Someone at Dungeons & Dragons has a deep love for Sean Connery and some of his most famous films.
We reported earlier this weekend that the newest Dungeons & Dragons adventure Waterdeep - Dragon Heist had a hidden reference to the movie Zardoz, a cult classic sci-fi film starring a mostly naked Sean Connery. We've now discovered a SECOND Easter egg to a Sean Connery movie, this time referencing one of Connery's most famous roles.
One of the four villains that players can potentially face in Waterdeep - Dragon Heist is Jarlaxle Baenre, a famous drow mercenary. Longtime D&D and fantasy fans will recognize Jarlaxle as a popular supporting character in the Drizz't series of novels, but this time Jarlaxle takes the spotlight as one of the many parties seeking a secret treasure hoard hidden somewhere in the city of Waterdeep.
Jarlaxle has plenty of contingencies and secret plots, including his hidden trump card to escape from Waterdeep should his plans go sideways. Hidden in the waters surrounding Waterdeep is the Scarlet Marpenoth, a magically-powered submarine.
While the Scarlet Marpenoth sounds like a random name, it's actually a subtle reference to The Hunt for Red October, a famous Tom Clancy novel about a Russian submarine captain that defects to the United States. Sean Connery starred in the movie adaptation as the Russian submarine captain Marko Ramius.
The Scarlet Marpenoth appears to be the Forgotten Realms version of the Red October. Scarlet, of course, is a shade of red, while Marpenoth is the 10th month of the Faerun calendar...AKA the equivalent to October. Of course, it doesn't appear to have the famous caterpillar drive used by the Red October to avoid detection, but it does come with a full team of gnomes that help maintain and pilot the ship.
Unlike the other villains in Dragon Heist, Jarlaxle isn't necessarily an evil character. He wants the money to pursue his own goals, and he appreciates those who manage to outsmart him and his complex schemes. And while he has no problem killing those who get in his way, he's much more likely to try to bribe the players with a share of the gold rather than engage in open combat with them (although he'd likely win that fight, especially against low level PCs). Jarlaxle has the potential to become one of the most intriguing NPCs the players meet during their time at Waterdeep, whether as friend or foe.
Waterdeep - Dragon Heist is now available at game stores and will be available at other retail locations starting on September 18th.