Encounters in the Savage Frontier is a collection of 24 side treks for the 5th edition of Dungeons and Dragons written by some of the most prolific and talented authors of the Dungeon Master’s Guild. With the quality of the encounters ranging from good to excellent, this is the perfect supplement for DMs looking to spice up their games and keep their players busy when their characters go off the beaten path.
What makes this product truly noteworthy is the broad number of situations the side treks cover. Encounter in the Savage Frontier features some tactical combats, small dungeon crawls, serious and humorous roleplaying encounters, dark mysteries, and even a poetic fox hunt. There’s a little bit of everything for everybody, except for high level characters.
Even though the entire content is excellent, some things really stood out when I first read this eBook. I had noticed Richard Jansen-Parkes’s name while skimming through the Dungeon Master’s Guild but I had never actually read his work. It turns out he’s an incredibly talented writer and I’m looking forward to reading more of his adventures. I knew of Glen Cooper’s vivid imagination but he really surpassed himself with The Tree with No Name. JVC Parry's Omnius the Many-Eyed surprised me because of its original way to get the PCs back on track in an adventure, and Tony Petrecca's Pa Tol was a blast to read.
Otherwise, the layout is simple and clean, the maps are basic but functional, and the illustrations are deliciously old school. A couple of the encounters could have used a bit more editing but none of the mistakes impaired the reading so nothing major here.
Overall, I think this is a solid product well-worth the $2.95 Jeff is asking for it (honestly, it’s a bargain). For the price of a coffee, you get 70 pages of quality content and a chance to discover the work of Chris Bissette, Ken Carcas, Glen Cooper, Jean A. Headley, Richard Jansen-Parkes, Josh Kelly, JVC Parry, Tony Petrecca, and Jeff C. Stevens.