Board game reviews, strategy tips & session reports
Tomb of Annihilation is an adventure for Dungeon and Dragons 5th Edition. In this module, set in the jungle, the PCs must stop a death curse.
You start the adventure by being teleported to Chult by a former adventurer whom as raised from the dead. She has been getting weaker and it seems anyone ever raised is wasting away.
The first chapter of this book deals with getting the PCs into the quest and then describes the city she teleports them to, Port Nyanzaru. There they can gamble, but supplies and find a guide.
Chapter two focuses on travel and the exploration of Chult and what it takes to survive its harsh terrain and its inhabitants. There are details about the 14 different locations you can visit. If the DM has a particular location in mind they can move and switch sites to suit their desires.
The Forbidden City, Omu, is full of dangers and hard to find. Once there the PCs will find pieces to the puzzle of the Nine Gods. To enter the Tomb of the Nine Gods the PCs must discover nine puzzle cubes in nine trapped shrines. But others are trying to locate and retrieve them first.
In chapter four the PCs enter the Fane of the Night Serpent to get the last Puzzle Cube taken by Raz Nsi, an evil yuan-ti. The PCs must find explore the fane, find the cube, and head back to the Omu to enter the Tomb of the Nine Gods.
The last chapter weighs in at 65 pages. It is full of the traps, creatures and the gods that inhabit the Tomb of the Nine Gods. There are some interesting treasures, but it will not be easy for PCs to survive the tomb. They must destroy the Soulmonger as it is responsible for the death curse, but when they do, the powerful lich Acererak shows up for revenge.
Appendix A gives the PCs two new backgrounds to choose, Anthropologist or Archaeologist. Appendix B gives random encounter tables and the details about those encounters. Appendix C has information on some of the discoveries PCs can make, including flora, fauna, and magic items. Monster and NPC stat blocks make up Appendix D. Appendix E has 24 player handouts. And Appendix F gives you th characteristics of the nine trickster gods.
The Tomb of Annihilation is a partial re-make of the Tomb of Horrors for 5e. It is a sandbox adventure set in a new locale. The featured mysteries, terrain and creatures of the jungle are a bit different from those encountered on the Sword Coast.
This book looks great. The artwork and layout are well done as usual. The organization is a bit hit and miss, but generally you should be able to find what you are looking for. The included maps are fantastic and can help get your players more immersed in Chult.
Some DMs will like the sandbox nature of this module while others won’t. If you are a new DM this adventure might be on the harder side to run. But if you have some experience you will enjoy the freedom you and your players have.
You and you group should also know this is a deadly adventure. There are traps and encounters that can quickly kill characters. Be sure your group is aware of this up front. Some PCs don’t like losing characters especially when it can happen because of low die rolls.
The Tomb of Annihilation is another well-made published adventure for DnD 5e. It adds a lot of new jungle dangers. And though it might play better with more experienced groups, there are elements in here all DMs could add to their campaigns.