Adam Bradford: Hello everyone, and welcome to this month's & Beyond, our monthly developer update, where we fill you in on the status of everything that's going on with D&D Beyond, and plenty of time, especially this month, because we've received thousands of questions. Plenty of time for Q&A from the community, so looking forward to getting into that. Let's jump right in.
All right. As we have covered a couple of times, why we're here. We are trying to inform the community, tell you where we are with current development, the content initiatives that we are obviously employing at this point, especially with all of our Xanathar's previews, so we're going to cover a little bit about that, and then we're going to talk about our short-term roadmap, what you can expect to see in the next two to three months, is really the window on the horizon that we typically look out, and feel comfortable talking to the community about.
As I've mentioned several times before, it's difficult to peg dates, when we're talking about web development, or any type of development, to be honest. What we are committed to doing is getting this done as quickly as we possibly can, and doing the best that we can for the community, so we're going to continue to do that, and as we get closer and closer to this stuff, we're able to share more of those plans, and when those things will actually hit.
And then we will end everything, as I said, with a Q&A session, and we've got many, many questions this month that we're going to try to get through, and we're also going to try to get those questions through chat, so be sure to ask those questions in chat. I have a gentleman that is quite a guy, Mr. Todd Kenreck, is going to be trying to keep an eye out for those, and he is going to collect any of those that we are not covering already, in some other place during the stream, and we will try to answer everything that we possibly can today.
So, starting with where we are. The latest updates, the things that we have deployed in the last month, since we last spoke, is we did get out homebrew backgrounds, so we're really excited about that. We've got quite a few of these that have been really, really exciting. I want to highlight one of those that I'm seeing here, is The Honorable Hood, and this is by ... Let's see who this is by. I can't remember. Valryn_Swiftblade.
I actually take quite a bit of joy in looking out through the community creations for all of our homebrew content. I do this when I have a down moment at home, sometimes, sitting on the couch. I pull out the iPad, and I just browse through these backgrounds, or feats that we've recently released, and this one, I'm quite a fan of. I like how well thought out it is. You guys can definitely check that out. We will try to get some links to you in the chat, at some point after the stream here, but The Honorable Hood. You can search, as well, for that one. Very happy with what we're seeing in the homebrew background bucket, that everyone's submitting.
Homebrew feats, we have also released that, and we have seen a little bit of traction here. I picked out the Dagger Master, from dropbear8mybaby. We'll gloss over that one, but the Dagger Master feat is a good example of being able to customize the 5th Edition rule set, to play the game that you're wanting to play at your own table, so throwing daggers, to be honest, all the historical info that we have kind of shows us that it wasn't the most optimal fighting style, but when it comes to playing at a table, Dungeons & Dragons with your friends, sometimes you just want to be that cool guy that's throwing knives, and this feat is kind of a spin on the Crossbow Expert feat, that allows you to do that while you're within five feet of a hostile creature. I'm a big fan of this, too, because I've had many players over the years, who were trying to accomplish this, so you guys be sure to go and check out what the community is submitting. Very happy with all the engagement and the content that is being submitted there.
We also were able to get in place ... We have actually expanded the team somewhat, so we have employed some of our moderators, that have been with us since the early days of the beta. We've been just incredibly impressed with the way that the moderators have handled everything that has come their way. It's been really challenging. They review homebrew. They answer the same question, sometimes 1,000 times. We are really, really pleased with the moderator crew that we have, and we've got a couple of those that have joined the team at this point, and are doing a great job at tracking down some of the minor formatting errors, or tool tips that are missing, so they are doing a great job. I'm going to let chat, maybe ... Hopefully chat is going to give them a round of applause. I don't know if I can even see that, but we're going to try.
So, definitely very happy with what's happening. The mods are doing a great job, and they have gone in and added monster descriptions for all of the monster listings, so if you have bought the Monster Manual or Volo's Guide to Monsters, you are going to actually see the full description of that monster appear in the listing now. You previously had to go to the Compendium content to see that, but we have got that in place now, where you can see that for the Monster Manual and Volo's Guide to Monsters, and we will also expand that over time, to make sure that all the sources are covered, from a description standpoint, so we're excited about that.
We also have been able to complete a big pass on Official Errata, so we have scoured through everything that's coming out of Wizards of the Coast. Unfortunately, some of the change control behind that entire process of making sure that all the content is as up to date as possible is a little more difficult than I would like for it to be. We're going to continue to work on that, and try to improve alongside Wizards of the Coast on that, but we have done a major pass on this.
So most everything that you should see on D&D Beyond at this point is covering all of the Errata. Some of the exceptions to this, at this point, are a few of the maps that we have have had updates and changes to them, and we just don't have access to some of those source files yet, so we are trying to track down the Mythical Lost Maps, to update those, especially, I think, Princes of the Apocalypse has several of those, so we're going to continue to do that, but by and large, the Errata is up to date on the website.
As Xanathar's Guide to Everything updates and changes come out, we will also be sure to incorporate all of that in a very timely manner. That is one of the joys of a digital platform, so we are definitely happy that we are able to get all of that in place at this point in time.
Xanathar's Guide to Everything
And then of course, a big update that we had ... Has it only been a week? It's been maybe a couple of weeks, now. We released Xanathar's Guide to Everything. We had a great deal of time, and energy, and effort that had to go into this. Unfortunately, it's not quite as snazzy as being able to say that we have completed some type of new feature or functionality that the community's looking for, but I'm pretty sure that if we weren't able to cover everything that was going to be in this exciting new source book, that would have been a worse situation for the community.
So, we have spent a good deal of development time making sure that we're covering some of the new types of rules that are happening with the over 21 new subclasses that have come with Xanathar's, and we're excited to get that out, really happy with how that's turned out. It's a great book. I encourage anyone that's watching, that doesn't have it, go pick it up. It is definitely worth your time and your money.
Data update, we're also going to talk a little bit about Compendium, and just general website activity. So we have started doing this every month, where we are going to share some of the data that we're collecting. This is an incredible opportunity for us to be able to see how people are using what is in D&D Beyond. So, with this we're going to share that as much as we possibly can with the community, and we're going to talk a little bit about the decisions that we end up making, based on this data, because data in and of itself is not useful to anyone, other than possibly winning a trivia contest somewhere, so we are trying to use this data to make the tool set better, and to improve the overall feel of what is Dungeons & Dragons for the 5th Edition.
All right. So let's jump into a little bit of the data. So what you're looking at here is page views versus the time spent on a page. So, as you can see right now on the site, the "My Characters" section, as you might imagine, is the most visited part of the site, so people are making hundreds of thousands of characters, if not millions. To be honest, I haven't looked at that total number in quite some time. So, people are making a lot of characters, so people are going to the "My Characters" section, to be able to use those characters in their games, and look their characters up, in order to level them up, and any other maintenance that's happening with those characters.
Spells are getting more views than monsters or magic items. That was a little bit surprising to me, but I actually thought monsters would be a little more visited here, but spells take the prize there, and then the Compendium rules section is close behind that. Then we have the races, classes, and campaign areas. So, this is all important data for us to understand how people are using the site, and this really helps us understand which areas we need to focus on, to either improve those areas, make them better and more useful for people to visit more frequently, or at a minimum, to describe the behavior of what players are needing out of D&D Beyond, so we are definitely taking this data very seriously.
To give you an idea, with the Player's Handbook, this is views versus time spent in the chapter, so within the PHB itself, we are seeing that classes are the place where everybody visits. Everybody wants to know what's going on with the bard, and the monk, and everything else, and then after that, very similar to what we've seen before, spells, equipment, combat, customization options, and you can read the list. I won't read every, single word there, but you can see what is being used the most, inside the Compendium.
So again, this is all very useful to us, especially with this being Compendium content, where we can see how many people are looking at this information in the Compendium itself, i.e., the book format, versus the actual listings, and other sections of the site that we've put together, to hopefully make some of that information a little easier to consume, especially from a filtering standpoint, so this is data that we end up using for all of those purposes.
Top search terms on the site. I saw this actually asked in the forums, so we're excited about this. Uh-oh. It looks like I've got a bar coming up on here. So we are going to fix that, I think, maybe. Wow. I don't know who's messaging me on Steam, but I'm trying to do a stream right now. Can you please leave me alone? All right. I'm sure it's for my son, to be honest. I don't even know if I use my Steam account anymore, he's on it so much.
All right. So, top search terms on the site. Very surprised about this, to be honest, but again, this is good information and data for us. The word "Feats" is the number one searched term on the site. That tells me a few things. It sounds like our feats listing is probably not surfaced well enough. It's apparently something that people are really, really looking for, and they want the information on feats, and we are probably not doing a great job of surfacing that, and letting people get to that in an easy way, so it's information that we're going to end up using to improve our navigation on the site.
"Grapple," I would expect that one. "Goblin." I'm not exactly sure why, but "Goblin" is really high up here. I think that people have been a little excited about Xanathar's Guide to Everything, and so you see that "Xanathar" has been hammering it on search terms, and then apparently people are the most confused about monk as a class, because they have to look that up more than any other class. "Concentration," I would definitely expect that. And then you see some other things that get into classes, armor, weapons. "Poison" is another big one. I'm not sure why the wolf is so high there, but people are needing that wolf. So this is the top search terms on the site.
So again, we're using this information to help us figure out, as a searchable database, which D&D Beyond is, and it's one of the key, primary features. It's foundational for us. We're going to continue to use this information to refine what's happening there. I know that some of you have reported some improvements that you'd like to see with search itself. We're going to continue to use all of this data to help us track all those down.
And then lastly for data, today anyway, we're going to take a look at top monsters viewed. So, this is not necessarily telling everyone exactly which monsters are being used the most in D&D 5th Edition right now, but it's a decent cross section of what people are looking up, for one reason or another.
So you see the classic goblin is very high on this list, and then aboleth is a great example that is probably the first creature that most users see in the list, when they go to the monster listing. So when that's happening, it makes sense that it's this high up on the list, but then skeleton, zombie. Again, the wolf makes an appearance here. So all of these are the top viewed monsters on the site. You see things like the brown bear. It looks like we have several druids out there, that are trying to wild shape, so all of this makes a lot of sense, and it's something that we are keeping a close eye on, as well, for a variety of reasons, not only to improve what's going on with the tool set itself, but also, this is information that Wizards of the Coast has access to, to understand what types of creatures people are viewing, and interested in understanding the details about, and so on.
Oh, it is time, now, for a Legendary Bundle. All right, so we're going to give away a Legendary Bundle. What you need to do, just like the last couple of months, is you need to be active in the chat, so I'm about to see. I bet, yep, the chat's, "Gimme. Gimme, gimme, please. Hello." All that stuff, so you need to make sure that you've been active in the chat for at least the last five minutes, I think, is the window we're talking about there, and we are going to give that away in five, four, three, two, one. Who do we have?
Male: Agent Prometheus.
Adam Bradford: Agent Prometheus. Congratulations. Agent Prometheus. Congratulations. I am using ... We are going to give a victory shout here, using Syrinscape, wonderful application. I heartily recommend that. All right, so Agent Prometheus, please wait on a direct message from us, and you will just need to let us know which Twitch account you would like to gift the Legendary Bundle to, and we will get you set up after the stream. Congratulations.
All right, now, where we are going. This is exciting stuff. So the short-term roadmap. I think you guys have heard about a mobile app that we're working on. I'm incredibly excited about this app. I don't even know how to express my excitement about what's going on with this. I have wanted a way to have the 5th Edition books available to me when I am in the car, and I finally convinced my wife to drive once or twice, or have them when I'm sitting on the couch, or whatever else for so long. That is going to be a reality.
It is just beautiful. I'm going to gush on this a bit. The team is doing an incredible job with what's going to be happening here, and very excited to get that into everyone's hands. You're going to be able to read that content anywhere, and as we demoed last month, I could demo a little bit more today, but we've got a lot of questions. I want to be sure that we get to them, but things are shaping up nicely. We've got a wonderful night mode that we're actually employing as part of that, so you don't kill your eyes when you're in the bed at night.
So all of that's going to be happening with the mobile app initial release, and as you can see on the slide. You've already read this. I'm sure chat's already talking about it. We are targeting this year, for the alpha release, all right? So if you're doing the math, this year is not that much longer, so I don't have a more specific date, because unfortunately, there are about 15 things that we've got to still kind of clear through, things that don't even have to do with development. So, we've got all these wheels turning, and we're trying to get this out as quickly as we possibly can, and we are very, very close.
I have no doubts that we are going to be able to get this to you this year, so you will expect to see some TestFlight emails going out. So you'll see emails from D&D Beyond, that are giving you access via TestFlight, and you will be introduced into the alpha. You'll be able to download the app. You'll be able to use that to your heart's content, provide feedback for us on our forums just like we did during the beta for what is currently on D&D Beyond, so we really want you to test this, and put it through its paces. That will be coming out very soon.
For the alpha release, you will not be able to purchase anything inside the app itself, but it will honor any purchases that you have had on the website, so if you're looking for content on the mobile app, everyone has access to the basic rules and SRD content, just like you do on the website, but if you want to really try out the book on the go, in the app, you would go to the website, make that purchase, and then you're able to download that.
Everything that you will see in the app is offline capable, so I know that will make quite a few of you happy. It will make me happy, also, for all these long airplane trips that I keep going on, so when I'm on the airplane, in airplane mode, I'm going to be able to access my 5th Edition books, so it's really exciting. We're going to get that out. Again, the target is this year for alpha access, and then we will announce the full release date for this initial pass, and really, we're going to call that the beta, when we get into the app stores proper, so when the beta starts, you know, we're targeting early next year, we'll have more information about that to come.
Homebrew races. So next on the list is being able to create an entirely new race within ... So I saw some people, even before the stream started, talking about Eberron, and how you want to create those Warforged and shifters. You are going to be able to do that without any problems, once we add homebrew races. You will also be able to add a sub-race for an existing race, so that is another big part of what's happening with homebrew races.
Then, after we complete that, I can't give a timeline quite yet on that, but my gut tells me that if you kind of keep up with what's going on with homebrew backgrounds, and homebrew feats, the actual development work there is taking a couple of weeks, so it's not terribly bad. Now, obviously the team is doing a wide variety of things, including trying to get a mobile app out the door, so we can't completely gauge that with races. Races are going to be a little more complicated than backgrounds, and a lot more complicated than feats, but we are doing everything that we can to get that to you as quickly as possible, and we'll have more to share on exactly when that's going to be happening soon. Then subclasses and the ability to create your own subclass, so you'll be able to finally have that gunslinger. That is going to follow homebrew races.
Then finally, short-term roadmap, the character sheet revamp that we have teased for everyone, we are definitely ... We've started the development on that. We're really, really excited about what's going to happen there. I hope that we have more to share with you pretty soon, as far as previews go on that, but the team is going to be really focused on this. No timelines that I can give, other than to say that we want this to happen early next year, for sure. If something falls apart, that might not happen. I hate that I have to continue to give these disclaimers, but it is the internet, and I know how it works, but we are doing everything that we can to have this available as early as possible in the new year, and I'm really excited about what's going to happen there. I've seen some of the customization options that are going to be available. It's going to be a lot of fun for a lot of people. Very excited about that.
I'm even more excited about the layout changes, all of the changes to screen real estate, and how we're utilizing that much more effectively. I'm excited about short descriptions. I'm not excited about creating those short descriptions, but I'm excited about everyone getting access to those short descriptions. I'm excited about some of the PDF changes that will be a result of that, because we're not happy with where the PDF is. I hope everyone understands that very clearly. We're not happy with where that is. That was definitely a starting point for us, but we're going to come back and improve that dramatically.
So, all of that is happening, and that is going to be our primary focus, outside of half the team working on a lot of what's happening with mobile. The primary focuses for the team is going to be placed on everything that's happening with this character sheet revamp. So that's the short-term roadmap. Let's see, what is next? Oh, Q&A already. I got through that so fast. We've got so much time for questions.
All right, so Q&A. I will start with one of the questions that I receive all the time, is, "BadEye, will you please share stories about you and the office, and the play that you guys have done, and the sessions that you've run? What are some memorable stories?" So, I typically don't share those, because you know, we have finite time here, and I want to get on to some of these other questions, that I know many people probably care a great deal more about, but I thought I would indulge today, and share with our office campaign.
So this was actually a campaign that I would attribute to even D&D Beyond's existence. So, in order to get D&D Beyond off the ground, one of the things that I did is I started playing with people inside the offices at Curse, and so we started a campaign, I guess last year, at some point, so it's been going on for some time. And we were playing through Tyranny of Dragons. We got to the end of Horde of the Dragon Queen, where Skyreach Castle was involved, so about this time last year, we played a 12 hour marathon session, here in the office, and we had crafted a model of Skyreach. So that's more or less to scale.
So, we had an incredible time. I don't know if you can see it in that bottom photo, especially, but we had some dry ice that was creating clouds for us. It was a great time, and it may or may not have involved the death of a certain black dragon, work speakers, and it may or may not have involved a little bit of the deck of many things. You know, whatever happened, it was a very happy and exciting 12 hours, so another story that I will share, where the campaign currently is.
We had to take a little bit of time off, when we were getting close to launching D&D Beyond in August, so we took a couple of months off from playing. Once we launched, we were all very eager to get back to playing, and I wanted to really change the dynamic of what was going on in the group, and make it feel like something significant had happened in the time that we were away.
So, we were halfway through the Rise of Tiamat, and they had dealt with a couple of the worm speakers, but ultimately, we had some side quests going on. They got stuck in the Shadowfell, and they could not return to the Material Plane for about what seemed like five years to them. About a year had passed in the Material Plane. So as that was going on, Tiamat rose, because no one was there to stop her, so now we have shifted the campaign in an ... I'm calling it The Reign of Tiamat, and she has more or less taken her temple, and plopped it down in the center of Waterdeep. Waterdeep is now her lair, and it is essentially post-apocalyptic survival, that the party as they finally emerge from the Shadowfell, they find themselves in the worst possible circumstances, and not only that, but also Gromph got up to his shenanigans, and he also released those demon lords in the Underdark.
So, Tiamat rules the surface, the demon lords rule the Underdark, and right now, the party finds themselves stuck in the Underdark, and they are trying to figure out what on earth they're going to do with this new reality that they find themselves in. So, a lot of fun with that campaign, special place in my heart, because this is the one that I would actually say was a big deal in getting D&D Beyond to actually materialize, so very happy about that.
All right, thanks for indulging that, and I hope that that at least answers some of the questions that I continually get about that. If you catch me at a convention or something, I will happily talk about thousands of other stories, so be sure to grab me.
All right, questions from the forums. Be sure that you ask in chat, and we are also going to be compiling anything that I miss in chat. So, the first one here that we get all the time. I've told you guys before. We will never be able to move as quickly as everyone would like for us to be able to, so instead, I'm going to say that an ETA for this feature or that feature, I'm not going to be able to give that to you guys. I will do my best to try to estimate as closely as possible, but even that carries its own dangers. I sometimes play dangerously with that, but we're just not going to be able to do that.
What we can do, as I said before, is we are committed to moving as quickly as we can, while maintaining a level of quality that we want to maintain, so that's really important. So, we're going to continue to move quickly.
Our high level strategy here is we are trying to get character management, with the builder and the sheet, and everything that's going on with the rules database, and that entire engine, we are trying to get that in just the most perfect shape that we can possibly get it in, before we move on to some of these bigger, more exciting things that we have on the roadmap, because we know that there are some gaps that we're trying to address, because at the end of the day, I was thinking about this last week, we have been formally launched for just over three months at this point, so it hasn't been that long. We're going to continue to do that. I don't think that's going to take us too much longer to get in a place where we feel very comfortable with those elements, and then we're going to move on to the other things.
One of the questions that we get quite a bit on the forums is, "What's going on with campaign management?" Campaign management itself is a difficult one, because it's hard to identify what people are actually talking about, when they ask for campaign management tools. So we have received quite a bit of feedback on the forums, where we feel much more comfortable with understanding what the most people are asking for, so just like we have done with character management, where we have compiled months and thousands of posts of feedback, together to make real decisions, and not just be reactive, and with knee-jerk reactions to all of these bits of feedback.
We have compiled all that. We've considered it. We've decided what the best path is, and we're now executing on that. We are in the process of doing that with campaign management, so I want everyone to know, we're not forgetting about it. We're not trying to not answer you. We're definitely not trying to upset anyone, for not being able to share any more information on that. I'm just telling you that we're in the process, right now, of conceptualizing everything that that should be, how we need to bite that off, what phases we might deploy all of that, and we do have a plan. We are not flying blindly here. We do have a plan, and we're going to execute that, so you know, for what it's worth, rest assured, we're on it. None of this stuff is ever going to come as quickly as everybody wants to see it, so the ETA part, hard for me to answer those questions.
Additional campaign slots. We'll go there. This is something that we are starting to see. I don't think we were getting this question very frequently at all to begin with. We saw it a couple of times, but we're starting to see this more and more, so we will certainly look into ways for you to unlock additional campaign slots, either within a campaign, to increase the 12 player limit, which if you're playing with more than 12 people in a campaign, oh help you, I tell you.
But ultimately, we'll look for ways that we could potentially do that, and we'll look for ways to increase the count of campaigns. One of the things I would like to say is if you happen to own a store, and you are trying to run organized play events for the Adventurers League, we do have the capability, if we can verify that you're a store. There are some things that we can do for you, so feel free to reach out to us via support, and we can get back to you, and try to help out stores, because we definitely want to help local stores as much as we possibly can, especially with trying to play Dungeons & Dragons with your customers. So, definitely reach out to our support team, and we can try to help.
Private forums for campaigns is another question that has come up. This is something that from a technical standpoint, we can do, I'm going to say relatively easy. The development team is over there, just shaking their heads, so mad at me right now. But it's not too difficult, but what we are trying to avoid, with just turning private campaigns on, is again, we don't want to make a knee-jerk reaction to someone saying that they just want something quickly. We want to make sure that we are mindful of how turning on private forums for campaigns is going to fit into the overall framework of what the entirety of campaign management will be, so that's kind of where we're coming down on that. It is something that we definitely plan to do.
With what we're trying to plan, and really set out the vision for, for campaign management, we have to even ask the question of whether forums have a place in that, and whether they're needed, after we get done with some of the other things that we're talking about. So, all of those things are being weighed very heavily and seriously at this point, so I imagine in the coming few months, you will have a much clearer picture about what's going on with all of that.
Unearthed Arcana and the Revised Ranger
Unearthed Arcana and the revised ranger. With continue to get this one a lot. This was on here last month. I'm just going to say that we do have some level of clearance from Wizards of the Coast, to allow Unearthed Arcana content in the tool set, so I do think that we will have more to share on that pretty soon, but then, for the revised ranger, we will be adding the revised ranger as soon as Wizards of the Coast announces the actual plan for how that's going to work.
I think the most recent news that has come out to the public has been that the revised ranger is likely to take alternate class features as an approach, instead of an entirely different class, entirely new class. It would be the base ranger, what is in the Player's Handbook, but then you would be able to switch out some of those class features for alternate features. So, as that's happening, we are going to stay on the pulse of everything that's occurring, and we are going to follow Wizards of the Coast's lead there, so as soon as we have something that is official, and ready to play, it will be available in D&D Beyond, rest assured.
Back to top and navigation improvements. This is an important one. You're going to see some dramatically improved navigation in our mobile app, and I'm really excited about that. So everything that's happening there, all the work that we're putting into place there, is going to, at some level, be reusable on the website, so we absolutely, once we nail things there, we will come back to the website, and improve navigation, particularly for Compendium pages, but we also are talking about ways to have floating action buttons, to allow you to get back up to the top of a page much easier.
We're also going to be revamping our header in the near future, where we're not using up so much space. I'm going to get some hallelujahs out of this one, but we're going to be able to see the entirety of a long forum post title. All of that's going to be happening in the near future, so all of those things will tie into exactly how this navigation improves over time, so we are definitely getting to that.
Adventurers League log sheets. This is another thing that's really important to me. I really enjoy Adventurers League play, especially after going to an event like PAX Unplugged this weekend, and seeing people waiting in line for hours, I think at some points, that they literally couldn't take the number of people that wanted to play in those games. It was really incredible to see that much interest, so we definitely want to do what we can for Adventurers League play. Log sheets are something that we have certainly talked about, and we are going to continue to work closely with Wizards of the Coast, to make sure that those plans are tied off, and as soon as that is not in flux, we are going to start executing there as well.
Third Party Products
Third party products. We continue to get this one as well. It's a little complicated, but it is something that we are interested in exploring. I definitely don't have an ETA on this, and it is something that we are kicking around. We're trying to figure out how this can work. we're trying to figure out how we can get information and good from the DMs Guild, so even DDAL adventurers, for the Adventurers League. Those kind of things are a little more challenging, from a business and bookkeeping perspective than they are a technical perspective. Technically, not a challenge really at all, but we're trying to work through some of the other things on the other side of that, to figure out what we can do with some of these third party products, but it's something that I would like to see, and it's something that we will continue to pursue, and see how we can make it happen.
Non-Magical Item Homebrew
Non-magical item homebrew. This one has come up a little more frequently of late, and ultimately, what this comes down to, for the most part, is people want to be able to homebrew a katana, so they ... I'm going to just put this out there, you're trying to break the game, by doing 1d8 damage versatile, but then allow finesse with it. You're trying to break the game, but that's okay. That's okay, because it's your game, and rule number zero is for everyone to have a good time. So, if having a katana with finesse, and slicing foes to bits is your idea of a good time, sounds like a pretty good time, then by all means, we're going to try to support this.
It will probably take the shape of being able to customize from a base item, especially if we're talking weapons or armor, because all of the damage types, and all of the damage die types are already covered by existing base weapons and base armor, so it would probably be a situation where you would need to take that long sword. You can re-skin it, essentially, as a katana, and possibly add the finesse property, if that's what you're looking for.
So, it is something that is on the list. It is not as high up as the things that I talked about in the short-term roadmap section, but it is something on the list, and we'll continue to look for ways to implement that in the correct way, where we make sure that it doesn't have any unforeseen consequences.
Monster and Spell Cards
Printing spell and monster cards. So this is something that I enjoy quite a bit, so one of the things that we're going to do in the very short term, is try to figure out a way that the spell and monster views, that we have in our listings, are better to print, kind of from the outset, so that's probably the first iteration of this, is making sure that we have actual print views for spells and monsters, so I know that I have seen a pretty large number of people are taking monsters and printing them off. They enjoy being able to scribble on them, keep up with hit points, and so on.
So, we are going to, in the short term ... I'll just be really transparent, I thought I had one of our development resources kind of dog-eared for me, even this week, to start working on changing our monster stat block view, so we're going back to a classic view, the kind that you would see in the books, so that will be coming as soon as I can get that resource, but the resource fell through for this week. We're going to try to make that available as soon as possible, so that's one of the key changes is making sure that monster stat block matches the official formatting. We tried an experiment with the current layout, and we've heard that it's not working, so we're going to change that to that format, and then in the process of doing that, another thing we're going to look at is making sure that we have better print views for those things, so hopefully that's going to make several of you happy, that are using it for that purpose.
Random name generation sources. So we got this question as well. The question was, "Can we add all of the random names that are in the Player's Handbook, Volo's Guide to Monsters, that are tied to the races? Can we add all the random names from Xanathar's Guide to Everything?" The answer to that is that stuff's already added. The reason that you might not understand that it's already been added is that it is also in a database with the entirety, and it is a huge library of names, that come from our friends at Fantasy Name Generators, so if you're randomizing, it might take you quite a few clicks to hit one of those names that's available in the Player's Handbook, under a race. So, therefore, reading between the lines here, I think the request is really something more along the lines of being able to filter which sources you are generating those names from, and that is something that we are looking into doing, and I imagine we'll be able to knock that out reasonably soon, so it is something we can do.
Wild Shape and Familiars
Wild shape, companions, familiars. This comes up every month, and I continue to talk about our current developer, that's playing a druid, that he wants this very badly. I keep trying to use this against him, to see if he will just work over the weekend, to try to make this happen, and it just hasn't happened yet. But ultimately, yes, we definitely intend to have full-blown wild shape functionality. We want this eventually. You know, the first iteration of this will be able to have a wild shape tab, where you can go and choose any monster, and then you can add that monster as a wild shape, and you would have all the relevant statistics right there, in kind of a stat block format, for what you would want to see at a glance.
But, the end goal there is you'll be able to activate a wild shape, and it would actually change and morph your statistics. We'll probably even have options for being able to overwrite your portrait, that if you're a bear, you now have a bear portrait instead of your normal portrait, so all of that is planned. We are going to get to it as soon as we can.
Tool tips in the character sheet and builder. This is something we definitely want to do. This is something we are trying to incorporate as part of the revamp. I'm not sure if it's going to get out in the first pass of what's coming out with the revamp, but it is something that's on the list, something that we want to do.
Another thing that the revamp will accomplish, in some really, really handy ways, is since we are moving away from collapsibles, and we're not collapsing content on top of itself on the sheet, we have this concept that when you click something for more details, you're able to get that information sliding over for you. Again, you'll see more of that soon, but ultimately, with that, that helps us to actually have a path and a mechanism, to try to get tool tips to work on mobile, because that's really challenging. In any kind of tool tip situation, you don't have a hover state on mobile, so that's something else that we're looking into, and we're going to try to incorporate over time.
Inventory and other possessions. I'm really happy with where our inventory management has gone from beta. I'm not sure if anybody remembers just how atrocious it was during beta, and that was a situation where we got that out there. We saw, immediately, that it was not what the community needed, and we've done a pretty good bit of effort to retool how inventory management works. I think it's in a much better state now, but one of the ... Especially with starting equipment, some of the recent changes we've put in place, but I am not happy, really at all, with the way that we handle this "Other possessions" bucket, so that is something that we are looking for ways to improve over time, as well. Definitely on the list.
Public API is another thing that's on the list, and we are getting this more and more. This is good news to me, that we're getting this question, because it is telling me that people are really using what's going on in the tool set, and they're wanting to think of creative ways to do more with the information that's coming in the tool set, so we definitely like that there's interest here. It is something that is on our list.
I'll be very honest, with everyone here, it is not something in the short term, that we're going to be able to do, and there are a variety of reasons, that I don't have time to really get into right now, but it is not something that's going to happen in the short term. It is not something, however, that is not on the list. It is definitely there, and we're going to look for ways to try to make this happen.
Gift Cards and Codes
Gift cards and codes. We are getting to that time of the season, so we're trying to ... We're definitely trying to make this happen, and again, this is a little harder, from a business perspective, than I would like for it to be, so we're trying to check all the boxes that we need to check, to make sure that this happens, and as soon as we get the clearance to do this, we will do it. I'm not sure if we're going to hit this holiday season or not, so if you're trying to gift something in D&D Beyond, and put it in someone's stocking, then I definitely recommend you get them a PayPal card or something like that, to make that happen in the short term, but we are going to integrate this as soon as we're able to do so.
PDF character sheet export improvements. I touched on this earlier. Not happy with how it works now. I think that's no secret. We are going to improve this dramatically. One of the things that will improve this the most is the ability to have the short descriptions, where you can see, at a very quick glance, what that class feature, or that racial trait, or whatever is doing for you, so that will be incorporated into the PDF as we move forward with this big revamp that we're doing.
Got another question about an introductory or starter bundle. I really like the idea here. This is something that we can bring up with Wizards of the Coast, and see what their plans are, as far as how they're going to kind of execute their strategy for onboarding players, because you know, I think that they have some thoughts about that. So, it is something that we'll be talking about, and we'll see what we can do here, see what the future holds.
Then, finally from the forums, and then we'll take other questions, and I might take a breath, but, "How can the community help?" So, to be honest, I'm not exactly sure what angle this question is attempting to take. One way that people in the community can definitely help is we are absolutely hiring here, at Curse, so I'll go on and throw that out there. We have a couple of development positions that are open. I encourage anyone that has the chops to do that, by all means, go to curse.com and look in the "Careers" section, and apply to work here. That's a very concrete way that you can help, as the community.
Another thing that is going to help us more than anything in the short term, again, since the public API is not something that will materialize in the near-term horizon, the best way for the community to help at this point is continue to invest in the platform, and continue to evangelize D&D Beyond. I saw people doing that at PAX Unplugged. It was great to see people walking around some of the tables, and seeing people using D&D Beyond during the sessions. All of that is going to be really, really important, and that is probably, in the short term, the best way that you can help with getting the word out there about D&D Beyond, because the better we perform, and we are doing well. We're really happy with where we are.
We know there's a lot of ground that we still have to cover, but the more that you invest in the platform, the more resources we're going to have at our disposal, to make all of this stuff happen quicker and better, so that's definitely kind of the lofty answer to that question.
All right, how much time do we got? A little over 10 minutes. Let me see if I can get this thing to work.
Adam Bradford: Oh, is there a giveaway somewhere? There's one. Yes, let's do a giveaway. Let's do a giveaway. I think the slide was out of order. We are going to give away another Legendary Bundle, so you need to be active in the chat in the last five minutes or so, so if you have not been, please type, type, type. Hype it up. Man, I love seeing this thing. It's like a slot machine, it just ... All right, so we're going to give this away in five, four, three, two, one.
Male: Grand Pyromania.
Adam Bradford: Grand Pyromania. Grand pyromania. You are the winner. Congratulations. All right, I got to make sure that ... Whoops, that's not right. I got to make sure that I also give Grand Pyromania all the "Yays." I'll even throw in a "Huzzah." All right. So, Grand Pyromania, congratulations. Congratulations.
All right, so let's take some questions. Let me see, here. I'm not an iOS user. I'm trying to learn. It's happening, so all right, here we go. My goodness at the number of questions. I'm going to do my best here, guys. So, [LeefriedMan87 00:50:51], "Can community creations be rated and ranked?" We talked about this last month. It's definitely planned. I think the current plan ... I hope I don't get in trouble from the dev team here, for misspeaking, but the current plan is for that to roll out with races. I think that is the plan, and that would roll out across all of the homebrew elements, so not too much longer.
All right. DM_Anvil, "Favorite subclass from Xanathar's ..." From Adam. All right, so from me, my favorite subclass from Xanathar's guide to Everything. That is a tough one. Well, see, I like the Sun Soul quite a bit, to be honest, but it's because of the character concept, but it was originally in SCAG, so we won't count that. I like the Kensei quite a bit. I like monks, so we'll go ahead and say that. Then I would say outside of that, my favorite is going to be a paladin Oath of Redemption, because I think it would be incredibly intriguing to play.
All right, maybe Todd answered that elsewhere, because he is not mic'd in right now. All right, "Can we get multiple options for downloading maps, images, low res, medium res, high res?" I think that's doable, yeah. Yeah, we can definitely do that. I'll have to see how we can prioritize that, but I can understand the need for that, and we'll see about getting that added to the list.
"When will Adventurers League be live?" The Adventurers League is live right now. It has been for some time, but I think the question is saying, "When will Adventurers League validation and integration be live on D&D Beyond?" So, to answer that, I don't have an ETA. It is going to happen in stages. One of the first parts of those stages is even allowing you to just filter by source in the character builder, so that's going to help you with the +1 requirements, so we're going to kind of bite off pieces little by little, but I do feel like into 2018, we're going to be in a pretty good place for that with AL integration.
Let's see, what else do we have? DM_Anvil, "Any plans to integrate a dice roller into D&DB?" Yes. I will leave that there for now. Absolutely. Caleb Flynn, "Can you make a video series for YouTube, that represents what D&D Beyond can currently do? Most of the videos out are from before the launch." This is something that Mr. Kenreck and I have been talking a great deal about, so I expect we will start to see some of that type of content happen as we get into the new year.
"@D&DBeyond, are there any plans to add capabilities to add templates, like vampire, half dragon, to player characters?" Man, you guys are trying to break the game again. No. There are absolutely plans for this. This is something that will be a no-brainer by the time we get to monster building. I'm very excited about that. Can't talk about it too much, yet, but it is something that we will absolutely be able to provide in the future.
"Are there plans to allow characters with familiars to have those familiars linked on the main sheet?" Yes, absolutely. Similar to wild shape, or any other type of animal companion, we would have a section for familiars.
Scotty's Kid, "What are the chances of adding tool tips for the new tool rules in Xanathar's?" Yeah. That's an interesting one. Haven't seen that requested before. I think it's a good request. We would have to really think through how that will end up working, since that is classified as an optional rule. So, it might be a little difficult for us to be able to explain the experience, the user experience to users, with how they could maybe show tool tips for those things, if that optional rule is turned on, so some complexities there, but I like where your head's at, and we will see what we can do.
All right, "Ae you guys ..." this is also from Scotty's Kid, "Are you guys going to include some of your awesome videos inside the class and other listings?" Oh, Todd's like grinning ear to ear about his awesome videos. So yes, we are absolutely going to add those awesome videos into the flow, not only of the character builder over time, but also in the class pages, so we do have plans to integrate that video content much more deeply in the site, and we will do that in the near future.
"Will AL adventures/content from Wizards of the Coast be coming to D&DB?" I kind of answered that before. I hope Pie Whackett, "Shopping lists/wish lists for character sheets, something like a plan list for your next level, or a visit to the market?" This is also something we want to do over time. We want to expand inventory management, to allow for dungeon masters to set up stores, or wish lists, and all of that, and for your character to be able to select those items. It is something that we have planned. Can't tell you when we would get to that, but we definitely have it planned.
"Please add spells from feats and races to the known spells. Please, please, please." Oh, this is a good one. This is something that we will absolutely be doing. This one irritated me. I was playing a bard warlock multi-class the other day, and I saw how this spell list is actually coming out, with my racial traits from my Yuan-ti pureblood coming in in a different place, and I was just thinking what a travesty this is, so yes, this will be fixed. We will integrate spells, and you're going to have a couple of different options, mainly to sort by spell level, regardless of class, and then you can sort by class and spell level, so yes, that is coming.
"List of insults for vicious mockery." Fantasy insult generator on the app store. I think it's free. It's one of the best things you'll ever see, because it even feels Medieval. Check it out.
"Any sales planned for the holidays, Black Friday?" Oh. Oh no. You guys might ought to ... Like, we are a digital tool set, so we're not like a brick and mortar, right? So I wouldn't wait in line anywhere for any deals for D&D Beyond on Black Friday, but you know, there's this other thing that comes on the other side of that weekend. I think it's called Cyber Monday. I don't know, you guys might want to check in on that day.
"Any plans for more of the interview-type videos with streamers?" Yes, absolutely. Let's see, "D&D Beyond, what OS or OSs will the alpha release ..." iOS and Android. I'm going to have to do rapid fire, here.
"Didn't you say that custom classes were an eventual possibility?" Not base classes. I've actually said quite the opposite of that, so subclasses, we absolutely will support. Base classes are not on our current docket, because there is a lot that goes behind a base class. It's very difficult for us to give you the tools to just kind of willy-nilly be able to do anything that you want to do, so not in our current plans. We will see what we can do in the future.
"Will we be getting voice pronunciation updates for the content that doesn't currently have it?" I imagine something like that could probably happen in the future. "Can we get additional spells for characters like wizards and warlocks, who copy rituals into their spell books?" Working on that. "Are there any plans to release D&D Beyond created content, like you did with the pre-order bonuses." Potentially in the future. That has been received well.
"Will there be some way for players to view the DM's own classes, races ..." So this is like whitelisting, blacklisting, I think is what this is trying to get at. The answer to that is yes. That is something that we see a great need for, and we're going to do. "Will you add spell changes like invocations, adding range?" That is actually, if that is not already in, that should be in any time now. That's something that we have very recently added. That's all I see here. I think I have one minute left.
I wanted to end with saying that we will not have our regular monthly stream next month. I am really happy the holiday season in the US is upon us, and we take some time off around that, especially for the team. The team's been working hard. I encourage them to take some time off. We will not have that stream, because the third Friday of next month, I will probably be seeing The Last Jedi for my fourth and fifth time on that Friday, and I won't have time to come into the office.
So, we will not have a stream for next month, but we will come back in January, and probably answer two months' worth of questions at that point in time, but I really encourage everyone to have a great holiday season. We're not disappearing. We'll still be around, so contact us on the social media channels, and in our forums is a great place to do that. Please, please check in with us, if you have any other questions.
Also, I am going to since it is kind of the start of the holidays, I'm going to do one more Legendary Bundle. I don't even have a slide for it, I don't think. Let's see, maybe I do. I have a slide for it. We're going to do one more. This was not planned, but we're going to do it. All right, so go wild in chat, wild in chat. Let's see what we got. All right, we're going to give this away in five, four, three, two, one.
Adam Bradford: One more time, Me Justeee?
Adam Bradford: Lee Justeee.
Adam Bradford: Yeah, J-U-S-T-E-E-E. Lee Justeee. Yeah, so congratulations for that. I also owe you some measure of "Yays" and "Huzzahs." So congratulations. Again, thanks everyone for joining us. Really appreciate the questions. I tried to get through as many as I could. Thank you very much for watching. We'll see you next time. (Silence).