Friday, July 31, 2009

Official Previews for 7/31/2009

Today's preview again is just for Adventurer's Vault 2, today covering Story Items for Implements (rods)

Two rods are covered, the Rod of Stolen Starlight and the Rod of Silver Rain.

Also there is official confirmation that there will be equipment for Artificers and Invokers (and by extension the rest of the PHB2 classes) in the preamble for the article.

Edit:
I just realized there was a bit of information from a preview I missed today, in the Mini's preview. Normally I wasn't covering them because we knew all about the minis in the set, but today also had "You'll be able to find monster statistics for all the draconians in the upcoming Draconomicon: Metallic Dragons book."
Does that point to, or away from the next setting being Dragonlance? You decide, or wait until the announcement at GEN-CON.


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Monster Builder Beta live for DDI subscribers

Monster Builder is go!
Check out the article here and download it here (subscription required)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Elder Evils 3.5 to 4th Edition conversion

Wizards has posted the second of their 3.5 book updates, this time for Elder Evils.

Check it out at http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/4tut/elderevils

This time sees a newer format, with all the stat blocks in a pdf. I like it.

Githzerai and DDI update

Trevor Kidd posted about the August 2009 update, it included this:

Now on to the debut content! In addition to a revised and improved version of the githzerai racial entry originally published in the Monster Manual, next month’s debut article includes several racial feats, from Adamantine Mind to Zuwoth’s Enlightened Step. It also features a brand-new githzerai paragon path: the infamous githzerai vengeance warrior known as the rrathmal!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Official Previews for 7/27/2009

Only one preview again today, this time weapons with stories from the adventurer's vault 2.
Take a look there at the Alfsair Spear, a spear that can be used as a totem, and the Shrieking Bow, a bow that does thundering damage among other things.


Today's Design & development article on the Eberron Campaign Guide (subscriber only) mentioned that while there is no Statblocks for Quori (Nightmare monsters of Eberron) in the Guide, "They'll almost certainly appear in D&D Insider before too long."

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Revenge of the Giants running late, Dragon Annual coming early.

Scott Rouse posted on Enworld today that adventure Revenge of the Giants is running behind schedule and is being pushed back to September, and the Dragon Magazine Annual book will be taking its place and will be released on August 18th. There will be some pre-release copies for sale for those lucky enough to get to Gen-Con.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Official Previews for 7/24/2009

Only one 'real' preview today, again on next month's Adventurer's Vault 2. Today the preview covered some more "story items" magical items that have a story and DM hooks included with them, today the items covered were, holy chainmail, and a Shining Silver shield.

Though no really a preview, Shelly Mazzanoble got to play with the upcoming DDI adventure tool, the Monster Builder. In the process we get some ideas about the interface and abilities of the tool.
From the sound of the article, the stats generation works pretty similarly to the flash based monster builder that currently exists. The improvements upon this seem mostly in the adding of the powers and, here is an interesting excerpt.

"I had the option of choosing from an a la carte menu, customizing anything from the list, or winging it on my own. It was really as simple as dragging from the power list to my personal monster menu. Knowing MtwG was going to be an illusionist, we searched the database using the key word "illusion."

"Anything you think might work, you can add to your holding pen and save it for use later," Peter explained. The holding pen is a feature of the D&D Monster Builder that is exactly what the name implies."



Wednesday, July 22, 2009

WotC Spring 2010 Catalogue

The folks at DDMspoilers have posted about the new WotC spring catalogue.
This covers January, February, March and April

January:
Underdark (A Sourcebook on the underdark)
Player's Handbook Races: Dragonborn (A softcover with a $10 price point thats about dragonborn)

February:
Martial Power 2 (Another Sourcebook expanding the options for Fighters, Rangers, Rogues and Warlords.)
Reavers of Harkenwold (New Heroic tier adventure, called HS1, covers levels 1-3)
Divine Power Cards (Power Cards for Divine Power prayers, 4 sets 1 for each divine class)
Dungeons and Dragons Minis: PHB Heroes: Series 3 (Miniatures for Player characters, 6 Sets of 3 miniatures, 2 Arcane sets, 2 Primal sets, 1 Divine set & 1 Martial set)

March:
Player's Handbook 3
Dungeon Tiles: Howling Halls

April:
Hammerfast (A Fully detailed dwarven town/outpost, with a $12 price point)
The Plane Above: Secrets of the Astral Sea (A sourcebook like The Plane Below, seems to have spelljammer ships on cover)
Dungeons and Dragons Minis: Monster Manual: Streets of Shadow (Monster Manual Minis have 5 minatures per booster box, one being visible. All Minis are monsters.)


Monday, July 20, 2009

Official Previews for 7/20/2009

define: immurement- captivity: the state of being imprisoned.

In today's Adventurer's Vault 2 preview we have the re-presentation of some items that were playtested months ago in Dragon Magazine.
When we last saw them, they were implements - orbs. Now they're a single use consumable item, and this time the maps aren't hand drawn - now they are dungeon tile quality images (and I wouldn't be too suprised if they don't come out in a future tile set)
Go check out the two that they are showing: Immurement of the Dragon Boneyard, and
Immurement of Baleful Gossamer


Saturday, July 18, 2009

More Eberron Campaign Guide Info

A few copies of the ECG have gotten out there a little early, and some information has been spreading around.

seTiny gave us a list of the mounts in the ECG:
Carver (Dinosaur)
Fastieth (Dinosaur)
Clawfoot (Dinosaur)
Glidewing (Dinosaur)
Dragonhawk
Magebred Destrier
Valenar Riding Horse

seTiny also came through with a description of the effects of the mournland:
"When bloodied the Mournland affects [sic] your healing surge value. There is also a disease that you can get that first affects [sic] your healing surge value and if you fail your saves it begins affecting [sic] your ability to gain and use healing surges."


Wizardman compiled a little information on the new planar structure for Eberron:
"Thelanis, Dolurrh, and Dal Quor are part of the "Dragon Between," of which the world of Eberron is the centre. Khyber is the Elemental Chaos, which I suppose means that you have the surface of Eberron atop the Underdark atop Khyber atop the Abyss. Yes, the Abyss is a part of Eberron now. The "Dragon Below" also contains Fernia, Risia, and Kythri. Finally, the Astral Sea is beyond the Ring of Siberys, and is also called the Sea of Siberys. The remaining planes are part of the "Dragon Above": Baator, Daanvi, Irian, Lamannia, Mabar, Shavarath, Syrania, and Xoriat. Yes, you read that correctly: Baator is one of the planes. Also, the planes are ruled by representatives of the gods, except for Baator, which is ruled by Asmodeus, who claims to be a god."

Keith Baker soon piped in with a little bit of clairification and insight on these changes, which are all interesting reads.

Friday, July 17, 2009

New Terrain from DMG2 mentioned.

Today's Familiars of Eberron article in the DDI (subscription required) talks about binding fantastic terrain to your familiar, in the context of Dragonshards. Here is what it says about the matter:

Shardbound Familiars
Dragonshards are inextricably bound up with the world of Eberron, but the concept of infusing a familiar with the power of a magical substance or crystal
can work in any game.
One possibility is to bind a small quantity of fantastic terrain to a familiar. You can reproduce the effect of the Shardbound Familiar (Eberron) feat by infusing your familiar with a bit of phase mist (Dungeon Master’s Guide 2®, page 61). Energy rystals
(Manual of the Planes™, page 22) can simulate the effect of a Siberys shard or Khyber shard.


Not a ton of info, but we can glean two bits of information from it, that the Dungeon Master's Guide 2 will have New fantastic terrain examples in it, and one of them will be called Phase mist.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Eberron Adventure picture...

Emil Rodriquez from WotC PR just posted a picture to his twitter from a new Eberron Adventure (Either from the Eberron Campaign Guide or from the adventure Seekers of the Ashen Crown, which was not specified) Which he was about to play.

The picture includes a stat block for a slightly renamed Melora (Now Mallora) the Emerald Claw Necromancer from 3.5 adventure Shadows of the Last War.

Edit: Based on this new picture It is the adventure from the Eberron Campaign Setting.

Class Acts: Ranger DDI article will be updated before compilation

Andy Collins, the RPG Development & Editing Manager made this post to the WotC boards yesterday. In it he said "The Ranger Class Acts article that we published was of unacceptable quality.", referring to the many editing errors in the Ranged weapon ranger powers featured in the article. The problem with them include many immediate interupt powers without triggers, one that triggers on your own turn 90+% of the time (which by the rules it can't do) and more.
He goes on to say "We're revising the article now; when it's re-posted later this week I'm confident that you'll find it adheres to the standards we strive for with everything we publish (both in book and digital form)."

Check out the original article (subscription required)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Eberron Campaign Guide Spoilers from reviews

Ameron from Dungeon's Master.com got an early review copy from WotC, and he's reviewed the book.

He's got a lot of useful information, including roles and levels of some of the NPCs, so check it out.

Divine Power spoilers

Someone has the book already and is posting about it on RPG.net, check it out.

There is a ton of information to digest in the Thread, and I've gathered what I feel is the most telling about the book. I'm not covering many specific powers other than the At-wills. I'd like to thank Ishi and Juriel, who both have been answering questions in the thread.

Avengers
New At-wills - Bond of Censure ,Ranged, pull the monster to you, takes damage if ends next to you; Leading Strike Melee Weapon, damage and Ally gains damage bonus to next hit on the target.
New Feature - Censure of Unity - Adjacent allies give you +1 to damage against oath target, scales by tier.
There is a feat that allows an Avenger to Mark the enemy with Oath of Emnity

Clerics
New At-wills: Recovery Strike, Str melee weapon; Astral Seal, Ranged Wis
New Channel Divinity feature, That heals an Ally, but leaves you weakened.
Feat: Pacifist Healer, add to healing, but get stunned when attacking enemies.
Paragon path (Seldarine Dedicate) for Elves/Eladrin that lets you use Bows as implements

Invokers
New At-wills: Hand of Radiance, Ranged vs multiple targets, low damage; Mantle of the Infidel, Ranged, Makes Marks better; Visions of Blood, Blast, -1 to all defenses
The new features have been already previewed.

Paladins
New At-wills: Virtuous Strike, Cha Melee; Ardent Strike, Cha or Str Melee
New Feature - Ardent Vow, Add extra damage and attack bonus until end of encounter. Replaces Lay on Hands.
Feat that lets you add Str mod to Divine CHallenge damage
There is a new thing called Divine Saction, which is kinda like a new condition similar to 'marked' and functions like a short-term Divine Challenge with a set duration like 'until the end of your next turn', it deals damage if an enemy does not attack you. Powers place the condition on a creature, so it is a feature that you don't need to lose anything to get. It doesn't seem to be an actual condition, but an extra for paladins with the feature.
They 3 Str attack prayer options at level 9 (and 2 more Cha ones) so there is no missing attack power level for Straladins.

Paragon Paths
Avenger: Ardent Champion, Dervish of Dawn, Dread Imperator, Favored Soul, Relentless Slayer, Serene Initiate, Watchful Shepherd, & Weapon of Fortune
Cleric: Anointed Champion, Astral Savant, Battle Chaplain, Compassionate Healer, Holy Emissary, Messenger of Peace, Miracle Worker, Seldarine Dedicate, Stone Keeper, Truthseeker, & Hammer of Moradin (Paladin/Cleric)
Invoker: Adept of Whispers, Crimson Arbiter, Devoted Orator (Use diplomacy with Int!), Divine Hand, Divine Philosopher, Keeper of the Nine, Speaker of the Word, Stonecaller, Theurge of the Compact, & Vessel of Ichor
Paladin: Champion of Corellon, Demonslayer, Dragonslayer, Faithful Shield, Gray Guard, Hammer of Moradin (Paladin/Cleric), Holy Conqueror, Knight of the Chalice, Questing Knight, Scion of Sacrifice, & Slayer of the Dead.

Epic Destinies
There are Chosen Epic Destinies for POL dieties, The rest of the Epic Destinies are: Avatar of Death, Avatar of Freedom, Avatar of Hope, Avatar of Justice, Avatar of Life, Avatar of Storm, Avatar of War, Exalted Angel, & Saint.

Feats
There are Racial feats for all races (including Eberron and PHB2 races)
There are a lot of Domains: Skill, Arcana, Tyranny, Darkness, Undeath, Torment, Madness, Destruction, Strife, Poison, Trickery, Love, Moon, Change, Luck, Hope, Justice, Protection, Wilderness, Civilization, Creation, Fate, Knowledge, Storm, Strength, War, Life, Sea, Earth, Sun, Death, & Winter - These are only assigned to Points Of Light dieties, not Forgotten Realms or Eberron ones.


Compiled Monster Builder Info from last few days.

Lots of tidbits I found on the WotC forums today so time to share!

First up Trevor from Wizard's community team posted then clairified that there would be no DDI price increase related with the monster builder. He did want to clarify that it was possible it could go up as more portions of the tool release, but no discussions to that effect have been made as of yet.

Next Mudbunny, a community liaison got wind that there would be no demo for non-subscribers, at least not at first

Scott Rouse from D&D brand management then popped in to yoink an idea a poster had about have a minis tracker and images built into the monster builder, or somewhere in the adventure tools. There is no confirmation of this idea being implemented immediately.

Then Mike Donais, from the digital games team came in to talk about the output of the monster builder - it will be able to copy/paste the monsters in Formatted text, or as an image. These can be added to word or whatever tool you're using to build your adventure.

Khyber's harvest and Exemplars of Evil Conversion Posted

Today sees the release of the Digital version of Khyber's Harvest, a Free RPG day Eberron adventure. Its a great adventure, I reviewed it here.

Today also marks the first promised 3.5 book conversion. Exemplars of Evil was the first uploaded, and has the monsters/adversaries from chapters 2 to 9 in the book converted to 4E stats. Great monsters even if you don't necessarily have the 3.5 book

Official Previews for 7/15/2009

Only one preview today, that is an excerpt from Eberron Adventure, Seekers of the Ashen Crown that is set to release alongside the Eberron Campaign Guide on July 21st 2009. The adventure is supposed to be a continuation of the story started in the adventure in the EPG.

There are 4 excerpts in the preview-
1 shows the artifact itself: The Ashen Crown, and a ritual for piecing the riven artifact back together.
The second expands upon the city of Greywall in the nation of monsters- Droaam. I noticed a reference to a character named "Demise" who fans of the 3.5 Eberron may remember.
The third is a very cool encounter with a number of kruthiks and a solo trap, which is fairly complicated.
The final is another encounter with a dragon while on an airship. Here we get our first glance at stats for an Eberron style elemental airship.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Elemental Power Source - design not even started?

Enworld.org poster Rechan apparently was talking to an unnamed Wizards people, and...

I brought up the Elemental power source, and said, "Y'know, many classes are doing elemental damage. So what's left for the Elemental guys?"

His response was (paraphrasing), "We haven't designed the Elemental classes yet. But when we do, we're going to come up with a Story for them. And that Story is going to reflect their mechanics."



So, Elemental, the only power source not at all released other than Shadow (due to the death of the Ki source) hasn't even been started for Player's handbook 4, or 5 yet.

check out the original post.

Monster Builder official page

Wizards put up the Official preview page for the Adventure tools yesterday, featuring information on the Monster Builder.

First up this quote: Eventually, other releases will follow for Adventure Tools, such as Encounter Builder and Map Builder. In addition to new builders, we'll also continue adding content, enhancements, and new features to D&D Monster Builder, in the same vein as the D&D Character Builder and D&D Compendium.
The accompanying graphic shows the first screen of the program with a button with "Monster Builder" on it, and 4 other blank buttons. So they seem to be planning 4 other tools at minimum.

The page then goes on to describe and visually show editing a monster.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Psion/PHB3 info from Design & Development

In today's design & development article (Subscription required) a few tidbits about the psion, and psionic classes in general in the Player's Handbook Three.

1. Also with the psion's debut comes the new power-point mechanic associated with three of the psionic classes slated for Player's Handbook 3 [...]

So there are going to be Three psionic classes that use power points (and at least one that does not, the monk)

2. We also created specialized rules to replace the Novice Power multiclass feat and Paragon Multiclassing system to handle interactions with swapping encounter and at-will attack powers for multiclass characters.

And as most people presumed, the multiclassing feats will work slightly differently for power-point using classes.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Official Previews for 7/10/2009

Today is the last day of Official previews for the Eberron Campaign Guide and Divine Power, so lets see what we got.

The Eberron Campaign Guide excerpt is about Q'barra, the Jungle nation surrounded by reptilian threats, then goes on to have a PDF of the table of contents of the book. Interesting bits from the TOC:
Sharn, the City of Towers gets a chapter (13 pages) itself.
The Adventure featured in the book (which is called "The Mark of Prophecy") is at the end of the book in an appendix rather than at the beginning like the adventure in the Forgotten Realms Guide did.
There is an index. These are always appreciated.
Each nation of the "Five nations" get at least 6 pages, the rest of the Khovaran nations on average about 3 pages. Each dragonmarked house, including House Tarkanan (aberrant marks) gets 2 pages.


The Divine Power Excerpt is a Epic destiny for worshipers of a god of Death, in which you become their avatar. It includes an ability that kills all weak opponents adjacent to them every turn.

Speaking of Divine Power, this week's Podcast was about the book, and had a few bits of info:
There is a new build of Cleric that focuses more on buffing up your allies than 'bashing' your opponents, and is supposed to be good for people who want a more non-violent character.Elder Green Dragon
The Paladin will get a new Marking Option, called Divine Sanction. It doesn't have a clause that requires the Paladin to continue engaging the enemy, but can still do radiant damage to them.
There will be a Commanding Avenger build also, this build will have leader as a secondary role.


There was also a preview for the next DDM set, Legendary Evils, but all the information was previously known. It did clairify the rarity scheme for the set as having two rares two commons and 1 visible per box.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Free RPG Day Eberron Adventure "Khyber's Harvest" to be posted Online.

The Free RPG Day Adventure for 4th Edition Eberron, "Khyber's Harvest" by Keith Baker will be posted on the Wizard of the Coast website in the next few weeks.

Its a good adventure (I reviewed it here) so enjoy.


Confirmed by Scott Rouse on Wizards.com message boards

Psion and more from DDI update

Yesterday there was a big update of the Character Builder and DDI compendium, among adding last month's books and a dragon and dungeon, the debut of a player's handbook 3 class was added, the psionic controller, the Psion.

For a quick overview of the psion check out this article on critical-hits.

Along with the actual compendium/character builder psion update, there was an article (Subscription required) about the making of the Psion with some juicy information. First it revealed next month's debut will be the Githzerai race (with some feats and a racial Paragon Path) and each month will include an article such as that one, including developer/designer commentary. Finally it is implied that most psionic classes will use the power points system created here:
andy: While the psion is the second class we’ve shown that uses the psionic power source—the monk, appearing in playtest form in Dragon #375, was the first—this is the first class to embrace a key new mechanic shared by most psionic classes slated to appear in the game: psionic augmentation.


In the D&D compendium the new traps and hazards feature had a little (possibly unintentional) easter egg... 4 new traps/hazards from the Eberron Campaign Setting, coming on July 22!
The 4 Traps are: Sewer Valves (if you played the Forgotten forge in the 3.5 ECS you know this one!)- random valves burst forth huge blasts of water. Adjustable level Blaster.
Prophecy Mark - A magical mark on the ground that freezes people in place. Level 1 Obstacle. (this one is seen in one of Monday's Adventure excerpts)
Eldritch Machine - A Strange magical device that can deal necrotic, lighting and thunder damage. Level 2 Elite Blaster
Dead Grey Mist - Dead-gray mist forms a barrier that defines the borders of the Mournland, and appears in drifting clouds of various sizes within the Mournland interior. The mist slows and can eventually cause an affliction in a person who passes through it. Level 11 Obstacle.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Official Previews for 7/06/2009

Lots to cover today, lets get into it!

Divine Power Excerpts: This time gives coverage to the Virtuous Paladin, a new Cha-based build. The build replaces Lay on Hands with a Power that can remove status effects, and it can be used a number of times a day equal to your wis mod.
Also mentioned is the other build: The avenging paladin and the protecting paladin are described in the Player’s Handbook. Divine Power introduces two paladin builds: the ardent paladin, who specializes in offense, and the virtuous paladin, who focuses on resisting harmful effects. My Assumption is that the Ardent Paladin will be another Str based paladin.


Eberron Campaign Guide Excerpts: This time we get some information on the Nation of Monsters, Droaam, and a sample encounter out of adventure in the book. The new monster included are Dolgrim Warriors, and there is a trap for a mark of the Dragonic Prophecy.


Dragon Editorial: This months editorial clarifies what "exclusivity" means for the Revenant, and later, for the assassin class. They will not appear in a later print product, and they will be supported (by feats etc) on DDI only. "since we know there won't be new assassin powers appearing in a power source supplement or Player's Handbook, we're already planning to support September's two complete builds with more support just a few months after. Plus, early next year, we plan to introduce a third assassin build." Though an NPC using the stats may theoretically show up in adventures.
The Assassin is also confirmed to use the shadow power source


Amperstand (requires DDI subscription): This month's amperstand confirms that Draconians, those wonderful Humanoid Dragons from the Dragonlance setting are appearing in Draconomicon 2: Metallic Dragons. This either supports, or removes support to the 2010 setting being Dragonlance. Stats are given for the Aurak and the Sivik Draconians, both of which are to appear in the next DDM set.
He talks a bit about the Psion Debut tomorrow, but nothing that was already known. The Big remaining story here is the Monster Builder screenshot, from the upcoming Adventure Tools.


Previews for July and Beyond: There is 3 juicy pieces of info here, another encounter from the adventure in the ECG; a Divine Power Epic Destiny; and finally 2 Magic items from Adventurer's Vault 2 - the most interesting part is the inclusion of a backstory for the items, and adventure hooks!

phew! that's a lot!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Review: Player's guide to Eberron - Part 5 (and Khyber's Harvest!)

The Finale of this long review (parts 4, 3, 2, 1)

The last chapter of the Player's Guide to Eberron contains regional information, including regional backgrounds, and also contains more information and backgrounds for each Dragonmarked house.

The nations of Eberron are well covered, and coverage is given fairly equally to all the Khorvairian nations, and then each other continent is covered with about the same detail. The "Five Nations" get the most coverage, and some places get two entries (Xen'drik, and its largest city Stormreach; Breland and the world's largest City- Sharn the city of Towers) But it is very good knowledge for a brand new player without being too much to overwhelm them. There is no secret information that a player shouldn't know, like the 3.5 campaign guide had often. I like the mentions of the different nations of Riedra that debuted in Secrets of Sarlona, one of my favourite 3.5 Eberron books, so that made me happy.
The Backgrounds work with the Player's Handbook 2 mechanics, (Can add skill to class list for training, get +2 to skill or gain a language) and the Associated skills are all quite appropriate, but there should be a few language options included in a few places (You should be able to get Goblin as a language if you were born in Darguun, or elven in Aerenal for example.)

The Dragonmarked houses are covered with 2 or 3 backgrounds each, generally covering the guilds the Houses control, which allows to get some information to the player about the house, but it is a little bit of an oblique way of doing so.

The chapter, and book ends off on some other backgrounds apropriate for an Eberron character and Racial backgrounds, covering occupations like Inquistive and those touched by the day of mourning. Each race in this book gets 2 racial backgrounds, except warforged only get one (though they get a house Cannith background earlier in the chapter to themselves also)

8/10 for the chapter, it's good information, but a little dry in places, and information can be a little oblique for the Dragonmarked houses.


All in all, I love the book very very much, and I would venture to say it's my favourite 4th edition book so far, and I really have liked just about every hardcover that has been released so far. I would score the book in its Entirety at 95/100.



And last but not least, a quick review of the Level 2 Eberron Adventure, released the same week as the EPG for Free RPG day, which I was able to procure a copy of.

Written by Eberron's creator, Keith Baker, Khyber's Harvest follows his previous adventures in awesomeness.

I haven't run it yet, but I do plan to run it for a first adventure for my sister (never played D&D before) her boyfriend (hasn't played since 2nd Edition), My girlfriend and her brothers (only played a couple times) and I think it is a good adventure for beginners, especially with the pre-made characters with it.

The first encounter is a very well written skill challenge, and looks like it will run really well, as each check gives more clues and directs the next check, and will keep the skill challenge from seeming too samey.

From there it goes to a pretty simple dungeon crawl scenario, but the fights seem well designed and balanced.

The included dungeon tile is quite cool, and can be used for 2 of the important encounter areas, but only one side is likely to be able to regularly be re-used.

I did notice a couple problems, like its missing a treasure parcel, and the 3 magic items it does give out are ones many characters may not want to use. Also one of the characters has 4 magic items instead of the proper 3.

Overall I can't wait to run the thing, and it was worth the zero dollars I paid for it. I'd expect the adventure to show up on Wizards' site at some point in the next year, like the FRPGD adventure last year did.



Friday, July 3, 2009

Official Previews for 7/03/2009

Three previews today, despite the Wizards offices being closed for the US Holiday, lets see what they have for us...

Divine Heroes 3: The last Player's Handbook Heroes preview before the sets come out on July 22, this time we get a Genasi with a sword and shield, a female cleric in purple (a nice looking repaint of Combat Medic) and a male invoker with a staff that can sub in for a Wizard or Sorcerer very easily. There is a utility power for a cleric also previewed (pictured)
Check them out yourself here.


Divine Power previews the Paragon Tier feats, giving a list of all of them, their prerequisites and a short version of their effects.

There are a few things that can be gleaned from this preview.
1. Paladins get two new optional class features (that possibly take over Lay on Hands) called Ardent vow & call of virtue
2. Avengers get a new build with a new Censure ability, the >Censure of Unity.
3. Strladins get a little bit of work at least with one feat designed for them.


Finally the Eberron Campaign Guide preview covers Xen'drik, the continent of mystery, including a map, and it covers a religion: the Blood of Vol, and includes Lady Erandis Vol, the half-elf/half-green Dragon lich queen of Eberron (pictured). Lady Vol is a level 19 Elite Controller (leader).


Thursday, July 2, 2009

Bruce Cordell talks Psionics

Bruce Cordell, Dungeons and Dragons designer, and lead designer of 3.5's psionics systems, interviewed with Kobold Quarterly , and among other topics, 4th Edition's Psionics came up.

Anyhow, for me psionics adds a story element to the game that serves as a nice foil to arcane magic’s standard stories. It’s not that psionics are better, it is that the power source is different, with a different origin, and subsequently different possibilities for characters who use it.

If the time comes that psionics enters 4th edition, I can tell you right now that it is the story behind the power source that will inspire the design of the various classes that might use psychic strength to overcome their foes.

[...]
The reason psionics has entered the 4th Edition world has a story behind it, which we developed first. With a story to support the psionic power source, certain class features, paragon paths, and even epic destines for psionic character classes suggested themselves that wouldn’t have otherwise occurred to us.

Also, the psionic classes will veer somewhat away from the standard way powers are used by other power sources, but still works very well within the overall system. This will demonstrate the robustness of the 4th Edition exception based design philosophy. It could even end up giving us a chance to really play with the base 4th edition rules and show how it really, truly is exceptions based.


The psion debuts in the DDI Compendium and Character builder on Tuesday July 7th 2009.

Updated Updates

Today is update day in D&D land, and Wizards of the Coast even updated their method of releasing updates. See the whole letter here, but I'll summarize:
-Each update will come with a short explanation of why this power/feat/etc got updated.
-Each update will come with the updated powers/etc formatted as if it were printed.
-This update does not fully apply to RPGA gamers until August 4th (when the next DDI update goes through) though they can choose to use it right away if they wish.

To Summarize the actual rules updates they made:
-The fighter Power rain of blows explicitly can only make 3 attacks now.
-The Channel Divinity Feat, Righteous Rage of Tempus doesn't quite make the next hit a critical, but a 'proto-critical' now.
-Battlerager Fighters don't get temp HP every time they are attacked now, only when they hit (or miss with Invigorating powers) and there is not extra temp HP stacking anymore. Dwarf Stoneblood and Improved Vigor were also changed so they work correctly with this.
Guileful Switch- Has to be used before anything else in a turn and is a free action now.

These updates get rid of a lot of major trouble stops people were having, but still no sign of the double weapon errata Greg Bilsand was talking about last month.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Player's handbook Heroes 2 Preview 4


Arcane heroes 3 - Focusing on minis for Forgotten Realms and Eberron characters.
The set is: Human Swordmage, Human Wizard (based on a 3.5 Forgotten Realms prestige class) and a Warforged Artificer.

The Wizard has a cool utility (pictured) that lets her switch prepared dailies.