Podcasts Archive | 2/9/2009
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D&D XP/Open Grave
(February 2009)
Mike Mearls & Jeremy Crawford

Click on the link to listen to the file in your browser, or right-click Save As to download to your computer. (33.4 Mbs, 35:37 minutes)

Don't just read about D&D's latest news and announcements -- listen to them as well! And where better to find inside information than from the very halls of Wizards of the Coast. Presenting D&D XP/Open Grave.

You might ask what these topics have in common… here's the best we came up with: host Mike Mearls, Bart Carroll and Stephen Radney-MacFarland just returned from the D&D XP 2009 convention, stumbling like exhausted zombies after 4 days of dungeon delving and seminar presenting. That, and Stephen continues to try and convince us of an impending zombie apocalypse.

Fine—a terrible segue, no doubt, but so it goes….

D&D XP 2009

In the first segment, Mike, Bart, and Chris look back at the events and news coming out of Fort Wayne, Indiana. The "Summit City" witnessed a storm of gaming this last weekend in January, including a series of seminars that included a look at new monsters in DDM Dangerous Delves… and since you can't exactly see them on the podcast, here's a visual sampling:


Open Grave

In our second segment, Bruce Cordell—lead designer for Open Grave—joins the studio to discuss all things undead. If you haven't had a chance to look inside the latest sourcebook, here’s a quick excerpt from one of the monsters discussed: the brain-in-jar (a much different monster than a brian-in-a-jar, who's just very uncomfortable in there).

Exalted Brain in a Jar
Level 12 Controller
Medium natural animate
XP 700
Initiative +7 Senses Perception +9; darkvision
HP 123; Bloodied 61
AC 26; Fortitude 22, Reflex 18, Will 24
Speed fly 6 (hover)
Melee Teleportation Field (immediate reaction, when an enemy hits the exalted brain in a jar with a melee attack; at-will) Teleportation
Targets the triggering creature; +16 vs. Will; the target is teleported up to 8 squares.
Ranged Fearful Recoil (minor; at-will)
Ranged 8; +14 vs. Will; the target immediately moves its speed plus 4 squares away from the exalted brain in a jar. The target avoids hazardous terrain and difficult terrain if possible.
Ranged Supreme Domination (standard; recharge 56) Charm
Ranged 10; +15 vs. Will; the target is dominated (save ends).
Close Burst Mind Stab (standard; at-will) Psychic
Close burst 5; +16 vs. Will; 1d10 + 8 psychic damage, and the target takes a –2 penalty to Will (save ends).
Alignment Evil
Languages Common, telepathy 10
Skills Arcana +16, Bluff +15, Diplomacy +15, Intimidate +15
Str 12 (+7)
Dex 12 (+7)
Wis 16 (+9)
Con 19 (+10)
Int 21 (+11)
Cha 18 (+10)

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About the Hosts

Mike Mearls is the dark hope of chaotic evil: young, handsome, well endowed in abilities and aptitudes, thoroughly wicked, depraved, and capricious. Whomever harms Mearls had better not brag of it in the presence of one who will inform the Demoness Lolth!

Evil to the core, Mearls is cunning, and if the situation appears in doubt, he will use bribery and honeyed words to sway the balance in his favor. He is not at all adverse to gaining new recruits of any sort, and will gladly accept adventurers into the ranks, but he will test and try them continually. Those who arouse suspicion will be quietly murdered in their sleep; those with too much promise will be likewise dealt with, for Mearls wants no potential usurpers or threats to his domination.

Bart Carroll is loathsome beyond description and has no redeeming features. His body resembles that of a huge, bloated buffalo and gives off an offensive odor. The author's neck is long and thin, and perched atop it is a big head uglier than that of a warthog. His legs are thick and stumpy, much like a hippopotamus. The author's tail is strong and snakey, however, and moves with amazing swiftness to strike enemies.

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