News Digest for August 18, 2023

Critical Role setting book on D&D Beyond, Wizards of the Coast states plans to return to previously published 5e settings, new RuneQuest sourcebooks, and more!

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! Critical Role setting book on D&D Beyond, Jeremy Crawford confirms return to previously published 5e D&D settings, new RuneQuest release, and more!

For a quick summary of the week’s news, Jessica Hancock will bring you up to speed with EN Live's This Week in TTRPG every Friday.

Don’t forget, you can keep up with all the week’s gaming news in detail with Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk. This week, Peter and Jessica talk about the winners of the 2023 ENnie Awards.

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In case you missed it elsewhere on EN World this week:
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Wizards of the Coast has begun releasing third-party “Partnered Content” to D&D Beyond. The first product available is Darrington Press’s Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn, the campaign guide to the world of Critical Role. The sourcebook gives you access to a digital copy of the book plus all of the subclasses, feats, backgrounds, magic items, creature stat blocks, and more available in the D&D Beyond digital tools such as the character builder. Right now, the book is on sale with a 25% discount for $29.99. This release fulfills one of the promises made by Wizards of the Coast in the wake of the OGL controversy at the start of the year to allow third-party publishers access to the D&D Beyond marketplace.

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The project page for the upcoming EN Publishing Kickstarter for the Level Up: Advanced 5th Edition Starter Box is now live. This set is designed for players familiar with 5e rules already who want to explore the options available in Level Up by adding the new rules systems to their existing 5e rules from whatever the source. The box set includes a 66-page rulebook with rules to “upgrade” your 5e rules, a three-part adventure designed to introduce new rules concepts as you go, five pre-generated characters featuring the new player options and character abilities, 91 cardboard tokens for heroes, villains, and monsters, and five poster maps. Sign up on the Kickstarter page to be notified when this project goes live.

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Jeremy Crawford of Wizards of the Coast confirmed in an interview with ComicBook.com that we have not seen the last of the campaign settings already released for D&D. Without stating any specifics, Crawford stated that there are plans in the works to return to already released campaign settings such as Ravenloft, Eberron, Spelljammer, Dragonlance, and Planescape. From the interview:

We love [the campaign setting books], because they help highlight just how wonderfully rich D&D is. They highlight that D&D can be gothic horror. D&D can be fantasy in space. D&D can be trippy adventures in the afterlife, in terms of Planescape. D&D can be classic high fantasy, in the form of the Forgotten Realms. It can be sort of a steampunk-like fantasy, like in Eberron. We feel it's vital to visit these settings, to tell stories in them. And we look forward to returning to them. So we do not view these as one-shots.

Crawford also stated that the game’s expansion in the multiverse aspects of the Dungeons & Dragons cosmology will allow more releases exploring these worlds. He also commented on the rather reserved release schedule for D&D products, saying:

Our approach to how we design for the game and how we plan out the books for it is a play-first approach. At certain times in D&D's history, it's really been a read-first approach. Because we've had points in our history where we were producing so many books each year, there was no way anyone could play all of it. In some years it would be hard to play even a small percentage of the number of things that come out. Because we have a play-first approach, we want to make sure we're coming out with things at a pace where if you really wanted to, and even that would require a lot of weekends and evenings dedicated to D&D play, you could play a lot of it.

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BKOM Studios and Paizo announced that the Pathfinder: Gallowspire Survivors video game will launch into Steam Early Access on September 14th. This roguelite action RPG places players in the role of one of three heroes - Fighter, Wizard, and Rogue - and bring a single companion with them on a dungeon delve against the forces of the lich-emperor Tar-Baphon. For those unfamiliar with the roguelite genre, characters unlock abilities as they progress through the game to upgrade their characters in a procedurally generated world that presents a unique experience every time it’s played. The "lite" part means that unlike roguelike games, some progress is saved when you inevitably get defeated by the waves of enemies constantly pressing on you with only brief respites from the action. Pathfinder: Gallowspire Survivors is available to wishlist now on Steam.

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Chaosium released two new titles for the Cults of RuneQuest sourcebook series for the RuneQuest RPG. Each of these books expands on the pantheon of gods available for the RuneQuest setting with Cults of RuneQuest: The Lightbringers adding 19 new cults of the storm pantheon while Cults of RuneQuest: The Earth Goddesses adds 16 cults for the earth pantheon. Both books offer new ways to integrate these cults into your campaigns with rules to advance characters to God-Talker, Rune Priest/Priestess, or Rune Lord plus lore and history of the gods of each pantheon. Cults of RuneQuest: The Lightbringers is a 168-page hardcover available for $39.99 or $19.99 in PDF on DriveThruRPG, while Cults of RuneQuest: The Earth Goddesses is a 144-page hardcover for $37.99 or $18.99 in PDF.

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Free League released the much-anticipated Dragonbane core boxed set, the first official English language version of the landmark Swedish RPG Drakar och Demoner. This new edition of the 1982 classic features a boxed set with the core rules for the d20-based (but not 5e) rules system along with eleven complete adventures that can be played individually or tied together in the Secret of the Dragon Emperor campaign. Also included in the box is the Alone in the Deepfall Breach booklet for solo play, a full-color map of the Misty Vale, illustrated playing cards for adventures and treasure, ten transparent polyhedral dice including 2d20, five pre-generated characters, cardboard standees, and a double-sided battle mat. The physical edition is only available in hobby game stores with a retail price of $49.99. The PDF version came out earlier this year on DriveThruRPG for $24.95, and a version for the Foundry VTT is available for 248.00 kr (US$22.63, £17.78).


That’s all from me for this week! Don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you more gaming news content. Until next time, may all your hits be crits! Note: Links to Amazon, Humble Store, Humble Bundle, and/or DriveThru may contain affiliate links with the proceeds going to the author of this column.
 

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Darryl Mott

Darryl Mott

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