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

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30
votes
11answers
7k views

Is a GM hiding rolls standard?

I haven't been playing D&D for too long, maybe a year, but the DM of the main campaign I'm in always hides his dice rolls. I don't have an issue with it, but when I play with another group the DM ...
21
votes
1answer
1k views

What D&D manual describes this game dragons play?

In a D&D manual, I once read about a game that dragons play against each other. They use kingdoms as pawns and the games can last decades or centuries. What book is the game in or what is the ...
14
votes
4answers
18k views

How do I upgrade older D&D adventures to 5th edition?

Before I get into the details I just want to mention that I'm working in a remote area right now and don't have access to the 5e Starter Set, just the downloadable PDFs. I'm looking for advice on how ...
23
votes
3answers
3k views

Why do druids use scimitars?

I know this question has been asked on other forums, and I have heard some explanations, but I wondered if there was a source that could be cited (not the rule itself, rather an outside source that ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there D&D random encounter tables where # monsters encountered is dependent upon party size?

For example, say a party of adventurers is journeying through a wilderness region which is known to be patrolled by Orcs and other nasties. A party of 2-3 adventurers would surely attract less ...
5
votes
6answers
1k views

Does Constitution influence Charisma?

I was looking around and notice that low constitution monsters usually are ugly (like skeletons) after all low constitution make you ugly, right? So, it's that a case where Charisma can be influenced ...
4
votes
3answers
117 views

Which edition(s) of D&D is the Caverns of Thracia (1979) compatible with?

I am interested in running an open table along the same lines described by this Alexandrian post and I want to use the original Judges Guild Caverns of Thracia. I can find a compatible OSR game I'm ...
57
votes
10answers
12k views

Player has arachnophobia: what to use in place of spiders?

I have a player who joined an ongoing campaign; after a session which involved a fight against giant spiders and an anxiety attack, I was asked by said player's partner to remove the spiders from the ...
3
votes
1answer
100 views

What is the logic behind the interactions of positive and negative energy? [closed]

Positive and negative energy have a rather idiosyncratic relationship. While ostensibly opposites, creatures and spells that make use of these energies interact in ways that do not seem to follow a ...
21
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the reason for introducing the rule for Attacks of Opportunity in D&D?

The Attacks of Opportunity are an important part in D&D and spinoffs of the game like Pathfinder. What does this rule do for the game-system? How does it affect the fun of the players? Why was ...
21
votes
7answers
1k 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 ...
19
votes
2answers
377 views

Do common folk like staying dead?

This is based on How do I prevent a character from being resurrected? One of the answers was that a good way to keep them dead is to threaten a loved one, but then the comments pointed out that you ...
11
votes
5answers
609 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 ...
8
votes
5answers
720 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 ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

Are there advantages to descending AC?

From a game design standpoint, are there any advantages to descending AC? I've tagged this D&D because I think this was the most popular game which required a low AC all the way to the year 2000 ...
27
votes
3answers
865 views

What is the reason behind “one level at a time” level advancement in D&D?

During the answering to this question about large experience point gains getting truncated -- when a single XP award would raise a character more than one level at a time -- the following question ...
7
votes
3answers
936 views

Give your players characters to play or let them decide for themselves? [closed]

I am starting out as a DM in my third D&D game (first as a DM), and during my time making a world and an adventurer I found out that the characters playing your game (ingame characters of the ...
12
votes
2answers
677 views

What is the difference between arcane and eldritch in D&D lore?

As the title says, I am curious if the D&D lore mentions the differences between arcane power and eldritch power. I noticed that eldritch is mostly associated with "evil" aspects of the mythology,...
1
vote
6answers
14k views

A Game Board for D&D?

So I'm a new GM, and I notice there's usually a problem with positioning, so I started drawing EXACTLY what happens on the map in combat for my players. Thing is it gets messy, annoying and time ...
9
votes
3answers
894 views

What types of food are typically grown in the Underdark?

I'm currently working on a story arc where a bunch of Drow have just had their major food supply threatened by a demon of the Underdark, and as a consequence they are rising to the surface and ...
8
votes
3answers
856 views

Considering Complex Dice Roll Probabilities

Hoping someone more math and excel/troll/anydice competent than I can help me out. I've long been considering implementing some Dungeon World style die roll mechanics into D&D. With Next about ...
23
votes
4answers
4k views

What does “chaotic” as in “chaotic good” or “chaotic evil” mean?

I do not play D&D, but players in my roleplaying game have called stuff "chaotic," like "chaotic good" and "chaotic evil" and I would like to know what they mean. The game I play does not use this ...
11
votes
1answer
618 views

Source for Pelor, the Burning Hate's claim that Pelor refused to destroy a vampire

In the old Wizards forum post Pelor, the Burning Hate, several sources are mentioned for the conjecture put forth, that Pelor is actually evil. Some of these have specific page references, some do ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Why can't a Cleric use a sling?

So by the book 1st Edition AD&D, clerics can't use a sling. Other than game balance (it essentially means that other than the odd thrown hammer clerics have no ranged weapon ability which further ...
8
votes
1answer
385 views

Is there any precedent for granting a circumstantial bonus to ranged attacks made from high ground in D&D?

I have been told that having the high ground is historically useful for military units in general but also ranged combatants in particular. I am the DM who has to make this call, but having never shot ...
11
votes
2answers
713 views

Need a good “Katrina Horror” scenario/resources for my Pathfinder campaign [closed]

AVAST! THAR BE SPOILERS AHEAD! In my current Pathfinder campaign, set in Golarion, I'm mashing up the Second Darkness Adventure Path, initially set in the seedy pirate-infested town of Riddleport, ...
10
votes
9answers
9k views

What is a good way to explain the difference between a Chaotic Neutral character, and a character who is just crazed?

When I first started playing with a group of completely new players, one of the first things I did was to explain the alignments as best I could at the time. When describing Chaotic Neutral, my exact ...
7
votes
2answers
627 views

Are doppelgangers neuter?

Because of their shapechanging ability, I was wondering if Doppelgangers have a sex or are they sexless? Are they male, female or neither? Does it differ between editions of D&d?
40
votes
6answers
20k 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 ...
25
votes
2answers
3k views

Is there an iconic monster or creature for each alignment?

In my D&D 5e game, I have a custom cosmology, and I'm currently working on a concept for an afterlife plane where any sentient creature who enters is sorted by alignment and guided to the ...
7
votes
1answer
593 views

Do the precursors to D&D 5e include details for magic items in their respective Players' Handbooks

In one of my other questions, there appears to be a popular opinion in the comments that the general absence of a Magic Items section in the D&D 5e PHB (and their restriction to the DMG) infers ...
25
votes
4answers
14k views

I'm a quarter Draconian, a quarter Dragonborn and half Half-Dragon?

What are the differences between "Dragonborn", "Half-Dragon", and "Draconian" races in D&D? In the Hoard of the Dragon Queen adventure, for example there is a Half-Dragon npc. I had assumed that ...
3
votes
0answers
101 views

How can I create a magic system that works like the one in The Black Company novels? [closed]

I'm building a D&D campaign modeled after the Black Company books by Glen Cook. I especially like the system of magic used in his books. What guidelines should I follow when creating a magic ...
43
votes
5answers
8k views

Why do Sorcerers use Charisma?

Sorcerers use Charisma as their primary Ability Score for spell-casting in Dungeons and Dragons. Wizards use Intelligence to cast, and Clerics use Wisdom. Intelligence and Wisdom make sense for the ...
4
votes
8answers
3k views

Which D&D spells are most likely to encourage creative role-playing? [closed]

Beyond the Cantrip/Wish spells, which are fairly open ended, which other spells are most likely to encourage creative role-playing in a D&D session?
9
votes
2answers
369 views

Are the names of the more generic planes copyrighted under the OGL as Product Identity?

E.g. "Negative Energy Plane", "Elemental Plane of Air", "Material Plane", essentially all the inner planes plus the material plane: Are these considered Product Identity or could I use them for other ...
4
votes
1answer
78 views

Are there any established artifacts of Garl Glittergold?

Recently Garl Glittergold has taken a larger than expected role in my game and I'm looking for artifacts related to him. After searching for awhile I've been unable to find any. I'm aware that I can ...
3
votes
1answer
147 views

Legality of publishing a book based on a D&D game

I'm planning to write a book based on a game of Dungeons and Dragons. The rest of the people in my party will get credit as will the DM, who wrote the adventure. If I change the things that were ...
21
votes
3answers
2k views

Can I use a salad fork to get into the Prime Material Plane?

In several editions of Dungeons and Dragons, the Plane Shift spell requires a forked metal rod, the design and material of which varies depending on the destination plane. Is there any canonical list ...
22
votes
8answers
24k views

Homebrew D&D with only 2 players (plus DM)

I DM'ed for my buddies this semester and it was really fun. I got my roommate hooked and now he's asking for me to make another campaign (I've got a great idea). The problem lies in the fact that I'll ...
15
votes
1answer
683 views

Where did the misspelling 'Lloth' originate?

In the past you could sometimes come across the deity Lolth being spelled 'Lloth'. I once heard it was a typo that somehow kept being repeated. Where did the spelling 'Lloth' first appear?
1
vote
1answer
235 views

What to do when your character gets stabbed in the back by the whole party? [closed]

I'm fairly new to playing D&D. I played a few games with my husband. This is the first game I have played where he was not a player or the DM. I am running a Paladin (of Mask the god of ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Do different monsters cooperate? Do I need to justify it when they do?

I'm new to GMing, and am having difficulty with understanding how often different types of monsters interact cooperatively (so to speak). In keeping with trying to give my PC's variety, and to also ...
62
votes
3answers
78k views

What are the big differences between the D&D editions?

I've been out of the loop for a while, and I used to play AD&D 2nd ed, but today I find there are a lot of different versions that have fairly different gameplay. Can anyone summarize the really ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Have classes and levels ever been recognized officially in-game?

Has there ever been an official (A)D&D product in which character levels (as per the rules governing the game) were recognized and utilized to some degree in-game, within the game world, by the ...
1
vote
0answers
95 views

How many D&D rule books from 1st edition to 5th are there? [closed]

Im doing an item on D&D for my class and i thought that the amount of D&D rule books would be an interesting statistic.I can imagine there are hundreds of them but i cant seem to be able to ...
3
votes
0answers
120 views

How do I approach my DM about toning down the game's lethality? [closed]

I am a new D&D player with a group of 4 players with level 4 characters. Every session at least one and sometimes two of the party end up unconscious and close to dying, and at the end of the ...
5
votes
1answer
209 views

Did it change that demons,… could be killed only on their natural plane?

Back in the days there was the novel series resolving around Cadderly the priest. In there it was stated that demons killed on the physical plane just come back after a hundred years. I'm pretty sure ...
65
votes
1answer
4k views

Why does “dungeon” mean the places adventurers go to kill stuff?

Why does ‘dungeon’, in the context of roleplaying games and D&D in particular, mean the places adventurers go to kill stuff? I’m asking because ‘dungeon’ usually means a kind of prison, and I can’...
12
votes
7answers
918 views

Is it legal to design and publish a game with D&D's ability scores?

If I were to design an RPG that had Str/Dex/Con/etc... would it be legal to publish it? I know that games like Pathfinder and Dungeon World got away with it, but I'm not sure how or why. Looking at D&...