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D&D 5E New D&D Hardcover To Be Announced On The 23rd (Tomorrow)?

According to this page on Amazon.com, a new Dungeon & Dragons hardcover title for May will be announced tomorrow. Users in the US see the product below (those in the UK are seeing a Wizkids miniatures set instead).

So far signs look like Ravenloft, but we’ll know for sure tomorrow.

[Update -- also mentioned by Todd Kendrick, recently of D&D Beyond].

WotC has posted the below animation, which says “The Mist Beckons”.



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It depends on the campaign and player buy-in, I suppose. I’ve run games where the premise was that the characters were primarily self-interested and motivated by personal gain, and I’ve run games where the premise was that the characters were heroes, saving people/villages/maybe eventually the world with little expectation of reward. Usually I run games somewhere in-between. One thing I like about Curse of Strahd is that the personal gain motive and the heroic motive overlap - whether you want to escape Barovia or save it from its evil master, either way you’ve got to find the relics and use them to kill Strahd. It pretty much works as long as the players don’t want to replace Strahd as all-powerful dictator for eternity.
what happens if they do want to be strahd?
 

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Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
what happens if they do want to be strahd?
It just leaves them with little to no incentive to get involved in any of the side-quests, or to care about any of the characters. So, they mostly end up murderhoboing their way across Barovia until they get to the Amber Temple, accept the Dark Gifts of every single vestige, turning them into cartoonish monstrosities, then go kill Strahd and declare themselves the new evil overlords of Barovia.

Now, I’m cool with replacing Strahd being a possible outcome of the adventure. I just think it should be the “bad ending.” Something the party wants to avoid, not to strive for.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
what happens if they do want to be strahd?
It's toughto become a darklord but not impossible.
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Strahd is the darklord (not capitalized unless start of sentence) of Barovia and is very much a prisoner/victim of the Dark Powers (always capitalized). Become a better victim or plan the setup for your PC exiting from a playable state with your GM is the best bet. The Dark Powers are like the reason players say "never say the word wish unless you are using one" without the need to say the word... Consider them the embodiment of the darkest blackest pit of evil in your GM's soul but always eager to twist reality towards the goal of making you bite your fist in worry :). Somewhere in that same book* I pulled those from it talks about the gm altering monster statblocks during a fight to raise tension to reflect their influence in events.



*if not another ravenloft book
 

Dire Bare

Legend
Supporter
I've never known a hunch like that be wrong.
I've played with groups like that. When I was in middle school. I avoid the murder-hobo aesthetic hard now, I'd rather not play at all then play with adults who'd fireball a group of farmers on the possibility they are . . . something sinister and dangerous. But it's definitely not an uncommon playstyle for D&D.

My biggest regret as an adult running D&D games was the overuse of mimics in a campaign . . . in a dungeon, my players would first clear a room SWAT style of any obvious monsters, and then take the time to smash to bits all the furniture, tear up the rugs . . . . ANYTHING COULD BE A MONSTER! DESTROY IT ALL! Even then, they were waiting for the floor or ceiling to come alive and try to eat them . . . . I think they were over-reacting a bit, but I did attack them with bushes (twig blights) and other innocuous objects throughout that campaign, until I realized I'd made them paranoid, and by then it was too late . . .
 

None of that new "nuanced" claim bares even a vague resemblance to the claims you made earlier. I find it far more compelling, but it would have been a heck of a lot more appreciated if you had started there rather than with the claims of certainty that everyone was wrong for daring to imply your prior extreme claim was anything but pure and accurate.
I don't see much daylight between that and what I said earlier - you seem to be trying to imply that somehow between the periods we have better evidence for, i.e. the classical era and the middle ages, there was some secret mass persecution, which no-one remembers, there's no evidence of, and which didn't continue into the middle ages. That's a pretty wacky/wild thing to be going with. And to even get there I think rather you interpreted what I said in the most ungenerous way possible.

So googling, as you suggest, says you plagiarized from wikipedia - why they heck didn't you just link wikipedia? I thought at least I'd find it was from a book that wasn't online. And that's what quoting from a source, whilst both not linking the source, and not saying it's quote is, by the way - weirdly unnecessary plagiarism. Even if you rephrase it, it's not, but you didn't even do that!

What's more, the claims you're linking to on Wikipedia both have [citation needed] on them for god's sake! So your "good sources" are nothing of the sort! You have no sources! Good lord! So you literally lied about "good sources" and plagiarized at this point! Mind = blown as they say. I did not expect that. Did you just think I wouldn't check after you told me to google them? As neither claim has any kind of source, It's just junk some dude randomly wrote on wikipedia, and due to to be removed or replaced eventually. I mean, I'm assuming you didn't put them on wikipedia, here, because that seems like hard work for an internet argument with an idiot like me.

Here's the actual article btw, which paints a more complex picture (er, despite the hilariously lurid illustration), especially when we ignore the unsourced claims.


You can see how the problem like really only becomes big as we get the idea of the diabolic pact, and it isn't until the end of the middle ages that anti-witch stuff really kicks off big-time.
 


Mistwell

Legend
I don't see much daylight between that and what I said earlier - you seem to be trying to imply that somehow between the periods we have better evidence for, i.e. the classical era and the middle ages, there was some secret mass persecution, which no-one remembers, there's no evidence of, and which didn't continue into the middle ages. That's a pretty wacky/wild thing to be going with. And to even get there I think rather you interpreted what I said in the most ungenerous way possible.

So googling, as you suggest, says you plagiarized from wikipedia - why they heck didn't you just link wikipedia? I thought at least I'd find it was from a book that wasn't online. And that's what quoting from a source, whilst both not linking the source, and not saying it's quote is, by the way - weirdly unnecessary plagiarism. Even if you rephrase it, it's not, but you didn't even do that!

What's more, the claims you're linking to on Wikipedia both have [citation needed] on them for god's sake! So your "good sources" are nothing of the sort! You have no sources! Good lord! So you literally lied about "good sources" and plagiarized at this point! Mind = blown as they say. I did not expect that. Did you just think I wouldn't check after you told me to google them? As neither claim has any kind of source, It's just junk some dude randomly wrote on wikipedia, and due to to be removed or replaced eventually. I mean, I'm assuming you didn't put them on wikipedia, here, because that seems like hard work for an internet argument with an idiot like me.

Here's the actual article btw, which paints a more complex picture (er, despite the hilariously lurid illustration), especially when we ignore the unsourced claims.


You can see how the problem like really only becomes big as we get the idea of the diabolic pact, and it isn't until the end of the middle ages that anti-witch stuff really kicks off big-time.
I plagiarized? After telling you I had copied it from a source and you should Google it if you wanted to see what that source was, and that I didn't link because we were not at that stage where you were providing support anyway, you're accusing me in that context of plagiarizing?

Done now. Life is too difficult to deal with bad humans like yourself. First you made a bald face exaggerated claim in a situation where you knew it was exaggerated and unnecessary to do that, then you accused me of plagiarism for providing support and telling you it was copied (and I see later you accused me of lying)...done. You're not a good person, Ruin Explorer. You make other people's lives worse to protect your self view, and that's something nobody needs to deal with.
 

JEB

Adventurer
To be honest, I don't even know to what degree WotC are even allowed to use the Arthaus material, from a rights point of view...
Some of the material is on the DM Guild with "Wizards of the Coast" as publisher, so I assume they have the rights to it. Whether or not it's "canon" is less clear. (In fact, this became a debate on the D&D Lore Wiki between me and another editor; I even asked Jeremy Crawford about it on Twitter, but never got a response.)
 

Remathilis

Legend
Some of the material is on the DM Guild with "Wizards of the Coast" as publisher, so I assume they have the rights to it. Whether or not it's "canon" is less clear. (In fact, this became a debate on the D&D Lore Wiki between me and another editor; I even asked Jeremy Crawford about it on Twitter, but never got a response.)
I wager this Ravenloft is going to dispense with a lot of the old metaplot. I mean, it's written by Van Richten, who canonically is gone following the events of Bleak House. I wager they won't be any reference to the Time of Unparalleled Darkness, the Requiem, or even the Grand Conjunction going forward.
 

JEB

Adventurer
I wager this Ravenloft is going to dispense with a lot of the old metaplot. I mean, it's written by Van Richten, who canonically is gone following the events of Bleak House. I wager they won't be any reference to the Time of Unparalleled Darkness, the Requiem, or even the Grand Conjunction going forward.
It had been established that the Mists can do funny things with time, though, so it would be easy for Curse of Strahd to have been set in Ravenloft's past, before Van Richten was gone (or any other events in 2E/3E Ravenloft). That's certainly what I would assume in my campaign, too.

But you're probably correct that this will be something of a reboot. All the easier to fix issues that way, too.
 

Faolyn

Hero
It's not quite the same as previous setting books, as those didn't have an equivalent section comparable to this one's "run your own gothic horror games" section.
It'd be interesting to see if they do a Dark Sun book with a "run your own post-apocalypse game" section or a Spelljammer game with a "run your own weird science fantasy game" section. Not that SJ is true science fantasy, but you know what I mean.
 

Faolyn

Hero
It had been established that the Mists can do funny things with time, though, so it would be easy for Curse of Strahd to have been set in Ravenloft's past, before Van Richten was gone (or any other events in 2E/3E Ravenloft). That's certainly what I would assume in my campaign, too.

But you're probably correct that this will be something of a reboot. All the easier to fix issues that way, too.
Plus, he's a writer, so this could be just one of his old manuscripts, published posthumously by Esmerelda or by (ugh) the Foxgrove-Weathermay twins.

Assuming it's not a reboot or a complete rewrite, of course.
 

Parmandur

Legend
It's not quite the same as previous setting books, as those didn't have an equivalent section comparable to this one's "run your own gothic horror games" section.

Au contraire, all of Ravnica, Eberron and Theros had extensive similar advice for Urban Fantasy, Pulp Fantasy, and Mythical Heroic campaigns. Possibly more than Ravenloft will have for Gothic Horror, frankly.
 


Rikka66

Explorer
It'd be interesting to see if they do a Dark Sun book with a "run your own post-apocalypse game" section or a Spelljammer game with a "run your own weird science fantasy game" section. Not that SJ is true science fantasy, but you know what I mean.

Dark Sun will have something about running desert or more hardcore survival adventures, I reckon. Spelljammer tips about space travel or something. But neither setting is as broad with their genres (which is really sword and sandals for Dark Sun, though I get where you're coming from with the post-apocalypse thing) as all the Domains of Dread are with gothic horror.
 

Faolyn

Hero
I don’t really understand the Ravenloft hate. Gothic Horror is the gift that keeps on giving. It has a massive backlog of tropes, references, movies, literature, and music. In short it’s exactly what D&D likes best... a massive body of collective conscious it can mine for familiar roleplaying game experiences.
There are people who think--and not without good reasons--that it's hard or impossible to run good horror in D&D, because D&D characters are so powerful. I haven't had a hard time personally, but I seem to have a knack for horror.

It might also be because 3x Ravenloft didn't really introduce much new--it just expanded upon what already existed. I know that as much as I love Ravenloft, and as much as I love the way S&S made the place come alive, I also don't need Yet Another description of each of the domains, and I wouldn't be surprised if this was a major issue with others. I'm glad that this version is including PC stuff, monsters, and new rules all in one book, because it means it won't just be the domains.
 


Faolyn

Hero
From the D&D site's description (thanks for the link, @JEB): Includes rules and advice for building custom domains and Darklords using established horror tropes or your own special blend.

Now that they took Ravenloft out of the Ethereal and plunked it down in the Shadowfell, I wonder if they're doing away with the whole Core/Clusters/Islands thing altogether--if they're just turning each domain into a site within the Shadowfell. An "Oasis of Horror," if you will.
 

From the D&D site's description (thanks for the link, @JEB): Includes rules and advice for building custom domains and Darklords using established horror tropes or your own special blend.

Now that they took Ravenloft out of the Ethereal and plunked it down in the Shadowfell, I wonder if they're doing away with the whole Core/Clusters/Islands thing altogether--if they're just turning each domain into a site within the Shadowfell. An "Oasis of Horror," if you will.
did they not retcon that back after 4e?
 

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