The Nerdarchy crew experienced a tremendous year in 2019! We grew by leaps and bounds, earning a Silver Play Button for the YouTube channel, creating a wildly successful Kickstarter, organizing Nerdarchy the Convention and growing the website right here by hiring me full time along with staff writers Megan R. Miller’s increased role with us and the author and writer of this very post, Steven Partridge. Steven is a remarkable writer, a creative powerhouse and really a good-natured and great hearted fellow. The whole Nerdarchy crew is so happy to have him as part of the family. Steven regularly contributes fun, intriguing content here to help inspire better games and better friendships. Please go visit his website to see all the stuff he is up to here. But that’s enough of me hijacking his holiday tale! — Nerditor Doug
PAX Unplugged offered no shortage of things to see, hear and do over the three over the Dec. 6-8 weekend in Philadelphia. Far and away the best part of any game convention is spending time with friends gathered from far and wide. When they have a booth showcasing their really terrific game along with juicy news about the future direction of it then it becomes a takeaway moment from the whole event. Monocle Society CEO Kyle Kincade, creator of Weave, checked all those boxes. I made a beeline for the Monocle Society booth when I hit the convention floor to say hello and see what was happening with this wonderful game. The booth was abuzz with visitors learning more about Weave and playing demos, and it was fun watching Kyle and the team captivate convention goers. And me! I’m just as enchanted by Weave as the next nerd.
Hello gamers! Will you be attending PAX Unplugged this year? If you do you will have a chance to check out some amazing things. Nerdarchy will be in attendance walking around. You might catch us at a panel or two. And we’re guest hosts for the live Nolzur’s Marvelous Tutorials event with RealmSmithtv. We’re looking forward to meeting up with our Out of the Box partners like Norse Foundry and ArcKnight too. They’ll both have booths on the floor and it will be great to visit with them.
I’ve been watching the promotional video and pouring over the details for the Dungeon Draw | RPG Cards Kickstarter. My mind reels with the possibilities. Cards have long been my favorite kind of accessory for tabletop roleplaying games. Many of my favorite types of games are card based in general. Curating a deck of cards to enhance your own RPG campaigns sounded pretty cool. Custom cards, even better. Creating your own RPG cards whole cloth, now we’re getting somewhere. Becoming part of a creator community and marketplace for designing and sharing your custom cards, decks and artwork for others? You really are cooking up a little scheme here, aren’t you Dungeon Draw?
Hail and well met! I’m Sophie, and I’ve been invited to contribute to this esteemed community. I know — big deal. So, let me tell you my qualifications. Well, to start with, I’ve been playing hobby and tabletop roleplaying games since 1977. I started Dungeons & Dragons with the basic “blue box” edition back in 1978. That means I have dice older than some of you. Probably most. However, it’s not just that I’m older than the Nerdarchy guys, I also spent 13 years working in the gaming community.
Every single day the Dungeon Masters Guild adds new titles. At the time I’m writing this 14,184 titles stock the DMs Guild digital shelves and for every adventure, player option or Dungeon Master resource, somewhere along the line the author published their first one. This past week one of my favorite people in the D&D community to game with, Dylan Ramsey, published their first title. Dance of the Deathless Frost expands on Baldur’s Gate: Descent into Avernus with a whole new way to approach the 5E D&D adventure with new locales, NPCs and magic items, including vehicle stats for the Baba Yaga’s hut plus a chance to tame the demon lord Kostchtchie. If you’re a Dungeon Master, chances are you’ve created your own content along the way too, right? Maybe you adapted adventures from earlier editions, created new subclasses for your campaign setting, focused on an element of the game to expand on or a million other things. Consider taking the opportunity to add your creations to the DMs Guild! Players and DMs are always on the lookout for new stuff to add to our games, and maybe yours inspire someone else.
If you are like me, then you enjoy using minis in your tabletop roleplaying games like fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Minis add an enjoyable tactical side to the challenge of combat. But at times it can be so difficult to find the right mini, the perfect one with the right gear, right pose and even the perfect expression on their face. If you are not aware of Hero Forge than please let me introduce you to their wonderful products. I have purchased dozens of Hero Forge minis I proudly display in my collection. Their method of allowing the customer to perfectly design the exact mini they want makes them an ideal choice for selecting the mini for use at the gaming table.
Creating content for tabletop roleplaying games like fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons, or creating an entire RPG itself, brings enormous joy. You might homebrew stuff for your home game, make products for an online marketplace like the Dungeon Masters Guild or your own website, or launch crowdfunding campaigns to produce books, accessories and boutique items. Creating content aims to enhance enjoyment for players at the gaming table. But even after your material is complete, the job doesn’t end there. Dungeon Masters and entrepreneurial content creators always gotta be hustling. At the table we aim to engage players and hook them on what you’re bringing. When it comes to commerce, raising awareness is the name of the game. In either case, you’re selling what you’ve got to the audience. For this week’s D&D community spotlight, two products came across my desk by way of creators out there hustling, something I admire.
Part of my worldview is there’s always good things going on in the world, and there’s always bad things going on in the world, and I do my best to focus on the good. I saw this morning on Twitter a creator in our D&D community is experiencing a rough patch. Creator Cat Evans had some home repair troubles and they reached out for a helping hand through the content they’ve created at the DMs Guild. Cat’s books include material for both players and Dungeon Masters of fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons, so there’s something for everyone. Take a look and help Cat out by discovering cool new content for your 5E D&D games at the same time. See? Something bad happens and you focus on the good. You can find all 19 of their DMs Guild titles here.
There’s a little something for everyone at the Dungeon Masters Guild. A couple of creators got in touch with us to share their work; the Dungeon Masters Guild newsletter shared new stuff for characters, DMs and content designers; and we’re getting back to making stuff for the DM’s Guild ourselves with the Adventurers League Witch Doctor Character Build Guide adding to the marketplace this Friday, Oct. 18. A steady flow of new stuff continues to stock the digital bookshelves at the DM’s Guild, and this week we’re dipping a toe into DriveThruRPG too. The community content coming across my desk this week all had a common thread. Whether it was player-centric in the form of new character options or DM-centric like adventures there are strong worldbuilding opportunities in these products. I appreciate any D&D content that makes me start thinking about how it fits into and enhances a campaign setting.
Did you know over 4,000 new products stock the Dungeon Master’s Guild digital marketplace from 2019 alone? I read this on Twitter so you know it’s legit. Best-selling DM’s Guild author and cowriter of Baldur’s Gate: Descent into Avernus M.T. Black shared the tidbit the other day and it really got me thinking. When I was a young Dungeons & Dragons nerd, I’d haunt the single column of bookshelves at Waldenbooks, perusing the games and modules there. They numbered in the double digits at best. It’s a great time to be a D&D player and creator. The DM’s Guild offers a marketplace to share your creations with the world, and we’ve got many thousands of products to enhance our games to choose from — including many of those old classics I browsed back in the day. Here’s a small sample of some of the DM’s Guild products that crossed my desk this past week.
Are you looking for a new board game? Do you like board games with great options like competitive and cooperative, as well as solo play? Is repeat play value through variable quests important to you? And No. 1: do you want to play with a tribe of orcs? If you answered yes to all of these questions, or even some of them, then I have a game for you! Ravage — Dungeons of Plunder is a dungeon delving board game where you play orcs, with three modes of play.
Longtime visitors here to Nerdarchy the Website may remember the very first Out of the Box encounter posted right here about three and a half years ago. Mike Gould, the writer, remains an invaluable resource for the Nerdarchy community and we were so excited to launch our very first Kickstarter with Mike’s work in the spotlight. We set out to make a hardcover book of our own, and because of the support and encouragement from the RPG community we do so much more. We met all our stretch goals, including several that evolved because of the Kickstarter’s remarkable fundraising. And now the Out of the Box Pledge Manager is live, so backers can complete their surveys and anyone who missed the Kickstarter can make late pledges. This is a perfect opportunity to get your copy of the Out of the Box book, our entire digital library and more at special pricing — not to mention badges for Nerdarchy the Convention in 2020.
The fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons creative community shares their enthusiasm in lots of ways. One of those ways is the Dungeon Master’s Guild, an online marketplace where people all over the world create new content for D&D. With Halloween just a few weeks away here in the US, the jack-o’-lantern light is shining on spooky holiday themed adventures and material, so this week let’s focus on some of the Halloween D&D adventures at the DM’s Guild.
Baldur’s Gate: Descent into Avernus released recently. The fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign adventure is the latest from Wizards of the Coast, and as always the creative D&D community is sharing their enthusiasm for the hellish new quest. In sales, Descent into Avernus is No. 173 on the Amazon Best Sellers Rank for books, and No. 3 for Dungeons & Dragons behind the Player’s Handbook and the Essentials Kit. New players continue to discover the game and the PHB + Essentials Kit sales, with Descent into Avernus right behind, suggests they’re diving right into the hobby. And there’s a ton of content being created by gamers and designers to support Descent into Avernus, too.