Salutations, nerds! And good news for fans of idle games like Cookie Clicker and AdventureQuest Dragons. Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms is a Dungeons and Dragons game in early access on Steam right now, free to play, and I have to say it’s exactly what I needed.
It’s an idle game, and if you’re not already aware of what that means I’ll give you the run down: you don’t have to do a whole lot for the game to do what it does. You click a couple of times and get it started and then watch the numbers go up and get ridiculously high as the story progresses and in this case, as your heroes do more damage. Continue reading Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms is Free to Play Dungeons and Dragons in Early Access on Steam and it’s Awesome
Like Nerdarchists Dave and Ted and Nate the Nerdarch mention in the video above, psionics has been a part of Dungeons & Dragons since 1st edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. In the interest of utmost accuracy, the supernatural power of psionics were first introduced to D&D in Eldritch Wizardry, a 1976 supplemental rulebook for the original edition. Also of note are the other now-iconic facets of D&D included in that 60-page digest: the druid class, demons and demon lords like Orcus and Demogorgon, mind flayers, and artifacts like the Rod of Seven Parts and Axe of the Dwarvish Lords.
With those bits of long forgotten secrets behind us now, let’s turn our clairsentience to the future. Based on hints and bits of information shared through social media and in interviews, a fifth edition D&D iteration of Dark Sun is almost certain.
We’ve already got the mystic class available through the Dungeon Master’s Guild, giving D&D players the opportunity to utilize the awesome power of psionics in D&D 5E.
Now we only await the introduction of the sun-scorched setting of Dark Sun. Continue reading Dark Sun Ever Mindful of D&D Psionics
The gift that keeps on giving! Nord Games’ Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde inspired not one but TWO videos on the Nerdarchy YouTube channel, plus a review here on the website. And now its generating another post.
In the video above, Nerdarchists Dave and Ted and Nate the Nerdarch talk about their favorite monstrous humanoids in fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. They each choose two, discuss the appeal and explore a bit why and how they’ve used them in games, either as player characters or as a Dungeon Master.
It’s worth noting that there is no official “monstrous humanoid” designation in D&D. There’s just straight-up humanoids. Many of them are most certainly monstrous though! Also, despite appearing in the Revenge of the Horde book, ogres and trolls are not humanoids – they’re giants. But in defense of the book, there is no claim made limiting the creature types to humanoids, simply “classic monstrous races.”
And minotaurs are monstrosities.
According to the current D&D Beyond monster database containing material up to and including Tales from the Yawning Portal, there are 231 humanoids in official D&D content. Many are individuals from various adventures and campaigns like Pharblex Spattergoo, an NPC from Hoard of the Dragon Queen. Aside from official sources, there’s plenty of third-party material like the Ultimate Bestiary. Continue reading Top Ten D&D Monstrous Humanoids
Out of the Box introduction
If I hear any refrain commonly online and with other Dungeon Masters, it’s “but my players are X level. How do I challenge them?”
Debates swirl around the various forums and subreddits in the Dungeons & Dragons community; they’re chief among the interactions we have with each other. These debates often vary in their complexity, but a lot of the disagreement with how to even proceed with the debate itself is based on a misunderstanding some have about what the debate is even about. Is this a ‘flavour’ issue or a ‘rules’ issue? What’s the difference? Does it matter?
In this article, we’ll be delving into what ‘mechanics’ are, what ‘fluff’ is and how changing either can change your D&D game, for good or ill. The hope is that after reading, you should feel a bit more confident in your ability to discuss things, possibly even change things, in your games. Continue reading D&D Fluff and Mechanics Make the RPG Go ‘Round
Unique results with Chartopia lists, tables and charts
Hello friends! We’ve already brought up the Rollable List feature on Chartopia – a semicolon-separated list of items/words/phrases within square brackets. It adds diversity to results without needing to call upon multiple tables. But there’s more to it than a single dice roll. Let’s look into what else it can do for you. In the sewer combat encounter table discussed in the second Chartopia article, one possible encounter for players was adventurers. To mix it up we added some variance in how…
[they mistakenly believe you’re hostile/cultists/etc; they attack because they think you’re after the same treasure they’re searching for; they’ve been hired by an enemy to kill the party]
So what else can you do with a rollable list? Continue reading Chartopia, Part 4: Rollable lists
NPCs for any D&D occassion
Many a Dungeon Master has encountered a creative wall when it comes to creating interesting, believable nonplayer characters for Dungeons & Dragons. Some only need a brief description and a name, but others can become key points in a campaign setting. They give an identity and culture to the world of the game.
It can be a challenge, though – it’s hard to predict which NPCs your party will take interest in and seek out in future sessions, and sometimes you have to come up with an NPC on the fly when the session takes an unexpected turn. Enter Limitless Adventures’ Non Player Characters vol. 1. The book contains 100 pre-written NPCs with descriptions, stats and loot that can be put into any campaign.
The book organises NPCs into eight categories: ally, charge, contact, foe, hireling, merchant, sage, and quest giver. Some NPCs fit into multiple categories, so the book’s chapters are more broadly sorted into allies, contacts, foes, merchants, and arch enemies. Each character includes a name, a brief description, stats, treasure, and quest hooks that can be found for each under the Further Adventure subtitle. Continue reading D&D Product Review: Limitless NPCs Vol.1
Hey nerds! This weekend I had the unique experience of getting to play in a party being helmed by a player I taught the game to in the first place. It’s his first big fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign, and I am filled with the twin senses of overwhelming pride and absolute horror.
If you’ve been in this situation there’s a good chance you know what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, I’m going to do my best to illustrate this for you.
D&D Dungeon Master do’s and don’ts
First, let me start by saying he did a lot right. He touched base with every single player before the game started, asked us for backstories, and prepared how he was going to get us into the game in advance. He was animated, on his feet, speaking in the voice of his NPCs. He had clever, engaging names for his locations and a well-constructed backstory for his setting and what was going on in it.
On the other hand, he also completely railroaded the party. He dragged us into another plane of existence and made it clear this game was going to be about hopping into different dimensions, that we didn’t get to keep the money we earned there, that there wouldn’t be any recurring NPCs but the obnoxious one who pulled us into this hub world to begin with and said “yeah you’re going to do this or you just die.”
Inexperienced vs. seasoned D&D players
I noticed something, though, while we were playing. There were three new players at the table, and four experienced ones. The experienced players were not into it at all. One of them even left early, but the new players absolutely loved it.
The thing is, I can remember being that boosted Dungeon Master, once upon a time. I remember having a lot of fun doing some very stupid things back in high school, and I feel like a player who had been at it for a while wouldn’t have liked that nearly as much. The thing is, he’s going to learn. He is going to get better. But only if he has players who are willing to stick with him and see it happen.
We talked about it after the game, he and I. We ran a postmortem about what he could have done better, and also what I thought he did really well (because let’s face it, you learn as much hearing what you’re doing right as you do hearing what you’ve done wrong) and he took it much better than I anticipated he would.
New =/= bad
What I’m getting at here is he isn’t a bad DM, he’s a new DM, and I cannot wait to see the kind of DM he becomes when he has a little bit more experience under his belt. I’m really glad he has some newer players who are willing to take that journey with him and I think, even though there were some real holes in what happened that night, I’ll probably keep attending his sessions.
When I was new and taking my first turn behind the DM screen for more than one or two players, I had this guy George who played with us. I was terrible starting out. I didn’t know all the rules for combat, sometimes there were moments that I’d get frustrated and deus ex them instead of rolling with the punches or just being honest that I’d slipped up, but he stuck with me. This guy had been playing for years, and I know he didn’t miss some of the obvious mistakes I was making but he was always there with a little smile and a bit of advice after the sessions ended. It usually got marked up to “do a little more research next time,” but that comes with experience too.
I’ve seen the conversation come up a lot that this is a game that requires a DM to play but we don’t have a good mentor system for making new DMs. Learning the game is difficult, especially when you don’t have a lot of people to play with in the first place. That is why I feel this is an important experience to share, because in this one’s humble opinion, this is how we do it.
The right stuff
What a good DM needs to get started is a love of the game and a lot of enthusiasm. The guy I’m talking about has that in spades. You can tell he is really into the game he’s running. All that other stuff, the articulation, the crunchy bits, will come to him in time, but only if he has players who stick with him until he gets to that.
So that’s my suggestion for the week. If you have a D&D Dungeon Master who’s just starting out and is frustrating you or other players with details or lack thereof, try to remember we all have to start somewhere. The best DM’s were newbs once too, and the best tool we have to teach them to get better is just to support and play with them in the first place.
Products from Amazon.com
In the video above from the Nerdarchy YouTube channel, Nerdarchists Dave and Ted build and add flavor to a fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons character. The character specifics – race, class and background – were chosen by the Nerdarchy Twitter community through a series of blind polls.
The #NerdyProject was a series of 11 polls. Each one narrowed down the field of possibilities for each of the three D&D character aspects. Creating and administering the polls was a lot of fun. Based on the video content and comments the fun continued for the Nerdarchists and community, too.
Now that the polls and D&D character build are complete, I thought it might be interesting to peel the curtain aside and give people a peek at how each poll was put together. The polls were blind – answer choices were purposely vague – and the reasoning behind answer options might be of interest to those who participated or anyone who watched the video. Continue reading How a Poll Created a D&D Character – #NerdyProject
Effect of age in D&D
Age is a usually inescapable villain that hunts down any and all who walk this mortal coil.
That being said, there are ways to escape it. What we will deal with here are reactions left to those who don’t have the ability to visit the fountain of youth, become a lich or vampire, and have no chance to ascend to godhood.
The touch of age is something a lot of gamers forget but could do well to keep in mind. After all, the effect of it could very well enhance your gaming experience.
In previous editions of Dungeons & Dragons the effect of age was pretty easy to document.
In fact, your character could even use it as a form of min/maxing as your physical stats drop while your mental stats raise.
This could be a godsend to casters, especially the wizard and sorcerer who would want to push the DC of their spells as far as possible.
Conversely, a more physical type would run from the cold hand of time, as those physical abilities are their very bread and butter. Continue reading Effects Of Age On A D&D Character Can Enhance the Experience
Due to the recent announcement D&D Beyond will fully launch on August 15, my mind has turned back to Xanathar’s Guide to Everything (or perhaps forward, since as of the writing of this article it’s still four months away from its release).
I’m really excited to see the new character options that are going to be available. Obviously we have a strong idea of some of it thanks in so small part to Wizards of the Coast’s Unearthed Arcana. There are some good ones out there. And there are some failures, too.
But no matter how good or bad, I’m not a fan of letting my D&D players use the class archetypes. The reason is very simple. Unearthed Arcana is subject to change because it’s test material.
The designers knew going into it what they had needed work. Partially because a lot of them did some really cool things, and really cool can either be largely ineffective or overpowered. Continue reading Using D&D 5E Unearthed Arcana Class Options for Worldbuilding
Why don’t you run each encounter like a combat encounter? Combat is a Dungeons & Dragons staple. Most of the rules are based around it. The formula for combat has evolved through five editions and countless erratum. Each change made it faster and more efficient. Why then, aren’t you applying this finely tuned formula to your explorations and roleplay encounters? Continue reading Run Each D&D Encounter Like it is Combat
Products from Amazon.com
Price: $33.86Was: $49.95