26

Dungeon Modules T1-4
The
Temple of Elemental Evil

(1985)


The Temple of Elemental Evil

by Gary Gygax with Frank Mentzer

 

 

 




ORIGINAL CREDITS

Layout and Editing:

Timothy Jones

 

 

 

Editorial Assistance:

Mike Carr and Al Hammack

 

 

 

Art & Maps:

Dave Trampier & Dave Sutherland

 

 




ADDITIONAL CREDITS

Editing:

Ed Carmien, Bruce Heard, Harold Johnson, Thad Russell, Steve Winter

 

 

 

Cover:

Keith Parkinson

 

 

 

Interior Art:

Jeff Butler, Clyde Caldwell, Jeff Easley, Larry Elmore, Keith Parkinson, Dave Trampier

 

 

 

Typography:

Betty Elmore, Kim Landau

 

 

 

Keyline:

Dennis Kauth, Bruce Knutson

 

 

 

Cartography:

Dave Sutherland

 

 

 

 

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A huge, nearly overwhelming adventure, not for the faint of heart or the easily fidgety. Heroes taking on the Temple of Elemental Evil had better want to feel like David facing off against Goliath, or even Neo facing off against The Matrix. There is a lot to do, and the odds are stacked impossibly against you. At some points, it doesn't look like the players have any real friends, but those who persevere will become heroes of the land.

Realm Rating: 5/5

 

Hints On The Greater Temple and The Elemental Nodes

 


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You are strangers in the Village of Hommlett, which is located near an ancient and evil temple. Magical wards have been placed on the temple, imprisoning the evil within. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of humanoids and evil cultists in the area around the temple.

This game is epic in size and scope. First level characters can advance up to ninth level by the end of the adventure. My characters started at fifth level, which made the beginning part easy, but they still found the Temple itself to be very challenging. There are many NPCs who seem to respond to the party's actions, giving the sense that this adventure takes place in a living, breathing world.

I found what I think is a small bug in the game. My party found an underground passage leading out of the Moathouse dungeons. They could not use that passage to get back in and a porticullis had closed on the stairs, completely sealing off the dungeons from further exploration.

The Temple itself has a nice balance of difficult combats, descriptive text, and a few clever traps. There are very few places to rest, which I have come to expect in a Realm game. Combined with a damage event every few steps, this made the Elemental Nodes very difficult to explore. Be warned that your party might die before they solve the puzzle which lets them escape from the Nodes!

If you are looking for a challenge for your mid-level characters, then I highly recommend this module.

Module Rating: 9

Review by Nol Drek

 

 

Ray,

Hope you're not sick of hearing from me today. :) Anyway, I wanted to let you know I finished the Temple today, after a bit of a long session. It was trying at times, but we managed to make it through the Nodes thanks to some potions of extra healing. I must admit I was hoping for more of a "final battle," but I guess that's not how it ends. Since my party managed to defeat Zuggtmoy without fighting her, I guess we avoided the big battle. Not that there wasn't combat a-plenty in the Nodes.

Anyway, I didn't find any other bugs besides the couple I already mentioned to you. The whole design seemed very well put together, especially considering how full it was. I am impressed that you managed to squeeze so many events in without running out of room! I guess after a couple of dozen (how many is it now?) UA designs you have probably picked up a few tricks here and there to use events efficiently. Overall, another excellent design. I'm not sure if it was one of my top handful of Realm games, but a lot of fun to play. My main problem with the game was that parts of it felt like just another dungeon crawl, without a lot of atmosphere. I think the Temple is just a little too big. The Nodes I quite liked, on the other hand, and would have liked to have spent more time exploring if I hadn't been running low on hit points and getting hit by damage events every few steps.

 

I have Icewind Dale. i have played very little though because of the Temple of Elemental Evil in Ray's the Realm has been sucking up my free time and computer time. Ray you must at least let me know - does the thing ever end? is the dungeon or temple ever end? I keep finding secret doors and such. I am trying to map it out but my gosh! I am using tones of graph paper and have redrawn the dungeon and know need tape to tape graph paper together because the dungeon is so big.

How many hours will it take to finish? At least I believe I have wiped out the prefect of two of the elements - earth and air I believe. My merry little band has only suffered maybe f defeats in this dungeon and only a couple were one or two died. Of course this prompts a restart from a previously saved point. So until I finish the TOEE I may not get to IWD. Heck I still have to get to Baldur's gate...

 

Your work on the Temple of Elemental Evil (TOEE) was great. The UA effort played very much as the game did in pen and paper mode, (played by experienced players and dungeon master). It is a tough adventure that tests the player at every level. I envy your ability to capture those subtle elements with UA.

 

Howdy, all. Here is a review of The Realm's infamous "Temple of Elemental Evil" adventure module. I have not included any spoilers, so 1st time players feel free to peruse!

MODULE REVIEW : THE TEMPLE OF ELEMENTAL EVIL (conversion) by Ray Dyer

Let me start with a little history. I am an old-school AD&D player who journeyed through several of the ancient pencil and paper designs years ago, so I was very excited when I downloaded "Temple of Elemental Evil". The paper version was written by the co-creator of Dungeons and Dragons, Gary Gygax, and was meant to be a introductory campaign for all players new to the Greyhawk world. Ray Dyer has created his own world, The Realm, and has gone about converting paper modules into playable FRUA adventures. This latest offering proves Ray is still up to the task, and a mighty one at that, for "Temple of Elemental Evil" takes up all 36 dungeons, 4 overland maps, and has been thoroughly hacked musically, artwise, and stocked with Ray's own flavorful array of armor, weapons, and magical items... which brings me to:

HACKS -- 10

Chock full of The Realm's own brand of hacks, "Temple of Elemental Evil" continues the tradition with Ray Dyer's specialized messages and details. Ray has included his own set of armor, weapons, and magical items so that a player may take his or her same party from GAME00 to GAME24 to GAME03 to GAME26 without fear of losing that precious longsword +2 or that highly useful adder staff. Virtually all FRUA hacks are implemented with the exception of sound effects. The extent of the hacks shown reveal Ray's consistency in The Realm's latest addition, and the quality is carried on.

MUSIC -- 9

Great choices for music in the game, and such ambience! I found all of the music in "Temple of Elemental Evil" to be on par with this hulking classic, and were well-chosen. As the situation warranted, music served to highlight certain encounters and events. Very engaging, I was pleased with the quality and quantity of the music used.

ARTWORK -- 8

I have never been a real fan of The Realm's artwork, though this is more due to personal taste than medium. Ray uses a combination of original artwork, scanned and recolored artwork, and art created by the FRUA community. The quality of these three can sometimes be dicey, but in "Temple of Elemental Evil", Ray has chosen well. I saw several pieces scanned directly from "Village of Hommlett" and "Temple of Elemental Evil" paper modules, but they were recolored nicely and lent a nostalgia to the game. The title was excellent, the best in a Realm game I've seen yet! The frameset was redone as well, and again was a fine one. The game's font is a classic, and was also well-chosen. I loved the combat icons, which were so carefully chosen that I could somehow picture Ray bent over his computer during the construction phase, seeking just the right icon for this particular priest or that nasty lamia. The wall art and backgrounds and sprites were excellent, I might add. The quality of Ray's 'Realm' adventures is definitely increasing!

TEXT -- 10

The game's text events were on-target and without errors... not a single spelling mistake that I saw. I am most impressed by this because the "Temple of Elemental Evil" paper module has great chunks of text missing in its description of the Village of Hommlett, which Ray's game does not. Great job here, Ray!

PLOT MATTER -- N/A

I was going to try to score plot here, but I figure that this type of game would be better served with a score under ORIGINALITY, which I have included. Not to say that there was no plot! The game is one huge plot... and has some of everything: sleepy little village, haunted ruins, big huge dungeon, demons, heroes, magical gew-gaws galore, a many-tiered ongoing theological struggle, and yes, planar travel.

ORIGINALITY -- 10

Ray Dyer's "Temple of Elemental Evil" has to be the most faithful conversion of a paper module I have seen yet. I was astounded at the sheer volume of information and detail that was incorporated into the game. Ray has taken a 128 page book and used Realmsian magic to turn it into the most successful offering I have seen from The Realm yet! But that's not all... Ray has still managed to interject his own details into the adventure (yes, Ray, I saw them!), which added another layer of enjoyment for me. A most cool facet of this is that I can take my Conquerors of Conjoined Evil and march them back out into another Realm adventure, with certain magical items in tow! THIS is what true FRUA gaming is to me, and I am most appreciative of Ray's efforts in this vein. Truly masterful.

ERRORS -- 10

I must admit that I played both the original version and a bug-fix, and I am scoring off of the bug-fix. I found no discernible errors, technical or otherwise, and for this I must give kudos to Ray. The bug-fix came out swiftly and timely, and the current module shines.

OVERALL SCORE -- 9.5

The "Temple of Elemental Evil" is a most worthy adventure, and will provide ample entertainment to any FRUAite. Personally, I found the game rewarding in play and in design. I learned some new tricks from Ray's use of certain key events and artwork that I had not considered before. I would like to thank Ray Dyer for both this latest and greatest contribution to FRUAdom, and for single-handedly revivifying a gaming nostalgia within me that has been long dormant. Since playing "Temple of Elemental Evil", I have gone back and played some earlier offerings (far easier for my party, now! ;-) that have brought back many great memories.

Thank you Ray! May the Realm live long, indeed.

Kaz-Keith

 

Finally finished the Realm conversion of Ravenloft. I was scared playing that module. Yikes! Then the party returned to the Realm to finish the Temple of Elemental Evil in what must be record time - under two hours!

No, I didn't kill every monster. I _did_ however rescue Prince Thrommel, kill the leaders of the Temple, destroy Tsuggtmoy, and destroyed the powersource of the temple. Although I'm not sure about destroying Tsuggtmoy. I think it was a trick, myself.


Actually, I've been having a great time reading all the topics coming in every night. Everyone tends to have highly developed opinions and well thought points. I've been busy playing through G26 Then Temple of Elemental Evil, so I haven't been saying much here lately. I'm very thankful the design wasn't locked up as I've gotten to take a look at how it was put together to make events work and Wow! I still don't know how some of these loops and quest stages all manage to fit together and still work, even while looking at them.

Until our futures meet once more

 

Hi Folks,

game26.zip Temple of Elemental Evil au: Ray & Maureen

A very, very nice translation of the classic. My hubby ran a group of us through this about a year ago. The only bugaboo was the ole' trade/donate gold bug rearing its ugly head at the end of the game. This was one tough design. Rest as often as you can and save, save, save.

Your party of adventurers decides to help the town of Hommlet and rid it of the evil presence that seems to be making a comeback. Ray continually pushes the envelope of quality FRUA designs.

Mycroft: 9.5

Susan

 


All of the preceding modules and game worlds are trademarked property of TSR Inc, which is now the property of Wizards of the Coast, Inc. I take no credit for the stories or ideas presented here, I merely converted them to a playable format for SSI's Unlimited Adventures game.