2022 has been a turning point for everyone Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) fans.
D&D Beyond has seen more free quality online content, the return of fan favorite settings (and more to be announced), and a return to the golden age of 3rd Edition with Wizards of the Coast, finally jumping on the token caravan (with mixed results)!
In addition, there is a distinct change in the direction of the series – inclusivity is the name of the game.
If fans are experience points, then D&D has definitely racked up enough points this year to level up.
But before we take a short break (or rather a long break) for the rest of the year, here’s what 2022 brings us.
Dragonlance: Shadow of the Dragon Queen
One of the two most anticipated books of this year, Dragonlance: Shadow of the Dragon Queen Brings a full-fledged adventure to D&D during the War of the Spear, complete with additional racing (soon to be “type”) options for the Kender, skills and subclasses that let you play as Dragonlance’s iconic mages and knights.
And if you get this book, you already know what Dragonlance is, so instead of bringing you a military adventure on Krynn, it foregoes the campaign book approach.
You can’t fight Takhisis in the book (after all, the quest is for characters up to level 11 and since Takhisis is Tiamat, it will be a CR30 enemy). But you’ll be fighting the second best villain in Dragonlance – but you’ll have to buy the book to find out who he is.
There is also an accompanying board game. Warriors of KrynnAllowing you to reenact military conflicts in the campaign if you want to elevate the combat aspect of the game.
Spelljammer: Adventures in Space
The other version expected this year is Spelljammer: Adventures in Space.
With two classic environments seeing a revival this year, D&D truly feels like it’s returning to its 3rd Edition golden age.
Since this setting has been revamped, Spelljammer gets three books in the box set – a campaign book, a monster book, and an adventure book. There are some differences from the old Spelljammer, but this is the best as it updates the incompatible rules and clarifies how space travel works with this new edition.
And if that Spelljammer content isn’t enough for you, you can always head to D&D Beyond for more monsters.
Horrible Compilations on D&D Beyond
They say the best things in life are free. That’s exactly what we got this year with more offers at D&D Beyond.
D&D Beyond (acquired by Wizards of the Coast in early 2022) started offering new monsters this year in the form of Monstrous Compendiums.
So far, D&D Beyond has released monsters for Spelljammer (Monstrous Compendium I) and Dragonlance (Monstrous Compendium II). With the Planescape setting coming soon next year, there’s a firm bet that we’ll be seeing another Monster Recap centered on monsters in that campaign setting.
While we regularly receive free content through the Unearthed Arcana, these are mostly for playtesting (and also black and white only).
Having full-color images and flashier rules through D&D Beyond has been one of the blessings of 2022.
Journeys in the Radiant Citadel
D&D also gained some levels in terms of exclusivity with its release. Journeys in the Radiant Citadel – an inclusive adventure anthology from creators to environments and monsters.
There is currently a shortage of non-European environments in D&D (but then, the nature and history of the game contribute more to such environments), and this is a gap that the book fills well. Now all we need is a full-fledged campaign setting set in a completely different culture.
It will be a test of the D&D ruleset to see how well it can support adventures from other countries. But I have full confidence that it can happen… because one of my players used the Monk rules (and subclasses from other books) to create an Ip Man-inspired character.
Other 2022 versions
Monsters of the Multiverse It was a nice rule update for monsters that were already released, but if you already own all the other books where monsters spawn for the first time, it feels unfair to have to pay for another book. thinks that the updated monsters might not last that long.
Call of the Netherdeep It was okay, but it was definitely overshadowed by the Spelljammer and Dragonlance versions, proving that the old campaign settings have a lot more appeal than the new ones.
Campaign Cases continue to receive mixed reviews. Maybe if it had been released earlier in D&D’s lifecycle it might have worked a bit – but it doesn’t fill a void that miniatures or cardboard tokens don’t.
As 2022 draws to a close, the question for D&D fans will likely be what will 2023 bring?
I’m not a Oracle (or Sorcerer for that matter, I guess I’m more of a Bard), but even Bards have Foresight on their enchantment lists, so let’s take a quick look at what awaits us in 2023 and what I am. to be excited about.
1. Planescape campaign setting
Different sizes. Beliefs that affect reality. And the enigmatic ruler of possibly the most cosmopolitan city in the multiverse – Sigil’s Lady of Pain. What’s not to like about Planescape?
The campaign landscape, which revolves around traversing different planes of the multiverse, is making a triumphant return next year.
We didn’t have an Airplanes Handbook in 5th Edition, so it’ll be fun to see planes in more detail in Planescape. Personally, I’m looking forward to Lady of Pain’s stat block – so players can fight it.
2. Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves movie
D&D campaigns are rarely 100 percent serious, but that was the tone of Dungeons & Dragons, the first D&D movie of the 2000s.
While he did manage to create a trilogy, the truth was that what we saw on screen didn’t quite match what was happening at the table.
So glad to see Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves embracing the stupidity of the tables, while showcasing the magic and wonder of living in a fantasy world with fire-breathing dragons, owl and bear hybrids, and giant gelatinous cubes.
3. The Book of Many Things
A resource book due out in 2023 will feature materials themed on Deck of Many Things, a magical set of playing cards that can randomly generate beneficial and sinister effects.
It sounds absolutely chaotic – which, to be honest, is something we haven’t seen much in D&D lately. Primus and his Modrons are fun (and we’ll probably see a bunch of them in Planescape, with the exception of any Great Modron Walks), so it’s time to let more of Chaos and hopefully Slaad reign.
When chaos finally took the stage Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone Playstation 2 game in which Ygorl, Lord of Entropy, is the final boss. It’s time to unleash the chaos to play again.
4. The Legend of Vox MachinaSeason 3
This isn’t really an official D&D release… but Critical Role uses the D&D ruleset for its campaign, and The Legend of Vox Machina is based on Critical Role.
So in a way, that’s the closest we’ve been to a D&D cartoon since the real D&D cartoon in 1983. There will be a D&D movie on screen and a D&D TV show on the air (okay, broadcast).
And if you are a fan of the 80s D&D cartoon – in 2023 there will also be a funny continuation of the series.
How was your one year with D&D?
Marcus Goh is a Singapore television screenwriter who has written for “Lion Mums”, “Crimewatch”, “Police & Thief” and “Incredible Tales”. He is also a Transformers enthusiast and an avid pop culture scholar. You can find him on social media as Optimarcus and on his site.
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