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Short Rest

Getting Defensive: Armor Class

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twenty-Five on 23rd May 2018. Lennon: Ahh, there you are! What’re you doing down here in the basement? Ryu:  Well, I’ve been flicking through Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes, and I’ve gotta be honest I’m not sure I fancy our chances going up against those… things! Demons and devils, demogorgons and drow, it’s all gotten a little more dangerous. Lennon: So you’re hiding down here with a blanket? Ryu: What? NO! I just-- Ostron: Ryu?! Ryu?! Lennon: I found her, she’s down here Ostron: Ahh, there you are! What’re you doing down here in the basement? Ryu:  As I was just about to say to Lennon, I was just going through...

Bounded Accuracy

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twenty-Four on 16th May 2018. Ryu: Lennon? Why did we just get a delivery of 500 yards of parachute cord? Lennon: Oh did that show up? Great! Yeah it’s a research project I’m doing about bounded accuracy. Ryu: Okay...

Listen, Good People

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twenty-Three on 9th May 2018. Ryu: Okay, no more weddings. Lennon: I didn't realize you were ordained. Ryu: No, I mean I added an arranged marriage plot to my campaign and my characters started fighting about how the "good" aligned characters would react. Ostron: That can get tricky. Ryu: I didn't even know how to rule it myself. I just play my characters, I usually don't think too much about alignment. Well, unless I'm wearing the hat… Lennon: No Hat! Ostron: It's okay, don't need the hat. I've got a quick primer on being good here. Depending on the crowd of players at the table, the announcement that...

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You Are What You Eat (or Drink)

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twenty-Two on 2nd May 2018. Boldan the Dragonslayer strode into the tavern; known throughout the land for his many heroic deeds, he had no shortage of tables offered to him.  The tavern owner hurried over and asked, “Good master, whatever we can offer is yours! What would wish to dine on tonight?” Graciously nodding to his host, he replied, “Uh, I don’t know.  Food, I guess? I should probably drink something too…” D&D is a game about heroes, villains, adventure, monsters, and magic.  There can be so much epicness happening in a game it’s easy to...

Probability

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twenty-One on 25th April 2018. Ryu: Are you sure about this? Lennon: I think we have to Ryu: I'm getting the hat Lennon: No, no… Let’s just let him have this one. Ryu: You're REALLY sure? I mean, last time some people didn't wake up for days. Lennon: Well, we can dress it up as a public service. Insomnia is a real issue for a lot of people. Now, breathe in… and out… ok, go get em! Ryu: Okay… Hey Ostron? What'cha been working on in the Gnomish Workshop?     With all of this talk of Mordenkainen’s Mayhem, and the Mike Mearls...

Alternate Rewards

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twenty on 18th April 2018. Ryu: So yeah, that last time the Killer DM killed Ostron pretty much wiped us out. The Cleric upped his rates Lennon: I told Ostron we’d have some gold for him because of the whole kidney thing Ryu: Don’t worry, I’ve got it covered.       Not all characters are played in the same way. That’s sort of a given unless the same person is controlling all of them, but we’re mostly talking about how characters deal with their bank accounts. While some characters will be able to stockpile money, looking for the chance...

Five Room Dungeon Design

This article was first broadcast in Episode Nineteen on 11th April 2018. Ryu: Hey Ostron! Good to see you back in one piece! Whatchya doing there? Ostron: Oh, trying to come up with something for my next session. I know the players are likely to make it to a dungeon, but I have no inspiration for layout, monsters, or even what's lighting the walls. Ryu: Well, you could always use the Five Room Dungeon technique Ostron: Isn’t five rooms a little restrictive? Lennon: Not if you do it right.     See, whilst you may look at modules, even the shorter ones like those presented in Tales from...

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Switching Characters

This article was first broadcast in Episode Seventeen on 28th March 2018. Ostron: One of my players used the sending stone, they want to change characters AGAIN. It's something like the fourth time and I have no idea what to do here. Lennon: What are they now? Ostron: Gnome Cleric Lennon: And they're switching to… Ostron: Goliath Barbarian Ryu: That's...

To Add A Dragon

This article was first broadcast in Episode Sixteen on 21st March 2018. Raerae: So were you guys debating dragons this week? Ryu: No Raerae: Why not? Ryu: Because there isn't a debate. Ostron: No, the point is that we're asking if you should add dragons to a campaign or not. Ryu: I don't understand the question. Ostron: I'm not sure how to rewrite that Ryu: Look, here, guys, why don't we just read over this paper I wrote up on dragons instead, huh? Dragons are probably the most iconic creatures in the entire D&D mythos. I mean, they're the second "D" in the name; it's hard to argue they...

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Are You Evil?

This article was first broadcast in Episode Fifteen on 14th March 2018. Lennon: Really? You just GAVE her the hat? Ostron: Look, it's not like The Killer DM causes chaos or anything. She's Lawful Evil, that's manageable. Killer DM: Do I hear the sounds of overconfidence? Lennon: Not from me Ostron: We were just saying you're a good source of information for players that want to play evil characters Killer DM: Oh my goodness yes. There are soooo many posers out there that think they're SO evil and still go to puddles when there are a bunch of kittens around. Pull up a chair, people.       At some...

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Healing Without Healing

This article was first broadcast in Episode Fourteen on 7th March 2018. Lennon: Ok, so I’ve been thinking about our Ixalan adventure… well, mis-adventure… and I think I’ve gotten to the bottom of it. We need a cleric. Ryu: No we don’t Ostron: Right -- a paladin would probably be better. They can absorb more damage. Ryu: Wrong again Lennon: Ok, well what do you suggest? Ryu:  Well, I find that depends on how you look at it.   The easiest way to guarantee blind panic in most players is to drain the group’s healer of spell slots or hit points. Some players refuse to engage in a...

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Skill Ineptitude: It’s Good to Be Bad (At Something)

This article was first broadcast in Episode Thirteen on 28th February 2018. “The battle had been hard-fought, but the necromancer’s tower now lay in ruins.  On the morrow they would return to the queen to inform her the threat to her nation was ended, but tonight, they rested.  Brother Elmont knew his companions had fared worse than he, and prepared their simple evening meal without being asked.  It had taken the party twelve hours to win through and cast down the necromancer. ...

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Party Composition

This article was first broadcast in Episode Twelve on 21st February 2018. Lennon: That was close! Ryu: Next time we go to Ixalan, we should probably balance our party better. Ostron: Now we're safe backstage, let’s take a Short Rest...

Plane Shift: Ixalan

This article was first broadcast in Episode Eleven on 14th February 2018. Ryu: Hey Len, everything alright? Lennon: Ehhhh, kinda. It’s Valentine’s day and I’ve still not managed to find anything for my wife. Even with my ukulele my Performance check would be a critical failure what with still recovering from the Ryuflu, and just in case the Ryuflu turns out to be lycanthropy, moonlit walks on the beach are probably best avoided...

The Gith

This article was first broadcast in Episode Ten on 7th February 2018. Lennon: Are you crazy!? Ostron: Will you calm down and listen! Ryu: Why is everyone yelling in here!? Lennon: He has a silver sword Ostron: It's a sword that LOOKS silver, it's not one of THOSE silver swords. Do I look like an idiot? Lennon: Well you work on this show, don’t you? Ryu: What am I missing here? Ostron: I'm guessing a lot of history about the Githyanki     Whenever psionics comes up in D&D, three races are always brought up with it: the Mindflayers, Githyanki, and Githzerai. We're going to discuss the latter two. Fortunately the...

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Weather in D&D Part 3: Advanced Weather

This article was first broadcast in Episode Nine on 20th January 2018. Raerae: Huh, so this is what it looks like back here Lennon: You mean you’ve never been backstage? Raerae: Well I’m not usually on stage to go behind it Ostron: Good point Raerae: Oooh, is this where Ryu keeps that hat? Ostron: Well, not quite, this is where we always go after the news for a Short Rest Raerae: Gotchya. So, what do you do when you take a Short Rest? Lennon: Oh, mainly we try and keep Ryu out of the Gnomish Workshop. Although the last couple of weeks we’ve been talking about the weather...

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Weather in D&D Part 1: Weather as an Encounter

This article was first broadcast in Episode Seven on 10th January 2018. Ostron: It’s raining bears and frogs out there Lennon: Okay, the expression is cats and dogs and plate armor isn’t good in rain- Ostron: I’m going to stop you right there - look out the window. Weather: everybody talks about it, but nobody does anything about it. To be fair, most people can’t do anything about it...

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Royal Titles

This article was first broadcast in Episode Six on 3rd January 2018. Lennon: Why does the break room wall have dry erase lines everywhere with some pictures of Duke Ellington, Elvis, and Christopher Lee from Star Wars? Ostron: Oh, yeah, we wanted to add some stuff to our campaigns and have it be authentic. Royalty! Kings, Princes, Dukes. I mean an evil baron- Ryu: Or Baroness! Ostron: -right trying to take over the kingdom is classic! But we wanted it to be authentic and we’re not used to the whole royalty, lines of succession thing. Lennon: Ryu, Ostron, I’m British. We’ve got this. Here’s your...

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The Twelve Days of Bonuses, Part 1

This article was first broadcast in Episode Four on 20th December, 2017. Lennon: Hey Ryu, what’ve you got there? Ryu: Oh this? It’s just a magic item I found in the Gnomish Workshop Lennon: Looks like a santa hat. Hmm, let’s see the item card: Hat of the Killer DM. When equipping this hat, make a constitution saving throw (DC15). On a failed save, the wearer becomes the Killer DM for the remainder of the segment. You may repeat the saving throw once per round. This sounds cursed. Ryu: I’m gonna put it on Lennon: That doesn’t seem wise---ok, you did it anyway. Ok, make...

Getting familiar with Familiars

This article was first broadcast in Episode Two on 6th December, 2017. “You did well in your scouting, Sir Fluffykins, though I could have used less detail about that mouse’s nest you found,” Aristobulus grinned at his familiar. “Meow,” replied Sir Fluffykins wittily, because he was a cat and only had 3 intelligence. 5e’s Find Familiar is a useful spell, allowing a spellcaster to summon a magical animal companion to assist them in their adventuring, as well as letting the character partake in a fine storytelling and magical tradition going back millennia.  However, while many literary familiars are intelligent and capable of speech,...

Aarakocran Druids

This article was first broadcast in Episode One on November 29th, 2017. Lennon: So, you’ll have to forgive me. As a Brit, we don’t have “Thanksgiving” over here, so I’m not really familiar with it. When “Thanksgiving” comes up, what do you think of? Ryu: Druids! Ostron: Aarakocra! Lennon: I’ve got to be honest, that doesn’t seem quite right, but who am I to argue? I guess we’ll talk about Aarakocran Druids then...