Legends and Lore - Charting the Course for D&D: Your Voice, Your Game

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Trevor, can you confirm if the 4e digital tools will still work/exist after 5e is released? I understand that 5e tools will be developed, but I'm wondering if subscribers would still be able to play 4e as a standalone version should they choose.



they are claiming they are, we will see how it goes



If we can somehow get more house rule implementation (at least new powers and items), we'll be golden.
The discussion thus far has been interesting and entertaining.  Personally, I am excited about anything that will promote "the game".  I have watched this forum for awhile with very few posts. I have done the same over at Paizo. Can WOTC truly unify the gaming community?

I have played since B/X, then to 1e, briefly in 2e, skipped 3e, and played 4e.  There was something about 4e's tone and asethetics that gnawed at me over time.  It was too much change too quick even with superior mechanics.  2e had similar tone problem for me even though it had progressively better mechanics. For me, mechanics is everything that makes the game fun.

I am amazed at frothsof's ability to enjoy both 1e and 4e.  As much I loved 1e,  I could never see myself going back and playing 1e in the original sense. There were mechanics that were just bad.  For example, I can see 1e/2e only with the following: no tables, no THACO, only BAB.; also no descending AC only ascending, simple saving throw categories. I guess my 1e vision would be more like playing house-ruled Swords & Wizardry with OSRIC options.  The coming release of Myth & Magic can add some 2e to the mix. Perhaps this is what WOTC is thinking about it terms of modular and review of mechanics. 

I really hope that WOTC can do a great job on 5e.   I noticed the word "iteration" in the article, it makes me wonder if they will even label it 5e.  I hope they can create a modular game that lets the DM choose the ruleset as easily as a player can choose character options.  It will be a difficult and daunting task.  The open playtest was really the only viable option to success.

I made a diagram that shows the factions of "the game".  It gives me a pictoral feel for the game's current state.  It is an interesting snapshot that is by no means complete. I hope it is readable. I don't know since I have never uploaded a picture in a post. The mixing of magenta is influence of OGL SRD.




Here is a Dropbox link to the picture:

db.tt/A0oNiWO3
So, in other words, exactly what we didn't want.  At least, those of us here who responded to the L&L polls, which as we guessed correctly were focus-group-testing 5e design concepts.

Meaning they already had the idea, did L&L, got feedback, and haven't yet changed anything?

I'm excited about the whole player-feedback process, but it'd be nice to see some of that showing up in the design at some point.

How much of this is already set in stone, and how much do we the playtesters have an impact on?
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I will laugh if instead of uniting the D&D, this just creates another faction and everybody still hates each other. Are the Pathfinder and Old School people really going to come back. Are 4E people going to be happy with something "retro" and designed in the vein of what Monte Cook has been spouting in L&L?
...whatever
from enworld


"I did get an opportunity to playtest some of the materials… it felt, in many ways, very retro. The new edition will be designed as a basic rules set which can be expanded upon with stack on rules to suit the tastes of mechanics complexity to suite the players and DMs."


is there a smiley that vomits?




How's this? 
Come join Team Apathy! or not whatever shrug.gif
 
Yo! tm  afro.gif

 
I will laugh if instead of uniting the D&D, this just creates another faction and everybody still hates each other. Are the Pathfinder and Old School people really going to come back. Are 4E people going to be happy with something "retro" and designed in the vein of what Monte Cook has been spouting in L&L?



Honestly?  I doubt it.  You have evidence of a faction split in this very thread, with people like frothsof wanting nothing to do with the new edition from the very start.  I'm not saying he's wrong to think that, just pointing out an observation that they're already off to a poor start if they really want this edition to be the One Ed To Rule Them All.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Let the 4e grognard-ism BEGIN!!

That happened when Essentials came out.

(By the way, I'm on record as saying that Essentials has some interesting ideas that would have been worth trying by designing them into 5E from the very start, but should not have been inserted in mid-edition in 4E.)

And I think there'd be less 4E grognardism if the head designers did not look so much like 2E grognards.
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
here i was thinking the playtester bloggers were simply nerfing the hell out of zones in hotf but lo and behold they were automatically succeeding on climb checks all along
The lifespan of 4e for this customer is 2 years and counting, currently. That short life span leads to some disappointment.

At least with a TV, computer, or coffee maker I can use it until it breaks while new models come out in the meantime.

If people continue to play 4e, that won't help the edition wars problem, probably.

Now, as a D&D consumer, I'm confused: Pathfinder, 4e, or 5e?

I'll also be curious to see if my 4e characters are compatible with 5e.
I will laugh if instead of uniting the D&D, this just creates another faction and everybody still hates each other. Are the Pathfinder and Old School people really going to come back. Are 4E people going to be happy with something "retro" and designed in the vein of what Monte Cook has been spouting in L&L?



If the L&L articles are any indication, this is exactly what will happen.

But don't worry, 6th edition is coming out in time for the 45th anniversery!
Fire Blog Control, Change, and Chaos: The Elemental Power Source Elemental Heroes Example Classes Xaosmith Exulter Chaos Bringer Director Elemental Heroes: Looking Back - Class and Story Elemental Heroes: Complete Class Beta - The Xaosmith (January 16, 2012) Elemental Heroes: Complete Class Beta - The Harbinger (May 16, 2012) Check out my Elemental Heroes blog series and help me develop four unique elemental classes.
I have specific wants when it comes to a RPG. I don't see how a modular RPG can do as good a job at delivering what I want as a game specifically designed to deliver it. The modular version would be wishy-washy and half-baked compared to it. If 4E is what I want out of a game, how is a modular 5E supposed to be a better 4E? I think a lot of the 3.5E/PF crowd and the OSR crowd have similar feelings, and would be more inclined to stick with their games. A modular D&D would have to be a home run to avoid failing altogether.

As for aesthetics as I mentioned before, aesthetics go deeper than fluff. The system can affect the "feel" of the game. System matters, and a modular system is going to have a core "feel" no matter what they pile on top of it. If that "feel" doesn't deliver what someone wants, it is almost impossible to fix. If the intent of the game is to appeal to as big an audience as possible and be modularly customizable to deliver that, the core aesthetics need to be as generic(and IMO soulless and uninspiring) as possible. I'm not a 4E grognard, not quite yet. What I am is a skeptic, a BIG one.

If the end result is the GURPSification of D&D, it will be dead in my eyes.
...whatever
You do realize that what will actually happen is that support will stop. And the official line will be, we had planned to continue to support, but our data shows it's not cost effective to continue to do so. There will be no more updates to any of those tools.

That is expected and acceptable (aside from a need to change a setting and rebuild the tools,  so that they will tell the client to use Silverlight 4).

As long as the tools are still available.

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
:Sigh: And so it's official. I'm not thrilled to be going through yet another Edition change. I'm sad to see my favorite edition thus far going to the wayside, already. These four years seemed to fly by.

The effort to reunite the fractured fan base was inevitable. They have to try. I'm not sure if it's possible, but I hope it works. I'm willing to give a new edition a shot, but I'm heading into it much more guardedly than I have done with past editions. I've been unquestionably ready for a change for each of the previous relaunches. I feel like 4E has so much left to offer, but has to be prematurely shelved due to the fractured community left in the wake of its launch.

I'm not feeling particularly optimistic, at the moment; but I will admit that each edition has been better, in my opinion, that it's predecessors. Hopefully, they're able to make me feel the same way about 5E. That will largely depend on how many backward steps, toward previous editions, the design team decides to take.

I've signed up for playtesting, so we'll see...
1. The OGL was a travesty. I hope they don't bring it back, and I don't think they will.



Pretty imprecise language when you seem to be trying to level a specific charge.  What Ryan Dancey realized back then, and some people still can't grasp is that an OGL SRD will exist whether you release one or not.  It will exist in the form of pirated scanned PDFs of the print books.  You might as well have the open license and SRD out there officially.  This is especially true when you are actually releasing beta versions of the rules for play-test.  I'd say a new OGL is almost a certainty.  The way D&D is going to make money going forward is through value in a robust online digital offering.



The OGL was a travesty, at least from WotC's perspective. The legacy of the OGL was that WotC enabled the creation of its own competition by allowing another company to legally produce a a version of their old game. Without the OGL, the creation of Pathfinder would have been rockier or might not have happened at all. I don't see WotC making the same mistake twice.

On another note, I wanted to repost what I wrote on the announcement page, as it seems WotC is actually reading here:

While I do think it's not just too soon, but *far* too soon to be considering a new edition, I'm willing to give whatever WotC puts out a try, in spite of the fact that I'm not just happy with 4e but it's my favorite RPG, ever.

The one thing I ask WotC is to be careful of trying too hard to recapture those players that left for Pathfinder. You may not be getting the sales you want but there are still a lot of us buying your product and I'll wager there are more of us than are playing Pathfinder. Because the two groups seem to be looking for VASTLY different things in an RPG, the more you change the system to appeal to the disenfranchised crowd of Pathfinder players, the more of us 4e players are likely to slip through your fingers. The old adage, "the bird in hand is worth two in the bush" applies here. Be careful you don't lose more 4e players than you gain in Pathfinder players with your 5e.

While I do think it's not just too soon, but *far* too soon to be considering a new edition, I'm willing to give whatever WotC puts out a try, in spite of the fact that I'm not just happy with 4e but it's my favorite RPG, ever.



With each previous edition update, I was ready to make the change. 3E was due, and 3.5 was a cleanup of 3E, so whatever. I likewise felt ready for a change when 4E came. (I think the Star Wars Saga Edition game helped whet my appetite for something new, so that helped.)

It's only been about 3.5 years, though, that 4E's been around. (How long did 3E/3.5E last? 8 years?) I'm really not ready for a change, and would love to see years more of support for 4E. No use crying about it, though.

I hope they're able to work some magic and create my new favorite iteration of DnD.

I will laugh if instead of uniting the D&D, this just creates another faction and everybody still hates each other. Are the Pathfinder and Old School people really going to come back. Are 4E people going to be happy with something "retro" and designed in the vein of what Monte Cook has been spouting in L&L?



I personally think it is practically guaranteed that the Edition Wars are just witnessing the birth of a new faction, not a reuniting of old ones.

I have no interest in retro gaming... D&D feeling too retro is what had me playing mostly non-D&D systems up until 4th edition. 4th edition is the first edition of D&D I completely committed to since playing 1e as a kid.

Worse, I think by making the game try to be something for everyone, it's going to end up appealing to few. I really don't think there's going to be much of a way to bring back Pathfinder players without losing 4e players in droves.

Plus, I think the modular style of the game will not end up being a draw because in the end, the game will be judged upon whatever baseline organized play sets for it. This will be the style of play people see of it first and will be the style they expect in their home games - it'll be a pain to play one way at home and then have to conform to an entirely different set of rules when you go play LFR or whatever the new equivalent will be. So rather than the world of possibilities that game could be judged on, it will mostly likely be judged on the "official" iteration. There can be no "One Game to Rule Them All."
The one thing I ask WotC is to be careful of trying too hard to recapture those players that left for Pathfinder.



dude, that is the entire point of the new edition. it sure as hell isnt to do anything for current 4e players-were getting screwed

A much as I hate to say it, I do think 4e has gotten a little to bulky, and doesn't really work well at higher levels, and the math errors that were present from the beginning really complicate things, so it is probably time for a new edition. My concern is that I feel  the two people who will be in charge of it may be worst possible choices to design a new edition; the Legends and Lore articles, as well as the polls they have been pushing on us have made it very clear to me that they have an agenda already in mind, and they are not really interested in player input.  However, I will wait and see. This time I am  going to be much more cautious and not buy books until I have gotten a concesus here and at enworld on whether or not they are garbage before I decide whether or not I want to move along with them.

The current edition works fine as long as you keep it in heroic, and limit the number of source books you use, so if I continue to play DnD, that is what I am most likely to do.
You do realize that what will actually happen is that support will stop. And the official line will be, we had planned to continue to support, but our data shows it's not cost effective to continue to do so. There will be no more updates to any of those tools.

That is expected and acceptable (aside from a need to change a setting and rebuild the tools,  so that they will tell the client to use Silverlight 4).

As long as the tools are still available.




Well, I agree with you, but the reality will be like this.

WoTC will say: "At this time, we plan to continue to support 4e" knowing full well at some point they will stop.  And honestly yeah, why not stop supporting it? It's a dead product.

BUT the impression they will give, on purpose, is that 4E isn't going away (any time soon) will be so that customers don't just drop it quicker then they know will happen. Because they make a plan based on still bringing X amount of profit from X product.

They also know that People will read into any statement they make about plans. Because while at this time they plan to continue supporting 4E, they also know, at this time, they plan to eventually stop supporting 4e.

And customers will be pissed when it goes down, and WoTC will say, at the time we said that, we had planned, but plans have now changed...customers will get pissed, some will leave, some will stay, but it will just get added to the long list of "Things WoTC totally lied about", giving them more bad rep.

Which will only really matter if any company manages to come out with a game that does better then DnD.
its hilarious to read the title where it says 'your voice, your game' and there isnt going to be a damn thing i want in the whole game
My concern is that I feel  the two people who will be in charge of it may be worst possible choices to design a new edition; the Legends and Lore articles, as well as the polls they have been pushing on us have made it very clear to me that they have an agenda already in mind, and they are not really interested in player input.


This is pretty much exactly my attitude, as well. I don't know who Mearls, Cook, et al. are designing 5e for, but based on publicly available info it sure as heck isn't me.

The idea of a new edition does not, in itself, offend me. I'm open to it, and there are a few things I dislike about 4e that I simply don't see ever being fixed without an edition change. I am not confident, however, that the announced team will be able to deliver a new edition I actually want to play.
The one thing I ask WotC is to be careful of trying too hard to recapture those players that left for Pathfinder.



dude, that is the entire point of the new edition. it sure as hell isnt to do anything for current 4e players-were getting screwed




This weekend I was just thinking about what a 4.5e would look like (tweaks and clean up), and how a little cleaning could be great for the game.  That I didn't really need a new edition for several years.  Then this news landed.  I've been excited, sad, frustrated and thrilled by the announcement.

However, I do not assume that those of us who really enjoy 4e are getting screwed.  It seems clear that they are trying to avoid that.  Will they succeed, I don't know.  I found the L&L articles very exciting as I viewed them through a 4e lense (I never played 3e, just 1e, like 30 yrs ago, & 4e) and I can see how the ideas expressed (as I viewed them) could be great for the game.

4e lovers might get screwed, but I don't assume that, what is the point?
If you can never be tempted to buy a 5th edition there is never any reason to be the least bit swayed by what you want. The only people who are ever important in voting are the ones who can go either way. Unless of course your base is big enough that you just do not care about the other guys. They pretty much are done selling you books now anyway. The ones who want them already have them.

4E is by far the smallest slice of the market. You are the least important base, of course you are the only base they have right now. If you grognard you effectively get no say at all since you really are not the people they want. You were done in strictly by the numbers. If you want access you have to be willing to pay for it.

As a group you should decide what is the most important for you. (please do not make it the at will/encounter/daily powers since that is what so turned away the old guard)
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I have a bit of advice from my experience as a software designer - and I think it's good advice for game design too because 4E has violated it several times in the last couple years and each time has produced some degree of awkwardness.

That is:

Do a complete structural design early on. It would cover how classes work, how roles work, how power sources work, how feats and powers work, etc. Then go over that structural design with a fine-tooth comb looking for hidden assumptions. Draw them out, have a hard look at them, and either write them up as explicit assumptions or (better, but not always possible) find ways to take them out of the design without introducing even less desirable assumptions.

Then, never violate that structural design, either by doing something the design doesn't allow, or by doing something in a way that closes off part of that design and makes it inaccessible. Also never violate those remaining assumptions that the design relies on. 

That means: if there's an assumption that Basic Attacks are going to be an inferior choice, and so it's okay to hand them out like candy on Halloween, don't introduce things that make Basic Attacks the superior or default choice. It should take both circumstances and effort to bring them UP to be comparable to the whatever is supposed to be the normal choice (in 4E, that would be at-will powers).

(Quick reminder here: I expressed a preference for taking out assumptions. If you don't assume in your design that a BA is inferior, you don't need to stay true to that assumption.)

That means: start with 3D movement and combat rules, even if what you first publish is a 2D simplification of them. (Release the 3D rules before or with the first flying creature or flight-granting power. In this specific case I would favor releasing the 3D rules from the start.) Or, don't allow flight - ever, for anything.

That means: understand from day one how level progression will work for all classes - including classes you haven't even imagined yet - and if not all classes progress in the same manner, make sure you know what it will take to keep classes on different progression systems in balance.

You can leave out parts of the design if you like - allow for backgrounds, but not have any, for example. You don't have to occupy every part of the structure from day one. But don't close things off unnecessarily. 

And be extremely reluctant to change the structural design. At all. Almost always, such changes should be regarded as a new edition - particularly if they would impact already-released material, like the introduction of subclasses did.

Oh, and don't reuse names in the same design space or adjacent design spaces. Like the Hunter Ranger and the later Ranger (Hunter).

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
If you can never be tempted to buy a 5th edition there is never any reason to be the least bit swayed by what you want. The only people who are ever important in voting are the ones who can go either way. Unless of course your base is big enough that you just do not care about the other guys. They pretty much are done selling you books now anyway. The ones who want them already have them.

4E is by far the smallest slice of the market. You are the least important base, of course you are the only base they have right now. If you grognard you effectively get no say at all since you really are not the people they want. You were done in strictly by the numbers. If you want access you have to be willing to pay for it.

As a group you should decide what is the most important for you. (please do not make it the at will/encounter/daily powers since that is what so turned away the old guard)



Do you have any proof 4e players are the smallest slice of the market? Cause Amazon numbers usually show that 4e books outsell Pathfinder books. I think WotC would be incredibly foolish to not cater to some degree, and possible to a large degree, to those of us who stuck with them instead of trying to pander to those of you who turned up their noses at change. We've already shown we're more accepting of change than the Pathfinder/3.5 crowd are, we're much more likely to buy the next version than those who didn't buy 4e.

And if At Will/Encounters/Dailies don't survive in some way, shape or form, it will be a great loss for D&D. The game does not need a return to the old "fighters can't have nice things" days.

Besides, the old guard has demonstrated they really only care about being "the old guard," and not about the good of the market as a whole or in bringing in new players with a more accessible system like 4e.
If you can never be tempted to buy a 5th edition there is never any reason to be the least bit swayed by what you want. The only people who are ever important in voting are the ones who can go either way. Unless of course your base is big enough that you just do not care about the other guys. They pretty much are done selling you books now anyway. The ones who want them already have them.

4E is by far the smallest slice of the market. You are the least important base, of course you are the only base they have right now. If you grognard you effectively get no say at all since you really are not the people they want. You were done in strictly by the numbers. If you want access you have to be willing to pay for it.

As a group you should decide what is the most important for you. (please do not make it the at will/encounter/daily powers since that is what so turned away the old guard)



Can you please repost the information concerning your proof about the market?  Because all i see is smoke being blown.

Play whatever the **** you want. Never Point a loaded party at a plot you are not willing to shoot. Arcane Rhetoric. My Blog.

I have a bit of advice from my experience as a software designer - and I think it's good advice for game design too because 4E has violated it several times in the last couple years and each time has produced some degree of awkwardness.

That is:

Do a complete structural design early on. It would cover how classes work, how roles work, how power sources work, how feats and powers work, etc. Then go over that structural design with a fine-tooth comb looking for hidden assumptions. Draw them out, have a hard look at them, and either write them up as explicit assumptions or (better, but not always possible) find ways to take them out of the design without introducing even less desirable assumptions.

Then, never violate that structural design, either by doing something the design doesn't allow, or by doing something in a way that closes off part of that design and makes it inaccessible. Also never violate those remaining assumptions that the design relies on. 

That means: if there's an assumption that Basic Attacks are going to be an inferior choice, and so it's okay to hand them out like candy on Halloween, don't introduce things that make Basic Attacks the superior or default choice. It should take both circumstances and effort to bring them UP to be comparable to the whatever is supposed to be the normal choice (in 4E, that would be at-will powers).

(Quick reminder here: I expressed a preference for taking out assumptions. If you don't assume in your design that a BA is inferior, you don't need to stay true to that assumption.)

That means: start with 3D movement and combat rules, even if what you first publish is a 2D simplification of them. (Release the 3D rules before or with the first flying creature or flight-granting power. In this specific case I would favor releasing the 3D rules from the start.) Or, don't allow flight - ever, for anything.

That means: understand from day one how level progression will work for all classes - including classes you haven't even imagined yet - and if not all classes progress in the same manner, make sure you know what it will take to keep classes on different progression systems in balance.

You can leave out parts of the design if you like - allow for backgrounds, but not have any, for example. You don't have to occupy every part of the structure from day one. But don't close things off unnecessarily. 

And be extremely reluctant to change the structural design. At all. Almost always, such changes should be regarded as a new edition - particularly if they would impact already-released material, like the introduction of subclasses did.

Oh, and don't reuse names in the same design space or adjacent design spaces. Like the Hunter Ranger and the later Ranger (Hunter).




Great recommendations solid and general.
  Creative Character Build Collection and The Magic of King's and Heros  also Can Martial Characters Fly? 

Improvisation in 4e: Fave 4E Improvisations - also Wrecans Guides to improvisation beyond page 42
The Non-combatant Adventurer (aka Princess build Warlord or LazyLord)
Reality is unrealistic - and even monkeys protest unfairness
Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
"Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

 


As a group you should decide what is the most important for you. (please do not make it the at will/encounter/daily powers since that is what so turned away the old guard)



At will powers are one the best things about 4E.  I don't want to play a wizard with a crossbow because I run out of spells after the second round of combat.  You can change a lot of stuff, but a return to full on old school vancian casting means most likely I am not going to play.

Also I really hope they keep similar retraining rules.  That is one of the next favorite things about 4e vs other editions that pretty much no one complains about besides that it breaks immersion for some people.  Don't force me into a choice for the life of my PC if it doesn't work out right.

There are a lot of other things I like about 4E that I assume they are going to keep, but will be very put off if they don't.  No race/class/alignment interaction.  Leaders being able to do things besides heal most rounds.  Point buy and multiple stat bumps.  All classes being at roughly the same power level across time (I know its not perfect in 4E, but its close enough and when it isn't I don't think that its intentional).

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The OGL was a travesty, at least from WotC's perspective. The legacy of the OGL was that WotC enabled the creation of its own competition by allowing another company to legally produce a a version of their old game. Without the OGL, the creation of Pathfinder would have been rockier or might not have happened at all. I don't see WotC making the same mistake twice.



No. Paizo wanted to make OGL content for 4E. They did Pathfinder only because 4E shut them off with the unacceptable, from a 3PP standpoint, GSL. Had there been an OGL for 4E, there would be no Pathfinder, as the GSL was its direct reason for creation.

Also, an interesting quote, from one of the first "Legends & Lore" articles (3/22/2011):

Even a topic such as the volume of content released per month falls into this category. Gamers who don’t want more content can easily ignore it or disallow it in their games. A theoretical D&D release schedule could focus on the middle ground of the audience, while something like the open gaming license would allow other publishers to fill in the gaps for those who want even more content. In many cases, the trick to keeping everyone happy lies in areas beyond game design.



So, one of the first articles that were outlining their plans for 5E (even if it wasn't spelled out right back then) says in their opinion a perfect solution would be the open gaming license, which would allow 3PP to take over stuff they can't do.
Check out my D&D-based play-by-post game, based on exploration and roleplaying. Agora
This has me worried for the martial classes. If Essentials is any indication of what it will look like, I don't want the martial classes going back to being "D&D for Dummies", while the wizard becomes "Mage: The Elite". 

In other words, I really hope they look forward. The L&L articles never seemed to do that, which is why I'm worried. 
I..wow..I   I had seen this comming for awhile..I knew the way the released were going..the talk in the articles were going.  That this felt just like when 3.5 shifted over to 4e...but..I was assuming, hey its only been 5 years...and even 3.0 had 8 years), and that's without a major revision to rules (to clean up things and have a new flat solid ground, that then stuck around...yaknow a 4.5 version..essentials tried to be it but wasn't.  Things like fixuing up classes that had broken at wills, fixing up feats and features that were wrong, fixing the math.  Doing something about feats that, if you didn't take, you were pretty much being an idiot.).  But...I guess I believed too much in a gaming system actually....existing and being added onto, updated, etc, for more time than the average gaming consoles lifespan.

So yeah..comming from someone who dislikes 4e, who liked 3.5 better..who enjoys Pathfinder better than 4e (and knows 3.5 and pathfinder actually play differently and are at least different editions of the game).  Someone who thinks you did pretty much everything wrong with 4e, and actually went backwards on game design.

Leaving 4e behind, and making a new edition is a mistake.  No I don't plan to buy anymore books...in fact I only play because a few friends are stuck behind on playing 4e, and won't let it go.  And I'd rather play with them..than not, so I play 4e for their sake.  But seriously..this is EXACTLY what you did to 3.5 player..when you announced 4e.  And this is what caused pathfinder to form (not the OGL...it just gave them a license to not hide what they were doing), leaving the game half done..when multiple new ideas, fixed, and options were being seen, that could have been added to the game.  And then jumping off and leaving people who liked the old game in the dust, in order to try and get a different crowd of people to join.


So, again, comming from someone who liked 3.5..who enjoys pathfinder..who hates 4e.

The biggest mistake you can make, is to try and recapture that crowd.  3.5 and 4e play far too different.  Their entire design goals are far too different.  Some of the things that 4e players LOVE and see as improvements to 4e.....anyone who played 3.5 and previous..see as setbacks, things that get in the way, clunky systems...and bad design.  And yes...perusing the boards and seeing the language.  4e players feel the same way about anything relating to previous editions.  If you do ANYTHING to win back previous edition players, all you'll manage to do is alienate your 4e players.

And those previous edition players?  Well anyone who still wanted 3.5 have already migrated to pathfinder.  Which is a successful system and is doing well on its own.  So you arn't gonna try to pull people who currently are sitting at home with old books that don't have anymore updates.  Instead you'll be fighting another company actively for players, and since many of them got burned by the way WotC handled the transition from 3 to 4....they feel less inclined to go back to WotC because of a lil handout and a pat on the head.  They arn't dogs.


With all of that said....this is already on the way..I know it, so some simple suggestions.  When switching editions..don't villify any part of 4e.  When you did that during the 3.5 to 4e switch, that burned many people who played the older editions..to see things they loved..they enjoyed..be made fun of...to see tired old false arguements used again and again..by WotC itself, did hurt.  So try not to talk about 'leave behind the *blank*'.  Instead try to just look at what they'll be getting in return.  At least that way you won't make the people who play 4e feel that unloved.  Go back to releasing PDFs for sale...screw the piracy and just do it.  Trust me you get more money by having the PDFs for sale, even with the piracy (and sometimes because of it).  Also, on the issue of character builders, offline version...make sure it ALWAYS has an offline version.  It's useful..its handy..its fun....and if its offline it can be used when someone isn't near an internet connection, for any of multiple reasons, and trust me no matter what people say..that happens terribly often.  You'd hear about it more..but they arn't online to tell you this.

Honestly if you were really smart..you'd continue the 4e line..upgrade it...perfect it..fix up all the issues it has.  Heck with its focus on combat, find a way to make a first...turn 4e into a more modular miniatures game (you have 500 points..spend it on race, class, level, skills..items...).  If you keep the more roleplaying rules just mentioned on the side in the books, it can still be used for roleplaying too.  And then you work on, at the same time as D&D MM (modular miniatures) D&D Pathfinder....that would probably help you recapture the market.


But let me reitterate over all...I think a new edition this soon...and leaving behind all of 4e is a mistake.
This has me worried for the martial classes. If Essentials is any indication of what it will look like, I don't want the martial classes going back to being "D&D for Dummies", while the wizard becomes "Mage: The Elite". 

In other words, I really hope they look forward. The L&L articles never seemed to do that, which is why I'm worried. 



This.


I don't mind if they make casters and non-casters use different systems. As long as one does not make the other inferior, and neither are for dumbies.  
This has me worried for the martial classes. If Essentials is any indication of what it will look like, I don't want the martial classes going back to being "D&D for Dummies", while the wizard becomes "Mage: The Elite". 

In other words, I really hope they look forward. The L&L articles never seemed to do that, which is why I'm worried. 



I'm worried about this too.  I enjoyed 1st edition AD&D a lot back in the day but have no wish to go back to being the meat shield for our party's mage...  4th edition is far and away superior to its predecessors.  Hopefully they can build on that rather than taking us back to the "good old days" when a blown poison save would kill you instantly
Dividing a divided community (again) is not a good move. I just have no faith, after reading the L&L articles, that we will see forward thinking is all. I hope I'm proven wrong, but I've yet to see any evidence of that. 

There's still so much potential left in 4e, especially wiht the light release schedule since Essentials. So much more design space to explore. Even if they just focused more on campaign settings for a while, or something.

I dunno. It's almost like Essentials didn't turn out as planned, and instead of backtracking, they opted for a new edition. I only use the fact that we had an extremely aggressive release schedule at the beginning, indicating sales were going well. Otherwise, they wouldn't be investing that heavily into the releases. Since Essentials, releases have slowed to a crawl, and we had the whole DDI debacle where we were told literally nothing except "soon" for months.

The Mearls + era has yet to impress me. Please prove me wrong. 
thats a shame stafir, youre their target audience. 4e players, were the dishrags

And I'm telling them going after me as a core audience isn't going to work.

When they switched to 4e..they did things that specifically made previous players mad and unhappy.  With this set to switch to a new edition they look like they plan to do similar things...but now make people who prefer 4e mad and unhappy.  In the vague hope that people who have already purched pathfinder..will suddenly change their minds..and come back due to a simple handout.


My statement is very simple...you arn't going to get back the people who prefer systems before 4e that easily..and this method of doing it will piss off current fans.  So what will happen is a shrunken fanbase.  Even though I dislike 4e..even though i wish it was never produced and we had a properly updated 3e.  In order for wizards, as a company to live, and D&D as a brand to prosper.  They need to do what they can to keep 4e fans..and update that game..finish it up.  Otherwise they'll just piss off yet another fanbase...and get even less in return.
thats a shame stafir, youre their target audience. 4e players, were the dishrags

And I'm telling them going after me as a core audience isn't going to work.

When they switched to 4e..they did things that specifically made previous players mad and unhappy.  With this set to switch to a new edition they look like they plan to do similar things...but now make people who prefer 4e mad and unhappy.  In the vague hope that people who have already purched pathfinder..will suddenly change their minds..and come back due to a simple handout.


My statement is very simple...you arn't going to get back the people who prefer systems before 4e that easily..and this method of doing it will piss off current fans.  So what will happen is a shrunken fanbase.  Even though I dislike 4e..even though i wish it was never produced and we had a properly updated 3e.  In order for wizards, as a company to live, and D&D as a brand to prosper.  They need to do what they can to keep 4e fans..and update that game..finish it up.  Otherwise they'll just piss off yet another fanbase...and get even less in return.



In other words, like I said earlier. Dividing an already twice divided community.
Some of the things that 4e players LOVE and see as improvements to 4e.....anyone who played 3.5 and previous..see as setbacks, things that get in the way, clunky systems...and bad design.

Incorrect as stated (but I think as-stated isn't quite what you meant).

I played D&D, AD&D, 3E,, and 3.5E, and I much prefer 4E. In fact, when I moved into a motorhome, 4E books are the only D&D books that made the move.

I think what you meant to say was "anyone who prefers 3.5 and previous".

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
looks like everyone w a playtester icon has already been playing this for a while, just acting like nothings happening