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D&D 5E My Five Favorite Things From The Wild Beyond The Witchlight

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This month begins one of the busiest periods in the history of Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition. We’re getting three months of back to back to back releases, starting with The Wild Beyond The Witchlight, an adventure path that takes players to the Feywild and back via the spooky Witchlight Carnival. I got my hands on an advanced copy of the book and here are the five things I liked most about it.

Fresh Ideas​

We’re in the seventh year of this edition and we’re only starting to look forward to what this edition can be. There’s a definite sense of whimsy and weirdness in this adventure that makes it unique. And it’s also supported by encounters that can be handled through cleverness instead of combat. The Feywild setting also feels fresh and open. Even though exploration has been one of the pillars of this edition, it hasn’t gotten a ton of support. Prismeer feels like a strange place to discover. The Domains of Delight that mirror the Domains of Dread offer something new in an edition that’s been playing it safe for years.

The DM Support​

The campaign is sandwiched in between two excellent examples of practical support for Dungeon Masters. There’s a DM advice section with a lot of helpful ideas in the front and the last appendix is 20 pages of NPC summaries, character quotes and a place for Dungeon Masters to take campaign notes. I appreciate the fact that this book isn’t wall to wall facts. This rockets to the top of my list recommending what campaign for first time Dungeon Masters because of those elements. Even if you’re an old hat, it might also not hurt to read those sections. You might learn a new trick or two.

The Displacer Beast Kitten​

There are a lot of notable NPCs in the game, but players are suckers for a pet. Star is a baby displacer beast that can be reunited with its mom or can accompany the players on their adventures through the Feywild. It reminds me of the displacer beast plushie I got from GameHole Con, which I completely plan to use as a prop when I run this adventure. The unusual NPCs give this adventure more of a Jim Henson feel. I can see it being a good choice for parents looking to run D&D for their kids for the first time.

The Clocks​

The included map has two sections where you can track important elements of the Witchlight Carnival using beads or tokens. (I can only imagine what wild things the Beadle and Grimm’s edition will have.) One is a countdown of the events that happen outside of player action. They will be going on rides and playing arrival games as day slips into night and the adventure moves forward. The other is the mood of the carnival which is directly affected by player actions. Do good things and the carnival gets lighter and more exciting. Fail too often, and the carnival gets darker and more menacing. Player facing countdowns and clocks are a great thing for D&D to import from games like Blades In The Dark.

The Portability​

The reason that most adventure books are set in the Forgotten Realms is because it’s supposedly D&D’s most popular setting. It’s also fairly easy for most Dungeon Masters to import into their homebrewed worlds. The carnival and Feywild realm beyond is built to exist on the edge of any setting making this one of the easiest campaigns to integrate with any of the worlds people use. For example, I’m entertaining the idea of running Strixhaven after my current Curse of Strahd game wraps up and I think dropping the Witchlight Carnival on the school grounds halfway through the players educational term sounds like a fun diversion from term papers and scroll lessons.

The Wild Beyond The Witchlight comes out on September 21st.
 

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Rob Wieland

Rob Wieland



Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
Hmm. I was looking forward to this one already, but now I think I'm actually excited. It sounds like they directly address a few of my quibbles with 5e and its releases, head-on.
 


View attachment 143747

This month begins one of the busiest periods in the history of Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition. We’re getting three months of back to back to back releases, starting with The Wild Beyond The Witchlight, an adventure path that takes players to the Feywild and back via the spooky Witchlight Carnival. I got my hands on an advanced copy of the book and here are the five things I liked most about it.

Fresh Ideas​

We’re in the seventh year of this edition and we’re only starting to look forward to what this edition can be. There’s a definite sense of whimsy and weirdness in this adventure that makes it unique. And it’s also supported by encounters that can be handled through cleverness instead of combat. The Feywild setting also feels fresh and open. Even though exploration has been one of the pillars of this edition, it hasn’t gotten a ton of support. Prismeer feels like a strange place to discover. The Domains of Delight that mirror the Domains of Dread offer something new in an edition that’s been playing it safe for years.

The DM Support​

The campaign is sandwiched in between two excellent examples of practical support for Dungeon Masters. There’s a DM advice section with a lot of helpful ideas in the front and the last appendix is 20 pages of NPC summaries, character quotes and a place for Dungeon Masters to take campaign notes. I appreciate the fact that this book isn’t wall to wall facts. This rockets to the top of my list recommending what campaign for first time Dungeon Masters because of those elements. Even if you’re an old hat, it might also not hurt to read those sections. You might learn a new trick or two.

The Displacer Beast Kitten​

There are a lot of notable NPCs in the game, but players are suckers for a pet. Star is a baby displacer beast that can be reunited with its mom or can accompany the players on their adventures through the Feywild. It reminds me of the displacer beast plushie I got from GameHole Con, which I completely plan to use as a prop when I run this adventure. The unusual NPCs give this adventure more of a Jim Henson feel. I can see it being a good choice for parents looking to run D&D for their kids for the first time.

The Clocks​

The included map has two sections where you can track important elements of the Witchlight Carnival using beads or tokens. (I can only imagine what wild things the Beadle and Grimm’s edition will have.) One is a countdown of the events that happen outside of player action. They will be going on rides and playing arrival games as day slips into night and the adventure moves forward. The other is the mood of the carnival which is directly affected by player actions. Do good things and the carnival gets lighter and more exciting. Fail too often, and the carnival gets darker and more menacing. Player facing countdowns and clocks are a great thing for D&D to import from games like Blades In The Dark.

The Portability​

The reason that most adventure books are set in the Forgotten Realms is because it’s supposedly D&D’s most popular setting. It’s also fairly easy for most Dungeon Masters to import into their homebrewed worlds. The carnival and Feywild realm beyond is built to exist on the edge of any setting making this one of the easiest campaigns to integrate with any of the worlds people use. For example, I’m entertaining the idea of running Strixhaven after my current Curse of Strahd game wraps up and I think dropping the Witchlight Carnival on the school grounds halfway through the players educational term sounds like a fun diversion from term papers and scroll lessons.

The Wild Beyond The Witchlight comes out on September 21st.
Is there anything you dislike about the book or wish they had included?
 

TheBanjoNerd

Gelatinous Dungeon Master
I just want, at some point while the PCs are otherwise occupied during the carnival, for a group of kids to wander past and exclaim "Oh, wow - a Dungeons and Dragons ride!"

And then you never see them again.
Given how much attention Wizards have been giving the cartoon as well as the older toy characters (Warduke, being the prime example) I wonder if a cameo of those characters is already in the book?
 




Dragonsbane

Proud Grognard
Not my cup of tea as you all said. I will always prefer LotR over FairyTale, but D&D is marketed for very young kids these days, enjoy!
 


Not my cup of tea as you all said. I will always prefer LotR over FairyTale, but D&D is marketed for very young kids these days, enjoy!
One could go for a "dark fairy tale" vibe, but given that the feywild is supposed to be the opposite of the shadowfell, and that last year's adventure was icy horror themed, it seemed like they wanted to do something more light hearted. I think this will stream well, fwiw...
 

Dire Bare

Legend
D&D is marketed for very young kids these days, enjoy!
Factually untrue.

Actual fact, some earlier editions were more heavily marketed to the kid crowd than 5th Edition.

This adventure includes strange and whimsy, hardly the sole domain of children. It includes callbacks to a children's line of toys . . . and all of those kids are now in their late 40s or 50s.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I hate the Feywild (and have since its invention, and by extension the Shadowfell as well) and a whimsical carnival all sounds terrible to me.

That being said, I will be buying this because Warduke.
I promise it's more satisfying to just enjoy fun, than it is to hate things that have no impact on your actual life.
but D&D is marketed for very young kids these days, enjoy!
What's age got to do with it? I preferred LOTR over Fairy Tales when I was a kid, and have gained appreciation of fairy tales as I've grown up and over the need to seem grown up.
I don't agree with that last part at all, but I don't want to derail the thread. Faerie and whimsy is about tone, not age.
Exactly.
 


ART!

Hero
the feywild is supposed to be the opposite of the shadowfell
This is a comparison I have not come across before, so maybe I just haven't read or have forgotten some basic piece of text in one of the core books. Where is this established, and can you (or someone) elaborate on the comparison, please? Thanks.
 



Scribe

Hero
This is a comparison I have not come across before, so maybe I just haven't read or have forgotten some basic piece of text in one of the core books. Where is this established, and can you (or someone) elaborate on the comparison, please? Thanks.
The 3 (Fey, Shadow, Prime) are all close, with Fey and Shadow standing opposite.

Hmm, now that I'm looking I cannot find it, but I do believe I remember reading them as opposites. 4e lore maybe?
 

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