Review: Beyond the Golden Vault
Note that Shadomain.com was given a complimentary digital copy of this publication for review purposes. No other compensation was received for this review.
Beyond the Golden Vault is a 5e compatible TTRPG supplement. It was developed by a creative team lead by Anthony Anderson, and written by Jackson Wagner, Anthony Anderson (EpicBlunders), Danny Kodicek (DnDWithPlumbing), Bryan Cetroni (Bjarke the Bard), Anastasia Murray (DMStasia), Caspian Cavieri (ProlificIllithic), Ben Sutton (TabletopCourant), Gethin Pearce (TheWelshDM), Akkator006. The book is 120 pages and available on dmsguild.com in PDF format.
Beyond the Golden Vault looks great, it has full color illustrations that reinforce the themes of mystery and criminal business. The typography is well done and the layout is efficient.
Beyond the Golden Vault is a useful tool for DMs and players looking to play heist adventures in D&D 5e. It should be noted that despite the title this book is not directly related to Keys from the Golden Vault by Wizards of the Coast. This is even more confusing as the “Golden Vault” in Keys from the Golden Vault is an organization which the player characters belong to. Beyond the Golden Vault has no direct references to this organization. It’s worth noting that this book does not read like a standard 5e adventure book. It is useful in putting together heist based adventures, but the adventures contained don’t have a particular beginning or plot.
The book starts with an explanation of heists and heroes of heists which are great as this type of adventure might be new to many players. It follows with several new backgrounds for criminal characters.
There are then three separate heists outlined. Following each heist is the “anatomy of a ,,, heist” which does a good job of explaining how the heist might be planned from the PCs perspective. There are several potential traps which could be used in designing the heist scenarios, as well as several new monsters and adversaries for heists.The final part of the book includes the stages of a heist including tables which might be useful for players new to heist adventures.
Beyond the Golden Vault is a good book for those interested in heist adventures, but it might feel lacking in certain things for DMs new to this type of adventure. One thing to note is that there are no maps for any of the three adventures including the Resplendent Repository which takes place in a 5 story building. Some DMs might see this as freeing as the heist could be tailored to the campaign setting. But it definitely requires prep on the DMs part.