Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle – an alternative
Wizards of the Coast announced their Gencon exclusive adventure “Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle” and many D&D players collectively went “Oooo” as this would be the first officially available adventure (not counting the playtest ones) available for the D&D Next ruleset – and then many of us let out an anguished “Argh!” as we discovered that it is only available to purchase by those attending Gencon.
To say we we’re disappointed is a huge understatement, with no 4e books released since “Elminsters Forgotten Realms” we were all eager to get hold of not only a fresh Realms product but an adventure to boot.
“Ghosts of Dragonspear Castle is a D&D Next preview and mini-campaign comprised of four thrilling adventures designed to advance characters from 1st level to 10th level. The book also contains everything a Dungeon Master needs to run the adventures, including D&D Next game rules developed during the massive public playtest, monster statistics, spell descriptions, magic item descriptions, and background information on the coastal town of Daggerford, where the campaign is based.
Against the backdrop of the Sundering, brave adventurers must protect the town of Daggerford against an insidious foreign threat while forging alliances, exploring dungeons, and battling monsters. The action moves from the Lizard Marsh to the orc-infested hills, finally culminating in a deadly altercation amid the crumbling ruins of the legendary Dragonspear Castle”
However, all is not as dismal as it seems my friends as the original adventure and mini-campaign much of this is based upon is now available from DnDClassics – the 1e adventure, N5 Under Illefarn
I’m lucky enough to still have my original hardcopy of this brilliant product, and used it as the jumping off point in several 1e and 2e campaigns over the years. If you use it in conjunction with the playtest rules it should run reasonably smoothly and therefore allow us mere mortals that are unable to attend Gencon to still enjoy the richness of such a rediscovered treasure.
With the release of these products, the Realms will never be truly Forgotten. “Swords high, my friends!”