The Magic of Ravnica Comes to Dungeons and DragonsDecember 12, 2018
“Where does it end?” Miros glanced down at his diminutive Goblin companion.
“What, the city?” the svelte green creature inquired, turning his gaze to the horizon.
Miros nodded in reply, his eyes cascading across the buildings and roadways that stretched as far as his vision could see.
“It doesn’t,” the goblin croaked. “The city goes on forever.”
And so dawns of Ravnica, Dungeons and Dragons‘ newest campaign setting, (introduced to Dungeons and Dragons in Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica), a sprawling city that covers the entirety of the known world; where 10 guilds, each with their own distinct role in society, are locked in an unending struggle for influence.
Guildmaster’s guide is an experiment of sorts for Wizards of the Coast. It represents their first attempt to combine two of their best known brands: Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: The Gathering (M:TG).
Ravnica, which began as a M:TG setting, is one of their most popular worlds, with multiple releases since 2005.
What is Ravnica?
The story of Ravnica is one of tenuous peace. 10,000 years ago, Ravnica was a world at war. The ten guilds were in open conflict and bloody battles raged across the realm. Eventually, an accord was struck, known as the guildpact. The guildpact set out the roles for each of the guilds within Ravnica, and peace lasted for milennia.
Eventually, as time passed, the power of the guildpact waned, and was broken. Chaos returned to Ravnica as the guilds once again began to wage war for supremacy of the realm…
Ravnica may prove fertile ground for adventures of all types, with the backdrop of the massive city, mystery at its fringes, and the tension between the guilds presenting myriad options for temporary alliances (or conflicts), which keeps the the story from getting stale.
For those that like additional character options, new races such as Minotaurs, Lodoxons (humanoid elephants), and Simic Hybrids (think Frankenstein) are included, and so are a host of really neat magic items.
Should you buy it?
The short answer is: probably, but it depends.
Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica is a campaign setting, with some character options included, so if you’re a DM that revels in creating worlds entirely from scratch, Ravnica’s utility may be limited for you.
However, if you’re a DM who loves to create their own stuff, but don’t have time to do everything from the ground up, Ravnica could be a great option. It includes hooks and a deep back story, as well as plenty of content. You could easily run a campaign using Guildmaster’s Guide as the setting, with all of its alleys and dark places, but add your own unique twist.
If you’re exclusively a player, and rarely DM, the utility of Ravnica is limited to the races; many of them are cool (the Vedalken is going to make an excellent Inquisitive Rogue) but you’ll need to decide if that’s enough to make it worth it for you.
If you’re a completionist, and need to own every book, you won’t be disappointed. Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica is a solid addition to Fifth and will fit well in your collection. Like all Dungeons and Dragons books of late, it is a high quality piece of work and contains tons of cool stuff.
The best part of Ravnica (like most of Fifth Edition) is that it doesn’t simply recycle old ideas: it’s clearly treading new ground and pushes Dungeons and Dragons in a different direction.
Ultimately, that’s the best part of Dungeons and Dragons’ limited release schedule: they’re able to focus their efforts on making every book unique because they don’t have to churn out content every month; it’s why the quality of every book is consistently high.
I, for one, can’t wait to see what they do next.
Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica is available in stores now
A copy of GGTR was provided for review
All images are courtesy and copyright Wizards of the Coast and used with permission