White Plume Mountain (module)

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White Plume Mountain
Type Adventure module
Code/ Abbreviation S2
Edition 1st edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons
Author(s) Lawrence Schick
First Published 1979
Series S1 S2 S3 S4
Return to White Plume Mountain
Classification {{{class}}}

S2 - White Plume Mountain by Lawrence Schick is a adventure module for the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game, published by TSR in 1979, occurring in the same location.

White Plume Mountain is notable for its extensive art by Erol Otus; its bizarre, often puzzle-centric challenges (which include numbered flesh golems, a sphinx's riddle, and a levitating stream); the first mention and depiction of Dragotha, the undead dragon; and the soul-devouring sword Blackrazor. Similarities between Blackrazor and Stormbringer, the soul-devouring sword in Michael Moorcock's Elric saga, have been noted.

The "S" series of classic TSR adventures are stand-alone, complete adventures with unique challenges. The "S" stands for "special"; other adventures in the series include S1 - Tomb of Horrors, S3 - Expedition to the Barrier Peaks, and S4 - Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth. These adventures are meant to be especially challenging and unique in the canon of early, first edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons products.

Plot

The premise of White Plume Mountain involves an evil wizard, Keraptis. According to the module's text, thirteen hundred years ago, Keraptis descended into the volcanic mountain with a company of gnomes, and disappeared. The adventure hinges on the theft of three powerful magical weapons: a trident named Wave, a war hammer named Whelm, and a sword named Blackrazor. The weapons' former owners each received a copy of a taunting poem, each sealed with the symbol of the all-but-forgotten Keraptis. The characters' goal is to rescue the weapons from Keraptis' lair.

Critical reception

White Plume Mountain was ranked the 9th greatest Dungeons & Dragons adventure of all time by Dungeon magazine in 2004, on the 30th anniversary of the Dungeons & Dragons game.

White Plume Mountain was parodied by cartoonist Aaron Williams in Dragon #267.

Update

Wizards of the Coast have released a revised version of the module, updated to conform with v3.5 rules, as a free download on their website. The revised module is designed for characters of the seventh level of experience. The revised version was also accompanied by a web enhancement by Robert Wiese, titled "Outside the Mountain is Just as Dangerous as Inside."

Sequel

Wizards of the Coast also released a sequel to the adventure in 1999, Return to White Plume Mountain, as part of the TSR 25th Anniversary series of publications. The events in the sequel are assumed to take place 20 years following those in the original module.

Novelization

White Plume Mountain was turned into a novel by Paul Kidd in 1999, featuring the cast of characters he also used in his novels Descent into the Depths of the Earth and Queen of the Demonweb Pits.

Bibliography

  • Williams, Aaron. "Climb Every (White Plume) Mountain." Dragon #267. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast, 2000.