Resurrecting Classic D&D Modules

Released to hobby stores this past weekend and general retailers next week is Tales From the Yawning Portal, a Dungeons & Dragons adventure compendium from Wizards of the Coast. It’s a hardcover volume like the company’s recent adventure products but rather than one extended campaign, its contents are seven classic modules reimagined for 5th Edition rules. Included are: Against the Giants, Dead in Thay, Forge of Fury, Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan, Sunless Citadel, Tomb of Horrors, and White Plume Mountain.

Additional classic modules will be coming from a partnership of WOTC and Goodman Games in the form of hardcover Collector’s Editions. The first will ship later this year with an in-depth treatment of TSR’s B series, In Search of the Unknown and The Keep on the Borderlands. Multiple versions of the two modules will be reprinted in the volume, along with historical information, commentary, an interview with the author, complete conversions of both to 5th Edition, and even additional material on the area around the Caves of Chaos (including the Cave of the Unknown).

I’m looking forward to them all but still hoping for Expedition to the Barrier Peaks!

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Crowdfunding Highlights

Christopher Ferguson revisits the old zip-top-bag micro war game format with his Kickstarter project for Star Patrol. It’s a hex-and-counter game of spaceship combat that embraces Newtonian space flight mechanics. During the course of the game, players must keep track of inertia and orientation for each of their custom-designed ships.

Also hearkening back to the earlier days of hobby gaming is the Marmoreal Tomb Campaign Starter from Earnest Gary Gygax Jr. Designed for AD&D (but with stretch goals also compatible with Pathfinder and 5th Edition), the campaign is based on the game Earnest used to run while managing the Dungeon Hobby Shop for TSR.

Another RPG project on Kickstarter turns the 1993 novel, Vurt by Jeff Noon, in to a tabletop game. The setting of Vurt is a cyberpunk world in which munching on color-coded feathers allows people to access an alternate reality. In game form, Vurt will use Monte Cook Games’ Cypher System.

Dingo's Dreams TilesAlternate realities of a sort also make an appearance on the board game front. Dingo’s Dreams from Red Raven Games and designer Alf Seegert has players guiding animals through a dream world. Gameplay involves manipulating a matrix of tiles so that as they’re flipped from landscape-side to animal-side, the animals fit a specific target pattern for the round.

Prime Time from Golden Egg Games is a board game about managing a television network. Players compete to develop shows, cast actors, and fill their weekly schedules in a way that will attract various viewer demographics, earn awards, and sell advertising. A somewhat more substantial Euro-style strategy game, this one nevertheless appears to marry mechanics and theme very well.

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