Mordent, considerably more progressive than other domains by a distance. Curiously, its presence in the Mists is the fault of Strahd and Azalin. They devised a scheme to exploit an apparatus within the realm to free themselves from their imprisoned domains. This failed, sealing Mordent’s fate as well.
A fair share of oddities drift in and around the domain. The Darklord himself, Lord Wilfred Godefrey, certainly counts. Once a backstabbing aristocrat, he slew his own wife and daughter. He covered the incident up as it were an accident. But, their vengeful spirits drove him to suicide, forcing him into the ironic fate of a trapped spirit too. Since then, he has collected the souls that are beckoned to his house on Gryphon Hill. He has even used the trapped souls to his advantage at times, creating networks of informants and spies within his domain.
But, what is beyond the house? The Great Moors risk dense moss and trees to get lost in, while ghost towns just beyond prove to be less than salvation. The river ways and moors are mucky and thick, the perfect predatory grounds of the bog hound. A ways off the path was an off beat enclave of artists, creatives and non-establishment people who failed to fit in with the norm. Save for the waxworks, there is no more life here. No true life. Despite much of it burning down, wonders of art are mixed with the macabre to unveil an art show unlike anything before.
Author’s Note: Yet another double-feature! This time, the Domain of Mordent as the theme. The first creature is based off the Howls of the Night adventure, prominently featuring the Bog Hound. The second is from a homebrew pocket domain within the domain itself. It’s a meshing of wax museum horror tropes. And for added creepiness, some extra homage to one of my favorite parts of BioShock!
“Chroniclers from “some outside world” kept babbling about Shadow Powers and Fell planes. These people are fools. They know not of the mists, they know not of true nightmares. I live in them, just as I do in the rare dream. Some day, our people might escape through these gates, through the endless worlds of dream and into paradise. Perhaps these outlanders can take our place… As far as I’m concerned, they don’t truly exist anyway.” – a rather rude Aabber Shaman of the Nightmare Lands, according to Ramon.
The Mists house many untold and unspoken evils and perils. They’re usually the results of twisted minds and nefarious plots. Some are just sad souls that have long since fallen from grace. In more than one instance within the demiplane, some were merely evil souls from the beginning. Such a twisted menagerie exists within the Domains, it’s a miracle that they haven’t escaped to torment the outside worlds.
Brace yourselves and survive the monsters of the night!
Author’s Note: While Ramon bumbles in Ravenloft, let’s bring in a mixture of classic monsters and some new creations! Since I already have various Ravenloft critters in my Vampire and Were-beast books on DM’s Guild, I have not included them here. Also, please pardon the rampant song references…
Ravenloft! The Demiplane of Dread! The Mists! All names for the same prison dimension for the foulest in the multiverse! Those within the clutches of the Dark Powers must suffer, whether or not they deserve it. These Dark Powers overseen all sorts of truly awful Domains of Dread, plots of artificially constructed spaces where the Powers observe the truly damned in the places of their own damnation. The Darklords are those who have doomed themselves through acts of ultimate evil. They preside over the aforementioned domains to remind them of their sins. Usually, they don’t take kindly to visitors like myself.
Author’s Note: The Lovable World Traveling Bard vs. The Demiplane of Dread! I always love writing bits on Ravenloft and this is a good way of introducing some of my favorite domains to players who might not be as familiar with them. Of course, there are MANY domains that I wish I could ramble about, but I have only so much space and time to play with, unlike the Dark Powers. In fact, their ability is limitless! Plus, this is a good way of building up my own domains, Dawnsveil, Within the Woods and Feuer! (Yes, the second one is Evil Dead 1 & 2.) Keep an eye out for those new domains, by the way… Also I continued a piece cut from my prior post. The Black Lanterns was part of my Shadow Fell to Planescape conversion concept from before.
During the 4th Edition era of Dragon magazine, I recreated an idea for a 2E domain that I never got to run. Only a few notes were ever made, so it’s not like I got too much done in terms of progress. This was mostly because Wizards advertised an article search, including the domains of dread column. While I didn’t care too much for the 4E Shadowfell take on domains, I was more than eager to more or less make my own mark on Ravenloft. Needless to say, the concept was rejected and has long since stayed on numerous hard drives over the years. However, I’m gonna pilfer this grave and unleash the contents within! Here’s my attempt at fleshing out this concept for your enjoyment.
Note: This post will focus on the lore of the area. Stats are provided in a separate post coming shortly after. This will include the Darklord, his foil and various other creatures native to the realm. Also, I found out that my domain’s name shares the name of an expansion to MapleStory more or less. Granted, I don’t know if my idea predates it or not (2011, I have the rejection date from Wizards of the Coast somewhere!) Also included is a modest attempt at a map, albeit without more in depth tools.
FIND THE CURRENT VERSION OF DAWNSVEIL ON DM’S GUILD
IMAGE SOURCE: Colonial Tombstones of New England – Unpopradical (on Tumblr), Dawnsveil map – Myself
Ravenloft is property of TSR/Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro Inc. Made by Doctor Necrotic, for Doctor Necrotic media. All rights reserved.
Even great evils can fall from grace or power. However, that isn’t to say they aren’t inherently powerful beings. In many cases, diving too deep into their tainted powers may make them stronger. In many cases, these pitiful creatures are proof that depravities and wicked ways rarely turn out for the better. All the same, these wretched terrors find their own boons in further exploring the path of evil.
Author’s Note: I was tossing an idea in my head for a little bit and figured, sure why not? By the way, the degenerated vampire might make an appearance in something else relatively soon. Let’s just say a successor to a previous book project of mine is in the works.
Elementals from the Demiplane of Dread
The Elemental planes contain forces that embody raw and natural powers. The denizens of these realms equally represent those forces. The four prime planes represent basic elements that transcend the multiverse. All around, these beings tend to be neutral in nature or unable to comprehend alignment as a whole. However, the multiverse is vast and has methods of warping the essence of the planes themselves. The Elemental Planes are no different in this regard. One such example of this is the Demiplanes of Dread, known to some as “Ravenloft.” This dark prison dimension is ruled by a mysterious power called “The Mists.” It is unknown what such entities are, in a similar vein as Sigil’s protector known as “The Lady of Pain.” When the mists touch upon an elemental plane, they forge a strange demiplane copy that fits in with the darkness and despair of the Dread realm.
Resentful Corruptions of Nature
The so-called “Dread Elementals” are the results of such sinister mingling. These fallen elementals are empowered by same wickedness that spurs the defiled darklords and depraved denizens onward. Unlike traditional elementals, these shadowy doubles are openly malicious and will appease the mists in one way or another. This is because they hate what they are. The mists have transformed them into sick minions for their bidding, giving them the slightest inkling of awareness to render them mad. In their hatred, they lash at those who extend their mockery of an existence. Other times, they target those who dare to oppose either their goals or the goals of the dark powers.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: I love Ravenloft, oh so much. Not to mention, the elementals don’t really get enough love… even with the decent adventure rolled out by Wizards early last year. Sure, I’ve made a handful of elemental beings, but it’s always fun to craft some more. Or rather in this case, continue my theme of simple modification to create a new monster. And what better way to close out my Gothic theme with a set of monsters from a Gothic Campaign Setting! I’ve learned quite a bit during this theme alone. However, it’s time to move on to bigger and better things. Since this one was a quicky, I’ll have something by the end of the week for you bodaks and ghouls out there. I’m mostly gonna dabble with some ideas in the next few weeks and prepare for my own RPG Blog Carnival theme in August, “Super Science and Sorcery!”