After the Dragon War: Danar and Tentineh

Danar lived on after the end of the Dragon War, doing many good deeds. He was 63 but as a draconic descendant he had not aged. He assisted with the construction of the defenses for the Orbs of Dragonkind before returning to Sheerzen to rule his reclaimed kingdom. Danar married more than once, becoming a polygamous king. He ruled well for twenty years, establishing a just society for his people as he had before in the swamp that bears his name. The same system of succession for his progeny. There could be only one heir. All others must be sterilized or executed.

After twenty years of rule, Tentineh came to Danar. The old wizard was entering his slumber and asked Danar to join him. Danar got his affairs in order then entered suspended animation with the other Heroes of the Dragon War. He would only be reawakened by the destruction of the Red Dragon Orb. Continue reading

Main difference of 4E D&D from 3.5

I’ve started DMing a little bit of 4E D&D.

4E is commonly reviled by fans of other editions as not being “real D&D.” There are good reasons for that. 4E changed a lot of things about how the previous editions worked and 5th edition was largely a reversion of those changes.

One of the biggest changes was making every class function in essentially the same way.

In 3.5 and previous editions, every class had subsystems in the rules for how their specific abilities were used and how those abilities progressed as your character got stronger. Those subsystems varied from extremely simple (fighters and rogues) to extremely complex (wizards and clerics).

That variation in complexity came along with a variation in power. At higher levels fighters are still doing pretty much the same thing and aren’t nearly as useful as they used to be at low levels. Meanwhile wizards can now summon a protective warrior that’s about as strong as his fighter friend and still have plenty of magic left over for whatever they want to do.

The problem is usually referred to as “linear fighters and quadratic wizards.” Continue reading

Moving on From 3.5 Edition

4E D&D

Now that my long-running Xorian Wars campaign has concluded, what next?

I’ve been playing D&D 3.5 edition for more than a decade. I like the system, but I feel like its taken me as far as it can go.

If D&D were like any other product I’d say, “It’s time for an upgrade!” but pen-and-paper roleplaying games aren’t really like that.

Choosing a roleplaying system has more to do with personal preference than something being newer and having a larger number slapped on the cover. Continue reading

After the Dragon War: Shratalanda

Shratalanda was a mystery to the people of Cimmeria. No one knew how old Shratalanda was at the end of the Dragon War. She had emerged from nowhere to orchestrate the rebellion against the dragons’ rule. She was part of no community and had no family. Many suspected she was a god, one of the Fates, sent to walk the Earth and ensure that the proper events occurred. Others thought her simply an elf with the natural talent needed for psionic magic. Continue reading

The Greatest Showman Movie Review

greatest-showman-poster-lrg.jpg

Hugh Jackman stars in The Greatest Showman as P.T. Barnum, the man who starts the circus now known as the Ringling Bros Barnum and Bailey Circus.

As Barnum sets up his circus he must contend with bigotry and family drama that threatens to upset his career and his marriage.

The plot of the movie is fairly predictable for a musical and even more so given the source material. It comes as no surprise that Barnum’s circus is successful.

The weak plot leaves the enjoyment of the movie not in the story but in the storytelling. How good are the songs, the dances, the costumes, and the acting?

Simple answer, marvelous! I loved The Greatest Showman! Continue reading

After the Dragon War: Toffoun and Amalgami

Toffoun was 77 and still in the prime of his life when the Dragon War ended. Toffoun’s people called for him to take up the crown of the High King of the Dwarves; however, Toffoun remember his duty and gave his support to Cogard, the rightful heir of Karnafaust. Toffoun’s accomplishments and loyalty earned him a council seat in the new Dwarven High King’s court. Continue reading

Xorian Wars has Finished!

My 8 year long campaign has finished and the conclusion is now uploaded to YouTube!

 

It’s pretty long. Thirteen hours of me jabbing with my friends about Dungeons and Dragons. I’ve noticed that people who do this professionally make recap episodes that are about 10 minutes long with summaries and only the best bits of the action. That’s something I might do if a lot of viewers request them.

I’m proud of the visual setup I created for this. The globe picture seems like it would work for any genre of RPG and I have other camera borders ready to go for other genres.

I had some issues with the audio, but they were easy to fix. I’m aware of them for the future.

Skype was also annoying in how the video locations kept changing when people left the call or turned off their cameras. I’ve started looking at alternatives that might have a better interface for capturing the images with OBS. Current list includes: Discord, Hangouts, Jitsi, VSee, and Viber.

Streaming was definitely popular with the members of the D&D group. We’ll keep doing it, if only for ourselves to rewatch.

The Final Sessions

I am approaching the final session of the longest D&D campaign I’ve ever run.

The players have made their way through all the challenges I constructed for them. The only thing left to do is confront the final villain and defeat him.

I’m reminded of something I wrote in high school, that people are attracted to stories that excite them regardless of how real those stories are. The world, characters, and stories I’ve built through Dungeons and Dragons aren’t real, but the outcome is as important to me as the outcome of other things in my life.

Continue reading

After the Dragon War: The Dungeons

The Heroes of the Dragon War pooled their resources to erect defenses around the Orbs of Dragonkind. They decided that five of the Orbs would be defended in the same location by a nearly impassable obstacle. The other five Orbs would be hidden separately within dungeons that the Heroes would build and protect. Continue reading