Are the 3.5e Dragonlance books third party or official works?

When 3rd edition rolled around, Wizards of the Coast handed the maintenance of the Dragonlance setting to Sovereign Press, the printing company owned by Dragonlance co-founder Margaret Weis. They released several Dragonlance books all the way until the end of their licence, not too long before 4th Edition came rolling around.

But I’m curious if this means that those Dragonlance books are canon. I rarely see them being referenced by guides and people talking about character builds in general, and even then in only a select few cases. which lead me to suspect that the books are not “official” works like the regular, the Forgotten Realms and the Eberron books are.

Is this true? Are they third party works because they’re printed by Sovereign Press rather than Wizards of the Coast? Or are they still official because Sovereign Press was licensed to print them, and they are an established setting and bear the WotC seal of approval?

What do official sources say about player access to the Monster Manual?

The Introduction of the Monster Manual makes it clear several times that it is a book for DMs (MM, p. 4; emphasis mine):

This bestiary is for storytellers and world-builders. If you have ever thought about running a DUNGEONS & DRAGONS game for your friends, either a single night’s adventure or a long-running campaign, this tome contains page after page of inspiration.** […]

If you’re an experienced Dungeon Master (DM)**, a few of the monster write-ups might surprise you, for we’ve gone into the Monster Manuals of yore and discovered some long-lost factoids. […]

The best thing about being a DM is that you get to invent your own fantasy world and bring it to life, and nothing brings a D&D world to life more than the creatures that inhabit it. […]

The Monster Manual is one of three books that form the foundation of the DUNGEONS & DRAGONS game, the other two being the Player’s Handbook and the Dungeon Master’s Guide. The Monster Manual, like the Dungeon Master’s Guide, is a book for DMs.

However, it stops short of saying the Monster Manual is only for DMs, and does not specifically say that it should not be used by players.


Roll20, on the other hand, clearly made a decision to give players extensive access to information from the Monster Manual. Per the Roll20 wiki page for the Monster Manual:

Players can have direct access to the Monster Manual within the In-App Roll20 Compendium. You can share the Monster Manual with Compendium Sharing.


This is not a question about whether such information should be available to players – that is opinion-based and off-topic.

Rather, I am trying to understand:

  1. Besides the statements in the MM itself, what do other official sources say about to what extent the information players have access to the information in the MM?

  2. Did Roll20 ever explain their decision to provide players with full access to MM information?

While this is a list question, it is a bounded list – I am interested in official sources, and officially licensed sources.

It is not a ‘designer’s intent’ question in that I am not interested in opinion, interpretation, or speculation; I am just trying to track down relevant textual quotes about who has legitimate access to the MM information, and under what circumstances.

Is the unofficial Arcane Puppeteer subclass balanced to play with official classes?

One of my players asked me to play this subclass.

It is written there that it has not been playtested, so I am a bit scared to allow him to play that class.
Do you know if it is safe to play? Or more in general, do you have any tip to identify the strength of a class before playing it?

Is there an official explanation for the fluff of why magical healing is less effective on creatures with lots of hit points?

I’m most familiar with D&D 3.5e and 5e, which both have pretty similar ways of describing hit points. The 3.5e SRD says

Hit points mean two things in the game world: the ability to take physical punishment and keep going, and the ability to turn a serious blow into a less serious one.

5e’s Player’s Handbook has a couple bits about hit points, but the most descriptive part is on page 196.

Hit points represent a combination of physical and mental durability, the will to live, and luck.

Hit points are a reasonable abstraction by themselves, since in both the editions I know about, they effectively convey the fact that a tougher or more experienced character is better-able to survive dangerous scenarios. They also allow a novice and an epic hero to spend similar amounts of time recuperating after an adventure (since natural healing scales with the number of Hit Dice a creature has), which makes sense, given what hit points are stated to represent.

However, magical healing (be it via potions or a divine caster’s spells) scales with the caster’s abilities and not with the target’s hit points. This means that, in both editions, an average peasant or a 1st-level fighter who drinks a healing potion will instantly heal from all their injuries and be brought back to full fighting strength. However, an epic dragon-slaying adventurer (or, in a more extreme case, an actual dragon, with its mountains of hit points) would drink the same potion, and only a very small percentage of their vitality would be restored.

What’s with the difference? I know that mechanically it serves as a sink for high-level parties’ gold and spell slots to force players to use stronger magical healing, but narratively, I haven’t been able to find any information on why everybody’s natural healing happens at similar rates, but the efficacy of magical healing is inversely proportional to a target’s natural fortitude and adventuring experience. Did 1st and 2nd editions handle healing differently, or is there something specific about healing potions and magic that causes them to behave this way, or is there simply no explanation given, with the assumption being that "it’s just a mechanical thing, don’t think about it too hard"?

Examples of using Dream spell in official material

The Dream spell gained a lot of power in 5th edition, and while perhaps a bit "meh" at a first glance, on a second thought it seems incredibly powerful for a mere 5th level spell (so needs 9th level caster). As I have this spell for a character I am playing, I want to learn more about the lore surrounding the spell.

Is there any published, official(ish) material which makes use of the Dream spell of 5th edition?

Adventures, campaign/setting books, rule books or plain fiction novels, anything like that counts. If it has been given the permission to use the Dungeons&Dragons logo on the cover, it is official enough. Published as PDF only is ok, as long as it is available for download/purchase.

Note: if there is something in some adventure, please use the appropriate spoiler markup for details.

I don’t think there are many cases, so I hope this isn’t too broad a question. I’m just hoping there is at least something.

Is there an official feat that gives expertise for weapons?

I am playing, as well as about to start DM’ing a one shot, in fifth edition D&D and one of my soon-to-be players has talked to me about making either a Fighter (Samurai) or Monk (Kensei) and was wondering if there was any feat that acted like the Bard’s “Expertise” class feature but for weapons rather then skills.

While I have found some homebrewed content for this, I haven’t found anything official, but I just might not be looking in the right places. Is there something like this or at least a homebrew that is relatively balanced?

Edit: Rather then adding the bonus to attack roll I was looking for something that just effects Damage even if it was a just 1/rest effect. I know that “Great Weapon Master” effect is a -5 to hit, +10 to damage. But I was hoping that there was something like, all attacks deal x2 Proficiency Damage for this turn, 1/rest, so the “Arthur the Archer” example wouldn’t effect his to hit chance just the damage he deals IF he hits.

Is there any official terminology about something like double quotes “” grammar?

In many programming language string is a token.

For example:

 token               ::= '"' string                        | nat   string              ::= string                        | '"'   nat                 ::= digit nat                        | ϵ 

This is a LL(1) grammar for some programming language’s toke grammar.

When parsing a string, there is no need to check follow set, because there is a " at the end of each string.

Comparing with nat, string is more easy to parse.

My question is

Is there any official terminology about this kind of grammar?

Thanks.