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Interview: Mike Mearls Talks About D&D Next

D&D Next (courtesy of Wizards of the Coast)

Wolfgang: D&D Next provides a lot of support for “theatre of the mind,” also known as running your game without minis. I’ve found this extremely enjoyable in online games using Google Hangouts. Is that form of online play a design goal?

Mike: I’m not sure if it started as a design goal, but since many of our playtests took place using Hangouts it helped evolve it that way. When you don’t have minis and grids to represent things, it forces you to make sure that your rules don’t require them. So I think a good way to think of it is that if playing via Hangout works, then the game should also work fine if you and your players want to sit on couches in your TV room without a table, or while driving to GenCon, or wherever.

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Monsters and More: An Interview with Adam Daigle

Adam DaigleThis week sees the launch of the Midgard Bestiary, which the talented and monster-savvy Adam Daigle has sweated blood and tears over for us! We took some more time out of Adam’s schedule to ask him some questions about monsters and more, and he was gracious enough to throw some very tasty bones our way in the form of answers. Come help us pick these particular bones clean by reading this interview with him!

So, monsters. All right-thinking people love them. Why do you love them?

I think I fell into loving them, actually. Designing monsters was one of the first freelance gigs I was given, so I ran with it. As you know, I pitched and got to write some monsters for a few Open Design projects and got a few into Monster Monday blog posts. I have always enjoyed monsters, both in real world folklore and in the game. Before I even played the game properly, my cousin and I would constantly look through the old Monster Manuals, and even before that, as a kid, I would always check out the big illustrated books about animals. I’ve always had a thing for critters—the creepier the better.

What’s your favorite creature type, and why?

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Kobold Quarterly #21 Now Available

KQ 21 coverGods and demons are a vital part of the swords and sorcery genre – as are their followers. Conan battles evil priests while swearing, “By Crom!” Elric surges into combat promising blood and souls for his divine patron Arioch. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser often find themselves pawns in the schemes of Nehwon’s conniving gods.

Kobold Quarterly #21 delves into the roles played by the divine in your campaign, featuring David “Zeb” Cook on using mystery cults in your game, Tim and Eileen Connors on soul-shredding clerical dilemmas, Marc Radle’s new shaman base class for Pathfinder RPG, and an ecology of the succubus with new feats, powers and traits for D&D.

KQ #21 also features official Pathfinder Society content, robber knights and vile wizards, new Zobeck and Midgard articles, and alchemists, druids, illusions, and seers for the AGE System – and a sultry pinup cover by Kieran Yanner!

The complete contents are after the jump:

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Kobold Quarterly #20 Now Available

Cover Art for KQ20Here in the Old Margreve, adorable woodland creatures are running hither and yon…FOR THEIR LIVES. That’s because Kobold Quarterly issue #20 is out today and this time the focus is on archers! With an all-new elven archer base class for Pathfinder RPG, a shadow fey hunting party on the prowl, and new arrows carrying acid, fog and razor filaments, the debate over whether it’s Wabbit Season or Duck Season just became much more energetic.

KQ #20 features Jeff Grubb on the lost elves of Midgard, a Q&A with Journeys to the West lead designer Christina Stiles and a new Zobeck adventure.

There’s also vile Derro ooze magic, new planar allies, AGE system specialties, 4e racial utility powers for gnomes, tieflings and minotaurs, and much more! Here’s the complete contents, after the jump:

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The First Board Game I Fell In Love With: Andrew Looney

To celebrate the release of the Kobold Guide to Board Game Design, we asked some of the world’s top board game designers to tell us about the first game they fell in love with, and whether it still holds up for them today. Today we hear from Andrew Looney.Andrew Looney author photo

The first board game I ever fell in love with was Sorry! I have fond memories of playing Sorry (and other board games) with my mom as she sorted laundry. For her, such distractions were a great way of keeping me busy while she also got a few chores done.

Much as I loved Sorry growing up, I hadn’t played it in such a long time that I wasn’t even clear on all the rules anymore. So, we dusted off my old copy, and I fell in love all over again.

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