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EccentricCircle
2011-08-07, 11:22 AM
http://www.wizards.com/DnD/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4ll/20110726

not just that article. although thats the one where he seems to reach a conclusion as to what this hypothetical D&D game would look like.

I'm intrigued, i'm in no rush for a new edition, as I'm perfectly happy with the ones we have. but as someone who dabbles in game design its interesting to see the thought processes being worked through.
I've often speculated on what the next edition of D&D should look like and I think that the things he's sugesting fit quite nicely with some (though not all by a long shot) of my thoughts on the subject.
I like the idea of linking everything back to the core abilities (though not to the point of removing skills entirely)

so what does everyone think? how close would this be to your "perfect" version of D&D?

Drachasor
2011-08-07, 11:53 AM
Hmm, not sure.

Almagesto
2011-08-07, 12:49 PM
This is just WotC's response to the loss of players that arose with the release of the 4th Edition. Not everyone wanted to play WoW in pen-and-paper, and now the R&D team at WotC must really work hard to regain what was lost with this hack 'n slash approach to gaming.

Drachasor
2011-08-07, 12:58 PM
This is just WotC's response to the loss of players that arose with the release of the 4th Edition. Not everyone wanted to play WoW in pen-and-paper, and now the R&D team at WotC must really work hard to regain what was lost with this hack 'n slash approach to gaming.

To be fair, it is a lot closer to Guild Wars 1 on pen and paper if one was going to go that route. (Though I think the whole bit of comparing to an MMO is a bit misplaced).

I guess what bothers me most about that is that they act like there is just one axis of Power to a good extent. That's not really true, as even their talk about a rogue picking locks shows. There are various ways of having an impact in a game. To me an important part of designing that game is making sure classes are fairly flexible. Nothing sucks more than having to stay behind because you suck at sneaking, though having to use OP spells so the stealth of a rogue doesn't matter isn't great either.

3rd Edition is not very good at this, especially Core. 4th Edition is arguably worse.

So while the modularity is a bit interesting, I have to say it doesn't really seem to have much to do with what has bugged me most with D&D. It certainly doesn't do anything to address what has bugged me about 4th either (lack of organic growth for characters, straight-jacket approach to what players are told they can do, etc).

elpollo
2011-08-07, 01:21 PM
So what does everyone think? How close would this be to your "perfect" version of D&D?

Eh, there's not actually much information given. Modularity is a plus for me, and having access to all of these options sounds great. I'd certainly look at changing from 3.5 to this edition.



This is just WotC's response to the loss of players that arose with the release of the 4th Edition.

I've been interested in sales figures between 4th and 3rd edition for a while now. I'd appreciate it if you link your source for the statement.



Not everyone wanted to play WoW in pen-and-paper, and now the R&D team at WotC must really work hard to regain what was lost with this hack 'n slash approach to gaming.

Tell me about it. I stopped feeling comfortable with 4th edition after I had to shell out 9.99 per month to get access to the character sheet stored in my cupboard, and don't even get me started on the character limit (how did they even get all of my pencils to stop working so long as I had six character sheets written out?).

rayne_dragon
2011-08-07, 01:23 PM
It's funny, but when I was younger I went through a "D&D sucks" phase and went about trying to find the perfect game system. After all my searching, I came to the conclusion that the perfect version of D&D is AD&D, the very system whose flaws sent me looking for a better system. I don't really look at any system past 2nd edition as D&D. 3.x is the "D20" system to me and 4th edition is just "4e" - completely different games which draw on certain common inspirations just like how Final Fantasy VII is not the same game as Final Fantasy VI and both are quite drastically different from Final Fantasy I.

Every game has it's strengths and weaknesses and I think the thing that makes it perfect is enjoying it for what it is.

stainboy
2011-08-07, 03:04 PM
The Continuation of the D&D Brand thread came to pretty much this conclusion about optional rules modules. Also, the talk about fighters getting castles is encouraging. Call me cautiously optimistic, but I'm reserving judgment until we see something about what players should be able to do mechanically outside of combat.

The implied vision of the cleric is interesting. Mearls seems to think of wizards getting all their effectiveness from spells and clerics caring as much about domain powers.

The most surprising thing though is the willingness to tell 4e management decisions to go screw:


Modular vs Exception-Based Design
Optional Rulesets vs "Everything is Core"
Home Game Focus vs Sanctioned Play
Customization vs Character-Builder-friendly system

Frozen_Feet
2011-08-07, 03:21 PM
The article only seemed like an analysis of how D&D has worked for quite a while. It didn't feel like the writer was really talking about a new edition, but about old editions, with maybe a hint of pondering how to "do it right".

Yora
2011-08-07, 03:44 PM
But he's writing articles like that for months now, and there seems to have been some restructuring at the D&D depertment and some time ago they canceled most of the planned publications for the comming months without any explaination.
The subject of this thread (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=207470).

Anderlith
2011-08-07, 05:17 PM
I don't know if I like the way he words some things. Modular games are great & I support that, but he talk about it like it's an arms race. I'd prefer something more along the lines of Rolemaster's modulations.

flumphy
2011-08-07, 05:37 PM
Sounds like a nightmare, to be honest. Even assuming that there wouldn't be huge fights over what rules to use (I can say with 100% certainty that in my group, there would be.) Then there's the issue of balance...either purposefully, say, nerfing the barbarian to piss off the barbarian's player, or accidentally doing so because of lack of system mastery. Sure, you could do that in previous additions, but at least it wasn't heavily supported by the system. And then there's the what options are used in organized play.

Now, if I ever actually found a real-life group where everyone was cooperative and shared the same playstyle, I might feel differently. As it stands, I'm am never unleashing the drama that a modular game would be at a table, ever, no matter what the brand name on the box is.

Don't get me wrong. If it pans out that way and a lot of people enjoy it, then I don't begrudge them that enjoyment. I just wouldn't be purchasing 5th edition.

stainboy
2011-08-07, 05:52 PM
I don't know if I like the way he words some things. Modular games are great & I support that, but he talk about it like it's an arms race. I'd prefer something more along the lines of Rolemaster's modulations.

I'm not sure what he meant by Balance Through Superior Firepower. I read that and thought "oh, he's going to talk about how games gravitate toward rocket tag because it's really easy to balance." Instead it was just about giving everyone a roughly equal amount of stuff.

Drachasor
2011-08-07, 08:52 PM
Sounds like a nightmare, to be honest. Even assuming that there wouldn't be huge fights over what rules to use (I can say with 100% certainty that in my group, there would be.) Then there's the issue of balance...either purposefully, say, nerfing the barbarian to piss off the barbarian's player, or accidentally doing so because of lack of system mastery. Sure, you could do that in previous additions, but at least it wasn't heavily supported by the system. And then there's the what options are used in organized play.

I think part of the idea might be the GM could say, "ok, this is a Power Level 5 campaign" and people can grab whatever they want as long as it adds up to 5 altogether.

That said, I'm a bit skeptical they can really make a variety of discrete things like this which have either zero synergy or the same synergy with each other -- without being really artificial.

Tech Boy
2011-08-07, 09:08 PM
I don't know, I haven't even looked at 4.0 yet... Haha.

I'm still a pathfinder junkie, for what ever reason.

Gamer Girl
2011-08-07, 09:27 PM
The idea of a modular D&D game sounds like a good idea. If they do it right, I might even buy another D&D book.

But I know that hope is too high. Even if they did come out with a 'hardcore unfair unbalanced' module that I would like, I doubt it would get much support bookwise. And if they did something lame like 'make every book' to support each module, I know it would not work out(The WoW 4E stuff would get 100 pages, the just like 4E but different stuff would get 70 pages and the hardcore stuff would get like 10 pages).


It sure is odd trough to read a blog from a designer where he keeps talking about and bringing up 3E. I wonder why? 3E is dead to Wizards. They were sure everyone would love and go WoW over 4E and they could make tons of money and rule the world. It's almost like they are hinting at the whole 4E crap is not working out....

Drachasor
2011-08-07, 09:48 PM
The most surprising thing though is the willingness to tell 4e management decisions to go screw:


Modular vs Exception-Based Design
Optional Rulesets vs "Everything is Core"
Home Game Focus vs Sanctioned Play
Customization vs Character-Builder-friendly system


I don't think this is right. They are clearly looking at the best way to keep selling tons of book.

Why didn't they just describe how to make a balanced power at any level in the 4.0 PHB? Certainly they must have had some internal system for that. Eh, can't reveal it because then it makes it harder to make and sell additional books.

Seems like they aren't doing as well as they'd like. So they have to change things up. Maybe if they just make modular systems then that'll be a better sell. Each new book is like an entirely new game!

That said, I again am skeptical they can really make a modular system that feels organic. If you have synergy between two different Modules for a class, then the power level of combining them WILL go up. If you avoid synergies, then you'll end up with an oddly disjointed character and I don't think that will feel natural. It is nearly impossible that they could manage all modules having the exact same level of synergy with each other as well. I am having trouble seeing how they can pull this new scheme off and do it well.

Lastly, a modular system is fully compatible with exception-based design.

Anderlith
2011-08-08, 01:17 AM
I'd like to see a modular design such as.

-Gamemaster Book
-Monster Book
-Player Book (Only the bare minimum class info, but tons of character options)
-Magic Book (Caster Classes & Magic options)
-Holy Book (Divine Classes & Divine options)
-Martial Book (Martial Classes & Martial options)

I'd like for them to get rid of Martial "powers" it's stupid. I'd like them to make maneuvers to actually effect the game instead of just doing more damage. Stances that can be used (& perhaps one stance can defeat certain other stances. "my Iron Horse counters your Graceful Dove" type thing) & I'd like more focus on moving the enemy & disarms & stuns & knockdowns & feints & such

Drachasor
2011-08-08, 01:42 AM
I'd like to see a modular design such as.

-Gamemaster Book
-Monster Book
-Player Book (Only the bare minimum class info, but tons of character options)
-Magic Book (Caster Classes & Magic options)
-Holy Book (Divine Classes & Divine options)
-Martial Book (Martial Classes & Martial options)

I'd like for them to get rid of Martial "powers" it's stupid. I'd like them to make maneuvers to actually effect the game instead of just doing more damage. Stances that can be used (& perhaps one stance can defeat certain other stances. "my Iron Horse counters your Graceful Dove" type thing) & I'd like more focus on moving the enemy & disarms & stuns & knockdowns & feints & such

Well, in actual combat in real life, such things in physical combat ARE "powers" (though maneuvers/strikes/etc is a better term). They can't always be implemented and depend on subtle factors of openings/position/etc that are too small for the game to detail. So I think something like the ToB does this fairly well, though 4E has a much worse implementation, imho, with encounter powers and such.

Let us agree the names aren't for everyone, and in some respects the details of the mechanics don't always match up to what might be ideal. However, stuns, disarms, knockdowns, and the like could easily be incorporated into strikes, with various defensive measures as immediate actions, stances to enhance some aspects, etc.

Frozen_Feet
2011-08-08, 08:53 AM
Sounds like a nightmare, to be honest.

... sounds like 3.5. Or AD&D.

erikun
2011-08-08, 12:41 PM
Variable modularity? As in, you could play the specific Fighter class, with abilities pre-selected and the optionally feats every few levels - you could play the general Full BAB class, choosing what abilities from the fighter or barbarian lists along with your feats - or you could play a completely Generic class, choosing what BAB and what abilities you want at each level? So that the optimize-minded characters can fully pick and choose what options they want, and still play right next to the new gamer or person who doesn't want to make a lot of choices?

That sounds like an excellent idea! Unfortunately, despite the impression I got from the introduction, the article isn't about that at all.


My first concern is that the designers would not notice the relative power levels of the various options. The castle example they provide is a good display of this - owning a castle would not improve a character's ability to fight enemies? Really? There is absolutely nothing that an entire fiefdom and loyal retainers can provide that might make the character stronger? I suppose if we were going with the "The Castle provides +5 to your Castling skill, and all people involved specificially will not help on adventures" definition it would work, but then we start running into the most restrictive and disliked portions of 4e.

And then they turn around and state that bringing along retainers to make the adventure easier isn't a problem, and the risk of someone dying is worth the tradeoff for greater power. This feels like the "Wizards are balanced because they can lose their spellbook" approach.

Quietus
2011-08-08, 01:12 PM
I kind of like what they're presenting. To put this in a 3e view, they talk about having the "on the seas" add-on, they could have sold that in Stormwrack. ToB could have presented add-ons for the Fighter, Paladin, and Monk classes instead of presenting different ones, which would probably solve a lot of issues with people shouting about how Warblade shouldn't replace Fighter. If they give a "basic" set like our core books, and an "advanced" set like ToB and.. wait...

Regardless, I think that the idea, as presented, is interesting. Being able to say "This is a campaign that uses the Core, Pirate, and Horror modules" would be a very accurate way of saying what books are allowed, and would help to bring players into the right mindset for the game. Also, I now want to run a Pirate-Horror game, and I don't even know how that works.

Sorcerer Blob
2011-08-08, 01:32 PM
The articles themselves are very interesting. I like the exploration/thought-exercise of asking what D&D is about at its core. I think the new 4E mechanics go a long way to strive towards this core ideal, for good and for worse. I know a lot of people are treating it as "the sky is falling here comes 5E" and prophesying the beginning of the end of 4E, but I find this interpretation to be, quite frankly, wrong. The new Essentials-era math and class construction seem to be echoing what Mearls is talking about and I think that's great. Essentials-era seems to be the path to what Mearls and others believe is the core philosophy of what D&D should be. Whether you agree with that or not, I realize we all have different ideas of what type of D&D system we like, it seems to be the case backed up by the current releases.

erikun
2011-08-08, 01:32 PM
Also, I now want to run a Pirate-Horror game, and I don't even know how that works.
Pirates of the Caribbean played straight, most likely.

Drachasor
2011-08-08, 01:37 PM
Regardless, I think that the idea, as presented, is interesting. Being able to say "This is a campaign that uses the Core, Pirate, and Horror modules" would be a very accurate way of saying what books are allowed, and would help to bring players into the right mindset for the game. Also, I now want to run a Pirate-Horror game, and I don't even know how that works.

You can do the exact sort of thing now in 3.X really. Just a lot of people want to grab stuff from other books. The same will be true in a modular system.

The big thing they really seem to be advocating is how the system is balanced, but that doesn't seem realistic to me.


Pirates of the Caribbean played straight, most likely.

Eh, given that it is a gaming group, I'd remove the "played straight" part.

Almagesto
2011-08-08, 04:55 PM
To be fair, it is a lot closer to Guild Wars 1 on pen and paper if one was going to go that route. (Though I think the whole bit of comparing to an MMO is a bit misplaced).

Either way, you DO agree it is an MMO, right?



[...]There are various ways of having an impact in a game. To me an important part of designing that game is making sure classes are fairly flexible.[...]

3rd Edition is not very good at this, especially Core. 4th Edition is arguably worse.


Exactly my point. I hate the "paths". I'm sticking with 3.x Edition.

Almagesto
2011-08-08, 05:02 PM
[....]I've been interested in sales figures between 4th and 3rd edition for a while now. I'd appreciate it if you link your source for the statement.

I cannot reveal sources, but I will tell you WotC seems to have a lot of problems with the 4th Edition; even restructuring the whole DnD Department.


Tell me about it. I stopped feeling comfortable with 4th edition after I had to shell out 9.99 per month to get access to the character sheet stored in my cupboard, and don't even get me started on the character limit (how did they even get all of my pencils to stop working so long as I had six character sheets written out?).

That's the whole thing: They overflowed the marked with the same amount of books they released for the whole 3.X Edition in mere 2 years.

And do you know who's the winner in all this? PAIZO. They are going to be making the big bucks from now on. DnD will get a hook on the new roleplayers (hack 'n slashers with no sense of roleplaying besides what they muster up in WoW) and Paizo will retain the older roleplayers (who, btw, have the money to buy as many supplements as Paizo can come up with) and will slowly gain the favor of the younger crowd once they're tired of hack 'n slashing.

EccentricCircle
2011-08-08, 05:22 PM
its all very interesting.
I hope that this isn't presaging a new edition any time soon, partly because i'm happy playing the games we already have and partly as they should be talking about this sort of thing before a new version is designed rather than before it is released.

I agree with the comments that the suplimentary books for 3.5 already did this to an extent. I think thats one of the things I like best about 3.x, you have a very clear sense of there being different subsystems. I'm actually running a Stormwrack/ tome of battle game at the moment. I generally treat complete x/ compendiums/ core as the basic set that people are allowed to pick stuff from and then throw in a couple of thematically apropriate sourcebooks, usually at least one environment book.

NNescio
2011-08-08, 06:44 PM
I think part of the idea might be the GM could say, "ok, this is a Power Level 5 campaign" and people can grab whatever they want as long as it adds up to 5 altogether.

That said, I'm a bit skeptical they can really make a variety of discrete things like this which have either zero synergy or the same synergy with each other -- without being really artificial.

Cue the Dragonball jokes.

Drachasor
2011-08-08, 07:51 PM
Either way, you DO agree it is an MMO, right?

Well, technically Guild Wars isn't an MMO.

Anyhow, I concede that 4th seems to have been made to easily translate into a computer game, but I don't think it was modeled AFTER computer games. It isn't really like any sort of MMO except on the most superficial of levels -- MMOs are a lot worse.


Cue the Dragonball jokes.

I will view it as a design failure if you can't make such a joke as an official part of the game setup.

Almagesto
2011-08-08, 11:42 PM
[...]I hope that this isn't presaging a new edition any time soon[...]

Be wary, my friend...

stainboy
2011-08-09, 12:16 AM
Lastly, a modular system is fully compatible with exception-based design.

I know that, but three years ago Rob Heinsoo and Chris Perkins didn't. I'm just using WotC's buzzword as they use it. Early 4e design thought modularity was bad; now Mearls thinks modularity is good.

Fun fact: "Exception Based Design" is a term WotC misappropriated from software development. EBD is (in very general terms) using failsafes so your software won't crash if something doesn't work. It has nothing to do with consistency or self-contained rules or any of the things it means in WotC marketing-speak.

Drachasor
2011-08-09, 12:25 AM
I know that, but three years ago Rob Heinsoo and Chris Perkins didn't. I'm just using WotC's buzzword as they use it. Early 4e design thought modularity was bad; now Mearls thinks modularity is good.

Odd. I just think they are being overconfident about balancing power levels (since that seems to be what things are about).


Fun fact: "Exception Based Design" is a term WotC misappropriated from software development. EBD is (in very general terms) using failsafes so your software won't crash if something doesn't work. It has nothing to do with consistency or self-contained rules or any of the things it means in WotC marketing-speak.

Granted it appears in software, and perhaps they first heard the term there. That said, the term as used in D&D does make sense given its own definition.

The big problem with that design for an RPG is something my players encountered. If the base rules don't cover it, and you aren't given a special exemption, then people tend to think they can't do it. Sure page 42 in the DMG goes over how to handle player creativity in combat, but the PHB doesn't discuss it at all in the combat section. I found this effect really stifled my players. Hell, even when I gave everyone a free once per encounter power that they could make up on the spot (so long as it was thematically appropriate for their character), they still tended not to use it -- even when I made them nearly as good as some dailies.

stainboy
2011-08-09, 01:02 AM
Odd. I just think they are being overconfident about balancing power levels (since that seems to be what things are about).


Yeah, I'd like to hear more about that too. I'd be a lot more confident if he hadn't made a big deal of all these modules being equal in value, because they won't be. If that's a deal-breaker all this stuff about optional modules will eventually go in the garbage. (Or worse, they become unnecessary complexity that just lets you do the same things with different sets of numbers.)

elpollo
2011-08-09, 09:58 AM
That's the whole thing: They overflowed the marked with the same amount of books they released for the whole 3.X Edition in mere 2 years.

I don't really see how that makes it like an MMO, although there certainly were quite a lot of books. Didn't Insiders have access to most of that stuff without having to buy them, though?

It's not a huge surprise to me, though, considering that a lot of gamers already had a system they liked. I'd also expect fewer people to be transitioning into roleplaying games these days. Damnit, I really want to see some figures for this.



And do you know who's the winner in all this? PAIZO. They are going to be making the big bucks from now on.
*snip*
and Paizo will retain the older roleplayers (who, btw, have the money to buy as many supplements as Paizo can come up with) and will slowly gain the favor of the younger crowd once they're tired of hack 'n slashing.

Whilst anecdotal evidence, out of the thirty-ish roleplayers I know, I only know one who owns a pathfinder book. Probably about half own 3.5 material and plan to stick with it. Quite a few (I'm not sure exactly how many, as I'm not interested in it any more) also play 4th. A couple still like AD&D 2e and the much older stuff.

Furthermore, Pathfinder is still D&D. When/if people get tired of the "hack'n slash", which is definitely all this new edition will have, why would they move to anther system also built around fighting monsters in dungeons over, say, any of the many other widely played systems which don't put an emphasis on combat?



DnD will get a hook on the new roleplayers (hack 'n slashers with no sense of roleplaying besides what they muster up in WoW)

I... just... I know this is dangerous territory, but really? Clearly defined class roles did not make D&D into World of Warcraft any more than having wizards in both games did. I have no idea what 4th ed. did to your family to make you quite so against it (nor World of Warcraft, actually - I've seen a roleplaying server on World of Warcraft and they actually do roleplay, and I've heard tale of some pretty damn good stuff that actually makes me consider paying for an MMORPG), but frequent comparisons between the two is as productive and accurate as me comparing it to filo pastry. Yes, I can technically eat a 4th edition book, and yes, the pages are much like the sheets of pastry, but I can't use 4th edition to make baklava.

Or something.

stainboy
2011-08-09, 04:31 PM
Whilst anecdotal evidence, out of the thirty-ish roleplayers I know, I only know one who owns a pathfinder book. Probably about half own 3.5 material and plan to stick with it. Quite a few (I'm not sure exactly how many, as I'm not interested in it any more) also play 4th. A couple still like AD&D 2e and the much older stuff.

Paizo claims that they currently outsell 4e. It's possible that that's not true, but that they're willing to say it at all shows that they have a big share of the market. If I worked at WotC that would be a gigantic red flag. Can you imagine 3e having serious competition from a 2e retro-clone?



I have no idea what 4th ed. did to your family to make you quite so against it (nor World of Warcraft, actually - I've seen a roleplaying server on World of Warcraft and they actually do roleplay, and I've heard tale of some pretty damn good stuff that actually makes me consider paying for an MMORPG), but frequent comparisons between the two is as productive and accurate as me comparing it to filo pastry.

Except that you just admitted that you haven't played World of Warcraft, so you wouldn't know if it's a fair comparison or not.

Almagesto
2011-08-09, 04:47 PM
Originally Posted by Almagesto
That's the whole thing: They overflowed the marked with the same amount of books they released for the whole 3.X Edition in mere 2 years.

I don't really see how that makes it like an MMO, although there certainly were quite a lot of books. Didn't Insiders have access to most of that stuff without having to buy them, though?

The amount of books that WotC has released doesn't make 4th a MMO, just clearing that up. My intention with that remark was to express concern for the marketing approach WotC took with 4th Edition. Now that all those books are out, there is little hope for something new and exciting to come during the next years. I mean; What else can they come up with now? They already "translated" all the 3.5 books into 4th and even created new "source" books and "race" books for the new developments of 4th.


Whilst anecdotal evidence[...]

Damnit, I really want to see some figures for this.

That's that. I mean, it is not hard numbers - just your perception of the whole situation based on the players you know. And the figures - BELIEVE ME - will not be available at all, no matter how hard you try to get hold of them.



Furthermore, Pathfinder is still D&D. When/if people get tired of the "hack'n slash", which is definitely all this new edition will have, why would they move to anther system also built around fighting monsters in dungeons over, say, any of the many other widely played systems which don't put an emphasis on combat?

You are right about one thing: Pathfinder is still D&D. Unlike the 4th Edition - which pretty much streamlined the gameplay and concentrated on the combat aspects of the game (don't believe me?, just compare the number of spells that deal damage vs flavor spells, e.g. illusions and enchantments, from both editions) - Pathfinder still has the role in roleplaying.



I... just... I know this is dangerous territory, but really? Clearly defined class roles did not make D&D into World of Warcraft any more than having wizards in both games did.

I believe that's where we differ, my friend. {And I earnestly say this, no sarcasm intended whatsoever.}

I personally don't think the clearly defined class roles are naught more than the "translation" of WoW into pen and paper. WotC just wanted to use the recent upheaval in MMORPGs brought by WoW to profit from selling all their books; so they changed their target market accordingly. Don't believe me? Talk to a marketing friend and he will tell you 4th seems to be aimed at a younger crowd than 3.x.

Having wizards in both games doesn't make them equal. Rather it is the roles said wizards take on both games that used to differentiate them. Wizards on the 3.X edition had many roles they could take - from glass cannons to boosters - and now they're reduced to being "leaders". The wizards in this new edition somehow seem more angled towards inflicting damage when compared to their 3.X edition homologues.



I have no idea what 4th ed. did to your family to make you quite so against it [...]

:smallbiggrin: Just for the sake of continuing your joke, I'll tell you that it did several things to my "family" of roleplayers.


Some of us, for example, actually prefer roleplaying over just killing a bunch of creatures - we can go weeks without rolling a single die on the table.
Also, I like my elves a little less fairy.
Many of us feel that if a fighter is diplomatic enough to be the leader and a wizard is crazy enough to be the meatshield, they should do it; I mean, it's all about taking the roles you want.
The abilities for each class seem sort of stiff as well; they practically tell you where to assign each of your ability rolls.
If characters want to go to another plane of existance at 3rd level, they should do it, and a clever DM should find a way to give them that opportunity.
In 4th, Magic Items are listed in the Players' Handbook just for one reason: it's a pen-and-paper MMO ! The characters get what they want, when they want, as long as they have the money to buy it. That's it. Nothing can be more streamlined than that.




(nor World of Warcraft, actually - I've seen a roleplaying server on World of Warcraft and they actually do roleplay, and I've heard tale of some pretty damn good stuff that actually makes me consider paying for an MMORPG),
[...]

Exactly, you seen a roleplaying server on Wow; out of... how many? See? WoW is designed for people who just want to take a bite out of monsters (see Leeroy Jenkins); and that is fine, just don't go around saying it's all about roleplaying in WoW.



[...]but frequent comparisons between the two is as productive and accurate as me comparing it to filo pastry. Yes, I can technically eat a 4th edition book, and yes, the pages are much like the sheets of pastry, but I can't use 4th edition to make baklava.

Or something.

:smallbiggrin: This last part was just hilarious. Obviating the syntactic mistake of the first sentence, it's overall a great piece of creativity. Loved the gourmet allusion.

PS
Here's Kurt Wiegel, who can say things in a more savvy manner than I possibly can. An experienced DM and candidate for a judging position on an important price for RPGs.
4th Edition Review - Part 1 (http://www.youtube.com/user/pugknowspro#p/search/0/Qp6EbvJ0ssM)
4th Edition Review - Part 2 (http://www.youtube.com/user/pugknowspro#p/search/1/DuAaL7W6SSw)

Almagesto
2011-08-09, 04:49 PM
Paizo claims that they currently outsell 4e. It's possible that that's not true, but that they're willing to say it at all shows that they have a big share of the market. If I worked at WotC that would be a gigantic red flag. Can you imagine 3e having serious competition from a 2e retro-clone?

MY THOUGHTS, EXATLY


Except that you just admitted that you haven't played World of Warcraft, so you wouldn't know if it's a fair comparison or not.

I didn't want to say it, but...

Drachasor
2011-08-09, 05:53 PM
Some of us, for example, actually prefer roleplaying over just killing a bunch of creatures - we can go weeks without rolling a single die on the table.

Hey, you can roleplay AND kill things at the same time.


And for what it is worth, I've played WoW and 4th. They are not much alike. At best there are vague similarities with roles, but even that has massive differences (3 vs. 4, aggro only momentary in 4th, etc, etc). I do think it is reasonable to think 4th was made to be easily ported to computer games, but it isn't much like an MMO.


Yeah, I'd like to hear more about that too. I'd be a lot more confident if he hadn't made a big deal of all these modules being equal in value, because they won't be. If that's a deal-breaker all this stuff about optional modules will eventually go in the garbage. (Or worse, they become unnecessary complexity that just lets you do the same things with different sets of numbers.)

Here's the thing to me.

Modules A, B, C, and D might all be balanced with each other. However, they are going to be using different mechanics it seems, so that means they work vastly differently. Given that, it seems like a monumental task to make sure A+B, A+C, and A+D are all balanced with each other, to say nothing of the all the other possible combinations.

Sorcerer Blob
2011-08-09, 06:46 PM
PS
Here's Kurt Wiegel, who can say things in a more savvy manner than I possibly can. An experienced DM and candidate for a judging position on an important price for RPGs.
4th Edition Review - Part 1 (http://www.youtube.com/user/pugknowspro#p/search/0/Qp6EbvJ0ssM)
4th Edition Review - Part 2 (http://www.youtube.com/user/pugknowspro#p/search/1/DuAaL7W6SSw)

Regardless on your feelings on the "edition wars" let us unite in agreement that this man is the opposite of saavy. (At least in the videos posted as that is all I've watched.)

Also, when did this turn into an edition wars? Let's get back on topic because I'm pretty sure I've read these exact same arguments in 2008 and countless times since then.

stainboy
2011-08-09, 07:10 PM
Modules A, B, C, and D might all be balanced with each other. However, they are going to be using different mechanics it seems, so that means they work vastly differently. Given that, it seems like a monumental task to make sure A+B, A+C, and A+D are all balanced with each other, to say nothing of the all the other possible combinations.

Well, yeah.

I think we're past discussing whether all these modules will be balanced. They won't be, I agree, there's no way. The question is whether Mearls is OK with that, or whether the designers and developers will be OK with that.

Lord.Sorasen
2011-08-09, 11:21 PM
I really am against this "power level" idea, if only because, as so many people have stated, there's no way it can end up balanced. As long as there are options there will be system mastery. This will mean imbalance. Some options will always be better than others.

I feel like the problem is that D&D thinks it can explain everything in terms of absolutes and sciences. They can't. D&D is a system based on situations. For that reason, the value of any given module is going to be situational. Entangle is a very powerful spell in forest campaigns, but will see very little use in an industrial campaign. Support characters are very powerful, but without people to support, encounters for them become far more difficult. They need to stop trying to fix this problem because it's not a problem. It's just how the game works and always will work.

Personally, I support a simplistic "word from the creators" on new features, where the module's designers tell of problems they expect to find in balance, including where ideas might work and where it might not. Encourage people to try it out and see what happens. Most importantly, throw out the idea of balance in the big scheme of things. The mentality of "a good module is fun but balanced" should be replaced with "a good module is fun". There should be no standard "D&D game balance" but rather DMs should figure it out themselves. Which this article actually states pretty much. I just think they should get rid of the idea of a numeric power level and replace it with "here are some pointers, now learn by doing".

stainboy
2011-08-19, 08:04 AM
More Mearls articles (http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4ll/20110816)

I really like the central idea of the last one. We don't know how it handles opposed checks yet and they need to drop the thing where the DM chooses what attribute to roll, but other than that, really good.