In 2013, if I recall correctly, Stephen Yeardley published a trilogy of adventures for AdventureAWeek’s campaign setting: the Rise of the Drow. These were the magnum opus of the site, and still are. Yeah, they’ve done some big projects since, another giant adventure path, a bestiary and so on – but this was everything the site had been building towards.

After the adventure path was released, the site ran a kickstarter to get a hardcover print run for it, along with a ton of new stuff, and I was brought on as a contributor to the main book, as well as to write one of the three prequel adventures (as the original AP started at something like 7th level).

My adventure was the one immediately before the original AP, where the players had to rescue (and then escape with) a small army of slaves from a slightly smaller army of drow and slavers. But then, fifty unarmed commoners can’t really stand up against twenty heavily armed mercenaries and a contingent of spider-riding cavalry.

Aside from meeting a lot of great people, including my now-good-friend Mike Myler, on the project, I also really enjoyed creating this massive infiltration scenario, where the party has to break into a castle and get out. Unlike Saatman’s Throne, I did things right here, and made the entire castle a very dynamic place. People move around, worry about the ghosts of the previous owners (who also are there to cause trouble), the two groups of enemies are planning on betraying one another… All in all, it was fantastic.

Except, I discovered some six months later that a bunch of my map notes didn’t make it onto the final map – important things, like the map’s scale or which doors were locked. But, not everything turns out perfectly. 😉

You can find the Rise of the Drow Prologue book here on Paizo, where it got a 5/5 star rating.

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