Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Plundering 5E Adventures for Freeport

I own a few of the many adventures that Wizards of the Coast has published for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition. Most of them would be difficult to use as-is with Freeport, unless you set the City of Adventure in the Forgotten Realms (see my column on The Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide and Freeport). Even then, Freeport would definitely not be the focus of any campaign based on these adventures.

On the other hand, almost any adventure will have some material that can be plundered for use in other campaigns, including a Freeport-centric one. In this brief column, I will look at some of the adventures I own (or have access to through my local library) and discuss what content would be most useful for a D&D Fifth Edition Freeport game. Magic items and creatures reprinted from the Monster Manual or Volo's Guide to Monsters are omitted.

NOTE: This column contains spoilers for the D&D adventures discussed here, as well as for a few Freeport adventures.

Lost Mine of Phandelver (Starter Set)

Magic Items: Death in Freeport features a staff of defense, a version of which appears in this adventure's appendices.

Monsters: The Evil Mage and Redbrand Ruffian are suitable for use as NPCs in Freeport. (Simply rename the Redbrands to match one of the city's many gangs.)

Princes of the Apocalypse

I have not read this adventure, but I do own the Elemental Evil Player's Guide (a free PDF), which reprints the genasi race and new elemental-themed spells from that book.

Races: Fire genasi can be used for the efreeti-blooded azhar with no changes needed, making them a reasonably common sight in Freeport. Unlike genasi in most other settings, the azhar have bred true for generations and formed a cohesive culture, long before they founded the nation of Kizmir on the Continent. The Azharan language can be treated as being either the same as the Ignan dialect of Primordial, or a separate language derived from it.

Water and air genasi are likely to visit Freeport from time to time as well, but earth genasi would be an extremely rare sight, given their preference for solid ground.

The three other new races in the Elemental Evil Player's Guide are aarakocra, deep gnomes, and goliaths (with the last being reprinted in Volo's Guide to Monsters). These, too, would be rare visitors, most likely originating in small enclaves on the Continent (or under it, for svirfneblin) or more distant lands.

Spells: As I mentioned in my review of Xanathar's Guide to Everything, elemental magic is quite popular in Freeport, so most of these new spells are highly appropriate for the setting.

Curse of Strahd

Character Options: The Haunted One background would be right at home in Freeport, which can easily provide enough trauma for many such back stories. Likewise, the monster hunter's pack should be available, and Gothic trinkets would not be out of place.

Monsters and NPCs: Mongrelfolk can be used for the calibans in True20 Freeport: The Lost Island.

Tales from the Yawning Portal

Of the adventures in this collection, Lost Shrine of Tomoachan would be the easiest to use as-is in a Freeport campaign--simply relocate it to a lost continent or sizable island. See my column on Plane Shift: Ixalan, the setting of which was inspired by Tomoachan, for suggestions.

Creatures: Nereids appeared in Creatures of Freeport, and a choker appears on the cover of the upcoming hardcover omnibus of the Return to Freeport adventure series. Several of the aquatic and plant monsters from Lost Shrine of Tomoachan and White Plume Mountain would be appropriate for the islands of the Serpent's Teeth and surrounding seas. Freeport also seems to be a magnet for exotic undead, and this book presents several new varieties.

Tomb of Annihilation

I have read very little of this jungle-themed adventure, but the appendices have a great deal of useful material for Freeport campaigns. Enterprising DMs should be able to tie Chult to the World of Freeport in some way, if they wish.

Character Backgrounds: Both the Anthropologist and Archaeologist are suitable backgrounds for adventuring scholars. They are most likely to be encountered at the Temple of the God of Knowledge, at the Freeport Institute, or in the field.

Monsters and NPCs: Assassin vines appear in True20 Freeport: The Lost Island, and all other plant monsters from this book are suitable for the Serpent's Teeth (and elsewhere in the subtropics). The stone juggernaut can be used for the Naranjani juggernauts of Mindshadows. In addition, the aldani, flying monkey, jaculi, kamadan, tabaxi (see Volo's Guide to Monsters for PC tabaxi), and new zombies would easily fit into a Freeport campaign.


For my past columns about using D&D Fifth Edition sourcebooks with Freeport: The City of Adventure, see the Freeport 5E Index.

No comments:

Post a Comment