Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted cracked open a fresh copy of Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount to go over the new player options for races for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons characters. Dave and Ted talk about the new races and their mechanical attributes, and in that regard the book contains five new options: pallid elf, lotusden halfling, draconblood and ravenite dragonborn and orcs of Exandria. New player options are always a welcome addition to 5E D&D and it’s fun to examine new races to see what classes they mesh with through their traits and attributes. But what really interests me about Character Options — Races in Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount isn’t the crunchy parts at all. Rather, I’m fascinated by the example of worldbuilding through all the existing options we already had and how Matt Mercer takes things we already know and enriches his own campaign setting with them. Worldbuilding doesn’t start or stop with a Dungeon Master, and the most basic component of character creation offers a terrific example of how this aspect of the game provides fertile ground for players and DMs to collaborate and build things together.
Never one to leave a writing series dangling, I promised in The Secret History of Merfolk to follow up with the third and final book in the series by Ari Berk. The Secret History of Hobgoblins presents another tapestry of folklore and kitschy monster stuff...
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted circle back to the basics and discuss the druid class for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. In the video they look at all of the 5E D&D books with druid content. There are subclasses in the Player’s Handbook, Xanathar’s Guide to Everything and Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica and Dave and Ted look over the character class as a whole plus weigh in with their personal gaming experiences. Outside of official sources there are countless Circles created by players all over the world. We’ve created at least one ourselves and there’s more from the D&D design team included in Unearthed Arcana playtest documents as well as terrific third party products containing new options for druid players. Over at Dungeon Master’s Guild there’s currently 625 products tagged as 5E D&D character options with druid 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 291 Circles for druids. Let’s get into it and look at the best ones from three different perspectives.
Salutations, nerds. We have arrived at our wizardly destination for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. You know, the ones in the pointy hats who constantly gather up in big towers and work together. As I was mentioning last week wizards group up in order to...
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted dicuss the potential for indulging fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons players and the all too familiar scenario of creature collection. Anything from a cute and cuddly critter to a fearsome monstrosity appeals to lots of players interest in taming beasts, raising their own monsters or otherwise gathering pets. They start by wondering what a 5E D&D Conjuration Wizard Fight Club might entail and proceed to break all the rules by talking about it — in front of a camera no less! When it comes to organized conjured creature combat Nerdarchy advocates ethical and nonviolent treatment of any and all summoned, conjured, created, fabricated, imagined or regular real world creatures.
Organizations in your fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign world provide so many benefits for a Dungeon Master. Factions, guilds, cabals and any other collection of people sharing a common goal or interest can be quest givers, sources of information and structures for contextualizing any 5E D&D campaign setting. Even in the bleak land of Barovia, an organization like the Keepers of the Feather tells you something about the setting. In The Mandalorian, the titular character belonged to an organized tribe of warriors and the bounty hunter guild. In the first part of this series we went through the process of creating a guild for 5E D&D starting with the Dungeon Master’s Guide. The Adventurers of Adventure is an adventuring guild characters can join and gain renown with, earning benefits along the way. With Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica in hand the AoA can expand options for its members with Guild Spells and Contacts. The fly by night adventuring guild’s operating budget is pretty slim, so the selections might not top industry standards but hey — it’s free spells! So let’s get into it and proceed to step 2 of creating a guild.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted discuss Unearthed Arcana 2020, Subclasses Part 3. The latest playtest document for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons includes new subclasses for the artificer, druid and ranger. During our look through of this Unearthed Arcana it was the Circle of the Stars druid’s Starry Form feature that sparked a thought leading to uncovering the upcoming Mythic Odysseys of Theros book several days before the title leaked and was then officially announced. I wonder what the next leak will reveal? Until then, while Dave and Ted go over the Armorer, Circle of the Stars and Fey Wanderer in the video, over here we’ll continue looking at these 5E D&D playtest subclasses with curiosity about what sort of characters they might represent. So let’s get into it.
Salutations, nerds! Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons sorcerers are on the menu today and as opposed to wizards, who are constantly gathering up in big towers and working together, sorcerers don’t tend to really travel in groups all too often. Regardless, we’re going to push forward and see what we can discover together about sorcerers in groups. Wizards will get their own turn, but where they have this tendency to group together in order to share their studies and research, in 5E D&D sorcerers just get their power from a variety of sources and don’t really have to share anything in order to use their magic. But there are plenty of other reasons for sorcerers to group up, including self preservation.
Salutations nerds! Today we’re going to be talking about rangers in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Now I don’t know about you but I’ve heard them taking a lot of grief lately for being one of the objectively less powerful classes in 5E D&D, but that wasn’t always the case. I’ve also heard rangers attacked for having less of a class identity as some of the others out there, but I don’t feel like that’s true at all. So let’s delve into the woods. Let’s do some tracking and nature stuff. Let’s walk a couple of miles without it being difficult terrain and see how far out this ranger stuff goes.
Group identity is important to tabletop roleplaying games. Heck, it’s important to any group of people. We as gamers see ourselves as a community. Whether they admit it or not, people need community. “Man is by nature a social animal; an individual who is unsocial naturally and not accidentally is either beneath our notice or more than human,” Aristotle wrote in Politics. The lone wolf is actually quite a rare phenomenon. Now, if you want I can go deep into scholarly literature about collective identity and start quoting research, but I won’t. After all, while I may be working toward my PhD, such academic stuff isn’t everyone’s cup of meat.
As promised in The Secret History of Giants I’m following up with The Secret History of Mermaids and Creatures of the Deep, by Ari Berk. Along with The Secret History of Hobgoblins this series’ compelling cover art and design caught my attention and as a folklore and kitschy monster stuff fan I ordered them. Along with being enjoyable reads these interactive children’s mythology books are filled with fun ideas for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Let’s dive into The Secret History of Mermaids and Creatures of the Deep bring some fresh ideas to the surface for our 5E D&D games.
Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted get back to basics and discuss the warlock class for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. In the video they look across all of the 5E D&D books with warlock content. There are warlock 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 Otherworldly Patrons created by players all over the world. We’ve created quite a few ourselves in our products, newsletter and posts here on the website. There’s more from the D&D design team included in various Unearthed Arcana playtest documents, and lots of terrific third party products contain new options for warlock players. Over at Dungeon Master’s Guild there’s currently 840 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 755 Otherworldly Patrons for 5E D&D warlocks. Let’s get into it and take a closer look at some!
I can’t tell you how many times our discussions about fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons around Nerdarchy HQ include talk of organizations. Character build guides, adventure hooks, character stories, Dungeon Master or player tips and a whole lot more often raise a point about creating some kind of group. There’s a multitude of benefits to coming up with this kind of content, not the least of which is providing context in a campaign setting. Organized groups of people tell players something about the world their characters exist within. Whatever cause or goal brings an organization together illustrates something important, at least to the members. Organizations represent a useful resource in a DM’s toolbox whether it’s one a player came up with as part of their character’s backstory or one already established in a campaign setting. In my 5E D&D games there’s an organization all players become familiar with from the start. New characters begin their careers as new recruits of Adventurers of Adventure, and they’re always looking for more.
Welcome once again to the weekly Nerdarchy Newsletter. This week’s topic is plants, which we discussed in our exclusive Patreon live chat. We hangout every Monday evening at 8 p.m. EST with Patreon supporters and talk about D&D, RPGs, gaming, life and whatever nerdy stuff comes up. You can get the Nerdarchy Newsletter delivered to your inbox each week, along with updates and info on how to game with Nerdarchy, by signing up here. The Pledge Manager for Out of the Box: Encounters for Fifth Edition remains open, but not for much longer. Production on the book has been in full swing, with almost all the incredible art from Kim Van Deun and maps from Darryl T. Jones received. We’re giving everything an additional level of quality control to put our best foot forward when we deliver these products. Speaking of plants, in Menagerie a very powerful plant creates an unusual scenario within a deep forest glade that isn’t even close to what it looks like! Check out the Pledge Manager here.
Salutations, nerds! Today we’re going to be talking about monks in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons, and I have been waiting an eon for this because it comes with music. Okay, so those monks read more like clerics than actual monks in terms of the 5E D&D class, but humor me this once. It’s been stuck in my head for what feels like an age and if I have to suffer, so do all of you. Of course 5E D&D monks tend to feel more like the martial artists you would find in a Xiaolin temple than the shaven headed eastern kind who spent most of their time reading and writing while a lot of the rest of the populace didn’t know how to do that. We’re talking unarmed strikes, flurry of blows, catching arrows in midflight…monks are pretty awesome. In fact, I think that’s the adjective I’m going to use for them.