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EPIC5-2 Dragons Dark (Free L28 Adventure)

keterys

First Post
EPIC5-2 Dragons Dark is available for download on livingforgottenrealms.com!

It is highly suggested that players experience EPIC5-1 (and the rest of the series!) before playing this adventure.

EPIC5-2 Dragons Dark by Gary Mattingly, Keith Richmond, Krishna Simonse
Dragons wreak destruction and mayhem in the grip of a new Rage of Dragons, gathering sacrifices for a dark apocalypse. Death spreads its wings and casts its shadow over Faerûn, harvesting souls from entire cities and nations, and only the greatest heroes can stop it. A three-round Living Forgotten Realms adventure set in Faerûn for 28th level characters. This adventure is a direct sequel to EPIC5-1 Plaguewrought Prism.


This is the eighth in a series of free adventures:
EPIC3-1 The Glorious Hunt
EPIC3-2 Cracks in the Crimson Cage
EPIC3-3 Tangled Skein of Destiny
EPIC4-1 Shooting the Moon
EPIC4-2 Age of Ruin
EPIC4-3 Dark Hearts of Madness
EPIC5-1 Plaguewrought Prism

As always, I'm happy to answer any questions anyone might have about the adventure. I encourage folks to use it even outside of LFR as a mine for ideas, encounters, stat blocks, or whatever. We do a lot of new and interesting things in every epic and it's a free download, so pillage away and have some fun.

Miniature-wise, I apologize in advance to convention DMs. For home groups, if you've got dragon minis, you'll get to use them. All. Haven't had a table yet where someone hasn't taken pics due to some of the craziness, too.
 

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Pour

First Post
Just finished reading through the adventure. I know I post the same message for each of these, but bravo! This is the kind of serious Epic support I look for. I just love the number of Epic dragon monsters and hazards. Seriously, value of this adventure for any DM running Epic is huge. I have six Epic sessions left on my campaign and with a little retooling I know I'll be using some of these stat blocks.
 


keterys

First Post
[MENTION=59411]Pour[/MENTION] Thanks for the praise!

It's sometimes hard to believe that LFR's Epic adventures are free. :)
I'll admit, I occasionally wonder if I could have taken the time spent on Epic and kickstarted my own game, or gotten a gig writing for 13th age, or any number of things that might have resulted in actual money. I've largely found that the pay isn't that much, and it's a lot more about the pleasure in creating something and having others enjoy it, so Free gets a lot more folks enjoying it.

It's been time well spent on an area of the game where there was so much glorious unexplored room to play around :) Maybe someday it'll even create some opportunities for me. Who knows: focusing on the last two adventures first. Look for 5-3 in an October time frame and 6-1 (the conclusion) at Winter Fantasy in January, presumably released to the website in early February.
 
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Scrivener of Doom

Adventurer
Two things stand out to me from these Epic adventures, other than the sheer quality, of course:

1. 4E still has a lot of untapped potential.
2. The 4E version of FR still has a lot of untapped potential.

WotC left a lot on the table, as it were, when they killed 4E. With a bit of imagination, creativity and leadership I reckon they could have squeezed two more good years out of it. Oh well.
 

keterys

First Post
I think Epic could have really used a support book (3rd DMG or whatever) - definitely a monster manual, or support equivalent to one. That said, I can understand if they do the #s and, say, 75% of play is Heroic, 23% Paragon, 2% Epic - or whatever they happen to be - and it doesn't justify.
 

Scrivener of Doom

Adventurer
The thing is, WotC's Epic adventures were complete crap and didn't exactly suggest that Epic was anything other than a dungeon with bigger numbers. Then again, I often argue - actually, make that "assert" as I have nothing other than anecdotal evidence to support what I say - that 4E failed because Keep on the Shadowfell and (the truly, unforgivably execrable) Pyramid of Shadows were complete crap. It was as if most of the HPE series was designed to showcase the worst parts of 4E rather than doing what the later LFR adventures and various posts here and on certain blogs have done in terms of highlighting how good 4E can be.

TL;DR: The LFR adventures show that Epic is more than just a dungeon with bigger numbers. It's a shame WotC never did that.
 

keterys

First Post
Fair enough. I think they spent a lot of time trying to show that 4e could do "old classic style dnd" when they should have instead shown how it can do action style extravaganzas and movies. More Indiana Jones style delving. Like, Pyramid of Shadows could have had an encounter like the first one in SPEC1-3 H3 for LFR, where a trap is triggered and a boulder is rolling down the passageway while the PCs need to get past monsters and other traps.
 

Scrivener of Doom

Adventurer
Yeah, for me 4E is cinematic. That's its real strength, IMO. And I think the LFR Epic adventures do a great job of that - I mean, look at all the dragons in the latest one! :)
 

Pour

First Post
We say this all the time, but I don't think the designers ever fully understood 4e, certainly not with the H series. And I seriously question if they even do now, save for a select few guys, mainly freelancers. I say this because most of the awesome 4e stuff I've seen was completely independent of WotC, either LFR, fourthcore, DiasX, these forums, or on the blogs. In that regard, I feel pretty good about 4e's future. The edition's souls really never was with the official adventure support, was it?
 

The main thing about 4e that I've found over the years is that my experience with it is the inverse of my experience of all prior editions. The more I expose myself to it and the more I conceptualize and theorycraft, the more I'm then able to push the system and use its various tools in unique ways that stand up to both my deeper scrutiny and actual play experience...and I'm able to do this with greater and greater efficacy as time wears on. Of course this is due to the tightness and transparency of the math and the coherency of its exception and scene based design schemes; which generally inhibits the gross, debilitating, unforseeable 2nd and 3rd order interactions that come with design that is indifferent to math and how resources play out from a pacing/micro-scene perspective.
 


Pour

First Post
How's 5-3 and 6-1 coming along [MENTION=43019]keterys[/MENTION] ? Really can't wait to get my hands on them.
 

keterys

First Post
5-3 is quite far along; I've no doubt it would have been out if not for a variety of real life events all over the team.

6-1 has an outline and a lot of ideas, but won't get written until Thanksgiving, playtested over December, and premier at the end of January at DDXP, probably posted to the site February.
 

Pour

First Post
This is great news. Any chance of a prospective release date for 5-3? Or some sort of teaser, at least?
 

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