Close
Close
Advanced Search >

RR1 Darklords (2e)
Quick Preview
/gs_flipbook/flip.php?xml=/demo_xml/17488.xml&w=500&h=328
Full‑size Preview
https://watermark3.drivethrurpg.com/pdf_previews/17488-sample.pdf

RR1 Darklords (2e)

ADD TO WISHLIST >
Watermarked PDF
$10.95
$9.99

Within this volume are sixteen dark lords and ladies, each a prisoner of Ravenloft. Some are new to the setting, yet all may seem hauntingly familiar, for they have been lurking at the edge of your nightmares, waiting for the chance to emerge in your campaigns.

The Headless Horseman, the Phantom Lover, the Vampire Panther—these and other malignant forces await. You'll read ghastly tales of their past and grim accounts of their present. You'll visit their dark domains and tour the horrid sites portrayed in ten full-page maps.

The Shadows are lengthening; the air is growing chill. The Darklords are calling. Their voices are carried by the Mists of Ravenloft, and you have little choice but to answer.

*****

Product History

RR1: Darklords (1991), by Andria Hayday (with some additional design by William W. Connors, Bruce Nesmith, and James Lowder), is a 96-page Ravenloft accessory detailing 16 doomed, tragic, and/or evil villains for your game of gothic horror. They're designed to be used both center stage, as the primary antagonist, and off-camera, as the evil genius in the background who manipulates people and events toward some dark end. Use them to throw a few surprises into your D&D campaign; as inspiration for truly interesting and loathsome bad guys; or as a second, unsuspected opponent whenever your players think they've completely figured out your adventure's plot.

Heavy with Flavor. As is traditional for Ravenloft, this accessory is heavy on flavor and light on game statistics and rules. That's good if you're mining the book for ideas or plan to convert the villains to a different system—which is a great option, since the darklords fit any number of iconic or archetypal roles, and their backgrounds and motivations translate fairly easily to multiple game systems.

The “headless horseman,” for instance, slows his prey with waves of disembodied and reanimated heads (including medusa heads, which you'll want to watch out for). The “house of lament” is a sentient, evil building, haunted by ghosts and reminiscent of something in Poe. Child vampires, lycanthropic pirates, phantom lovers, magical and accursed paintings, mummified pharaohs, jealous murderers, evil swords, cackling and ancient hags, each has a full backstory and a reason for its evil existence.

Terrifying Needn’t Mean High Level. A notable aspect of this book is that most of the darklords aren't particularly powerful, even by 2nd edition AD&D standards. They average is around 8 HD, with several at 5 HD and none above 13. That makes this book useful as a low-level supplement, and significantly expands its utility. It's also a nice reminder that just because someone is evil and despicable, they aren't necessarily particularly tough or good at combat. They may have other abilities, assets, or assistance.

And of course, if you need your villains to be tougher, that’s an easy fix too, or you can just give them really tough henchmen. Keep it simple.

Maps and Adventure Hooks. Accompanying each of the darklords is one or more maps, whether of countries, towns, buildings, or specific adventure locales; in each case, though, the author makes it easy to drop a darklord into a ready-made adventuring locale in case the heroes come a-calling. Just be aware that there's an emphasis on isometric mapping, a style that was popular in Ravenloft and that lent itself more to beautiful maps than it did to useful ones.

Overall, this is a book filled with classic and iconic villains out of ghost stories and legend. I'll argue it's worth it for the little girl vampire alone: "I'm scared," she'll tell the heroes, "Can you protect me?" And after she gives them a hug, it's all over but the feeding.

About the Creators. Andria Hayday was a RPG designer and editor, described by John D. Rateliff as "quite possibly the industry's best editor." She worked primarily on Ravenloft and Al-Qadim properties for TSR and on West End Games' Star Wars d6 line.

About the Product Historian

History and commentary of this product was written by Kevin Kulp, game designer and admin of the independent D&D fansite ENWorld. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to kevin.kulp@gmail.com.

 

 

 
 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (4)
Discussions (0)
Reviews
-
June 15th, 2014
A good supplement even for those who aren't interested in Ravenloft. The good: Details several darklords who were never detailed again in later products. The background for a couple of darklords (Zolnik, House of Lament) is better and more det [...]
Alexander L. [Featured Reviewer]
-
November 15th, 2013
Originally posted at: http://diehardgamefan.com/2013/11/15/tabletop-review-ravenloft-darklords-advanced-dungeons-dragons-2nd-editi [...]
-
June 17th, 2006
great book! good variety for adventures and unique adversaries. had it once and it's worth getting again. <br><br> <b>LIKED</b>: variety for games in a world where vampires can get old.<br><br><b>DISLIKED</ [...]
-
May 14th, 2004
This product is hard to rate, as many different factors must be taken into account. The first thing that must be admitted is that with regard to overall atmosphere, Darklords is relatively bland. It's a sourcebook, and reads as such. Released re [...]
Browse Categories
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!
 Recent History











Product Information
Copper seller
Pages
98
Edition
1.0
ISBN
1560761377
Publisher Stock #
TSR 9331
File Size:
42.47 MB
Format
Scanned image
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Information
Watermarked PDF
Adobe DRM-protected PDF
These eBooks are protected by Adobe's Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology. To use them, you must activate your Adobe Reader software. Click here for more details.

Watermarked PDF

These eBooks are digitally watermarked to signify that you are the owner. A small message is added to the bottom of each page of the document containing your name and the order number of your eBook purchase.

Warning: If any books bearing your information are found being distributed illegally, then your account will be suspended and legal action may be taken against you.

Here is a sample of a page from a watermarked book:

File Last Updated:
November 12, 2013
This title was added to our catalog on November 12, 2013.