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Thread: Free DnD?

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    eek Free DnD?

    Hey guys, I reeallly realy want to start playin Dungeons and Dragons, but I am , being 14 years old in a state I can't get a job, poor. Is there anyway to find the books REQUIRED TO PLAY Dungeons and Dragons? Perhaps text versions online? Any feedback would be great.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    You can find a lot of the basic 3.5e stuff here. The WotC site has a good amount of stuff there too, so look around. Other than that... Other people probably know.

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    It would've been much better if you put this in an edition-specific subforum.
    Last edited by Hiro Protagonest; 2011-07-25 at 03:42 PM.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Well... which edition do you want to play? The current one, 4e? The one the Order of the Stick comic is based on, 3.5e?

    Also, there are games out there which are based on D&D 3.5e, but not directly affiliated with Wizards of the Coast which are completely free. Do you have no access to finances at all? That makes things difficult!

    Note that you won't have EVERYTHING you need to run or play a 3.5e game at www.d20srd.org

    But if you can find a used 3.5e D&D player's handbook, that webpage and the 3.5e player's handbook SHOULD be enough to get you going.

    How many people do you have that also want to get into this roleplaying thing with you? D&D is a group activity.
    Last edited by Gavinfoxx; 2011-07-25 at 03:49 PM.

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Well, the only avaiable free and legal resource I'm aware of are the SRD for D&D 3.5 and the SRD for Pathfinder (Which is sort of a D&D 3.75). The latest D&D edition from Wizard of the Coast, which is the 4th edition, has no free online references that I'm aware of.

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    For free, the SRD listed above is probably your best bet. WotC cracked down on PDFs of their stuff a while ago, making it rather difficult to get hold of digital copies.

    If you are willing to try something not DND, I would suggest maybe looking at http://www.homebrew.net/games/ . The selection may not be as polished as playing DND, but its free and legal (to my knowledge).
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    How "fixed" are you on DnD? Pathfinder is basically a 3.5 remake, and everything you need is completely free here.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    This, coupled with the SRD, should be... something. Anything else is illegal, but this being the internet, well... >.>
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    D&D 3.5 is now out of print, and you could propably find good copies at a used book store. You require a Dungeon Master's Guide, a Monster Manual, and a Player's Handbook in order to play. The rest is optional content.
    Last edited by Acanous; 2011-07-25 at 05:29 PM.

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    4e actually has some free stuff:
    http://www.wizards.com/dnd/TryDnD.aspx
    ^This is how I first tried it out, combined with the old offline character builder (of which you can still get that original demo on sites like Fileplanet, I believe). The page has "Test Drive" rules, or the basics of the 4e, along with a free adventure (which I hear really isn't very good, but you could always make your own or search online for other free modules).

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    All required material for D&D 3.5 is free and has already been linked. However, it receives no new support (which won't be that much of a problem if you don't plan on buying any other books).

    As for Pathfinder, it's simlar to D&D 3.5. I don't know if it's superior, but it receives support, which is nice if you ever want to buy other books. It also has a free online SRD (System Reference Document).

    Finally, D&D 4e. It doesn't have an SRD, so you're going to need to get either a Player's Handbook, Monster Manual and Dungeon Master's guides. Or their Essentials equivalent, which are less expensive and Rules-lite versions of 4e.

    As for the difference between 3.5/Pathfinder and D&D 4e: 3.5 is more rules intensive and complex, but presents you with more varied options. It's less balanced (some characters will be far, far more powerful than other characters of the same level), harder to learn and requires more bookkeeping. However, it's more varied and acheives a higher level of verisimilitude.

    4e on the other hand, is fast paced and easy to learn, but suffers in a few ways. Firstly, most abilities are combat-geared and the rules have a greater focus on combat than roleplay and skill-based encounters. Also, character options are less varied, you're often forced into one of a few roles. However, it's going to be much easier to learn that D&D 3.5.

    I personally prefer 3.5, but it's a matter of taste. Some people prefer 3.5, other 4e. There's no better edition, they are each better at certain things and less geared towards others.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gorgondantess View Post
    This, coupled with the SRD, should be... something. Anything else is illegal, but this being the internet, well... >.>
    Ooh, thanks, I was looking for that page.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    However, a word of caution! If you are using the SRD hosted on DanD Wiki, be warned that they also host a slew of absolutely terrible homebrew. Always make sure that what you're looking at is SRD content (which is usually labelled as such).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flickerdart View Post
    However, a word of caution! If you are using the SRD hosted on DanD Wiki, be warned that they also host a slew of absolutely terrible homebrew. Always make sure that what you're looking at is SRD content (which is usually labelled as such).
    Try the http://www.d20srd.org/ instead? It's much better organized and doesn't include all that, well, homebrew is too nice a word for it. It's more like the stuff they make in prison from ketchup packs and gummy bears and mouldy bread, strained through a dirty sock.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ravens_cry View Post
    It's more like the stuff they make in prison from ketchup packs and gummy bears and mouldy bread, strained through a dirty sock.
    I snorkled my diet soda at that

    The other thing you need to do is get some character sheets and a dice roller if you don't wanna get your own (but you will )

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Janus View Post
    4e actually has some free stuff:
    http://www.wizards.com/dnd/TryDnD.aspx
    ^This is how I first tried it out, combined with the old offline character builder (of which you can still get that original demo on sites like Fileplanet, I believe). The page has "Test Drive" rules, or the basics of the 4e, along with a free adventure (which I hear really isn't very good, but you could always make your own or search online for other free modules).
    You learn something new everyday...

    *scampers off to add it to the list of free stuff in the guide to play by post*

    ...thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lappy9000 View Post
    The other thing you need to do is get some character sheets and a dice roller if you don't wanna get your own (but you will )
    Running with this idea, there's PCGen if a free program for building characters is wanted.
    "Okay, so I'm going to quick draw and dual wield these one-pound caltrops as improvised weapons..."
    ---
    "Oh, hey, look! Blue Eyes Black Lotus!" "Wait what, do you sacrifice a mana to the... Does it like, summon a... What would that card even do!?" "Oh, it's got a four-energy attack. Completely unviable in actual play, so don't worry about it."

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravens_cry View Post
    Try the http://www.d20srd.org/ instead? It's much better organized and doesn't include all that, well, homebrew is too nice a word for it. It's more like the stuff they make in prison from ketchup packs and gummy bears and mouldy bread, strained through a dirty sock.
    Are you implying that the Ultimate Death Sword Annihilator Lord base class is broken?

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    You should be able to run a 3.5 game just fine using just the d20srd - it has spells, monsters, classes, and a basic rundown of actions, and you don't really need any more than that. It doesn't have the experience tables for levelling up, and something else I forget, but some DMs play that by ear anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steward View Post
    Are you implying that the Ultimate Death Sword Annihilator Lord base class is broken?
    Yeah, it's as bad as a Truenamer.
    "Okay, so I'm going to quick draw and dual wield these one-pound caltrops as improvised weapons..."
    ---
    "Oh, hey, look! Blue Eyes Black Lotus!" "Wait what, do you sacrifice a mana to the... Does it like, summon a... What would that card even do!?" "Oh, it's got a four-energy attack. Completely unviable in actual play, so don't worry about it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steward View Post
    Are you implying that the Ultimate Death Sword Annihilator Lord base class is broken?
    Choose your own witty repartee:

    1. No, 'broken' would mean it worked at one time.
    2. "Imply"? No, I do not imply.
    3. Yes.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Heya,

    Been poorer than dirt before, and I vaguely remember being that age a thousand years ago. So I can understand the problem.

    I'm going to try to give you different advice though, rather than repeating what's come before.

    I'm going to recommend that you first find a gaming group, before you do anything about getting ahold of the D&D rules. Mainly because an existing gaming group will likely have a preferred edition (different editions have different rules, as D&D has evolved over time.) And it's entirely possible that the gaming group may not use D&D as such, but one of the other many RPG systems out there; D&D variants like Pathfinder or Castles & Crusades, etc. Having the wrong system or edition may just make things more confusing and frustrating than it needs to be.

    If you explain your situation up-front with them, it is likely you will be able to borrow books when needed, until you can scrape together the cash to get them yourself.

    Once you do get some money, I recommend your first purchase be a set of dice appropriate to the gaming system, instead of a rulebook. It's a thing with gamers that dice are personal to the player and that borrowing is okay, but your own die is preferred.

    Depending on the game system the group prefers, there are also alternatives to physical books. Many systems sell legal .pdfs through special stores likeDriveThru RPGs. Not much D&D stuff there, but if the group is into other systems you might find it there. And from places like DriveThru, it's legal while still being considerably cheaper than physcal books. Again, pay attention to the people in the gaming group because with all the editions and systems rolling around it's really easy to make a mistake and get the wrong rulebook accidentally.
    Last edited by Fhaolan; 2011-07-26 at 01:12 AM.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    On a side note, do you want to specifically play Dungeons and Dragons, or a role playing game? The two are not synonymous, and the second category vastly expands the legally free category.
    I would really like to see a game made by Obryn, Kurald Galain, and Knaight from these forums.

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    Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by bothi73 View Post
    Hey guys, I reeallly realy want to start playin Dungeons and Dragons, but I am , being 14 years old in a state I can't get a job, poor. Is there anyway to find the books REQUIRED TO PLAY Dungeons and Dragons? Perhaps text versions online? Any feedback would be great.
    Like it was suggested, you can pick up the source books second hand.

    3.5 SRD is available at http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=d20/article/srd35 It has everything you need to get you going.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Serpentine View Post
    You should be able to run a 3.5 game just fine using just the d20srd - it has spells, monsters, classes, and a basic rundown of actions, and you don't really need any more than that. It doesn't have the experience tables for levelling up, and something else I forget, but some DMs play that by ear anyway.
    Experience tables are super-easy. The rule: to get from level X to level X+1, you need to gain X*1,000 experience points.
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    #1: Is this a case of you wanting to learn and not knowing what to find, or a case of your parents being actively against? In the latter case, is it because they think it's a foolish waste of money, or because they heard bad things in the 80's and never had reason to reassess? If your parents aren't against, you could probably make a good argument for saving up allowance or getting books as a present.

    #2: Do you know anybody else who'd be interested in gaming? If there's a club at school or something like that, you can probably get away using other peoples books. If you don't know where to find a group, that's going to be more of a problem than not having the books.

    #3: If for some reason people around you think that D&D is bad, Knaight brought up a good point. There are lots of other games with different design goals. Not only can you find some good cheap/free ones, but so long as you play up the "it's like improv theater/collaborative storytelling" and keep away from saying "it's like D&D", people are much more likely to give it a pass.

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    The above poster makes a good point. If you want to get into roleplaying games, but don't want to spend money, there are tons of other free RPGs out there:

    The Free RPG Compendium

    Also, if you do go with D&D 3.5, here's a compilation of adventures, NPCs, and other goodies:

    http://www.dndadventure.com/
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lappy9000 View Post
    I snorkled my diet soda at that
    I've never heard it called that before!
    And just reading it almost made me spray my monitor with coffee...

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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gavinfoxx View Post
    Well... which edition do you want to play? The current one, 4e? The one the Order of the Stick comic is based on, 3.5e?

    Also, there are games out there which are based on D&D 3.5e, but not directly affiliated with Wizards of the Coast which are completely free. Do you have no access to finances at all? That makes things difficult!

    Note that you won't have EVERYTHING you need to run or play a 3.5e game at www.d20srd.org

    But if you can find a used 3.5e D&D player's handbook, that webpage and the 3.5e player's handbook SHOULD be enough to get you going.

    How many people do you have that also want to get into this roleplaying thing with you? D&D is a group activity.
    Sorry for late reply, couldnt find thread. Like I said, I do NOT play dnd, I WANT to play dnd, I put it in general because I do not know which I want to play, and am open to suggestion, thanks
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    Default Re: Free DnD?

    Quote Originally Posted by bothi73 View Post
    Sorry for late reply, couldnt find thread. Like I said, I do NOT play dnd, I WANT to play dnd, I put it in general because I do not know which I want to play, and am open to suggestion, thanks
    Does it absolutely have to be D&D, or can it be other RPGs? Because there is a lot of variety.
    I would really like to see a game made by Obryn, Kurald Galain, and Knaight from these forums.

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