Great Danger Wrought in Secrecy
Legendary forgemasters now serve an evil warlord and his dark purpose. Their hammers ring upon anvils dedicated to remaking a terrible weapon that was destroyed in ages long past. As the very fate of the world is being shaped, only the strongest heroes can shatter the diabolical plan.
"Lord of the Iron Fortress" is a stand-alone adventure for the Dungeons & Dragons game, the seventh adventure in a series of eight designed to take players from the beginner to advanced levels of play (although no other adventures need be played to play this one). This adventure contains an additional 16 pages of content for the same price as earlier adventures. Designed to challenge 15th-level D&D heroes, it opens the perilous gateway to planar travel.
To use this accessory, a Dungeon Master also needs the Player's Handbook, the Dungeon Master's Guide, and the Monster Manual.
"Lord of the Iron Fortress" by Andy Collins was the seventh adventure path module published by Wizards of the Coast for 3rd edition Dungeons & Dragons, following "Deep Horizon" in a loosely linked eight-adventure series. It is a plane-hopping tour de force involving efreeti blades, draconic deep dwarves, interdimensional armies, slave spirits, and allies of pure order.
Plans in the Planes. This adventure introduces 15th-level characters to extensive planar travel, bringing them from town to city to the plane of Acheron. The adventure combines investigation, tactics, and a planned assault on a great warlord in a scenario that allows the player characters to take the offensive. It dangles the infinite planes as a plot thread, and the module makes a great jumping-off point for further planar adventures.
The players travel first to the gate town of Rigus on the Outer Planes, and from there to the massive floating cubes of Acheron in order to attack the Iron Fortress of Imperagon.
Well Constructed, Well Designed. As is usual for the modules in this series, the NPCs and monsters of "Iron Fortress" are flawlessly constructed and extremely capable. Players will want to be cautious of rushing headlong into encounters; poor tactics can result in fairly unfortunate party fatalities. The design of the Iron Fortress itself is also well done, with internal architecture that requires heroes to backtrack and retrace their steps as they conquer and clean out the site. The adventure is fun and straightforward to DM, with multiple opportunities for PC roleplaying with both foes and potential allies.
Just the Facts, Ma'am. "Lord of the Iron Fortress" uses locations from Planescape, but shifts away from the heavily philosophical, role-playing-filled adventures introduced in that 2nd edition D&D campaign setting. This, unfortunately, can make it a bit of a dry read: The writing style very much downplays the weirdness and wonder of the outer planes as they have been described elsewhere. This change is great for people who didn't care for Planescape's rather stylized prose (and I'll be the first to admit that my opinion here is biased), but it certainly reduces the sense of majesty and epic scale that has traditionally gone hand in hand with adventure in the outer planes.
With flavor thus minimized in the module itself, it's up to the DM to add it back in where desired. Not doing so might well result in a fundamentally fun and exciting adventure, but not necessarily one that particularly needed to occur on the outer planes.
Divination 1, Secrets 0. The adventure has several pages near the beginning of the adventure which discuss high-level divination effects, how much information they provide, and methods for protecting against them. Divination spells often confound and annoy DMs because they can circumvent both secrets and encounters, so it's good to see this advice laid out for the DM.
Seventh of Eight.This 15th-level adventure is the seventh and penultimate in the eight-module adventure path:
- The Sunless Citadel
- The Forge of Fury
- The Speaker in Dreams
- The Standing Stone
- Heart of Nightfang Spire
- Deep Horizon
- Lord of the Iron Fortress
- Bastion of Broken Souls
About the Creators. Andy Collins joined Wizards of the Coast in 1996, working on Alternity and the Star Wars Roleplaying Game before moving to Dungeons & Dragons. He is the author of the 4th edition Player's Handbook.
About the Product Historian
History and commentary of this product was written by Kevin Kulp, game designer and admin of the independent D&D fansite ENWorld. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to firstname.lastname@example.org.