If I've counted correctly, there are ten published adventures for D&D 5e, but many more from earlier editions. I would like to make use of these adventures from previous editions; however, given my lack of experience, I don't know what issues may be encountered in the process of trying to run such adventures using the 5e rules.

What are the barriers to running published adventures from previous editions in 5e?

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    \$\begingroup\$ You seem to be asking one question in your title and a different one in the body. I assume you're more interested in the latter? Also, are you asking about such adventures in general, or White Plume Mountain in particular? (By the way, there's already an official 5e conversion of WPM in the Tales from the Yawning Portal book.) \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Mar 24, 2019 at 1:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ There is a related question here \$\endgroup\$ Mar 24, 2019 at 14:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ Given what I pointed out about White Plume Mountain, I imagine you may get some answers saying "just play the version in TFTYP". In light of that, I'd suggest editing the mention of that particular adventure out and focusing the question more generally on running adventures from previous editions in 5e. Also, could you read the question Korvin linked and clarify how your own question is distinct and not answered by that one? They seem very closely related, if not duplicates. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Mar 24, 2019 at 22:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast Korvin’s link does answer my question (Kuerten’s answer below is also very helpful though so I’m not sure if it’s best to take the question down or not) \$\endgroup\$
    – Greg0141
    Mar 24, 2019 at 23:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Greg0141: No need to delete the question! A diamond mod can mark it as a duplicate. (...I say a diamond mod because although community members can do so, it takes 5 votes to close or reopen a question - and those with the [dnd-5e] gold badge can close questions as duplicates or reopen ones closed as such by themselves, but it'd still take a few more reopening votes before I can then close it as a duplicate... :P ) Having duplicate questions is still useful to the community as a way to "signpost" users with the same question to the main one. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Mar 24, 2019 at 23:52

1 Answer 1


There aren't many barriers!

Many adventures published during the older editions of D&D are still useful for DMs of the fifth edition, mainly because the overall base of monsters and treasures across editions is quite similar, while the main aspect of the adventures – the plot – is usually untied to the rules of its original edition.

I am, right now, DMing some D&D 4E modules for my group, the H1-H2-H3 trilogy: Keep on the Shadowfell, Thunderspire Labyrinth, and Pyramid of Shadows. The adaptations I usually have to do are balancing the encounters and choosing the players rewards. I'm following the guidelines of the Dungeon Master's Guide and Xanathar's Guide to Everything for rewards and I haven't run into any trouble regarding converting these adventures.

Wizards of the Coast has an official conversion document that can help you convert older modules, rules-wise.

One important thing to notice is that White Plume Mountain is already officially converted to 5E. It was published in Tales of the Yawning Portal, a book that features a good number of adventures from older editions adapted to run in D&D 5E, including The Sunless Citadel, The Forge of Fury, Against the Giants and some others classic modules.

The Ghosts of Saltmarsh campaign, released in May 2019, also features conversions of some modules from older editions, this time, sea/pirate-based adventures.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Can confirm: 2e and 1e modules have been very easy to run in 5e, needing no preparatory conversion work, just refiguring ACs and hit bonuses on the fly. \$\endgroup\$
    – nitsua60
    Mar 24, 2019 at 4:01

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