View Full Version : Editions

2007-05-04, 07:26 PM
Perhaps it's just because I'm in IT and have a seething hatred (exageration) for Microsoft, but:

What is your opinions of editions? It's apparent that since most of you are still D&Ding that they don't both you too much, but what's your overall point of view to them?

Essentially you have an open ended system that theoretically, could be perfected and never need to be revamped. Or, if not perfected, streamlined enough to be left in the hands of very capable GMs.

Even so, you have at least 5 (that I'm aware of) editions of D&D, all with a rather large collection of rule books. 3.0 to 3.5 seems most "gimmicky" to me due to being only half a revision, but still a different enough system to require new books.

Do most of you find this fine? Preferable? Do you get excited when you hear about new editions? Do you dread having to buy even MORE books?

I'm taking an interest because some friends of mine are (or would be if not for scheduling conflicts) avid players, and the times I've sat in on sessions it's been pretty cool. However, I've already got horrible money sinks in computer hardware and software. I can quite easily use their books, but it's still a point of curiosity for me.

2007-05-04, 07:54 PM
Yes, the switch from 3.0 to 3.5 was poor. Yes it fixed some errors. Yes, it was a play for our wallets.

That being said, I think 3.5 is the best heroic fantasy system out there. Simple to learn, but can grow in complexity for the more advance users. Most system I have found, as they age, get "creeping mondoism". Each splat book would add another class, spell, or ability that was just a bit better than the last. After a few years a low level character would take out a minor god from the orgional book. With a few execptions - like Pun Pun, 3.5 has avoided this.

As for the money sink - there are strong and good rumors about 4th edition just around the bend. I dread this abit. Personaly, I think that TOB was a test ballon. I have nothing to back this up execpt my gut feeling.

That being siad, as a player, the free SRD is all you need. A PH and a choice splat book or two will get you far.

2007-05-04, 08:03 PM
Honestly? I'm a cheapskate. I generally distain buying books for minor upgrades. If a friend buys the book, more power to him, I might use it, but at 30 bucks a pop new (roughly) I better get a _whole_ book's worth if I'm going to actually buy it.

2007-05-04, 10:14 PM
Well, I really like Windows Vista and Microsoft Office 2007, but I imagine I would have been annoyed if I had bought the old versions just prior to this release... but on to the real question:

Editions of D&D
The good thing about the end of an edition is that you can finally complete your collection, the bad thing is it is no longer officially supported.

Here's the thing, players like to buy books, but they like them to be backwards compatable. However, there are only so many expansion books you can publish before you have to produce a new edition. Many (A)D&D 2.x 'Sourcebooks' contained reprinted (A)D&D 1.x material, watered down and spread out. However, other 2.x Books, like the Player's Option Series were entirely new.

In general, I don't worry about changing editions. Most material is *very* similar to what has gone before and I am unlikely to be satisfied by any one edition on all counts. I certainly don't rush out to buy the newest D&D Splat Book every week and have never bothered to upgrade my 3.0 Books to 3.5. I look forward to fourth edition with curiosity, but I won't be rushing out to buy it either. At the minute I am looking towards completing my (A)D&D collections of Core Books... but just for fun.

2007-05-04, 10:31 PM
Perhaps it's just because I'm in IT and have a seething hatred (exageration) for Microsoft, but:
Your sentence contains redundant terms. Whenever you use the word "Microsoft," the phrase "seething hatred" is taken for granted.


I understand the need to fix stuff, but I'm pretty unhappy with 3.5 being just like 3.0 but not really.

But the thing I don't like are the additional books. I don't want new classes and feats and spells. I want campaign settings or expanded areas of rules (mass battles, ship battles, etc.).

The constant release of new classes makes me think they didn't get the base classes right.

2007-05-04, 11:56 PM
Your sentence contains redundant terms. Whenever you use the word "Microsoft," the phrase "seething hatred" is taken for granted.

BLASPHEMY! I decry Blasphemy!

As to the topic at hand, I don't really buy all that many splat books, so a new edition isn't going to kill me. On the other hand, though, I don't really have any trouble with the current system. The classes are occasionally unbalanced, yes, and some other things are off, but it's nothing that a few minor changes won't fix.

2007-05-05, 09:24 AM
No, no. You have to read the whole thing:

I'm in IT and have a seething hatred (exageration) for Microsoft

It's the combination of the two. If you're in IT, you hate Microsoft.

More on topic, I'm fine with new editions. I understand perfectly why it's done, Wizards is only a business after all, they want maximum profit. At the same time, I probably wouldn't switch over from 3.5 if Fourth Edition came out tomorrow.

2007-05-05, 09:55 AM
Personally, the switch from 3.0 to 3.5 bugged me a little, but I mostly see it as old news now. Out of the three re-released core books, the only one that I didn't think underwent a very significant change was the DMG, which mainly just altered a few magic items and incorporated a bit of the planar information from Manual of the Planes. The changes to the core classes, feat, spells, etc. in the Player's Handbook justified the need for a new printing to me, the same for the Monster Manual. I actually wish Wizards would release a re-print of the the Monster Manual II including all the changes... But I like buying new books from time to time and I like when new material is released; be it "crunch" or "fluff." I'd see a failure to expand the options for characters within a system as a sign of stagnation - a sign that the system is dying and will soon be replaced.

I don't think 4th Edition will be coming out for a while, yet. Probably a few years at the earliest. D&D 3.5 is still going strong and Wizards apparently continues to make some good money off of the system. If you remember correctly, 3.0 came out shortly after Wizards bought out the near-bankrupt TSR. It makes complete sense for the company to release their own edition of the rules to coincide with their purchase of the old ruleset.

As for whether or not I'd purchase a hypothetical 4th edition, I guess it would depend on exactly how it played out. I'm open to the idea, but I think that 3.5 really serves pretty much all of my fantasty-gaming needs and has greatly improved, mechanically, upon the game I used to play in high school. Many of the issues I used to have with the 2nd edition ruleset have been solved in the 3.5 edition and I think I'd actually be hard-pressed to find something that I think really needs to be changed. Many people on the boards seem to have isseus with game balance, especially as related to specific spells, but these really haven't been a problem in my games so they don't worry me.

Really, about the only update that I think I'd really like to see would be a set of somewhat generic classes with a breakdown of different abilities and such like TSR produced with the Player's Option set for 2nd edition. The problem I see with this is that players would actually have more options for character creation in 3.5 than they would in a new system because I doubt the sheer volume of 3.5 abilities would be compiled initially in the 4th edition. Besides, we already have rules in Unearthed Arcana for generic classes along with a set of class abilities-turned-feats. Making D&D character creation point-based would, I think, make it too much like GURPS for my tastes.

2007-05-05, 10:14 AM
Making D&D character creation point-based would, I think, make it too much like GURPS for my tastes.

You should try playing a fantasy game using Mutants and Masterminds (which is point-based). I think many would be surprised at its effectiveness.

With that said, I wouldn't really care if a new edition came out. I only use D&D for nostalgic reasons and because I find the number-crunching entertaining, but that's just me.
Many things could be improved, but I think it'll take at least a couple of years before Wizards are done milking 3.5 of all it's worth. Until then, there won't be a new edition.