Pyramid Review

Expedition to Castle Ravenloft (for Dungeons & Dragons)

Published by Wizards of the Coast

Written by Bruce R. Cordell & James Wyatt

Cover by Kev Walker

Illustrated by Dave Allsop, Kalman Andrasofsky, Ralph Horsley, William O'Connor, Lucio Parrillo, Anne Stokes, & Eva Widerman

Cartography by Jason Engle & Kyle Hunter

226-page full-color hardcover; $34.95

First published in 1983, the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons module Ravenloft (I6) is noted for several things. First, it introduced the horror genre to Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. Second, it presented a major villain, Count Strahd von Zarovich, to the game. Third, it contained the late David Sutherland's amazing orthogonal maps that depicted the grandeur and scale of Castle Ravenloft. Fourth, it utilized "The Fortunes of Ravenloft," an in-game encounter with gypsies during which the characters' futures are told and the location of items inimical to Strahd, of Strahd himself, and his motives, all determined. Since this could be different every time, Ravenloft (I6) could be played again and again, the experience slightly different each time. This was a process that would be repeated in the authors' Gangbusters module Death in Spades (GB5), determining victim method, motive, and the murderer.

The setting for Ravenloft (I6) is the isolated valley of Barovia. For centuries it has been dominated by Count Strahd von Zarovich's baleful pall, a man driven into madness, then evil by his unrequited love for his . . .

This article originally appeared in the second volume of Pyramid. See the current Pyramid website for more information.

Article publication date: February 23, 2007

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