By some miracle we haven’t reported on this yet – probably because the title Arcana Unearthed: The Malhavoc Handbook kinda “buries the lead,” as they say in our country. ‘Cause, see, what it really is, is much more interesting than it sounds. It’s essentially the Player’s Handbook, OGL-happy and free of a D20 logo, with the standard-issue races and classes replaced with new ones. Not Monte Cook’s take on the old ones – those revisions are scattered throughout his D20 work – but new archetypes to replace the old. Fae, giants, and wacky new races instead of standard-issue elves and dwarves and such. Crazy swashbucklers and intense martial monks to replace ordinary rangers and fighters. The same framework as standard D&D, but with new playing pieces.
Me, I think this sounds pretty entertaining, but I wonder if it’ll be properly marketed, or even deemed necessary by most gamers. Here’s a FAQ (good readin’), a column about it (more good readin’), and the weekly design diary (lotsa good readin’). When you’ve had your fill of all that, weigh in below – good idea, bad idea?