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The Forgotten Terror (2e)
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The Forgotten Terror (2e)

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A knife flashes in the darkness. You never see the face of your attacker. The adventure begins.

Their spirits trapped by a cursed magical weapon, the heroes find themselves imprisoned on the surreal domain of Aggarath. Here they must explore the mind of Chardath Spulzeer, the insane lord of the realm. Somewhere in his shattered dreams and tormented memories lie secrets that may enable the adventurers to escape.

The Forgotten Terror is a new adventure for the Ravenloft campaign setting. It can be played as a stand-alone scenario or as a sequel to the events depicted in the Forgotten Realms adventure Castle Spulzeer. The unique nature of this domain and scenario makes The Forgotten Terror easy for the Dungeon Master to run without forcing players through a linear plot. Alternate endings allow the DM to link this adventure to Ravenloft, the Forgotten Realms, or any other campaign world.

For 4 to 6 characters of levels 10 to 12.

Product History

"The Forgotten Terror" (1997), by William W. Connors, is a Ravenloft adventure for the Domains of Dread. It was published in October 1997.

About the Cover. The cover for "The Forgotten Terror" (1997) is a match for "Castle Spulzeer" (1997). They both show Chardath Spulzeer with ghost Marble. However, here he's traded in his his magic dagger Aggarath for his axe Maleffluent.

Origins (I): After the Crash. "The Forgotten Terror" was another TSR publication that appeared very soon after Wizards of the Coast's purchase of the company. It was originally scheduled for June 1997, and it appeared in October 1997, just a few months after Wizards of the Coast restarted the D&D publication engine. It was probably published so soon because it was a nice Halloween release.

Origins (II): After the Domains. "The Forgotten Terror" was also the first Ravenloft supplement to follow Domains of Dread (1997), the third edition of the Ravenloft setting. It's a somewhat odd choice because it's set in a one-off domain, never seen before or since. The original plan had been to publish "Servants of Darkness" (1998) after Domains of Dread, an adventure with a more traditional Ravenloft setting. The change was likely due to the timed connection with "Castle Spulzeer".

Origins (III): After the Spulzeer. "The Forgotten Terror" is the immediate sequel to the Forgotten Realms adventure "Castle Spulzeer". As indicated by the cover, the new adventure follows two of the major NPCs from "Castle Spulzeer" into the mists of Ravenloft. Despite the tightness of the sequel, the two adventures are written by different authors and have quite different styles.

Adventure Styles: Episodic Locales. Though this adventure is definitely locale-based, giving the characters the opportunity to explore 12 different places, it's also very episodic: the players must do certain things in certain locales to move on. So, consider it a merging of the most popular design styles from the '70s, '80s, and '90s.

Adventure Tropes: To Win You Must Lose. Many Ravenloft adventures begin with the players succumbing to some terrible problem that they must then overcome. Here, they're imprisoned in a dagger that's the equivalent of a mirror of life trapping.

Adventure Tropes: Funhouse Dungeon. With each of the locales representing some facet of Chardath Spulzeer's personality, "The Forgotten Terror" is very scattered, with weird and different encounters occurring in each realm. This would make it the closest thing to a funhouse dungeon that you'd be likely to find in the AD&D 2e era (1989-2000).

Eras of Ravenloft: 751 BC. The interesting thing about this adventure's dating is that it ties to "Castle Spulzeer", which is set in 1367 DR, creating a link between the calendars of Ravenloft and the Realms.

Exploring Ravenloft. "The Forgotten Terror" is set in a brand-new realm called Aggarath, which is the smallest of Ravenloft domains. "Children of the Night: Werebeasts" (1998) would suggest that it is part of Professor Arcanus' traveling show.

Artifacts of Note. "The Forgotten Terror" reuses the two artifacts from "Castle Spulzeer", but with more emphasis. The life-stealing dagger, Aggarath, is actually the setting of the adventure, answering the question, what happens to a character whose soul is stolen?. The ego battle axe, Maleffluent, also makes a return appearance.

NPCs of Note. Similarly, "The Forgotten Terror" also revisits two major NPCs from "Castle Spulzeer". Chardath Spulzeer is the center of the adventure, while the setting represents his warped mind. His ghostly victim Marble also follows Chardath to Ravenloft.

About the Creators. With his experience co-authoring both Forbidden Lore (1992) and Ravenloft Campaign Setting (1994), Connors was definitely one of the Ravenloft line's stars in the '90s.

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)
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Pages
64
Edition
1.0
Publisher Stock #
TSR 9537
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File Last Updated:
July 23, 2017
This title was added to our catalog on July 25, 2017.