Descending into Fun: Dungeons and Dragons Releases its Newest AdventureSeptember 17, 2019
It’s been a long time coming, but at last, Dungeons and Dragons players are going to Hell. Today, D&D launches its newest adventure: Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus, and it is…magnificent.
A small selection of media and gamers got a sneak peek at Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus earlier this year at #DNDLIVE2019 #TheDescent (read more here) and what we saw, was impressive.
What we now have in our hands? Even better than we could have hoped.
Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus is a sprawling adventure that takes a group of heroes from relative anonymity in the City of Baldur’s Gate, and thrusts them into the middle of the blood war between demons and devils.
Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus will take players from level 1 to 13, reflecting the harrowing journey they face from the material plane all the way to the depths of hell, Avernus itself.
It’s all very weighty stuff. Particularly if a character is good aligned. Is spending a soul coin, and thereby permanently erasing that soul from existence, to power a war machine worth it?
Characters will be forced to make difficult choices throughout the adventure, and that is by far one of its greatest appeals: it offers incredible roleplaying opportunities, as well as enjoyable combat encounters.
Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus is sure to satisfy the tastes of both hack’n’slashthusiasts and roleplafficianados alike. (I just came up with these terms; use them and you owe me a nickel!)
Should you buy it?
Usually, “it depends.” But with Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus, arguably the best Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition adventure released, my usual qualifier doesn’t quite cut it.
If you know, for certain, that you will *never* serve as a Dungeon Master for your friends, you’re not a completionist, and you aren’t into some of the most innovative Dungeons and Dragons art yet produced…this book isn’t for you.
But you’re the only one. You’ll play it, you’ll love it, but you don’t need to buy it.
For everyone else though? YES. Buy it.
The art, is phenomenal.
The rules for development of infernal war machines are unique, fun, and eminently stealable for home campaigns. I mean really, who doesn’t want to ride a tank from hell? The only question is…will you add a flamethrower, or an infernal screamer?
If you ever think you might decide to try your hand at DMing, this is the book you’d want to run.
For people who exclusively homebrew? I’d encourage you to leaf through this story…you may find that this is one you’d like to run from cover to cover.
Additionally releasing with Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus is an accessory called Dice and Miscellany.
To be clear: it is NOT a must have to run a great Avernus campaign…but gosh, it would help.
Obviously, it comes with dice (which are nice) and the box forms two felt-lined dice trays (also nice), but the reason this product is so useful is that it also contains a fold-out map of Avernus (for players…if you’re in the mood to share), and double sided-encounter cards that provide details on the different combatants in the blood war. No need to leaf through a book to show a picture of the enemies (like the abyssal chicken) just flash the custom designed cards.
It is a hella cool product, and one that draws curiosity whenever it hits the table.
My only complaint about the Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus Dice and Miscellany is that the price point is slightly high at 24.95 US, 33.95 Can (ouch). My complaint on price is in no way an indictment of the quality of the product, which is very high, it’s just that it would be a bit more accessible for most gamers if were slightly cheaper.
This is definitely a product that not every player at the table needs (though the dice trays are fairly durable) but if your group is running a Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus campaign, it’s a VERY nice to have for the visual accessories to add life to the game. Everyone can chip in a few bucks to treat their DM, right?
I’ve never been more excited for a Dungeons and Dragons release than I was for Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus…and I am not disappointed.
Not at all.
And PS: if you need an extra player for your game? Count me in.
Baldur’s Gate: Descent Into Avernus is available wherever Dungeons and Dragons products are sold, and digitally on D&D Beyond
Review copies of Descent Into Avernus and Dice and Miscellany were provided for this review
Images are copyright Wizards of the Coast and Geekz United, and used with permission.