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DnD’s new Vecna adventure is about the importance of consent

Vecna: Eve of Ruin is a Dungeons and Dragons campaign about discovering secrets, but consent is crucial when getting NPCs to open up.

More details about Vecna: Eve of Ruin were shared in a press event on April 10, and they reveal a surprising theme in the upcoming DnD book – the power of consent. Senior game designer Amanda Hamon says the campaign challenges you to stop Vecna and his cults, who “steal secrets non-consensually” to gain power.

“Even before this adventure begins, Vecna has been embarking on a plan that’s many years in the making”, Hamon explains. “He’s been instructing his cult – which is across all DnD planes and DnD settings – to specifically extract important and powerful secrets.” These secrets come from stolen documents, infiltration, and kidnapped nobles.

DnD Vecna Eve of Ruin art of Vecna contacting one of his cults

Every stolen secret serves Vecna’s “Ritual of Remaking”, which Hamon says will give him enough power to “remake the multiverse to his own will”. But secrets can be used to stop Vecna too, provided they’re shared freely.

Early in the DnD campaign, the heroes are searching for some missing nobles, and they end up interrupting one of the cult’s rituals. As a result, Hamon explains, “they absorb a little bit of Vecna’s power and some of his personhood”. “They’re able to use that to harness the power of secrets in a good way and use this power against him.”

“Good way” is the big emphasis here. It sounds like NPCs in Vecna: Eve of Ruin need to willingly share their secrets if the adventurers want to benefit from them. Hamon says, if the characters earn the trust of NPCs, “these are secrets the characters can use to get mechanical benefits in combat – or save up for the fight against Vecna.”

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It’s not yet clear what the exact use of the secrets will be, but we’re looking forward to making those discoveries. Vecna: Eve of Ruin is released globally on May 21, but Dungeons and Dragons fans can access it early by pre-ordering on D&DBeyond or heading to their Local Game Store on May 7.

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