Setting[ edit ] Ravenloft is primarily a Gothic horror setting. Dungeon Masters are encouraged to use scenes that build apprehension and fear, culminating in the eventual face-to-face meeting with the nameless evil. One exception is the phlogiston of the Spelljammer setting. Their exact nature and number are deliberately kept vague, allowing for plot development in accordance with the Gothic tradition of storytelling — where the heroes are frequently outclassed and outnumbered by unknowable evil forces beyond their control. The Dark Powers most frequently serve as a plot device for Ravenloft, especially concerning the Darklords, the de facto visible rulers of the Ravenloft Demiplane.
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Setting[ edit ] Ravenloft is primarily a Gothic horror setting. Dungeon Masters are encouraged to use scenes that build apprehension and fear, culminating in the eventual face-to-face meeting with the nameless evil.
One exception is the phlogiston of the Spelljammer setting. Their exact nature and number are deliberately kept vague, allowing for plot development in accordance with the Gothic tradition of storytelling — where the heroes are frequently outclassed and outnumbered by unknowable evil forces beyond their control. The Dark Powers most frequently serve as a plot device for Ravenloft, especially concerning the Darklords, the de facto visible rulers of the Ravenloft Demiplane.
Where the player characters are often tormented and opposed by the Darklords, the Darklords are themselves tormented and opposed by the Dark Powers. Vecna and Lord Soth "escaped" Ravenloft, but are the only two Darklords known to have done so; Vecna by attaining the status of Greater God and thus becoming too powerful for the Dark Powers to contain and Lord Soth by ignoring his domain and punishment, causing the Dark Powers to lose interest in imprisoning him, and agents of his former curse on the world of Krynn coming to collect him.
Most frequently, the Dark Powers make their wishes and intentions known through subtle manipulations of fate. Most other Darklords have similar tales of frustration, kept all the more unbearable because the flicker of the possibility of success is never truly extinguished. Not all Darklords acknowledge the Dark Powers directly, however. Strahd, for example, in his own memoirs, speaks only of a force known as Death, who mocks him with the voices of his family and former colleagues throughout his life.
Vlad Drakov , the Darklord of Falkovnia whose military expeditions are doomed to constant failure, seems even to be totally oblivious to any non-mortal factors in his repeated defeats. The Dark Powers also seem capable of non-evil manipulations. Some tales of innocents who have escaped Ravenloft for happier environs are attributed to the Dark Powers, who have judged a being worthy of reward and release from their misty domain. The precise nature of the Dark Powers of Ravenloft is never explicitly described in the game material, with the exception of a few of the novels based on the setting, and even those are considered non-canon[ citation needed ].
In a sense, the Dark Powers are intended to be eternal unknowns, an array of mercurial, unforeseeable, and inscrutable wills whose motives and actions the player characters cannot hope to understand. I6 , published in In , Ravenloft spun off into a sub-setting called Masque of the Red Death , set on Gothic Earth, an Edgar Allan Poe -influenced alternative Earth of the s, where fantasy creatures and magic exist in the shadows of civilization. Each was typically focused on one of the darklords that inhabited the Ravenloft world, with several focusing on the figure of Count Strahd von Zarovich.
These authors have included Elaine Bergstrom , P. Elrod , Christie Golden , and Laurell K. The campaign settings published by White Wolf introduced a number of alterations, many due to conflicts with existing Wizards of the Coast intellectual property. The license to the Ravenloft trademark reverted to Wizards of the Coast on August 15, , but White Wolf retained the right to continue to sell its back stock until June Instead, it was released by White Wolf as a free download in late September This version includes maps from the original Ravenloft adventure, and new character-generation options.
A short story by Ari Marmell , "Before I Wake", based on the realms of Darkon, Lamordia, and Bluetspur was released on October 31, , on the Wizards of the Coast website as a special for Halloween; it featured characters inspired by H.
Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith. Designed to be a retelling of the original no. I6 Ravenloft adventure module, Curse of Strahd expanded the content into a much larger sandbox, detailing several new towns, characters, and subplots in Barovia to provide enough content to take players from level 1 to level The established Ravenloft Campaign setting of previous editions was ignored.
This adventure set in Barovia is placed in the default campaign for 5th edition of Forgotten Realms. Wizards of the Coast was purchased by Hasbro, Inc. Wizards of the Coast also published stand alone 3. Following list excludes several gaming miniatures, comics or collectible cards that have been released bearing the Ravenloft logo or that have ties to Ravenloft characters.
Free Fiction: Black Crusade by Ari Marmell
Or is it part of an entirely different core? Dominion Which connects Ravenloft to different eras on Earthand a Raevnloft novel line which focuses specifically on Ravenloft on its own? Q Oh, that sounds a-MAZ-ing! Lists with This Book.
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