• The VOIDRUNNER'S CODEX is LIVE! Explore new worlds, fight oppressive empires, fend off fearsome aliens, and wield deadly psionics with this comprehensive boxed set expansion for 5E and A5E!

D&D 5E Favourite One-shots Scenarios for DnD


Duncan T
What are your favourite DnD (5E and other) one-shot adventures and scenarios?

Are low-level adventures can be completed in a single (longish) session?

I´ve often favoured running something like Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh with random 1st level characters with old school 3d6 generation (I recently did some random tables for 5E)
I´ve also run one-shots where the players are all trolls or low level but possessed by creatures like beholders, demons and dragons!

So let´s hear your recommendations and experiences!

log in or register to remove this ad


The infamously deadly classics that are S1 and I6 - I've run S1 twice using pre-gen characters kitted out to give them a glimmer of a chance (haha, as if they really stood any chance at all :p) - and we did I6 for Hallowe'en, again using pre-gens. The players turned up dressed as their characters, I dressed as Strahd, we had lots of wine and takeaway curry and it was fantastic. Again they all died.


A group I ran had a lot of fun with the playtest version of Mines of Madness (although it ended up taking about 12 hours to play through - but I used it more as a mini-campaign than a one shot - and I adjusted it to make it a tad less lethal - allowing any blood on the alter to gain access to the crypts beyond rather than a full out sacrifice).


I always liked one-shots that were high level or tied to the current campaign somehow. My group generally plays levels 1-10ish before things start to slow down and we start again. A one-shot is like a convention where you make the most of right now. If I tell the group to bring in 18th level characters for only one night, they all know to expect things that are a bit more fantastic, like fighting a devil or the tarrasque.

Another one-shot I have used ties in with my current campaign somehow. Say, a new, or old, member shows up, or cannot show up, for one week and the regular group cannot be all together. I have made an adventure that foreshadows events for the main group. One time I handed the players a character who all belonged to the town watch, only to have an undead horde attack and kill everyone. I planned a TPK for these helpless soldiers but one managed to disguise himself in the final moments. When the regular party came upon the town the next time we played they found the survivor and I had the players already invested in stopping the horde.


For one shots, I mostly enjoy a standard underground dungeon crawl, mapping out the dungeon areas and looking for treasure, but with a specific end goal in mind. I typically create my own dungeon for something like this and then stock the areas old school style with monsters and traps, and have some type of object or area that needs to be discovered to exit the dungeon. The basic dungeon exploration scenario is still my favorite by far. For my personal tastes, a lot of the current Adventure Paths, while fun, have too many overland sections. I do like the Adventure Paths, but those overland parts just aren't my personal favorite environments for play.

Voidrunner's Codex

Remove ads