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5E Why is Hoard of the Dragon Queen such a bad adventure?

Tallifer

Villager
Basically there are kobolds and bullywugs in the castle. You don't have to ally with either of them, but you can sow discontent, particularly with the kobolds and encourage them to turn against the bullywugs.
I always have a soft spot for talking with the small and cute monsters. Even though they usually end of pilfering all my stuff.

Lizardmen b&w.jpg
 
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The Big BZ

Villager
I ran HotDQ and RoT when they came out first and enjoyed them, it is quite railroady and takes a lot of prep though. You just have to get a sense of your group and adjust, for example there was no way that ‘another fake mask’ was going to fly with my group so they found real masks and Tiamat was consequently weaker etc
 

vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
I always have a soft spot for talking with the small and cute monsters. Even though they usually end of pilfering all my stuff.

View attachment 100712
My girlfriend has the same problem; most of the time she ends up playing one of them after her character dies. I used the Sunless Citadel as an intro adventure to HotDQ and now she's been playing Meepo the Kobold for 6 months as an ''Arcane Slinger'' (arcane archer but uses a sling).

As a side note, where do you find those hand drawn, black and white picture you always post with your comments? Do you make them yourself? As a fan of some OSR games, those would be amazing for someone wanting to illustrate OSR adventures.
 

Tallifer

Villager
As a side note, where do you find those hand drawn, black and white picture you always post with your comments? Do you make them yourself? As a fan of some OSR games, those would be amazing for someone wanting to illustrate OSR adventures.
Drawings I drew for XP in various games. Some of the drawings are by one of my players.
 

cmad1977

Explorer
I think HoTDQ should have, come chapter 4(the road trip), made a clear statement that ‘now is the time to practice building your own sessions. Here are some ideas and NPCs’ and then given a bit of advice on number/type of encounters and such.

I ran that section so poorly. However it had cool ideas for one off sessions and my players, despite all of us not enjoying that part of the adventure, distinctly remember a number of the NPCS.
I should have run that part as a site by site ‘tour’ up to Waterdeep with the wagons being kind of a mobile ‘home base’.
 

jeremypowell

Explorer
I should have run that part as a site by site ‘tour’ up to Waterdeep with the wagons being kind of a mobile ‘home base’.
This.

In fact, I think the whole first half of HotDQ works better if you treat it like this. The module spends about one page, and a fraction of a single game session, getting the party from Greenest to the caravan leaving Baldur's Gate. When I DM'd the module, this journey took about 10 game sessions, because I had the players actually play through all that -- encounters in the Greenfields, a two-session subplot in Elturel, an encounter at Fort Morninglord and a couple more onboard the barge on the Chionthar, and a major subplot in Baldur's Gate involving followers of Severin (the Calishite leader of the Cult) based in Little Calimshan.

My players loved it.

Note that all this is not a complaint about the module, per se. And doing it this way takes an already DM-prep-heavy module and exacerbates that issue. But, for confident DMs with time on their hands and a committed play group willing to tack a few months' play onto the beginning of the campaign, I think this is the way to go.
 
It's still just a game. Meant to be fun. Sorry, but rolling up a new PC because the module designer thought a CR 8 encounter against level 3 PCs would be fun for the DM, does not make it fun for me as a player. This level of "campaign world realism" where a too powerful foe (or foes) is in the adventure because "it could happen" in a campaign world is not the reason to write these uber monsters into a module. It just means to me that the module designer made a design mistake.
Then have house rules like we do. If a character wipes, the player gets to choose 1 of 2 options. 1) Create a new character like the official rules say to do; or 2) Your character miraculously survives and shows up after that particular combat is over, but has gained no loot or experience (and usually gets picked on pretty badly by his companions by fainting during the fight). If the entire party wipes, we use WoW rules and ressurect right before the battle. In that scenario, we frequently rethink our battle plans.
 
So next year WotC can announce a 5-year Anniversary Edition with the editing mistakes fixed; and some sidebars - or an 'Upon Further Review' chapter - which address the problems (and suggestions) from these impromptu feedback threads ! :eek:
*checks date of post*

Ok, you're either a secret WotC employee or you have precongnition because this is exactly what just happened. HotDQ and RoT are being re-released, together, as a LE Tyranny of Dragons book with Hydro47 art, a revamped first chapter, and a bunch of editing and balancing.

As someone who DMed this near the beginning of the edition, and spent a lot of time reworking everything until the Caravan chapter, I'm very curious what the revamp will fix.
 
Do you know when this is coming out? I just bought the original two books and plan to start running the campaign in about a month (depends when we finish up with our current campaign).
 

Parmandur

Adventurer
So next year WotC can announce a 5-year Anniversary Edition with the editing mistakes fixed; and some sidebars - or an 'Upon Further Review' chapter - which address the problems (and suggestions) from these impromptu feedback threads ! :eek:
What Sorcery is this...
 
Lawful Evil you say? Surely this campaign is Chaotic Evil? But perhaps with some edits it now actually follows the encounter building rules... ;)
Ha! I never even considered that when typing it. Surely, you know I meant Limited Edition, though. ;) But yes, let's hope the edits actually make it a playable adventure for newer DMs. There's a lot of good stuff in both HotDQ and RoT, but it needs some serious cleanup as-is.
 

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