that retired now has thise character's lives jeopordized. The heroes of this campaign aren't just stopping evil, they're saving their past characters!
It also makes resurrection more dangerous in the adventure. Death is more final. Which makes the game that little more deadly, befitting the tomb and villain.

We'll see how the final execution works. They said a lot of stuff about Storm King's Thunder that turned out to be far less important than they implied. (Like the giantess sisters. Or the titular Storm King.) But it sounds awesome!

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I'm on the fence. It actually sounds like it could be fun. We just started CoS, though, and I haven't picked up TFtYP yet. No idea when I'll get to it and whether there will be something better by the time I need it.

Also, it's in the Realms, which is starting to be a tremendous rub, for me. It's nowhere near the Sword Coast, though, so I'm actually kind of torn about that factor.

I guess, if it was set in Hepmonaland/Xen'drik/unnamed world and I was just wrapping something up, it sounds interesting enough that I'd almost certainly grab it. Being five sessions into another big adventure gives me the luxury of thumbing my nose at the Realms.

So, that's the brutally honest assessment.

Edit: Just as a note, I'm not going to thread crap. There's a whole thread where I'm whining about the Realms. I only included a simple statement that is, I hope, as concise as possible to answer the actual question.
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(He, Him)
Also, it's in the Realms, which is starting to be a tremendous rub, for me. It's nowhere near the Sword Coast, though, so I'm actually kind of torn about that factor.
For me, setting it in the Realms is a plus. I'm not saying you need to like the Realms too, but just adding a contrasting opinion. The Realms has always been tolerant of a DM carving out their own piece and doing what they want, while providing a mythic medieval backdrop with plenty of colour and variety.


I find it very intriguing, as one of my campaign ideas once my two CoS games ended was an Eberron Q'Barra jungle game using the Eberron adventure Eyes of the Lich Queen as a foundation. I've delved a little bit into formulating it, using Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh (and its sequels) and Isle of Dread as additional sites intermixed with EotLQ. Tomb of Annihilation might be a really strong complement to those ideas (and who knows, could become the foundation adventure itself, as EotLQ moves out of the jungle about a 1/3rd of the way through.)

The big question for me is how many undead play into the adventure, as Curse of Strahd has been full of them and I might need to take a break from them for my next game. A big dungeon crawl sounds great (since CoS doesn't really have any) and I love the idea of a jungle setting... I'll just need to see what kinds of locations and encounters they include and whether it's worth using / adapting ToA into a game or not rather than just picking out other modules that are better suited to what I'd like to run.


I'm excited because of the people involved in the project, which isn't the usual roster...

[SECTION]Tomb of Annihilation. Adventure design by Christopher Perkins, Will Doyle, and Steve Winter, with additional design by Adam Lee. Story consulting by the award-winning creator of Adventure Time, Pendleton Ward.[/SECTION]

Chris Perkins – I've really enjoyed his work ever since his Planescape adventure "Umbra" in DUNGEON. An excellent DM and storyteller. I know that he'll go back to the roots of Tomb of Horrors but will put a surprising spin on things that take it in a new direction. His words resonate for me: "Tomb of Horrors. It's the dungeon itself that's out to get you...that's the antagonist of that module, in my opinion... It's similar in Tomb of Annihilation. Acererak is creating something. That something is your antagonist." (source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FRe8KFc2-w around 6:00 mark)

Will Doyle – A creative designer/cartographer who won 1st place in the 2014 One Page Dungeon Contest and 2014 ENWorld 5e Adventure Design Contest, who ran AL D&D Epics in 2015, and who runs the popular blog Beholder Pie. He has an ability to titrate a dungeon down into its beautiful unique essentials with great clarity.

Steve Winter – While I admit to not being a big fan of his individual work during 4e, much of his collaborative work has been terrific, and he has the long-term experience and editorial savvy when it comes to D&D, probably good having him as a more grounding presence with the other creative personas on the team.

Pendelton Ward – Though I haven't followed Adventure Time, what I've seen of his work is very creative, whimsical, and brings a clever spin and lots of humor to traditional D&D themes. If anyone could give a dungeon personality – aesthetics, traps, layout, personality – Pendelton Ward is a really good choice.

Adam Lee – I don't know much about, beyond him being a WOTC staff creative writer who worked on Out of the Abyss.

Greg K

I am apathetic. Like their previous adventures, I will not buy it. I don't buy published adventures. I also have no interest in dinosaurs when it comes to D&D and no interest in post 1e greybox Forgotten Realms (and its supplements).


Hi, I'm a Mindflayer, but don't let that worry you
I've always been big on traditional fantasy -- think medieval Europe with magic and dragons. Anything that strays too far from that path has a lot of natural skepticism to overcome.

Here's the funny thing, though... Three years ago, if you had asked me what adventures I wanted to see in 5th Edition, Ravenloft, Chult, and the Underdark would have been at the very bottom of the list. Then Curse of Strahd and Out of the Abyss came out and, to my surprise, turned out to be the best adventure paths so far.

So while Chult is not my cup of tea (like the Dragonborn race, it doesn't even exist in my version of Forgotten Realms), I'll give it a chance. Wizards has earned as much. They've proved that they can take just about any fantasy trope -- even my least favorite -- and turn it into a compelling, must-have adventure path.

So yes, I'm looking forward to Tomb of Annihilation.

I’d say I’m somewhere between mildly interested and excited. The Stream of Annihilation was a cool event, and it’s hard not to catch some of that enthusiasm. That being said, I’m in the final act of running Out of the Abyss, and that last thing I want to do is run another megamodule after the last year and a half.


I crit!
I can't wait to run this. It hits a lot of great themes for me. Lost city. Unknown wilderness sandbox like the Isle of Dread. It seems to promise some humor. Strange new places unlike most medeival fantasy. Death a very real possibility.

Can't wait.


Less excited now that they have explained it is for only levels 1-11.

It will depend on how well the hex crawling part of the adventure is for me to want to purchase it.


First Post
I'm jazzed for it!
Seems like it's going to have a solid mix of outdoor exploration, some quirky NPCs, and a dungeon crawl they put some love into, it seems like they put care into making sure it covered the "Three Pillars".

After my players came dangerously close to beating Tomb of Horrors, they're all anxious to take him down a peg- I'm going to find a way to add in elements from the third and fourth edition Acecerak adventures to let them finally bring him down. (The third edition storyline was about Acecerak working on a plan to be able to take control of all undead- this campaign can be his first phase of that plan, where he's making more undead to possess :) )

I depends on how easy it is to adapt for use in an Eberron game. On the face of it, it seems like you could set it in the Stormwreck Bay region of Khorvair, and replace Acererak with Erandis Vol. We'll see. :erm:


Chult is one of the major locations in my campaign, and I've been using many of the classic D&D villains, and wondering what to do with Acererak.....so this looks like a no-brainer for me. It has lots of elements that I think are interesting. Notably, the bit about resurrection magic. Should be cool.


I'm on the fence. I should ask the players. I think that most will not like the idea and think it is too far from what we typically play.

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