Author Archives: Ryu

This article was first broadcast in Episode Two Hundred and Twenty Three on 31st August 2022. Note: This article was adapted from an episode script, and so there may be parts that don’t flow well when read, because they were initially designed for broadcast. Genasi are one of the more esoteric playable races in D&D, which is saying something given that giant frog and tortoise people are options. Like a number of the more unusual racial options in D&D, the genasi came about once planar travel, and Planescape in particular, became a major fixture of D&D. Possibly due to the gender makeup of TSR in the late 80s and early 90s, it was apparently assumed that if people were able to find exotic beings from other planes, one of the first orders of business would be to…how shall I put this…test biological compatibility. In 2nd edition, if a human got…

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This article was first broadcast in Episode Two Hundred Thirteen on 8th June 2022. Note: This article was adapted from an episode script, and so there may be parts that don’t flow well when read, because they were initially designed for broadcast.     Giants have been around in D&D since the very beginning. A major reason for that has to do with the origins of the game. It’s oversimplifying a bit, but Gary Gygax’s original intent wasn’t to create a whole new system with sweeping lore and intricate settings; he just wanted to be able to have his tabletop armies fight Orcs and trolls instead of just other human armies, and he didn’t want to wait five years for Warhammer to come out.  Starting with that premise, Gygax didn’t start inventing a whole bunch of unique fantasy creatures to throw up against his and his friend’s armies. They just took the…

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This article was first broadcast in Episode Two Hundred and Twelfth on 25th May 2022. Note: This article was adapted from an episode script, and so there may be parts that don’t flow well when read, because they were initially designed for broadcast. Recent revelations about Spelljammer have said that the phlogiston is no more. Where the highly volatile mystery substance used to fill the space between local star systems, apparently that void is now going to be filled by the Astral Sea, or at least something called the Astral Sea. A lot of Planescape fans probably raised their eyebrows and worried a bit when they heard that. Because until we get some more details, it’s possible the 5th edition Astral Sea is going to be very different from before. Like most things about the D&D cosmology, the astral sea was something that sort of “appeared” over time. Several resources and…

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This article was first broadcast in Episode Two Hundred and Eleven on 18th May 2022. Note: This article was adapted from an episode script, and so there may be parts that don’t flow well when read, because they were initially designed for broadcast. Like flumphs, dragonborn, and a completely useless system for ranking monsters, tieflings are another thing that’s only become a staple of D&D in recent incarnations, despite being present in D&D as a whole for a long time prior. The tieflings ironically got their name and their start because of the fallout over the “Satanic Panic” of the 1980s. For those who aren’t aware or need a refresher, there were several incidents, most notably the suicide of an adolescent, that had negatively linked Dungeons and Dragons first edition with satanism and demon or devil worship in the United States during the 1980s. As a result, when TSR began…

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