starting curse of strahd at level 5
And the reason I’m writing this and you’re reading this, is 2016 Curse of Strahd, an adaptation to the original module released by WotC for 5th edition. I know there are some mechanisms for resurrecting characters like the Abbey, or even just having Dark Powers bring them back, but will overusing them undermine the horror atmosphere? It sadly is not. Level up once/session ... start at level 5 ... play one location each day (not sure if you can keep to this). Dungeons & Dragons, D&D, their respective logos, and all Wizards titles and characters are property of Wizards of the Coast LLC in the U.S.A. and other countries. - Intro to Barovia - pass through the village of Barovia - get a tarot reading at the Vistani camp - give them information they will need. It’s handy to look at the “Areas by Level” table in page 6. Haven't completed my run of this campaign but I think the most easy shortcut is to replace the initial hook letter by the invitation to the diner and add the initial fortune reading to this initial encounter outside of Barovia and make sure that all 3 items can be obtained on the way to the castle. There’s a campaign setting of the same name, lots of small adventure modules. Either you can run your own mini adventure prior to CoS, or you can drop the party into Barovia anyway and run the Death House; a mini adventure designed to level up the party to level 3, set the tone of the setting and introducing the bleak Village of Barovia. This is the most important part of the module. If they fight the vampire spawn in Vallaki either at the coffin shop or church they'll be up against a CR 13+ fight at around level 4 or 5, etc. The main Curse of Strahd module encompasses levels 3-10. Limit the Tarot reading so that the items are only found in the places you go. Arrigal is actually a vistani and Strahd’s ally. The group I was in utterly ignored the dinner invitation, btw, so as usual be prepared for your players to not do what they're "supposed to". (no endorsement btw). You also need to decide how much role playing vs combat. The important thing about Curse of Strahd is that we have to understand that we’re practically playing a different game, it’s not the hack and slash game you play every Friday. I've found that keeping them on track with heavy narration works too. Your email address will not be published. It’s awesome to see the party’s confidence grow like that. Even then you should probably go over the content a few times to see what is manageable. Or better yet ! Fantasy Grounds Random Encounter Generator, Sora Esma's Tome of Urban Legends: 13 Across Eberron Folktales, Death is Only the Beginning? He can normally be found near Vallaki in the Vistani Camp (page 119, his portrait is in page 122). That’s something to love about the setting, it’s not min-maxed for the commodity of players, the world has its own way and it won’t adapt to visitors. The book provides three ways to introduce the adventure, they work equally well for level 1 or level 3 adventurers. You might deem convenient to place the Tome of Strahd in Van Richten’s Tower (page 167) since he’s been in Barovia for a longer time investigating the Count. But there are moments of dread that should be respected for the integrity of the table’s experience. The first part of this chapter deals with Strahd’s history, goals and motivations and how to roleplay him. This hook is as good as your persuasive abilities when role playing Stanimir, however it says that the vistani lead the party all the way to the Tser Pool Encampment (page 36) bypassing all the stuff that comes before. So players might want to find Stanimir to confront him, only now he will be found in the Vistani Camp in Vallaki (page 122). I'm finding this formula quite manageable and keeping with the spirit and flavor of the game. You’re supposed to do this in private before the campaign but I advice the opposite. However we can fix it, if the vistani abandon the party in the woods during the night, leaving them for the Creeping Fog then it is sound. This mini adventure is found in Appendix B (page 211). It’s a different thing, it’s a horror game. It's one of my favorite places to explore with new to COS players. It takes away from the module the issue of having to protect an NPC. But this is the art business. It and a success back then. In 2006 WotC released “Expedition to Castle Ravenloft” which is a small campaign with the castle and some added material from the setting for 3.5 edition. It explains how tough each area is according to party level. Some of the locations are quite combat heavy of the 1 fight/day sort. Or maybe Argynvostholt with an additional werewolf attack. If it comes to that, you might consider overthrowing Baron Vargas Vallakovich a story goal and award a level. Not even the “finding artifact” part of my list (4-6) is set in stone. What you get is impressive hi-def versions of my maps to be used in your RPG games (these have lower resolution), and the satisfaction of helping the rpg community grow bigger and stronger. It was released as a stand alone booklet for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. About levels, the adventure per se starts at level 3. So here’s my take and suggestion on how to handle leveling in Curse of Strahd. Limit the Tarot reading so that the items are only found in the places you go. - Wizard of Wines/Yesterhill - the battle at Yesterhill can be much easier if they recover the Gulthias staff from the battle at the winery, - Village of Berez or Argynvostholt (but make the dragon skull accessible), - Amber Temple - key part of Strahds back story, - Castle Ravenloft (this is huge but depending on timing they can either run into Strahd sooner or later). Excellent for games in the Forgotten Realms or any game featuring members of these factions. As long as the goal feels rewarding the level can be awarded. There has to be a general consensus of the type of experience that is wanted and how to achieve it. Time after time we see in movies, book, series and RPG games that a new adaptation is launched. Don’t leave the reading to chance. It works in any tavern in any place or setting. This would be a perfect Halloween one-shot for a group of 4-5 players of 9-10th level. Death House is designed to jump characters up quickly from level 1 to level 3, so that they can begin Curse of Strahd proper, which itself is designed to begin at level 3. The game peaks when the elements that make it good are actually used in the game. If they fight the vampire spawn in Vallaki either at the coffin shop or church they'll be up against a CR 13+ fight at around level 4 or 5, etc. That and the increase food cost felt ridiculous (I assume that was from the book) and finding stuff to earn coin for room and board got hard. It usually happens when the original creators or directors are not included in the new products. Written by Tracy and Laura Hickman, it was released as a stand alone booklet for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. Or making inappropriate remarks directly to Strahd only to make everyone in the table laugh. I realize there's sort of two semi-contradictory aspects to this adventure. If there's new information to be shared, share it, but cite your information to a reputable source. The adventure is harsher on the lower end of the levels. Or maybe they won’t, as it is a fictional game, but they will be experienced enough role-players and they will role play their PC’s fear. I'm building a character for a new Curse of Strahd campaign (level 1-10) and I want to create good party synergy or fill a needed role. I’ve seen some groups abandoning the game before level 5 because they didn’t find it appealing. It’s not a roleplaying heavy game with lots of politics and city factions and what not. Here are some notes or recommendations about them: This one is easy to implement. I’ve had awesome experiences running CoS in 5th edition. Here you see the assassin Arrigal delivering a forged letter to the party. Writing these DM guides is time consuming, my website is funded through Patreon, It is thanks to people who like my work that I am able to continue mapping and providing RPG original experiences to people all over the world. However there are more goals than there are levels since the campaign is supposed to get the party to level 10 only. Make sure you follow the rest of this Curse of Strahd DM Guide. The problem is that the Amber Temple and Ravenloft might easily be more than one session each. The book provides three alternatives; find the artifacts (the Sunsword, the Tome of Strahd and the Holy Symbol of Ravenkind), defeating important villains like the witches in the windmill or the werewolves. Nothing more unrewarding than the party finding the Sunsword in the Village of Barovia by mistake and getting a level for free.
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