The next D&D movie...


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Dammit KC, you have completely derailed this thread with your undying love for the hobbit films!


I actually thought the third hobbit movie was by far the best of the three. At that point they were done destroying the story and we were under no illusion that any of this was canon. We could just literally sit back, switch off our brains and enjoy the action.

I found the first movie boring me to tears, and the second one as being pretty unimpressive (save for Bilbo's meeting with Smaug). When the third movie rolled out, the facade of following the story was over, and it was just a fantasy action fest.


The third movie's action really bored me. It just sort of dragged. Good action requires stakes.


I would argue that at that point we were watching JUST for those dragged out combat sequences. At this point in the book, I remember the novel just essentially wrapped the battle up in a few pages with little to no descriptions. At this point they could have just wrapped everything up in about 25-30 minutes or throw out all the stops and just go crazy.

They chose to go crazy.


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cmastah wrote:
I would argue that at that point we were watching JUST for those dragged out combat sequences.

I would argue that at that point a lot of us were more watching out of apathetic obligation to finish what we'd started. :P

But hey, some people enjoy bad things things I don't think are good. 'S what keeps life interesting.


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Also, obviously, we can enjoy things we also don't believe are good. I'm not in any way trying to be pretentious about that. I enjoy the hell out of Da Vinci Code and V for Vendetta, and I can't stand those movies on a critical level. ;D


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AS comparisons of the movies to the books, the movies really don't keep to the spirit of the LotR OR the Hobbit books.

If one is a Tolkien purist, they probably hate the movies.

On the otherhand, if you watch the movies as they are, I think they are great. I think there are many kids who couldn't get through the LotR (how many of you were really really bored by the first few chapters of the Fellowship of the Ring...you can admit it) or couldn't really get into the writing style (it is overly passive) that LOVED the movies.

In fact, the movies probably have created a whole new generation of fans.

The LotR movies are great movies, and to me, VERY D&D like. You have the Low levels where they are basically dungeon running in TFotR.

You have their mid levels where they are starting to become the movers and shakers and you have a war campaign in the middle of it in tTT.

And finally you have high level where they get titles, bring down the BBEG, and all the other things of a high level campaign in RotK.

Excellent D&D type movies...if not Tolkien movies.

The same would go for the Hobbit trilogy. If you are overly connected to the book and want it to follow it like a purist, you probably are going to be horrified by it.

On the otherhand, I think it's great fantasy.

You have them all, once again, at the lower levels doing their dungeon running through the Trolls, through the goblin caves, etc.

Then, you have them at a mid level type game where they are still running, but dealing more with mid-level groups like the Elves and finally a DRAGON!

And finally, you have the high level war where they come to their own as leaders and shakers of the world/land.

I think they are both great trilogies for D&D types to be honest. I like them both.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Fairy tales are f$%$in' full of dismembered monsters.

They are, but mostly in small doses, in a poetic justice sort of way. They are also stories to be read. You wouldn't show stuff like that to a child.

I never said the movie is like a kids' story. I said the book was, and the first movie captured that better than the rest.

You did. My apologies.


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At this point I am just crossing my fingers for a solid story, quality acting (with or without A listers), believable FX be it digital or practical and better than TV quality camera work.

I had high hopes for the first one as I am a fan of Jeremy Irons since I saw him in Dead Ringers. To me it looked like he was trying to act badly in Dungeons & Dragons (2000) on purpose.
As for a wishlist of actors im not going to cross my fingers and wont be upset if they dont show up in it but I would like to see Jake Gyllenhaal (ranger type), Mark Dacascos (my first pick to play Drizzt if the character is used), I almost insist Morgan Freeman narrate it if it has a narrator, Alexander Skarsgard play a fighter type, Billy Connolly for a wizard type or even Martin Clunes (Doc Martin), Ian McShane to play some sort of evil antagonist. With makeup just about anyone could play a dwarf, elf, halfling or even gnome but I would like to see Julia Stiles play a gnome for some reason, Chloë Grace Moretz play an elf or halfling, Chris Pratt as a dwarf and I would have to have Clancy Brown do the voice of a beholder or the like. I guess I could go on and on but its counter productive really. Ill just take the first things I listed for this movie.


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GreyWolfLord wrote:
I think they are both great trilogies for D&D types to be honest. I like them both.

Have you read DM of the Rings? It's literally LotR translated into a D&D fantasy camapaign (in a world where Tolkien doesn't exist). It's very funny and does explain some of the random weirdness in the films very well (particularly Elrond showing up in Rohan for 5 seconds in the last movie).

There's a STAR WARS version by a different group call Darths & Droids, which starts off decent but has gone on for way, way too long. DM of the Rings is pretty concise by comparison and funnier.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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Books and movies are two different species, so I don't really expect them to resemble each other a lot.

For example, I really enjoy the movie Starship Troopers even though it isn't very artsy or resemble the novel Starship Troopers at all. It's just a fun pulpy action movie with some hilariously subversive jingoism. I also think the special effects are pretty good, but they let the characters be the stars, not the effects. Somehow, the effects look really realistic to me and don't pull me out of the moment by being too obvious.

I like the LOTR movies much more than the LOTR novels. I know that's blasphemous, and I just don't care. :-P

I've never seen any of the D&D movies beginning to end. Just snippets when flipping through the Syfy channel. Are they on Hulu or Netflix? Are they worth checking out?

Silver Crusade

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I like Darths & Droids.


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SmiloDan wrote:
I've never seen any of the D&D movies beginning to end. Just snippets when flipping through the Syfy channel. Are they on Hulu or Netflix? Are they worth checking out?

First one needs to be watched so you understand what we're dealing with. A baseline of what they thought we wanted to see.

I recommend Vile Book of Darkness because it's actually a little more tolerable than most Syfy originals. It mostly makes sense, no matter how bad the acting/effects are. Also, I just like the main character for whatever reason. It's not very Paladin-esque the way he goes about it, but he was always trying to do the right thing. "People forget how crucial it is to keep trying, even if they screw it up now and then."

Sovereign Court

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SmiloDan wrote:

Books and movies are two different species, so I don't really expect them to resemble each other a lot.

For example, I really enjoy the movie Starship Troopers even though it isn't very artsy or resemble the novel Starship Troopers at all. It's just a fun pulpy action movie with some hilariously subversive jingoism. I also think the special effects are pretty good, but they let the characters be the stars, not the effects. Somehow, the effects look really realistic to me and don't pull me out of the moment by being too obvious.

You have a point about adaptions, however, keep in mind that Paul Verhoven's Starship Troopers was satire of the novel and not meant to be a faithful adaption.

SmiloDan wrote:
I like the LOTR movies much more than the LOTR novels. I know that's blasphemous, and I just don't care. :-P

I can agree with this. When I read the novels many years ago I loved Fellowship. The other two were an absolute chore to finish. I am good without ever having to read them again. I feel the same about the films; loved fellowship the others are boring. I do think they were executed well, considering the material, I just dont care for it.

SmiloDan wrote:
I've never seen any of the D&D movies beginning to end. Just snippets when flipping through the Syfy channel. Are they on Hulu or Netflix? Are they worth checking out?

I wouldn't go out of your way. Book of vile darkness is terrible in a lot of ways, however, I do appreciate the "sheep in wolves clothing" storyline. It was like watching a murderhobo campaign translated to the small screen :)


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The first is, in my opinion, a solid "so bad it's good" flick. The second is kind of fun just for the sake of seeing monsters like liches and darkmantles—it's not that great, but the story is a lot stronger. I've never seen the third.


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They were all bad, all of them.


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Daniel Yeatman wrote:
I like Darths & Droids.

Yeah, I have no idea what's up with Werthead's obviously wrong opinion! ;P

(^This^ is a joke; the rest is more sincere.)

I will forever be thankful to DM of The Rings because it created a new genre; but, though it's funny, many of the others that spawned because of it - including and especially Darths & Droids - have significantly superior writing, humor, editing, style, and skill. This is not because DMOTR is bad - again, it's pretty funny; but D&D is better.


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DM of the Rings forever has a place in my heart for the "walking stick" scene when they're trying to get into see Theoden. That and all the GMNPC Gandalf jokes.

But yes, Darths & Droids is better.


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They are very different comics. DM of the Rings makes me laugh way, way more, and harder, but Darths and Droids—particularly in the first four movies—has stronger character growth, since it's a more sincere story. I think it lost some direction in the second trilogy, though. It moved from majority gaming jokes to just sort of, "Haha, look, it's like the original story but we changed plot details". It starts to read more like alternate universe fanfic than parody. That's not inherently bad, but it's not what I came to Darths and Droids for.

The visuals are technically better, though DM of the Rings has vastly superior faces—mostly by virtue of having better films (on a screencap level, I mean) to work with.


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All this said, I think that jumping in and just casually branding one as better than the other is rather petty and limited. That's not the shape critical discourse should take—it's not a damn contest. I can like both.


Of course. I think that at least three of us do, in fact, like both.

Just because we like more than one doesn't mean we can't have (conflicting) preferences and opinions about which is better, however!

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

I won't watch them again, but I'm glad someone tried and made these movies.


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The best Hobbit movie is the Rankin-Bass one.

No. Shut up. I'll fight you on this.


After perusing it's challengers, there really is t a way you could be wrong (horrible, hideous nightmare-elves aside)...


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Wow. And here I thought I had ranks in thread disruption...

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
The best Hobbit movie is the Rankin-Bass one.

The best Hobbit movie is yet to be filmed.

Quote:
No. Shut up. I'll fight you on this.

Right back at you.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

It's not like the book was all that good to begin with. :-)


DM of the Rings is definitely funnier and does a very good job of skewering a lot of RPG tropes.

Darths and Droids gives us a better feeling of the people behind the characters. But once it moved out of the prequels and into the original trilogy, it stopped being funny. I can't remember the last time it honestly made me laugh.

I do find it amusing trying to figure out what other movies are being referenced when the players talk about other campaigns they played in.


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CBDunkerson wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
The best Hobbit movie is the Rankin-Bass one.

The best Hobbit movie is yet to be filmed.

Quote:
No. Shut up. I'll fight you on this.
Right back at you.

Really? Who's planning to film it?

Or are you just confusing "best of the lot" with "critically good"?


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Alright so I guess no Ravenloft huh?


That was a great try, Thomas! Let's see if it works!

But I'll try to help you: nah... but I'd be all over the idea of either Dark Sun or Eberron or Forgotten Realms or Starjammer.

Greyhawk is totally acceptable.

Ravenloft is cool, but just doesn't spark the concept of D&D - it feels more like a generic set of Gothic settings... which is pretty much exactly what it is supposed to be.

EDIT: Campaign Settings :)


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Greyhawk would be nice if they did Age of Worms in my mind...

But Dark Sun seems more likely with FR being the lead it seems.


A gothic horror fantasy setting would be an interesting setup for a modern movie, actually.


Maybe but only if they had a kind of Dungeons and Dragons ride type deal...


Thomas Seitz wrote:
Maybe but only if they had a kind of Dungeons and Dragons ride type deal...

So would Venger be Dungeonmasters son or Strahd's?


I think Venger would be Strahd's thrall myself. But half demon/half vampire sorcerer.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:

The Hobbit is very different in style and atmosphere from Lord of the Rings. It was always a much less serious story—and a story for kids, not just adults and kids who like etymology. Jackson's greatest mistake was in forgetting that in the next two movies. Also, in making two more movies at all, but that wasn't his call.

It wasn't so much a mistake but a deliberate change to both 1) Use the formula that had won him success in the LOTR movie trilogy, and 2) That a movie targeted for children wasn't going to bring in enough money to pay the water boy, much less pay for the production values that went into them, and 3) 3 movies is 2 movies more profit.


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Quote:
Alright so I guess no Ravenloft huh?

Potentially, if they could work a bit more of a D&D-style feel to it otherwise audiences would be very confused. Perhaps tap the Lord Soth story and tie it into Dragonlance? However, they could do Gothic Earth instead as a stand-alone horror spin-off thing.

Thomas Seitz wrote:

Greyhawk would be nice if they did Age of Worms in my mind...

But Dark Sun seems more likely with FR being the lead it seems.

Well, Forgotten Realms is the setting for the movie that's actually greenlit and in pre-production right now, so that'll be coming up first. That was always going to happen (assuming they didn't just go generic), due to the setting's overwhelming popularity.

The classic Dragonlance saga would be a likely follow-up, but Dark Sun I can see also working if they decided to post-apocalyptic and Eberron if they wanted to do steam/magepunk.

Greyhawk I suspect will be on the backburner, due to the perceived (if mostly superficial) medieval fantasy similarity to Forgotten Realms and Dragonlance.

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Maybe (hopefully?) the D&D movies will be as successful and great as the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

Then we can have tons of D&D movies! Like Dragonlance, Azure Bonds, etc.

Silver Crusade

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I love Forgotten Realms too much to want them to butcher it with some awful film. Heck, after 3.5 the setting's writing took a steep nosedive, and Salvatore/Greenwood have only (relatively) recently managed to wrestle it even partway back. It's been years and I'm still salty about the Spellplague.

Eberron would probably make a great film though, it has a skyships and prophecy-obsessed dragons and the Lord of Blades could be the badguy--the earnest monologue about how the warforged need to throw off the shackles of their creator basically writes itself, although is probably too similar to the latest Avenges to work. Lords of Dust, then, I've always thought urbane tiger-fiends would be phenomenal BBEGs.

Sovereign Court

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SmiloDan wrote:

Maybe (hopefully?) the D&D movies will be as successful and great as the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

Then we can have tons of D&D movies! Like Dragonlance, Azure Bonds, etc.

I think the key is for Hasbro to make a film that truly stands out from the rest. I imagine this is incredibly difficult to do with the fantasy genre based on my experience with it.

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I think the keys are:

1. Don't treat serious "Fantasy" as childish "make believe."

2. Give magic rules and follow them. Don't make magic just a bunch of wishing.

3. Treat it more as an action adventure film instead of a special effects extravaganza. Look to Indiana Jones for inspiration. Also, heist movies (Gather the team, plan the scheme, go get the McGuffin).


Pan wrote:
SmiloDan wrote:

Maybe (hopefully?) the D&D movies will be as successful and great as the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

Then we can have tons of D&D movies! Like Dragonlance, Azure Bonds, etc.

I think the key is for Hasbro to make a film that truly stands out from the rest. I imagine this is incredibly difficult to do with the fantasy genre based on my experience with it.

The problem is not so much the fantasy genre, but the movies based on a game genre.

Because face it ... what does "Dungeons and Dragons" do to you as a story title compared to "Lord of the Rings", Harry Potter "X of Y" or even freaking "Mulan"?


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Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
Pan wrote:
SmiloDan wrote:

Maybe (hopefully?) the D&D movies will be as successful and great as the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

Then we can have tons of D&D movies! Like Dragonlance, Azure Bonds, etc.

I think the key is for Hasbro to make a film that truly stands out from the rest. I imagine this is incredibly difficult to do with the fantasy genre based on my experience with it.

The problem is not so much the fantasy genre, but the movies based on a game genre.

Because face it ... what does "Dungeons and Dragons" do to you as a story title compared to "Lord of the Rings", Harry Potter "X of Y" or even freaking "Mulan"?

Well, Mulan didn't do too much at first. "Disney" counted though.

Sovereign Court

Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
Pan wrote:
SmiloDan wrote:

Maybe (hopefully?) the D&D movies will be as successful and great as the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

Then we can have tons of D&D movies! Like Dragonlance, Azure Bonds, etc.

I think the key is for Hasbro to make a film that truly stands out from the rest. I imagine this is incredibly difficult to do with the fantasy genre based on my experience with it.

The problem is not so much the fantasy genre, but the movies based on a game genre.

Because face it ... what does "Dungeons and Dragons" do to you as a story title compared to "Lord of the Rings", Harry Potter "X of Y" or even freaking "Mulan"?

I think making the film based on the game genre is what sunk the first film. The other two didnt go that route; they just sucked.

I stand by my comment most fantasy films blend together. There isn't a whole lot separating them. Lord and Potter did well because they had huge reader followings that the fantasy genre doesn't typically command. I had no idea what the hell Willow was but I still enjoyed it. Your Highness didn't mean anything but didn't stop it from being a a decent fantasy comedy. Pathfinder with apparently Karl Urban though, did anyone see it? Trick for Hasbro is creating a brand for D&D that does mean something to folks. I think it's a task that few are up to.


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Pan wrote:
Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
Pan wrote:
SmiloDan wrote:

Maybe (hopefully?) the D&D movies will be as successful and great as the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

Then we can have tons of D&D movies! Like Dragonlance, Azure Bonds, etc.

I think the key is for Hasbro to make a film that truly stands out from the rest. I imagine this is incredibly difficult to do with the fantasy genre based on my experience with it.

The problem is not so much the fantasy genre, but the movies based on a game genre.

Because face it ... what does "Dungeons and Dragons" do to you as a story title compared to "Lord of the Rings", Harry Potter "X of Y" or even freaking "Mulan"?

I think making the film based on the game genre is what sunk the first film. The other two didnt go that route; they just sucked.

I stand by my comment most fantasy films blend together. There isn't a whole lot separating them. Lord and Potter did well because they had huge reader followings that the fantasy genre doesn't typically command. I had no idea what the hell Willow was but I still enjoyed it. Your Highness didn't mean anything but didn't stop it from being a a decent fantasy comedy. Pathfinder with apparently Karl Urban though, did anyone see it? Trick for Hasbro is creating a brand for D&D that does mean something to folks. I think it's a task that few are up to.

I still think the better way to do D&D is as a series - highlight the party aspect and the power growth over a couple of seasons.

I don't think the special effects are quite cheap enough/good enough yet to pull it off on that kind of budget, but series that went from gritty kobolds in the sewers to dragons & planar adventures over three or four seasons would capture D&D better than anything you could do in a single movie.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
The third movie's action really bored me. It just sort of dragged. Good action requires stakes.

Agreed. Much if the emotional impact had been lost by then and with it, the sense that anything important was much at stake.

I would add that for some if us the butchering of the thing up until that point made the action even more exasperating and tedious. Like finding a beloved pet had been run over and then trying to salvage the situation by "enjoying" watching the corpse being dragged around by a car

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4 seasons of D&D:

Season 1: Levels 1-4 (6 episodes)
Season 2: Levels 5-10 (22 episodes)
Season 3: Levels 11-16 (13 episodes)
Season 4: Levels 17-20 (6 episodes)


SmiloDan wrote:

4 seasons of D&D:

Season 1: Levels 1-4 (6 episodes)
Season 2: Levels 5-10 (22 episodes)
Season 3: Levels 11-16 (13 episodes)
Season 4: Levels 17-20 (6 episodes)
And a Movie: Level 21+

I have no real idea why you split the seasons up so unevenly in number of episodes, aside from the last (it'd be hard to spend all that time on such high levels in a television show for long).

I fancy the Farscape and Roswell conceit of longer episodes - I'd even go so far as to suggest Sherlock-style feature length episodes, but I feel quite strongly that it would basically be impossible to get green-lit, because of the probably-staggering special effects budget (especially in later seasons).

Make a deal with a thing like Netflix or Hulu or Amazon Prime, and you suddenly have a vast potential audience with a solid possibility of getting your endorsement and budget. If you managed to sell and snag a partnership with a specific country or region for a Season (hypothetically possible with how well New Zealand benefited from Lord of the Rings*), which could help with location costs - possible different places (maybe one primary location per season, or something).

Regardless, almost certainly have a set of interlocking villains.

As a random set of examples: have the first villain over Season One, but set up hints early on about the villain in Season Two; have Season Two and Season Three villains be part of a united plot - so defeating S2 Villain leaves S3 Villain (who possibly brings back S1 Villain somehow, maybe even as a powerful undead mid-season miniboss), which is all shown to be part of the scheme of S4 Villain (perhaps even one of several such schemes), who must then be thwarted in that season.

The film could delve into their quest to destroy the root of everything: the demon lord, infernal duke, or even god who inspired S4 Villain, and who assisted it at every step along the way.

All that said, I think a film could well make a solid D&D experience - but only if it was focused, and was, in effect, a "module" experience. You could not bring out a Campaign in a film - though many film series do this well enough already (like Die Hard - one of the finest sets of D&D-like films ever made, as McLain gains levels over the course of the series).

* It should be painfully obvious that whatever kind of show this is, it will not benefit the region nearly as much as LotR did New Zealand - nothing will quite capture and bottle that lightning again, I think... at least not for a long time. But there could still be very solid benefits based on such a partnership.

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Tacticslion wrote:
SmiloDan wrote:

4 seasons of D&D:

Season 1: Levels 1-4 (6 episodes)
Season 2: Levels 5-10 (22 episodes)
Season 3: Levels 11-16 (13 episodes)
Season 4: Levels 17-20 (6 episodes)
And a Movie: Level 21+

I have no real idea why you split the seasons up so unevenly in number of episodes, aside from the last (it'd be hard to spend all that time on such high levels in a television show for long).

It's loosely based on the XP track for 5th Edition.

Really quick low level advancement (especially levels 1 & 2), slower advancement in the "sweet spot" (levels 5-10), then relatively fast advancement for the upper levels (lets get to level 20 already!).

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