Don't just read about D&D's latest news and announcements--listen to them as well! And where better to find inside information than from the very halls of Wizards of the Coast? Presenting Episode 11: Drow! In this podcast, hosts Dave Noonan and Mike Mearls debate the drow, for all their strengths and foibles. Plus, Chris Thomasson and Rodney Thompson discuss their current campaigns.
00:30: The first half of the show takes a look at the drow, covered in such recent releases as May’s Drow of the Underdark. By the way, the definitive answer on pronunciation of the race’s name? Drow rhymes with “cow”, not with “throw”. The drow (rhymes with throw) is a fictitious race we’re considering for next year’s April Fool’s, which are armed with hand crossbows (that’s bows, rhymes with cows).
01:15: Polarizing? What say you on the subject: Drow—love ‘em or leave ‘em?
Speaking of which, here are the results from last month's polls:
As a player, which would you rather receive?
magic items: 78.9%
the equivalent gold: 21.1%
What is your preferred campaign style (to play or to run)?
02:15: A drow goddess of good drow? It’s true: Eilistraee (pg 240 Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting), aka The Dark Maiden, Lady of the Dance, is the deity of good drow and those of that race that wish to be able to live on the surface in peace.
02:30: The D-series was a 1st edition series of adventure modules which included D1: Descent into the Depths of the Earth, D2: Shrine of the Kuo-Toa, and D3: Vault of the Drow.
05:00: Darkness in 3.5 now creates a shadowy illumination, giving creatures within concealment (20% miss chance). In 3.0, pure darkness was created, which simply cancelled out darkvision, normal lights and lower level light spells.
06:00: Ah, the rip-off of drow gear! For a complete answer, take a look back at Ask Wizards from 11/08/2006. Drow gear, when taken to the surface, was quickly destroyed by sunlight—a property carried over in Underdark’s “optional” drowcraft property of weapons and armor.
08:00: Pricing magic items has been covered in Andy Collins’ Design & Development article: Magic Item Compendium 3. To quote, “Pricing magic items is as much art as science. Don’t treat the DMG formulas as if they’re going to give you “the answer.” Except for a limited number of items, these at best provide you a starting point.”
09:20: City of the Spider Queen introduced the amulets of dark blessing, providing drow much needed 24 additional hit points.
10:00: The backstory of the drow can be found in the Drow of the Forgotten Realms section of their wiki article. For more details, take a look at Lost Empires of Faerun.
14:00: Babyface, in professional wrestling terms, is essentially the hero to the heel’s villain. Such as babyface Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat taking on heel Randy "Macho Man Savage" in Wrestlemania III.
17:50: Chris Thomasson discussed dungeons in Podcast Episode 9, and -- as mentioned in the April Fool’s Easter Eggs -- his character became the inspiration for DDM’s Goliath Cleric of Kovaki (the ram lord).
20:40: While Chris invented a goliath-themed prestige class similar to Tome of Battle’s Ruby Knights Vindicator, he has admittedly yet to come up with a formal name for this PrC. If you have a suggestion, feel free to send it in to firstname.lastname@example.org.
21:00: Shazam (or Captain Marvel, depending who you ask) is an acronym for the Wisdom of Solomon; the Strength of Hercules, the Stamina of Atlas, the Power of Zeus, the Courage of Achilles, and the Speed of Mercury.
22:00: The Vasharan can be found in the Book of Vile Darkness, pg. 12. “Vasharans do not understand such concepts as mercy, kindness, or love—not even toward each other."
23:30: The spell revenance (Spell Compendium pg. 175) functions as raise dead, but only for 1 minute/level. Revivify can also be found, on pg. 176.
26:30: Grafts can be found on pg. 207 of the Fiend Folio; a notable example can be found in Dungeon Magazine 105’s version of Warduke, who makes use of a fearsome eye graft to gain see invisibility and a gaze attack effects.
29:30: Send topic requests to: email@example.com.
30:00: Rodney Thompson served as designer for the recent Star Wars Roleplaying Game: Saga Edition. A tutorial for the duskblade, from the PHB II, can be found in the Characters with Class: Master of Sword and Spell article.
37:20: Spellwarp sniper (pg. 64 Complete Scoundrel) is the prestige class mentioned, which allows manipulation of ray spells with such abilities as spellwarp and sudden raystrike -- and also appeared in the Characters with prestige article: Death from the Shadows.
40:00: Send your questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Again, just send in your question, your name (and how to pronounce it), and your hometown.
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About the Podcast Hosts
David Noonan is a designer/developer for Wizards of the Coast. His credits include co-designing Dungeon Master's Guide II, Heroes of Battle, and numerous products for the Eberron campaign setting. He lives in Washington state with his wife, son, and daughter.
Mike Mearls is the dark hope of chaotic evil: young, handsome, well endowed in abilities and aptitudes, thoroughly wicked, depraved, and capricious. Whomever harms Mearls had better not brag of it in the presence of one who will inform the Demoness Lolth!
Evil to the core, Mearls is cunning, and if the situation appears in doubt, he will use bribery and honeyed words to sway the balance in his favor. He is not at all adverse to gaining new recruits of any sort, and will gladly accept adventurers into the ranks, but he will test and try them continually. Those who arouse suspicion will be quietly murdered in their sleep; those with too much promise will be likewise dealt with, for Mearls wants no potential usurpers or threats to his domination.