D&D Movie Tie-In Stat Blocks – A Glimpse Into WotC’s Digital Future
D&D Beyond has a new Thieves’ Gallery that features in-game stat blocks for the characters from the D&D Movie. The future looms before us.
Dungeons & Dragons is a game about fantasy adventurers going out into the world to kill things and take their stuff. On occasion, it’s about growing strong enough to attack and dethrone a god or two. At least that’s the sort of platonic fantasy of D&D.
In reality, it often ends up being a game about trying to get your friends to synchronize their schedule enough to play together. Or, more and more often these days, figuring out which combination of toxic traits you’re willing to tolerate just enough from random strangers on the internet to get a game.
At least from the player side of things. But D&D executives view their products much differently. It’s more than a game. It’s a lifestyle. A brand, a franchise, an IP. And, just like Ohio, it always has been.
Because even when D&D was still made by one of the two people who created it, D&D was always striving to be a window into a larger world, as opposed to just a game. TSR had a long and storied history of making movie tie-in products. From Conan Adventures to one of the worst and most infamous modules ever produced, which lends its name to the most prestigious ttrpg award out there, the Diana Jones award, which comes from a burnt scrap of the cover of an Indiana Jones RPG.
Not to say that RPGs and licensed materials never go together. The Alien RPG is great. People love the Warhammer Fantasy RPG and Avatar Legends. But these were always meant to be explored in and of themselves.
But with a D&D movie and TV show coming out, this seems like all but a given. Tie-ins for the movie, tie-ins for the show. Putting characters from pop culture into D&D is a time-honored tradition that you cannot escape, wherever you go. So you may as well face the inevitable and get your Stat Blocks here
There is one constant thing, though. D&D struggles against itself, no matter what. Because when you go do things in a movie, if you ran D&D by the books, the cool cinematic things would never happen. Like a Druid turning into an Owlbear. This is why they talk about how the D&D movie tie-ins break the rules:
Some creatures have weapons that deal unusual damage types and spellcasting that functions in an atypical way. For example, Forge Fitzwilliam deals extra poison damage with his heavy crossbow. This extra damage isn’t a feature of the weapon. Such an exception is a special feature of a stat block and represents how the creature uses its weapon or casts its spells; the exception has no effect on how a weapon or spell functions for a different creature.
There are stat blocks for the entire party:
- Doric, the Tiefling Druid who can “magically transform into a Beast with a challenge rating of 3 or less or into an owlbear
- Edgin, the Bard whose magical taunts affect up to 3 different creatures
- Forge, the Rogue, deals loads of extra poison damage with every hit, and disadvantage on a hit or miss with his crossbow
- Holga, the Barbarian with a greataxe that grants lightning resistance
- Simon, the Sorcerer can create a shield to protect the party
- Sofina, the Wizard can summon a wraith and call down a Meteor Swarm which functions exactly like the spell except it isn’t a spell.
- Xenk, the Paladin, wields a weapon called a “daggersword” that can change from longsword to shortsword and dagger and back again, and is one of the coolest things WotC has done.
Interestingly enough, the tie-in statblocks are the most modern monster design we’ve seen from WotC. They use One D&D’s most current ruleset for things like grappling (it’s a saving throw), as well as showcasing features that we might see in the future.
Just a matter of time until the TV show tie-ins show up. Then the nerf blaster tie-ins. And on from there.