The Temple of Elemental Evil: A Classic Greyhawk Adventure

aka: Der Tempel des Elementaren Bösen: Ein klassisches Greyhawk Abenteuer, El Templo del mal elemental: Una aventura clásica de Greyhawk, Il Tempio del Male Elementale: A Classic Greyhawk Adventure, Le Temple du Mal Elementaire: A Classic GreyHawk Adventure, ToEE, Świątynia Pierwotnego Zła
Windows Specs [ all ]
(prices updated 9/22 8:05 AM )

Description official descriptions

Temple of Elemental Evil is a turn-based role-playing game using the AD&D Greyhawk campaign setting with 3.5 version D&D rules. The game plot revolves around the (suspected) rise of evil, originating from the Temple of Elemental Evil.

In this game, players start with five generated (or pre-generated) party members in the start of the adventure (a maximum of eight, the later three comprising non-player characters). Unlike most AD&D games, the maximum level cap for characters in this game is the 10th level.

The party itself has an alignment (in addition to individual character alignments) which greatly affects the plot and choices the party makes throughout the game. Character alignments and the party alignment are now closely related. For example, a Lawful Good or Chaotic Evil character may not be selected within a True Neutral party alignment. Additionally, Paladins do not want to be in the same group with anyone evil.

Thus, depending on the party alignment (nine default alignments to choose from), players may either take the course of being the good heroes ridding evil from the land or be the evil raiders butchering anything that moves, all of which (may it be good, bad or neutral), may effect the party reputation.


  • 灰鹰:邪恶元素的神殿 - Chinese spelling (simplified)

Groups +



Credits (Windows version)

142 People (125 developers, 17 thanks) · View all

Lead Designer / Project Leader
Producer / Designer
Production Assistance
Lead Programmer
Lead Artist
Conceptual Designer / 3D Artist
3D / Environment Artists
Character Modeler / Texturer
Character Animator
2D Artist Intern
Map Implementation
Map Implementation / 3D Art Assistant
Voice Director
Compatibility Test Lead
Snr VP International Product Services
Republishing Team
[ full credits ]



Average score: 74% (based on 37 ratings)


Average score: 3.4 out of 5 (based on 52 ratings with 7 reviews)

Faithful conversion of the Greyhawk P&P module with the same name, spoiled by bugs

The Good
Arguably one of the best things one can say about ToEE is that it offers a very good computerization of the aforementioned pen & paper module. Even this statement has to be taken with a grain of salt, though, since the Gary Gygax' old AD&D modules aren't exactly notorious for their immersive storylines. Still, if you liked the old Gold Box series, you'll feel very much at home in the Temple of Elemental Evil. Unlike the rather terrible Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor, ToEE actually managed to make me think of it as a worthy successor to the Gold Box games.

The visuals are OK, far from breathtaking, but sufficient. One of the better things about ToEE is also that it's the first to implement the rather new D&D 3.5th Edition rules. Most of these actually work in the game, making it possible to do things like enchanting your own weapons and armor, scribe your own scrolls, brew your own potions and do more stuff like that for the first time in a (A)D&D game.

The Bad
The worst things I have to say about ToEE: it's terribly bug-ridden, and it lacks a LOT of polish.

The interface, having its roots in the not-so-bad one seen in Arcanum, is terribly sluggish. The mouse pointer crawls across the screen, scrolling speed is terrible, occasionally the game even "hangs" for MINUTES (no, really!) until it allows you to go on, there's a lot of issues with micromanagement (for example, if you want to move 10 unidentified potions from your Fighter to your Cleric, you'll actually have to drag and drop each one individually...), etc.

One of the worst things is also that there are NO item descriptions. Remember the ones in Baldur's Gate, where important magic items would even have their own background stories? In ToEE, you don't even get the most basic info, like what the item actually does, if it's not featured in the identified item's name. Some things can be looked up in the manual, others remain a mystery to people not familiar with the D&D ruleset.

As far as bugs are concerned, you'll encounter a LOT of crash to desktop situations, non- or malfunctioning items or spells, quests that can be "broken" under certain circumstances, and a lot more stuff like that.

Furthermore, the faithful conversion attitude has been taken a bit too serious, in my opinion. For example, identifying an item requires a pearl worth 100gp by the D&D rules. Thereby, Troika decided to make the spell consume 100gp, making it cost exactly as much as the storekeepers ask to identify items yourself using the spell. Especially in the early stage of the game, where 100gp is a LOT, this is very annoying.

Another example: all Gold Box veterans will fondly remember the "Fix" command, which made your healers automatically cast and re-memorize heal-spells until everyone in the party was fully healed up. There's no such command in ToEE, so the process of healing up your party can be quite a tedium.

Finally, the original ToEE module was for 1st Edition AD&D, and 3.5th Edition D&D handles a lot of things quite differently, which hasn't been taken into consideration at all. For example, the way creatures like Werewolves, Salamanders or even Trolls must be fought has changed a lot, which will force you to skip a lot of encounters early on and return to them later with most party-configurations. On the other hand, you can beat the final enemy of the game in a single combat round if you use the right tactics, obviously not making it the most thrilling of all showdowns. ;-)

The Bottom Line
All in all, by its heart, ToEE is a lot better a game than, say Ruins of Myth Drannor, the turn-based approach to combat is a welcome change to the RTS-styled battles seen almost everywhere these days.The lack of a "deep" storyline is disappointing, but actually has its roots in the namegiving P&P module.

If Troika get around to patching this one up HEAVILY, I'd at least recommend it to all gold-box-fans, or to fans of Icewind Dale which can stand turn-based-combat. In its current state, it just isn't worth the money, feeling unfinished and all.

Windows · by Cadorna (219) · 2003

Passes the time well, but won't be your favorite cRPG.

The Good
Despite all the flaws (and yes, I'm afraid most reviewers are mostly right: there are plenty), I found ToEE an addictive dungeon crawler. Imagine Diablo slowed down to a turn-based crawl...and turn back the graphics a few years. The monsters will often try your favorite cRPG tactics back on you: archers will move to the corners, avoiding getting caught in your fireballs; enemy "tanks" will close on your weakest party members; "infantry" will flank you to deal more damage. Plenty of bosses and huge assault teams make combat my favorite part of the game.

ToEE does a journeyman's job of putting the 'R' back in cPRGs: your party's starting alignment affects nearly everything you do in the game...and you can't play nice with everyone; you must make choices. (Of course, you're limited by the draconian AD&D rule set, but some people like that.)

Finally, there a couple of nice Troika-like touches: the male NPC who sings his way into combat, the female NPC who's a real battle axe, ...

The Bad
Like the original Gary Gygax module after which it was named, ToEE has plenty of dungeon spelunking and combat...and little else. If you don't know AD&D rules inside & out, you'll want to restart your party 4-5 times before you figure out key survival skills. You'll want to create your own party, rather than bother with NPCs for more reasons than in Baldur's Gate (annoying dialog, 'theft' of your loot, inconsistent alliance with your team).

And, although I didn't encounter any show stopping bugs and although most bug reports I've seen turned out to be have user-error or misunderstanding of ToEE's interpretation of AD&D, there are still too many bugs requiring work-arounds.

The Bottom Line
I think AD&D was great...on paper, but its rules were developed to support people without personal PCs. I prefer games that take advantage of the computer to allow new gaming systems (Morrowind, Wizardry, Diablo) rather than those that try to recreate the arcane system of AD&D.

All the more surprising to me, then, that I really liked playing ToEE.

I'm not sure if it was the smaller world...or mondo monster battles...or limited item set that forced you to be careful about party composition and development.

ToEE is a good way to pass the time between other games. It won't be your favorite cRPG, but then it doesn't need to be.

Windows · by Tennessee Ernie Ford (16) · 2004

A disappointment.

The Good
'The Temple Of Elemental Evil' shows its fangs as soon as you start the game: depending on your chosen alignment for the party the beginning changes from psychotic church burning to your regular do gooders on a mission to smite evil.

The graphics are very pretty, prettier than in Troika's previous RPG Arcanum. Music is okay and the voice acting is does its job.

The Bad
Granted, Troika had terrible pressure upon its shoulders after releasing fantastic Arcanum, so maybe everyone's expectations were a bit too high. I know I was a bit disappointed of how mundane the game felt in comparison of its predecessor.

Despite various different ways to start the game, it just didn't feel like the alignment really had such an major influence on the overall gameplay: you still can do all the good things you did when you were good even though you play with evil character. The people don't seem to care: You tell the high priest you've burned down a church of his religion. The effect is, that he won't heal you and will try to smite you down, but no-one else cares.

Also the game world seems a bit desolate in places. Especially the final Temple of Elemental Evil is like abandoned fortress filled with pretty pillows.

Also the gameplay is a bit annoying in places, even though very similar to other isometric RPG's. The biggest issue is, that in the combat situation is sometimes very hard to tell which one of your characters is about to make the move, or even to locate the combatant in question, especially if the battle is happening behind a wall, or there's a large number of enemies scattered around the team.

The Bottom Line
The Temple Of Elemental Evil is a disappointment after Arcanum. That is the only way to describe how I felt after playing the game through. As a RPG the game isn't anything spectacular. And that is a shame.

Windows · by tomimt (397) · 2006

[ View all 7 player reviews ]


Subject By Date
Troika Patching Nightmare v3.0 Indra was here (20635) Oct 9th, 2007
What's wrong with this game? St. Martyne (3644) Aug 5th, 2007


Cut Content

Most of the content, unique to playing an evil campaign was taken out of the game due to pressure by the publisher (Atari). An entire area with subquests (the brothel) was also removed because they were afraid to lose the T rating.

Luckily, the 'Circle of eight' fan group re-enabled the "Brothel" Map, NPC's, quest, and companion in their unofficial patches.


Upon release, the version out of the box was plagued with bugs: quests not ending properly, glitches in the D&D 3.5 rules, bugged items, crashes, monsters spawning in walls, ...

An eager fan community listed all the bugs on the Atari forums, hoping for a quick fix. When time passed and no patches appeared, one of the Troika developers stated in a post that Atari had ended the contract with them when TTOEE was released, so they wouldn't get paid for developing patches.

There's nothing worse than a bunch of angry gamers, so some fans decided to reverse engineer and decompile some of the code. They were successful and a group called 'Circle of eight' created custom unofficial patches that fixed all the bugs.

This was too much of a stain on the Atari corporate image, so they announced an official patch on 30th september, 2003. Almost two months after the release, on 10th november, 2003, the patch was finally available, but without the efforts and persistence of fans, the game would have stayed bug-ridden.


  • GameSpy
    • 2003 – Old School RPG Award (PC)

Related Games

Elemental War II
Released 2022 on Macintosh, PlayStation 4, Windows...
Hidden Escape: Lost Temple
Released 2019 on Android, iPhone, iPad
Stikbold!: A Dodgeball Adventure
Released 2015 on Android, Windows, Macintosh...
LucasArts Classic Adventures
Released 1992 on DOS, 1993 on Amiga
Might & Magic: Elemental Guardians
Released 2017 on iPhone, iPad, Android
Elemental War
Released 2019 on Macintosh, 2019 on Linux, 2021 on PlayStation 4...
Kingdom Elemental Tactics
Released 2006 on Windows
Elemental: War of Magic
Released 2010 on Windows
Adventure 1
Released 1982 on ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, 1984 on Amstrad CPC...

Related Sites +

  • Circle of Eight
    A fan group that has developed unofficial patches fixing various issues and restoring removed content such as the Nulb brothel and the quests associated with it.
  • The Temple of Elemental Evil
    Official website

Identifiers +


Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history!

Contributors to this Entry

Game added by kawaii.

Macintosh added by Foxhack.

Additional contributors: Unicorn Lynx, Indra was here, JRK, Atomic Punch!, Sciere, Patrick Bregger.

Game added September 30th, 2003. Last modified September 13th, 2023.