CoverI didn’t handle to check out this problem the week it was launched, as a result of the discharge bought pushed again, and let’s face it, even when it wasn’t, January was a multitude, so let’s simply name it a wash. In the mean time since we final checked out a difficulty of Arcadia, there was some . . . drama . . . involving WotC’s potential dealing with of the OGL (please have a look at some earlier weblog posts, I actually don’t wish to dive into it once more). In the course of that drama, MCDM introduced that Arcadia shall be ending this summer time, with their Patreon transitioning to a spot to share lore and details about upcoming tasks, and MCDM additionally introduced preliminary work on their very own RPG.

I’m  simply going to say, up entrance, that I’m going to overlook Arcadia, and I’m going to get pleasure from it whereas it’s nonetheless right here. I’ve been conditioned to understand random month-to-month recreation materials from the time I began shopping for Dragon Journal, and I respect the format that generally delivers articles I didn’t know I used to be on the lookout for.

However, with all of that stated, let’s get on with the present.


I used to be supplied with a assessment copy of Arcadia this month, however as has been the case for many of the run of the journal, I’ve bought my very own subscription to the Patreon as properly. I’ve not had the chance to make use of the fabric from this problem, however I’m properly acquainted with D&D 5e, each as a participant and as a DM.

Arcadia Challenge 24

Managing Editor Hannah Rose
Authors Willy Abeel, Carlos Cisco, Jessica Marcrum
Editors Scott Fitzgerald Grey, Sadie Lowry
Sensitivity Guide Basil Wright
Playtest Director Lars Bakke
Format Jen McCleary
Title Emblem Tom Schmuck
Accessibility Chris Hopper
Group Coordinator John Champion
Buyer Assist Bobby McBride
Particular Thanks Kelli Butler, Laura Hirsbrunner
Artwork Director Nick De Spain
Cowl Artist Grace Cheung
Inside Illustrators “We Journey Dragons”: Bruno Machado;  “Granny’s Concoctions”: Elisa Serio; “The Gilded Flight”: Grace Cheung, Nick De Spain, Zuzanna Wuzyk

The Challenge Inside Out

This month’s Arcadia is 47 pages, together with a title web page, a desk of contents, a letter from the editor, a sources web page with hyperlinks to the MCDM Security Toolkit and a prop from one of many articles, a web page of writer biographies, and a full web page OGL assertion.

The artwork within the journal is all the time spectacular, and that is no exception. I completely love the dragon struggle depicted on the quilt. The structure and paintings within the particular person article make me lament that I’m not going to see all of this on a month-to-month foundation by the top of the 12 months.

The Contents

This month’s problem has a common theme associated to dragons. The articles included are as follows:

  • We Journey Dragons (Mounts, Monsters)
  • Granny’s Concoctions (Magic Gadgets, Areas, NPCs)
  • The Gilded Flight (Organizations, NPCs, Monsters)

It’s additionally value noting that as a part of presenting the group in The Gilded Flight, there are 4 pages of reprinted stat blocks from earlier points, together with the elementals from Arcadia Challenge #2, and the Dragon Priest from Arcadia Challenge #20.

We Journey Dragons

I’ve been a fan of Willy Abeel’s “mounts” articles from the start. If, for some cause, you haven’t learn any of my first impressions of different articles on this sequence, the mount guidelines use the same mechanic to the summoning spells that seem in Tasha’s Cauldron of All the pieces. That signifies that they’ve a stat block, however issues like armor class and non permanent hit factors are assessed to the creature primarily based on the rider’s proficiency bonus or stage. Which means that a higher-level, extra expert rider is much less more likely to have their mount killed in a single blow if the PC rides it into battle.

In step with the theme of the difficulty, the entire mounts offered on this article are creatures of the dragon kind.

  • Cobblewyrm Mount
  • Draconfly Mount
  • Juvenile Inexperienced Dragon Mount
  • Shadogar Mount
  • Juvenile Wyvern Mount

Whereas the inexperienced dragon and wyvern could also be self-evident, the Cobblewyrm is a dragon that grows and shrinks primarily based on consuming rocks, after which expelling them as a part of their breath weapon assault. The Draconfly is an amalgam of dragonfly and dragon that’s attuned to the Ethereal airplane. The Shadogar is a variation on the shadow dragon theme, however much less excessive. This additionally creates a pleasant parallel, with the Draconfly feeling extra like a Feywild-inspired dragon, and the Shadogar as extra of a Shadowfell-style dragon.

Along with offering the mount stat blocks for the above creatures, this problem supplies some pointers for creating mounts from different creatures. This contains what armor class and hit level vary to shoot for, and what number of traits to adapt from the usual monster.

There’s a desk that measures the bottom hit factors of the creature, and interprets that to what number of non permanent hit factors to multiply in opposition to the rider’s stage. There’s a sidebar on Heroic Mount Variants, the place the mount receives precise elevated hit cube, however I just like the thematic idea that the non permanent hit factors are coming from the rider’s skill, quite than essentially altering the creature being ridden.

There’s a neat formatting trick that’s used on this part. The Juvenile Wyvern Mount seems within the part on creating your personal mounts, primarily based on the supplied pointers, and this part reveals the usual Wyvern stat block, with color-coded sections on what bought modified when translating the Wyvern to the Juvenile Wyvern Mount.

This problem additionally has two new “Omnimounts,” creatures launched in earlier mount-related articles that may transport adventuring events lengthy distances. The brand new omnimounts launched are the next:

  • Grand Luckwyrm (CR 21)
  • Galdrashan (CR 23)

The Grand Luckwyrm is a furry, serpentine dragon with an nearly canine face that I’m certain solely resembles another such creature by random happenstance. Galdrashan is an immensely highly effective astral dragon, which might sever the silver cords of astral vacationers with a chew. Whereas each are offered as omnimounts, as highly effective distinctive dragons with distinctive drives and histories, they each work as strong NPCs in a high-level marketing campaign as properly.

Granny’s Concoctions

This text introduces an NPC and her potion store, in addition to a number of secrets and techniques connected to the NPC. Along with the NPCs offered, there are an entire lot of recent potions/poisons included within the article as properly.

Granny Greenwinkle is a gnome that likes to painting herself as a strong hag to extend her repute. Her cat, Flufftavius, is definitely an grownup copper dragon. Along with the entire consumable magic gadgets offered within the article, there are three story hooks that tie into utilizing Granny and Flufftavius in a marketing campaign.

The gadgets within the article are divided into the next classes:

  • Granny’s Potions
  • Granny’s Explosives
  • Granny’s Poisons

There are greater than 40 new consumable gadgets on this article. A few of my favorites are Immediate Mouse (you remodel right into a mouse once you drink it), Chaos Kaboom (an explosive that lets unfastened a random magical impact decided on a d10 desk), and the Phial of Medusa, a poison that may flip somebody that is available in contact with it to stone for twenty-four hours.

I’ve all the time cherished alchemist outlets in fantasy tales, and wild potions. I really like consumables in D&D as a result of they’re non permanent gadgets. They may be precisely what you want, however you have to make the choice to make use of that useful resource. Moreover, I really like new poisons, partly as a result of I just like the potential of getting a nasty murderer use one thing that the PCs have by no means seen earlier than, or set up a repute for utilizing a singular fashion of poison of their work.

The Gilded Flight

Again in Arcadia Challenge #5, there was an article on greed or profit-driven subclasses, and one among my observations on the time is that among the shows of these subclasses felt creepily near real-world Objectivism or Prosperity Gospel philosophy. Apparently the writer, Carlos Cisco, agreed, and circled again round to make use of among the components of that article as the premise for an evil group.

Offered within the article are three members of the Gilded Flight:

  • Tamir’khashchu (Historic Gold Dragon)
  • Garin Najis (Human Cleric of the Dictum of Prophets)
  • Sym (Doppelganger)
  • Hecta Glintstone (Duergar Circle of the Gilded Druid)

The traditional gold dragon on the head of the group is satisfied they’re a pressure for good, however his philosophy is that wealth is a sign of the standard of a creature, and that good is of course finished for society when somebody makes use of their wealth to offer for themselves.

A lot of the lieutenants within the group have three to 5 hooks that present their present money-making schemes, which vary from paying staff in firm scrip, utilizing the native watch to gather from debtors, or inflating the worth of diamonds used for Elevate Useless spells. Along with these schemes, every one of many lieutenants has a number of favored bodyguards and minions listed.

The stat blocks on this article introduce a brand new formatting idea, including a superscript to the spells that the NPC can entry. These denote if a spell may be forged as an motion, bonus motion, response, or takes longer than one spherical to forged.

Closing Ideas

I proceed to like the mounts articles, and I’m going to be unhappy if that is the final time I get to see this idea. I hope that Willy Abeel publishes this idea elsewhere, probably with much more mounts. I additionally actually just like the NPC dragons within the article. I really like potions and poisons, so I’m pretty sure I’m going to be dipping into Granny’s Concoctions for some NPC gear right here or there, or for some rewards to present my PCs. I’m glad to see these ideas from Challenge #5 labored right into a villainous group. My solely choice is that I’d like to see Objectivism and Prosperity Theology separated a bit extra to point out their distinctive harmful facets, along with the place they overlap.

Future Needs

Truthfully, I’m simply hoping to see a venue the place random RPG-related concepts can come collectively, the way in which they’ve in Arcadia as soon as the journal has gone away.