We are fortunate enough to have received copies of the Dark Sun Campaign Setting and the Dark Sun Creature Catalog today, and as usual we’d love to share anything and everything that we can with you guys!
My initial impression of the Campaign Setting book is that it provides a great introduction to the world and setting of Dark Sun for new players but also a very nostalgic and interesting read for those returning to the world of Athas. The Thri-kreen race is something that I’ve always planned to use in my own games even outside of the Dark Sun setting, and this holds even more true now that I’ve seen the racial write up. After just a cursory look through the Creature Catalog I am now completely psyched to start playing in a Dark Sun game and face every single one of the fiendish beasts that resides within it!
Earlier today I offered to answer questions via twitter (@Bartoneus) and here are some of the questions I was asked and the answers I provided (names were removed for privacy and simplicity):
Q: What classes are NOT allowed?
A: No classes are specifically banned, but divine characters need a special explanation for how they gained their powers and DM approval.
Q: How useful is the creature catalog to someone not running Dark Sun?
A: The Dark Sun Creature Catalog has 53 monster entries, and 13 unique personality entries, but not sure how they fit sans desert.
Q: What are your thoughts on 4E Thri-kreen?
A: I really like how they’ve done Thri-kreen in 4e, and there is a good amount of artwork showing them which is awesome!
Q: Where are the gods in Dark Sun? Gone? Dead? Unknown?
A: The gods in Dark Sun are only mentioned as being either long dead and nearly forgotten or silent and forgotten. There’s a DM-only explanation near the back of the book too.
Q: The weapons exclusive of the Dark Sun Campaign (the old one) are present in 4th edition? give us some examples… please?!
A: Lots of Dark Sun weapons: Talid, Dragon Paw, Trikal, Carrikal, Chatkcha, Cahulaks, Alhulak, Gouge, Dejada, Lotulis, Gythka
Q: Are there any rules about wearing armor pieces? I’m really anxious to see these books!
A: There are two full pages on how armor is changed in Dark Sun, but no partial or armor piece rules that I see.
Q: Are Muls awesome? General idea of stats/abilities? I loved the race in older editions.
A: Muls get +2 Con, and +2 Str or Wisdom – can choose human OR dwarf at creation for prereqs! Very tough! Muls get +1 healing surge, and only need to sleep 6 hours in a 72 hour period for an extended rest!
Q: What ways are there to differentiate Dark Sun half-giants from goliaths? Any way to get stomp or something along those lines?
A: There is a good Half-Giant Thug paragon path for Goliaths,other than that I don’t see anything new to differentiate them. They are commonly referred to in the books as “Goliath (Half-Giant)”
Q: Why don’t people just go to the feywild or shadowfell?
A: The Feywild and Shadowfell (The Gray) are very small, broken apart planes inhabited by dangerous creatures and very hard to find!
Those were all that I received on twitter, but now we’d like to open up the comments section here to any further questions you guys might have about the 4th Edition version of the Dark Sun campaign setting! Dave or myself will chime in to respond as quickly as we can.