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Rule-of-Three: 10/24/2011
Rich Baker

You've got questions—we've got answers! Here's how it works—each week, our Community Manager will be scouring all available sources to find whatever questions you're asking. We'll pick three of them for R&D's Rich Baker to answer, whether about the about the making of the game, the technical workings of our DDI studio, or anything else you care to know about… with some caveats.

There are certain business and legal questions we can't answer (for business and legal reasons). And if you have a specific rules question, we'd rather point you to Customer Service, where representatives are ready and waiting to help guide you through the rules of the game. That said, our goal is provide you with as much information we can—in this and other venues.

1 There's a bit of confusion on some of the pixie abilities, and while Rule of Three isn't normally for rules questions, I thought I'd give it a try. First, what exactly does "Altitude 1" mean? Is altitude 1 the same square/cube that a medium creature occupies, or is it a square/cube above that? Next, the Wee Warrior racial trait and the shrink ability have some odd wording when looked at together. Do these two combined mean that a pixie can't wield a normal two-handed weapon that is then shrunk down to tiny sized?

(I consulted with Jeremy Crawford, our lead developer on Heroes of the Feywild. Jeremy pointed out that our preview did not include a sidebar that actually appears in the manuscript very close by the material we showed off to everybody. Here’s the sidebar, which may clarify a few things.)

As a pixie, keep the following rules in mind.

  • Sharing a Space: Because you are Tiny, you can enter the space of a Small or larger creature and end your turn there (forced movement must still end in an unoccupied space, unless noted otherwise). Two creatures are considered adjacent if they are in the same square.
  • Altitude Limit: You fall at the end of your turn if you are using your racial fly speed and are more than 1 square above the ground (see the rules for flying and falling in the Rules Compendium).
  • Weapons: Because you follow the same weapon rules as a Small creature, you cannot use a two-handed weapon unless it has the small property. When you use a versatile weapon, you must use it two-handed but don’t gain the normal +1 bonus to damage for using it in that manner.

To be completely clear, Altitude 1 means you have 1 empty 5-foot cube under your heels. If you are at Altitude 0, you’re standing on the ground (or at least hovering in the square at the same height as someone standing on the ground). Altitude 1 means you’re in the next “square” up. You’re still in reach for melee attacks from people on the ground, and you can still reach them. See the diagram if that description isn't perfectly clear.

2 Speaking of the postponed article for the thri-kreen, what plans are there to support other races? I'm specifically speaking of the non-PHB races such as those from the Monster Manuals; e.g., kenku, bugbears, bladelings, duergar, etc.

Funny you should mention bladelings; we just accepted an article about ‘em. We’re planning on running the article in an issue that’s still a ways off, so it’s going to be a few months before you see it. As for the other races you mention, those all seem to me like great topics for potential articles, and if any come through our submission process, I’d be happy to see them. In fact, if you’re really interested in seeing some of these races prioritized, let us know at If nothing suitable is in our submission stack, we can always commission articles to meet specific demand.

3 Matt Sernett was recently on a design team for a Magic: The Gathering set. What are the chances of a crossover between M:tG and D&D (either using a D&D campaign setting as the backdrop for a Magic expansion or using a M:tG plane as a D&D campaign setting)?

Back in 1997, when Wizards of the Coast acquired TSR, we took a long look at the idea of D&D and M:tG crossovers. We even did some early concept work. Ultimately we chose not to pursue crossover products. Basically, we feel that D&D and Magic: the Gathering are two different experiences aimed at different audiences. We want to be careful not to make either game into something that it isn’t in an attempt to increase its appeal in the other category—if adding trappings of Magic to a D&D setting impinged on the “D&Dness” of that setting, or vice versa, it would just dilute what each brand does best. If our thinking on that changes or if we find an opportunity to explore a crossover, you’ll be the first to know. After us, of course.

We do trade personnel back and forth between the D&D and M:tG R&D teams, as the opportunity presents itself; there’s a lot each team can teach the other. That’s why Matt was involved in some recent Magic work, and we’ve had folks like Tom LaPille, Robert Gutschera, Ryan Miller, Mike Donais, and Mons Johnson involved in D&D projects over the years.

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