21 September–5 October 2021: Dungeons & Dragons’ Next “Edition”

Cover art from D&D 3.5's Player's Handbook. Settle an argument between Amy & James: is it gorgeous or hideous?

We’re back from a short break, with some very big news: D&D is getting a big revision, coming in 2024 — and we’re pretty fascinated by the way in which they are approaching it. In even bigger news: board game giant, Asmodee is reportedly for sale. And we catch up on the Kickstarters that launched while we were away.

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D&D’s Next Edition?

A new Dungeons & Dragons is on its way. At D&D’s “Future of D&D Panel“, the company teased the “next evolution of Dungeons & Dragons”, coming in 2024 — just in time for the game’s 50th anniversary. The release will feature new versions of the game’s core books, but will be completely backwards compatible with 5th edition.

We can expect to see some of the changes to the game foreshadowed in upcoming books: changes to stat blocks, for instance, will be visible in the newly announced Mordenkainen Presents: Monsters of the Multiverse. This new book will be released in January next year, as a stand-alone, but also in a boxed set with Xanathar’s Guide and Tasha’s Cauldron.

This announcement has been incredibly cautious, and not without reason. The announcement and release of 4th edition is well remembered by (sorry, James) older gamers like us as something of a disaster.

As far as I have seen, nowhere has Wizards used the phrase “new edition” to describe the coming release. It sounds a bit like the 3.5 release: a significant revision, but not a new game. The promise of backwards compatibility is certainly important.

Wizards certainly seems keen to be communicative with this one: the 5.5 release will be influenced by player surveys that we’ve already seen, and we’re told to expect more. I think it’s no surprise that the company has given 3 years notice on this one: they’re keen not to repeat old mistakes by blindsiding the fanbase. — Amy

Paizo Controversies

Dicebreaker details the latest controversies surrounding Pathfinder publisher, Paizo. The company has faced criticism after the departure of two members of the customer service team — one of whom was fired. The incident has kicked up a number of complaints about company culture. Paizo is now seeking anonymous feedback from employees and is looking to hire an HR manager.

Industry News

Tabletop Gaming giant, Asmodee is for sale — for an incredible $2 billion.

Shipping woes continue. The aforementioned Monsters of the Multiverse will miss its planned Christmas release date. Some large retailers have gone so far as to charter their own ships.

Brazilian designer, Cezar Capacle looks at the difficulties facing game creators from the global south.

Events

Steam is gearing up for its 2nd Digital Tabletop Fest, celebrating tabletop RPGs and their digital adaptations.

The Origin Awards will not be announced at this year’s Origins Game Fair, but instead will be delayed to next year.

New & Upcoming

Free League Publishing announces an RPG adaptation of Blade Runner.

One of Wizards of the Coast’s digital studios is working on a G.I. Joe video game.

Bundles & Deals

A bundle of games on Itch is raising funds for relief in Afghanistan.

Bundle of Holding is offering a bundle of Cthulhu Hack books, a bundle of third-party 5e books, and a bundle of Mutant Crawl Classics books.

Crowdfunding

Noteworthy New Projects

The Lazy DM’s Companion: A book of DMing guidelines and generators, by Mike Shea (Return of the Lazy Dungeon Master, Fantastic Adventures: Ruins of the Grendleroot for 5e, Fantastic Lairs: Boss Battles & Final Encounters for 5e D&D). So far this project has raised $187,000 from 5,200 backers. Ends October 29th

Shea is very well-regarded for his low-effort DMing advice: I have liked his previous work. — Amy

Into the Odd Remastered: A rules-light, industrial-weird RPG, by Chris McDowall (Electric Bastionland RPG). So far this project has raised £80,000 ($108,000) from 3,000 backers. Ends October 21th

Chris McDowell’s Electric Bastionland has been a quiet hit. This new edition of Into the Odd comes from Free League, with graphic design by Johan Nohr of Mörk Borg fame. Combined, this should help the game reach a significantly wider audience than it would otherwise get. This is worth keeping an eye on. — James

Micro Dungeons Halloween Edition for DnD: Ready-to-play mini D&D adventures for $1, by Guillermo Buenfil (Adaptable Encounters for D&D 5E, Micro Dungeons for DnD). So far this project has raised MX$78,000 ($3,800 from 2,400 backers. Ends October 6th

The Practical Guide to Becoming a Great GM: A book of GMing advice from hit gaming YouTuber, Guy Schlanders (Bounty Hunter — A TTRPG, Epic Battlemaps, A complete Guide to Nautical Campaigns). So far this project has raised £100,000 ($135,000) from 2,300 backers. Ends October 26th

Secrets of the Drow Trilogy: A collection of Drow-themed adventures for 5e, by Midnight Tower (A One-shot Mystery Adventure Inspired by H.P. Lovecraft!, Rise of the Ice Dragons Trilogy: Three RPG Adventures for 5e, A Mystery Adventure Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe for 5e). So far this project has raised £36,000 ($49,000) from 1,200 backers. Ends October 14th

Closing Soon

Quest-O-Nomicon is a compendium of low-level quests for 5e. So far this project has raised $483,000 from 5,900 backers. Ends October 9th

5e

The Canon Fartherall Player’s Guide for 5e and Pathfinder 1e: A guide to Zombie Orpheus’ Fartherall setting for 5e and Pathfinder 1e, by Michael Mars Gaming (Icebound: Polar Environments for Pathfinder 1e) — October 7th

Mag of Holding — Gothic Horror: A gothic horror-themed rules compendium for 5e, by Paddy Finn (Mag of Holding for 5e, Aizendore’s Vault of Tragic Treasure — Magic Items for 5e, Mag of Holding — Pirates and Seafaring Book for 5e) — October 10th

Deadly Dungeons: Quests for D&D 5E: A collection of dungeon adventures for 5e, by Laura MCL (Assassin Adventures: Quests for 5E, Treasure Hunts: Quests for 5E) — October 13th

Demiverse: A Campaign Setting for 5e & Those Who Wander: Loosely connected fantasy demiplanes are all that’s left of a fractured multiverse, by Adam Hancock (Supers & Sorcery, Those Who Wander) — October 21st

Dungeon Drop-Ins: A collection of drop-in dungeon rooms for 5e, Pathfinder & other games, by Status Effect Games LLC (One Night at the Inn: A DnD and TTRPG Guide) — October 23rd

The Complete Illustrated Book of Abjuration: An illustrated book of abjuration spells, by Phil Stone (The Complete Illustrated Book of Enchantment, The Complete Illustrated Book of Transmutation, The Complete Illustrated Book of Illusion) — October 23rd

Glorious Taverns: A compendium of taverns, their denizens, and their drinks, by Critit.co.uk (The ‘Spirit Of’ Dice Range, Animal Companion Miniatures, ‘Spirit Of’ the Arctic Dice Range) — October 24th

Fearsome Foes and Where to Fight Them: A collection of monsters, settings, and music for 5e, by Joshua Greer — November 11th

OSR & Retro

Chaotic Neutral by Mark Sable and Chris Anderson: A comic book and adventure module inspired by old school games, by Mark Sable (Dracula: Son of the Dragon) — October 29th

Horror

Clever Girl: A solo or two-player game about survival in a failed dinosaur theme park, by Matthew Gravelyn (Mall Kids — RPG about teens and malls, Articles of the Arcana: A Troika Tarot Guide, Tapestry: Mint Tin RPG) — October 14th

I really like the concept of this and it’s interesting to see the Wretched & Alone SRD (developed by Matt Sanders, based on Chris Bissette’s card-and-Jenga RPG, The Wretched) steadily growing in popularity. I have a pile of them that I need to play! — James

Apocalyptic Record: A setting supplement and sourcebook for Werewolf 20th Anniversary, by Onyx Path — October 21st

We haven’t heard much about Hunters Entertainment’s new edition of Werewolf since it was announced last year. This book, which appears to cap off the decades of metaplot developed for the older, 20th Anniversary edition (much like Becket’s Guide to the Jyhad did for Vampire, as fans may remember). Presumably this will be the capstone of the W20 line before the new game appears. — James

Superheroes

Legends of the MetaVerse: A superhero tabletop RPG based on D&D 5e, by Good Brother Studios — October 14th

Sci-Fi/Cyberpunk

Mecha & Monsters: Evolved — A TinyD6 RPG: A new edition of the rules-light Mecha and Kaiju TinyD6 roleplaying game, by Gallant Knight Games (The Hero’s Journey 2e, Tiny Cthulhu, Tiny Taverns) — October 13th

Generic

Apotheosis TTRPG: A highly customizable generic RPG, by Ian Tassin — October 7th

Historical

Flabbergasted: A comedic tabletop RPG set in the roaring 20s, by The Wanderer’s Tome — October 19th

Sports

Fight With Spirit: A sports anime-inspired RPG, by Storybrewers Roleplaying (Alas for the Awful Sea: Myth, Mystery & Crime in 1800s UK, Good Society: A Jane Austen Roleplaying Game, Littlebox RPGs: two complete story games in two little boxes) — October 26th

This update was made possible by Keenan Collett, Robert Carnel, and the rest of our Patreon supporters.

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