A Journey Through the Forge of Fury: Dungeon Master’s Prep Guide – Part 1

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Exploring the Mystical Caves of Khundrukar in Forge of Fury
Prepare for an epic journey through the Forge of Fury in this comprehensive Dungeon Master's guide. From the coastal town of Saltmarsh to the depths of Khundrukar, uncover hidden secrets, negotiate contracts, and navigate intriguing encounters. Equip your players for an unforgettable adventure!

The Forge of Fury is a captivating adventure that offers both players and Dungeon Masters a chance to delve into a rich and immersive world. To ensure your game runs smoothly and keeps your players engaged, careful preparation is key. In this guide, we’ll explore the essential steps to prepare for this adventure, from establishing the starting town to navigating the town of Blasingdell and ultimately venturing into the treacherous depths of Khundrukar.


Embracing your role as a Dungeon Master is an exciting venture, and this guide is tailored to empower new DMs in customizing their ‘Forge of Fury’ adventure. Recognizing that adventure settings are intentionally broad, this resource provides the framework and prompts to be creative. With practical tips and creative insights, you’ll be poised to craft a unique and captivating experience for your players.

Uncover Hidden Histories with Ingo the Drover in Forge of Fury
Uncover Hidden Histories with Ingo the Drover in Forge of Fury

I. Setting the Stage: Saltmarsh


Saltmarsh is a great starting town and base for the players. The player’s contact in Saltmarsh will be Ingo the Drover from Ghosts of Saltmarsh (GoS pgs 17 and 20). The meeting place can be a tavern such as The Snapping Line or The Wicker Goat both are taverns in Saltmarsh. We will be altering the Forge of Fury Tales From The Yawning Portal (FoF pg 34) story hook “Tracking The Broken Blade” to be contracted by Ingo the Drover.


  • Starting Point: Saltmarsh

    • Saltmarsh, a bustling coastal town, sets the stage for this epic adventure. Here, players will gather resources and make vital contacts. However, it is perfectly fine to set your starting point somewhere else. Take a look at this juicy no fluff item: Random Cities and Towns!
  • Meeting Ingo the Drover

    • Ingo the Drover, a mysterious broker from Ghosts of Saltmarsh (GoS), is the players’ key contact in Saltmarsh. He holds the key to their next adventure.
  • Taverns of Choice

    • The Snapping Line and The Wicker Goat, both taverns in Saltmarsh, offer players a chance to gather information and form connections. Maybe you love random tables like us and want to roll up your starting tavern on the spot! We recommend this popular item: The Book of Random Inns!

II. Altering the Story Hook: “Tracking the Broken Blade”


As stated above, we are making a slight alteration to an already very small story hook found on page 34 of Tales From the Yawning Portal. This will connect Saltmarsh to Blasingdell. Tales From The Yawning Portal contains The Forge of Fury Classic adventure updated for 5E but keeps all the flavor of the original dungeon crawl. It also contains 6 other compelling stories from the 40+ yrs of Dungeons and Dragons!


Ingo the Drover

He’s got some hidden history and secret connections but he’s basically interested in his own pursuits and has become a contract broker for interesting tasks. His clients remain anonymous to the adventurers he contracts. He is otherwise genuine though may leave out some details as he sees fit. Players may negotiate contract prices and rewards with Ingo but he is under the constraints of his client.


Meet Ingo the Drover: Your Gateway to the Forge of Fury


Notes on this meeting: The conversation needs to include the Tracking the Broken Blade story hook and the DM will need to think a little bit about who and why a client asked Ingo to broker this contract. Motives are important in roleplaying a memorable NPC so give it a little thought. Then allow the players to ask questions about the client and contract even though Ingo will protect his client’s identity and may not know all the motives of his clients. The blacksmith mark on the broken blade is important and you may want to draw a symbol to give to your players for their notes. They will be searching for weapons with this mark while adventuring through Khundrukar. You may allow Ingo to tell a bit of the Khundrukar story as he’s learned it from his client or set the players with the task of finding more info when they arrive in Blasingdel. However, the players should not know that the dwarven stronghold is currently occupied by orcs and other nasty creatures. Although it may be speculated that nasty creatures always dwell in dark forgotten places. You can read the intro in The Forge of Fury (FoF pg 33) to the players as something that Ingo would know and relate to the players. You will want to figure out how Ingo got the broken blade that he unwrapped from protective cloth in front of the players. Did he have a contact in Blasingdell? Did a client find it and decide to employ Ingo as a broker?


  • Ingo’s Mysterious Contract

    • Ingo presents the players with a contract related to the enigmatic broken blade, setting the stage for their journey.
  • The Significance of the Blacksmith Mark

    • The distinctive mark on the broken blade becomes a focal point, guiding the players in their search for weapons with a similar symbol.
  • The Enigmatic Broker

    • Ingo, with hidden history and secret connections, safeguards his clients’ anonymity. Players can negotiate terms, but Ingo is bound by his client’s wishes.


If you’re enjoying this then check out this Related content!:

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Khundrukar Awaits: Preparing for an Unforgettable Expedition
Khundrukar Awaits: Preparing for an Unforgettable Expedition

Ill. Goal-Setting in Saltmarsh


The players need a group goal for Saltmarsh: Starting a business, buying a house, buying a ship, or restoring Saltmarsh through treasure. In our playthrough I also had them select a name for their party and a brief 1 sentence background of how they all know each other. Story Cubes are great for helping kids and adults roleplay D&D.


Shopping for the journey: Saltmarsh has a variety of Items and all the starting gear-buying options from The D&D 5e Players Handbook can be made available as well as pack animals. However, remember to remind your players of the atmosphere of Khundrukar and Dwarven mines as well as the secondary optional request from Ingo to make a detailed map of Khundrukar. At this point, you should make sure each of your players has a way to keep track of their inventory. Instead of item weight, we like to use item “slots” at our table. Here’s the sheet we use: 5e Inventory Tracking Sheet.


  • Business Ventures Await

    • Players have the option to set group goals in Saltmarsh, whether it’s starting a business, purchasing property, acquiring a ship, or contributing to the town’s revival through treasure.
  • Equipping for the Journey

    • Players should consider the unique challenges of Khundrukar and Dwarven mines when acquiring gear and supplies.

IV. The Trek to Blasingdell


You may roleplay this journey to Blasingdell using random encounters and or skill challenges. However, It’s okay to fast forward here instead and remember to reduce the rations for however many days away you set the town of Blasingdell. The encounters and skill challenges can be saved for the trek between Blasingdell and Khundrukar. The trek to Blasingdell can also be used to introduce the characters or use Story Cubes to roll up interesting facts and rumors into the backstories of their characters and party as a whole. D&D made an excellent Wilderness Travel Kit that’s super useful for trekking overland.


DnD D&D 5e Wilderness Survival


  • Roleplaying the Journey

    • The journey to Blasingdell provides opportunities for roleplay, random encounters, and skill challenges. Dungeon Masters can fast forward if necessary, adjusting rations accordingly.
  • Building Backstories

    • Utilize Story Cubes to infuse interesting facts and rumors into the backstories of the characters and the party during the trek.
Forge of Fury Blasingdell
Blasingdell: A Close-Knit Mining Town on the Path to Adventure

V. Arrival in Blasingdell


In our playthrough, we read the last paragraph in the dialogue box on FoF pg 34. The players have arrived in Blasingdell at whatever time you set but, in our playthrough, the players arrived at night forcing them to find lodging. Have the townsfolk react accordingly as they may not see many adventurers come through. However, you may describe and build up Blasingdell as you wish. It is described as a mining town so it may be nestled into mountains and may have a small to large mining corporation. Maybe the mining corporation digs for something like ore, coal, or some item only known to your world creation. Because the town is labeled as population 2000 it’s probably a labor-intensive close-knit town. You can populate it with any race although I would leave out Orcs and Dwarves due to its close proximity to the target destination. If you wish to drain more of your player’s resources you may inflate the prices of things due to Blasingdell being off the beaten path. In our run-through, the players didn’t want to pay the inflated Inn price and tried to sleep outside only to be confronted by town guards to move along. The guard found the players to be kind and suggested a home of a friend of his, The friend allowed them to sleep in the barn for a negotiated price. The next morning the players were invited to breakfast at the friend’s home and the players asked some questions about Khundrukar.


  • Welcoming the Players

    • Blasingdell, nestled in the mountains, welcomes the players. With a population of 2000, it’s a close-knit, labor-intensive mining town. Interactions of townsfolk with adventurers may be limited.
  • Crafting the Town’s Atmosphere

    • Populate Blasingdell with diverse races, omitting Orcs and Dwarves due to their proximity to the target destination of the old dwarven stronghold Khundrukar. Consider adjusting prices to reflect the town’s isolation from the main distribution routes that larger cities enjoy.
  • Navigating Accommodations

    • Players may face challenges with accommodations in Blasingdell. Negotiating with locals and finding suitable lodgings can add depth to their journey.

VI. Inside Blasingdell


Most of the mining equipment is made by and for the mining corporation but surplus items are sold at its very small outlet store. Groups of miners transitioning off shifts can be seen leaving or arriving at work throughout the day. The names of people and places should be randomly generated as you need them and remember to write them down for future reference. If the players seek advice about Khundrukar using roleplay and proper skills then they may be rewarded with one advantage roll each on any d20 roll that pertains to Khundrukar. They may also be rewarded with a permanent +1 to Navigation checks for their first-day travel towards Khundrukar. 


Optionally you could have someone describe having seen a man with a broken blade he found, who claimed it must be from Khundrukar. This man would possibly be Ingo’s client who either lives in Blasingdell or passed through weeks before. Something interesting could be made of that connection.


Tracking The Broken Sword of Ingo the Drover.


  • Mining Town Dynamics

    • Most of the mining equipment is made by and for the mining corporation. Surplus items are sold at its very small outlet store. Groups of miners transitioning off shifts can be seen throughout the day.
  • Gaining Insights and Advantages

    • Players seeking advice about Khundrukar using roleplay and proper skills may be rewarded with advantages and a permanent +1 to Navigation checks for their first-day travel towards Khundrukar.
  • Intriguing Connections

    • Optionally, introduce a character who claims to have seen a man with a broken blade, possibly Ingo’s client, and the blade that he unwrapped in front of you. This connection could lead to interesting twists.
Gear Up: Essential Supplies for the Khundrukar Expedition
Gear Up: Essential Supplies for the Khundrukar Expedition

VII. Additional Resources and Supplies


Blasingdell is the only town between the players and Khundrukar so this will be their last chance to pack up before heading out into the trackless wild towards the Stone Tooth Mountain. In our playthrough, we set Khundrukar 2 days from Blasingdell through thick forests and wetlands called the trackless wilds. We used skill challenges as described by Matt Colville on YouTube.


Also, it might be good to allow your players to hire a torch bearer or two through word-of-mouth tips from townsfolk as the players roleplay through Blasingdell. Torchbearers are great for getting the players to load them up with torches and all sorts of important items and then through some event within Khundrukar they become frightened and run off deep within the mine with all the stuff. It makes for fun times!


Adventure forth into Khundrukar


Potions and rations may need to be purchased through word of mouth since Blasingdell is a small town. Perhaps people know of an alchemist, herbalist, or ex-mine cook used to making rations. I would imagine that martial weapons would be hard to come by in a mining town but perhaps someone has some adventuring history or has collected a couple of pieces they’d be willing to part with for a small sum. Once the players have gathered enough info and supplies it is time to head towards Khundrukar.


This is a great time for real-life snacks if you’re playing with kids! I’d trade my left weenis for a pack of these Sour Skittles! Plus we like to use them to represent various potions! Give it a try, it’s fun!



  • Hiring Torch Bearers
    • Allow players to hire torch bearers, providing them with essential items. This may lead to unexpected events within Khundrukar as their humanoid “pack persons” run off frightened with everything the players have!
  • Acquiring Potions and Rations
    • Players can obtain potions and rations through word of mouth in Blasingdell. Seek out an alchemist, herbalist, or ex-mine cook for essential supplies.
  • Securing Weapons
    • While martial weapons may be scarce, players may find individuals with an adventuring history willing to part with some for a small sum.


Conclusion: Embarking on the Khundrukar Expedition


Armed with knowledge, supplies, and a sense of purpose, the players are now ready to embark on their expedition to Khundrukar. The mysteries of the Forge of Fury await, promising an adventure filled with challenges, discoveries, and unforgettable moments. May the dice roll in their favor! Happy adventuring! See you in Part 2 of this series!


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