D&D General Dungeons & Dragons Sneak Peek at Gameholecon: 50th Anniversary Adventure, Rod of Seven Parts, The Endless Stair, Tsojcanth, Barrier Peaks?

I was leaving a panel at GameHoleCon when Chris Perkins walked in and then Justice and Bill and then quite a few other WotC folk! So I stayed.

Justice Arman, Bill Benham, Amanda Hamon, LaTia Jacquise, Chris Lindsay, Ron Lundeen, Chris Perkins.


I'm glad I did because what started as a very funny trivia game challenge to the WotC folk and some of the audience soon turned into a discussion about things they are working on. Cool things. Oh and some of those questions were by Jon Peterson and were hard! I pride myself in getting a couple correct! Iron Rations for the win! Chris Lindsay talked about the DMSGuild too, and strongly hinted to me about the Manual of the Planes. I just wasn't on the same plane.

Anyway they discussed things that have already been covered, but I think with a bit more detail on particular things. This was more of a conversation than a presentation after all.

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  • Ron Lundeen discussed the internal playtests and that he liked it when he would see similar things discussed in the same ways in both public and private testing.
  • Bill Benham discussed Jaquaysing the maps and adventures and how they are taking that more to heart. I think she was on everyone's mind at the panel, see this thread if you would, she could use our help.
  • Ron also dicussed how he learned that scrolls are a secret magic item table of power and rarity for magic items generally. That's a nice hint I'll have to take a closer look at.
And then Chris talked about how their adventures take this fine line of between having too much and overwhelming new people yet also having to satisfy old hats like myself.
  • The new core books will have an update to format and art like the more recent books.
  • Gateway to new players was a term they kept using for the new PHB and even the DMG.
  • Oh and they mentioned Tasha’s Bubbling Cauldron as a new spell, which Hollie will be delighted with.
  • All three books will have mostly new art from new artists too, like from two concept artists from Obi Wan and the Avatar shows.
Then they went on to the DMG and how it'll talk about what a DM does, what are the parts of the game, the books and even how to use the DM Screen in play.
  • It'll have handouts and tools to help you organize and build your notes and show you a campaign setting designed to be customized as a tutorial to make it your own and eventually build one from scratch.
  • There will be new magic items to fill in more rarity niches and more cool common ones too.
  • And finally we'll get the 1980 cartoon series magic items, something Chris seemed almost giddy about.
The Monster Manual will have more high level creatures and they noted things they'll put in stat blocks that were missing before, like proficiency bonus.

'Romp around the multiverse', I don't think that's a new book title, but it's a new kind of anthology book that revisits all the things they've done in D&D, a '50th anniversary book'. Chris Perkins actually ran the Ravenloft adventure at the convention, I wish I'd captured the events he ran because I'm guessing the title and a few details are in that entry. Anyone here play in his games? Care to share?

And then Chris started to display cool secrets. I'm not sure if any of these are separate books or part of the above mentioned book, but I think they are separate books the way Chris was hinting. I must also offer an apology. There was no way I could get all of these images. I was caught off guard and in a bit of awe. The last one especially is just killing me, it was wonderful and Chris refused to show me after the panel with that wry smile of his.

So here is the only clear image I got. What do you see? Give me your guesses and I'll later give you what the jokes were they made. I even got a laugh out of the crew with one!


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However the missing last image was my biggest regret. It was a cute fluffy bunny on a stump...... Oh the agony! I got a selfie with Chris as a consolation prize!

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OK I’ll spill more. I’m not sure but they indeed seemed to be talking about multiple books and this new book for the 50th. I think they intentionally obfuscated things.
  • The key to me is that the 50th book is a visit to all the 5e adventures and the stuff that isn’t from those are either for the story to tie them together or are from other books
  • The bunny was undead, a Sheep in Wolfs clothing. It was a brand new painting and I didn’t recognize the artist.
  • My joke was that the Rod would fall apart way to easily, as they tried to hint what it was.
So from what they were taking about I think.
  • A D&D 50th Anniversary book
  • An Endless Stair book
  • A Rod of Seven parts book
  • And Expedition to the Barrier Peaks
  • Oh and Tsojcanth
Please note those are all guesses by me. Oh and Tsojcanth.

Chris did say that the D&D 50th book had been announced but I can’t find anything on it.
 
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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I wasn't only thinking about diversity in the modern sense. It simply wasn't something anyone would have thought about in 1980, and there is nothing in the lore that would contradict ethnically diverse illustrations being added (although I'm sure there would be complaints from certain quarters anyway). Gender, on the hand went for "historical authenticity" - whatever that can mean in a fantasy world. Failing to take account that some of the people who play D&D might be female.

But I was also thinking about variety. This is best illustrated by comparing to the Forgotten Realms. We have the pseudo-medieval Europe land over here, the evil magiocracy over there, some Celtic islands off the coast of a plutocratic city, there is a fledgling democracy in the jungles to the south, etc. It might be an unrealistic hodgepodge, but as a place to locate adventures it's far more useful. The switch to the Forgotten Realms wasn't just political, it was also simply a better setting for playing D&D (and it had better names!)

Greyhawk did get lots of soft retcons as adventure modules where set in various regions, so it did gradually become more varied from what was presented in the 1980 folder. But that goes back to the big question: which version of Greyhawk gets revived?
It would take very little work to add in diversity to Greyhawk without losing what Greyhawk is. Including bad names!

Speaking of bad names. It's been years since I've been able to see the flan as anything other than...

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It's even bronze colored!
 
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I have said several times after the Vecna event the D&D multiverse is going to be rebooted, and even without this Greyhawk could be altered by the Vecna's incident in Sigil for the transition from 2nd to 3rd. The geography could be redawn.

But I suspect they are going to await to see the new ideas by the publishers in the DMGuild.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Random thought relating to the possibility of Greyhawk as the light example Setting:

There will be a Lore Glossary in the DMG, sort if a "Canon Bible" for current D&D. Including a Who's Who of NPC snd villains and so on.

Obviously, a lot of the ones we know will be in there (the named Spell magic users) are Greyhawk characters.

But what if the Lore Glossary is something they an to carry forward intonfuture products? So, a Forgotten Realma slipcase or big campaign setting bookmhas a Lore Glossary thar covers the big facts and NPCs of that Setting. So since Greyhawk's major NPCs are the generic D&D NPCs...might fit in with Greyhawk being the generic light example.
 


Parmandur

Book-Friend
So how’d I do?
You were absolutely right that they were teasing more than two things here: they were teasing Vecna's multiveraal all-star celebration story campaign (called it), they were teasing a classic Adventure anthology themed around the Infinite Staircase (called it), and turns out they were teasing a series of new OP store/home Encoutners/Tournament ine-shots with Tsojcanth.

What's not quite clear to me is where the Rod of Seven Parts fits in: that could be the MacGuffin to use against Vecna, or it could be the MacGuffin to tie the Adventures in Quests from the Infinite Staircase together (ot...both...?).

Fun thought, maybe the guy in the image they used to tease QftIS is actually a Wind Duke of Aaqa?

Oh, and unclear where Expedition to the Barrier Peaks fits in: that could be another Encounter/Tournament, using something more like the smaller 1976 Convention Tournament, or it could be in Auests from the Infinite Staircase...or, both?
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
You were absolutely right that they were teasing more than two things here: they were teasing Vecna's multiveraal all-star celebration story campaign (called it), they were teasing a classic Adventure anthology themed around the Infinite Staircase (called it), and turns out they were teasing a series of new OP store/home Encoutners/Tournament ine-shots with Tsojcanth.

What's not quite clear to me is where the Rod of Seven Parts fits in: that could be the MacGuffin to use against Vecna, or it could be the MacGuffin to tie the Adventures in Quests from the Infinite Staircase together (ot...both...?).

Fun thought, maybe the guy in the image they used to tease QftIS is actually a Wind Duke of Aaqa?

Oh, and unclear where Expedition to the Barrier Peaks fits in: that could be another Encounter/Tournament, using something more like the smaller 1976 Convention Tournament, or it could be in Auests from the Infinite Staircase...or, both?
I'd rather see the Rod as the focus of a series of adventures spanning many planes and settings than as something to use against Vecna. It deserves its own thing.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I'd rather see the Rod as the focus of a series of adventures spanning many planes and settings than as something to use against Vecna. It deserves its own thing.
Quite fair: I think it would be cool if the optional frame for Infinite Staircase is "these 7 crazy dungeons throughout the multiverse each have one part of the Rod, please go take them all."
 

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