One the latest trends WotC has been participating in lately is the publishing of adventure collections. This started a while back with Tales from the Yawning Portal and has continued most recently with Journeys Through the Radiant Citadel. With this in mind, it should be no surprise that the latest release for fifth edition D&D is another collection of adventure modules. This time, the book is titled Keys From the Golden Vault. This product features a number of heist-themed adventures that range from 1st level all the way to level 11. As usual, these adventures can be be adapted to fit nearly any existing campaign or setting. But, this book actually provides a unique background that ties them all together into one massive campaign.
Assuming this is the way you approach the book, the players will be introduced to the Golden Vault, a secret society that engages in rather “shady” activities (but always in the name of the greater good, of course). Every one of the adventures in this book focuses on a heist-type of mission. This usually involves sneaking into a specific location in order to obtain a valuable item. Of course, as you might expect, there’s plenty of obstacles, interesting characters, and other complications that end up getting in the way. For example, in most cases, the players are not the only adventurers seeking the item in question. There’s actually a competing party of rogues for players to cross paths with. This can make for some very interesting role playing encounters and some quite memorable game sessions!
One thing I noticed right up front is that a number of the adventures had a very planar theme to them. This is something that I found extremely intriguing. The outer planes are one of my favorite D&D playgrounds. I simply cannot wait for the upcoming Planescape release for 5E. After reviewing the material in this book, I can see several ways to easily transition from the adventures found here into a full-blown Planescape campaign later down the road.
I’m sure many DMs and players alike, will look at this book and immediately feel compelled to move on to the something else. But I would urge them to take a closer look. Yes, heist-themed adventures seem fairly niche. But, there’s quite a bit more going on here once you take a deeper look. This book is an interesting example of how WotC is slowly but surely building a new universe using individual products. All too often, players complain that WotC dedicates so much attention to the conversion of older material or to the resurrection of old campaign settings. This book represents something new and even though I’m an old grognard that pines for classic D&D, new material is exciting!
I’m not going to get into an extensive breakdown of each adventure included in this book. But trust me, there’s plenty of unique content here. Some of the highlights include a Nine Hells-themed casino, a train that cruises the multiverse, and even a quest to retrieve the legendary Book of Vile Darkness. (Like I said earlier, the Planescape ties are quite obvious in this book).
If you’re a DM looking for something different to serve up at your game table, this collection is one that you should seriously consider.