News Archive | 11/26/2012
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Against the Cult of Chaos
Two Ways to Play

The current D&D Encounters season, War of Everlasting Darkness, is now underway—but we're looking ahead to next year, and an exciting new way to play D&D Encounters!

Our next D&D Encounters season premieres on February 6, 2013. Entitled Against the Cult of Chaos, this new adventure takes inspiration from classics such as Village of Hommlet and Against the Cult of the Reptile God. Not only does this new story feature characters and locations from beloved past adventures, but there's another compelling reason to participate.

Two Ways to Play

Of course, there are a great many players who enjoy playing D&D 4th Edition, as well as players excited about the D&D Next Playtest. And so, this upcoming season of D&D Encounters will support both D&D 4th Edition and D&D Next, with conversion rules! This means that during the first week (sometimes known as “session 0”) when players typically make their characters, they’ll also need to decide which version of D&D they want to play. Dungeon Masters who choose to run this season under D&D Next rules will be able to download conversion notes at a later date at www.dndnext.com.

D&D 4th Edition Rules

Against the Cult of Chaos will have everything that Dungeon Masters need to run the season under 4th Edition rules. If your group wants to play the adventure under these rules, there are no substantial changes from past D&D Encounters seasons. We’re also continuing to keep the rules options open to players, allowing the following books for character creation under 4th Edition rules:

  • Heroes of the Fallen Lands
  • Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms
  • Player’s Option: Heroes of Shadow
  • Player’s Option: Heroes of the Feywild
  • Player’s Option: Heroes of the Elemental Chaos
  • Into the Unknown: The Dungeon Survival Handbook

D&D Next Rules

If you instead choose to play this season using D&D Next rules, things will be a little more involved. Your store/play group will need to do the following:

  1. Find one or more Dungeon Masters (DMs) interested in running this season with D&D Next Rules. Note that these DMs are required to be part of the D&D Next Playtest in order to download the playtest packet and conversion notes. They must also agree to the terms and conditions of the playtest in order to run D&D Next sessions in store. If you have Dungeon Masters that are not currently in the playtest but want to take part, they can sign up at dndnext.com.

  2. Your store will let your Dungeon Master know that D&D Next conversion notes for Against the Cult of Chaos will be distributed through the playtest packet in the weeks leading up to the first session of play (Session 0). DMs will be responsible for downloading all of the materials to convert the game, as well as pre-generated character sheets, if necessary. DMs will still need the adventure packet included in the D&D Encounters kit in order to run their sessions.

  3. Your store will also distribute the playtest agreements (included in the D&D Encounters kit) to all players prior to their first session of play. Players should read over their playtest agreement and retain it for future reference.

  4. Players who are signed up for the D&D Next Playtest may create their own characters. Players who are NOT signed up for the D&D Next Playtest, but wish to participate in this season of Encounters using D&D Next rules must use pre-generated characters provided by the DM.

Two Ways to Play FAQ

Q: If I’m a Dungeon Master, do I need to sign up for the D&D Next Playtest if I plan to run Against the Cult of Chaos using D&D Next Rules?

A: Yes, Dungeon Masters must be signed up for the D&D Next Playtest in order to download the conversion notes for the Against the Cult of Chaos season. If you are not already signed up, you can do so by visiting www.dndnext.com and agreeing to the Online Playtest Agreement and all other requirements for playtesting.

Q: Does the entire D&D group need to sign up for the playtest if we want to run Against the Cult of Chaos using the D&D Next rules in-store?

A: Players will have the option to either create their own D&D Next character or use a pre-generated D&D Next character provided by their DM. If a player wishes to create his or her own character, they must follow the official D&D Next Playtest sign-up process by agreeing to the Online Playtest Agreement and all other requirements for playtesting which can be found at www.dndnext.com. If a player chooses to play a pre-generated character, he or she does not need to go through the official sign up process, but will need to agree to certain terms provided in store at the start of the season.

Q: Can I create my own character for Against the Cult of Chaos if we’re running it using D&D Next rules?

A: Yes. Character creation rules are available in the D&D Next Playtest packet, which can be accessed by signing up for the playtest at www.dndnext.com. Just log in to your account (or create one if you haven’t done so already) and download the latest packet.

Q: Will pre-generated D&D Next characters be available for players?

A: Yes, pre-generated characters will be provided by the Dungeon Master at the start of the Against the Cult of Chaos season.

Q: How can I provide feedback?

A: If you are signed up for the D&D Next Playtest, you will receive emails containing survey links where you can submit your official feedback. If you are not signed up for the playtest, you can provide feedback to your DM for submitting.

Q: Do I have to be signed up for the D&D Next Playtest if I want to participate in Against the Cult of Chaos using D&D Next rules?

A: If you are a DM, you must be signed up for the D&D Next Playtest in order to access conversion notes for Against the Cult of Chaos. If you are a player, you do not have to be signed up for the D&D Next Playtest unless you want to create your own character or submit official feedback. Players who are not signed up for the playtest will simply need to agree to certain terms provided in store at the start of this season.

Q: If I’m already signed up for the D&D Next Playtest, do I have to sign up again for this season of D&D Encounters?

A: No, if you are already officially signed up for the D&D Next Playtest, you do not need to sign up again.

Q: Where will I find the materials to run Against the Cult of Chaos?

A: The 4th Edition version of the adventure will be provided by the store per the usual process for D&D Encounters. If you choose to run the adventure using D&D Next rules, you must be signed up for the D&D Next Playtest. Just visit www.dndnext.com and log in to your account (or create one if you haven’t already), and download the conversion notes for Against the Cult of Chaos.

Q: What should I do if I have rules questions?

A: If you have a rules question during gameplay, do your best to play through the issue in a fun and fair way. Then, take note of the question(s) and either provide it to your DM to submit it through the D&D Next Playtest, or log in to your own D&D Next Playtest account (if you’re signed up) and submit through one of the online surveys.

Q: Can kids participate in this D&D Encounters season if we plan to run it using D&D Next rules?

A: Players must be 13 years or older, or must obtain written permission from a parent or guardian, to participate in D&D Next playtesting, including playing with D&D Next rules during D&D Encounters.

Q: Where can I find a location to play D&D Encounters: Against the Cult of Chaos using D&D Next rules?

A: To find a store running D&D Encounters, visit www.dungeonsanddragons.com and enter your zip code in the store locator. You may need to contact the store directly to find out if they plan to run D&D Encounters using D&D Next rules.