Alphastream

The Alphastream Game Design Blog

Why Classic Adventures Offer Characters Meaningless Death

Classic D&D often presents situations forcing a quick and meaningless death. Modern editions are often accused of being too easy. Why has the game changed, and what is the point of character death today?

April 7, 2022 · 9 Comments

The Real Competition for D&D and Wizards of the Coast

Who does WotC actually compete with? And who actually competes with WotC? Let’s look at WotC’s fastest-selling RPG in 2017 for an answer. It’s not 5E!

December 7, 2021 · 14 Comments

Why No RPG Company Truly Competes with Wizards of the Coast

Think D&D has RPG competitors? Let’s find out why that isn’t true.

November 30, 2021 · 10 Comments

How to Grow Old in Tabletop RPGs

An article on aging in the RPG industry. How to do it well, in a world of constant change.

August 27, 2021 · 4 Comments

Streaming Dragons and Arguing Canon

What does the future of D&D hold for dragons? And, what should D&D’s approach to canon be for 5E?

August 1, 2021 · 1 Comment

Cautionary Tales: What We Can Learn From the Satanic Panic

We discuss the Satanic Panic with renowned author Tim Harford. Why have times changed so significantly for D&D?

April 22, 2021 · 3 Comments

Why Dark Sun Was 4E’s Most Successful Setting (Part 2)

4th edition Dark Sun saw only three books, but felt like much more. Here’s how it became a huge success.

January 24, 2020 · 7 Comments

Why Dark Sun Was 4E’s Most Successful Setting (Part 1)

Why did 4E have so few campaign settings? What happened in the past and what might D&D do in the future?

January 16, 2020 · 11 Comments

Return of the Classics – Why 5E is Such a Success

Which adventures are considered D&D classics? How is it that 3E and 4E produced so few, if any, classics? And, let’s reveal how 5E is bringing back the classics!

January 4, 2017 · 13 Comments

Origins and Gen Con 2016 Bring Big News

Origins becomes the big D&D Convention, but Gen Con and PAX still bring excitement. I am fortunate to have a trio of projects released during this convention season!

May 29, 2016 · 2 Comments

Making Confrontation at Candlekeep Interactive

Previous public play events inspired Candlekeep, but its interactive design faced some daunting design constraints.

November 6, 2015 · 5 Comments

Writing Confrontation at Candlekeep

Vault of the Dracolich was a big influence, but in writing Confrontation at Candlekeep we also had our own unique vision and goals.

November 4, 2015 · 4 Comments

Support This Site

Support this Site

Twitter