I’m fairly late to this get together. I’m undecided if there may be something left to be stated about Arcadia Problem 27, i.e. Sharkadia, that hasn’t already been stated. However I’m going to strive anyway. I imply, actually, with regards to reviewing content material, I have to hold shifting or really feel like I’m going to die. Wait, isn’t {that a} trait generally related to one thing else?


I used to be offered a assessment copy of this situation, however I’m additionally signed up for MCDM’s Patreon, so I additionally obtain a private copy as effectively. I’ve not had the chance to play or run any of the fabric on this situation, however I’m very snug with D&D 5e each as a participant and as a DM. Additionally, it’s most likely value mentioning that pirates are actually, as they are saying, my shit.

Arcadia Problem 27

Design & Manufacturing

Managing Editor Hannah Rose
Authors Willy Abeel, James Introcaso, Gwendolyn Marshall
Editors Scott Fitzgerald Grey, Amber Litke, Sadie Lowry
Playtest Director Lars Bakke
Structure Jen McCleary
Title Emblem Tom Schmuck
Accessibility Chris Hopper
Neighborhood Coordinator John Champion
Buyer help Bobby McBride


Artwork Administrators Nick De Spain, Hannah Rose
Cowl Artist Veronica O’Neill
Inside Illustrators “Captain Ralazar’s Information to Sea Monsters”: Zuzanna Wuzyk; “Perils of the Deeps”: Nikki Dawes; “The Ballad of Captain Shivershank”: Elisa Serio
Graphic Design Clara Daly

Picture2Structure and Formatting

The PDF of this situation is 45 pages lengthy. This features a title web page, a desk of contents, a letter from the editor, a assets web page with hyperlinks to the MCDM Security Toolkit, ship maps and pictures, and an MP3 (!), a web page of creator bios, and a full-page OGL assertion. 

  • Two-column format? Test
  • 5e SRD commonplace format for stat blocks and different guidelines? Test
  • Really wonderful paintings of monstrous sealife, ships, and inhuman pirates? Test

What’s within the Maintain?

There are three articles this month, all of which have a nautical theme, and all of which have some connection to the opposite articles on this situation.

  • Captain Ralazar’s Information to Sea Monsters (Monsters, Magic Objects)
  • Perils of the Deeps (Guidelines, Monsters)
  • The Ballad of Captain Shivershank (Journey)

We’ll go into it extra once we get to the ultimate article, however when the article is listed as an “journey,” this text is absolutely extra of a marketing campaign framework. You’ll see. We’ll get there.

Captain Ralazar’s Information to Sea Monsters

It is a monster article written from the attitude of a sea captain at present looking the megalodon Shipsnapper, a large shark that destroyed the captain’s earlier ship, the Feasting Fin. The entire monsters on this part are some variation of shark.

  • Hound Shark (Beast, CR 1)
  • Wereshark (Humanoid, CR 3)
  • Arcane Remora (Monstrosity, CR4)
  • Maelstrom Hammerhead (Celestial, CR5)
  • Warp Shark (Fey, CR 6)
  • Icebreaker Shark (Beast, CR 8)
  • Megalodon (Beast, CR 14)
  • Aranoth (Monstrosity, CR 16)

I wished to point out the monster sorts and CR as a result of there actually is all kinds amongst all of those monsters even with sustaining the shark theme. Aranoths are gigantic, legendary sea creatures that feed on recollections, and switch creatures they swallow to stone. Arcane Remora’s feed on magic and may quickly shut down magic objects. Hound Sharks are sharks expert at monitoring, however they may also be domesticated. Icebreaker Sharks are enormous creatures that burst out of skinny ice in arctic waters to assault their prey. Maelstrom Hammerheads are celestials that serve gods of storm and sea, and may summon storms. Warp Sharks can slip via rifts into the Feywild, spraying blasts of extradimensional water and teleporting.

You possibly can most likely determine the Magalodon and the Wereshark. I respect this model of the wereshark, however it’s sort of ironic. Just a few years in the past, I actually wished stats for a 5e wereshark. Now, a number of years later, I’ve an entire bunch of various stats for a 5e wereshark, though none of them have come from WotC.

I actually love having bizarre and legendary sharks for a seafaring marketing campaign. I feel my favorites are most likely the Maelstrom Hammerhead (to foreshadow capricious sea gods), Warp Sharks (I imply, they teleport), and the Aranoth, as an enormous, legendary creature with a construct in storyline that goes with it. I really like the imagery of the stone remnants of previous meals, and the thought of making an attempt to trace down a reminiscence consuming titanic shark to barter for information.

The magic objects included on this article are:

  • Amulet of Shark Tooth (Unusual)
  • Belt of Blood Frenzy (Uncommon)
  • Slashpoint (Uncommon)
  • Sharkboat (Legendary)

The amulet helps you monitor injured prey, and the belt permits you to expend “enamel” to do further injury, and the tooth-based costs develop again at down. Slashpoint is a scimitar that may summon sharks, and the Sharkboat is a 100-foot lengthy boat that may fold down right into a belt pouch, with a shark figurehead that may chunk, and a tooth cannon. That shoots enamel.

I particularly like the thought of enamel representing costs, and the enamel rising again. It’s a pleasant thematic callback to the shark theme. I’d love to present PCs a Sharkboat, however that +9 to hit, 5d10 figurehead and that +9 to hit, 3d10 tooth cannon are rather a lot. I sort of want there was a lesser Sharkboat as an possibility. 

Perils of the Deep

Enjoyable truth about me: I’ve a concern of drowning. I can’t even dunk my head underwater. I used to be held underwater as a baby, and virtually drowned.  Descriptions of drowning don’t trouble me an excessive amount of, however something that jogs my memory of the helplessness and incapacity to floor, or something that means being restrained underwater, is absolutely laborious for me. A number of the descriptions of the hazards on this article did begin to set off these emotions, so in the event you’re like me, hold that in thoughts as you learn it. There’s a content material warning on the article, so that is completely on me, however take that content material warning critically.

This text has optionally available guidelines for visibility, stress, currents, and disorientation. Devouring Kelp Forests and Shipwrecks are offered as underwater hazards. There are additionally the next monsters detailed:

  • Big Spider Crab (Beast, CR 1)
  • Swarm of Zombie Worms (Undead, CR 2)
  • Dire Jelly (Beast, CR 4)
  • Angler Shark (Beast, CR 6)
  • Eldritch Anemone (Aberration, CR 8)

Spider Crabs can shed limbs to protect themselves. Zombie Worms reside within the bones of rotting corpses on the backside of the ocean. A dire jelly is an enormous jellyfish. Angler sharks are a cross between an angler fish and a shark, that may additionally use their mild to supply a strobe impact. Eldritch Anemone’s are enormous mutated sea life that develop close to locations which have been warped by extradimensional energies.

The Random Shipwreck Encounters desk ties this text to the earlier article. It consists of a number of of the sharks of the prior article, in addition to a number of of the magic objects. One of the crucial enjoyable points of the desk is that it consists of the shipwreck of the Feasting Fin, persevering with the story parts that began in that article.  

The Ballad of Captain Shivershank

As I discussed originally of the submit, this isn’t a lot an journey, the best way the journal normally presents adventures. This isn’t a sequence of encounters strung collectively right into a narrative which may span a number of classes. There are plot hooks to introduce the participant characters to the service of Captain Shivershank as a part of her fleet of pirates.

Captain Shivershank is the one remaining member of her species, and her deep darkish secret is that she used a magic merchandise to make a want that, because of her wording, induced the remainder of her species to vanish. Along with utilizing the fleet to do her pirating enterprise, she sends some operatives to search for the artifact that she initially used to erase the remainder of her species.

The PCs will serve on the ship that Captain Shivershank normally sends on these facet missions to trace down clues as to the situation of her lacking artifact. There are a number of quest hooks offered, permitting the PCs to go off on these adventures to select up clues in between a set of main occasions which can be detailed within the article. There’s additionally the chance for the PCs to be recruited for a mutiny in opposition to Captain Shivershank, and there are a number of potential rivals detailed.

There are sea encounter tables that embody each environments and individuals. A number of the wilder environments embody a portion of the ocean the place the ship sails via physics-defying feywild skies, or a piece of the ocean the place the ocean is actually mirrored within the sky.

There are ship fight guidelines. On this case a few of these guidelines contain assigning ships quite a lot of hits, and the ship sinks after it takes all of those hits. As an alternative of monitoring hit factors, the ship solely takes a success from one thing that’s able to doing siege injury, so siege weapons and monsters with the siege high quality are an issue, however a PC with an axe, not a lot. I wasn’t a fan of the alternate ship fight guidelines once they had been launched in Fables, however this technique nonetheless makes use of commonplace D&D 5e guidelines, like a normal to hit roll and armor class, so I can see the attraction of “flattening” the foundations to solely monitoring siege injury.

There are additionally guidelines for Sea Terrors, successfully a template for making sea creatures into legendary threats within the vein of Skylla and Charybdis. This template will increase the creature’s dimension, attain, and hit factors, and makes them right into a siege monster particularly good at damaging ships.

Closing Ideas

There are many enjoyable instruments throughout all the problems with Arcadia, and I’ve by no means regretted supporting the Patreon, however on this occasion, I’d positively say that in the event you solely ever get one situation of Arcadia, and you’re ever prone to run a ship primarily based marketing campaign, it is best to most likely decide up this situation.

By itself, I actually like how built-in all the articles are in tone and content material, in addition to actually referencing each other. However sea-based campaigns are so simply ported to totally different settings, I really feel like this situation is presenting one thing very particular. The monsters all work throughout settings, and the marketing campaign works in the event you port it to Faerun, Krynn, Midgard, or Exandria.

Now I have to go and determine which of my campaigns goes to function negotiations with a memory-eating shark first.