Friday, June 28, 2024


I was going to throw this in a random Discord channel. Then I remembered I have a dedicated place for screaming into the void.

This is an ugly post. If you respect me as a creative, maybe skip this one.

I hate DC20. I hate the name. I hate the branding. I hate the D&Dtuber hype (with names like MrDragonGuy and RollToSeduceTheBarmaid, who make Youtube shorts about horny bards and stupid barbarians in the year of our lord 2024) calling it "the Next Great Evolution in Fantasy TTRPGs".

That's a real thing someone said about DC-fucking-20, the trumped-up 5e homebrew that needs $1.8 million (at time of writing) to be printed out and distributed in hardcover, rather than posted as a PDF on Reddit like everyone else. And yes, it is just a homebrew of 5e: nothing more, nothing less. Wow, you can have four actions? That's so many! Clearly you needed 158 fucking pages (in the playtest rules, at time of writing) to implement this groundbreaking new change in your home game, because if the book isn't heavy enough to bludgeon your resident rules lawyer with (rules lawyers, amirite guys?) no one at your table will respect you enough to take your word over Jeremy Crawford's.

I hate DC20 so fucking much. I hate it even more than D&D 5.5e. Yes, WotC is adding nothing substantial -- the few new ideas were panned in the Unearthed Arcana and scrubbed from all the early drafts -- but at least the artists get to have fun. The over-the-top glitzy drip and rainbow hair and intersectional art direction add more to The Discourse than anything DC20 can come up with. I hate DC20 so much I had to say something nice about 5.5e. I hate it. I hate it.

"Wow! This fantasy RPG has a Fighter class and a Barbarian class???? Take my money!!!1!" It's the same shit, over and over and over. Make it different, but not so much that it alienates the mass market. Change the buzzwords, but not so much that it's annoying to switch systems. We need 1:1 conversions. We need reskins. We need the same, but different.

by Sinobice
I have nothing but respect for the artists who work on Fixing RWBY. It's cool as hell that they get to collaborate on such a huge community project.

I hate Fixing RWBY. 

RWBY is a show about anime girls fighting monsters with gun-scythes which eventually eclipsed everything RoosterTeeth ever did in popularity despite its absolute train wreck of a narrative. Youtuber Celtic Phoenix love-hates this show (like most of the fandom) and decided to externalize their frustration with the story in a video series recapping the things they would change about the story, with some additional voiceover, costume redesigns, etc. etc.

I hate the format of Fixing RWBY. For all its flaws, RWBY proper was initially conceived as a series of anime fight scenes. It had a purpose, on some level. FRWBY isn't about fight scenes -- it can't be, there's no animators. FRWBY is about dialogue and body language and plot holes. "Weiss interrupts Blake." "Blake scolds Yang." "Ruby cries out in pain." Dialogue without voice acting. Body language without animation. Plot holes without a plot. It's all hollow. It's a fanfic presented in video format so you can't skip past the boring or uncomfortable parts of the "fixed" story.

I hate the story of Fixing RWBY. I hate the side characters. I hate the four or five generic magic systems. I hate the lore. I hate the Faunus racism storyline. These are all things that I hated about RWBY proper as well, but they are here because they are the things that needed to be "fixed". Nothing can be removed, or the work would have no reason to exist. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it.

This is the last thing I drew. I hate it.

I wanted to like DC20. I got excited seeing MCDM and Daggerheart pop up in the scene, and for some reason had high hopes for DC20. I hate DC20 so much more than 5.5e, because I had zero expectations for Wizards of the Coast. Why why why why why is DC20 so utterly creatively bankrupt? Why does it reek of a homebrew I'd download (for free) from Reddit? Why does it feel like it wouldn't, or couldn't, exist without 5.5e? Why is it empty? Why is it hollow?

I've been going thru something in real life. Not sure what that something is, but it's lead to me play a lot of Elden Ring and wonder whether I have undiagnosed ADHD. Anyway, I used to write RWBY what-if fanfiction. I still write fantasy heartbreaker shit. I am deeply interested in what DC20 and FRWBY have to offer. But when I engage with them, they give me the same feeling I get when I stop playing Elden Ring and turn to my own rpg content.

Being in a creative drought can cast old work in a poor light. Looking at things I've written, I see Dark Souls and Centerra and Qal Ashen. I see other authors doing it better, and I start to feel like a shade. Is it easier to hate DC20 because I've seen other people be more creative? Is it easier because I see myself in it, as it retreads old ground and pumps itself up like a "Next Great Evolution"? Why is the world so lazy? Why am I lazy? Why can't I focus on any one project? Why can't I just be creative? Why did I stop drawing? Why did I start looking for creative inspiration on fucking Youtube?

As I am writing this, I am having one of those pseudo-out-of-body experiences where my field of vision is too zoomed out, the laptop is too far away, and everything echoes too much. I've had these since I was 10, and I don't know what causes them. Bad posture, I think. It scares the shit out of me when it happens.

I stand on the shoulders of giants, and I am afraid of heights.


TL;DR DC20 mid, check out this cool orc:

from the 5.5e ranger video thing


  1. Oh haha it's kind of like pathfinder but for 5e instead of 3.5

    Didn't really like elden ring in hindsight. Still beat it, Malenia and all, but most of the time was just riding around with the "Brave, brave Sir Robin" song from Monty Python and the Holy Grail on repeat in my head.

    Sounds like you need to get out of your own head. Consider reading a long novel - not fanfiction! - or volunteering or something

    1. You're totally right. Too many un-dog-eared books in this house

  2. If it makes you feel better, your blog has been one of my favorites for years.

    You're probably one of the most genuinely creative writers in the

    What creative projects are you stalled on?

  3. I wanted to chime in as well, to say that your writing routinely inspires me to write & create, and I consider your blog to sit among my very favourites.