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DL14 Dragons of Triumph (1e)
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DL14 Dragons of Triumph (1e)

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The incredible Dragonlancesaga comes to its thrilling conclusion in this high-level adventure. The Heroes face their ultimate challenge as the Queen of Darkness exerts all her might to claim Krynn as her own.

Each of six possible endings leads to the defeat of either the Queen or the Heroes, and determines whether Krynn's future is one of light or darkness.

This adventure includes an optional Battlesystemscenario on the grandest scale yet published - five armies of evil take the field against the combined forces of good!

Finally, the DM is provided with a detailed sourcebook that details endless opportunities for further adventure in the world of Krynn.

"Dragons of Triumph" presents the culmination of the 14-module Dragonlanceseries, but it can also stand alone as a challenging, high-level adventure.

An adventure for Characters level 10-14.

Product History

DL14: "Dragons of Triumph" (1986), by Douglas Niles, is the fourteenth in the Dragonlance Chronicles series of adventures. It was published in August 1986.

Concluding the "DL" Series. Though TSR had published continuing adventures before Dragonlance — including the "GDQ" series and T1-4: The Temple of Elemental Evil (1985) — nothing else had approached the Chronicles' level of novelistic storytelling. Thus, "Dragons of Triumph" was an important release, because it triumphantly finished Krynn's epic storyline.

"Dragons of Triumph" was also the biggest Dragonlance module to date, including a 40-page adventure book, a 32-page maps and forms book, and a 24-page sourcebook, for 96 pages total.

Dragon of the Month. One of the ideas behind the Dragonlance series was to present 12 adventures that together highlighted the 10 standard dragon types and their two gods. "Dragons of Triumph" fulfills that promise by focusing at last on the chromatic dragon, known in Krynn as Takhisis. Just as DL13: "Dragons of Truth" (1986) took place in Paladine's GLitterpalace, "Dragons of Triumph" reaches its finale in Takhisis' temple.

Getting the Band Back Together. In DL6: "Dragons of Ice" (1985), the original band of Companions split up, with one group's journeys detailed in DL6-9 and the other in DL10, DL12, and DL13. Though "Dragons of Triumph" continues directly on from the finale of DL13 — which featured Tanis, Caramon, Raistlin, Tika, Riverwind, and Goldmoon — it somewhat awkwardly give players the choice to use any of the past Companions:

The PCs who were not involved in DL13 can be met during DL14 and the players may choose to run these PCs rather than the ones they have been running for the last few modules.

Presumably the goal was to make this final adventure the most memorable by letting each playing group take on the role of the characters they liked the best.

Adventures Tropes. Like its immediate predecessor, "Dragons of Triumph" is a relatively old-school adventure. Though there are tons of events underlying the story, it also contains a hex crawl, some city adventuring, and a climatic scene in the mini-dungeon of the Temple of Darkness.

The results of the story also are left entirely in the players hands. The back cover states there are "six possible endings", but that's just a reference to the random method for defeating Takhisis that was determined in the previous adventure. In actuality, the players have two main options: victory or defeat.

The Battlesystem Connection. With Douglas Niles back at the writing helm, it's not surprising that "Dragons of Triumph" includes tight integration with Battlesystem (1985). In fact, "Dragons of Triumph" has one of the most in-depth Battlesystem scenarios found anywhere, including 20 pages of Battlesystem army roster sheets and a Battlesystem scenario diagram.

The Novel Connection. The events of the adventure "Dragons of Triumph" are found in Chapters 5-14 of book 3 of the novel Dragons of Spring Dawning (1985). However, those chapters show how much the novels have changed since Dragons of Autumn Twilight (1984). That first Dragonlance novel was a clear adaptation of a D&D scenario, with a party of adventurers tromping around dungeons. In contrast, the finale of Dragons of Spring Dawning is about a few individuals — primarily Tanis and Caramon — making a different in a fraught world of politics and warfare. Meanwhile, major character moments from the novel focusing on Flint and Raistlin don't appear at all in the module. This reflected how the game designers were changing the relationship between the adventures and the novels, because they'd started to realize the troubles that arose out of telling the exact same story in both.

Expanding Krynn. "Dragons of Triumph" continues to detail the areas first discussed in "Dragons of Truth". The plains around Neraka and the city itself all get considerable more attention.

In addition, the sourcebook contains the second look at the most general world of Krynn, following DL5: "Dragons of Mystery" (1984). However, where "Dragons of Mystery" mostly focused on the Companions, this new sourcebook contains more details of the world itself, including a history, and maps of Ansalon both before the Cataclysm and after the War of the Lance. It's not enough to run a detailed campaign in the world, but it's a good start.

Monsters of Note. The sourcebook also contains a nice collection of all the creatures from past adventures, running from the ubiquitous draconians to the walrus-men. Though these monsters were available in previous publications, having them all in one place made them more accessible.

Future History. Though "Dragons of Triumph" marked the end of the original Dragonlance Chronicles, it didn't mark the end of TSR's exploration of Krynn. The next year, creators Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis offered their last look at the game world with the hardcover Dragonlance Adventures (1987). Then TSR published two more "DL" modules, each one an anthology of shorter adventures: DL15: "Mists of Krynn" (1988) and DL16: "World of Krynn" (1988).

After that, TSR continued to publish Krynn RPG products throughout the early years of AD&D 2e (1989-2000), though they never figured out how to recapture the epic majesty of the War of the Lance. That would await Weis and Hickman's return after Wizards of the Coast acquired D&D.

Meanwhile, these original War of the Lance adventures have been revamped a few times. TSR mildly updated them for AD&D 2e in the "DLC" series (1990-1994), then Wizards of the Coast expanded them even more in Dragonlance Classics 15th Anniversary Edition (1999). Finally, Sovereign Press and Margaret Weis Productions updated them for 3.5e in a three-volume series (2006-2008)

Though Krynn now hasn't been seen at Wizards of the Coast for a few years, Tyranny of Dragons (2014) revisits the plots of the chromatic dragon, though it's set in the world of the Forgotten Realms.

About the Creators. "Dragons of Triumph" was Niles' fifth and final contribution to Dragonlance, making him the biggest contributor to the Dragonlance Chronicles adventure path after Tracy Hickman himself. By now Niles was also working on his other masterpiece, the Bloodstone Pass series (1985-1988).

About the Product Historian

The history of this product was researched and written by Shannon Appelcline, the editor-in-chief of RPGnet and the author of Designers & Dragons - a history of the roleplaying industry told one company at a time. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to shannon.appelcline@gmail.com.

 
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Product Information
Author(s)
Pages
96
Edition
1.0
ISBN
0-88038-096-9
Publisher Stock #
TSR DL9180
File Size:
18.45 MB
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File Last Updated:
October 13, 2014
This title was added to our catalog on October 14, 2014.