- 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons Skill Challenges have been a big topic in the RPG blogging metamind this week. The first article I came across was over at Newbie DM ("Running Skill Challenges is a Challenge Itself"), and later in the week I quickly clicked into another, inovative approach to covering this topic. At-Will's "Skill Challenge Request Line" is simply genius. Everyone is encouraged to make requests and a whole series new skill challenges will be detailed to meet those requests. The growing list of skill challenges at At-Will can be found here. Finally, there was a post over at Nuketown that discussed the possibility of introducing the skill challenge mechanic into Star Wars: Saga Edition. Check it all out!
- Languages in D&D has been a topic that has come up in several places this week. Jeff's Gameblog wrote "Languages in AD&D" and "Making Sense of Alignment Languages", and about the same time Sword & Shield posted "Do you hear me? Do you care?". Noisms, the author of Monsters and Manuals, then broke into new territory with "Languages; or, why we shouldn't be able to speak Dwarven" - a very interesting read, especially given his background as a professional translator.
- Sandbox campaigns and "Borderlands style" play was another topic that seemed to surface in my wanderings. Back in September, Mike Mearls wrote about "Borderlands Style Adventures" and how this underused adventure mechanic can be applied to a wide variety of settings assuming you gave enough time. It just interesting to me becuase Keep on the Borderlands, a what... 25+ year old classic adventure, came up again at Mike Mearls blog and then again in a review by PatrickWR at RPG DieHard ("Review: Keep on the Borderlands"). There is a great post about this style of campaign / adventure over at Bat in the Attic ("Sandbox Fantasy") and there is a collection of articles on this topic kept in my Google Notebook too (under the Adventure Design section I think... i need to reorganize it).
- And finally we come to Clerics in D&D. I had been planning on starting a series about the evolution of clerics through the editions, which I finally started this week, but RPGCentric beat me to it ("Clerics have lost their faith in D&D"). My own series is along the same vein, albeit a bit more drawn out, and Part 1, 2, and 3 have been completed - covering clerics from OD&D through 2E AD&D. In the next couple days I'll be completing the series on clerics in 3E, 3.5E, and 4E and then a wrap up that will look exclusively at clerics in the 30+ year history of Dragon magazine.
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