D&D Next again

Just a fast comment. The tagline should be “Not your kids video game anymore”. That’s all. Back to reading.


D&D Next – Pure praise!

I am only one of many but that concerns me not. I received my invite to participate in the next iteration of my lifelong passion’s playtest today and so far I am beside myself in joy. If the new Dungeons & Dragons stays ANYTHING like what I had the joy of reading today, all my prayers have been answered. Gone is the stuff I had to stomach in 3.x and Pathfinder and 4e. Back are the simply joyous days of old yet with the refinement of the newer rulesets. Because of the NDA I can’t give details but I am allowed to talk about it so here I go:

Combat. Everything I always wanted and reminds me of 2e AD&D but without the Thac0 which many complained about (not me. I passed fourth grade math). Now if only they bring back weapon speeds (I can dream)

Healing: The section titled Healing. This simple paragraph settled it for me. I am hooked and will support them going forward.

Damage & Dying. All I can say is “Precisely!”

Resting: Not the way I would have done it but I like it, but more importantly it answers many of my players complaints since, well…. forever ago. Yet isn’t that 4E version atrocity. Yay!

Conditions: Simple and playable. I am torn on this subject. I hated complicated conditions. I have always preferred DM handwaving of them or direct/circumstantial handling given the situation. This mimics this without having to buy a deck of cards to support gameplay (sorry Paizo) ALTHOUGH… I like my deck of Conditions. I will miss it a little. But only a little given the new ones 🙂

Weapons and their Attacks. A houserule I have been using since the early 90s made real. I cannot contain my joy if they keep it this way.

and finally Magic:

I am not sure yet. I will have to see it in play.

Synopsis: If what I opened as a pdf today were a hardbound book sitting on a shelf, they would have secured my purchase. I cannot wait to see what they do for character creation rules, how monsters will evolve from what they drafted. The funniest part to me overall is it matches what I have already done as a customized ruleset for my own game at about a 40% rate. This just saves me a few thousands words of typing as I will test what is written and report back when they ask.

I can now truly dust off all (and I mean ALL) my pre 3.x Forgotten Realms books and not have to rewrite everything with rules to make it work with the system.


Short Hiatus

We are skipping our game session this week, and probably next week so real life can strut around a bit and not feel ignored, and as such there are no map or game updates. The last session we played found the players becoming more deeply entrenched in the title of “Hero” as they saved a little boy from a horrible death and they went scouting the wilderness with a newfound companion and ran into not only more goblins, but two chest thumping Ogres. This encounter was designed to really push the limits of the party and it really succeeded. It was a very fun, very challenging encounter. They thought for sure they would perish.

Moving forward the game lurches more into the wilds of my imagination and less with the borrowing of other ideas from Rise of the Runelords. I plan to visit many environs over the next few months to get a feel for what my players like best. They are too low to planehop or risk truly volatile environments like lava tunnels, but I will mix it up somehow. Maybe they are due for a little Huck & Tom action by raft. Time will tell.

Also of note, well for me anyways, is the fact I can’t seem to leave my Dawnpoint map alone. With the discovery of some open licence buildings from rpgmapmaker on the cartographersguild.com website, I will be giving my map a facelift in the upcoming weeks to be more along the lines of what I envisioned instead of what I settled for due to software and knowledge limitations.

Oh ya, one minor detail. DIABLO III is live… and Ravenbow the Barbarian is pounding demons like a Volgen!!! Yay!

Have a great week,

Dawnpoint Map Update

As the ideas floating around in my whirlwind of a brain become more concrete, aspects of my source material are becoming finalized. Here is where I stand with my Dawnpoint redo. I was up very late yet again last night working on this map and I have hours to go. The roads/path areas still need work, and I really haven’t gotten to the foliage yet as I am still trying to master Jonathan Roberts’ tricks and tips. His blog is http://fantasticmaps.wordpress.com/ and the name says it all. He is one of the Cartographers I idolize and I have spent insanely frustrating hours trying to emulate him.

I really need to learn PhotoShop. Everything on this blog relating to maps is done with Paint.net or Dundjinni.

Irregardless (just for you Morga)… I present Dawnpoint.. sans foliage and with the town council still in hot debate over the color of their cobblestones and paths.



Play resumes Monday for our new BB customized campaign. It was relayed to me they are “having fun” with everything I had done so far encounter and story-wise, but they also expressed a disinterest in dungeons. This saddens me as I am a dungeon DM by choice. My next three sessions were a dungeon crawl below a ruined old watch tower in a swamp. Now I have just a few days to come up with an alternative.

Alas. We’ll see what I come up with.


Interrupted! The festival to officially consecrate and dedicate the new Dawnpoint Cathedral was interrupted by a large scale, coordinated attack by Goblins!

As citizens ran seeking safety, a few courageous members of the watch, the town sheriff , and an intrepid band of adventurers; who just happened to be in Dawnpoint awaiting departure for the final leg of their trek to escort none other than Aldern Foxclove to his stately manor far to the northeast, helped to save the town from serious destruction. Sadly four citizens did die as a result of the attack, but the body count of Goblins was over 120, including Chief VileTusk and his Whip wielding mate. In addition there were a number of horses killed and two stables and four homes in town are a complete loss. Tagris Vharti, one of the stables owners is quoted as saying “By the gods my next stable will be stone and steel!”

The visiting heroes have been identified as the mighty Volgen Warrioress Morga, a half-elf who gave his name only as “Thor to you“, and the beautiful follower of Erastil and purported gifted of Selune; Ehla.

Dawnpoint citizens owe much to these champions and news of a feast in their honor has begun to spread. Zhaleen L’Kos, owner of the popular Ash & Oak Inn will surely be involved as she has taken a liking to the newest adventurers to grace her inn.

Alders Machen – The Dawnpoint Pilot