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Author: Steven Partridge

Nerdarchy > Articles posted by Steven Partridge
aarakocra 5E D&D flying character

Take to the Skies of 5E D&D as a Flying Character with This New Feat

Flying characters aren’t nearly as good as you think in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. I know, I know — coming out the gate with a polarizing statement like ths immediately raises eyebrows. However even Nerdarchists Dave and Ted agree with this much as evidenced by a recent video on flying characters in 5E D&D. While I wouldn’t necessarily say I’m an expert on the matter I do play a flying character in our Those Bastards! campaign, as Prudence the feral tiefling. As such I feel I can offer some key insights into playing and running 5E D&D games with flying characters.

5E D&D oceans encounters Out of the Box

Failure is Fun in 5E D&D

Failure is fun. You read right — one of my favorite things in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons is failure. What’s more critical failure is one of my favorite optional rules to use in any 5E D&D game. Pulling from the Nerdarchy vault today I discovered a video from our archives that exemplify much of what I’m saying. Let’s talk about why.

Make Your 5E D&D Spellcaster More Versatile with the Cantrip Mastery Feat

Feats are one of my favorite optional aspects of fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Feats are fun and add a layer of unique customization to your 5E D&D character mirroring subclass features in terms of power level but a feat also allows you to distinguish your character’s flavor and development even beyond your other choices. Recently Nerdarchists Dave and Ted talked about the most popular homebrew feat creations on D&D Beyond. I cannot tell you how often I ponder what sorts of interesting feats I could concoct. Because I’ve been brimming with inspiration for making feats I want to share a new 5E D&D feat I concocted for full spellcasting classes called Cantrip Mastery. It’s inspired by the Optional Class Features from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything, which allow players to swap spells out.

Building Alternate Rules for Tools in 5E D&D

You heard me say it many times before — Tools are treated poorly in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Before you tool enthusiasts write me off, let me share some ideas for how to make the problem better. I’ve never been much for complaints without solutions. Recently Nerdarchists Dave and Ted touched on the tendency for us to hold onto legacy ideas as 5E D&D players. We do certain things simply because it’s how they’ve always be done.

5 Reasons Dice Goblins Make the Best D&D Players

Dice Goblin is a term that has emerged within the Dungeons & Dragons community to describe any player who hoards dice like a dragon hoards gold. For some the term rings like “hoarder” but many wear the title as a badge of honor. If I’m being honest I’m much more of a dice minimalist myself. I like to have my dice in neat rows with only a single set for any game at a time. Call me a D&D neat freak. I was recently thinking about dice goblins and if hoarding dice is really so bad a practice. In so doing I came up with five reasons dice goblins could be viewed as the best players to have in a D&D game.

Skillfully Designing New Skills for 5E D&D

Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons has taken the world by storm and I contend this is a big factor in the surge of popularity enjoyed by all tabletop roleplaying games of late. As the list of TTRPG options expands seemingly by the day new games offer their own spins on various mechanics and sometimes this leads people to find a new TTRPG option they like even better than the D&D that once held their hearts and minds. In an effort to bring new life to the world’s greatest roleplaying game I’ve devised a series of new homebrew options meant to streamline gameplay and offer some crunch to previously nebulous ideas. In this post I’m adding some crunch to 5E D&D skills.

5E D&D option

Streamline Your 5E D&D Game with Alternate Saving Throws

Many staple mechanics of fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons shape the greater genre of tabletop roleplaying game options. While 5E D&D is my favorite edition I have found myself wondering recently if perhaps this game couldn’t be even better. Is there a way to hack 5E D&D to make it more streamlined? Being the plucky adventurer I fancy myself to be I’m determined to try. In the previous post I wrote about an alternate ability scores and an option to streamline things regarding those. Today I’m taking the next logical option to explore with saving throws. For those of you who don’t know I have a YouTube channel and as part of #DungeonMarch I’m posting exclusively RPG content all month long.

5E D&D option

New Possibilities Abound with 5E D&D Alternate Ability Scores

Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons has taken the world by storm and it makes a lot of sense. The creation of the Open Game License (lovingly referred to as the OGL) opened the floodgates for creators to use a core set of rules for developing everything from supplementary materials for the tabletop to video games. This popularized many core aspects of the system and created genre staples and today I want to challenge one of those 5E D&D staples and offer my own take.

5E D&D Tasha's Cauldron of Everything Path of the Beast

Terrorize 5E D&D with the Path of the Beast from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons allows players to make their own characters with a variety of mechanics to support their favorite archetypes and custom craft their own unique person to play in a story woven by friends. Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything added a deluge of new options to the 5E D&D mix. Between the recent Unearthed Arcana introducing Gothic Lineages and the new announcement regarding Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft I can’t think of a better time to talk about the Path of the Beast Primal Path for 5E D&D barbarians.

5E D&D genie warlock Tasha's Cauldron of Everything

The Genie from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything Fulfills Your Wildest 5E D&D Wishes

Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything brings a menagerie of new subclasses to the fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons table. Most fall somewhere between feeling like they should have already existed in 5E D&D and adding something strikingly new to the base class. One embraces the elemental realms where magic flows freely and the concepts of servitude and patronage meet an opulent and ornate aesthetic. Enter The Genie Otherworldly Patron for 5E D&D warlocks.

5E D&D Tasha's Cauldron of Everything Soulknife

Soulknife from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything is the Best Heist Rogue in 5E D&D

Heist movies are a staple of cinema. They’re fun, smart and the thrill of danger is ever present. Heist encounters in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons scratch a similar itch and the rogue is an obvious contender for the class players should consider when pulling a high stakes heist. When it comes to heist rogues Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything offers arguably the best Roguish Archetype for the job — the Soulknife. Let’s look closer at this fun new subclass for the 5E D&D rogue and hopefully by the end I’ll convince you to bring one to your next heist themed escapade at the table.

Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything Fixes the 5E D&D Beast Master Ranger

Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons is full of new options for players and Dungeon Masters. The book adds new content for characters in 5E D&D and provide alternatives for existing character options. While 5E D&D has been incredibly successful many players feel certain discrepancies exist among the classes, frequently with the ranger at the forefront of these views. Several times over the years the 5E D&D design team released Unearthed Arcana playtest documents focused on the ranger class with one iteration removing magic from the class entirely. This muddies the ranger’s identity without really addressing the balance concerns. Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything offers new and exciting optional class features for all the core classes providing players a plethora of options to help each character feel unique — even those of the same class. The book’s Beast Master Companions optional class feature is the focus for this post.

Use This Circle of the Moon Druid for Your Next 5E D&D Game

When it comes to fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons the druid is probably my favorite class. Reasons for this abound. The 5E D&D druid is super versatile and comfortably fills the role of healer, defender, controller or damage dealer. Even when players focus on one particular aspect through one of the Druid Circles and other choices druid characters can still fill the other roles in a pinch. Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted cover one such aspect in a discussion about different Wild Shape forms a druid (specifically a Circle of the Moon druid) might use.

Make Flanking More Dynamic in Your 5E D&D Game

Flanking is an optional rule from fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons I’ve heard much debate on. The usefulness and overpoweredness of flanking and lacks thereof emerge in many 5E D&D discussions. Flanking is certainly a strange rule and much as I stated in the D&D Tag about the rules I just don’t get advantage is both generic and complicated — a bizarre duo to say the least. Nerdarchists Dave and Ted address this concern and others in a recent video. After watching I got to thinking about ideas to make 5E D&D combat more dynamic and homebrew rules to make combat faster paced and, well, engaging.

5E D&D frost king arctic hobgoblin

Avoid Boring 5E D&D with Bureaucracy

You’ve made it! The domain is saved, you and your party are renowned for your successes and the big baddie behind the first big bad has been soundly beaten. You’ve mastered rare and powerful magics. New upstarts look to you and yours as an example of what could be. Mechanically, you’ve just reached 10th level as a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons adventurer. Now what?

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