Over on Twitter we received a request to imagine the characters from The Office as fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons characters. As banner waving 5E D&D enthusiasts and (in my case anyway) a proud Dunderhead how can we refuse? I’ve already tipped my hand indicating this exercise focuses on the US version of the television series. Since realistically the employees of Dunder Mifflin would more than likely be commoners and other generic NPCs instead we’ll assume the day to day operations of the Scranton branch are an epic campaign and give them class and subclass options from 5E D&D.
Salutations, nerds! Today we’re going to talk about plot and the differences between what plot progress looks like in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons from the point of view of a Dungeon Master contrasted by the point of view of a player. Contrary to popular belief these are not the same thing. It can be easy to lose sight of from behind the DM’s screen, but we are privy to things our players are not. And as players this goes the same way — things that can seem like frustrating stalling out can actually be movement. So let’s talk about that for a minute.
Whatever the tale of woe, we have all heard a tabletop roleplaying game character backstory where the character is left with little or nothing good in their life and either left alone in the world or forced away from everything they know and love. While a backstory with brutal pathos can be fun and fit many character concepts, for an RPG character they seem so often to be the norm or at least near enough to it.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted answer a GM 911 from a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons player looking for guidance. In this case the player plays a high level assassin character and wishes to start their own assassin’s guild. They’ve already spoken with their Dungeon Master who expressed skepticism about the character’s ability to do this. In the video Dave and Ted go over things to consider when it comes to establishing an organization like this in general, with particular focus on an assassin’s guild. Starting a business of any kind is quite an undertaking whether it’s here in the real world or part of your fantasy campaign setting. Creating a business where the product is murder adds quite a few wrinkles depending on the nature of the setting. If you’re a 5E D&D DM or player interested in exploring this sort of scenario in your game you’re in for a treat!
Salutations, nerds! Today we’re going to talk about geas and magical compulsion in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. The way this spell is written and the way people typically tend to use it would have you believe the best purpose is setting someone to watch over an NPC you don’t want the Dungeon Master to attack or putting them under magical compulsion not to hurt you, but it was used very differently in folklore and that’s what I want to discuss tonight.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted answer a GM 911 for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. One of the players in their game keeps trying to over impose their backstory into the campaign without considering the party or the ongoing story. The disruptive player adds things on the fly about their backstory and other players feel this hinders the rest of the party. They’re already followed the best advice — a respectful conversation — but it didn’t work and the Game Master doesn’t want to essentially destroy this other character by ignoring an important part of their makeup. In the video Dave and Ted touch on several suggestions and for my 2 cp the best solution isn’t to work on ways to move around or past this scenario. Instead, this seems like a great opportunity to expand on a bit of valuable player advice and rather than avoid this, lean into it.
Over on the Nerdarchy YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted battle with the idea of an all fighter party for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. We’ve had a lot of fun exploring this popular video series and here on the website I’m sharing my take on the concept of single party composition. An all fighter party in 5E D&D covers combat with aplomb. You might think party composition like this lacks diversity outside a fight though, but you’d be mistaken. Because fighters focus primarily on pure combat this leaves plenty of creative space to round out your fighter with diverse skills and features. In a D&D campaign setting of academia for each particular character class, students at Martial Archetypes receive certified training in combat technique but there’s a wide array of electives to help shape hearts and minds for more than fighting. So let’s get into it.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel we create a lot of video content. There’s thousands of videos celebrating our passion for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons and other tabletop roleplaying games. (But yes, mostly D&D. We love the game!) One of our favorite videos to make are the Adventurers League Character Build Guides. We come up with a character concept and put it together soup to nuts. Along the way we explain why particular choices get made, building a character from 1st-20th level. Mechanical elements certainly factor heavily into decision making but practical reasoning and roleplaying share equal importance. For a little inside baseball it is almost always the latter ideas where a CBG begins. At the moment we’ve got 32 CBGs over at Dungeon Masters Guild, all pay what you want. Nine of them have achieved copper bestseller or better status, and there’s also four other PWYW products over there, which are encounters or adventures you can drop right into your 5E D&D game. Today I’m here to share one of my favorite CBGs, one I’ve been playing in a wonderfully fun game run by Esper the Bard on his YouTube channel.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted get back to basics and discuss the paladin class for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. In the video they look across all of the 5E D&D books with paladin content. There are paladin subclasses in the Player’s Handbook, Sword Coast Adventurers Guide and Xanathar’s Guide to Everything and Dave and Ted share an overview of the character class plus weigh in on their personal gaming experiences. Outside of official sources there are countless Sacred Oaths created by players all over the world. We’ve created one recently for our April early access Patreon rewards. The Oath of Vanity included with Hairable Ideas as a follow up to 2019’s popular Beardomancy will hit the store next month but you can get it now along with all our other supporters at the $2 level plus get immediate access to years worth of previous rewards. Check it out here. Over at Dungeon Master’s Guild there’s currently 681 products tagged as character options with warlock content too. But there is another source of homebrew content I’m looking at today — D&D Beyond, where people have used the homebrew tools there to create 600 Sacred Oaths for 5E D&D paladins. Let’s get into it and take a closer look at some!
Over on the Nerdarchy YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted explore the idea of an all paladin party for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. This video series continues to prove popular and I’m sharing my take on the concept of single party composition here on the website. Playing an all paladin party in 5E D&D makes for one strong party with solid defense, offense, buffs and healing — the total package, right? While Dave and Ted share their insights into 5E D&D party composition in the video I’m more concerned about a different kind of strength from a paladin — the strength of their conviction. When it comes to a campaign setting of academia for each particular character class, let’s get into it and see how students at Sacred Oaths get graded on how well they uphold the tenets of their oath and not how awesome they are in combat.
Salutations, nerds! We’re going to talk about something fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons players absolutely love to flash around, something that doesn’t break your game or have a value in gold points. All it takes is a little creative thought on your part. I’m sure most of you have read or at least seen Game of Thrones so you’re probably aware of the nicknames pretty much everyone in the series has. The Mountain, the Hound, the Imp. Sobriquettes, kennings, titles in 5E D&D — that’s what we’re going to be talking about today.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted borrow some inspiration from the Warhammer Fantasy universe and share ideas about the dwarven slayers of the setting. In the video they consider various fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons options to recreate the iconic dwarf warrior for 5E D&D. I used to play Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay decades ago and definitely recall these berserkers from their appearance right on the cover of the rulebook. While we planned the video and did some research, what really captured my attention is the process to become a dwarf slayer and how they take a name from the ferocious creatures they slay. In my imagination any 5E D&D character might aspire to become such a slayer. Instead of marking out a character path to simulate these slayers I think it might be fun and interesting to come up with some special goals and rewards for adventurers who dedicate the entire fiber of their being to the hardest and most destructive life of battle that they can possibly find.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted unravel esoteric arcane mysteries from Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount and discuss new spells for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons in the latest book. Powerful magic energy called dunamis manipulates fundamental forces of the multiverse to alter time, potential and gravity. Dunamancers study this ancient magic and gain the ability to control those forces through deeper understanding of cosmic mysteries. The collection of new 5E D&D spells in the book represent a handful of known dunamis spells, and they are powerful. A terrific sidebar offers suggestions for introducing dunamis spells into your campaign so if we’re looking for collaborative worldbuilding for Dungeon Masters and players, the rubber meets the road here. Crunchy spell effects notwithstanding, introducing new spells presents a great opportunity for DMs and players to collaborate, explore and expand on a campaign setting together.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted continue their look through Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount with a look at the new fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons subclasses in the latest book. Echo Knight fighter, Chronurgy Magic wizard and Graviturgy Magic wizard join the ranks of official subclasses in the 5E D&D multiverse and the same things interest me about these options as the new races in the book. Shove all the crunchy bits aside, new character options present fantastic opportunities for worldbuilding and whether it starts with a Dungeon Master or the players in the adventuring party, any component of character creation or development becomes a wealth of ways for DMs and players to collaborate, explore and expand on a campaign setting together.
Salutations, nerds! I’ve noticed a massive spike in the number of people roleplaying in my MMO’s lately, which is a good thing generally but probably pandemic related. But I’m sure for every person that’s jumped on the wagon for it, there’s another hesitating. If you play games with a big player base and any sort of roleplaying to be had, you’ve probably been in a situation where you’ve gone into an RP hub and found yourself lingering along the outside of the action looking in. It’s an unfortunate place to be, especially when what you really want is to play. It can be incredibly discouraging. This is a situation I have been in many times myself. Fortunately for you, I’ve tripped and fallen flat on my face many times so you do not have to. I’ve narrowed down seven points to bear in mind when crafting your roleplaying profile to elicit the responses you want and get some of those sweet, sweet interactions. Shall we begin?