Storm King’s Thunder Thoughts and Review
I finally had a chance to sit down and give Storm King’s Thunder (which you can pick up yourself here on Amazon) a read. As with previous Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition adventure releases, Storm King’s Thunder can be played as a stand alone campaign that takes characters from level 1 to level 10 and emphasizes story and game play over experience points (XP) by use of the milestone method of leveling.
This means that when you achieve certain story arcs or goals your character, along with those of your party comrades, will level up at the DM’s discretion. Furthermore, if you already have characters of 5th level or so, the adventure gives the option to simply skip chapter 1 entirely and begin at one of the three chapter 2 story hooks with your pre-established characters. The product description reads as follows:
Giants have emerged from their strongholds to threaten civilization as never before. Hill giants are stealing all the grain and livestock they can while stone giants have been scouring settlements that have been around forever. Fire giants are press-ganging the smallfolk into the desert, while frost giant longships have been pillaging along the Sword Coast. Even the elusive cloud giants have been witnessed, their wondrous floating cities appearing above Waterdeep and Baldur’s Gate. Where is the storm giant King Hekaton, who is tasked with keeping order among the giants?
The humans, dwarves, elves, and other small folk of the Sword Coast will be crushed underfoot from the onslaught of these giant foes. The only chance at survival is for the small folk to work together to investigate this invasion and harness the power of rune magic, the giants’ weapon against their ancient enemy the dragons. The only way the people of Faerun can restore order is to use the giants’ own power against them.
The story, however, is much deeper and the stakes much higher than this brief blurb implies. Certainly, players will be faced with enormous challenges as they trek across the north and beyond facing countless hostile creatures before ever even coming face to face with the multitude of giant types.
The reasons for this upheaval are also staggering. An event called the Ordining has occurred and the very hierarchy of giant kind is thrown out of balance with all parties vying for control and status in the new way of things. These events occur following the events of previous adventures which have taken place but are not necessary to have played to enjoy Storm King’s Thunder to its fullest. However, players who have embarked upon the previous books Horde of the Dragon Queen and Rise of Tiamat will have a deeper meta understanding of the events that are unfolding here.
With each new adventure it seems the bar gets set higher and higher, and Storm King’s Thunder is no exception as it is shaping up to be the best yet. The current happenings were also the focus of the recent Acquisitions Inc Live Fathom Event from PAX a few weeks ago which can be viewed here below.
I was able to attend the theater screening in my home town and it was a lot of fun and while not formally a part of the Storm King’s Thunder module, it adds a lot of depth and life to the current state of the Forgotten Realms. This event also included a limited edition one shot adventure called Cloud Giant’s Bargain which is also an amazing short adventure which I’ll review at a later time.
If you haven’t picked up any of the previous official D&D adventures yet, there’s no better place to start than Storm King’s Thunder. Have you played it yet? I’d love to get your feed back about it here in our gaming forum if you have!
Lastly, here are some Amazon links to the products we talked about in this review (excluding the Cloud Giant’s Bargain). While we always recommend you support your Friendly Local Gaming Store (FLGS) when possible, purchasing items via our affiliates links support us and allow us to keep the lights on. Also, a few of those books are very cheap compared to MSRP so give us a click and check them out!
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