Module D3 – Vault of the Drow

What’s New

  • First 32 page module – a huge leap. So from G1 to D3, the page counts are 8, 8, 16, 16, 20, 32. Admittedly 4 of those pages are blank.
  • The Background is clearly now fully geared to be read to the players, completing the transition that started in a partial form in D2
  • Finally, the land of the Drow is described


  • Cover by DCS III as usual, but this time the back cover is by Trampier
  • Considering the page count, there’s very limited artwork in this module – only 2 pieces by DCS III and 4 by Tramp


  • In D1 and D2, on the way to the main big caverns, there were 2 encounter areas on the way that couldn’t be avoided without taking circuitous routes. In contrast, in D3 there’s basically a choice between 3 paths and the ability to avoid 2 of the encounters. Apparently when this was played in the Gencon tournament, almost all the groups took the same route and died, as related in Dragon 19 and here
  • There’s an idol that has a particularly horrifying outcome of turning a player into a spider over the course of 66 days
  • This is a really impressive setting – the vault of the drow is massive and has a wonderfully alien feel
  • This module is jam packed! Even though there are 6 pages of maps, there’s still not enough room for maps of the bugbear cave complex, the troglodyte tunnels, nor the multi-level black tower, let alone all the merchant villas and noble houses. Oh yeah, and there’s Erelhei-Cinlu, the city itself, which has roughly 10,000 inhabitants…
  • I have no idea how this module was supposed to be dealt with in 1 day’s worth of tournament play
  • There are a number of references to Q1, which wouldn’t come out for ages

Date Information – August 1978

  • See info on D1 page
  • There’s more info about the release at GenCon in the history at DriveThruRPG