There has been a lot of speculation about 4th edition ending and a newer edition coming out sometime in the near future (1-2 years). Let's assume that is true. My question is: what do we like about 4th edition that we want to see preserved. What is good about 4th? I want this thread to stay focused on 4th edition, its merits and also perhaps its problems.
What I like about 4th which I want to see preserved:
1) The basic combat system. This is the first d&d system where the basic combat rules are clean and easy to interpret and do not get in the way. 3rd edition was a nightmare to run. Basic combat is now a solved problem near as I can see.
2) The concept of different power sources. I think this is really useful.
3) The 4 defense scores. This is part of #1 but it also helps define characters, etc.
4) The equality of the classes. Fighters level up in power with wizards.
5) The concept of the different roles.
6) Themes as way to flesh out a character. (Is this just Dark Sun?)
7) The emphasis on the d20.
8) The short, digestible stat block of monsters
9) Minions! Love’em.
Here are things I think that should be changed or what I do not like:
1) Battles take too long. Monsters should have less hit points and do more damage.
The system does not lend it self to roleplaying and just ends up being a kind of one unit skirmish game. This is in part due to problem #1.
2) Skill challenges (great idea that does not work).
3) Not enough variation in characters.
4) Need a way to make magic item more individual.
5) Need a solid, supported world that is new.
6) Need faster way to create a balanced encounter.
7) Death does not seem real.
8) With so many abstractions in the powers of players (and monsters) there are no options for roleplaying in battle. More kind of general rules on how to allow for improvisation would be helpful. This is there with the level for damage tables -- I think it just needs to be emphasized and maybe fleshed out a bit. Maybe via a DM guide?
9) More skills.