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the undead warlock 5E D&D van richten's guide to ravenloft

Become the Monster as The Undead Warlock from Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted venture into the Domains of Dread and play with dead things like The Undead from Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft. This Otherworldly Patron for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons slowly transforms a warlock into a form best suited to carry out the will of their ancient undead benefactor. Let’s get into it.

D&D Ideas — Weapons

Welcome once again to the weekly newsletter. This week’s topic is weapons, which we discussed in our weekly live chat. We hangout every Monday evening at 8 p.m. EST on Nerdarchy Live to talk about D&D, RPGs, gaming, life and whatever nerdy stuff comes up. Magical weapons can be transformative treasures for any character and become a core part of their adventuring identity. Glaive of Wizardry is a magic weapon designed for squishy spellcasters to give them a cool melee option. Nerdarchist Ted created our very first Monthly Magic Item Card as the signature weapon of a powerful hobgoblin antagonist in a monthly game he ran on Nerdarchy Live and decided to share it with the D&D community. Beware the wizard wielding this legendary weapon! Find out more about it here. You can get the Nerdarchy Newsletter delivered to your inbox each week, along with updates and info on how to game with Nerdarchy plus snag a FREE GIFT by signing up here.

mtg wanderer's strike 5E D&D blind master

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game as a Blind Master

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted set out to build a fun and functional fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons character. Forums and social media posts ad nauseum discuss a particular character concept all the time. Many times over the years folks ask for our take too. Among the new character options in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything a new 5E D&D Fighting Style makes the Blind Master puzzle complete. The Blind Master character incorporates both magical and mundane methods as well as some pretty esoteric martial techniques and truly earns the title of master. Let’s get into it.

5E D&D wizard coven

Top 10 5E D&D Homebrew Arcane Traditions by a Factor of Three

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted explore homebrew feats for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons from D&D Beyond. We have a lot of fun checking out the 5E D&D content folks come up with and sharing their homebrew creations. (There’s lots of these posts whether for homebrew subclasses, magic items, spells, feats and more floating around for the curious.) This time around I’m peering into the subtle weave of magic that permeates the cosmos to check out the most scholarly class in 5E D&D — the wizard — and checking out the Top 10 homebrew Arcane Traditions. There’s currently over 1,500 homebrew of them so let’s get into it.

D&D alliances

Talk Your Way Into 5E D&D Adventure with Social Interaction

Not a day goes by when I don’t come across a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons Dungeon Master seeking help dealing with a character’s unusual features. One of these reached meme level long ago and doesn’t show any signs of going away any time soon — the Persuasion Expert. Many are the threads of lament and lengthy discussions on how Persuasion isn’t hypnotism, it’s too powerful, it’s abused by players and so forth. By the end of this post I suspect readers will tire of reminders about how it’s the DM — not the player — who determines when skill checks are made. Believe me when I tell you following the proper paradigm enhances the whole 5E D&D experience. But if you don’t I’ll employ a College of Eloquence bard’s Silver Tongue to show how. Let’s get into it.

5E D&D Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft backgrounds

Discover Your 5E D&D Character’s Horror Background with Van Richten’s Guide Backgrounds

Salutations, nerds! Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft sets up backgrounds a little bit differently from other fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons books. There are two in particular with suggested characteristics but as far as background features go there’s a list of those you can use for pretty much any other set. I like this. As someone who generally uses custom backgrounds anyway simply having the background feature to choose from is cutting out the middle man so to speak. Let’s take a look at what Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft reveals about backgrounds in this 5E D&D horror campaign setting.

5E D&D college of spirits bard van richten's guide to ravenloft

Channel Tales from Beyond as a College of Spirits Bard from Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted enter the Domains of Dread and explore the College of Spirits from Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft. This Bard College for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons uses occult trappings to conjure spirits straight from the legends and spooky stories they collect during their adventures. Let’s get into it.

Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft Preparing for Horror 5E D&D

Running Horror with Atmosphere and Accessibility in 5E D&D with Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft

Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft is Wizards of the Coast’s newest setting book for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons and it’s arguably the best release we’ve had so far. Much how Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything officially sanctioned many flavor customizations Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft contains several sections empowering Dungeon Masters and players to make 5E D&D their own. Among these options chapter 4’s Running Horror Games section provides guidance for preparation, during the session and afterward. This horror guide was phenomenal and easily makes the book worth picking up. I loved this section so much I made a whole video about how Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft completely changed how I run D&D forever.

Newest 5E D&D Unearthed Arcana Teases Curriculum of Chaos with Mages of Strixhaven

You won’t have to wait until Nov. 16, 2021 to study Strixhaven: A Curriculum of Chaos for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. The latest Unearthed Arcana 2021 — Mages of Strixhaven gives a peek at the syllabus of the wondrous magic university Strixhaven. The just announced book is a new 5E D&D crossover with Magic: The Gathering via the very popular expansion set from earlier this year. The opening to the Mages of Strixhaven Unearthed Arcana makes no illusions this playtest material is something special and they ain’t kidding. Let’s get into it.

Inspire 5E D&D Adventure by Reading the Tarokka Deck and Spirit Board from Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft

Salutations, nerds! It’s time to get down with some mystical woohoo stuff for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. By this I mean fortune telling and communion with the spirit world courtesy of Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft. I know you can’t see me but imagine me wiggling my fingers at you. This particular topic is near and dear to my heart because I myself am an avid collector of tarot cards, which the Tarokka Deck is based on for 5E D&D, and use them frequently. I’ve been reading for about 17 years now and whether you believe there’s any real magic in them or not there’s something really fun about turning over a card and seeing what the reading has to say for you. In Ravenloft this is doubly true. A draw of a card from the Tarokka Deck or contacting spirits or other mysterious forces via a Spirit Board can greatly change the shape of your 5E D&D adventure and this is really cool. So let’s get to it, shall we?

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game with Pride as a Rainbow Domain Cleric

Happy Pride Month! As a proud member of the Queer+ community and a Nerdarchy staff writer I really wanted to do something special for Pride Month this year — something that screams “I love Dungeons & Dragons and rainbows and all of that!” I kept wracking my brain of what we could do to offer some Pride positivity into the 5E D&D sphere. Chromatic spells are an obvious hook but they’re not quite potent enough for what I wanted to create. The more I thought the more the notion of a subclass surfaced in my mind.

Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft Preparing for Horror 5E D&D

Horror Pacing in 5E D&D with Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft

Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons is probably my favorite setting book to date from Wizards of the Coast. It has so many great resources for 5E D&D players and Dungeon Masters alike. Among my favorites is the section walking the DM through a step-by-step guide to running a horror game.

MTG hermit druid 5E D&D hermit background

Expanding 5E D&D Background Characteristics — Hermit

Salutations, nerds! I’m rolling on over to yet another background and focusing on the Hermit background in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. The background options in the 5E D&D Player’s Handbook offer suggested characteristics to help define a character and spark your imagination for roleplaying. Seclusion, contemplation and keeping away from the rest of the world in what is at the very least isolation represents the formative part of life for these 5E D&D characters. As with every background there’s a lot to chew on here so let’s get started.

MTG twinblade paladin 5E D&D holy paragon character

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game as a Holy Paragon

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel the community never lets Nerdarchists Dave and Ted down, sharing suggestions and requests for all sorts of fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons characters and for this one a player digs the idea of the holiest character around. Divine power permeates 5E D&D so the options are many but our prayers are answered. The Holy Paragon character combines divine lineage and personal conviction, eager to learn more about divinity and strengthen their faith through study and devoted practice. Let’s get into it.

Mandalorian armorer 5E D&D bounty hunter campaign

D&D Ideas — Armor

Welcome once again to the weekly newsletter. This week’s topic is armor, which we discussed in our weekly live chat. We hangout every Monday evening at 8 p.m. EST on Nerdarchy Live to talk about D&D, RPGs, gaming, life and whatever nerdy stuff comes up. Magical armor is one of the best treasures an adventurer can discover during their perilous quests. Armor equals protection at the very least and mythical abilities at the pinnacle of armor power. Armor of Fallen Leaves harkens back to earlier days of D&D and turned a shade of Nerdarchy in more recent times from one of our earliest modules. Now it’s the May Magic Item Card. While wearing this mystical armor you can transform into a swirling cloud of leaves! Find out more about it here.

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