Persuasion Check: Unearthed Arcana – Giant Soul Sorcerer

June is looking to be BIG thanks to the new Giant Soul Sorcerer subclass in this month’s Unearthed Arcana! A quick glance got me excited since I firmly believe that the Sorcerer has some of the best potential for a wide array of subclasses.

As I keep stating, I always love seeing new player options from our friends at Wizards of the Coast. For one, it gives us a chance to see some of the more outlandish or cool ideas they have brewing in their heads. And secondly, it makes it easier for me to evaluate and provide options outside of the currently published materials for my players, rather than scrounging up ideas on the wild, wild, web. But enough about why I love Unearthed Arcana in general, let’s take a dive into the Giant Soul subclass! Read More

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[Premodern] Staples: White

In our last Premodern article, we discussed my picks for what Black cards will impact the up-and-coming format.  This time, we take a look at Black’s enemy color, White, and see how White plans to stand toe-to-toe with the best Black cards printed between 1995-2003.

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25 Lawless City Adventure Seeds

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Picture Credit: Hugo Puzzuoli

A twist on a previous set, today’s Adventure Seeds take place in a Lawless City! Gone are the guards and the only law is don’t get caught!

As usual, I had a blast challenging myself with another setting. In many ways the seeds I came up with felt familiar; city settings give you a sense of comfort, after all. All adventures within do not need to involve combat so much as roleplay and mysteries. However, that changes a bit when you throw out the laws. They can and will involve combat and subterfuge where diplomacy and lending aid once were.

Plenty of assumptions this time, so buckle up:

  • The city is “ruled” by a Bandit King/Queen, who are simply the most powerful figure in the city that can keep their detractors at bay,
  • The only law is don’t get caught; if you do you’re at the mercy of those who also have no laws to follow,
  • Children are, more or less, a bit free of being victims. That’s not to say they’re not stolen from, but they are generally spared any grimmer crimes,
  • There are guards, most of which serve the Bandit King, but some who directly serve other lesser people of power,
  • And no one is turned away at the gate; all coin is welcome here.

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[Premodern] Staples: Black (and a brief history of Premodern)

With the rising popularity of Pauper and Old School 93/94, it appears as though we have hit an age where Magic players are no longer willing to settle for the DCI-sanctioned Standard, Modern, or Eternal (Vintage & Legacy) formats.  Players such as myself are eager to use cards they have never seen before, remember fondly from their childhoods, or just take a break from competition.  With that being said, the new Premodern format looks promising.  However, I noticed that not a lot of decks are packing Black.  Therefore, today I take a look at the mono black cards that I think could impact the format.

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Persuasion Check: Unearthed Arcana – Centaurs and Minotaurs

We’re back with May’s Unearthed Arcana taking a look at playable races for Centaurs and Minotaurs! Minotaurs previously appeared in 2015, but they’re back and revised alongside their fellow ‘taur.

Even as a DM, I love seeing new player options, especially races, come out. I was relieved initially when the Monster Manual did not have any statistics for using monsters as races, meaning I had good reason to keep my players to the options in the Player’s Handbook. But it has been a few years and I’m ready for some monstrous characters, so bring on ‘taurs! Read More

Evaluating the Competitive Viability of Creatures

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Unless you have been living under a rock, you have either heard about or directly experienced the cost-efficiency of The Scarab God.  I mean, this guy does everything At just five mana, this beatstick provides indirect damage, deck manipulation, a durable 5/5 body, and an activated ability that can quickly turn the tide of the game.  However, not every new creature released is as much of a no-brainer as The Scarab God.  In this article, I describe how I personally render my initial judgment on new creatures when considering whether they will make an impact on Standard or any other format.

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25 Seafaring Adventure Seeds

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Picture Credit: RadoJavor

By popular demand, we have some great Seafaring Adventure Seeds today! We set sail across the oceans and seas into a world of nautical novelty!

I had a lot of fun coming up with these, but some are more closely aligned to adventure or encounter ideas that simple seeds. Sometimes the ideas I had needed to be a bit more developed to break the normal mold since there is so many basic types of encounters that start, and potentially end, in the ocean.

I have no assumptions this time around other than what is stated in the individual seeds themselves, but I do urge you to frame them however you want! For instance, if a seed mentions witnessing a ship do something or hearing a rumor, by all means make the ship that something happened to your players’ ship and catch them off guard! Vice versa for things you want to be rumors that say they happened to the players’ ship!

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A Handful of Magic Items 7

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Picture Credit: Seraph777

We’ve been cooking up some more magic items for you with some of the feedback in mind from our last few sets. Today we have a blade that likes to slay alike foes, a shield that can become a tactical wall, and a staff that is beholden to a certain, infamous monster.

Kinslayer (any melee weapon, requires attunement)
This weapon has a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls. Each time this weapon hits a creature (including the same creature repeatedly), it gains +1 to damage to all subsequent attacks against creatures of the same type (sub-type for humanoids), up to +4 (including the base +1). This effect ends if you target a creature of another type with this weapon, or after 10 minutes of inaction.

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Persuasion Check: Unearthed Arcana – Order Domain

We’re officially a quarter of the way through the year, and what better way to celebrate that completely arbitrary achievement than with a new cleric domain? The Order Domain puts the lawful in lawful good/neutral/evil.

On the face this looks like an exciting new domain that keeps a nice cleric flavor, but seemingly presents them in a similar light to their martial counterpart, the paladin. Also, when I took a look back in January’s Unearthed Arcana, I was asked to give a little more analysis, so I’ve tried to throw some in there without breaking out the calculator. Let me know how you like this or if there’s something else I could be doing to give these Persuasion Checks advantage! Read More

[Brawl][Budget] Angrath, the Flame-Chained and his Rakdos Pirates ($18 Paper/4 MTGO Tix)

On March 22, 2018, Senior Magic Designer Gavin Verhey published the rules to the new Brawl format in an article titled “Join the Brawl.”  Gavin describes Brawl as a casual format that has the benefit of being an entry point to the larger Standard Constructed format.  Now, I disagree with Gavin that Brawl should be used as an entry point into Standard.  That’s what the Challenger Decks are for.  Instead, I see Brawl as a way to reuse “draft chaff” (the cards you get to keep after a draft) and otherwise noncompetitive Standard cards.  I also see Brawl as a way for a new Commander player to learn to play Magic without being thrown into twenty-five years worth of broken Commander cards.  That’s enough of an introduction, let’s check out the deck!

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Monster Manual A-Z: Dragon Turtle

Monster Manual A-Z is a series of quick looks at each and every monster presented in the Monster Manual for Dungeons & Dragons 5e. New monsters go up every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday in alphabetical order, touching on lore, mechanics, and ways to use them in your campaign. To search for all Monster Manual A-Z articles, search MMAZ in the search bar as we’ve excluded them from our Roleplaying Games tag to keep things tidy.

Dragon Turtle

Dragon Turtle
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Faithless Looting: Pawn Shop on “Hobby Street” in Boston

Earlier this week, I was hastily walking through the streets of beautiful historic Downtown Boston in the Springtime.  It was about fifty degrees and twenty mile per hour wind gusts were blasting my face.  The street that I was walking on had a steep incline and my shins were aching.  I had just finished grocery shopping and, with a paper bag filled with frozen foods in each hand, I felt like my arms were going to fall off.  My head was down to avoid eye contact or conversation with other less-than-friendly pedestrians.  While catching my breath, I looked up and saw this:

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