Rime of the Frostmaiden in-Realms timeline leaked

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Tim Baker
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Rime of the Frostmaiden in-Realms timeline leaked

Post by Tim Baker »

Take this with a grain of salt, but according to this leak from Inverse Portal, the upcoming D&D adventure, Rime of the Frostmaiden, takes place in 1450 DR, during the Age of Upheaval. Here's what we know so far. Note that this was translated from Portuguese.

Potential spoilers below. I've also posted my questions for knowledgeable Realms fans in the first post after this one to avoid spoiling anything with my questions here. So check them out after you're done reading, and provide an answer below. Thanks!
Joga o D20 wrote: This afternoon, Inverse portal accidentally made more information available about the upcoming D&D adventure: Icewind Dale - Rime of the Frostmaiden!

Although the article is no longer available, we present the main information you need to know about the adventure!

′′Icewind Dale - Rime of the Frostmaiden′′ is an adventure that begins on the 1st level and is expected to complete it when they reach the 12th level. Unlike the adventures launched so far, Rime of the Frostmaiden will take place in 1450 DR, in the known ′′Age of Upheaval′′ - when many gods are dead or dying.

The subtitle ′′Rime of the Frostmaiden′′ is a word used to symbolize the cold touch of divinity, which can be felt throughout the adventure.
The adventure was inspired by Ridley Scott's Alien; John Carpenter's Otherworld Enigma; At the Mountains of Madness by H. P Lovecraft; and The Lit, by Stanley Kubrick. When Christopher Perkins said ′′if you enjoyed Curse of Strahd, you'll probably like what's coming", he referred to Rime of the Frostmaiden.

New mechanics
According to Jeremy Crawford, Rime of the Frostmaiden will be the 5th Edition adventure with the largest number of new monsters, and will feature cold variations of classic monsters: Ice Golem and Snow Owl will be some of the new creatures you will find by Icewind Dale.

In addition to monsters, there will be a modification of the Goliath race (which will become resistant to cold damage), new climate threats (such as snows and avalanches), and some minigames (such as a sport played by the Goliaths).

Finally, to create the climate of paranoia in the group, each of them will have a dark secret randomly determined by some letters, and they all know that each member has a stain on their story. Only the Dungeon Master will know the secrets of the group.

Adventure plot (contains spoilers):
′′ When winter doesn't end when it should - on the contrary, it gets colder -, the ordinary life of the people of Icewind Dale may cease to exist. Auril (also known as Frostmaiden) is who is causing these disturbances in the region.

The future of Ten Burgos is on the threshold of an ice age and if the characters don't intercede, they will all be destroyed. The Ten Burgos are part of a looser confederation whose members compete with each other but cooperate with each other when necessary. In addition to the cold and competition, the confederation also needs to be concerned about the barbaric tribes of Reghed. Characters should perform small missions that will help them explore the environment before being introduced to the mysteries of the region.

Icewind Dale: Rime of the Frostmaiden will be released on September 15, 2020 and can now be purchased on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3dabdHX
Last edited by Tim Baker on Thu Jun 18, 2020 6:38 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Tim Baker »

Do you think we'll see anything about the Spellplague in the book? Will the map reflect where Abeir swapped with Toril?

What other items might differentiate an adventure set in the 4e era, compared to the post-Second Sundering era of 5e?

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Isuru »

Going from level 1 to 12 is a pretty significant length.

Using 1450 DR is an interesting choice, it's smack dab in the middle of the Age of Upheaval. I wonder if there is any reason other than to separate the event from current year FR to give it some space to breath. Whether the PCs succeed or not, present FR is still ~45 years away. Perhaps time for the horrors to return for current characters.

Don't know of any details around that specific time and locale to identify what the adventure could potentially be investigating. Though, admittedly, I wasn't a fan of the approach to 4E Realms, so my attentions turned else where during that era.

The references to the inspiration tales of otherworldly horror in an arctic environ also gives a hint as to the Mythos-tinged tone of the adventure. The dark secret set up is also interesting, making characters paranoid about each other.

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Tim Baker »

Isuru wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:38 am
Going from level 1 to 12 is a pretty significant length.
Agreed. This is pretty standard for the 5th Edition adventures, though. They're sizable. I think the assumption is that groups will play through them for a year prior to the next big annual adventure dropping.
Isuru wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:38 am
Using 1450 DR is an interesting choice, it's smack dab in the middle of the Age of Upheaval. I wonder if there is any reason other than to separate the event from current year FR to give it some space to breath. Whether the PCs succeed or not, present FR is still ~45 years away. Perhaps time for the horrors to return for current characters.
I know very little about 4e Realms as well. I've read a couple novels that took place in that era, and read the Neverwinter supplement for 4e years ago. So I'm interested to see if what made that era different is being embraced here, or if it's being retconned to feel more like the pre- and post-4e Realms.
Isuru wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:38 am
The references to the inspiration tales of otherworldly horror in an arctic environ also gives a hint as to the Mythos-tinged tone of the adventure. The dark secret set up is also interesting, making characters paranoid about each other.
I'm curious about that, too. Could be interesting if it works well in a group. Might lead to PvP or other toxic behavior in some of the edge cases.

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Big Mac »

1450 DR is the "Year of Holy Thunder" according to Forgotten Realms Wiki.

(Check out the "Show Lunar calendar" link on that article, if you use the phases of Selûne or lycanthropy in your games, as it will set up the entire year for your Icewind Dale: Rime of the Frostmaiden campaign.)

The Godborn, by Paul S. Kemp, starts in 1450 DR.
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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Big Mac »

Tim Baker wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 6:52 am
Isuru wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:38 am
Going from level 1 to 12 is a pretty significant length.
Agreed. This is pretty standard for the 5th Edition adventures, though. They're sizable. I think the assumption is that groups will play through them for a year prior to the next big annual adventure dropping.
The average page count of D&D products has been getting bigger and bigger since 1st Edition AD&D.

Adventure modules used to be so thin that it wasn't possible to put anything on the spine of the book. They used to look more like a magazine, with a card cover than a book.

Now there seems to be a desire to make things look bulky enough that people feel they are getting good value for money, for the price. The printing techniques also allow the art to be rendered better (early D&D artists had to design art around the printing methods available at the time, so often had to throttle back their talent).

The whole thing looks more polished in general. And they are almost certainly going to tie this in with other stuff.

I bet there will also be a year of D&D Adventurer's Guild products to back this up (or a DMs Guild Adept product that comes out on DMs Guild just after the Icewind Dale book is published).

We are going to get a bunch of WotC and D&D Beyond videos about Icewind Dale.

There might be a bunch of miniatures that come out at the same time.
Tim Baker wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 6:52 am
Isuru wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:38 am
Using 1450 DR is an interesting choice, it's smack dab in the middle of the Age of Upheaval. I wonder if there is any reason other than to separate the event from current year FR to give it some space to breath. Whether the PCs succeed or not, present FR is still ~45 years away. Perhaps time for the horrors to return for current characters.
I know very little about 4e Realms as well. I've read a couple novels that took place in that era, and read the Neverwinter supplement for 4e years ago. So I'm interested to see if what made that era different is being embraced here, or if it's being retconned to feel more like the pre- and post-4e Realms.
I remember WotC saying, back when 5th Edition was about to come out, that people would be able to use 5th Edition D&D to play in any time period of Forgotten Realms. It was one of those panels when they were trying to convince everyone that they were not going to stuff up the Realms.

(I remember thinking that was good, as I have a ton of 3rd Edition books and 4th Edition was mostly about telling me that all my books were 100 years out of date and most of the NPCs were gone.)

This actually starts to deliver on that promise. Not only that, it also unlocks the 4th Edition Realms products in the D&D Classics range on DMs Guild as things a fan of this adventure can use to expand their 1450 DR game.

If this does well, they might do the same for the 3rd Edition Era, 2nd Edition Era or 1st Edition Era and publish a sourcebook/adventure that works for old school FR fans.

They might even go nuts and publish an Arcane Age Realms product (that uses standard 5e rules instead of the variant magic system that Slade came up with for Netheril).
Tim Baker wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 6:52 am
Isuru wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:38 am
The references to the inspiration tales of otherworldly horror in an arctic environ also gives a hint as to the Mythos-tinged tone of the adventure. The dark secret set up is also interesting, making characters paranoid about each other.
I'm curious about that, too. Could be interesting if it works well in a group. Might lead to PvP or other toxic behavior in some of the edge cases.
I'm not a big fan of PvP action, but that seems to be tied into some sort of pre-gen backstory thing. I'm guessing that people would either run with this (as a background theme that holds a new group of PCs together) or all agree to ditch it.

I'm guessing that some 4th Edition FR campaigns are still going and that their GMs might want to move their existing PCs (that might not have dark secrets) into this adventure. So I think there might be sidebars that show how to ditch this feature.
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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Zeromaru X »

If this happens in 1450, then its 29 years before the start of the 4e campaign (as intended by the official products, that is). There is nothing about Ten Towns and Icewind Dale in 4e, but this happens before the destruction of Neverwinter, so it would be interesting if they reveal any information about the city at the time.

As there is nothing on the area in 4e sources, they can do whatever they want with the lore on this book. I doubt they will respect 4e lore, btw, given their total disregard for 4e lore in 5e sources (see the SCAG or MToF). So, yeah, I'm expecting nothing from this book.
Tim Baker wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:53 am
Do you think we'll see anything about the Spellplague in the book? Will the map reflect where Abeir swapped with Toril?

What other items might differentiate an adventure set in the 4e era, compared to the post-Second Sundering era of 5e?
1. I don't think so.

2. I wonder if they are going to implement special rules for magic, as you know, Mystra was dead back in 1450...

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden timeline leaked

Post by Tim Baker »

Zeromaru X wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 8:27 pm
If this happens in 1450, then its 29 years before the start of the 4e campaign (as intended by the official products, that is). There is nothing about Ten Towns and Icewind Dale in 4e, but this happens before the destruction of Neverwinter, so it would be interesting if they reveal any information about the city at the time.
Thanks, that's helpful information.
Zeromaru X wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 8:27 pm
I wonder if they are going to implement special rules for magic, as you know, Mystra was dead back in 1450...
That would be very interesting. I somehow can't imagine them dramatically affecting so many PCs. It feels like one of those things that might just be ignored, because the alternative is potentially disappointing players who come to the table with one expectation, only to find out that this adventure is going to play out very differently. Not every group benefits from a strong Session Zero.

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden in-Realms timeline leaked

Post by JediTwit »

Not sure if anyone has noticed this or not. Thought I'd put it out there and see what you all think about it. Of most interest to me is:

"1450 DR in conflicts
Auril sends her vassals to battle the djinn and efreet of Calimshan. As a result, the desert of the Skyfire Wastes is frozen over for months.
The Second Era of Skyfire comes to a close in Calimshan as the efreeti Memnon and the djinni Calim mysteriously vanish, presumably to their home plane."

https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/1450_DR


1450 DR in conflicts
Auril sends her vassals to battle the djinn and efreet of Calimshan. As a result, the desert of the Skyfire Wastes is frozen over for months.
The Second Era of Skyfire comes to a close in Calimshan as the efreeti Memnon and the djinni Calim mysteriously vanish, presumably to their home plane.

Births in 1450 DR
Vasen Cale is born to Varra, who dies in childbirth.

1450 DR in publications
Novels
The Godborn begins.

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden in-Realms timeline leaked

Post by Tim Baker »

JediTwit wrote:
Tue Aug 11, 2020 4:32 pm
Not sure if anyone has noticed this or not. Thought I'd put it out there and see what you all think about it. Of most interest to me is:

"1450 DR in conflicts
Auril sends her vassals to battle the djinn and efreet of Calimshan. As a result, the desert of the Skyfire Wastes is frozen over for months.
The Second Era of Skyfire comes to a close in Calimshan as the efreeti Memnon and the djinni Calim mysteriously vanish, presumably to their home plane."
Good find, JediTwit. Thanks for sharing this. I have a couple thoughts about this.

First, I see that the source is "Hall of the Frostmaiden" in Dragon 367. I just gave this 4th Edition article a read, and I wonder if the original post introduced the 1450 date in their blurb about Rime of the Frostmaiden due to the very similar names and the focus on Auril. Maybe being written in Portuguese led to a misunderstanding/mistranslation, somehow?

Second, I would be much more interested in this adventure if it involved a clash between Auril and the genies of Calimshan. Anything's possible, but that sounds pretty epic to me, and not aligned with the dark tone that has been promised. Even transporting the PCs from Ten-Towns to Calimshan would likely require flashy high-magic, which seems contrary to what we've heard about the adventure thus far. But who knows? Maybe it will start dark and gritty but change tone midway through the adventure. I hope that's the case, actually.

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Re: Rime of the Frostmaiden in-Realms timeline leaked

Post by Tim Baker »

JediTwit wrote:
Tue Aug 11, 2020 4:32 pm
Not sure if anyone has noticed this or not. Thought I'd put it out there and see what you all think about it. Of most interest to me is:

"1450 DR in conflicts
Auril sends her vassals to battle the djinn and efreet of Calimshan. As a result, the desert of the Skyfire Wastes is frozen over for months.
The Second Era of Skyfire comes to a close in Calimshan as the efreeti Memnon and the djinni Calim mysteriously vanish, presumably to their home plane."
I just noticed that this was your first post, JediTwit. Welcome to The Piazza! I'm glad you could join us! You might want to drop by the Introduce yourself here thread, and share a little bit about yourself. What's your favorite system? Favorite setting? Whatever you're comfortable with. :)

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