D&D 5E Empire of the Ghouls

DMP

Villager
Hi

I am thinking about purchasing Empire of the Ghouls (Kobold Press) on Roll 20 and running it for my existing group. Has anyone ran this AP or played in it?
If so would welcome any feedback.
 

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GuyBoy

Hero
I’ve got it and have read it, but not run it yet because Covid hiatus has meant my group are still in early stages of Saltmarsh.
I do think it’s excellent from a read-through, with varied encounters, strong roleplay and lots of travel around Midgard, but I’m conscious I can’t give you a “proof of pudding in eating” review.
 

Rellott

Explorer
Also read it but haven’t run/played it. A lot of the earlier episodes feel thematically similar: you need X so you can proceed on your main mission, but before you can have X the person who has it now needs you to do Y.

The latter half is very sandboxy. I’m not really good at running sandboxes as a DM, so that was a little bit of a turnoff to me but others may love it.

A lot of the adventure feels grimdark. Players are often required to make morally grey decisions at best, and sometimes the best decision to accomplish their goals would be an evil one.

In the end, the party doesn’t even end the large evil, they just prevent a possibly worse evil from happening. This, combined with the grimdark tone, could be a major turnoff to a lot of players who prefer to feel more heroic.
 

I've got it and will likely be running it as a play by post campaign later this year. My biggest issue with it is how deeply Midgard is woven into it. I get that Kobold Press has a fanbase that's really invested in the setting, but if you're intending to use the campaign with another world, be prepared to do some work. (I've found a spot to stick a creepy vampire kingdom in my world, which actually works out well, but I can imagine many settings won't be so flexible.)
 

In the end, the party doesn’t even end the large evil, they just prevent a possibly worse evil from happening. This, combined with the grimdark tone, could be a major turnoff to a lot of players who prefer to feel more heroic.
Yeah, I'm running it as a side campaign to my more heroic one. I do pretty well when I run horror games, if I do say so myself, but spending a year or more (elongated due to pbp) with my face in that sort of grimness would be a lot for me otherwise.
 

RichGreen

Explorer
Hi there,

I’m the lead designer on Empire of the Ghouls and very happy to answer any questions any of you might have. I’m obviously biased but my campaign is 23 sessions in (we’re on Chapter 4) and we’re having a blast!

I‘ve been posting write ups from my campaign on my game design blog - hopefully they’ll give you an idea of what the adventure is like. You can download a campaign brief to give to your players here.

Cheers!
 

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