Meet Some of D&D’s Fanciful New Patrons Your Adventurers Could Work For

Will he gather your party, so that they may venture forth?
Will he gather your party, so that they may venture forth?
Image: Andrew Mar/Wizards of the Coast

Look at this merfolk. Look how regal he is. His mer-money? Adventurers, it could be yours.

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In a few weeks, Wizards of the Coast is bringing another major upheaval to the fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons with the arrival of Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything. It’s set to be a radical expansion of new rules for dungeon masters and players alike and will bring some huge options to tabletop groups who incorporate it into their campaigns. Everything from major new subclasses, sweeping changes to make character creation more open than before, to brand new spells and artifacts are included, but Tasha’s is also expounding on a major opportunity to tie together your group’s campaigns in the form of Group Patrons.

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First introduced in the Eberron: Rising from the Last War sourcebook, Group Patrons are optional, powerful characters with the potential to be major movers and shakers in the world of a campaign. They’re characters with the agendas, coin, and influence to either be the unifying force that brings your party of heroes together and guides them from mission to mission or even play a more sinister role should your group decide not to use them. They’re great opportunities to overcome some typical narrative hurdles for players looking to start a fresh campaign.

“I think the thing that’s going to surprise people most is how much liberty they have to customize their character,” D&D lead designer Jeremy Crawford told io9 at the announcement of Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything. “There are a bunch of new feats in this book, and if you combine them with the new class feature options, the new subclasses, the ability to create your own lineage or to customize an existing race, the group patrons, or even the ability to have your character have magic tattoos on their body...combine [them] with the new magic items, new spells. There are even more new levers that people will be able to use to customize their characters than even Xanathar’s had to offer.”

If you want to see a sneak peek of just how Group Patrons could help shape your group’s next adventure, io9 is excited to reveal an exclusive look inside Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything below. It covers the introduction to Patrons, as well as a glimpse of the titular Tasha’s history—and some new artwork from the book!

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Image: Wizards of the Coast
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Image: Wizards of the Coast
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Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything will release both as a hardback book and digitally on November 17.

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James is a News Editor at io9. He wants pictures. Pictures of Spider-Man!

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DISCUSSION

TheGuardLlama
TheGuardLlama

These are cool but what I really want to see from DnD is something more akin to group backgrounds. Like, if my entire party is pirates, soldiers, or city watch investigators, it would be cool to have an option that mechanically replaces the individual backgrounds but gives everyone different bonuses.

For example, I had detective agency as our group patron when they released it in the Eberron book but my players kind of dismissed it over time in favor of stuff that was more mechanically present like their class, race, or individual backgrounds. They also didn’t like having a boss, which is kind of how a lot of these group patrons feel.