The next D&D book is about gothic horror setting Ravenloft, this is what's in it

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(Image credit: Wizards of the Coast)

You may be familiar with Ravenloft from the classic videogames Strahd's Possession and Stone Prophet, or more recently from Curse of Strahd—one of the most popular adventures for the current fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons, which sends players to the cursed dimension on a vampire hunt. The setting is about to get a refresh with a supplement for the tabletop RPG called Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft coming out this month.

Thanks to Lysa Penrose on Twitter, we've seen the contents of this 256-page book. Inside are new options for players, making the half-vampire dhampir, hag-transformed hexblood, and just straight-up undead called reborn into playable lineages. (The reborn is how you get to make your own version of the Nameless One from Planescape: Torment.) A couple of new subclasses, backgrounds, and new rules for Dark Gifts are in there too.

The meat of the text is taken up describing the Domains of Dread, lands where the cursed Darklords rule like Strahd's Barovia and The Carnival, for all your creepy clown needs. A new domain named "Cyre 1313, The Mourning Rail" is mentioned, and since Cyre is a kingdom from the steampunk-ish D&D setting of Eberron I'd put money on this one being a ghost train.

After that comes a section on running horror adventures, complete with tools for "fear and stress" and a sample adventure called The House of Lament. Finally, the bestiary is full of creepy classics like the nosferatu, loup garou, and jiangshi as well as a solid variety of camp creature-feature stars like the brain in a jar and a simple "swarm of zombie limbs".

Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft will be out on May 18.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.