D&D 5E Odyssey of the Dragonlords’ - my next campaign?

ccs

41st lv DM
Ah, it's finally that time. Or very nearly so..... The end of the current campaign is finally upon us!
Wich triggered the usual survey of the group - What do you want next?

Of the responses, I got two concerning the actual overall campaign.
1 player wants a pirate campaign. If we go that route, no problem. I've still got my Skull & Shackles binder/notes/prep from years ago.
A 2nd player said "something based on Greek myth". Hmm. That I don't really have anything for beyond general knowledge + standard D&D resources....
Fortunately I've got about two months to read/create while another player runs something for a bit.

So talk to me about Odyssey of the Dragonlords’.
I've heard of this, but never read it.
*Is it one campaign/AP like the WoTC/PF stuff? Or just the setting book? What kind of work am I looking at?
*How well does it do the Greek theme it's inspired by?
*Looking at it's map, there's alot of ocean/islands. Are there any real ship based sequences?
*I've heard it's got its' own Pantheon. How integral is that? vs say, plugging in the actual Greek gods?
*If anyones played this, was it FUN? Good/bad/etc parts?
 

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Retreater

Legend
I'm at the in-laws today, but I have the hardcover at my house. I'll try to take a look at it tomorrow and get some specific answers to you. Commenting here to remind me. :)
 

vilainn6

Explorer
Ah, it's finally that time. Or very nearly so..... The end of the current campaign is finally upon us!
Wich triggered the usual survey of the group - What do you want next?

Of the responses, I got two concerning the actual overall campaign.
1 player wants a pirate campaign. If we go that route, no problem. I've still got my Skull & Shackles binder/notes/prep from years ago.
A 2nd player said "something based on Greek myth". Hmm. That I don't really have anything for beyond general knowledge + standard D&D resources....
Fortunately I've got about two months to read/create while another player runs something for a bit.

So talk to me about Odyssey of the Dragonlords’.
I've heard of this, but never read it.
*Is it one campaign/AP like the WoTC/PF stuff? Or just the setting book? What kind of work am I looking at?
*How well does it do the Greek theme it's inspired by?
*Looking at it's map, there's alot of ocean/islands. Are there any real ship based sequences?
*I've heard it's got its' own Pantheon. How integral is that? vs say, plugging in the actual Greek gods?
*If anyones played this, was it FUN? Good/bad/etc parts?
  • It is a campaing that can go level 1-20 if you run all the book. It's also a setting inspired by greece with Medusa, centaur, satyr, gods, titans, cyclop, curses, oaths etc.
  • I am not an expert but I think they respect the theme if you do abstraction of the dragon riders.
  • Characters travel to a lot of place but there isn't ship sequences like in a pirate game.
  • Very integral.
  • I haven't run it so I won't comment but I remember reviews complaining about encounter balance and too much railroad.
 


dave2008

Legend
Ah, it's finally that time. Or very nearly so..... The end of the current campaign is finally upon us!
Wich triggered the usual survey of the group - What do you want next?

Of the responses, I got two concerning the actual overall campaign.
1 player wants a pirate campaign. If we go that route, no problem. I've still got my Skull & Shackles binder/notes/prep from years ago.
A 2nd player said "something based on Greek myth". Hmm. That I don't really have anything for beyond general knowledge + standard D&D resources....
Fortunately I've got about two months to read/create while another player runs something for a bit.

So talk to me about Odyssey of the Dragonlords’.
I've heard of this, but never read it.
*Is it one campaign/AP like the WoTC/PF stuff? Or just the setting book? What kind of work am I looking at?
*How well does it do the Greek theme it's inspired by?
*Looking at it's map, there's alot of ocean/islands. Are there any real ship based sequences?
*I've heard it's got its' own Pantheon. How integral is that? vs say, plugging in the actual Greek gods?
*If anyones played this, was it FUN? Good/bad/etc parts?
I have the PDF and I have skimmed it and read a bit about it, but I have not run it. Personally I think mixing Dragonlords and Theros will give a better "Mythic Greece" flavor. I got more general ancient greece feel from Theros and how PC can interact with their gods (through champions & piety and supernatural gifts) than I did from DragonLords. However, Dragonlords has more player content that could be helpful (classes). Of course my favorite thing about Theros is mythic monsters which were something 5e sorely needed.

One bonus for OotDL is it includes a complete l-20 adventure. It seemed a bit railroady to me, but I really just glanced at it. I have heard the first half is better than the second half. Evidently it was originally written as a shorter adventure and then it was expanded because of Kickstarter stretch goals and maybe those stretched adventures are not as good?

PS - is fairly easy to reflavor the Theros gods as Greek gods. I don't remember it being quite so explicit in Dragonlords.
 

BloopDS

Villager
I've been wanting to run it myself one day! Alas, my group has the unusual problem of too many DMs, so I'll have to wait a while for my turn...
*Is it one campaign/AP like the WoTC/PF stuff? Or just the setting book? What kind of work am I looking at?


The main feature of the book is its one long campaign, which goes from levels 1-20 (though there's a perfectly good climax and stopping point around level 12). There's a lot of setting information available as well, though. There's a free player's guide that includes a fair chunk of the setting here: Odyssey of the Dragonlords: Player's Guide - Modiphius | Free Products | RPG Quickstarts | Odyssey of the Dragonlords | DriveThruRPG.com


*Looking at it's map, there's alot of ocean/islands. Are there any real ship based sequences?
About 2 or 3 chapters of the adventure take place sailing from island to island, ala the argonauts. However, from what I remember, the ship is mostly used as a means of transportation, and all the actual adventuring takes place on the islands.

*I've heard it's got its' own Pantheon. How integral is that? vs say, plugging in the actual Greek gods?
The gods are very integral to the story. The central conflict is based around them and a mystery involving them. If you end up running the adventure path itself, plugging in the actual Greek gods might end up being a significant amount of work.

I can't answer the fun part as I haven't run it, but there's a large discord community for Dragonlords and I'm sure they'd be able to answer any questions you have (or see if someone else has asked them!) Join the Odyssey of the Dragonlords Discord Server!
 

dave2008

Legend

I complete forgot about the free player's guide! Thank you for the reminder!

@ccs, if I was running my own adventure / campaign I would use Theros and grab the free player's guide for Dragonlords. If I remember correctly it has the player classes in it, which is the primary thing I would want to add to Theros.

If you need an adventure, that might sway me to buy the Dragonlords.
 

TheSword

Legend
I’ve started Odyssey. It is excellent, far more engaging than Theros. I have both products.

A couple of things that I found particularly good.

- The heroes have epic backgrounds that propel them through the story. The backgrounds are tied to the main quest but vary a great deal.

- The Pantheon is both integral and visible. You are interacting with the gods as NPCs substantially... and I mean substantially.

- The world is d&d based but it’s still very Greek in style.

- There are damned cool locations, both early on and throughout the campaign. The maps are colour VTT quality too.

- The Island exploration that makes up the middle third is very sand boxy. If you like assassins creed Odyssey then you’ll get the picture. The islands are really small adventures. Homer would be proud.

- The Greek subclasses are great. One for every class and really well done.

- There is a substantial Greek bestiary that is done well and covers a lot of ground.

- levels 1-17 with an option to take it to 20. It’s a pleasure to reads. The last 3 levels is kinda like a sequel. Not quite as good. Probably for a Kickstarter stretch goal but not bad.

I think the book is well worth getting. Even if you didn’t run it, it’s a lot of fun to read, has a lot of well written 5e supplementary material and good content. I’d go so far as to say it’s the best 3pp product I’ve bought bar none. Better quality even than Tales of the Old Margrave.
 

pukunui

Legend
I ran not quite half of it before we all got a bit burnt out on it.

It doesn’t quite stick to the Greek theme, the island-hopping on the ship bit is very hit-or-miss. I can’t speak to the second half, but a lot of it reads like what it is: stretch goals that needed more development. (Everything post-Battle of Mytros was originally going to be released separately but they decided to incorporate it all into te main book, which means the thing is massive and unfortunately the binding can’t quite handle the heft very well. Mine started to fall apart almost right away.)

As with the WotC 5e adventures, this one requires a ton of work on the part of the DM, not least because it was written by video game guys, so it can be a bit railroady at times.

Personally I wouldn’t recommend it.

Mythic Odysseys of Theros hits the mark with the Greek theme a lot better, in my opinion. The downside is it’s more of a setting than a pre-made campaign, so there’s a lot more DIY. I wish it had come out before I started running Odyssey as I think it may have helped make it more enjoyable.

The Greek theme in Odyssey of the Dragonlords basically just amounts to window dressing. I was very disappointed and couldn’t even bring myself to finish up with the encounter with Lutheria. We just left it hanging.

EDIT: Happy to write more if you’re interested (and when I’m not on my phone).
 
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dave2008

Legend
Well @ccs , did these two review help?!
(FYI: the are about polar opposites)
I’ve started Odyssey. It is excellent, far more engaging than Theros. I have both products.

A couple of things that I found particularly good.

- The heroes have epic backgrounds that propel them through the story. The backgrounds are tied to the main quest but vary a great deal.

- The Pantheon is both integral and visible. You are interacting with the gods as NPCs substantially... and I mean substantially.

- The world is d&d based but it’s still very Greek in style.

- There are damned cool locations, both early on and throughout the campaign. The maps are colour VTT quality too.

- The Island exploration that makes up the middle third is very sand boxy. If you like assassins creed Odyssey then you’ll get the picture. The islands are really small adventures. Homer would be proud.

- The Greek subclasses are great. One for every class and really well done.

- There is a substantial Greek bestiary that is done well and covers a lot of ground.

- levels 1-17 with an option to take it to 20. It’s a pleasure to reads. The last 3 levels is kinda like a sequel. Not quite as good. Probably for a Kickstarter stretch goal but not bad.

I think the book is well worth getting. Even if you didn’t run it, it’s a lot of fun to read, has a lot of well written 5e supplementary material and good content. I’d go so far as to say it’s the best 3pp product I’ve bought bar none. Better quality even than Tales of the Old Margrave.

I ran not quite half of it before we all got a bit burnt out on it.

It doesn’t quite stick to the Greek theme, the island-hopping on the ship bit is very hit-or-miss. I can’t speak to the second half, but a lot of it reads like what it is: stretch goals that needed more development. (Everything post-Battle of Mytros was originally going to be released separately but they decided to incorporate it all into te main book, which means the thing is massive and unfortunately the binding can’t quite handle the heft very well. Mine started to fall apart almost right away.)

As with the WotC 5e adventures, this one requires a ton of work on the part of the DM, not least because it was written by video game guys, so it can be a bit railroady at times.

Personally I wouldn’t recommend it.

Mythic Odysseys of Theros hits the mark with the Greek theme a lot better, in my opinion. The downside is it’s more of a setting than a pre-made campaign, so there’s a lot more DIY. I wish it had come out before I started running Odyssey as I think it may have helped make it more enjoyable.

The Greek theme in Odyssey of the Dragonlords basically just amounts to window dressing. I was very disappointed and couldn’t even bring myself to finish up with the encounter with Lutheria. We just left it hanging.
 

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