R5 5

A Guide to Transylvania (1996)

This is my pick for the most ridiculous Ravenloft supplements: A Guide to Transylvania (1996), one of the very few supplements for the Victorian-era box set Masque of the Red Death. That incredibly ugly and disappointing cover does a great job of setting expectations.

It’s just so odd. I know Masque is set in our world, and using D&D classes and such in our world is pretty bizarre, but then to just…set a whole campaign in Transylvania? I understand why that would seem like a peanut butter and chocolate idea at first glance, but after half a minute I feel like clearer heads should prevail. Evidently not.

What you get is something akin to Call of Cthulhu’s location sourcebooks for like Cairo and Tibet and on (equally opportunity snoozing: those books are some of the dullest in the Call of Cthulhu line). You get history, geography, cultural info. There’s some adventure hooks, some of which draw on real world stuff, some are entirely fictional. There’s secret societies. There are attribute blocks for Dracula and Van Helsing and more (did you guess Jonathan Harker was Lawful Good?). I guess that’s the draw? I dunno. Weird.

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