Star Wars Jedi – D&D 5e Homebrew

Last year I put together a Rules as Written (RAW) character build that could be used for D&D 5th edition to play a Jedi. After putting it together, there were a lot of great comments and critiques, and one that stuck with me was I didn’t have any of the specific Force powers. I had mainly focused on fighting with a lightsaber, and using the monk’s Ki powers to simulate use of jedi powers. But nothing screamed out JEDI!

Since this week is pretty special with the release of Star Wars – The Force Awakens, I want to keep what I did with the lightsaber with some tweaks, but now I want to create a pure Monk archetype for the Lightside, and hopefully later use that to create a template for a Darkside archetype later. Sound cool? I think so, and here is the Path of the Jedi D&D 5th edition Monk Archetype Homebrew that I put together.

Novel Inspiration: Nautolans for 5th edition

Nautolans are a highly adaptable amphibious humanoid species canon to the Star Wars Universe, the most famous being Jedi Master Kit Fisto.

Nautolans make an excellent species template for any aquatic scifi species or fantasy race. Their comfort both above and below water makes them ideal for mixed-surface-aquatic parties of adventurers, allowing them the flexibility to travel from the depths of the ocean to the middle of the desert without suffering stresses worse than an average human in non-aquatic environments. Their hardy physique combined with their natural insight into the emotions and behavior of living creatures make them both capable warriors and shrewd diplomats.

Oceans, The Final Frontier: Aquatic Inspiration for Science Fiction, Part 5

Since the start of the 21st Century, I’ve come across numerous articles, photos, forum posts, and websites offering glimpses into actual or imagined futures. From the Blue Planet RPG Yahoo Group, to Facebook and other social media, it’s relatively easy these days to see cool new images to inspire your imagination. But rarely is it collected in one place. In the Final Frontier series, you will find a wide range of links and images, including RPG supplements, videos, articles on marine science, maps, real-world builds and concept sketches for sea-worthy vehicles, buildings, research stations, and even cities. Anything and everything I can find that has inspired me in my science fiction games will end up here.

So sit back and enjoy a glimpse into our own planet’s Final Frontier.

This week’s Final Frontier focuses on one of my favorite science fiction RPG settings, websites with useful programs for gamers and astronomy buffs alike, and the announcement of a scientific discovery from just days ago!

Oceans, The Final Frontier: Aquatic Inspiration for Science Fiction, Part 4

Since the start of the 21st Century, I’ve come across numerous articles, photos, forum posts, and websites offering glimpses into actual or imagined futures. From the Blue Planet RPG Yahoo Group, to Facebook and other social media, it’s relatively easy these days to see cool new images to inspire your imagination. But rarely is it collected in one place. In the Final Frontier series, you will find a wide range of links and images, including RPG supplements, videos, articles on marine science, maps, real-world builds and concept sketches for sea-worthy vehicles, buildings, research stations, and even cities. Anything and everything I can find that has inspired me in my science fiction games will end up here.

So sit back and enjoy a glimpse into our own planet’s Final Frontier.

This week’s offering focuses on aquatic adventure in films, TV, and comics.

Oceans, The Final Frontier: Aquatic Inspiration for Science Fiction, Part 3

Since the start of the 21st Century, I’ve come across numerous articles, photos, forum posts, and websites offering glimpses into actual or imagined futures. From the Blue Planet RPG Yahoo Group, to Facebook and other social media, it’s relatively easy these days to see cool new images to inspire your imagination. But rarely is it collected in one place. In the Final Frontier series, you will find a wide range of links and images, including RPG supplements, videos, articles on marine science, maps, real-world builds and concept sketches for sea-worthy vehicles, buildings, research stations, and even cities. Anything and everything I can find that has inspired me in my science fiction games will end up here.

So sit back and enjoy a glimpse into our own planet’s Final Frontier.

This week’s Final Frontier focuses on theoretical and actual architecture, as well as two gaming-specific projects that are leading players and GMs into even more aquatic adventure!

Oceans, The Final Frontier: Aquatic Inspiration for Science Fiction, Part 2

Since the start of the 21st Century, I’ve come across numerous articles, photos, forum posts, and websites offering glimpses into actual or imagined futures. From the Blue Planet RPG Yahoo Group, to Facebook and other social media, it’s relatively easy these days to see cool new images to inspire your imagination. But rarely is it collected in one place. In the Final Frontier series, you will find a wide range of links and images, including RPG supplements, videos, articles on marine science, maps, real-world builds and concept sketches for sea-worthy vehicles, buildings, research stations, and even cities. Anything and everything I can find that has inspired me in my science fiction games will end up here.

So sit back and enjoy a glimpse into our own planet’s Final Frontier.

This week’s Final Frontier focuses on scientific discoveries, theoretical research projects, and inspiringly bizarre phenomena.

Oceans, The Final Frontier: Aquatic Inspiration for Science Fiction, Part 1

I’ve spent a lot of time talking about aquatic settings and creatures for fantasy and want to turn the focus on other genres for a bit. Though fantasy roleplaying is by far the most popular genre in the world, aquatic settings can be used in modern, science fiction, science fantasy, space opera, horror, alt history, name your favorite genre and as long as oceans exist, an underwater adventure is waiting.

Since the start of the 21st Century, I’ve come across numerous articles, photos, forum posts, and websites offering glimpses into actual or imagined futures. From the Blue Planet RPG Yahoo Group, to Facebook and other social media, it’s relatively easy these days to see cool new images to inspire your imagination. But rarely is it collected in one place. In the Final Frontier series, you will find a wide range of links and images, including RPG supplements, videos, articles on marine science, maps, real-world builds and concept sketches for sea-worthy vehicles, buildings, research stations, and even cities. Anything and everything I can find that has inspired me in my science fiction games will end up here.

So sit back and enjoy a glimpse into our own planet’s Final Frontier.

The Undine, ERRT Transport

Last week I presented a campaign outline to take your D&D PCs from 1st-15th level. This week I’d planned to present enemies for use against parties of 16th-20th level, followed by a second aquatic campaign outline next week. Well, the list of enemies for the highest tier of play is so short that I decided to combine the two posts into one which will both be presented next week!

This week, I wanted to share with you a new project I’ve been working on. I’ve recently become a huge fan of the One Shot: Campaign podcast and Fantasy Flight Games  narrative dice system used for the Star Wars: Edge of the Empire, Age of Rebellion, and Force and Destiny RPGs. At GenCon this year I’ll be running my first game using this system. The party is an independent Emergency Rescue and Reconnaissance Team (ERRT) that uses a specially modified Paragon Class transport ship as a base of operations. Think Firefly, if the group had a more focused (and less criminal) profession.

Learning to be Kuhl: GM’ing “Campaign”

“…Kat Kuhl has to adapt to some of the craziest shenanigans I’ve ever heard, and she does so with grace, skill, and aplomb. Listen to One Shot: Campaign…and learn from a Game Master who knows what she’s doing, and doing it under fire.”


I am not a fan of Actual Play podcasts. Or at least I wasn’t until a few months ago. I’ve loved the idea of AP pods for years, but could never find one that grabbed me, even the ones that came highly recommended. Most were poorly (or never) edited, had a lot of dead air, page flipping, rules lawyering, or players who were more intoxicated than interested in playing. Then Shawn here at Tribality got me hooked on the Dungeon Master’s Block podcast and everything changed.

In May, I heard Michael Ross from the brilliant RPG Academy on a DMB episode. We’re both from the Commonwealth of Kentucky so we started a chat on Twitter. It was there he pointed me to James D’Amato and Kat Murphy (now, Kuhl) and the One Shot podcast; specifically the Legend of the Five Rings episodes. I was blown away. [You can read an interview with both here.] Then I heard rumors of a campaign AP podcast from the One Shot folks that used the Edge of the Empire rules I’d been introduced to at GenCon 2014. FFG’s entry into the Star Wars RPG universe is impressive, but learning an innovative new system is easier with a mentor and what I really wanted was a GM to learn from on a regular basis.

Half an episode into One Shot: Campaign my dreams had been answered. Finally, someone sounded like they cared about what they were presenting to an audience. I started ordering the core rulebooks and asking about the best supplements to buy, but this article isn’t about how intriguing the FFG Star Wars system is. In listening to an excellent GM and brilliant players telling hilarious stories I realized the true advantage of AP podcasts in the modern world: you can learn from them.

Interview with Award-Winning Cartographer Christopher West

Christopher West is best known for his work on the d20 Star Wars RPG and miniatures combat line, as well as both Wizards of the Coasts’ Maps of Mystery project, and Monte Cook’s multiple ENnie-winning Numenera RPG (including the 2014 ENnie for Best Cartography).

Chris currently works freelance for his own company, Maps of Mastery.

The Millennium Falcon

Let’s start off with a question I’ve been dying to ask. One of the things you’re known for is creating the official floor plan for the Millennium Falcon. Didn’t they have one already? How did that come about?