Thursday 12 December 2019

Dungeons and Dragons: Humblewood Unboxing

Hi folks,

Today the Humblewood Kickstarter I pledged money to delivered my campaign box set. The best way I can explain the Humblewood setting is to say that it reminds me a lot of Wind in the Willows; the characters are all based on woodland creatures and the themes are all quite wholesome. Apart from its utility to tell stories that current D&D isn't really geared towards, I felt this would be a great game for my kids if they ever got into roleplaying. They helped me unbox it tonight and my daughter said "You have to let me play two characters, if you make me choose just one I will explode." I take that as a good sign!

From the beginning, this campaign has felt like something really special. The creators were obviously passionate and engaged some wonderful artists to bring the setting to life. The box set was chockers full of great stuff, and just watching the kids' faces light up was worth the $50 I paid for it. To start with, we had a quick flick through the book, which covers the different races, deities, spells and equipment, as well as a full campaign.

There was a bunch of quick reference cards, which is so handy when you are playing. Again, the artwork is just amazing. These cover encounters, spells and NPC's really well.

There was also a small deck on "animated" spell cards, which are holographic. When you move the card a representation of the spell appears. As an adult, I think they are cute, but the kids were blown away "What is this new devilry?".

There were two sets of card standees with plastic bases included, which I am disproportionately excited about; they are just my thing. I had the option of getting miniatures of the main characters and monsters, but simply could not imagine painting another big gaming project. Besides, have I mentioned the artwork...

Lastly, there was a pack of location maps (with grids) and a world map. These were printed on a weird material; some kind of heavy duty paper that doesn't fold very well. This is the type of playing aid that is hard to get right. BattleTech use paper for maps, mostly, which fold well and can be beautiful but wear easily. Neoprene is another, very expensive option, or hard boards, which are heavy. This in-between material isn't great, but definitely workable. I have the digital files of all the maps, so I can print them and laminate them how I want anyway!

That's it for now, when we get playing I'll have some more pictures of the different locations, characters and monsters. If you have some little ones coming through the ranks and ready to have their first foray into roleplaying, I highly recommend Humblewood. It is also very versatile for bringing to life the kinds of "picture book" stories we all grew up with. I am, in fact, excited about the prospect of using the ideas from the setting to craft a Dreamtime themed campaign, with Australian native characters, focusing on Aboriginal stories I read as a kid: The Rainbow Serpent, Tiddalick (The Frog Who Caused a Flood) and The Giant Devil-Dingo (which scared the crap out of me).

See you across the table,


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