Every Dungeon Master can use more adventures. Wizards of the Coast has been doing its part by supporting Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition with several lengthy campaigns. Their most recent release, Tales from the Yawning Portal, collects several classic adventures and reinterprets them for the latest edition with an eye to shorter campaigns or fill-in slots. Sometimes, the DM just needs something for a night or two, and while there are hundreds of selections on Dungeon Master’s Guild, sometimes people want a name they can trust to provide adventure and excitement. Enter Sly Flourish’s Fantastic Adventures, a Kickstarter looking to put together 10 adventures for Dungeon Masters in need of inspiration.
Sly Flourish, aka Mike Shea, provides solid Dungeon Master advice via his Sly Flourish blog. A Kickstarter for Sly Flourish’s Fantastic Locations was his first last year, the process of which inspired him for his current one.
“The idea has been kicking around in my head for years,” said Shea. “I wrote an article on the site Critical Hits back in September 2010 on what I wanted from published adventures and then forgot about it until a friend recently reminded me about it. Reading back on it, I wanted much of the same things I wanted then: a modular module broke up into big pieces GMs need to run games like NPCs, locations, story hooks, and lots of read-aloud text. Last year, after finishing the main work on Fantastic Locations, I started noodling through the idea of going a level deeper than just locations and building out a set of quick-prep adventures.”
Fantastic Adventures stands alone but does connect with the first book in a few ways. The adventures suggest ways to connect the settings from Fantastic Locations for fans of the first book, while bringing back the artist that they loved the most.
“I got multiple people who talked about how much they loved the art,” said Shea. “Brian Patterson, the artist at D20Monkey.com, did all of the art for Fantastic Adventures. His art is not the traditional style you see in most fantasy RPG books. It’s extremely vibrant. It pops. It’s a nice change from the traditional and people definitely noticed that and resonated with it.”
In addition to his books of locations and adventures, Shea also has taking some of the best bits of advice from his column and turned them into books. His most popular book, The Lazy Dungeon Master, offers plenty of great advice for Dungeon Masters regardless of which edition of D&D they prefer to play. The important points of advice for any Dungeon Master are:
- Focus on the players.
- Make things happen.
- Let things happen.
- Focus on characters, backgrounds, and stories.
- Say yes.
- Have fun.
Shea also has some advice for players. “Build your characters so they’ll have fun with a group of fellow adventurers. Avoid characters that don’t want to be in a party or don’t want to be out adventuring. It sounds like you’re breaking the mold but you’re just going to end up either violating your own background or being a jerk. Build characters other players will enjoy.”
The Kickstarter runs until Tuesday, May 2nd. Fans who missed out on Fantastic Locations can back the Kickstarter at a level where they receive copies of both books. One of the adventures is available free in the page for backers to try before they buy.
What is your favorite fantastic location? Let us know in the comments.
Image Credits: Mike Shea
Rob Wieland is an author, game designer and professional nerd. He writes about kaiju, Jedi, gangsters, elves, Vulcans and sometimes all of them at the same time. His blog is here, his Twitter is here and his meat body can be found in scenic Milwaukee, WI.