The Dragon Age TTRP Is the Perfect DnD Alternative

The cover art of Dragon Age II game

Dragon Age is an amazing video game series, but it is also one of the best tabletop RPGs. It is perfect for anyone looking for a D&D alternative.

BioWare has made some of the best RPGs of all time. Games like Mass Effect and Dragon Age defined a generation of gamers, and they also stood as pinnacles in their respective subgenres. Of course, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is one of, if not, the greatest Star Wars game ever made. Even though each of these games has a myriad of differences between them, there is one key element that connects them. Many of BioWare’s games (especially the studio’s earlier conceptions) contain a deep-rooted love of Dungeons & Dragons. Even after the studio stopped working directly on D&D games, its RPGs still brimmed with influence from the classic tabletop franchise.

When the studio eventually created its own fantasy series with Dragon Age, it only made sense to finally make the dive into tabletop gaming. The Dragon Age tabletop RPG was released in 2010, and it is naturally set in the world of Thedas, as is the video game series. While it would have been easy for BioWare to create a simple tabletop adventure spin-off of Dragon Age, the final version is an incredibly competent tabletop RPG. At a time when many fans are looking for Dungeons & Dragons alternatives, they would do well to consider this incredible tabletop game.

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The Stunt System Sets Dragon Age Apart from Other TTRPGs

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Dragon Age Tabletop RPG

Like most tabletop RPGs, most of Dragon Age‘s core gameplay revolves around rolling dice. Instead of using the D20 system or another related system, Dragon Age utilizes the Stunt system and Dragon Die system. In Dragon Age, players roll three six-sided dice (two normal D6s and one D6 of a different color) to resolve conflicts and checks instead of a 20-sided die like other tabletop RPGs. When a player rolls doubles, they get to spend “stunt points” to perform cool, special actions on top of whatever the player was trying to do initially. The extra action is determined by the third die of a different color referred to as the Dragon Die. Whichever number the Dragon Die lands on when rolling doubles determines how powerful or skillful the extra action is.

This system not only separates it from the countless other tabletop RPG dice systems but also excels at making players feel like awesome fantasy adventurers. The use of six-sided dice as opposed to a D20 can also reduce the confusion that some new players have when looking at Dungeons & Dragons‘ required dice. The Dragon Die creates a fun and engaging reward that happens more frequently than rolling a natural 20 does in D&D, and it has layers of effectiveness that keep things balanced and interesting. This system alone makes Dragon Age a stand-out tabletop RPG, but it isn’t the only thing that makes it an excellent alternative to D&D.

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Dragon Age Has Plenty of Engaging Lore for Players to Discover

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>A group of characters play a tabletop rpg

Popular tabletop RPGs like Pathfinder and Dungeons & Dragons have a lot of lore to build on, and there are countless stories to experience in the Forgotten Realms. However, the vast majority of players who dive into those games play in worlds and stories of their own creation. Some of the stories and lore of D&D and other tabletop RPGs can be intimidating to players if they are not already familiar with them. While Dragon Age doesn’t escape this problem entirely, the lore is fairly welcoming to players, and it is easy for players to jump into without knowing too much. This is partially due to the series only being around 10 years old at this point. Regardless, the streamlined character sheets and deceptively simple Stunt system make it equally easy for GMs to take the game and craft their own story within it as well.

Dragon Age‘s tabletop RPG takes the fantastic BioWare video game series and converts it into an equally fantastic tabletop RPG. It makes it easy for new players to hop into the adventure, and its Stunt system is one of the best gameplay systems in any tabletop game. BioWare’s trademark storytelling is also present for any players looking to follow the lore of the world of Thedas. For any player who feels burned by Wizards of the Coast or is just searching for a great D&D alternative, the Dragon Age tabletop RPG is absolutely worth checking out or revisiting.


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