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10 Dungeons & Dragons Campaigns That Would Make Great Movies

Refer to them as dungeon crawls, modules or campaigns, you can't play the original RPG without them. Many stories have come from the adventures written for the original RPG; Dungeons & Dragons.

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These plots, settings and characters work so well that screenwriters often steal them. Here are a few more notable D&D campaigns that would make great movies.

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10 The Assassin’s Knot

By Leonard Lakofka, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, 1983.

Setting for a movie is important and that's why this module would make a nice screenplay. It was one of the earliest adventures to lead party members through a town and castle as opposed to a classic dungeon. Hunt for a murderer before they get to you and your companions. There are also very few monsters. Even supernatural creatures are humanoid.

The story stands alone, but it's actually part 2 of 3 for scriptwriters interested in something with sequel potential. Horror and thriller are great genres and the ticking clock included in the plot works great on film.

9 Castle Ravenloft

By Tracy and Laura Hickman, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, 1983.

Reactions to the Dragonlance era of Dungeons & Dragons are mixed but Ravenloft remains a favorite. The name refers to both a setting for adventures and a specific module that is often distinguished by the name Castle Ravenloft. This Gothic adventure includes crypts, dungeons and other venues in addition to the castle of the vampire Strahd von Zarovich.

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The villain could be tracked and defeated by a party or a single hero if you need versatility with casting choices.

8 The Forge of Fury

By Richard Baker, Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition, 2000.

The Forge of Fury is a classic dungeon crawl with a compelling story and impressive villains. This module is often recommended for beginning Dungeon or Game Masters because of the focus on the adventure and typical fantasy setting.

This would bring a sequence that's usually a backstory into the foreground. It's not just a tale for D&D nerds, either. Audiences have an appetite for this subject matter. We saw an impressive forge in Avengers: Infinity War and the epic Lord of the Rings franchise introduced us to the world of malevolent orcs and Dwarven smithing.

7 Tomb of Horrors

By Gary Gygax, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st Edition, 1978.

The storyline is somewhere between the horror of Ravenloft and the dark adventure of The Forge of Fury with a godlike undead being at the end. Unlike those modules, however, Gygax wrote Tomb of Horrors as a way to test high-level characters that were willing to take some chances to win epic gear and experience points.

People love superhero movies and this adventure would mix that genre with the world of fantasy. There's also the occult angle with a demilich, a thrilling new kind of undead in a world crowded with zombies and vampires.

6 The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan

By Harold Johnson and Jeff R. Leason, Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, 1980.

Movies about adventures in an exotic land with some magic and mysticism thrown in are always hot. This can cover a lot of ground, from the Indiana Jones franchise to movies like The Mummy or Anaconda. The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is a combination of all of the above.

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The setting in the module is part of the Greymane world but it's inspired by Meso-American architecture. That means a picky studio executive can choose a real-world setting if that's what test audiences prefer.

5 Dwellers of the Forbidden City

By David Cook, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st edition, 1981.

If you like the idea of The Assassin's Knot and the finale of Ravenloft but think the ideas need a more exotic location, think about an adaptation of Dwellers of the Forbidden City. Your adventuring party travels through a small town and a steaming jungle filled with enemies until finally reaching the horrors of the Forbidden City.

The story includes some political intrigue and dramatic tension along with some big boss fights and action scenes. A treasure and a rescue are also a part of the storyline, and you have the making of a great adventure movie.

4 The Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh

By Dave J. Browne with Don Turnbull, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, 1981.

Marketing executives that like to reach out to new audiences while using a familiar name that D&D fans will recognize should invest in The Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh. The plotline of this story is broken into two parts intended to be played consecutively. A studio could make one movie or two depending on the amount of investment it can handle.

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The haunted mansion, the ghost ship and the mysterious alchemist could be a thriller or a horror movie that appeals to everyone while still using a lot of classic D&D tropes. The port city of Saltmarsh is a pirate-themed setting with plenty for both landlubbers and sailors can appreciate.

3 The Lost City

By Tom Moldvay, Dungeons and Dragons, 1982

This module mixes treasure hunting, political intrigue and ancient myth, things that all look great on film. What makes this module unique is how it was deliberately written to give the Dungeon Master a lot of freedom regarding a unique setting and storyline. Most of the adventure takes place within a large pyramid, but a creative DM or screenwriter could also use the city or desert as settings.

The Lost City is a story intended more for adults, as it tackles real-world problems like civil rights, religious differences and drug addiction along with fantastic monsters and magical powers.

2 Dead Gods

By Monte Cook, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, 2nd edition, 1997

The trend of satire in movies isn't going anywhere, and this module pokes a lot of fun at the whole genre, specifically Dungeons & Dragons. As one of the more recent modules on the list, Dead Gods has enough D&D lore to look back on to make fun of itself.

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The whole adventure is about the death and resurrection of a god. The hyperbolic backstory of gods and demons locked in a death grip covers a painfully simple plot; a group of heroes playing diplomat to save a city. Each story is intended to contrast the other with comedic results. Some versions don't reveal the underlying plan of the gods until the very end, of at all.

1 The Standing Stone

By John D. Rateliff,  Dungeons & Dragons, 3rd edition, 2001

Something for the young adults and their parents, the central character of this module is a young sorcerer named Dyson. He attains great power when he discovers a secret group of ancient Druidic standing stones. Depending on how a director or writer wants to handle it, Dyson can be the lone hero, the leader of a party, a member of a party or even the villain.

Studios like versatility. That also applies to the plot, which could be a thriller, horror or fantasy. It can stand alone or as part of a franchise. The Standing Stone is the fourth of eighth adventure that starts with The Sunless Citadel and ends with Bastion of Broken Souls.

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