March Newsletter: Goblins and Growlers Gazette

🐉 Hasbro CEO talks AI in D&D, NASA's fantasy adventure game, Daggerheart's story-driven playtest, No-magic paleolithic 5E game reaches Kickstarter goal!

⚡ (Total read time: 3 minutes) ⚡

Good Thursday to you. I’m working on this newsletter as we get ready to roll on down to Winston-Salem, NC, for Triad Anime Con to do some tabletop panels and performances — hope to see you there while we enjoy some Cheerwine and Krispy Kremes. Some interesting stuff this month with D&D’s “Forbidden Door” of content breaking down, the Hasbro CEO openly talking about AI use, and NASA’s fantasy RPG setting. (And if you haven’t, please subscribe to the GG YouTube channel 📺 )

P.S. I think this is the one-year anniversary of the newsletter? Thanks for reading!

In this month’s newsletter:

🗞️ 3 must-know gaming news nuggets
❤️ 1 awesome playtest you need to try
🔥 2 hot takes from the podcast
🧭 Goblins in the wild: Upcoming events

🗞️ 3 must-know gaming news nuggets

  • ⚔️ Kobold Press’ “Tome of Beasts 1” now available on DnD Beyond. (Dig Deeper)

    • The latest in a trickle of third-party D&D content to appear on the WotC-owned platform.

    • You can add ToB1 to your DnDBeyond library for $39.99.

    • If you’re on the jazz for more third-party materials, Hit Point Press’ “Humblewood” is there for $49.99.

  • 🤖 Hasbro CEO Chris Cocks talks about AI uses for D&D and MtG (Read the Interview)

    • Cocks says the company is currently doing R&D on AI use.

    • He mainly focuses on the idea of mining D&D’s 50-years of content by uploading it into a large language model that can remix it for audiences.

    • The interview is worth a read and we analyze it and speculate on Monday’s episode of “The Goblins and Growlers Podcast.” (plz subscribe)

  • 👶🧊 Born From Ice hits its KS funding goal. (Dig Deeper)

    • Loren Small’s paleolithic no-magic 5e setting reached its $40,000 target with plenty of time to spare.

    • There’s a stretch goal for Neanderthals as a playable species if they make it to $50,000.

    • The KS runs through April 2, so you still have time to support it.

    • Check out this episode of “The Goblins and Growlers Podcast” for an interview with Loren. Video below ⬇️

❤️ 1 awesome playtest you need to try

🗡️❤️ Daggerheart. This game from Darrington Press has been making some noise as it’s in its open beta playtesting phase. Think of it as an RPG system that’s kind of a midpoint between a stats-driven system such as 5E and a purely narrative game like “The Quiet Year.” According to their website, it’s slated to release in 2025, but you can sign up for the free beta now and get an incomplete but totally playable version of their core rules. There’s also a fair bit of cinematic play mixed in with a combat system that’s devoid of initiative or rounds and instead relies on narrative guidance from players. And the “Hope” and “Fear” dice system offers the kind of “succeed with cost” and “fail forward” mechanics I like to see in my games more and more.

Daggerheart art by Jessica Nguyen

🎧 2 hot takes from the podcasts

  • 🔭 Hubble Trouble. Some folks in the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center wrote and released a system-neutral, educational tabletop roleplaying game centering around the Hubble Telescope. It’s an interesting mix of science, magic, and a little bit of Quantum Leap. If you’re looking for a way to get younger kids interested in space AND tabletop games at the same time, then look no further into the Cosmic Background Radiation than this. (Spotify)

  • 🐉📓 Alarian Archives: Josh (Solanar) and Alex (Aelita) do a “Quid Pro Roll” deep dive into Vyrion’s Chromatic Dragon Priests and discuss Ilpihel’s origin in this behind-the-scenes episode. (Spotify)

🧭 Goblins in the wild: Where to find us.

  • 🔺🗾 Triad Anime Con. The Goblin contingent will be returning to Triad Anime Con March 29-31 in Winston-Salem, NC. Panels! Performances! Hanging out and chatting with folks in the vendor room! Come see us if you’re planning on hitting up the con.

  • 🥳 Richmond-area RPG Social. If you’re in the neighborhood this weekend, local gaming store One-Eyed Jacques in Carytown is hosting an RPG meet-and-greet on March 30 from 2 until 6. Supes casual setting for folks to meet up with other gamers and gaming orgs in the area. A few of our folks will be there flying the G&G flag.

  • Also: Follow us on Facebook and join the Discord for our public gaming events

🏕️ Time to start planning camping trips

It’s cold and rainy as I write this, but we’ve had enough warm weather that I’m excited about camping season. Years ago, we talked about hosting a G&G camping event that’s basically D&D in the woods. Let me know if that’s something folks are interested in and we might be able to make it happen.

Have a good one!
Brandon

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