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Page 22 of Hoard of the Dragon Queen contains the following text (emphasis mine):

Determine surprise normally; the dragonclaws' readiness is high.

I checked the PHB and SRD for information on "readiness," but I can't find any information on what it means or how it affects surprise.

So what is meant by "readiness" here?

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This is a reference to a mechanic that was removed just before the final release of the 5e Player Handbook. It can be ignored.

Because HotDQ was released at about the same time as the PH, there were several such times that the adventure used outdated rules. Please see the errata for this adventure for several other fixes.

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  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ HotDQ sounds like a real problem. Melted ice cream everywhere. \$\endgroup\$ – Paul Jun 25 '16 at 0:01

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