Tag Archives: Mike Mearls

My first impression of inspiration proved wrong

In an earlier post, I leveled criticism toward the inspiration mechanic based on Mike Mearls’s preview in “Roleplaying in D&D Next.” I listed two gripes: Awarding inspiration seemed to put the dungeon master in an uncomfortable role. Mearls wrote about … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition | Tagged , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Revisiting three corners of the new D&D rules

In two posts, I answered some common rules questions about fifth-edition Dungeons & Dragons from dungeon masters and players. I added some extra comments on the answers because that’s what I do here. Since posting my answers, more game play … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition, Rules | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

When D&D art put concerned parents ahead of players

In an interview for Mary Sue, Dungeons & Dragons lead designer Mike Mearls spoke about broadening the appeal of the game beyond its traditionally male audience through graphic design and art direction. “Very early on, we decided that we were … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition, Role-playing game history | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Top 5 rules questions from new Dungeons & Dragons fifth-edition players

Just under a year ago, I posted a Q&A based on questions players at Gen Con asked about the Dungeon & Dragons Next rules. With Next now available as the official fifth-edition rules, some of the answers change. This post … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition | Tagged , , , | 24 Comments

Dungeons & Dragons fifth-edition Basic Rules, an annotated page 1

Wizards of the Coast has released the Dungeons & Dragons basic rules as a free download. I have yet to read past the first page, but even that invites comments. The July 3 basic rules are labeled, version 0.1, but … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Saving throw proficiency and ghouls

Even at the end of the Dungeons & Dragons Next public playtest, the designers wrestled with one aspect of Next that remains broken. The ghoul problem. A live-streamed playtest session showed the problem when 4 ghouls faced a party of fifth-level … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

From the brown books to next, D&D tries for elegance

An elegant role-playing game gains maximum play value out of a concise set of simple rules. Elegant rules… apply broadly so fewer rules can cover whatever happens in the game. play quickly with minimal math and little need to reference … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition, Role-playing game design, Role-playing game history | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

3 reasons science and ecology make a bad mix for some monsters

Back in the formative years of Dungeons & Dragons, speculative fiction enjoyed something of a fashion for combining science and fantasy, so the popular Pern and Darkover novels provided scientific explanations for what fantasy-flavored worlds of dragons and magic. Meanwhile, … Continue reading

Posted in Inspiration, Role-playing game history | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Two reasons D&D Next’s inspiration mechanic fails to inspire me (and why the designers don’t mind)

From what we have seem so far, the Dungeons & Dragons Next design sticks close the game’s tradition. This makes the inspiration mechanic the design’s biggest surprise so far. D&D’s top dog, Mike Mearls, revealed the mechanic in “Roleplaying in … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fourth edition, Role-playing game design | Tagged , , , , , | 11 Comments

Top 3 rules questions from Dungeons & Dragons Next dungeon masters

Update: I’ve posted an updated version of this based on the final, fifth-edition rules. I’ve played Dungeons & Dragons Next before, but Gen Con 2013 gave my first chance to run it. At the start of the convention, Jeremy Crawford … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment