The first iPad showed up at my gaming table two weeks ago, and I have to say -- it was pretty damn cool. It's got a bright, clean screen, and while my friend didn't have a native PDF viewer on the device, I can definitely see the potential there. Comic books looked beautiful, and surfing with it was a breeze. That said, not everyone's sold on the iPad, and I haven't seen any reviews of it up on RPG blogs -- if you've done one, please let me now in the comments.
That said, there are other tablet computers out there, and Chaos Crenade looks at one with A Tabletop Gamer Look: ASUS T91 Tablet PC. It's a netbook-style computer running Windows XP, and the reviewer takes a look at how well common RPG tooks like the D&D Character Builder and Hero Lab work on the device.
Wizards of the Coast has been busy with D&D 4E since the last time I did a reviews round up. The first of the big 2010 releases is Player's Handbook 3, which includes the bedrock psionics character classes needed to power the Dark Sun Campaign Setting being released in August. Critical Hits reviewed the book and liked what they saw. This lengthy review offers an overview (and thoughts on) all of the new races, classes and skill powers.
For decades Dungeons & Dragons players have wanted the ability to play as a dragon. Any DM worth his screen knew that it was a bad idea to give a player that kind of power. Dragons were monsters after all. So other alternatives were created. The half-dragon, the dragon blooded, even the sorcerer class was set up so you could tie yourself to a draconic ancestor. So when 4th edition rolled around the developers decided to make a draconic race. What they came up with was the Dragonborn.
WotC’s supplement,Primal Power: Options for Barbarians, Druids, Shamans, and Wardens presents expanded choices for each of the classes that draw power from the Primal Power Source.
It offers new possibilities for these classes in the same way that the books Divine Power, Arcane Power, andMartial Powerdid for their respective classes.
When I ran my 4E D&D playtest campaign, I decided to make it larger than life. That meant going planer. The churning unpredictability of the planes, the potential for exotic locations, the alienness of its inhabitants calls to my imagination. The Plane Below: Secrets of the Elemental Chaos, which details 4E's churning elemental wastes, is just my cup of tea. Or it would be if it had retained more of the 3E cosmology. As is it's more like a cup of chia; worth a sip, but not as satisfying as I'd hoped.
Arthur Dent beverage metaphors aside, The Plane Below is a 159-page source book that builds on the foundation laid down by last year's The Manual of the Planes. The Elemental Chaos is 4th Edition's catch-all planar setting for D&D's traditional elemental planes, as well as the Nine Hells, the Abyss, and the rest of the rest of the D&D cosmology that isn't the Astral Plane or Ravenloft.
I’m one of those who loves the printed word. PDFs are handy, but when it comes right down serious reading, I want my books and magaines culled from dead trees. As such, I was happy to see a review copy of Dragon Magazine Annual.
Although my D&D 4E playtest campaign has long since given way to an ongoing Star Wars game, I like to dabble in 4E. Not enough, however, to warrant getting a regular D&D Insider subscription, although I’ll happily admit that if they were still publishing Dragon and Dungeon in print, I’d still be a subscriber.
The Annual is for gamers like me, gamers who might read the occasional free article on Insider, but have been content to live offline for the most part. It also serves as a “best of” compilation, gathering together the most memorable and useful articles from the last year’s worth of articles.
In November I had the chance to do something I’ve never done before: play Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition. Technically that’s not true – I’ve played D&D 4E plenty of times as a Dungeon Master, including my gaming group’s playtest campaign. But I’ve never sat at the table as a D&D 4E player.
Quilleron is my second-ever character for D&D 4E (Field General Zhoran, a dwarven warlord, was my first) and the first I was able to run as a player. He was designed as a giant-killer for my gaming group's Revenge of the Giants campaign. You can read more about my thoughts on returning to D&D 4E in "D&D 4th Edition: A Player's Persepctive".
My gaming group recently returned to D&D 4th Edition with a megashot of the Revenge of the Giants supermodule. I talk about our experiences with Wizards of the Coast's homage to the original 1st Edition Against the Giants tournament modules on Episode #121 of The Tome Podcast.
I'm joined by Quinn Murphy of the excellent At Will 4E blog and regular Tome host Jeff Greiner. Check out the podcast.
Giants stalk the land, threatening one of the few flickering lights of civilization. Someone needs to deal with the threat ... and it turns out that's us.
My gaming group is returning to Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition with a megashot of Revenge of the Giants, the new super module from Wizards of the Coast. I received a review copy of the book in October, and at the time I knew it was a perfect chance for my group to experiment with 4th Edition again.
We played 4th Edition back in Summer 2008, but decided we didn't want to convert our regular campaign to the new game. A few of us have continued to dabble in 4E however, and there's been interest in getting another game together.
Revenge of the Giants is that game and we're going to carve off a huge chunk of it with an eight-hour marathon post-Thanksgiving session.
We’re heading back.