Eberron is a campaign setting for the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game, set in a period after a vast destructive war on the continent of Khorvaire. Eberron is designed to accommodate traditional D&D elements and races within a differently toned setting. Eberron was created by author and game designer Keith Baker as the winning entry for Wizards of the Coast's Fantasy Setting Search, a competition run in 2002 to establish a new setting for the D&D game. Eberron was chosen from more than 11,000 entries, was released with the publication of the Eberron Campaign Setting hardback book in June 2004; the campaign setting book was written by Baker, Bill Slavicsek, James Wyatt. In June 2005, the Eberron Campaign Setting book won the Origins Award for Best Roleplaying Game Supplement of 2004. A new version of the Campaign Setting was released in June and July 2009 to bring the setting to the new 4th edition of D&D. Released were a Player's Guide, a Campaign Guide, an Adventure. In February 2015, the online feature "Unearthed Arcana" provided an unofficial update for the 5th edition.
The official update for 5th edition, Wayfinder's Guide to Eberron, was released on July 23, 2018. One of the most obvious differences between Eberron and generic D&D is the level of magic. High-level magic, including resurrection spells, is less common than in most other settings. However, low-level magic is much more pervasive provided by the Dragonmarked houses. Many cities have magical lanterns throughout the streets. A continent-spanning magical "lightning rail" provides high speed transportation. Alignment is more muddied than in other official settings. Evil beings of traditionally good races and good beings of traditionally evil races are encouraged. However, the situation arises in the campaign world that oppositely aligned characters will side with each other if a threat looms over all, both good and evil characters will infiltrate each other's organizations for purposes of espionage. Religion is less clear-cut; the pantheon of Eberron does not make itself overtly known. The existence of divine magic is not evidence of the gods, as clerics who worship no deities but instead follow a path or belief system receive spells.
A cleric can actively work against their own church and continue to receive spells. As a result, religion is a matter of faith. Unlike in many other 3rd edition D&D settings, a cleric does not have to be within one step of his deity's or religion's alignment, is not restricted from casting certain spells because of alignment; the setting adds the artificer. Artificers are spellcasters focusing on magical item creation. Artificer infusions focus on temporarily imbuing objects with the desired effects. For example, instead of casting bull's strength on a character, an artificer would cast it upon a belt to create a short term magical Belt of Bull's Strength. Artificers have access to a pool of "craft points" which act as extra experience points for use in creating magical items without sacrificing level attainment; this pool is refilled when the artificer gains levels, or by draining power from an existing magical item. Eberron introduces a new non-player character class known as the magewright, an arcane caster who has a limited selection of low-level spells.
The existence of magewrights is part of the reason for the prevalence of low-level magic in Eberron. To try to create a pulp setting, Eberron uses "action points" that allow a player to add a six-sided die to the result of rolls made with a twenty-sided die. Characters receive; the Eberron Campaign Setting includes feats which grant additional uses for action points, such as allowing a player to add an eight-sided die instead of a six-sided die, or spending two action points to grant your character an additional move or standard action. Certain class features with uses per day, like a barbarian's rage ability, a cleric's turn/rebuke undead ability, or a druid's wild shape ability, can be used again by spending 2 action points; the final use for action points is to spend one to stabilize a dying character. The world of Eberron contains 7 continents; the setting takes place in Khorvaire, the most populated continent. Humans are the most populous race in Khorvaire, living in the area known as the Five Nations.
Southeast is the small continent of Aerenal, ruled by elves. Due south is the jungle continent of Xen ` drik, once ruled by an empire of giants, it is now wilderness, with some areas under tribal dominion of the drow. Further south of Xen'drik is Everice, a continent-sized sheet of ice covering several land masses. Frostfell is an unexplored land of ice in the north; the other two main continents are Argonnessen. The world of Eberron has twelve moons. Siberys, the Dragon Above, is the name given to the planetary rings. Khyber, the Dragon Below, is the name given to the underworld, is similar to the Underdark in many other settings. According to the creation story, the world wa
In the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game, the Dungeon Master is the game organizer and participant in charge of creating the details and challenges of a given adventure, while maintaining a realistic continuity of events. In effect, the Dungeon Master controls all aspects of the game, except for the actions of the player characters, describes to the players what they see and hear; the title was invented by TSR for the Dungeons & Dragons RPG, was introduced in the second supplement to the game rules. To avoid infringement of TSR's trademarks, to describe referees in role-playing genres other than sword and sorcery, other gaming companies use more generic terms, like Game Master, Game Operations Director, Referee or Storyteller; some use more esoteric titles related to the genre or style of the game, such as the "Keeper of Arcane Lore" from Call of Cthulhu and the "Hollyhock God" from Nobilis. The Dungeon Master assumes the role of the game master or referee and describes for other players what they perceive in this imaginary world, what effects their actions have.
That person is responsible for preparing each game session, must have a thorough understanding of the game rules. Since the inception of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons system in 1977, these rules have been contained in three hardbound books: the Player's Handbook, Dungeon Master's Guide, Monster Manual. Many other rulebooks exist as well; the DM is responsible for narrative flow, creating the scenario and setting in which the game takes place, maintaining the pace and providing dynamic feedback. In storyteller role, the DM is responsible for describing the events of the D&D game session and making rulings about game situations and effects based on the decisions made by the players; the DM can develop the adventure plot and setting in which these PCs participate or use a preexisting module. This is designed as a type of decision tree, followed by the players, a customized version can require several hours of preparation for each hour spent playing the game; the DM serves as the arbiter of the rules, both in teaching the rules to the players and in enforcing them.
The rules provide game mechanics for resolving the outcome of events, including how the player's characters interact with the game world. Although the rules exist to provide a balanced game environment, the DM is free to ignore the rules as needed; the DM can modify, remove, or create new rules in order to fit the rules to the current campaign. This includes situations where the rules do not apply, making it necessary to improvise. An example would be. To destroy the enemy, one PC soaks the statue in water, while the second uses his cone of cold breath to freeze the water. At this point, he appeals to the DM, saying the water expands as it shatters the statue; the DM might roll dice to decide. In the above example the probability roll might come up in favor of the players, the enemy would be shattered. Conversely, rules may have unintended consequences; the DM must draw the line between creative utilization of resources and exploit Regular gaming groups consist of a dungeon master and several players.
Some meet monthly, while others may only meet two or three times a year. A DM can run a single adventure otherwise unconnected with a campaign or game world. In this latter case there is no connected plot, the players can choose to play different characters in each session; the game session is known as an "adventure." It can be metaphorically described as an act within a stage play, where the players are the lead actors. In this analogy, the DM provides the stage, the scenery, the basic plot on which the improvisational script is built, as well as all the bit parts and supporting characters; each player generates a fictional player character to play within the adventure. A series of adventures compose a campaign, the player's characters will remain as elements of the continuing story arc unless they meet an unfortunate demise. Using the stage play analogy, a campaign would comprise all acts of said play. While each adventure may have its own story arc, they are parts of the larger story arc of the campaign.
The DM strings individual adventures into this campaign, in which the same PCs fight many different monsters and a few recurring villains. Such campaigns can last for decades, earning a great deal of loyalty from their players. There can be a common theme to a number of adventures that may in time become a campaign of sorts. Beyond the campaign is the "game world"; this vast construct is typical of many fantasy novels, such as J. R. R. Tolkien's Robert E. Howard's Conan saga. DMs may choose to run a game based on a published game world, with the maps and history in place. Alternately, the DM may create their own adventures. In the Faiths and Pantheons Dungeons & Dragons campaign, the Faerunian Overgod Ao answers to a superior entity, insinuated to be the "Dungeon Master"
Tracy Raye Hickman is an American fantasy author. He is best known for his work on the Dragonlance novels co-written with Margaret Weis, he is known for authoring role playing games while working for TSR and has cowritten novels with his wife Laura Hickman. Tracy Hickman was raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, he graduated from Provo High School in 1974. His major interests were drama and Air Force JROTC. In 1975, Hickman began two years of service as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he was posted to Hawaii for six months while awaiting visa approval, he went to Indonesia, where he served in Surabaya and the mountain city of Bandung until 1977. Within four months of his return to the United States he married his high school sweetheart, Laura Curtis. Laura was the inspiration for Lauralanthalasa Kanan. Hickman attended Brigham Young University. Hickman had many jobs before joining TSR in 1982, including working as a supermarket stockboy, a movie projectionist, a theater manager, a glass worker, a television assistant director and a drill press operator in a genealogy center.
Together and Laura wrote the original versions of the modules Rahasia and Pharaoh, publishing them privately. Pharaoh was published by DayStar West Media in 1980. In 1981, Tracy entered into a business arrangement to produce an arcade immersion game, but his associate disappeared, leaving the Hickmans with $30,000 in debts. Destitute and desperate, Tracy approached TSR with the modules Rahasia and Pharaoh, "literally so that I could buy shoes for my children". TSR wanted to hire Tracy as well. Tracy recalls, "They said. So, we made the move from Utah to Wisconsin, it was a terrifying experience. We had no money. My parents begged us not to venture into such foreign territory to pursue such a bizarre career. My father wrote that there was a secure job as a fry cook in Flagstaff, he pleaded with me to come take it."When Tracy and Laura Hickman came to TSR, they brought Pharaoh with them. It was published as the first part of TSR's Desert of Desolation series. I6 Ravenloft was written by Tracy and Laura Hickman.
Tracy Hickman wrote two supplements for TSR's Gangbusters role-playing game. Tracy and Laura Hickman's contributions to the D&D module portfolio are credited with initiating a fundamental shift in the RPG module design sensibilities, away from pure dungeon crawl and towards more "cerebral" adventures centered on intriguing plots; as he was traveling from Utah to Wisconsin to join TSR, Hickman conceived the idea for a setting to make dragons fearsome once more. At TSR he found other creators who were interested in his project, called "Project Overlord". Harold Johnson became the project's biggest promoter to upper management and convinced Hickman to expand his initial idea of a three-adventure trilogy. Soon after, TSR management announced its intention to develop his series of dragon-based role-playing adventures. Hickman's proposal resulted in the Dragonlance Chronicles, which led to his association with Margaret Weis. Jean Black, the managing editor of TSR's book department, picked Hickman and Weis to write Dragons of Autumn Twilight and the rest of the Dragonlance Chronicles series.
This was the first project TSR had undertaken that would include adult novels as well as games and other spin-off products. The original Dragonlance team was formed under Hickman's leadership. "Project Overlord" began as a novel and three modules, beginning in 1984 grew into the first Dragonlance trilogy and 15 companion modules. After Dragonlance Chronicles and Weis wrote the Dragonlance Legends trilogy, published in 1986. By 1987, the Dragonlance project had sold a half million adventure modules. Hickman left TSR in 1987. Together they wrote the Darksword trilogy and The Death Gate Cycle, collaborated on the Rose of the Prophet series. Weis and Hickman returned to TSR to write new fiction, although TSR turned their intended trilogy into a single book, Dragons of Summer Flame published in 1995. In spring 1996, Hickman's first two solo novels, Requiem of Stars and The Immortals, were published. Of The Immortals, a near-future cautionary tale about AIDS concentration camps in Utah, Hickman said: "I was driven to write that book.
I was able to say many things that I felt about and still do. It is my finest work."For the Starshield Project and Weis produced the Del Rey Books-published novels Sentinels and Nightsword, Hickman wrote a story for Dragon #250 called "Dedrak's Quest". Of this setting he said, "Starshield is a universe where a society of dragons can confront blaster-armed spacemen or wizards wielding magic staves with computer targeting", that the Starshield Project "grew out of my desire to share the creation process with all our fans. Many of the ideas and creations submitted by our citizens find their way into our novels. Everyone whose material is used gets credit and a chance to participate in profits from online sales of their adventures." According to Hickman, Starshield's ultimate purpose, his biggest dream, was to finance a permanent colony on Mars by the year 2010: "Whether we make it to Mars may not be as important as that we courageously tried." Readers were able to download both the first novel in the series, the Starshield roleplaying game from Hickman's website.
The Hickmans have been publishing game designs together for over twenty-five years including
Michael Mearls is a writer and designer of fantasy role-playing games and related fiction. He is the senior manager for the D&D design team, he led design for the 5th edition of the game. He worked on the Castle Ravenloft board game, various compendium books for 3rd and 4th edition D&D. Mearls is an alumnus of Dartmouth College. While at Dartmouth he was a member of Sigma Nu fraternity, became known for a satiric letter to the campus paper. Mearls wrote the adventure To Stand on Hallowed Ground/Swords Against Deception for Fiery Dragon Productions and the last product from Hogshead Publishing, a Warhammer adventure titled Fear the Worst that Hogshead released for free on the internet, he designed the game Iron Heroes for Malhavoc Press. In June 2005, Mearls was hired as a designer by Wizards of the Coast. At Wizards, he served as a lead developer for Dragons R&D working on the new 4th Edition. Between the "Orcus I" and "Orcus II" design phases for fourth edition, Mearls spliced the encounter-power mechanics of fourth edition into Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords, in process during development of the new edition.
Along with Andy Collins, David Noonan, Jesse Decker, Mearls was part of Rob Heinsoo's "Flywheel" design team for the fourth edition of Dungeons & Dragons, did the final concept work from May 2006 to September 2006, before the first books for the edition were written and playtested. After Heinsoo was laid off in 2009, Mearls stepped up to become the new D&D Lead Designer, he co-designed the Castle Ravenloft Board Game with Bill Slavicsek. Mearls was, together with Jeremy Crawford, lead designer for the fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Iron Heroes role playing game. "The Siege of Durgham's Folly," from Necromancer Games Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition Player's Handbook 2 Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition Monster Manual 3 Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition Keep on the Shadowfell, Adventure Book Playtest: New Hybrid and Multiclass Options, Dragon magazine #400 Dragon magazine #360 "Mike Mearls in the Pen & Paper RPG Database". Archived from the original on January 1, 2009
Robert J. Kuntz
Robert J. Kuntz is a game designer and author of role-playing game publications, he is best known for his contributions to various Dragons-related materials. Rob Kuntz was born September 1955 in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, his older brother is Terry Kuntz. Kuntz learned about miniature wargames at age 13 while skimming through an issue of Playboy. Kuntz began playing boardgames and play-by-mail games. Kuntz met Gary Gygax in 1968. In 1972, at age 17 Kuntz lived just a few blocks away from Gygax, got to play in the second-ever game of Dungeons & Dragons set in the World of Greyhawk, taking on the role of a fighter named Robilar. In 1973, Kuntz began running his own "Castle El Raja Key" campaign for Gygax, his campaign world was known as Kalibruhn. By 1974, the group of D&D players sometimes included over 20 people, so Kuntz became the co-dungeon-master, allowing each dungeon master to referee groups of only a dozen players. Kuntz brought in some elements of his campaign into Greyhawk, some levels of El Raja Key were incorporated directly into Castle Greyhawk.
After Gygax formed TSR in 1973 and was hired as the company's first full-time employee in mid-1975, he was soon followed by Rob Kuntz, Terry Kuntz, Tim Kask, Dave Megarry. Kuntz was TSR's sixth employee and was hired to do shipping. Kuntz co-authored Gods, Demi-Gods & Heroes with James M. Ward; that same year Kuntz, along with Gygax and Brad Stock, redeveloped Fritz Leiber and Harry Fischer’s personal wargame Lankhmar for publication by TSR. His short fiction story "The Quest for the Vermillion Volume" appeared in The Strategic Review Vol. II #1, was the first fiction published by TSR. Gygax credits Kuntz with "substantial ideas" in Expedition to the Barrier Peaks, run at Origins II in 1976. Kuntz served in the company in many positions, as designer, Director of Shipping, columnist for the Dragon Magazine, Convention Chairman and oversaw the AD&D line's licensing to Judges Guild for a short time period; as a D&D player, Kuntz developed the character of Robilar, the first character to complete Tomb of Horrors, among other exploits.
Because of Kuntz' imaginative play of this character, Gary Gygax awarded him co-Dungeon Master status for Gygax's original Greyhawk home campaign. As Gygax's friend and co-DM, Kuntz influenced the development of the Greyhawk milieu. For example, Gygax adapted Kuntz' dark god "Tharzduun" into the entity known today as Tharizdun; the names of the characters Tzunk and Bilarro are anagrams for his character's names. Kuntz has authored or co-authored several D&D publications, including the first edition of Deities & Demigods. Kuntz wanted to move to design and write a supplement based on his world of Kalibruhn. Over the next several years, Kuntz got married; when Gygax was expanding Greyhawk in the early 1980s, he brought in Eric Shook and Kuntz to help manage the new work. Kuntz designed a two-part tournament adventure that he had first run in college, called "The Maze of Xaene", set in Greyhawk's Great Kingdom, focusing on its king Ivid V. Kuntz designed the board game "King of the Tabletop" with Tom Wham for publication in Dragon #77.
Kuntz authored WG5: Mordenkainen's Fantastic Adventure, drawn from some of his early adventures. Kuntz continued to play and participated as a judge in Gygax's Greyhawk campaign until Gygax closed it down following his exit from TSR. Kuntz left TSR when Gygax was forced out, was protective of his IP, not having signed the rights to Kalibruhn over to anyone. Kuntz created his own company to hold and protect his game world and other creations, thus formed Creations Unlimited in 1986; the company produced a linked set of four adventures: The Maze of Zayene, Part 1: Prisoners of the Maze, The Maze of Zayene Part 2: Dimensions of Flight, The Maze of Zayene, Part 3: Tower Chaos and The Maze of Zayene, Part 4: The Eight Kings. The company's fifth and final publication was Garden of the Plantmaster. Kuntz contributed a pair of adventures to TSR's Fate of Istus, one of which included a lich named "Xaene the Accursed". By 1988, New Infinities Productions' "Fantasy Master" line was planned to start detailing the Castle and City of Greyhawk as Gygax and Kuntz had envisioned them.
However, the company fell apart when New Infinities' investors forced it into bankruptcy, none of this work went into print. On May 16, 2001, Necromancer Games announced a partnership with Rob Kuntz, as they had secured a license to revise his Creations Unlimited adventures for d20. Necromancer Games reprinted the first three Maze adventures in 2001, he wanted to work on his unpublished and incomplete City of Brass, but due to delays on their publication of the "Maze of Zayene" serie
Ernest Gary Gygax was an American game designer and author best known for co-creating the pioneering role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons with Dave Arneson. In the 1960s, Gygax created an organization of wargaming clubs and founded the Gen Con gaming convention. In 1971, he helped develop a miniatures wargame based on medieval warfare, he co-founded the company Tactical Studies Rules with childhood friend Don Kaye in 1973. The following year, he and Arneson created D&D, which expanded on Gygax's Chainmail and included elements of the fantasy stories he loved as a child. In the same year, he founded a magazine based around the new game. In 1977, Gygax began work on a more comprehensive version of the game, called Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. Gygax designed numerous manuals for the game system, as well as several pre-packaged adventures called "modules" that gave a person running a D&D game a rough script and ideas on how to run a particular gaming scenario. In 1983, he worked to license the D&D product line into the successful D&D cartoon series.
After leaving TSR in 1985 over issues with its new majority owner, Gygax continued to create role-playing game titles independently, beginning with the multi-genre Dangerous Journeys in 1992. He designed another gaming system called Lejendary Adventure, released in 1999. In 2005, Gygax was involved in the Castles & Crusades role-playing game, conceived as a hybrid between the third edition of D&D and the original version of the game conceived by Gygax. Gygax had six children. In 2004, Gygax suffered two strokes, narrowly avoided a subsequent heart attack, was diagnosed with an abdominal aortic aneurysm, died in March 2008. Gygax was born in Chicago, the son of Almina Emelie "Posey" and Swiss immigrant and former Chicago Symphony Orchestra violinist Ernst Gygax, he was named Ernest after his father, but he was known as Gary, the middle name given to him by his mother after the actor Gary Cooper. The family lived on Kenmore Avenue, close enough to Wrigley Field that he could hear the roar of the crowds watching the Chicago Cubs play.
At age 7, he became a member of a small group of friends who called themselves the "Kenmore Pirates". In 1946, after the Kenmore Pirates were involved in a fracas with another gang of boys, his father decided to move the family to Posey's family home in Lake Geneva, where Posey's family had settled in the early 19th century, where Gary's grandparents still lived. In this new setting, Gygax soon made friends with several of his peers, including Don Kaye and Mary Jo Powell. During his childhood and teen years, he developed a love of games and an appreciation for fantasy and science fiction literature; when he was five, he played card games such as pinochle and board games such as chess. At the age of ten, he and his friends played the sort of make-believe games that came to be called "live action role-playing games" with one of them acting as a referee, his father introduced him to science fantasy through pulp novels. His interest in games, combined with an appreciation of history led Gygax to begin playing miniature war games in 1953 with his best friend Don Kaye.
As teenagers Gygax and Kaye designed their own miniatures rules for toy soldiers with a large collection of 54 mm and 70 mm figures, where they used "ladyfingers" to simulate explosions. By the time he reached his teens, Gygax had a voracious appetite for pulp fiction authors such as Robert Howard, Jack Vance, Fritz Leiber, H. P. Lovecraft, Edgar Burroughs. Gygax was a mediocre student, in 1956, a few months after his father died, he dropped out of high school in his junior year, he joined the Marines, but after being diagnosed with walking pneumonia, he was given a medical discharge and moved back home with his mother. From there, he commuted to a job as a shipping clerk with Kemper Insurance Co. in Chicago. Shortly after his return, a friend introduced him to Avalon Hill's new wargame Gettysburg, Gygax was soon obsessed with the game playing marathon sessions once a week or more, it was from Avalon Hill that he ordered the first blank hex mapping sheets that were available, which he employed to design his own games.
At about the same time that he discovered Gettysburg, his mother re-introduced him to Mary Jo Powell, who had left Lake Geneva as a child and had just returned. Gygax was smitten with the beautiful young woman, after a short courtship, persuaded her to marry him, despite the fact that he was only 19; this caused some friction with his best friend Don Kaye, wooing Mary Jo, to the point where Kaye refused to attend Gygax's wedding. The young couple moved to Chicago where Gygax continued as a shipping clerk at Kemper Insurance, found Mary Jo a job there too. At Mary Jo's insistence, he attended night classes in junior college to earn his high school diploma, this time he excelled at his studies and made the college's Dean's List, he took anthropology classes at the University of Chicago. Gygax volunteered as a Republican precinct captain during the 1960 presidential election, observed many infractions by his Democratic counterpart; when he threatened to report these, he was offered a full scholarship to the University of Chicago if he kept silent.
Although Gygax did not report the infractions, since he felt nothing would be done, he did not accept the scholarship. Despite his commitments to his job, raising a family and his political volunteerism, Gygax continued to play wargames