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D&D 5E Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft Table of Contents

As shared by DMs Guild brand manager Lysa Penrose.

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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
Everyone seems to be misreading this. It’s not the country of Cyre that got transported, it’s one train (lightning rail - train #1313), ala “Murder on the Orient Express”, “Snowpiercer” or “Train to Busan”.

"The Express Train to Hell"​

By, Retta M. Brown (born September 18, 1893)

Mod Edit: This poem, while perhaps thematically relevant, leans hard enough into religious commentary to have ruffled some feathers. Thus, it has been removed. Folks can look it up if they feel so inclined. ~Umbran
 
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Stormonu

Legend
One possibility is that the land is prone to drought, poor or diseased crops, locusts, etc., keeping the hunger aspect of the domain without making it into a forced starvation thing. Which I agree is stupid--at some point, your populace would simply be too weak to do anything to feed the demands of the god, even if the priesthood was really good at calculating caloric needs.

Another possibility is that the demand for food sacrifice has become a demand for human sacrifice. Which still could be by starvation, but that would only be for the individual sacrifices instead of for everyone.
I think it would be interesting if it was a seasonal thing - a summer of plenty (in which sacrifices are secretly made in the vain hopes of staving off what is to come, and reduce the number of competitors come winter) and a winter of extreme hardship situation. The populace gorges itself in a short time of plenty because they know when the “hard” season hits that despite their best-laid plans, famine will come (Rats break into the granary and eat/defoul everything, locusts wipe out the food crop before it can be harvested, a natural disaster wipes out the food warehouse, bandits steal the food, it rots unnaturally fast, etc.).

Could have some interesting adventures where the PCs encounter a food cache, and have to defend it against all attackers and distribute it to those in need.
 

Remathilis

Legend
So with the "other domains" section being less than a page per Domain, in guessing that most of them are going to be designed as DIY ideas for DMs to expand using the darklord rules rather than directly updating older domains. It also tells me they aren't changing much with those domains directly, unlike the featured domains. I would bet the adepts on DMsGuild will be fleshing out a few of them via that project.
 


I'm going to go out on a limb and say that limiting rests is a great way to ramp up the tension of any D&D horror scenario.
Putting them in a tube full of ravenous undead where there's no side rooms to hide out in and no way to get "out" without taking a fatal fall takes this beyond just a no-rest ordinary scenario.
 


vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
So you're saying it takes the normal tension of a no-rest scenario and ramps it up into horror. I'm not seeing the downside.
Agreed.

If it worked with the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan, it can work with a horror train without problem.

Getting a long rest would require an awful lot of work, but it may be possible: clear a wagon, hide, set traps, baits and decoys and wish for the best.
 


A Train to Busan scenario would be very, very intense and genuinely hard in D&D, since getting any rests would be difficult.
I mean, at first, in the beginning, rests would be normal. It's when you reach the mid point or near the end of the train adventure that resting starts becoming an issue. Especially if the PC's end up messing up and, only one room is left in the entire train that allows for any kind of "rest" at all.
 


overgeeked

B/X Known World
Agreed.

If it worked with the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan, it can work with a horror train without problem.
To be fair, the rules of AD&D are a bit different than the rules of 5E.
Getting a long rest would require an awful lot of work, but it may be possible: clear a wagon, hide, set traps, baits and decoys and wish for the best.
Or just cast Leomund's Tiny Hut (long rest). Rope Trick (short rest). Have a genie pact warlock (short or long or short in 10 minutes, depending on level). Or have a DM that uses the silly only one hour of fighting will break a long rest rule interpretation. Declare you're taking a long rest and start fighting. You have an hour of pure combat before breaking your rest. Either you live and can clear out a space to get the remainder of your long rest or you die trying.
 

Remathilis

Legend
To be fair, the rules of AD&D are a bit different than the rules of 5E.
The 5e version does 1d6 poison per hour and taking damage still prevents short/long rest. Even if you argue you could somehow rest though it, you're full hp would be reduced by 8d6 damage. Might be doable if your party is all dwarves, warforged, and green dragonborn...
 

ehren37

Adventurer
I can understand Kalidnay couldn't be published yet because Dark Sun as setting is not ready yet, but I don't like the return of G'Henna, the dread domain I most reject. Maybe you can tolerate some tropes in your game, but the ones from G'Henna have been used, and abused too many times.

Yagno Petrovna and the cult of Zakhata is possibly the most hateful one from the demiplane of the dread. If this returns, it needs a total reboot. I can accept the idea of a religion promoting fast as a way to learn self-control, but based in the intentional starving is ridiculous. How could they replace the previous religion with other so "unconfortable"?
I mean, it's a made up religion in the setting. Yagno's god doesn't exist, it's just his delusions. I'm a little sad it came back as Circle of Darkness offered a rare chance to see a darklord give up their obsession and break free of the Dark Powers.
 


overgeeked

B/X Known World
The 5e version does 1d6 poison per hour and taking damage still prevents short/long rest. Even if you argue you could somehow rest though it, you're full hp would be reduced by 8d6 damage. Might be doable if your party is all dwarves, warforged, and green dragonborn...
Or have Leomund’s Tiny Hut, Rope Trick, a genie pact warlock of sufficient level, or any other extradimensional space or environment filtering spell.
 

ChaosOS

Legend
So with the "other domains" section being less than a page per Domain, in guessing that most of them are going to be designed as DIY ideas for DMs to expand using the darklord rules rather than directly updating older domains. It also tells me they aren't changing much with those domains directly, unlike the featured domains. I would bet the adepts on DMsGuild will be fleshing out a few of them via that project.
Adepts are pretty non existant at this point - Chris Lindsey, the WotC person in charge, has been ghosting everyone and the adepts that still exist have stopped producing content.
 



Adepts are pretty non existant at this point - Chris Lindsey, the WotC person in charge, has been ghosting everyone and the adepts that still exist have stopped producing content.
I've been wondering what's going on. If he's not saying, my corporate experience suggests that WotC is retooling the program or possibly scrapping it, but the powers that be won't have a decision any time soon, so everything's in limbo.
 

Or have Leomund’s Tiny Hut, Rope Trick, a genie pact warlock of sufficient level, or any other extradimensional space or environment filtering spell.
Yeah but if the Train is a Dark Lord, then it could then shunt the extradimensional space into another Extradimensional Chaos Pocket and that just made things turn for the worse. Or it just regurgitates the extradimensional space into another one of its cars.
 

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