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Gateway to the Savage Frontier is a Dungeons and Dragons computer game developed by Stormfront Studios and published by Strategic Simulations, Inc. for the Commodore 64, PC, and Amiga personal computers. The title was the #1 selling MSDOS game in North America in August 1991.[1]

Welcome, Travellers, to the Forgotten Realms. Our story takes place in the western lands between Icewind Dale in the North and Waterdeep in the South. To the West the Sea rolls to the shore and the eastern border is made up by Anauroch, the impassable Great Desert.

Exactly this notorious desert the evil armies of Zhentil Keep are planning to cross, to subdue the western lands and so further tighten their already iron grip on the Forgotten Realms. To achieve so vast a goal, they need magic items of great power. And that's where YOU come into play...


The adventurers are given the ring of reversal and use it to repel the Zhentarim's creatures.

The party starts off in Yartar, having just escorted a caravan from the dwarven stronghold Citadel Adbar, ruled by the dwarf king Harbromm. At the tavern, while the party is enjoying a feast and spirits, something is slipped into their food that causes them to pass out, and they are robbed of all gold and gear, especially the magic longsword that one member used to slay a griffon at Longsaddle. Fortunately, each character keeps a purse of coins under their pillow so they can buy armor and weapons.

By rescuing Krevish, the party is hired by the Kraken Society in Yartar to assassinate a cleric of Bane at Nesme, only to discover that this evil priest was the only individual standing in the way of the conquest.

The party rescues the magic-user Amelior Amanitas from Everlund, an eccentric and somewhat absent-minded wizard who explains how to stop the Zhentarim. Returning to Yartar, the party is captured and imprisoned in a Kraken base below the city. There, the magic longsword stolen at the start is recovered but the party has to fight four giant squids in a huge tank before escaping.

They must find four magical statues scattered across the frontier before the Zhentarim, led by a General Vaalgamon, gets to them. Zhentil Keep plans to use these magical statues to open a way through an otherwise-unpassable desert for their armies. Finally they travel to the dead city of Ascore to end the Zhentarim plot, and the Battle of Ascore begins. If successful, the party are hailed as the "Heroes of Ascore", which is carried over into the sequel.


The gameplay is similar to other games in the Gold Box collection. The player creates and manages a six-member party of adventurers following the AD&D rules. The game is first-person view, and uses turn-based combat. There is a world map travel mode, which allows for enemy encounters and side quests. Side-quests are activated by finding and talking to certain NPCs.[2]



Erek, the protector of Amelior Amanitas, may join the party for part of their quest.

Heroes of Ascore
Amelior AmanitasBroadhandCeptienneKestutisNasher AlagondarOlger RedaxeTessarin AlaraunVaalgamon
Referenced only
Geildarr IthymHarbrommManshoonNanathlor GreyswordPhintarn Redblade


aarakocraankhegbasiliskblack dragonboarbugbeardisplacer beastdragondwarfefreetielfettinfire giantghoulgiant froggiant lizardgiant sluggiant snakegiant spidergiant squidgnollgnomegoblingriffonhalf-elfhalf-orchalflingharpyhell houndhill gianthobgoblinhumankrakenlizardmanmanticoremargoylemedusamummyogreorcotyughowlbearsalamanderscragskeletonshambling moundsquidstirgestone golemtigertrollwyvernzombie


A blinding ray of light appears at the peak of a structure during the Battle of Ascore.

Battle of Ascore


The Arena beneath Llorkh, where the adventurers may become trapped.

Buildings & Sites
Arena beneath LlorkhGallant PrinceHall of JusticeHalls of VigilanceHosttower of the ArcaneHouse of KnowledgeKraken ComplexKraken HeadquartersMielikki's GladeRed Dragon Trading LodgeSundabar Hall of Justice
Inns & Taverns
Inn of the Glowing Gem
Three Rivers
Allis Lhyssich's Hand Crafted Weapons and Magical Weapons for Noble CausesBasanicas Boat RentalsBroadhand's Forge and TackThe River's Heart
Roads & Bridges
High RoadMoonbridge
EverlundGundbargLlorkhLuskanNesmeNeverwinterPort LlastSecomberSilverymoonSundabarUtterseaYartar
FrozenfarGundarlunHigh ForestNeverwinter WoodPurple RocksStar MountsTrackless SeaTriskTuernUtheraal
Delimbiyr ValeGray ValeSavage FrontierSilver MarchesWestern Heartlands
Referenced only
Citadel AdbarIce MountainsMoonseaNarrow SeaTrollmoorsZhentil Keep


Magic items
armor of the glacierbracers of defensecloak of displacementcloak of protectiondart of the hornet's nestgauntlets of dexterityincandescent blue ioun stonenecklace of missilespotion of extra healingpotion of invisibilitypotion of speedring of protectionring of reversalsword of Icewind Dalesword of stonecuttingwand of defoliationwand of ice storm
bestow curseblessblinkburning handscause blindnesscause light woundscharm personcure blindnesscure diseasecure light woundscursedetect invisibilitydetect magicdispel magicenlargefireballfriendshastehold personinvisibilityinvisibility, 10' radiusknocklightning boltmagic missilemirror imageprayerprotection from evilprotection from evil, 10' radiusprotection from goodprotection from good, 10' radiusprotection from normal missilesray of enfeeblementread magicremove curseresist coldresist fireshieldshocking graspsilence, 15' radiussleepslowslow poisonsnake charmspiritual hammerstinking cloudstrength
Referenced only
flesh to stone


General Vaalgamon of the Bane-worshiping Zhentarim.

Arcane BrotherhoodCompany of the Brazen PennantHigh Captains of LuskanKraken SocietyLords' AllianceShip BaramShip KurthShip RethnorShip SuljackShip TaerlZhentarim




banded mailchain mailleather armorpadded armorplate mailring mailshieldscale mailsplint mailstudded leather
Referenced only
holy water
arrowawl pikebardichebastard swordbattleaxebec de corbinbill-guisarmebo stickbroadswordclubcomposite longbowcomposite shortbowcrossbowdaggerdartfauchardfauchard-forkflailglaiveglaive-guisarmeguisarmeguisarme-voulgehalberdhammerhandaxejavelinjo sticklongbowlong swordlucern hammermacemorning starmilitary forkmilitary pickpartisanquarrelquarterstaffranseurscimitarshort bowshort swordslingspearspetumstaff slingtwo-handed swordtridentvoulge



  1. Gateway to the Savage Frontier undisputedly takes place in 1358 DR, and is based on events that happen in The Savage Frontier sourcebook, itself set in 1358 DR. Tessarin Alaurun had "just" seized control of the city of Nesmé in 1358 DR — the captain of the Riders of Nesmé also notes that "Longtresses Alaraun has taken over". The dwarves of Llorkh are still in hiding from the Zhentarim, who took over after the death of Phintarn, also noted in the same book. In addition, the merchant ship, the Gallant Prince, was confirmed missing in 1358 DR, and in the game, it explains that it had recently washed up near Port Llast.


Further Reading[]

Game Credits[]

From the game manual, the Gateway to the Savage Frontier Adventures Journal.

  • Design: Don L. Daglow
  • Programming: Linwood Taylor
  • Art Director: David Bunnett
  • Illustration: Sergio Lobato, David Bunnett
  • Map Graphics: Arturo Sinclair
  • Theme Music: Linwood Taylor
  • Encounter Authors: Don L. Daglow, Mark Buchignani, Cathryn Mataga, Linwood Taylor
Commodore 64
  • Design: Don L. Daglow
  • Programming: Mark Manyen, Mark Buchignani
  • Graphics: Sergio Lobato, Arturo Sinclair, David Bunnett
  • Music: Linwood Taylor
  • Encounters Authors: Don L. Daglow, Mark Buchignani, Cathryn Mataga, Linwood Taylor
  • Design: Don L. Daglow
  • Programming: Cathryn Mataga
  • Graphics / Artwork: David Bunnett, Sergio Lobato, Arturo Sinclair
  • Art Director: David Bunnett
  • Project Manager: George MacDonald
  • Writing: Mark Buchignani, Don L. Daglow, Cathryn Mataga, Linwood Taylor
  • Sound Effects Driver: John Ratcliffe
  • Music Production: Linwood Taylor
  • Journal Entries in Manual: Don L. Daglow
  • Game Development: George MacDonald, Rick E. White
  • Documentation: Richard Wilson
  • Playtest Manager: Larry Stephen Webber
  • Playtesting: Philip L. Alne, Mike Balajadia, Glen A. Cureton, Cyrus G. Harris, John Kirk, Alan Marenco, Jason Ray, Jeffrey Shotwell, Eduardo Trillo, André Vrignaud, James Young, Dennis Zahina
  • Art, Graphic Design, and DTP: Peter Gascoyne (for Louis Saekow Design)
  • Pre‑Press Production: Ray Garcia (for Louis Saekow Design), Kirk Nichols

External Links[]



Gateway to the Savage FrontierTreasures of the Savage Frontier