D&D 5E Wilderness or Hexcrawl products

thirdkingdom

Hero
Publisher
I'm looking to discover some 3pp stuff for 5e that focuses on either wilderness exploration or hexcrawling (not interested in official WOTC products). Can anyone point me in the direction of these things? Bonus points if they're in print form.
 

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Lyxen

Great Old One
ToA is a hexcrawl.

No, the middle part of Tomb of Annihilation (ToA) is a hexcrawl, but, not the start (which actually occupied us for a long time) which is a city adventure (and a good one if you buff it up only a little) and not the end which is a dungeon crawl - and actually a really good one.
 


AdmundfortGeographer

Getting lost in fantasy maps
Goodman Games 5e conversion of the classic, The Isle of Dread.
Downcrawl and Skycrawl both do a system agnostic 5E compatible wilderness exploration. For subterranean or sky islands/fantasy space respectively.

Honestly, the wilderness exploration section of the OSR Worlds Without Numbers can be used with 5E. It’s mostly helpful for the DM to build out a robust region as players explore.
 

Quickleaf

Legend
I'm looking to discover some 3pp stuff for 5e that focuses on either wilderness exploration or hexcrawling (not interested in official WOTC products). Can anyone point me in the direction of these things? Bonus points if they're in print form.
I highly recommend Tim Bannock's product: Old School Hacks Vol. 1: Hexcrawling - Wilderness Exploration and Random Encounters - Dungeon Masters Guild | Dungeon Masters Guild

I have no vested interest - he's just really good at succinctly summing up the main ideas behind hexcrawling & providing relevant examples.

As far as 3pp print products dealing with hexcrawls, Hot Springs Island has gotten great reviews: The Dark of Hot Springs Island
 


estar

Adventurer
I have run my Blackmarsh setting with 5e numerous times. And the PDF is free.

Through playing campaigns with Swords & Wizardry (a OD&D variant) and 5e I found the power curves of both to be compatible. So when I am using Blackmarsh and my Points of Light stuff in 5e I just sub in the appropriate stat block for NPCs and Monsters and I am good to go.

Also due to the hexcrawl format of Blackmarsh and my Points of Light, stat blocks are minimal. The focus on is on scope at the local level of detail.

While a different setting, you may want to look at the Wilderlands of High Fantasy if you want something more expansive. It is to be honest more barebones than how I do PoL and Blackmarsh however a lot of folks including myself have been inspired by it into running campaigns over decades.


The key to using the Wilderlands is to remember while there is a lot of local level details, it is pretty sparse on the high level details. This give you freedom arrange that how you like whether you treat like islands of civilization in a sea of wilderness, or organize things into kingdoms, republics, and empires that more like Game of Thrones. (Which is what I did in the fullness of time with my Majestic Wilderlands..
 







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