Wizards of the Coast has published a sourcebook for the Nine Hells written by ex-Bioware developer James Ohlen and award-winning sci fi and fantasy author Adrian Tchaikovsky. Chains of Asmodeus was released on October 30, 2023 and is a 289-page DnD book currently selling on DMsGuild for $29.99. All proceeds have been pledged to the kids hospital fundraiser Extra Life.
Officially released by Wizards of the Coast, but worked on by writers from outside the company, Chains of Asmodeus appears to have had little marketing, and the DnD book seems to have slipped under the radars of many 5e fans as a result.
Chains of Asmodeus is a sourcebook and adventure set in the Nine Hells. As well as a high level infernal adventure for parties of levels 11-20, it contains 20 new DnD magic items, 50 new DnD monsters, and stat blocks for Asmodeus and the rest of the major Archdevils. Within its pages you’ll also find DnD maps of the Nine Hells, with details for each layer.
Right now the book is only available as a PDF, but the DMsGuild store page promises print on demand is coming soon.
While published by Wizards of the Coast, Chains of Asmodeus is produced by Arcanum Worlds, a third-party DnD publisher formed by ex-Bioware developers. Its members worked on DnD games like Baldur’s Gate I and II and other RPG titles such as Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic, then left to write DnD books in 2018. Their founder, James Ohlen, is Chains of Asmodeus’ project lead. His other work includes Heroes of Baldur’s Gate and Minsc and Boo’s Journal of Villainy.
The book’s lead writer is Adrian Tchaikovsky, a British author known for his Hugo-Award winning sci-fi series, Children of Time, as well as his earlier fantasy series Shadows of the Apt. He’s also written plenty of novels, and even a Warhammer 40k book. Tchaikovsky has long been interested in games like DnD. In fact, his first stories came out of a tabletop RPG he was running.
According to the DMsGuild store page, all the proceeds from Chains of Asmodeus will go towards Extra Life, a fundraiser for children’s hospitals that Wizards of the Coast has been supporting for years – for instance, through these funky Magic cards designed by children.
If you’re looking to get a bit infernal in your DnD campaign you might want to create a Tiefling 5e. You could also hop around on different DnD planes – check out our Spelljammer review and Planescape review for some ideas.