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Character Stories

Nerdarchy > Dungeons & Dragons  > Character Stories

Quantum Leap into Your Next 5E D&D Campaign

While talking with a friend recently I mentioned the idea of a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign based on the totally awesome science fiction television series Quantum Leap. This is a friend who’s played in my campaigns many times over the years yet never stepped into the role of Dungeon Master. Our conversation was aimed at encouraging him to run a game sometime and after playing a session I showed him my notes to illustrate how it’s nowhere near as complicated as he suspected. I could tell he was still unconvinced but when I mentioned creating a campaign inspired by Quantum Leap his whole demeanor changed. If he’ll ever run such a campaign (or any campaign!) remains to be seen but it seemed like a cool idea so I’ll share it here too. Let’s get into it.

Make 5E D&D Spells Your Own with Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

When the titular wizard of Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything first learned magic from Baba Yaga she couldn’t help but add spectral chicken legs to all her spells. Other spellcasters in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons incorporate their own style and flair into spellcasting too. Whether those spells come from the Basic Rules or any other source like the 21 new spells in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything remains the purview of each individual spellcaster.

Weird and Wonderful Warlock Otherworldly Patrons of 5E D&D

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted talk about splashing some levels in warlock to gain the Gift of the Ever-Living Ones Eldritch Invocation from Xanathar’s Guide to Everything. A warlock in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons makes pacts with beings more powerful and ancient than the mind can fathom. Rivaling the power of the gods warlock Otherworldly Patrons in 5E D&D are wily, wonderful and sometimes downright weird. Seeing this conversation got me thinking about the nature of splashing classes by taking only a few levels in a class to gain access to a particular feature and what that might look like in roleplay.

D&D community 5E D&D DMs Guild

Dumbest Character Death Experiences in 5E D&D

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted regale you with tales of woe from fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons all the way back to first edition Advanced D&D. They each share stories of ignominious character death from their time playing throughout all the editions of D&D. It happens to all tabletop roleplaying game players at some point (unless you play games without permanent death mechanics). Character death never bothers me all too much. Adventuring ain’t easy I always say and I don’t feel especially strongly that character deaths ought to be meaningful or impactful in an epic way. So let’s get into it.

5E D&D Tasha's Cauldron of Everything group patrons A GROUP OF WIZARDS PLEDGES THEMSELVES TO THEIR PATRON, TASHA, THE WITCH QUEEN

5E D&D Players Gel through Group Patrons from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

All of the Dungeon Master’s Tools wrapped up with a deeper look at Natural Hazards but chapter four in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything holds many more terrific modules of content for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. The book’s second chapter revisits a concept introduced with Eberron: Rising from the Last War and explores Group Patrons for 5E D&D. So let’s get into it.

Kate Sheridan comics and D&D

Managing Unexpected Sidekicks in 5E D&D

Salutations, nerds! Today we’re going to talk about what happens when your fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons party decides to adopt an NPC you didn’t expect them to like. (AKA the thing I do that is the bane of every Dungeon Master I have ever had!) If it makes you feel any better though I’ve had my share of players doing this to me as well. I have some wisdom to share on how to keep track of these 5E D&D character and creature sidekicks and make sure to keep things straight as you go.

fashion tabletop roleplaying games

Implementing Fashion Style into Tabletop Roleplaying Games

An element often under reported within tabletop roleplaying game character creation is fashion. I know you are going out to save fair maidens, rid the country of treasure stealing fire breathing dragons and stop evil liches from raising armies of undead. Mighty fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons adventurers are busy and may think they have no time for fashion but this is another element of roleplaying that can bring your game to the next level. When you think about 5E D&D character design a character’s fashion style should be taken into consideration. Fashion can illuminate so much more about your character without spoken words leaving an impact on other players, NPCs and the Dungeon Master.

Taking Advantage of Metaphorical Ruins for 5E D&D Characters

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted excavate ideas and concepts about ruins in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. If I’m honest after our recent live chat on the subject and accompanying newsletter I’m tapped on fresh ideas about ruins in 5E D&D at the moment. Fortunately I recently binge watched a terrific series and came up with a sideways approach to the topic I think can be useful for players and Dungeon Masters alike. So let’s get into it and see what we can takeaway from Marvelous Mrs. Maisel when it comes to ruins for our 5E D&D characters and campaigns.

tasha's cauldron of everything optional eatures

Opting for 5E D&D Character Options from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

Hey folks! With the release of Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons players and Dungeon Masters alike have been given a number of exciting new character options for Customizing Your Origin and creating a Custom Lineage. Strangely these new options seem to be met with mixed responses but like any optional rules they are merely a source of inspiration and variation to be adopted or not as individual groups of players see fit.

Critical Role RPG campaign

Fluff Like Your 5E D&D Character Backstory is the Game Too

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted examine how a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons character’s backstory functions as a tool for the player and Dungeon Master alike. Comments on the video run the range from enthusiasm for this component of 5E D&D character creation to dismissal completely. The modular and adaptable nature of the game itself makes all these perspectives valid but from my perspective backstory is like a lot of other elements of 5E D&D — sitting right there in the open but often glossed over because there’s no pluses and minuses attached. So let’s get into it.

Incorporating Lore into 5E D&D Experiences Invites Engagement with Worlds Both Real and Imaginary

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted go to the well to discuss lore in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. In general lore is a body of traditions and knowledge on a subject or held by a particular group and typically passed from person to person by word of mouth. This definition applies in our 5E D&D games too and encompasses both the lore presented in the game materials produced by Wizards of the Coast as well as the details specific to your world whether it’s your version of existing settings like Forgotten Realms or something you’ve created wholecloth. So let’s get into it.

5E D&D adventurers motivation This Is Your Life Xanathar's Guide to Everything

5 Sources of Motivation for 5E D&D Adventurers

Salutations, nerds! Today I’m sharing five reasons a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons character might be out adventuring. So often at the table a Dungeon Master asks what the party is doing at the beginning of a session and players pause before admitting they don’t know. This is fine! Sometimes you figure out a 5E D&D character’s motivations as you’re playing. Today I want to go down a list of reasons your character can run with and what kinds of adventurers fall under these umbrellas.

5E D&D lizardfolk

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game as a Lizardfolk with Racial Feats

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted get continue reimagining various creatures from fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons in exciting new ways and this time they’re looking at another classic from D&D lore — lizardfolk. These reptilian humanoids offer a ton of potential in 5E D&D when you look deeper than the primitive scaly creatures found in the Monster Manual. While they share fresh ideas for incorporating lizardfolk into your 5E D&D games I’m interested in expanding the possibilities for lizardfolk adventurers by creating some racial feats. So let’s get into it.

Magical Phenomena Materialize from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything

Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons players received an adrenaline shot with Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything injecting a huge number of new subclasses and character options. Like its predecessor Xanathar’s Guide to Everything the latest sourcebook includes a wealth of material for Dungeon Masters too. The back half of the book segues into a resources blending concrete rules with guidance for incorporating fun and engaging content into 5E D&D games. Layering adventures and encounters with these elements brings new dynamics to campaigns and this time around I’m taking a closer look at Magical Phenomena. So let’s get into it.

RPG game master player

Subpar Character Optimization is a Foolish Perspective for 5E D&D

Salutations, nerds! There’s a lot of discourse online about optimization of fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons character creation and what options to take when you level up. And honestly…we’re still talking about this? A lot? In 2020? In 5E D&D? This has to be an exaggeration. Excuse me a minute while I do a quick online search — oh. Oh, I guess we are.

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