A monster on the verge of eating an adventurer.

Dragon's Crown

by Ramanan Sivaranjan on January 12, 2013

Tagged: darksun 2e nostalgia

Dragon's Crown

Over the holidays I decided to pick up some Dark Sun books I missed out in my youth: Elves of Athas, Dune Trader, and the adventure Dragon’s Crown.

I remember wanting Dragon’s Crown when it was announced by TSR oh so many years ago. It was probably the last piece of D&D I lusted after before I stopped playing the game. There were ads announcing its arrival in Dragon magazine and in the back of some of my other Dark Sun books. I’m guessing I didn’t buy it for one of the following reasons: it wasn’t stocked by Ron’s Comic Shop, my source for D&D in the 90s; it was too expensive; or I had stopped playing by the time it came out. The fact I probably didn’t need a high level adventure for a Dark Sun campaign I wasn’t actually running would have never entered into the equation.

Dragon’s Crown is a high-level epic adventure set in Athas. It involves psionics, sorcerer-kings, secret orders and other nonsense, and is exactly the sort of crazy boxed set adventure you could expect from mid-90s TSR. It’s actually made up of 7 interconnected mini-adventures. There is an 8th adventure that is full of little encounters you can intersperse throughout the series.

It’s interesting looking at an adventure like Dragon’s Crown after buying and reading so many “old-school” modules. Dragon’s Crown expects things to play out in a certain way, and there is a fair amount of exposition on what to do if your players try to get off the rails. Still, there are lots of maps and set pieces: I feel like you could use a lot of the adventure in a giant sandbox game.

You can get used copes of Dragon’s Crown for $20-$40 dollars by the looks of things, depending on what condition you want your copy to arrive in. When I was 14 that was some serious walking around money. Now? Not so much. It’s a shame I don’t have the spare time I did when I was 14 now.

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