Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn: A Review and Guide

The Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting is a great resource for Dungeons & Dragons players who are interested in the world of Critical Role. The book provides a wealth of information on the continent of Tal’Dorei and is an essential guide for anyone looking to run a campaign set in this region.

What Is the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn?

The Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting is based on the world of Exandria, the homeworld of the Dungeons & Dragons web series Critical Role. The Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting was originally published in 2017 but was recently updated and released as a “reborn” version.

The Major Players

The book begins with a history of Tal’Dorei and information on the races and cultures that inhabit the continent.

The factions are among the most interesting aspects of the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting. There are many factions, each with its own goals, agendas, alliances, and rivalries.

Both major and minor players are detailed in the book, providing plenty of options for players looking to create characters unique to the setting.

The Factions:

  • Tal’Dorei Council
  • The Ashari
  • The Iron Authority
  • The Clasp
  • Golden Grin

Tal’Dorei Council

The legendary Zan Tal’Dorei created the Tal’Dorei Council to work alongside the sovereign and protect the realm. The Council is made up of representatives from each major city in Tal’Dorei, ensuring the councilors have the people’s best interests at heart.

Since the fall of Emon, the Council has risen to the challenge of uniting the realm and rebuilding the city. The Council hopes to set an example for the other people of Exandria to follow.

The Ashari

Tasked with maintaining the balance between nature and civilization, the Ashari are masters of elemental magic. The origin of the Ashari remains unknown to this day. A diverse group of druids, the Ashari can be found in all corners of the world, serving as advisors, teachers, and protectors.

Arcana Pansophical

A league of the most powerful mages in the land, the Arcana Pansophical is a secret society that controls the flow of magical knowledge. The organization ensures that magic is not abused or misused. The Aranca Pansophical is not afraid to flex its muscles and routinely arrests those found guilty of misuse of magic.

The Clasp

A secret organization of spies, thieves, and assassins, the Clasp is Tal’Dorei’s underworld. The Clasp works like a mafia, and only absolute loyalty guarantees safety. The leaders of the Clasp hold the title of Spireling. The Spirelings oversee the organization and hold power within the ranks.

Golden Grin

In dark times, people need someone to look up to. Enter the Golden Grin: a group of courageous adventurers who oppose evil and strive to make the world a better place.

The Golden Grin is made up of like-minded individuals who have come together to take a stand against tyranny and cruelty. Composed of artists, musicians, innkeepers, spiritual gurus, and retired adventurers, the Golden Grin is a force for good in a world that desperately needs it.

Is the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn Worth the Money?

The Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn is a great value for the price. The book is packed with knowledge and is an essential guide for anyone planning to run a Dungeons & Dragons campaign set in the world of Critical Role. 

The book invites players to explore the continent of Tal’Dorei and provides everything they need to get started. If you’re a fan of Critical Role or are simply looking for a well-crafted campaign setting, the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn is worth your time.

Inside the book’s 280 art-filled pages, players will find details on the continents, history, geography, people, and monsters that make Tal’Dorei such a fascinating place. The book also includes:

  • A detailed guide to every region in the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting
  • New Subclasses and Backgrounds
  • Creatures from the world of Critical Role
  • Beautiful illustrations and maps to use in your games

If you missed out on the first edition of this campaign setting, don’t worry. The new edition is a comprehensive guide that will provide everything you need to play a campaign based on Critical Role.

And if you already have the first edition, the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn is a must-have update. The book not only provides new lore about the world of Critical Role, but it also features revised and updated content from the original book. Whether you’re new to Tal’Dorei or a seasoned veteran, the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn is a book you’ll want in your collection.

The Excitement of Tal’Dorei

There’s a lot to be excited about with the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn. The book is crammed full of details on the world of Critical Role and provides players with everything they need to know to run their own games on this fascinating continent.

In addition to the detailed setting information, the book also includes new subclasses, backgrounds, and creatures, as well as beautiful illustrations and maps. Whether you’re a fan of Critical Role or just looking for a new campaign setting to explore, the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn is a fantastic choice.

Races of Exandria

The cultures of Tal’Dorei are based primarily on the cities and regions that make up the land. A variety of people have made their homes on the continent, including humans, elves, dwarves, and halflings. 

You can find all kinds of races in Tal’Dorei from the traditional Dungeons & Dragons staples to more unusual options like Half-Giants and those with Elemental Ancestry. Other races featured in the book include orcs, firblogs, goblins, and draconians.

Tal’Dorei Subclasses

The Tal’Dorei setting provides unique subclasses for familiar Dungeons & Dragons classes. These new subclasses provide players with interesting new choices for their characters.

For example, you could play a Path of the Juggernaut Barbarian, a Moon Domain Cleric, or a Blood Magic Wizard. Tal’Dorei also introduces the new Runechild Sorcerer and Cobalt Soul Monk. 

Each of these subclasses provides a distinct flavor of gameplay, and all are interesting options for players looking to try something new.

These new subclasses include:

  • Barbarian: Path of the Juggernaut
  • Bard: College of Tragedy
  • Cleric: Moon Domain
  • Druid: Circle of the Blighted
  • Monk: Way of the Cobalt Soul
  • Paladin: Oath of the Open Sea
  • Sorcerer: Runechild
  • Wizard: Blood Magic

Tal’Dorei Backgrounds 

The Tal’Dorei setting also provides new backgrounds specifically designed for the world. These new options give players interesting new ways to customize their characters and reflect the unique cultures and lifestyles found in Tal’Dorei.

For instance, your character could be an Ashari operative, a member of a secret society dedicated to the protection of Tal’Dorei. Or you could be a reformed cultist, someone who has escaped the clutches of a dark religion and is now working to atone for your past.

Some of the new backgrounds include:

  • Ashari
  • Clasp Member
  • Lyceum Scholar
  • Reformed Cultist
  • Whitestone Rifle Corps

Tal’Dorei Adventure Locations

The lands of Tal’Dorei are as vast as they are varied, and there is no shortage of adventure locations to explore. From the bustling metropolis of Emon to the treacherous jungles of the Rifenmist Peninsula, there is something for everyone in Tal’Dorei.

You could set your adventure in the treacherous crags of the Stormcrest Mountains, or maybe you’ll venture into the Underdark, a vast and dangerous network of caves and tunnels that runs beneath Tal’Dorei.

The Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn includes a detailed guide to each of the continent’s many regions.

Lucidian Coast

Along the eastern coast of Tal’Dorei, players will find a region busy with trade and opportunities for adventure. Ships are fond of docking in Stilbenm, a southern port. Those attempting to dock in northern ports often end up in the water, victims of the volatile seas.

A region prone to storms, the Lucidian Coast is home to a variety of creatures. The rocky coastlines are also filled with wildlife and monsters.

Cliffkeep Mountains

The largest mountain range in Tal’Dorei, the Cliffkeep Mountains are a treacherous and dangerous place. Home to ferocious beasts and deadly weather, the mountains are not for the faint of heart.

The dwarves of Kraghammer flourish deep beneath the mountains. Above ground, the hostile topography is dotted with caves ー the dwellings of half-giants, goblins, and kobolds. The mountains are also home to hill giants, cyclops, and trolls.

Kraghammer

Carved into the side of a mountain, Kraghammer is a dwarven city that is as tough and resilient as its people. The dwarves of Kraghammer are master craftsmen, and the city is known for its high-quality weapons and armor.

To reach the city gates, travelers must cross over a hundred-foot chasm on a bridge guarded by several watchtowers. Once inside the city, visitors will find a thriving market, stout taverns, and sturdy homes.

Dividing Plains

The heartland of Tal’Dorei, the Dividing Plains is a vast stretch of grasslands that separate the continent’s two major mountain ranges. The plains are home to a variety of cultures and races, including humans, dwarves, and halflings.

The people of the Dividing Plains are known for their resilience and determination. They are hearty folk, and they have to be in order to survive.

The Dividing Plains are also the territory of a fearsome cult of warriors who prey on the unwary traveler. These warriors, known as the Ravagers, are a vicious and merciless bunch.

Rifenmist Peninsula

The Rifenmist Peninsula is a treacherous and dangerous place. Jutting out into the Lucidian Ocean, the peninsula is rife with political struggles. Elves and other people of Rifenmist long for aid in their fight against the Iron Authority. The jungles are full of dangerous monsters that would love nothing more than to make a meal of unsuspecting adventurers.

Only the hardiest of adventurers should venture into the Rifenmist Peninsula. Those who do will find themselves in the middle of a conflict that could shape the future of Tal’Dorei.

Ziatora, the Incinerator
© Wizards of the Coast by Chris Rahn

Other Lands of Exandria

The continent of Tal’Dorei is just one part of the world of Exandria. Dungeons & Dragons players who are familiar with Critical Role will recognize many of the other continents and regions from the series, including Wildemount, Marquet, and Issylra.

Wildemount

Wildemount is a continent featured prominently in the second Dungeons & Dragons campaign played by Critical Role. The continent is home to many of the show’s iconic characters, including Caleb Widogast, Fjord, and Jester Lavorre.

The lands of Wildemount are varied and full of adventure. From the tropical Menagerie Coast to the wastelands of Xhorhas, Wildemount is a continent brimming with possibilities.

The Dwendalian Empire is the primary power in Wildemount, and it seeks to extend its reign over the entire continent.

Rich in resources, Wildemount is a land of opportunity for those looking to make their fortune. However, the Dwendalian Empire is not the only force at work in Wildemount.

Marquet

Southwest of Tal’Dorei lies the continent of Marquet, a land of pebbled beaches, rocky canyons, and intense desert.

The people of Marquet have a rich culture and history. This continent is home to the city of Ank’Harel, ruled by the mysterious J’mon Sa Ord. Also known as the Jewel of Hope, Marquet is a haven for music and the arts but is surrounded by monster-infested desert sands.

A number of strange and dangerous creatures live in the jungles of Marquet as well as dozens of cities and tribes. The smoking Suuthan Volcano is also found on this continent.

Issylra

This frigid land is said to be where all civilization emerged. During the Age of Arcanum, flying cities rose and fell here.

The city of Vasselheim is one of the most notable locations in Exandria. Vasselheim is the oldest city in the world, having withstood the rise and fall of countless civilizations. The city is home to a variety of races and factions and is a hub of religion and spirituality.

Outside the walls of Vasselheim, the continent of Issylra is wild and untamed with plenty of snowy plains and forests to explore.

Shattered Teeth

Only the hardiest of sailors take the journey to the Shattered Teeth, a chain of islands located southeast of Tal’Dorei. The islands are home to a vast fishing community known as the Ossended Host. Highly religious, the Ossended Host believe in the power of dreams and nightmares.

The islands of the Shattered Teeth are also the home of a ruthless trading company called the Wanderman Assembly. Creating centuries ago, the Wanderman Assembly will stop at nothing to get their hands on anything of value.

Enemies and Allies of Exandria

The world of Dungeons & Dragons is full of dangerous creatures, and Exandria is no different.

From the fearsome dragons of Wildemount to the undead armies of Thordak the Cinder King, Exandria is a land full of danger.

However, there are also many allies to be found in this world. From merchants and information brokers to explorers and fellow adventurers, there are many groups working to protect D&D players.

Catfolk

Common throughout the world of Dungeons & Dragons, catfolk are a race of humanoid felines. In Tal’Dorei, they can be found in the jungles of Rifenmist, the bustling streets of Emon, and everywhere in between. Known for their agility, charm, and love of good food, catfolk make loyal friends and formidable foes.

Dragons

Dragons in Tal’Dorei are as old as the Founding and are a deeply ingrained part of the world’s history. While most dragons keep to themselves, there are some who take an active role in the world. The most notable of these is the Chroma Conclave, a group of five evil dragons who seek to rule over Tal’Dorei.

The Conclave was responsible for the destruction of Emon and has wreaked havoc throughout the continent. They are currently being hunted by a group of adventurers known as Vox Machina.

Vox Machina

This legendary band of adventurers is known throughout the world for their heroic deeds. Comprised of (but not limited to) scoundrels, legends, and dumbasses, Vox Machina has saved the world from some of its greatest threats. The deeds of Vox Machina are told all over the land, and their story is one that will be told for generations to come.

Ravagers

The Ravagers are a hostile group of blood-thirsty cultists led by warlords known as Slaughter Lords. These killers stampede across the Dividing Plains, pillaging and murdering anyone who gets in their way. Hellbent on spreading the seeds of chaos and destruction, the Ravagers are a threat to innocent civilians and military alike.

New Tal’Dorei Creatures

The Tal’Dorei setting also introduces a variety of new creatures, many of which are native to the world. These new monsters provide players with interesting challenges to overcome and add an extra layer of depth to the world.

Players will find the stats for creatures unique to Tal’Dorei, including Ashari Firetamers, Clasp Cutthroats, and Cyclops Stormcallers. 

The Critical Role Pantheon

The gods of Exandria are as varied as the planet itself. There are dozens of gods worshipped by the people of Tal’Dorei, and each one has its own following.

The Critical Role Pantheon is a group of gods that are specific to the world of Exandria. These deities are connected to the events of the Dungeons & Dragons campaigns played by Critical Role.

The Prime Deities

The Prime Deities are ancient and powerful beings who are worshipped by many races. They hold sway over the fundamental aspects of existence, such as life, death, and love.

These gods are responsible for creating the world of Exandria and its people. Though they often squabble among themselves, they are united in their love for their creations.

If you’re creating a campaign in Tal’Dorei, consider adding some of these deities into your world. Critical Role fans will be familiar with many of them, and they can provide a great source of conflict and adventure for your players.

How To Run a Campaign in Tal’Dorei

The Tal’Dorei setting is full of possibilities for D&D campaigns. Whether you want to run a campaign in the city of Emon or venture into the depths of Kraghammer, there’s plenty to explore in Tal’Dorei.

You might begin by asking yourself what it is about Critical Role that inspires you. Do you enjoy the political intrigue of the Dwendalian Empire? The mystery of the Rifenmist jungles? The grandeur of Emon?

Here are a few other tips on running a campaign in Tal’Dorei:

  1. Decide what type of campaign you want to run. Do you want to focus on exploration or combat? Maybe you want a mix of both?
  2. Choose a starter adventure. There are a number of published adventures set in Tal’Dorei, or you can create your own.
  3. Create interesting characters. The characters in your campaign should be dynamic and interesting with their own motivations and backstories.
  4. Plan your sessions. Make sure you know what’s happening in each session and what your players need to do to progress the story.
  5. Have fun! Running a campaign can be a lot of work, but it’s also a lot of fun. Make sure you take the time to enjoy yourself and your players.

Exandria is a dynamic world, and there’s always something new to discover. With the Tal’Dorei setting, you can create your own adventures and explore this amazing continent.

Look for an adventure idea that speaks to you and get started on your journey across the many lands of Exandria.

The Bottom Line

The Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting is an excellent resource for Dungeons & Dragons players who want to explore the world of Exandria. It provides a detailed look at the continent of Tal’Dorei with plenty of lore on the various regions, peoples, and cultures. If you’re a fan of Critical Role or just looking for an exciting new setting to play in, Tal’Dorei is definitely worth checking out.