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Author: Doug Vehovec

Nerdarchy > Articles posted by Doug Vehovec
mtg loxodon wayfarer

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game as an Elephant in the Room

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted lean into an appreciation for puns to sneak in a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons Elephant in the Room character. This 5E D&D character build focuses on stealth both magical and mundane to demonstrate how with the right training and experience an unusual lumbering giant of a race can vanish before your very eyes. Let’s get into the loxodon master of stealth.

Ajani Adversary of Tyrants 5E D&D fighter martial archetypes

Top 10 5E D&D Homebrew Martial Archetypes by a Factor of Three

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted enjoy looking at fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons homebrew content contributed to D&D Beyond. While they explore homebrew magic items on the DDB website — including one from Matt Mercer — I’m taking a look at another 5E D&D class and the homebrew subclasses folks created there. (There’s lots of these posts whether for homebrew subclasses, magic items, spells, feats and more floating around for the curious.) This time around my gaze turns to my favorite D&D class. Fighters come equipped with the best foundation to manage one third of the game. In other words as we like to say around here fighters fight. This leaves tremendous space to add variety to a fighter character. There are fighter subclasses in the Player’s Handbook, Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount and Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything and outside of official sources there are countless Martial Archetypes created by players all over the world. We put the finishing touches one of the the ones we’ve created just this past week and shared it along with a bunch of other new subclasses, spells, magic items and creatures. Now it’s time to check out the Top 10 homebrew Martial Archetypes. There’s currently over 325 homebrew of them so let’s get into it.

5E D&D sapphire dragon gem dragon

Newest 5E D&D Unearthed Arcana Provides Path to Draconic Power

New playtest documents for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons have been rolling out recently and presenting new options for characters to explore. Unearthed Arcana 2021 — Draconic Options is the latest one to continue the trend with new race options, which revamps the dragonborn and kobold races for players. Both of these, especially the former, have widely been considered weak options despite the great affection players hold for them. It’s also interesting to note the alternating approaches as either lineage or race. Along with these fresh takes on draconic races this Unearthed Arcana presents a handful of feats and seven new spells for 5E D&D. So let’s get into it.

Getting More from 5E D&D Monsters — Kangoram

Kangorams make spirited mounts. These bipedal creatures reach heights over 10 feet tall and their powerful legs mimic the bounding gait of part of their namesake while thick skulls and curling horns belie the other half. A ridge of bony plates runs down their back to the tip of their tail, which they balance on to deliver powerful kicks. Druids who understand these unusual beasts know the way to train them as a powerful mount lies in steering them away from their forward focus to exert control. These beast monsters appear in Chimes of Discordia: Fantastical Mounts, one of the digital fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons products we create for Patreon supporters and later for Nerdarchy the Store. Here you’ll find expanded 5E D&D content inspired by these exotic beast creatures along with the stat block as it appears in the book ready to drop into your games.

MTG Cunning Nightbonder Slitherwisp

Looking Forward to Dungeons & Dragons: Adventures in the Forgotten Realms and Strixhaven: School of Mages for MTG Arena

While it’s true creating content related to fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons and Fifth Edition generally keeps Nerdarchy the Lights on we all enjoy plenty of other games too. And since this site remains primarily our blog it’s fun to share those other game experiences from time to time. Makes us relatable and whatnot. Way back when I was a junior in high school and got into Magic: The Gathering with the Revised Edition it was exciting to eagerly await The Dark’s release. Here I am 26 years later looking ahead to a Dungeons & Dragons: Adventures in the Forgotten Realms in a few months along with Strixhaven: School of Mages at some point. I’ve dug when the MTG multiverse crosses over with the D&D one and it’s neat to see worlds colliding the other direction now too. But most of all I’m wondering what juicy bombs I’ll find in those sets.

Top 10 5E D&D Homebrew Ranger Archetypes by a Factor of Three

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted have taken a shine to my posts over here looking at fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons homebrew content contributed to D&D Beyond. There’s lots of these posts whether for homebrew subclasses, magic items, spells, feats and more floating around for the curious. Since spring is in the air and I’ve been out working the garden this week I’ve got the natural world on my mind so today I’m focusing on the 5E D&D ranger. (Druids got their fair share already!) There are ranger subclasses in the Player’s Handbook, Xanathar’s Guide to Everything and Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything and outside of official sources there are countless Ranger Archetypes created by players all over the world. We put the finishing touches one of the the ones we’ve created just this past week and shared it along with a bunch of other new subclasses, spells, magic items and creatures. I’ve definitely got the 5E D&D ranger on my mind and I’ll pluck out the Top 10 homebrew Ranger Archetypes. There’s currently over 925 homebrew of them so let’s get into it.

5E D&D College of Eloquence bard Tasha's Cauldron of Everything

Speak Your 5E D&D Truth as a College of Eloquence from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted master the art of oratory to discuss the College of Eloquence Bard College for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Storytelling potential from this Bard College from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything ranks high in my book like most 5E D&D subclass options beyond the Player’s Handbook. Over the lifespan of any edition of the game the character options tend to become increasingly niche. As my perspectives grow and change I’m refining how I view the relationship between storytelling potential and mechanics and I’m curious to discover where I land on the College of Eloquence so let’s get into it.

5E D&D College of Creation bard

Come to that Fantastic Note with College of Creation from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted strike a cosmic chord to discuss the College of Creation Bard College for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. When it comes to storytelling potential this Bard College from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything hits the ground running with extremely evocative introductory text. This flavorful section even folds some new lore into the D&D multiverse through the concept of the Song of Creation, which points to legendary draconic entities Bahamut and Tiamat as the first singers of this cosmic music. While my approach to 5E D&D starts with story more than mechanics I’m discovering the latter impacts my perspective more than it used to, at least as we continue these deep dives into the subclasses found in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything. So far they’ve all been oozing with storytelling potential but in many cases the mechanics either fall flat or illustrate power creep. I’m curious to see where the College of Creation falls so let’s get into it.

5E D&D path of wild magic barbarian tasha's cauldron of everything

Form Doesn’t Meet Function for Path of Wild Magic Barbarians from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted took a walk on the wild side to talk about the Path of Wild Magic Primal Path for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons barbarians. This unusual Primal Path is found inside Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything. Since my approach to D&D always centers on the story more than mechanics in 5E D&D the same as it did when I started playing the game with the classic Red Box whenever I check out new 5E D&D material from Wizards of the Coast, our own content or any other creators I’m most interested in how these characters, objects and places inspire the gaming experience. This applies whether I’m the Dungeon Master or not and my perspective often surprises people, these days mostly because of the sort of work I do. Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything introduced lots of exciting new subclasses to the 5E D&D and I’m gonna explore my own deep feelings about the Path of Wild Magic and what it brings to the table.Let’s get into it.

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game as a Social Magica Master

I know I’m not the only one who’s positively delighted by the way Jester makes use of the fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons sending spell in Critical Role’s story of the Mighty Nein. Over the course of the second campaign Laura Bailey’s character developed into the party’s premier expert when it comes to communications. On a larger scale the players make use of lots of spells and features to stay in touch with and keep track of friends and enemies all over Wildemount and beyond. They’ve communicated across time and space and these practices have a tremendous impact on the campaign.

D&D-izing Galvatron from Transformers: The Movie

While scheduling social media posts recently I came across a great D&D meme inspired by Transformers: The Movie. I mean of course the 1986 animated film and not the Michael Bay series of movies. To each their own but for my two energon cubes the animated movie rocked then and still rocks now. I saw it in the theater when I as nine and every so often I’ll watch it again for fun and it still holds up. One of the best parts of the movie is the transformation of Megatron into Galvatron, an upgraded form bestowed by Unicron after the Deception leader was nearly destroyed in a deadly assault against their Autobot enemies. At this point in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons there’s so many character options without even delving into third party stuff and it got me thinking what the villainous minion of Unicron might look like in 5E D&D terms. Curious? Here’s a hint.

5E D&D ranger

Best in Show 5E D&D Magic Items for Rangers

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted naturally explore the best magic items for rangers in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Like previous discussions on top magic items for various character classes in 5E D&D this is an unusual topic because it’s rare for a character to choose magic items. There’s a few cases I can think of off the top of my head. In Adventurers League play items can be traded on a one-for-one basis for items with the same rarity at a cost of 15 downtime days unless they’re playing at the same table. Also games beginning beyond 1st level often allow for players to choose magic items, like in our own monthly fan one shots. Looking at 5E D&D magic items is difficult for an entirely different reason though. The best of anything is subjective if for no other reason than campaigns are as diverse as the people playing them. Once again I’m checking out the homebrew magic items at D&D Beyond to complement the video and leaning into this subjectivity. For each type of magic item (excluding potions and scrolls) I’ll consider the rating, views and adds for each kind and choose the one I think best serves a druid. Let’s get into it.

Wringing Out 5E D&D Challenge Rating and Encounter Building

Pack mentality is a hell of a drug. I always get a kick out of the chorus of cries whenever the fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons challenge rating system comes up. The most recent time made me realize I’ve been remiss all this time. The Nerdarchists made a video about it and just about every other YouTuber who talks about 5E D&D too. Social media conversations, in person conversations, blogs (even this one!) all weigh in mostly to chime in on how it confuses them, doesn’t work for them or provides impractical guidance to them. I’m in a sassy mood this weekend so I’ll summarize — they fail to understand the whole because they focus on one or a only a few parts. Let’s get into it.

5E D&D frost king arctic hobgoblin

5E D&D Warlocks are Dumb (or) Eldritch Blast Spammers

It’s only clickbait when the crucial bit of information you really want to know is omitted! But since you’re here reading you might as well stick around. After years of fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons games playing all but one character class I’m nearing the end of my first campaign playing a warlock for the first time. I have thoughts. Spoiler alert: these thoughts are about reconciling what always bothered me about warlocks, how spamming eldritch blast is the way to go and to a lesser extent confirming what I’ve always suspected — The Undying Otherworldly Patron sucks. So let’s get into it.

dscryb undead giant RPG boxed text

Make RPG Experiences Come Alive Through Finely Crafted Boxed Text

My personal Game Master style has been described to me as descriptive and evocative and this greatly pleases me. Whenever I play a tabletop roleplaying game the juice for me is imagining what it is like for a character existing in whatever settings and surroundings the game entails. So when I’m behind the GM screen it’s important to me to elicit the same immersive experience for the other players. Conjuring vivid imagery of people, places and things helps players put themselves in their characters’ perspectives and brings the world and the game itself to more vibrant life. The folks behind dScryb feel the same way and they’ve put together a terrific resource to help GMs free up their time and create a sensory experience to help set the narrative tone, introduce scenes and spotlight what is important in your worlds of epic fantasy.

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