Wizards of the Coast has plans to address cultural stereotypes in the next iteration of its DnD classes, according to reports from the D&D content creator summit held on April 3. Freelance tabletop writer and cultural consultant Daniel Kwan shared quotes from lead rules designer Jeremy Crawford, who answered Kwan’s question about Asian stereotypes inherent in the Monk 5e class.
“I asked a question about the Monk, a class that has relied on Asian stereotypes”, Kwan writes in a Substack post from April 4. According to Kwan, Crawford says Wizards’ approach to revising the Monk “is connected to how we are handling all of the classes”. “The Monk absolutely has had that problem [Asian stereotyping] and that has been something on our long list of things we’re going to improve.”
“In many ways, I think the core of the issue is that there is not enough non-European representation in the other classes”, Crawford apparently added. “ And so one of the things that we’re doing is making it so that there is non-European representation in all of the classes so that when you get to the Monk, you no longer feel like ‘oh, this is the Asian class’.” “Then, we’re doing the flip with the Monk”, Crawford says in Kwan’s quotes. “We’re ensuring that there is non-Asian representation in the Monk.”
Kwan also notes ki points will see a name change, becoming ‘spirit points’ in the upcoming One D&D rulebooks. Kwan says this is “to be more inclusive of other martial arts traditions around the world”, and he is “curious” to see how the 5e revision (as after all, One DnD’s apparently not a new edition) handles and “communicates the nature of ‘spirit points’”.
While Kwan currently appears to be one of the only creators sharing direct quotes from the summit, other attendees also confirmed the intended changes to the Monk. TTRPG creator NerdImmersion similarly mentions the ki point changes and plans for more non-European representation in a tweet from April 4.
Kwan’s Substack also points out these plans aren’t set in stone. “Jeremy noted that a lot of this content is subject to change due to community feedback”, he writes. Wargamer has reached out to Wizards of the Coast for comment, but has not yet received a reply.