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News Digest for the Week of March 12

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news. New Unearthed Arcana for Dungeons & Dragons, more previews and playtests for Level Up 5e, Terminator RPG Kickstarter launches, Lasers & Feelings gets a public license, and more!

Don’t forget, you can get all the news every week with Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk! This week, Morrus and Peter are joined by Cassandra MacDonald to talk about DIESEL and Level Up 5e.


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In case you missed it elsewhere on EN World this week:
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Wizards of the Coast released a new Unearthed Arcana with four playtest races for Dungeons & Dragons all with a Fey-based origin. The Fey is a Small-sized flying, well, fey that has innate spellcasting and can squeeze through a space as narrow as one inch. The Hobgoblin of the Feywild is a variation on the Hobgoblin that is Medium-sized with an advantage against being charmed and the ability to use Help as a bonus action. Owlfolk are either Small or Medium sized (your choice at character creation) who can cast detect magic as a ritual and can fly. Rabbitfolk are also either Small or Medium sized, has a hopping ability to add extra movement, can use their reaction to add a d4 to any failed Dexterity save, and add their proficiency bonus to initiative thanks to an ability called…sigh…”hare-trigger”. Following the rapid announcement of Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft following the undead and gothic themed Unearthed Arcana, social media speculation immediately went to two places: An updated Planescape/Manual of the Planes, and a re-imagining of the two-part modules for AD&D 1st Ed by Gary Gygax, EX1 Dungeonland and EX2 The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror.

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Speaking of playtest material, EN Publishing released not one, not two, but three new looks at the upcoming Level Up 5e. First, there’s a new playtest document for the wizard class with the first ten levels available. The biggest changes from the base class are the Level Up wizard gets “Wizard’s Flair” that can add some extra oomph to spells cast and the class’s Exploration Knacks which are keenly tuned to the arcane spellcaster’s flavor. Also, wizards get the cantrip prestidigitation for free, which allows all wizards to use minor magical effects without spending one of their choices just to make illusionary glitter and add a reverb effect to their voice. We also got a new look at one of the biggest expansions in Level Up, the exploration pillar and how the challenges, boons, monster signs, supplies, and safe havens all come together to create an interesting system for storytelling dangerous exploration. And as an added bonus, we got a look at one of those monsters in the green dragon who has become an incredibly dangerous and deceptive ambush predator.

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Nightfall Games officially launched the Kickstarter for the Terminator Roleplaying Game based on the James Cameron film series. The 192-page hardcover will feature rules using the S5S System (previously used in SLA Industries 2nd Edition) to cover the history of the present day and the future war and rules to play in multiple eras. There are also specific weapons rules so that your party in the early 1990s doesn’t have to worry about a Terminator with an M-25 Phased Plasma Pulse-Gun in the 40-watt range. The PDF is available for a £12 (about US$17) pledge, the hardcover for a £40 (about US$56) pledge, and the “Come With Me If You Want to Live” pack featuring the hardcover, GM’s guide, and GM’s screen for £55 (about US$77). This Kickstarter is fully funded and runs until Monday, April 5.

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John Harper, the creator of the early microRPG Lasers & Feelings, has updated the license for the game to allow monetization of hacks of the system. Inspired by the music of The Doubleclicks, Lasers & Feelings is a game where your characters have two scores: Lasers and Feelings. The game was originally released under a Creative Commons Non-Commercial Share-A-Like 3.0 license which allowed other creators to make their own versions of the game so long as they did not sell them commercially and released their version under a Creative Commons license as well. Harper has now changed the license to a Creative Commons Attribution license, meaning that creators can now sell their versions of the game so long as they credit Harper for the original design. The original Lasers & Feelings is available as pay-what-you-want from John Harper’s Itch.io page.

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Coyote & Crow is a science fantasy roleplaying game in an alternate history where colonialism never happened with a Native American design team. Seven hundred years ago, a purple streak shot across the sky leaving two remnants behind, a centuries-long ice age and purple marks on some people, animals, and plants that gave supernatural abilities. Now that the ice sheets are fading, the world is beginning to recover with new technologies and old grudges. The game uses a custom d12 dice pool system where combat is only one way of resolving a conflict. The PDF is available for a $20 pledge, while the hardcover is available for $50. This Kickstarter is closing in on half a million dollars and will fund on Thursday, April 1.

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Paizo unveiled a new line for their Pathfinder 2nd Edition digital adventures, One-Shots. Each adventure will have everything for a single session of adventuring both at your home table and sanctioned for use in the Pathfinder Society organized play. The first of these adventures is Sundered Waves by Pathfinder creator Jason Bulmahn featuring a puzzle-filled pirate’s dungeon. The adventure is available from the Paizo store for $5 and has a Fantasy Grounds version for $4.99 with other virtual tabletop modules coming soon.


That’s all from me for this week! Don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you more gaming news content. If you have any news to submit, email us at news@enpublishingrpg.com, and you can get more discussion of the week’s news on Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk every week. You can follow me on Twitch to get notifications when I go live, subscribe to Gamer’s Tavern on YouTube for videos on gaming history, RPG reviews, and gaming Let’s Plays, or you can listen to the archives of the Gamer’s Tavern podcast. 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

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Interesting the Paizo one shots are Fantasy Grounds not Roll20. Total anecdata, but in my circle, everyone is Roll20. Not sure if there's been any data here on ENWorld about which VTT is dominating the market?
 

Abstruse

Legend
Interesting the Paizo one shots are Fantasy Grounds not Roll20. Total anecdata, but in my circle, everyone is Roll20. Not sure if there's been any data here on ENWorld about which VTT is dominating the market?
I don't have the numbers, but my impression is Roll20 has a slightly larger userbase. I may very well be wrong or be thinking of out-of-date numbers, but I recall it was something like 160,000 active users against 120,000? Either way, based on what Paizo said in the announcement, they plan to go to Roll20 and Foundry (which is apparently popular among Pathfinder 2e players) but haven't announced it yet. Likely they haven't finalized deals with the companies and/or haven't adapted the materials to the other platforms yet. Again, I don't have numbers to back me up and I may be completely wrong, but the appearance to me is that even though Roll20 has a larger userbase, Fantasy Grounds users are more likely to purchase items from the store and so are likely to be a higher priority. I'm going to repeat it again: All this is my speculation based on my own admittedly bad memory and I may be completely and entirely wrong.
 

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