Unboxing the New D&D Red Box

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Unboxing the New D&D Red Box

In a reboot of the old school, Wizard of the Coast's new Red Box Starter Set aims to introduce new players to D&D.

Dungeons & Dragons released the Red Box starter set in 1983 edited by Frank Mentzer. More streamlined and intuitive than the previous Red Box by Robert Moldvay and the blue-boxed starter set from 1977, the Mentzer Red Box introduced hundreds of thousands of people to tabletop roleplaying. For many, that product captured their imaginations and led to a decades-long love affair with fantasy roleplaying.

Since then, Dungeons & Dragons has passed through many corporate hands and several revisions to its rules. Now in its 4th Edition and published by Wizards of the Coast, a subsidiary of Hasbro, D&D still aims to capture the wonder felt when children first opened that crimson box adorned by a dragon and fighting man so long ago.

The new 4th Edition Red Box has everything that you need to run and play a game of Dungeons & Dragons, from dice to maps to character sheets and tokens. Wizards was kind enough to send along some Funyons and Cheetos, as well as a few miniatures and graph paper, all essential tools to any good tabletop game.

Take a look at the photos of our unboxing of The Escapist's Red Box. The plan is to lock some of our less-experienced gaming employees in a room with the Red Box, the Funyons and some foam swords. Four hours later, they will have become grognards like the rest of us.

Either that, or they will be dead from Funyon poisoning.


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Cheetos ? Really ? Are they reinforcing the stereotype on purpose ?

Oooh. All parcels should come with snacks. Maybe the next Fallout will come with a tin of out of date beans and a bottle of flat cola.

thenumberthirteen:
Oooh. All parcels should come with snacks. Maybe the next Fallout will come with a tin of out of date beans and a bottle of flat cola.

The New Vegas collectors' edition comes with stimpaks, but sadly these are in-game. Shame, as I was looking forward to hurling myself off a cliff and then injecting myself with a tiny syringe to heal all my broken bones instantly.

OT: Are the Cheetos there to serve as impromptu monster hordes when peoples' creativity/patience/Warhammer kits run out?

Squeeeeeee....I actually have the ORIGINAL('83) of that somewhere. Play Keep on the Borderlands.

But where the hell is the Irn Bru/Vimto(UK)/Mountain Dew(US)?

I've been DMing 4e for a while now, I can't wait for a follow up article on this to see how the staff at the escapist likes DnD 4e.

Any game nights are nothing without a few beers and chips. I always compare them with poker nights, same thing different game.

The art style seems to have gone very retro, kind of back to the original TSR version. Looking good. Haven't tried v4 though so can't comment on the contents.

Cheetos..... really? Don't they know what that orange powder crap will destroy anything of pnp gaming value?

I am all for snacks at the gaming table (and a goodly amount of booze) but WotC should have learned by now that snacks hard candy, jellybeans (of the belly variety) red vines and trucker style caffeine pills...... well perhaps not the pills.

I am happy for this redbox though. PnP gaming is still going strong.

Thats alot of crisps...what they saying about people? lol

Still, very nice!

I love the old box style, It's the dnd I played as a kid.

They can also ram the cheetos up their arse. Why not add same wizard outfits, moutain dew, and pimple cream while they are at it... your first rule of marketing don't insult your buyer by calling them a nerd.

How bout a Madden 12 game collectors set with hotwings, beer, a fine for beating your wife and report from school saying your kid is a mental wreck cause daddy forced them to far in sports because dad played and failed to make the pros? Oh and a stained wife beater and a failed fantasy football team list...

Come on, sterotypes bad.
I used to snack on beef jerky my friends dad made... lot healthier.

Still to this day I have memories of playing these games, more of kicking out fake jocks who wanted to play to make fun of us, a selection of real cute girls who joined, and normally a bottle o rum to make it more interesting gaming party.

All this in the days of atari...

Croaker42:
Cheetos..... really? Don't they know what that orange powder crap will destroy anything of pnp gaming value?

I am all for snacks at the gaming table (and a goodly amount of booze) but WotC should have learned by now that snacks hard candy, jellybeans (of the belly variety) red vines and trucker style caffeine pills...... well perhaps not the pills.

I am happy for this redbox though. PnP gaming is still going strong.

Problem solved and speaking from experience it actually does work quite well.

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want want want want WAAAAAANT!

This could be just to thing to rekindle my broken DnD spirit! well that and booze.

HA! I actually saw that in Borders last night. Is this a re-release of first edition or is this the 4th edition rules packaged retro style? I couldn't really tell from the article. I might actually have to go out and get this.

the red box is 4ed right?

kintaris:

thenumberthirteen:
Oooh. All parcels should come with snacks. Maybe the next Fallout will come with a tin of out of date beans and a bottle of flat cola.

The New Vegas collectors' edition comes with stimpaks, but sadly these are in-game. Shame, as I was looking forward to hurling myself off a cliff and then injecting myself with a tiny syringe to heal all my broken bones instantly.

OT: Are the Cheetos there to serve as impromptu monster hordes when peoples' creativity/patience/Warhammer kits run out?

Ooo... Could always use a few starter Stimpacks in Fallout ^_^

And in responce to your cheeto's/warhammer comment: A true Warhammer player has too many armies to run out of figures. However, in the very rare case that does happen, that's where the lego's come in

Damn it now I want it! Unfourtunetly there are no DnD stocked shops (barring a Waterstones but I bought most of their stuff and they don't restock) Feels bad man.

psrdirector:
the red box is 4ed right?

It's 4ed that's easier to pickup and play. maybe call it 4.1ed

Irony's Acolyte:
HA! I actually saw that in Borders last night. Is this a re-release of first edition or is this the 4th edition rules packaged retro style? I couldn't really tell from the article. I might actually have to go out and get this.

Its 4E packaged retro with some slightly simplified and modified rules. Or so they claim. Many people are thinking its an update or change to 4E ie 4.5E, but I don't really see it and Wizards is saying that it is definitely not 4.5E. Over all it looks like it will be fun, though I've only read through it a bit, haven't actually sat down and played it yet.

There is a starter set? I want to play some D&D! The only thing I want to know is: Are you allowed to create your own stories and rules as a DM?

Greg Tito:
Either that, or they will be dead from Funyon poisoning.

No, they will be dead from 4th Ed poisoning...

Elementlmage:

Greg Tito:
Either that, or they will be dead from Funyon poisoning.

No, they will be dead from 4th Ed poisoning...

No no no. 4e is a vital vitamin.

The damn cover with the dragon about to get his shit ruined by glowey sword guy makes me shed a tear for my wasted youth. I must have played through the tutorial and the included solo adventure at least 500 times when it first came out.

Thunderdelve Mountain was the greatest solo adventure ever devised.

Sadly I had no friends to play dnd with until high school.

Y'know, I'm a hardcore 3.X/Pathfinder Grognard, but even I have to give props where they are due. This... is pretty damn cool. I might need to look into picking it up and finally giving the damn thing a shot.

Folio:
There is a starter set? I want to play some D&D! The only thing I want to know is: Are you allowed to create your own stories and rules as a DM?

Yes...the DM is God of the world. However I would strongly suggest running some pre-generated modules first to get a feel for the whole thing. Worldbuilding is really fun but also a metric assload of work. However when it works the payoff is huge.

As an example, for my most successful campaign I worked for about 1 month of 20+ hour weeks on the world and another month of 20+ hour weeks on the first dungeon. We got nearly a year of play out of that campaign and it was a great time.

To do it right expect to spend 2 hours outside of the game for every hour of gameplay. So for a typical game group meeting once a week for 4 hours, you should be spending at least 8 hours in prep work.

Not to scare you off because DMing is a ton of fun, it is just also a lot of work to do right.

Good luck in your adventures!

Aww, you mean the dice that come with the set don't have to be colored in with a crayon, then the excess wax wiped off with a tissue?

I wish I was an intern for this I want to play some D&D but not really eat Funions they are good but they gross me out a bit.

How much does this thing cost? Ive always wanted to play it but ever since ive started watching "i hit it with my axe" i am seriously considereing it.

I am amused.

I will now think about buying it.

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

As a wargamer I have to take issue with a DnDer's use of the word "grognard".

The_root_of_all_evil:
Squeeeeeee....I actually have the ORIGINAL('83) of that somewhere. Play Keep on the Borderlands.

But where the hell is the Irn Bru/Vimto(UK)/Mountain Dew(US)?

Me too matey, Ah a new generation will be able to understand why I scream THACO at them. Bloody kids!

electric discordian:

The_root_of_all_evil:
Squeeeeeee....I actually have the ORIGINAL('83) of that somewhere. Play Keep on the Borderlands.

But where the hell is the Irn Bru/Vimto(UK)/Mountain Dew(US)?

Me too matey, Ah a new generation will be able to understand why I scream THACO at them. Bloody kids!

What's your character class?
I'm a Dwarf.
No, not your race, your class?
I'm a Dwarf. I Dwarf.

The_root_of_all_evil:

electric discordian:

The_root_of_all_evil:
Squeeeeeee....I actually have the ORIGINAL('83) of that somewhere. Play Keep on the Borderlands.

But where the hell is the Irn Bru/Vimto(UK)/Mountain Dew(US)?

Me too matey, Ah a new generation will be able to understand why I scream THACO at them. Bloody kids!

What's your character class?
I'm a Dwarf.
No, not your race, your class?
I'm a Dwarf. I Dwarf.

Man I feel your pain! I have the rule cyclopedia as well the one which has every original DnD item, in its first printing. It at 1990 is still older than some of my gaming group!

As it turns out it isn't the original and best but this 4e thingie which is just Wow the roleplaying game repackaged!

Using the new system you can make any Wow character class identically! With no change whatsoever!

I still have my original D&D red box from when I first got into gaming in the late 70s. Oh, those were the days...

electric discordian:

The_root_of_all_evil:
Squeeeeeee....I actually have the ORIGINAL('83) of that somewhere. Play Keep on the Borderlands.

But where the hell is the Irn Bru/Vimto(UK)/Mountain Dew(US)?

Me too matey, Ah a new generation will be able to understand why I scream THACO at them. Bloody kids!

some people think it's a tasty mexican treat, others know how squishy it is(or you are). +1 longsword for the win!

electric discordian:

The_root_of_all_evil:

electric discordian:

The_root_of_all_evil:
Squeeeeeee....I actually have the ORIGINAL('83) of that somewhere. Play Keep on the Borderlands.

But where the hell is the Irn Bru/Vimto(UK)/Mountain Dew(US)?

Me too matey, Ah a new generation will be able to understand why I scream THACO at them. Bloody kids!

What's your character class?
I'm a Dwarf.
No, not your race, your class?
I'm a Dwarf. I Dwarf.

Man I feel your pain! I have the rule cyclopedia as well the one which has every original DnD item, in its first printing. It at 1990 is still older than some of my gaming group!

As it turns out it isn't the original and best but this 4e thingie which is just Wow the roleplaying game repackaged!

Using the new system you can make any Wow character class identically! With no change whatsoever!

Ok the edition wars are over man. 4e <> Wow. Love it or hate it, they made the game more accessible (and dare i say enjoyable).

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