You are stranded in a lonely mountain hut with a bunch of strangers. A blizzard rages outside. You will have to leave soon. Winter knows no mercy. Can you gather enough food and furs to survive the journey? Can you navigate your way towards shelter before night falls on the icy plains? Will you eat or be eaten as you face the creatures that roam Frostbite Isle? Deadly secrets. Dire situations can turn strangers into companions. But don’t be too quick to trust, and don’t sleep too sound; a warm coat may shield you from snow and wind, but steel and hearts can be colder yet. No roads to walk. The snow erases all assumptions of where your path should lead. Do you head home? Do you find another? The snow lies thick and wide, covering the land like a blank page, ready to hear your story.
The Horrors of Frostbite Isle is a Wild West Winter Survival adventure for 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons. I designed and wrote it in November / December 2021, based on a spontaneously homebrewn oneshot I ran for a group of friends.
All proceeds after Wizards Of The Coast’s licensing fees go to Child’s Play Charity. They’re all about improving the lives of children in hospitals and other care facilities through the power of games. They’ve already supplied over 180 hospitals worldwide with video games, gaming consoles, Virtual Reality systems, etc. – a worthy cause in my eyes. Go support it:
What does the game play like?
The Horrors of Frostbite Isle is first and foremost a survival game. You must forage and hunt in order to withstand the cold and hunger that plague you. The cold gets worse at night, so you must find shelter as well. If you wish to return to civilization, you must also manage to navigate the vast snowy plains. Finally, as you’d expect from a D&D game, there are predators roaming these plains that you may have to fight to survive.
The game is also about intrigue and mistrust – at least it can be, if you choose to include the corresponding mechanics. A ragtag party of hardboiled Wild West characters usually implies an abundant potential for conflict.
Lastly, it is a sandbox-style game, in that all of Frostbite Isle, excluding some pre-defined historically relevant locations, is generated randomly during play. It is also a sandbox-style game in the sense that there is no set common goal for the players to chase – though an intuitive goal for the early game would be to work together to avoid death.
This and more is explained in my YouTube video advertising the game.
Sounds cool. How did you make it?
Oh, how fortunate you should ask. There is a blog post on here in which I talk about the process and the challenges in making even a small project like this one come to life.