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NewbieDM Review: Encounter Decks 3 by Inkwell Ideas

Newbie DM - Wed, 09/02/2015 - 13:20

During Gencon, I saw that my friend Mike, who runs SlyFlourish, picked up a deck of cards with what looked like an encounter and a map on them. These cards intrigued me, so I looked around and picked up a batch from Drivethru RPG. I picked up the bundle that includes the PDF of the deck, and the physical products. I’ll give me thoughts on this print-on-demand service at the end of the review, but first let me get to the cards…

Encounter Decks are basically a set of cards with a ready made map and plot ideas for a nights worth of gaming.

The deck includes 54 cards.

The deck includes 54 numbered cards, with one side showing a quick line or two about the hook of the adventure, suggestions for getting the PCs involved, encounter ideas, and suggestions on how to expand the story past the presented adventure. The other side includes a map suitable for the adventure. Here’s the map for card #25 “And the Children Shall Lead” from the picture above:

IMG_1943

As you can see, they cram a lot into a regular poker sized card, perhaps too much, but in essence you are getting a solid framework for a night’s worth of gaming in each card. A good GM might take these cards and be able to randomly pull one for that night’s one shot or side trek.

IMG_1944

Each card has either a Sword & Sorcery or a Science Fantasy theme, although it would probably be easy to re-skin these into any theme you need for your campaign. The plots range from dragon cults stealing livestock in the area, to stopping a brain connected to a super computer from taking over the city….

To me what’s most valuable about these cards are the hooks and encounters. The maps don’t do much for me because in order for them to be useful I’d need to blow them up larger, and they aren’t keyed anyway, so they can really just serve as inspiration for making my own maps or by hand or whatever. The fact that they managed to cram so much into a regular playing card is enough for me though, and I appreciate the effort, I just don’t know if I’ll get to use the maps. They even suggest using maps from other cards interchangeably, so they are playing fast and loose with them as it is.

There’s probably going to be some bit of prep time for the average GM that chooses to use these cards. I know that I’d probably take the time and flesh out the plots a bit and make them custom for my game, tie them in to my setting, etc, but some people may be content with a beer and pretzel “shuffle the cards” and lets see what comes up. For both those types of gamers, I think the product shines.

As far as Drivethru’s physical quality, I was really impressed. The cards are strong, not flimsy at all, rounded corners and have a gloss to them. They came packaged in a sturdy acrylic box with a removable lid, and I paid about $12 for the whole thing.

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Overall, I think these Encounter Decks are a solid product from Inkwell Ideas. I appreciate having 54 adventures ready to go, and even if the maps are perhaps a bit too small for the cards to use as intended, there are workarounds and ways to use them effectively, so I feel comfortable recommending the product.

If you would like to support NewbieDM.com, perhaps you’d consider visiting Amazon.com for your next rpg related purchase. Check out the following products:

World of Greyhawk AD&D Boxed Set

Menzoberranzan AD&D Boxed Set

Conquest of Nerath: A D&D Boardgame

Legend of Drizzt: A D&D Boardgame


GH-atlas

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Wed, 09/02/2015 - 07:14

b316728 has added a photo to the pool:

GH-atlas

Map of the Flanaess

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

DMs should fear these things from Fear the Walking Dead

dungeonmastering.com - Mon, 08/31/2015 - 01:52
Movies and television are always a fertile source for ideas to use in D&D.  Especially horror.  You’ve probably heard that … The post DMs should fear these things from Fear the...

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Aaron the Conjurer

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Sat, 08/29/2015 - 11:42

Jay Adan has added a photo to the pool:

Aaron the Conjurer

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Crashing markets in the D&D world

dungeonmastering.com - Fri, 08/28/2015 - 21:45
Recent financial craziness from China illustrates how interwoven economies are in a modern world. But how would this play out in … The post Crashing markets in the D&D world appeared first...

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Green Hag

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Fri, 08/28/2015 - 18:13

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Green Hag

I can hear the cackling from here. THE CACKLING! THE CACKLING!

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Ghost in the Graveyard

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Fri, 08/28/2015 - 18:13

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Ghost in the Graveyard

He is cursed to eternally haunt his own grave.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

The Green Man

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Thu, 08/27/2015 - 17:38

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

The Green Man

The Green Man has been a motif in artwork for so long that nobody knows where it really originated.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Crawling Hand

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Thu, 08/27/2015 - 17:38

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Crawling Hand

THey say that if one grabs you, it drags you back to the entrance.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Greenleaf Dryad

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Thu, 08/27/2015 - 17:38

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Greenleaf Dryad

Dryads are spirits of the trees, truly morea t home in the forest than among man.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

17 - Les Genatches - Di Undici Foglie © Dino Olivieri (low res)

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Mon, 08/24/2015 - 05:14

! / dino olivieri / www.onyrix.com has added a photo to the pool:

17 - Les Genatches - Di Undici Foglie © Dino Olivieri (low res)

this is an illustration of my next real book (not an ebook) "Di Undici Foglie".
Support me and pre-order at:
www.kapipal.com/di-undici-foglie


illustrazione tratta dal mio nuovo romanzo cartaceo (non un ebook) "Di Undici Foglie".
Contributi e pre-acquisti su:
www.kapipal.com/di-undici-foglie


Illustration from ebook "Di Undici Foglie" by Dino Olivieri
Luce - Di Undici Foglie © Dino Olivieri (low res)
all rights reserved.

More amazing stories on www.onyrix.com
More productions on www.umamu.org
Follow me at twitter.com/OlivieriDino
FB: www.facebook.com/dino.olivieri.35
Music: soundcloud.com/onyrix
Pins: www.pinterest.com/onyrix/
Videos: www.youtube.com/user/onyrix/

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

If Quentin Tarantino designed a D&D adventure

dungeonmastering.com - Sun, 08/23/2015 - 19:06
While we’re writing a piece on the Walking Dead spinoff, I thought I’d tie-in a few things cinema to D&D. … The post If Quentin Tarantino designed a D&D adventure appeared...

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Dungeons and Dragons Books – The Dungeon Master’s Guide

dungeonmastering.com - Sun, 08/23/2015 - 06:04
While there are numerous Dungeons and Dragons books available to those that want to be a DM, the best is the Dungeon’s Master’s Guide. This guide is often referred to as the “DMG” or the “DM’s...

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Dire Bat

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Sat, 08/22/2015 - 13:46

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Dire Bat

You want horror? Look no further.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Venger

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Fri, 08/21/2015 - 09:01

Alma de Boneca has added a photo to the pool:

Venger

"Fortes razões, fazem fortes ações." William Shakespeare - Alma de Boneca: 2149b.iluria.com❤

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Hieracosphinx

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Thu, 08/20/2015 - 18:30

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Hieracosphinx

An Egyptian heraldic creature, the hIeracosphinx has the head of a hawk, and is often associated with Horus.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

15 - Numphedoron - Di Undici Foglie © Dino Olivieri (low res).jpg

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Thu, 08/20/2015 - 05:17

! / dino olivieri / www.onyrix.com has added a photo to the pool:

15 - Numphedoron - Di Undici Foglie © Dino Olivieri (low res).jpg

this is an illustration of my next real book (not an ebook) "Di Undici Foglie".
Support me and pre-order at:
www.kapipal.com/di-undici-foglie


illustrazione tratta dal mio nuovo romanzo cartaceo (non un ebook) "Di Undici Foglie".
Contributi e pre-acquisti su:
www.kapipal.com/di-undici-foglie


Illustration from ebook "Di Undici Foglie" by Dino Olivieri
Luce - Di Undici Foglie © Dino Olivieri (low res)
all rights reserved.

More amazing stories on www.onyrix.com
More productions on www.umamu.org
Follow me at twitter.com/OlivieriDino
FB: www.facebook.com/dino.olivieri.35
Music: soundcloud.com/onyrix
Pins: www.pinterest.com/onyrix/
Videos: www.youtube.com/user/onyrix/

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons

Forgotten Realms and other D&D comics are available now as part of a Humble Bundle

A Hero Twice a Month - Thu, 08/20/2015 - 01:18

Sorry for the delay in posting, but things have been crazy at work recently.  However, considering how much time on this blog I have spent recapping the old DC/TSR Forgotten Realms comic book series, I would be remiss if I didn’t note that the entire series is now available as part of a Humble (Book) Bundle.

And it is not just the old Forgotten Realms series either.  The old Advanced Dungeons & Dragons series is also part of the bundle, not to mention several of the newer Dungeons & Dragons series produced by IDW.

This is a seriously good deal and at the time of this post it is still available for five days or so.  So if you have enjoyed my postings on the old comic series and want to check it out for yourself, now is the perfect time to do so.

The Journey As The Destination

dungeonmastering.com - Sat, 08/15/2015 - 00:39
Recently, the perfect storm of perspective had me experiencing, in short succession: A family driving trip 1,500 miles from Western, … The post The Journey As The Destination appeared first on...

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Mujina

Flickr Dungeons and Dragons Tag Feed - Thu, 08/13/2015 - 18:36

ridureyu1 has added a photo to the pool:

Mujina

Similar to the Tanuki, these shapeshifting badger yokai are known for their mischievous tricks.

Categories: Dungeons and Dragons
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