Dungeons and Dragons players and dungeon masters who are looking to inject some horror into their campaign during October may want to draw inspiration from D&D’s Curse of Strahd adventure.
The month of October is a time when folks like to add a bit more horror to their day-to-day lives. Curse of Strahd is an adventure that brings various horror elements into a D&D campaign. Vampires, werewolves and cultists are just a few foes players will run into when they play Curse of Strahd.
Curse of Strahd was released in 2016 as a reboot for the old Ravenloft Campaign Setting, which was expanded upon from the Castle Ravenloft adventure developed by Tracy and Laura Hickman.
The 2016 adventure will take players from level 1-10. During the adventure, players venture to the Demiplane of Dread and confront the vampire Strahd Von Zarovich.
The Curse of Strahd module features a roadmap of the campaign where players arrive in Barovia and begin their journey. From there they will embark on a quest on behalf of the villagers to defeat the count – or join him depending on their actions.
The DM can have the players face different encounters in the area surrounding the villages of Barovia or Kzrek, or they can explore different ruins throughout the area. A particular favorite is the Death House that lives up to its name and has been a hinderance for many adventuring parties.
No matter where the group is located, they will likely run into agents of Strahd.
What makes Curse of Strahd different from other adventures is it not necessarily set in the Forgotten Realms. DMs who are running homebrew campaigns, or adventures set in Eberron and Dragonlance, can have their characters travel from their native plane to Barovia.
Although Curse of Strahd was released in 2016, it remains a popular module for players to run in campaigns. It was also featured on several live play shows and podcasts one being Taking Initiative. It was also the first adventure for the Dice, Camera, Action’s Waffle Crew.
Another adventure with horror elements is Tomb of Annihilation. While it does not have vampires, the story focuses a force preventing people from being resurrected. Like Curse of Strahd, D&D live play shows and podcasts have ran Tomb of Annihilation.
There are other, numerous modules and books players can use for horror elements into the game. One of the classic adventures is Tomb of Horrors, which has no official adaption for fifth edition but DMs can convert the module on their own.
Players can research on the DM’s guild for adventure ideas, or they can make their own sessions focused on a horror theme.
Players and DMs do not have to stick to only playing Curse of Strahd in October. Horror has been a staples of Dungeons and Dragons for years.
What are some of your favorite horror themes you like to use in your D&D sessions?