Over the Edge 25th Anniversary Edition Playtest

I recently ran a playtest session of Over the Edge’s 25th Anniversary Edition. OtE has been my wife’s very favoritest game since we picked up the 1992 edition some years back, so when we heard there was going to be a new version, of course we were thrilled. This post […]


D&D 5e: Companion NPCs 4

The idea of henchmen NPCs in a D&D party goes all the way back to the earliest games, and was most recently part of official release in D&D 4e. Now, 5e characters are not all that complicated at low levels, but there are still a few more moving parts than one […]


Aurikesh Campaign Format 6

I’ve talked many times in this blog about the format of my Aurikesh campaign, but today I want to dig into it in detail, both for its strengths and its weaknesses. The fundamental format isn’t in any way unique to Aurikesh; from what I have read, it seems to have […]


Tyranny: A Review

I recently finished a playthrough of Tyranny by Obsidian Entertainment. I was a huge fan (and Kickstarter backer) of Pillars of Eternity, so once I heard about Tyranny, I knew it was going to be for me. Tyranny also has a lot in common, thematically, with Stardock Entertainment’s Sorcerer King, which […]


D&D 5e: Five Magic Maces (And a Talisman) 10

A little while back, I posted a collection of magic spears (and a magic helmet), and a reader requested a similar collection for maces. Another reader requested that I cover magic bows, and that’s also on my to-do list. Some of these weapons I treat as specifically needing to be […]

Shadecall and the Fist of Tharamon

Initiative Rules, and How to Pick a Fight 3

There’s a widespread acknowledgement, I believe, that the initiative rules found in D&D, and indeed in most games, are not great and even detract from the game, but they are the least-worst option available. In this post I’m going to talk a bit about the problems with the current model […]


Game Design Is Input/Output

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a game designer in possession of even a modest audience must be in want of a clever new way to talk about fundamental design.” — Jane Austen, on The Forge, circa 2003, probably. This is one of those abstract-theory posts that might be […]


Covfefe: Two Stat Blocks 1

This blog almost never intersects with politics or moment-to-moment pop culture, but today… today I make an exception, out of anger and a nigh-hysteric desire to make something to laugh about. Therefore, in honor of a most excellent Twitter response to a most bizarre and now-deleted tweet. You know what, […]


D&D 5e: The Oath of Binding

A paladin of any particular oath might be obligated by circumstance to guard something evil that has been imprisoned, or something good that must be kept safe. This Oath, though, is for those who make guardianship the core of their duty, binding themselves to their armor. The oath sustains them […]


D&D 5e: Rituals and the Occult 6

My friend Sean Holland is hosting this month’s RPG Blog Carnival, and his topic is Occult Mysteries and Magic. This topic is, of course, near and dear to my heart in gaming, so I hasten to join in. Now magic in D&D doesn’t have a long history of being all […]