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Murder on the Eberron Express
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Murder on the Eberron Express

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Murder on the Eberron Express is a character driven murder mystery, confined on a moving lightning rail, where the murderer changes each time you run it.


This 3-5 hour one-shot for level 6 characters aims to give you all the fun of a game of Clue with all the variety of Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition. It is set in Eberron, an unusual D&D setting, that is darker and with more pulp noir aesthetics.

Egan Bakker is a foundling from House Cannith, one of Khorvaire’s powerful Dragonmarked Houses, trying to make his way into their good graces. Bakker is an artificer on his way from Sharn to Fairhaven with his family and a suspicious collection of others. On the final day of travel, Bakker is shot and killed with newly invented firearm. The characters must solve the murder before they get to Fairhaven or the killer might escape, and they might be blamed by the Fairhaven guard.

Not to mention the fact that the murderer must be one of them...

Included: archetypes, game guide, NPC sheets for all the archetypes and others, magical items and more.

 
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Reviews (8)
Discussions (15)
Customer avatar
Chris G April 08, 2020 10:30 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hey Orla. I love the book. I have been prepping to run it for the past week and wanted a suggestion. What have you guys done whit the murder weapon?
Customer avatar
Orla N April 08, 2020 12:12 pm UTC
CREATOR
I've run it multiple times and listened to some groups online and honestly it's gone in every possible direction. The gun is on the table and it's up to you and the players to decide what happens next. I'm you know how unpredictable a party can be. I've seen everything from it being ignored entirely to it prompting entire PVP fight sequences.
Customer avatar
MICHAEL H March 30, 2020 10:25 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I'm seeing some inconsistencies - The Lost Heir doesn't have any section for what they were doing at the time of the murder. Additionally, each of the 8 characters has a cabin, but there's only 6 cabins on the map.
Customer avatar
Orla N April 01, 2020 1:25 pm UTC
CREATOR
The staff cabins are on the engine car, the first car on the map.
Customer avatar
Chris G April 08, 2020 10:28 am UTC
PURCHASER
Sorry for the confusion but may I ask Who is in the staff cabins? The veteran conductor and who else would be there?
Customer avatar
Orla N April 08, 2020 12:10 pm UTC
CREATOR
The loyal retainer in my mind, but this is for any given DM to decide. Maybe Bakker has his retainer and the Lost Heir in together depended on how you've worked out those backstories with your players.

To avoid the game being a script people had to memorise I only wrote it absolutes where I felt that was for the best and left room for players and DMs to make up the rest.
Customer avatar
Dan M February 24, 2020 4:03 pm UTC
PURCHASER
My PDF cuts off at 47 pages. Any help would be appreciated.
Customer avatar
Orla N February 24, 2020 5:47 pm UTC
CREATOR
After 47 PDF pages or after page 47? The document is 49 pages but that includes the cover art and front matter. Page 1 begins on the 3rd document page. So long as you've got all of the magical item appendix you've got everything. If not try redownloading.
Customer avatar
Dan M February 25, 2020 2:06 am UTC
PURCHASER
The last thing I see is at the bottom of page 47- the incomplete Survivor's Jerkin. So, there is no page 48 to complete the document. I re-downloaded and it came out the same. Thanks for any help! Dan
Customer avatar
Orla N February 25, 2020 5:13 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hi! Yeah, it's a two column format so the rest of that paragraph should be at the top of the next column on the same page.
Customer avatar
Dan M March 02, 2020 12:23 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I'll check and let you know. Thanks!
Customer avatar
Christopher D February 19, 2020 11:04 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hey everyone. I plan on running this on Friday. I just have a question. How do you handle the second murders? Any help on this would be appreciated.
Customer avatar
Orla N February 20, 2020 1:51 am UTC
CREATOR
How I've done it, and how I've seen others do it, is either in collaboration with a player (for example a Spouse that planned to kill the Lover as well from the beginning) or use an NPC to do it to either muddy the water or move the plot on.
Customer avatar
Christopher D February 21, 2020 2:56 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Thank you for your response. Maybe I'm just overthinking it but I'm struggling with how it will be carried out. Does the murderer need to make a check? Does the target just die? Sorry if I'm missing something obvious. Thanks for your help.
Customer avatar
Orla N February 21, 2020 7:15 pm UTC
CREATOR
Depends, if it's a player character it has to be played out as combat. If you're killing an NPC with an NPC or conspiring with a PC to kill an NPC, it might be easy to have them just die "off-screen"
Customer avatar
Jonah B February 13, 2020 3:17 pm UTC
This is everything you ever wanted Clue to be. In fact this is clue on Dragon dust. I Played this adventure as one of the PC and at first I was skeptical of playing a game with secrets mixed with Meta gaming. But we texted the DMs our secret actions and I’ve never seen so much deceit and betrayal around a table of friends. This module had the spouse and the secret lover screaming whore at eachother for 10 minutes, then 5 minutes later they decided to team up on the train conductor. This was a wild ride start to finish, we all added some extra details to characters and it fleshed our very well. we played with 7 PC and the DM played blue shield and the edge lord lost heir. Took us about 4 hours to run it completely and an hour to set up. It ended with 5 deaths, the secret lover and scholar were in on it together the whole time and blew up the entire train as it pulled into the station. They got away. Can’t recommend this enough. It’s a great introduction to the Eberron setting and the types of adventures you...See more
Customer avatar
TIMOFEY L January 20, 2020 5:32 pm UTC
PURCHASER
The adventure itself is very interesting, and I'm looking forward to running it.

However, the pregenerated statblocks contain too many typos. The Secretive Lover, for example, doesn't have Mantle of Majesty on his statblock. The AC of the first three NPCS are one higher than they should be, and so on.

I would highly recommend to check all of the class features the characters have since it can strongly impact the adventure.
Customer avatar
Danielle Y January 16, 2020 8:50 am UTC
PURCHASER
Heya - can someone direct me to where I can ask for help on running this module? I have a quick question that I need help with :)
Customer avatar
chris H January 10, 2020 2:21 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Spectacular blend of murder mystery and D&D. If you're looking for an explicitly laid out railroad (eeeeey) for your players to follow, this is not it. Orla gives us a reusable module where any of the 8 archetypes may be the killer, but it's up to the players and DM to fill in the details on the fly, like a typical murder mystery script. And it nails it.

Suggestions if you're looking to buy this product:

1) Stop reading and just buy it. Really. It's that good.
2) If you've already got characters, you can shoehorn the inciting incident around their backgrounds fairly easily. The point is that there's someone connected to their past, and they all share that connection, and it's brought them here. Obviously, the closer you can get to "as written" the easier time you'll have, but this is a great drop-in for a group traveling across the continent.
3) if you DON'T have characters, even better. It's got 8 pre-gens, and this is a great "getting to know the party"...See more
Customer avatar
Carra G December 13, 2019 3:01 am UTC
What player count would you suggest running this with?
Customer avatar
Orla N December 13, 2019 10:29 pm UTC
CREATOR
Anything from four to eight
Customer avatar
Walter B December 05, 2019 11:57 pm UTC
Would this be able to play as part of a campaign? I know it is meant more to be played as set characters and a player may even be the culprit, but could it be ran as a mystery for the players to solve?
Customer avatar
Orla N December 06, 2019 1:07 pm UTC
CREATOR
I've been talking to some folks about how you could introduce it into an existing campaign. The simplest way is probably to still assign an archetype to each PC and just change some of the backstory stuff. Bakker invited them on this lightning rail journey for a reason, some of them might have a history with him, others might have ideological opposition to him as an arms dealer, etc. Keep the NPCs as the archetypes they are and play out from there?
Customer avatar
Eric M December 05, 2019 7:02 am UTC
PURCHASER
typo found: Before the adventure beings the DM should:
beings = begins
hard to find with a spell check, since both are correctly spelled words. So no worries. (if I find more, I will compile a list, and then either edit this, or I can submit them elsewhere via personal email, or whatever you prefer best Orla N! I love what I have seen so far, but wanted to offer info where I see potential typos. Thanks again for all the hard work - and don't feel bad - typos happen (and they are that much harder to detect when they are real words, but out of place! :-)
Customer avatar
Eric M December 05, 2019 7:30 am UTC
PURCHASER
found a few more typos , but I have no idea what others were talking about - your English is actually very good.
---
error: 250ft around

corrected text:

by 250ft a round.

---
error:
the story to close

corrected:
to a close
(figure of speech) hard to catch if English is not your primary language.
---
Customer avatar
Eric M December 05, 2019 7:33 am UTC
PURCHASER
I was trying to keep these as short as possible, so it helps you find errors without giving out too much info on the story, or content... hopefully that was accomplished here. Thanks again for all the work you have put in on this Orla! about the only things I didn't find, but would love to see would be diagrams like the train, but for the documents mentioned including "schema's" or other diagrams... would love to see those added eventually if possible. Maybe someone else will create some hand outs for the adventure, who knows!
Customer avatar
Orla N December 05, 2019 11:28 am UTC
CREATOR
Hi Eric! Thanks, this is actually really helpful. Words that are correct but the wrong word are an old nemesis of mine. The updated file should be up shortly (with a little note of thanks in the credits). More schemas would be great. We didn't want to over-invest in the art before we knew if anyone would even like the game but it's a possibility.
Customer avatar
Holland E December 03, 2019 4:17 pm UTC
How much combat is in this?
Customer avatar
Orla N December 03, 2019 4:50 pm UTC
CREATOR
That entirely depends on how you run it. There's one situation set up as a combat encounter but it's flexible. As all the PCs and NPCs are suspicious of each other, combat could break out at any time or never, it will vary group to group
Customer avatar
Jakub S December 03, 2019 8:15 am UTC
Eberron adaptation of Agatha Christie's classic novel should be called "Murder on the Orien Express" ;)
Customer avatar
Orla N December 03, 2019 9:33 am UTC
CREATOR
It almost was! But we decided Eberron Express could attract people who hadn't got the chance to check the setting out yet.
Customer avatar
Style W December 02, 2019 11:40 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I am planning on running this for a group of people whom have never played DnD or any tabletop RPG before. Has anyone created any pre-gen character sheets for the archetypes?
Customer avatar
Orla N December 03, 2019 12:01 am UTC
CREATOR
They are included in Appendix 1 you're players would just have to name them! :)
Customer avatar
Style W December 03, 2019 12:49 am UTC
PURCHASER
Do you mean the NPC section?
Customer avatar
Orla N December 03, 2019 9:35 am UTC
CREATOR
I do yeah, sorry to be unclear, I've found for one-shots or new players that stat block format is actually easier to follow than an actual character sheet and it's how I ran two of the playtests.
Customer avatar
Ian S November 29, 2019 7:55 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I'm not even a 5e player and I was tempted into picking this up. I just found the concept of a murder mystery in which anyone could be the suspect really fascinating as an adventure idea, and something I might learn from for my own adventures. It doesn't disappoint: Murder on the Eberron Express is cleverly-conceived, logically laid out, easy to read and (I suspect) easy to use; albeit that I'm mostly planning to lift Orla's nifty ideas rather than run it directly. I love the Archetypes, the elegant construction of the mystery, and the way it captures the feel of Poirot while making full use of the pulp-arcane repertoire of Eberron.

Only complaint: the document is sorely in need of a professional copyediting pass. It's distracting enough that I would almost recommend hiring a copyeditor to rectify the various typos and formatting errors/inconsistencies in order that you can post an updated and improved version. This is clearly a labour of love, and I'd like to see that love well-supported by all...See more
Customer avatar
Orla N November 29, 2019 8:18 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hi Ian! Glad you like the story and design. I totally agree on the copyediting front, thought one editor could catch all but it seems not. There should be an updated version out sometime next week.
Customer avatar
Ian S November 29, 2019 8:49 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks, and congratulations on the great work!
Customer avatar
Miguel G December 01, 2019 2:46 am UTC
PURCHASER
I agree with this assessment as well.
Customer avatar
Dayna H December 03, 2019 8:30 am UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks for the heads up, guys. I will wait for the updated version then! :) Too many errors would drive me a little crazy lol. I look forward to trying it!
Customer avatar
Orla N December 03, 2019 11:15 am UTC
CREATOR
It's up now, a big part of the problem is me going from European English to American English
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49
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File Last Updated:
December 05, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on November 29, 2019.