No surprise to anyone by now: Wizards of the Coast has started another round of Christmas layoffs. This year, so far, Rob Heinsoo (D&D 4e Lead Designer), Logan Bonner (Adventurer's Vault), Chris Sims (4e Monster Manual and Dungeon Master's Guide) and Stephen Radney-McFarland have been cut.

If there's one immutable law all GMs know, it’s that players love loot. Wizards love that uber wand of disintegration. Fighters want the +12 hackmaster. Street samurai want that move by wire 4. How do you give them what they want without losing game balance? Simple. Present it like an Evil GM.

Some four and a half years ago, I had the pleasure of reviewing The Gamers, the progenitor of -- and a sort of prequel/sidequel to -- The Gamers: Dorkness Rising. Despite what one might think, the two films are quite different in style, and I think they need to stand alone for the purposes of a review. Thus, while I will refer to the original in a few places, you won't see me saying anything like "Dorkness Rising is a better movie" or "The original was maybe just a tad funnier." I think both statements are true, but I also think they're beside the point.

Almost any GM can use a hand now and then. Some could use expert ideas as a springboard for the next adventure or campaign, while others (like myself) may be so busy and/or lazy and could use ready-made adventure or maybe a campaign. This March saw the birth of a new project intended to help DMs run a D&D 3rd Ed. campaign in the form of Dungeon-a-Day, by one Monte Cook. More on this multi-media, progressive, subscription based endeavor by an industry veteran in the interview below.

After several conflicting reports over the past few days, it now appears that Dave Arneson, co-creator of the original Dungeons & Dragons fantasy game, died Tuesday night at age 61.

From the front page of RPGNow.com: "Wizards of the Coast has instructed us to suspend all sales and downloads of Wizards of the Coast titles. Unfortunately, this includes offering download access to previously purchased Wizards of the Coast titles. We are in discussions with Wizards about their decision to change their approach to digital sales of their titles and will post more information as we have it. If you would like to let Wizards know your opinion on offering D&D titles for download, we suggest the D&D Message Boards found here (linked to gleemax)."

Well, it's finally out. This is the review you've been waiting for, the one you expected as well as the one you secretly hoped you'd never read. They've finally released D&D 5th Edition! Of course, a lot's changed about the publishing industry and the way we read books since 4e came out, so it's probably no surprise to see 5e now. In fact I wouldn't be surprised if we started getting new editions every few years, since it's all just a download away, on your computer, Kindle, console or iPhone.

Ed. You may also wish to read this article for further thoughts about 4th Edition.

On September 11, 2000, I posted on this site my first impressions of D&D 3rd Edition. Now, 8 years and change later, I thought I would post my impressions of D&D 4th Edition. These are not first impressions, however; these are based on my having played the game for several months now. They may very well incite a riot. Line forms on the right.

Ed. You may also wish to read this article for further thoughts about 4th Edition.

Many role-playing games include a system meant to model the characters' moral compasses or beliefs (or lack thereof). But is such a mechanic really necessary in a roleplaying game? If so, what's the best way to implement it? I'll share my opinions on what works and what doesn't in my own gaming experiences; you can (and should!) do the same in the comments.

According to a post by Randy Buehler, WOTC's Vice President of Digital Gaming, "Wizards of the Coast has made the decision to pull down its Gleemax social networking site in order to focus on other aspects of our digital initiatives, especially Magic Online and Dungeons & Dragons Insider. We continue to believe that fostering online community is an important part of taking care of our customers, but until we have our games up and running at a quality level we can be proud of, it will be the games themselves that receive the lion’s share of our attention and resources."

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