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5E The New D&D Book: Tasha's Cauldron of Everything!

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The new D&D book has been revealed, and it is Tasha's Cauldron of Everything, "a magical mixture of rules options for the world's greatest roleplaying game." The 192-page book is due out November 17th, with standard and alternate covers, and contains more subclasses, spells, character options, group patrons, and rules. Oh, and psionics!


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Cover art is by Magali Villeneuve

WHAT WONDERFUL WITCHERY IS THIS?

A magical mixture of rules options for the world's greatest roleplaying game.

The wizard Tasha, whose great works include the spell Tasha’s hideous laughter, has gathered bits and bobs of precious lore during her illustrious career as an adventurer. Her enemies wouldn’t want these treasured secrets scattered across the multiverse, so in defiance, she has collected and codified these tidbits for the enrichment of all.
  • EXPANDED SUBCLASSES. Try out subclass options for every Dungeons & Dragons class, including the artificer, which appears in the book.
  • MORE CHARACTER OPTIONS. Delve into a collection of new class features and new feats, and customize your character’s origin using straightforward rules for modifying a character’s racial traits.
  • INTRODUCING GROUP PATRONS. Whether you're part of the same criminal syndicate or working for an ancient dragon, each group patron option comes with its own perks and types of assignments.
  • SPELLS, ARTIFACTS & MAGIC TATTOOS. Discover more spells, as well as magic tattoos, artifacts, and other magic items for your campaign.
  • EXPANDED RULES OPTIONS. Try out rules for sidekicks, supernatural environments, natural hazards, and parleying with monsters, and gain guidance on running a session zero.
  • A PLETHORA OF PUZZLES. Ready to be dropped into any D&D adventure, puzzles of varied difficulty await your adventurers, complete with traps and guidance on using the puzzles in a campaign.
Full of expanded content for players and Dungeon Masters alike, this book is a great addition to the Player's Handbook and the Dungeon Master’s Guide. Baked in you'll find more rule options for all the character classes in the Player's Handbook, including more subclass options. Thrown in for good measure is the artificer class, a master of magical invention. And this witch's brew wouldn't be complete without a dash of added artifacts, spellbook options, spells for both player characters and monsters, magical tattoos, group patrons, and other tasty goodies.

Here's the alternate cover:

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UPDATE! An online event called D&D Celebration from September 18th-20th will be hosted by Elle Osili-Wood, which is "an epic live event with panels, gameplay, & previews of the book!" See the video in the Tweet below!

Gather your party and join the adventure at  D&D Celebration 2020, an online gaming event open to fans all over the world!

Celebrate the release of  Icewind Dale: Rime of the Frostmaiden  with a weekend of Icewind Dale–themed virtual play sessions and help us create the biggest virtual tabletop roleplaying game event ever! Fans will also get the chance to preview some content from  Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything, the forthcoming book featuring massive rules options, subclasses, and more for the fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Watch featured play sessions with D&D luminaries and learn something new with a slate of panels led by the D&D design team and community.


UPDATE! Check out the Nerdarchy site for some previews.


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UPDATE! Other news items around the web about this book:




 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

Parmandur

Legend
Kind of, it takes some liberties with the system though. They could have done an excellent Baldur's Gate style game using 4e, the edition was perfect for a tactical turn based game.

I think there was also the sword coast legends which I believe was based on 4e but apparently didn't quite pull of the game as well as it could have.

Sword Coast Legends was nominally 5E, but gave approximately no approximation to actual tabletop rules of any any Edition.

There was a video game adaptation of the Tomb of Annihilation boardgame, that uses the 4E Lite rules from the Adventure boardgame series.
 

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cbwjm

Hero
Sword Coast Legends was nominally 5E, but gave approximately no approximation to actual tabletop rules of any any Edition.

There was a video game adaptation of the Tomb of Annihilation boardgame, that uses the 4E Lite rules from the Adventure boardgame series.
I actually have the tomb of annihilation game, something like that but more advanced with the actual 4e rules would have been cool. I waited for the game all throughout 4e but it never came.
 

Undrave

Hero
That is pretty much the exact route I took with my warlord class. - Start with the understanding that a level 20 BM fighter is as good at maneuvers as a 7th level Warlord. Then work on variations and scaling them.

How do you figure that balance? Based on the Eldritch Knight's spell progression?
 


Azzy

Newtype
It's at #15 in All Books right now...and it's just pre-order for $50!

Is there a benefit to pre-order rather than waiting to closer to the release date?

As someone else said, if you preorder the book from Amazon, they have a price guarantee. The price of the preordered item fluctuates during preorder (for reasons I assume is due to the number of people preordering the item), if the price dips to a lower price after you preorder the item and then shoots back up afterwards, you are guaranteed to pay the lowest price.
 

Parmandur

Legend
can you give a quick example? Is it like "+3 proficiency is +1d6 to your ability check"? Or am I wildly off base here?

It's detailed in the DMG alternative rules section, but in short, instead of adding a Proficiency Bonus to a d20 Skill roll, you roll an extra die (or two dice for Expertise) and add the result:

  • +2 > +1d4
  • +3 > +1d6
  • +4 > +1d8
  • +5 > +1d10
  • +6 > +1d12

This makes any given roll noticably swingier (particularly for a Rogue or Bard), but over the long term is a mathematical wash.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
It's detailed in the DMG alternative rules section, but in short, instead of adding a Proficiency Bonus to a d20 Skill roll, you roll an extra die (or two dice for Expertise) and add the result:

  • +2 > +1d4
  • +3 > +1d6
  • +4 > +1d8
  • +5 > +1d10
  • +6 > +1d12

This makes any given roll noticably swingier (particularly for a Rogue or Bard), but over the long term is a mathematical wash.

Is it though? Let's take +3/1d6 as an example. (equivalent to level 5, a very "useful" level in 5e)

1d20+3 = 20 results, ranging from 4 to 23. Average is 13.5

1d20+1d6 = 120 results, ranging from 2 to 26. Average is 14

So the 2 dice methods yield a tiny bonus, and a wider range of results. So seems more wild yes?

But with a d20, all results are equally as likely (5%). On a 2-dice roll with 2 dices of uneven size, the distribution is a truncated pyramid. In this case, the lowers and max results are also the least likely: 2 or 26 are 1/120 likely each (less than 1% each) Meanwhile, the central values (7 to 71) are still 5%. So numbers at the extreme of the 1d20+3 range (4,5,6 and 22 and 23) are less likely. So, in fact so while it feels more swingy, it's a bit less.

thank you for replying to my question.
 


Cadence

Legend
Supporter
Is it though? Let's take +3/1d6 as an example. (equivalent to level 5, a very "useful" level in 5e)

1d20+3 = 20 results, ranging from 4 to 23. Average is 13.5

1d20+1d6 = 120 results, ranging from 2 to 26. Average is 14

So the 2 dice methods yield a tiny bonus, and a wider range of results. So seems more wild yes?

But with a d20, all results are equally as likely (5%). On a 2-dice roll with 2 dices of uneven size, the distribution is a truncated pyramid. In this case, the lowers and max results are also the least likely: 2 or 26 are 1/120 likely each (less than 1% each) Meanwhile, the central values (7 to 71) are still 5%. So numbers at the extreme of the 1d20+3 range (4,5,6 and 22 and 23) are less likely. So, in fact so while it feels more swingy, it's a bit less.

thank you for replying to my question.

Is it a problem in your argument that the extreme values you are comparing aren't the same ones. The 4, 5, 6, and 22, 23 for the d20+3 are now split up among the 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 22, 23, 24, 25, 26 in the d20+d6. So yes, the two most extreme values in the d20+d6 are now less likely than the two most extreme values in the d20+3... but the d20+d6 has more different extreme values. In particular, with the d20+3 you can't even get far enough out to get the 2, 3, or 24, 25, 26 that you can with the d20+d6.

Here are four arguments I'd give as to why the d20+d6 would be considered more "swingy" than the d20+3.
1) It has a greater variance: 36 1/6 vs. 33 1/4.
2) If you imagined a system with a take 10 or take 20, and you rolled the d6 instead of just adding 3, it would change some previously guaranteed successes to depending on a die roll.
3) It gives you a chance of failure at 3 and 4 that you wouldn't have had otherwise.
4) It gives you a chance of success at 24, 25, 26 that you wouldn't have had otherwise.

On the other hand, in D&D you're trying to roll at or above a (generally not really small) target number. The d20+d6 has a lower chance of success if a 3 or 4 is needed, an equal chance if a 5 is needed, and a higher chance for any given target of 6 or higher. It feels like the added 2.5% chance of success over most of the range is a lot more noticeable than a small bit of swing.
 

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Parmandur

Legend
Is it though? Let's take +3/1d6 as an example. (equivalent to level 5, a very "useful" level in 5e)

1d20+3 = 20 results, ranging from 4 to 23. Average is 13.5

1d20+1d6 = 120 results, ranging from 2 to 26. Average is 14

So the 2 dice methods yield a tiny bonus, and a wider range of results. So seems more wild yes?

But with a d20, all results are equally as likely (5%). On a 2-dice roll with 2 dices of uneven size, the distribution is a truncated pyramid. In this case, the lowers and max results are also the least likely: 2 or 26 are 1/120 likely each (less than 1% each) Meanwhile, the central values (7 to 71) are still 5%. So numbers at the extreme of the 1d20+3 range (4,5,6 and 22 and 23) are less likely. So, in fact so while it feels more swingy, it's a bit less.

thank you for replying to my question.
Is it a problem in your argument that the extreme values you are comparing aren't the same ones. The 4, 5, 6, and 22, 23 for the d20+3 are now split up among the 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 22, 23, 24, 25, 26 in the d20+d6. So yes, the two most extreme values in the d20+d6 are now less likely than the two most extreme values in the d20+3... but the d20+d6 has more different extreme values. In particular, with the d20+3 you can't even get far enough out to get the 2, 3, or 24, 25, 26 that you can with the d20+d6.

Here are four arguments I'd give as to why the d20+d6 would be considered more "swingy" than the d20+3.
1) It has a greater variance: 36 1/6 vs. 33 1/4.
2) If you imagined a system with a take 10 or take 20, and you rolled the d6 instead of just adding 3, it would change some previously guaranteed successes to depending on a die roll.
3) It gives you a chance of failure at 3 and 4 that you wouldn't have had otherwise.
4) It gives you a chance of success at 24, 25, 26 that you wouldn't have had otherwise.

On the other hand, in D&D you're trying to roll at or above a (generally not really small) target number. The d20+d6 has a lower chance of success if a 3 or 4 is needed, an equal chance if a 5 is needed, and a higher chance for any given target of 6 or higher. It feels like the added 2.5% chance of success over most of the range is a lot more noticeable than a small bit of swing.

Yeah, it's not identical, but the balance is close enough for WotC calculations, in terms of Class abilities and expectations.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
It's definitely a valid way to do it.

I think the question becomes - it it more fun to do it this way? More complicated? If it's not more fun (and it is slightly more complicated, you are adding 3 numbers together, not 2) it's probably not worth doing.
 

Parmandur

Legend
It's definitely a valid way to do it.

I think the question becomes - it it more fun to do it this way? More complicated? If it's not more fun (and it is slightly more complicated, you are adding 3 numbers together, not 2) it's probably not worth doing.

YMMV: WotC surveys during the playtest suggest people overall prefer the static bonus, and there is definitely something to be said for the added predictability.

Mike Mearls said on several occat that this was the one thing he would have most preferred to make it in the final product as a designer, that the player base rejected.
 



doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Kind of, it takes some liberties with the system though. They could have done an excellent Baldur's Gate style game using 4e, the edition was perfect for a tactical turn based game.

I think there was also the sword coast legends which I believe was based on 4e but apparently didn't quite pull of the game as well as it could have.
If by some liberties, you mean, “used 4e names for things but was otherwise fairly unrelated”. 😂

It’s a fun game, though.
 

To be clear, I like Phantom Menace a lot! I actually think it’s the strongest film of the prequels. It just, again, isn’t relevant to what I think is the narrative core of the series. Episode order is fine, but it is far less narratively focused and thematically cohesive than either trilogy on its own. Machete order aims to resolve that issue; YMMV on how successfully it does so, but I think it’s the best one can do to tighten up the narrative interplay between the to trilogies short of a full-on different cut.

The sequel trilogy throws a wrench in the whole thing, but VII and VIII work as a continuation of Luke’s story.
machete order exists to poo poo on the prequels. Anything else is incidental.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
machete order exists to poo poo on the prequels. Anything else is incidental.
I strongly disagree. I enjoy the prequels a great deal, and I love machete order. It recontextualizes the prequels in a way that makes them feel like an integrated part of a single, cohesive story, rather than their own side-story from the original trilogy.
 



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