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Howling Tower

Howling Tower: Respect the Lowly Dungeon

It’s taken as gospel by many fantasy roleplayers that in the bad old days, all campaigns were about dungeons. Characters left the dungeon and returned to town only for healing and to replenish supplies. They might have a few random encounters between the town and the dungeon, but those were nothing more than distractions from …

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Howling Tower: Complexity and Option Fatigue

By now, everyone has had time to settle into the idea that D&D is getting another revision. I’m using this week to look at some D&D history, what revisions mean, and their effects. Today’s episode concerns complexity and option fatigue. Every revision of D&D has made the game more complex somehow. Complexity comes in different …

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Howling Tower: Racial Discrimination

No, not that type of discrimination. Fantasy roleplayers love their nonhuman races. What started in AD&D with elves, dwarves, halflings, half-elves, and half-orcs has mushroomed into dozens of player-character races in RPGs. Players seem to have an inexhaustible appetite for more races to dabble with. The choices have expanded from humans through the so-called demihumans …

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Howling Tower: Magic is Changing My World

Last week, we looked at three groups of spells that cause headaches for DMs. The first contains spells that let characters get from here to there without dealing with what’s in between. The second lets players see what’s over there, know what’s going on, or glimpse what lies ahead when that knowledge would otherwise be …

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