Dungeons & Dragons Changes the Game. Literally.August 24, 2020
By now the news is all over the web: on November 17th, Dungeons & Dragons is releasing its newest rules supplement…and it is going to be massive. Billed as the largest rules expansion since Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything promises to level up your D&D in a big way.
A project on which they’ve been working for a year and a half, Tasha’s takes the most popular Unearthed Arcana ever, providing new options for players and DMs to “level up their game,” according to Jeremy Crawford.
What’s in it?
Wizards of the Coast reaffirmed its commitment to diversity and inclusion over the past months, and this book is one of the first books to make some called for changes. New options for character origins and lineages will allow players to take traits from their race and modify them to make a character that uniquely fits their vision.
A character’s lineage is separate from its race, and from the provided description, it sounds like players will be able to use it to make their character their way.
Halfling Barbarian? Why not? Dwarven Sorcerer! Yes, please. The team made it seem like players would no longer be stuck making sub-optimal in game rules choices related to race, class, and abilities, in favour of roleplay and character concept.
The Artificer class, first introduced in Eberron, is reprinted in Tasha’s, and tweaked slightly so the class is at home in any D&D world. It includes new infusions and a new subclass called the Armorer, which was presented previously in Unearthed Arcana.
The Beastmaster ranger is getting a boost with the inclusion of three new primal beast companions, though details on what three companions was not forthcoming at this time…
To answer your question yes, Psionics, are appearing in Tasha’s, with the Aberrant Mind subclass, and a few other unnamed subclasses with psionic traits. The psionics system will be a modified version of what was released in Unearthed Arcana.
Perhaps the biggest news is that Tasha’s will introduce new features for the base Player’s Handbook Classes, not just new subclasses. Jeremy Crawford didn’t explain how the features would be subbed in and out, only that their goal was to “get it as close to your desired play experience as possible.”
It will include new spells and magic items, and introduces a collection of new summoning spells (summoner subclass?) and a few new spells belonging to the book’s patron, Tasha’s Caustic Brew, and Tasha’s Otherworldly Guise. A new, presumably psionic, cantrip called mind sliver is introduced, as well.
Magic Tattoos, magic items that serve as spellcasting foci, and new artifacts are included as well. Little detail was provided on magic tattoos, but Crawford said that they realized there weren’t enough magical items that served as foci for the spellcasting classes, and that’s something they wanted to address in this book. It contains new foci for every spellcasting class.
Crawford also teased a new artifact, a Tarokka Deck, which you can use to capture evil spirits…and as you use the deck, these spirits can escape! It’ll be up to you, brave hero (or not…) to recapture them! So the answer to ‘who ya gonna call?’ is now…yourself, thanks to Tasha.
Magical environments will be introduced to give DMs new ways to challenge and awe their players. A mimic colony? Probably not a great place to send a level 2 party, but it also includes enchanted springs, a mirror realm where magic is unraveling, and others.
Crawford said that “this is one of multiple books where we will be demonstrating in a shift in how we handle certain things in the game, including race options. This new rules option gives [players] a major tool in creating a character that is not bound by species archetypes.”
It sounds like they’re reviewing the pillars of Dungeons & Dragons to ensure they still effectively support the game, and its community, which is a good thing.
What a glorious time to be alive. On November 17th.
Now? Now we just have to suffer, until this book is in our hands.
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