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Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil (Dungeons & Dragons d20 3.0 Fantasy Roleplaying Adventure, 4th to 14th Levels) Paperback – June 1, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast (June 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786918438
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786918430
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 8.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #626,212 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

The game designer
Monte Cook started working professionally in the game industry in 1988. In the employ of Iron Crown Enterprises, he worked with the Rolemaster and Champions games as an editor, developer, and designer. In 1994, Monte came to TSR, Inc., as a game designer and wrote for the Planescape and core D&D lines. When that company was purchased by Wizards of the Coast, he moved to the Seattle area and eventually became a senior game designer. At Wizards, he wrote the 3rd Edition Dungeon Master's Guide and served as codesigner of the new edition of the Dungeons & Dragons game. In 2001, he left Wizards to start his own design studio, Malhavoc Press, with his wife Sue. Although in his career he has worked on over 100 game titles, some of his other credits include Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil, The Book of Eldritch Might series, the d20 Call of Cthulhu Roleplaying Game, The Book of Vile Darkness, Monte Cook's Arcana Evolved, Ptolus, Monte Cook's World of Darkness, and Dungeonaday.com. He was a longtime author of the Dungeoncraft column in Dungeon Magazine. In recent years, Monte has been recognized many times by game fans in the ENnies Awards, the Pen & Paper fan awards, the Nigel D. Findley Memorial Award, the Origins Awards, and more.

The author
A graduate of the 1999 Clarion West writer's workshop, Monte has published two novels, The Glass Prison and Of Aged Angels. Also, he has published the short stories "Born in Secrets" (in the magazine Amazing Stories), "The Rose Window" (in the anthology Realms of Mystery), and "A Narrowed Gaze" (in the anthology Realms of the Arcane). His stories have appeared in the Malhavoc Press anthologies Children of the Rune and The Dragons' Return, and his comic book writing can be found in the Ptolus: City by the Spire series from DBPro/Marvel. His fantasy fiction series, "Saga of the Blade," appeared in Game Trade Magazine from 2005-2006.

The geek
In his spare time, Monte runs games, plays with his dog, watches DVDs, builds vast dioramas out of LEGO building bricks, paints miniatures, and reads a lot of comics.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 21 customer reviews
Let me say this, I was against a 3rd. edition of DnD from the beginning.
clint
Being an open book on the store shelf, it's easy for players to sneak a peek at what's in store for them.
Dustin Rector
Most DMs will appreciate the suggestions on running and modifying the adventure.
Mark Henderson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Arthur Milliken on July 2, 2001
Format: Paperback
Ah, memories...
I ran the original Temple of Elemental Evil back in the eighties, and never was I more pleased with how badly a game can crash my school grades and keep me up until the wee hours of the morning. The Temple of Evil was one of the most popular and lauded adventures ever for the popular Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (AD&D) game.
Well, Monte Cook is sure to make the "Module Hall of Fame" with this new epic set in the original lands of the evil elemental cult. Unlike some of the previous "return-to" modules, "Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil" is not a simple re-hashing of old material. Rather, it is a true sequel, and a worthy successor to the Elemental Evil legacy.
Set about fifteen years after the original adventure, "Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil" contains descriptions of several of the original people and places, so those familiar with the original material will find much to reminisce over. However, the tiny Village of Hommlet and its bulwark of heroes and villains have "grown up" now, and Monte Cook does an excellent job portraying the passage of time and fleshing out the new order of things in the quiet, wooded hills at the edge of the Viscounty of Verbobonc.
Furthermore, Monte Cook provides a compelling, rich history of the past events in the area, serving to bring new Dungeon Masters "up to speed" with the cult of Elemental Evil, but also providing new material and insight into events and forces only hinted at in the original work. After about fifteen minutes of reading, the prospective Dungeon Master, even if new to the game, can rest assured that she will not be missing any information vital to running this epic adventure.
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Dustin Rector on June 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
(This review is 90% spoiler safe -- maybe a couple of minor details revealed.)
It has been 15 long years since a party of adventurers last destroyed the Temple of Elemental... yet something stirs in its shadows once again.
This is not a 3rd edition gloss-over of the original -- It is an entirely new plot with lots of new territory to explore.
The old favorites are there, but different: Hommlet is growing, the moathouse is still standing in it's old, crumbly way, Burne and Rufus are leading the town, and of course, the old walls of the Temple of Elemental Evil still stand.
To keep the players on there toes a host of new magic items, monsters, races, and spells are scattered throughout the adventure (and collected nicely in the appendix).
But whereas the original adventure was a dungeon-crawl of epic scale, this product is "the backbone of a full campaign". Instead of trudging through endless dungeon hallways, this adventure will actually involve a bit more traveling, npc interaction, and imagine, just possibly, role playing.
Descriptions are good and solid. Most monsters are listed by hit points and page number in the Monster Manual with little variants noted as needed. Use of the 3rd edition templates have taken advantage of to provide interesting new surprises. The plot and story line is logical. NPCs are often listed with their own personal goals and motivations in addition to the plans of their cult. Splashed about are tips for handling parties that go astray, dally, or take things in an unexpected order. Suggestions are included for how The Temple reacts to attack, both immediate and long term recovery if the players wander afar.
This is not a nostalgic rehash. This is a new story, new bad guys and new characters.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By clint on July 12, 2001
Format: Paperback
I've been waiting for this release all summer, and I am well pleased. Let me say this, I was against a 3rd. edition of DnD from the beginning. Like many other DMs, I had all ready modified 2nd ed. to my liking and had worked out most of the rough edges on my own; however, like many other gamers, I couldn't resist picking up a copy of 3rd. ed. just to see what changes were made. I found myself liking it and believing that this is where DnD should have been twenty years ago.
That being said, "Return" is a step in the right direction of what made AD&D great to begin with: Compelling Adventures. "Return" is just that. It takes the original module T1-4, uses it as a background and advances the story line into an interesting campaign. I must say, I was skeptic when I received the book in my mailbox and at first peek saw that it has one hell of a massive dungeon crawl. Having read it, I agree with those who've reviewed this before me. Mr. Cook has done an excellent job of making this a dynamic,long, dungeon trek that if run properly will not be your standard, "Kick down door, slay monster, take treasure, repeat". The environment reacts to the characters. Several of the areas could be revisisted, and would not be the same encounter twice.
Overall, the story is solid. Old timers will enjoy finding refrences to several of the classic adventures from 1st ed. AD&D modules. The campaign takes players from 4th to 14th, but I've found that by starting earlier in the time line, and by expanding on the side trek options given in the book, I've been able to expand the adventure to begin at 1st level and go all the way to 14th. It is possible that events started with this campaign could take your players well beyond 14th with a little creativity on the DMs part as well.
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