Uninvited Guests, the third release of this season of D&D Adventurers League adventures is a gem. It is one of the most impressive adventures I have DMed over the years. It is designed for 3-7 characters of levels 1-4, and plays in about two hours; it is also a masterclass in how to write short adventures.
Short adventures, especially for organised play, are often very linear, with player actions having very limited consequences. It’s a drawback of the form. Not so here: the players have several opportunities to make meaningful decisions, and some of those decisions can change the entire course of the adventure. The two tables that ran the adventure at our store both made different choices and the stories we told afterwards were very different. This is some achievement!
The adventure revolves around the village of Parnast, which was first introduced to 5E players in Hoard of the Dragon Queen. Parnast had been subjugated by the Cult of the Dragon in that adventure, and now, with the cult defeated, the village is struggling. Game is scarce and morale is low. With the delivery of a statue to the local shrine (as related in The Black Road), the village’s tavern-keeper sees the opportunity to lift the spirits of the villagers by holding a feast – but a feast without meat would be a poor experience. Thus, the adventurers are asked to go on a hunting expedition.
Parnast is excellently realised. Its poor state is depicted in the food served to the adventurers and the villagers, the simmering resentments about collaborators, and the grief of folk who have lost loved ones. Several villagers are described, and all are interesting and allow the players to learn from different viewpoints how the villagers are coping with their problems.
The adventure features a significant amount of role-playing, although combat is not neglected. The situations allow the personalities of the player characters to affect the outcome; at my table, the players took inspiration from their faction allegiances to inform their role-playing and decision-making.
I found a few minor editing mistakes in the adventure, but none of major consequence. The maps are basic but perfectly legible.
Overall, this is one of the best adventures I’ve seen released for Dungeons & Dragons. It’s short, offers meaningful decisions, and is consistently entertaining. This one I highly recommend.