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One Night Strahd
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Gothic adventure from a veteran team, with over 200 illustrations, maps, and charts. Presenting...

One Night Strahd: Queer Vaporwave Gothica

Precise and messy as a vampire bite, One Night Strahd (ONS) delivers the spectacle and catastrophe of gothic horror as a consistent and fast-paced short campaign for D&D 5e. It condenses and remixes the 200+ hour campaign of Curse of Strahd into a replayable adventure weighing in at 525 pages with over 200 illustrations, maps, and charts. With careful attention to the design of exploration, combat, and role-playing opportunities, our goal has been to make something for every DM and every table. After three years of extensive testing, we're proud to share this explosive adventure with you.

What's inside?

  • 17 major encounters, including two hidden bosses.

  • An entire set of fast narrative encounters, replacing the classic random encounters while preserving their feel and spirit.

  • Enormous set-piece boss fights, including a wolf the size of a mansion and deadly assassin-cavalry.

  • Puzzles, secrets, and sprawling exploration-based encounters called Hunts.

  • A more accessible approach to designing large encounter spaces, with plenty of well-tested examples.

  • A novel reincarnation mechanic that helps make sure no one gets left out at the table.

  • A powerful new way to use inspiration that can be reused in any setting. 

ONS can be run a few different ways:

  • As a Mini-campaign: Running roughly 16 hours, generally broken into four sessions.

  • As a Event game: Running roughly 12 hours, suitable for a live-stream or holiday extravaganza.

  • Both versions include rules for playing either with one or two full parties of 6th level characters.

  • Optional scoring mechanics are included for those who wish to run this at an event for multiple groups, just like the old days.

16 hours? 

Data from D&D Beyond as well as other sources suggests that most campaigns end after less than seven 3-4 hour sessions. That means most campaigns end around the 25 hour mark, while most “full-length” campaign or adventure books clock in at 50+ hours. This means there’s a definite need for shorter experiences. To be extremely clear, it’s not better or worse to make a shorter campaign, but there weren’t a lot of them out there. So we made one!

Esmerelda

Why this? How big is the book?

ONS is what we wanted to play. It’s easy to run and requires very little prep without compromising on depth or fun. We wanted to make an neo-noir adventure that anyone could run, one that dealt with death, hope, queerness, love, and the horror of regret. This is gothic horror by way of neo-noir with a breakneck narrative, a sprawling castle, and massive set-piece battles. In terms of raw size, ONS is 525 pages and just over 100,000 words with tons of lush illustrations by Evangeline Gallagher accentuating an almost completely unique bestiary along with handouts and flowcharts for all major encounters to assist with legibility and speed of play. The campaign may be shorter but the book is actually larger than Curse of Strahd.

Gertruda & Sesame

Queerness?

It matters to people we care about, including members of The Hedra Group. Practically speaking, we have very few characters to work with, so adding a small love story outside of the doomed romances of the Zaroviches meant adding a queer romance. Additionally, a large portion of proceeds after recoup of development costs will be donated to the Pride Foundation.



Oh, and you fight a wolf the size of a house and a dracolich carrying a vampire's coffin.

The Pallbearer Dragon

Just remember, death is rarely the end in Barovia.


 
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Reviews (2)
Discussions (8)
Customer avatar
Noppajorn H November 22, 2021 7:06 am UTC
So is this a module for only level 6 adventurers? I'm thinking of adding something after I run LMoP with my friends, and I'm debating between this and a homebrew campaign. I saw in another comment this doesn't have a level progression, instead using magical items.
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 22, 2021 7:15 pm UTC
CREATOR
I think it'd scale pretty well up or down, and LMoP ends at level 5. I recommend leveling them up between Acts, which means that Act 1 will be a bit harder than normal, Act 2 will be Level 6, and Act 3 could be Level 7 if they struggled with Act 2. Our default design for ONS doesn't use level progression because it's designed to be run in 1 or 2 sittings, and the pacing cost was a bit high given that the L6-L7 jump brings a ton of new abilities with it.
Customer avatar
Fanny T November 19, 2021 6:50 pm UTC
Hi! How newbie DM friendly is this? If I've never ran a campaign?
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 20, 2021 12:17 am UTC
CREATOR
I'd say it's reasonably friendly to a new DM. I'm not sure it'd be my very first pick for a new DM, since it's mechanically intricate in places, but on the other hand, the addition of combat flows really reduces the amount of prep you need for running combat.

Originally, we'd intended this as a second campaign, basically immediately after Lost Mines of Phandelver, but we've had new DMs run this with good overall success, especially DMs who have played a good amount of D&D as a character. It can definitely work.
Customer avatar
Jimmy F November 17, 2021 3:09 pm UTC
Hi! Your product is featured in my latest YouTube video. Feel free to use quotes from it or even the timestamp link as the video on your catalog page if you want. Also please signal boost (share) the video if you can (and haven't already). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xK4XXX6tiaI
Customer avatar
Robert K November 17, 2021 12:47 pm UTC
Maybe a stupid question, but do you need the Curse of Strahd book to run this?
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 17, 2021 7:17 pm UTC
CREATOR
Right now, there are three magic items from it that we rely on. Other than that, it's independent. We'll be releasing replacements for those items sometime soon, once we've recovered from the process of getting this thing out the door. Turns out, 525 pages is a lot of book.

In the meantime, the following replacements will work as stop-gaps:
Thighbone of Saint Markovia becomes mechanically identical to Mace of Disruption
The Sun Sword becomes mechanically identical to the Sun Blade
The Holy Symbol of Ravenkind becomes mechanically identical to the Ring of Spell Storing except it acts as a holy symbol and emits 10ft of dim sunlight while holding a spell.
Customer avatar
Casey B November 16, 2021 11:31 pm UTC
PURCHASER
One Night Strahd is an amazingly well thought out module. It's clear that a lot of passion and care went into this project. You can see it in the carefully crafted encounters and story telling as well as in the amazing illustrations that are filled through out the book. 10/10!
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 17, 2021 10:12 am UTC
CREATOR
We're glad you like it!
Customer avatar
NEIL O November 16, 2021 9:56 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I've been looking for this exact type of thing!

Any chance we could order a printed copy of this?
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 16, 2021 11:44 pm UTC
CREATOR
When PoD becomes available, we'll take a look to see if we can make it work!
Customer avatar
NEIL O November 17, 2021 4:31 am UTC
PURCHASER
Sweet! The artwork alone demands this be printed so I can take it around and show it off.
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 17, 2021 10:15 am UTC
CREATOR
Evangeline is an absolutely stellar artist, and we're so happy we were able to find them - they really captured the essence of the story we wanted to tell with their unique art style. They do sell prints of their other artwork elsewhere if you want to support them separately - but hopefully, we'll be able to do PoD and get hard copies of ONS out to folks who want them!
Customer avatar
Aaron L November 19, 2021 3:34 am UTC
PURCHASER
Definitely also interested in getting a physical copy of this. What's unavailable about it, the platinum restriction?
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 19, 2021 3:42 am UTC
CREATOR
The platinum restriction is the primary issue, but at 525 pages, PoD gets quite expensive. We'll see what we can do!
Customer avatar
Matt C November 16, 2021 7:44 pm UTC
Curious. You say 1 or 2 groups of 6th level. Does the adventure have level progression? What level do you expect characters to be in the final encounter?
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 16, 2021 8:17 pm UTC
CREATOR
It doesn't have level progression, since the pacing is very tight and there's not a good cut point for milestones. It uses items to mock-out level progression, much like some of the portions of the original Curse of Strahd. There's a couple other drivers as well.

It runs fine with 1 group, and there's some information on how to scale the encounters for single group or variable group size. If you've any questions about scaling a specific encounter, just ask!
Customer avatar
Taylor S November 12, 2021 8:18 pm UTC
PURCHASER
This is an impressive feat of design, layout, and writing. The creators clearly gave this product a ton of love, effort, and consideration. Bravo!
Customer avatar
Hedra G November 12, 2021 10:54 pm UTC
CREATOR
Very much appreciated! We're very proud of what we created - it started as just a fun thing to make for our friends on Halloween, and ended up with us pulling in talent from all over the world. It's a really humbling experience to be able to show this off to everyone now, so for you and for anyone else who comes here and takes a chance on it, we appreciate you.
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File Last Updated:
November 09, 2021
This title was added to our catalog on November 11, 2021.