First appearing to the mass market fanbase within 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons in Eberron: Rising from the Last War and now in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything, the Artificer is a kind of techno-wizard. For someone without previous connections to Eberron, the setting that exploded on the scene in 3rd edition, the Artificer confused me.
The fiction upon which it is based seemingly is all self-referring, or modern fantastical. There’s a subclass that essentially reads as if it is Iron Man ported back into D&D for example. Whereas most D&D classes stretch into the myths and legends that predate the game itself, the Artificer does not seem to have that convention.
Oddly enough, it was a Christmas movie that reminded me of Artificers within our lore. There are magical techno-wizards within holiday tales. From Christmas elves of tradition, to the inventors of Jingle Jangle, you can find your inspiration for your next Artificer.
These creators take the mundane and imbue it with magic. They create automatons, magically tinker, infuse items, and all the other things you expect from the description of an Artificer.
Masters of invention, artificers use ingenuity and magic to unlock extraordinary capabilities in objects. They see magic as a complex system waiting to be decoded and then harnessed in their spells and inventions. You can find everything you need to play one of these inventors in the next few sections.
Artificers use a variety of tools to channel their arcane power. To cast a spell, an artificer might use alchemist’s supplies to create a potent elixir, calligrapher’s supplies to inscribe a sigil of power, or tinker’s tools to craft a temporary charm. The magic of artificers is tied to their tools and their talents, and few other characters can produce the right tool for a job as well as an artificer.From DnDBeyond.
Opening up a vision of an Artificer to include these amazing gift-gives also helps change how you approach D&D. A character of kindness and generosity, or that thieving Gustafson, expands the stories you can tell. When you visit the village you can brighten the spirits of the community via your infusions and spells.
It may be a Hallmark/Lifetime/FreeForm/UPTv cliche, but there is magic in the holiday season. Incorporating the magic of elves, toys, inventors, Santa, and others into your D&D characters and stories means adding more joy to a game that so often centers violence.
Generosity and joy exist in D&D (even in Barovia). Your Artificer has the power to amplify those feelings (while also being an effective combatant, but there are many places that talk about optimizing in those ways). There are 1,000 times a thousand stories available at any table and any session. Adding a little Christmas to your Artificer is a way to discover more of them.
Be Jeronicus, Jessica, Journey, or even Gustafson. Be Alabaster Snowball, Bushy Evergreen, Pepper Minstix, Shinny Upatree, Sugarplum Mary, or Wunorse Openslae. Roll dice and tell stories about the power of Artifice.