Questions relating to Dungeons & Dragons as a whole, or to multiple versions of Dungeons & Dragons.

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47
votes
11answers
7k views

3d6 vs a d20: What is the effect of a different probability curve?

What is the effect on game play of replacing d20 rolls with 3d6 rolls in a D&D 4e campaign? I started thinking about this after reading this question where the example was given of playing a d20 ...
7
votes
3answers
843 views

Cavalier, Acrobat, Barbarian

What's the name of the AD&D book (1st Edition) that has the other character classes that were popularized in the Saturday morning cartoon? I'm talking about the Cavalier, Acrobat, Barbarian, ...
10
votes
5answers
1k views

Are fantasy RPG races racial/cultural analogues to reality?

Prior to a recent game, our group had a great discussion on culture/race and it's relation to RPG races. While it is fairly established that Tolkien based some of the iconic aspects of his fantasy ...
15
votes
6answers
3k views

Relationship Mechanics for D&D/Pathfinder?

My Pathfinder/D&D games tend to involve relationships - romantic, friendly, etc. - between PCs and NPCs alike. 3.x only has the Diplomacy mechanic for any kind of relationship mechanic. I'm ...
16
votes
5answers
1k views

Where does the D&D concept of a dwarf come from?

Where does the modern D&D of a dwarf come from? I've noticed it's fairly far from the old Germanic concept of a dwarf. Where did Gary Gygax and company get the idea for the current long bearded, ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What makes a creature Aberrant?

Aberrant creatures are native to or corrupted by the Far Realm. But what other than origin makes something thematically of the Far Realm?
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Where do you find Dark Sun Minis?

Apart from picking up the old 2ed Dark Sun miniatures off ebay, does anyone have any suggestions for a line of mini's that work well thematically for Dark Sun? Perhaps a line of primitive or aztec ...
40
votes
13answers
1k views

How to communicate to the players that an encounter can be solved also through diplomacy?

When you play D&D, you are not supposed to chat with the enemy during encounters. The system is made for fighting. However, in some circumstances, it would be nice to make the players conscious ...
16
votes
2answers
1k views

Were Illithids inspired by Cthulhu?

Mind Flayers seem to look a whole lot like Cthulhu. Is there any relationship/inspiration between the two?
6
votes
4answers
2k views

On average, how much does beer, wine and spirits cost in Faerun?

Or can someone point me to the relevant sections of the books that talks about this stuff, please? Reason I ask is that I'm trying to gauge the cost of living in Faerun and I plan on repricing some ...
7
votes
5answers
471 views

How to give directions to megadungeon locations without giving players too much info?

One of my favorite blogs, Beyond the Black Gate, had a good post a while back about structuring megadungeon play for episodic (i.e., irregular) games by creating mini-quests or missions that get the ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

In what edition of DnD was the Barbarians's rage introduced?

In what edition of DnD was the Barbarian's rage introduced?
28
votes
6answers
2k views

What were the driving factors in the falling out between Dave Arneson and Gary Gygax?

Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson created the hobby together when they wrote D&D. But later on they had a falling out - what caused that? (We don't need minutiae, just the biggest factors)
29
votes
5answers
7k views

What are the differences between Holmes, Moldvay, and Mentzer D&D?

What are the differences between Holmes, Moldvay, and Mentzer D&D? Also, which one came first?
7
votes
4answers
2k views

How much errata is there in D&D 4e?

I got the initial 3 core rule books when they were first released. From reading various questions and answers here there is errata for the core rules and seem that some involves more than just fitting ...
3
votes
2answers
538 views

What was the inspiration for the Oriental Adventures classes?

DnD Character Classes all have some observable sources and influences: In the Oriental Adventures books there are a bunch of new classes, including Samurai and and Wu Jen. But what are the ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Squares vs. hexes on battle mats

I've always felt that hexes were easier for laying things out on the gaming table in terms of movement and areas of effect because you can do more angles without doing counting tricks. Squares however ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Are D&D Miniatures compatible with D&D HeroScape?

Or are they two completely different incompatible things? Are they at least the same size/scale?
5
votes
5answers
262 views

How do I get players to use their Interrupts?

Is there a good tool to get plays to remember their immediate interrupts? (please remember I play D&D4e with kids, so kid specific answers are always appreciated)
43
votes
10answers
8k views

Overview of D&D retro-clones

I'm getting more and more interested in the D&D retro-clones. I keep seeing various names thrown around, like Labyrinth Lords, Swords and Wizardry, Lycanthropes &… something else starting with ...
11
votes
3answers
614 views

What is the meaning of the “bardic lore” skill?

The bardic lore skill always left me baffled. I never had clear the terms of such skill. A bard can roll a bard lore throw to know some abstruse information. The fact is that the throw is bound to a ...
12
votes
7answers
801 views

Anyone have write-ups (or alternatives) for “missing” skills in D&D 4E?

I decided that my urban campaign setting for 4E would be better off if characters had some "mundane skills and knowledge." One solution is adding the Knowledge, Craft, and Profession skills back in ...
7
votes
5answers
592 views

Has anyone released Castle of the Mad Archmage upper levels?

I'd really like to run COTMA, but for some reason the idea of coming up with the ruins and level 1 kind of intimidate me. I'd like to see some examples that I could either use as written or just use ...
23
votes
4answers
10k views

How to randomly generate a village or town for old school D&D game?

There is a lot of material written on random generation of dungeons for play. But inevitably characters have to return from the to spend those ill-gotten gains. And where else but a nearby ...
14
votes
6answers
647 views

What is a Mega Dungeon?

I've come across the expression "mega dungeon" quite a few times on the net. It seems like it's not just about the size of a den of monsters but it might imply a play style or something. What are the ...
14
votes
4answers
958 views

The Giants modules in BRP Classic Fantasy

I'm interested in playing some of the classic early AD&D adventures, like the Giants modules, with Chaosium's Basic Roleplaying using their Classic Fantasy module. My big issue is power doesn't ...
21
votes
10answers
1k views

What defines the “old school renaissance”?

I'm aware that the old school renaissance (OSR) is all about hearkening back to old versions of D&D and the play styles of the 70's and 80's, but what characteristics really define this movement? ...
8
votes
1answer
390 views

Which version of d20 is World of Warcraft RPG compatible with?

I picked up the WoW RPG a few years back before I knew anything about D&D/d20 and am just now getting around to checking out D&D and am wondering where this book fits into the d20 versions?
69
votes
19answers
10k views

I'm creating an original setting for D&D—where do I start?

Creating a new fantasy setting for D&D is daunting but I don't want to use one of the published settings. I have a blank piece of paper in front of me and a whole world to create. My friends want ...
12
votes
7answers
390 views

What would be some good monsters for Planet of the Apes D&D?

A while back I got the idea of Planet of the Apes as an classic D&D game with "ape as class". Gorillas would be fighters, Orangutan clerics, Chimpanzees magic users, and Humans thieves making ...
10
votes
8answers
554 views

Minimum player knowledge of the rules

None of my group of players have read any of the rule books, not even the Player's Handbook. I find this isn't a problem when making rulings, as they all accept my word (and a quick lookup if I'm not ...
12
votes
10answers
510 views

Balancing character levels

It makes sense that if you are in a group from the beginning that everyone in the group would be roughly the same level. Yes some classes level up faster than other but in general there is a balance ...
18
votes
11answers
956 views

Encouraging out-of-the-box thinking in combat encounters

I'm a GM currently running D&D 3.5. I try to think of situations that present the players with a number of possible solutions. The players, however, always resort to the same pattern of killing ...
13
votes
6answers
239 views

Clocking the round. Tools?

Chess players use a special clock to keep timings of each move within a reasonable amount, or they lose. During fighting session, I'd like to introduce a similar technique to prevent excessive ...
32
votes
4answers
45k views

What are the differences between D&D 3.5 and D&D 4th edition?

I have a small group of players who don't play often and we've been playing D&D 3.5. I wanted to know if there are any significant differences between D&D 3.5 and D&D 4e? Do they use a ...
11
votes
7answers
296 views

Cameo Characters?

There are some good books in the Forgotten Realms library. Do you use cameo characters form these books? If so how do you balance them with your campaign? I know there was a campaign that came with ...
11
votes
6answers
518 views

D&D 4 - does it suffer as much drift / house-ruling as previous versions? (Primarily 3 and 2)

Let me start by clarifying "drift". 'Drift' is the process by which a playgroup, consciously or unconsciously, moves away (drifts) from playing the game according to the rules as written (RAW). Other ...
16
votes
8answers
2k views

What adventures are there out there that would fit in this old school campaign?

In a few weeks I'm starting a game of old school D&D for a group of fairly new players, and I'd like to be able to have a few published modules to drop on my hex map, so I can mix it up a bit and ...
10
votes
1answer
713 views

What's the big appeal to Majestic Wilderlands?

I've been seeing a lot about this setting lately, and although I've looked over some of the material, I don't feel like I "get" it. That is by no means a criticism--I'm pretty interested, but it ...
10
votes
3answers
391 views

Any news regarding Planescape?

Riding on the coattails of the equivalent question on Spelljammer... Is there anything happening on the Planescape front? Both Wizards-related as well as independent updates are interesting.
3
votes
4answers
252 views

What is the current state of affairs of SpellJammer?

Is there an expectation of anything happing with it in the future?
8
votes
5answers
414 views

Writing a book from D&D adventures?

Are there instances of someone who wrote a successful book out of adventures played with friends?
7
votes
3answers
254 views

How to gather a group of players in a foreign country?

I am a person who has to relocate a lot due to employment reasons. I tried to build English-playing groups with little or no success. In some cases, I was able to gather only one person or two. Only ...
48
votes
26answers
4k views

What alternatives are there to replace orcs, kobolds, and hobgoblins in low-level encounters?

In your average "generic D&D" campaign and setting, orcs, kobolds, and hobgoblins are frequently used to stock low level adventures and dungeons. These are usually nice for 1st/2nd level ...
34
votes
15answers
3k views

Narrative Combat versus Use of Miniatures

When I first started playing D&D, my DM did not use battlemaps or miniatures to describe combat. Everything was described to us, and questions to the DM were part and parcel of the experience, ...
15
votes
15answers
2k views

What are some interesting ways to structure a random encounter table? [closed]

The standard tables I've seen have been basic 'Wandering Monster' tables where you roll some dice in order to generate a random encounter. I'm sure many have taken this concept further, but I haven't ...
16
votes
6answers
867 views

Can you use a Spelljammer ship to get to Ravenloft?

This is an insane question, I know. But it's one that's been bugging me for at least half my 33-year life. :) I love both the Spelljammer and Ravenloft settings of AD&D 2nd Edition. One of the ...
22
votes
5answers
2k views

How many editions of Dungeons & Dragons are there?

How many editions of Dungeons & Dragons are there?
58
votes
19answers
4k views

How should a GM deal with sexuality in an RPG?

I think it's a matter of fact that since the first moment a player realizes that he or she can interact with someone of the opposite sex romantically within the game, things get hairy. I had my fair ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

AC differences between AD&D 1E and Basic D&D?

I understand that there are differences between the way Armor Class works in AD&D (first edition) and Basic D&D (the boxed sets, Rules Cyclopedia, etc.), but I don't have the books to check it ...