In December we were again thrilled to receive a couple of shout outs from Wizards of the Coast in their December News and Reviews. On December 1, they linked to our article on The Art of D&D and on December 11, they linked to our Holiday Shopping Skill Challenge. Thanks to these referrals from Wizards, Dungeon’s Master has seen a steady traffic increase throughout November and December as we welcome a lot of new readers. We’ve collected all of the articles we published throughout the previous month and present them in one place for your convenience. So if you’re new to Dungeon’s Master or you just happened to miss a couple of days while you were away over the holidays, here are the highlights from December.
Design a Holiday Dungeon Contest
Throughout November and December we ran our first contest called Design a Holiday Dungeon. Although it was a very difficult decision, we eventually selected Krangel’s Workshop (PDF) submitted by Corwin Riddle as the winner of our Design a Holiday Dungeon Contents. Thank you to everyone who submitted entries.
Skills and Skill Challenges
- Always Train Your Worst Skills – We explain why it’s better to be average in a whole bunch of skills rather than really, really good in a just a few skills.
- Skill Challenges In A Vacuum – We look at how to improve skill challenges by rewarding players after every successful check.
- Skill Challenge: Crafting Items – Since there is no Craft skill in 4e D&D we present a skill challenge for how to make items using your 4e skills.
- Skill Challenge: Holiday Shopping – Sometimes real life situations can best be described in D&D terms, as was the case with this skill challenge.
- What Do PCs Do For Fun? – We’ve provided some suggested ways in which PCs can unwind and have some fun between adventures.
- Why You Want a Controller In Your Party – When 4e D&D first came out nobody seemed to give Controllers the respect they deserve. Now that more gamers are getting into paragon and epic tiers of play that attitude is changing. Find out why.
- Playing Against Type – Don’t choose a race/class combination merely because the numbers are good; try choosing an interesting race/class combo that presents interesting role-playing opportunities.
- Tiers Of Play: Epic – We’ve played some epic level dungeon delves and share our thoughts and findings with you.
- 10 Ways To Get Your D&D Fix Over The Holidays – Christmas may be over but this list still provides excellent ways to get your D&D fix.
- New Moon Through the Eyes of a Hardcore D&D Fan – The novel New Moon isn’t just for teenage girls.
- Dungeons & Dragons Is More Than A Role-Playing Game – Players and DMs learn a variety of real-life skills and end up with a wide range of knowledge by playing D&D.
- Open Game Table Vol. 2: Call for Nominations – Our friends over at The Core Mechanic need your help deciding what to include in the upcoming Open Gaming Table Vol. 2.
Greatest Hits 2009
During the last two weeks of 2009 the Dungeon’s Master team took some time off. While we were enjoying our Christmas vacation we ran some of our greatest hits from 2009. These were a combination of articles that generated a lot of discussion, got a lot of traffic and were just pieces that we liked. If you missed any of these the first time around or just last month when we ran them a second time (with new introductions) here again are some of our greatest hits from 2009.
- Greatest Hits 2009: Are All Gamers Fat? (Jun 12)
- Greatest Hits 2009: Avoiding Death (Feb 11, Feb 24)
- Greatest Hits 2009: D&D Lego (Jul 29)
- Greatest Hits 2009: I’m Your Cleric, Not Your Bitch! (Apr 14)
- Greatest Hits 2009: Keith Baker Answers 13 Questions (Sep 2)
- Greatest Hits 2009: Psionics Suck! (Jul 10)
- Greatest Hits 2009: Should Players Suffer When PCs Die? (Nov 13)
- Greatest Hits 2009: Taking The Dungeon Out Of Dungeons & Dragons (Apr 7)
- Greatest Hits 2009: The Gaming Jerk (Aug 7)
- Greatest Hits 2009: The Hangover: The Movie That Begs to Be a D&D Adventure (Jul 8 )
- Greatest Hits 2009: The Necromancer (Oct 6)
- Greatest Hits 2009: What’s a +1 Sword? (Jul 13)
A Look Ahead
Here’s what’s in store for January 2010. As the Dungeon Master team shifts gears in our own D&D campaign so to will we be shifting gears in the type of articles you’ll find in early 2010. Ameron is taking over the reigns as full-time DM and will be sharing some of his tips, tricks and sample encounters for paragon level play. We’ll still spend time focusing on skills and skill challenges in January. We’re particularly excited about our new approach to handling skill challenges; especially those designed for PCs with exceptional skill numbers. We’ll share more of our recommended reading list, including reviews of the latest Eberron and Forgotten Realms novels. And on February 1, Dungeon’s Master celebrates its 1-year anniversary. As always we welcome your feedback and suggestions. If there’s a particular aspect of D&D that you’d like to see us cover, send us an email or leave us a comment. Our goal is to make D&D better for everyone.