Almost afraid to ask this one, but. . .

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where does anyone think the overall direction of the game is heading these days.  I haven't played any tabletop games in the last six months (group broke up, or rather I broke it up, but that is another story) but I had been playing DnD pretty consitantly since 4th can out before that.  I really enjoyed 4th and enjoyed seeing the system grow.  Essentials didn't freak me out, I honestly saw it as more options amond many that already existed.  But this year there has not been many products that got me excited.  The Shadowfell/Feywild books were a bit meh for me, and the Neverwinter book was a poor subsitute for a setting.  I have no interest in the boxed games they have put out.  To me, the product line is feeling very full, at least in terms of core rules, and WoTC is to big a beast to survive on splatbooks and adventures like a smaller game house can.  They need to sell hardbacks, and a bunch of them.  To me it feels like the product cycle is coming to an end.

So, not wanting to start a flame war, a riot, or a case of indigestion for anyone, but where are we headed?  Another year of increasingly obscure supliments?  Are we going to dive into powercreep to keep the books coming out (even more than we have)?  Or. . . I'll say it. . .

5th edition?

I know they usually have a big Con in Feb. when they showcase the lineup for the year.  Lets start the wild speculation on what we will see.
 
The direction of my current game is forward. We've played every-other-week for two years now, and are 13th and 14th level. We've recognized the "bigger picture" of what we thought were local and regional incidents, learning that this is something much alrger -- with evidence that it is global.

This is all that matters to me. I believe 5th edition is coming out in the next 12 to 24 months. But until it is *released* I am not concerned.
Here are the PHB essentia, in my opinion:
  • Three Basic Rules (p 11)
  • Power Types and Usage (p 54)
  • Skills (p178-179)
  • Feats (p 192)
  • Rest and Recovery (p 263)
  • All of Chapter 9 [Combat] (p 264-295)
A player needs to read the sections for building his or her character -- race, class, powers, feats, equipment, etc. But those are PC-specific. The above list is for everyone, regardless of the race or class or build or concept they are playing.
i'm personally expecting essentials treatment for more classes before 5th edition, as well as the still-missing mage schools.

Some epic adventure support would be great, there's been a huge outcry for it in fact.


As for 5e? maybe the year after we'll get an announcement, i think we're still inthe market research phase of development (looks at all the polls recently in Legends and Lore)

i wouldn't mind it i guess, i want to get full use out of my 4e stuff first (and i love 4e, ALOT), but eventually, i could see my self switching over, it would have to be on the promsie that 5e'd have a logner cycle though. The quality of the new edition, and my economic situation at the time would determine how soon i bother to make the switch

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/8.jpg)

We'll be getting various themed player's option book for the next little while, as well as a large DM's boxset (BoVD) and a new setting each year. Frankly, 4e has only gotten better for me since Essentials. Shadowfell/Feywild was great. Neverwinter was great. Heroes of Shadow was fun, despite the horrible crunch. I feel 4e is the best so far.

Of course, that won't stop 5e being announced at GenCon 2014, but that should be pretty obvious to everyone.
If its time to talk about 5th edition, then its time to talk about radical errata to fix 4th edition.

4e has the ability to evolve by means of errata. We dont need 5e.

We can tinker with 4e, rethink it, clean it up, make it more friendly, more efficient, make it shine.
While I agree with your sentimate, but 5e on the 40th anniversary is marketing gold.
While I agree with your sentimate, but 5e on the 40th anniversary is marketing gold.




This, nuf said.
I don't think WoTC would deal out the amount of errata needed to properly 'make it shine', it would invalidate far too many books.


Right now they're even scared to fix relatively easy to fix things that have been plagueing this edition from day 1. Instead they just make feats, and I dont even mean just expertise.  
Lets start the wild speculation on what we will see.
 



Whaddaya mean, start?
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
I don't think WoTC would deal out the amount of errata needed to properly 'make it shine', it would invalidate far too many books.


Right now they're even scared to fix relatively easy to fix things that have been plagueing this edition from day 1. Instead they just make feats, and I dont even mean just expertise.


Yeah, but thats the point.

If 4e players are actually talking about 5e, and replacing 4e, then its time to stop being shy about errata.

You could even have your cake and eat it too.

You could do all of the errata for 4e online, digitally thru DDI, only for those gamers who want it. Then, when the time comes, this erratad version of 4e can actually become the hardcopies that you market as “5e”.
I don't think WoTC would deal out the amount of errata needed to properly 'make it shine', it would invalidate far too many books.


Right now they're even scared to fix relatively easy to fix things that have been plagueing this edition from day 1. Instead they just make feats, and I dont even mean just expertise.


Yeah, but thats the point.

If 4e players are actually talking about 5e, and replacing 4e, then its time to stop being shy about errata.

You could even have your cake and eat it too.

You could do all of the errata for 4e online, digitally thru DDI, only for those gamers who want it. Then, when the time comes, this erratad version of 4e can actually become the hardcopies that you market as “5e”.



As much as I would like to see this happen I dont think the current design team have the spine or skill to. Come on we are talking about a group that thinks bandaid feats are the height of game design.
Heh. It seems Essentials was actually a (failed) attempt to errata the rules.

The problem is, the designers have to stop with the “surprises”. When making any dramatic changes, the community must be aware of the proposed errata, be able to decide whether they can live with it or not, provide feedback to finetune and improve the errata, BEFORE the changes ever become official.

Its easy for the community to decide what they dont like, but difficult for the community to agree on what they do like. So identifying those fixes that most of the community can live with is a challenge.

I mean, I like your idea and all. Unfortunately I think it'd require too much change to go on at WoTC than it'd likely ever do without like, an actual edition change. You have to consider:


Distributing the errata via DDI. Does the CB support it? Are all DDI users forced to use it? What if it radically changes some peoples characters too much and suddenly there's a massive group of whiners? What if a DM who uses the CB alot doesn't want to radically update? The CB would then need some sort of optional version of the rules control, and also be able to differentiate between uh "4.x" errata  and normal errata in order to fix stuff like they normally do. You also have the issue of these people knee-jerking, and have to be told, en-masse, that they can revert to the old version. Or on the flip side, that the new version exists for those who want to use the newer versions. This requires alot of fundamental changes to a CB which is still playing catch-up in some places to its predecessor.


How does this effect books that come out during the time? They use the 'current' rules and all us DDI people get errata to these too? I guess this depends how radical the changes are. 


The team's current level of quality control. Theme power is all over the place, some really weak classes have been produced. Radiant and Charging for some reason continues to receive new types of support for some reason.

The team's current nastalgia trip. We get told on a weekly basis how things were better in the old days in L&L columns. How many changes would actually be made to fix 4e, rather than "restore it to its classical form"?

Would releasing it later as 5e really change enough to be considered 5e? Would the  community just consider it a 4.5? Unless they really...really changed things it'd seem like its the same books again just with errata.


Is it really economically feasable? Would WoTC even consider trying it to be economically feasable? Depending on how massive an errata they do, they'd have to sift through thousands of elements without actually charging us anything extra. Their current errata format is kind of cumbersome to read through if they do do massive change, they'd probably need something closer to the 3.x SRD which further devalues buying books.  

Heh. It seems Essentials was actually a (failed) attempt to errata the rules.



Essentials attempted to do alot of things. I think the only thing it truely succeeded at was providing simpler classes for beginners. 
5E's purpose is to reunite the 3E and 4E bases (read: more customers.) It absolutely will not be "4.5" or an errated 4E, the 3Ers will see through that very quickly.

Massive eratta would be nice, but look at it from their perspective; why should they put that much investment in a condemned system, when 5E will differ enough that much will not carry over? There's a reason we are seeing less 4E products and not more.
5E's purpose is to reunite the 3E and 4E bases (read: more customers.) It absolutely will not be "4.5" or an errated 4E, the 3Ers will see through that very quickly.

Massive eratta would be nice, but look at it from their perspective; why should they put that much investment in a condemned system, when 5E will differ enough that much will not carry over? There's a reason we are seeing less 4E products and not more.



The trick to re-uniting the 3e and 4e bases it do it without alienating vast portions of either base, or else your going to get simply 3e, 4e, and 5e bases. This will be very difficult as 3e and 4e are very opposite in places.


Just as 3e fans would see a 5e close to 4e as "4.5" so would 4e fans see a 5e close to 3e as  "3.75"


How do you motivate the 3e base? Pathfinder ended up not changeing a whole lot over 3.5 due to people not liking too much change.  
5E's purpose is to reunite the 3E and 4E bases (read: more customers.) It absolutely will not be "4.5" or an errated 4E, the 3Ers will see through that very quickly.

Massive eratta would be nice, but look at it from their perspective; why should they put that much investment in a condemned system, when 5E will differ enough that much will not carry over? There's a reason we are seeing less 4E products and not more.



The trick to re-uniting the 3e and 4e bases it do it without alienating vast portions of either base, or else your going to get simply 3e, 4e, and 5e bases. This will be very difficult as 3e and 4e are very opposite in places.


Just as 3e fans would see a 5e close to 4e as "4.5" so would 4e fans see a 5e close to 3e as  "3.75"  

Forget it. The rift is too large, the ideas too divergent, and blood came.

For a while, the 3th ed/Pathfinder and 4th ed clans are opposed or just too divergent.

Accept it, and move on - by trying to please BOTH, you may loose BOTH. 
I mean, I like your idea and all. Unfortunately I think it'd require too much change to go on at WoTC than it'd likely ever do without like, an actual edition change. You have to consider:


Distributing the errata via DDI. Does the CB support it? Are all DDI users forced to use it? What if it radically changes some peoples characters too much and suddenly there's a massive group of whiners? What if a DM who uses the CB alot doesn't want to radically update? The CB would then need some sort of optional version of the rules control, and also be able to differentiate between uh "4.x" errata  and normal errata in order to fix stuff like they normally do. You also have the issue of these people knee-jerking, and have to be told, en-masse, that they can revert to the old version. Or on the flip side, that the new version exists for those who want to use the newer versions. This requires alot of fundamental changes to a CB which is still playing catch-up in some places to its predecessor.


Basically the Character Builder just needs a button: press it to use the “beta test for the upcoming rules errata”.

If the beta seems to go over well, then stick with it for “5e”. Forumers will talk about any interesting changes, and even people who dont use the rules beta, can get a sense of what is going on, if they hear about something that they care about.

The thing is, the gaming company needs to know if there is a “massive group of whiners” -- or a massive group of applauders -- BEFORE the changes become official.


 
How does this effect books that come out during the time? They use the 'current' rules and all us DDI people get errata to these too? I guess this depends how radical the changes are.

Yeah, it depends how radical the changes are.



The team's current level of quality control. Theme power is all over the place, some really weak classes have been produced. Radiant and Charging for some reason continues to receive new types of support for some reason.

Well, if there is anything that helps quality control, its getting feedback from as many players as possible before it ever hits official print. Beta is good for quality control.


 
The team's current nastalgia trip. We get told on a weekly basis how things were better in the old days in L&L columns. How many changes would actually be made to fix 4e, rather than "restore it to its classical form"?

Yeah, that regression worries me. But there are sensible designers, who understand the importance of the advances that 4e accomplished.

If the designers dont “surprise” the community, and the community knows what is on its way, via public beta testing, then aspects of the “classical form” that prove unpopular wont ever happen.  



Would releasing it later as 5e really change enough to be considered 5e? Would the  community just consider it a 4.5? Unless they really...really changed things it'd seem like its the same books again just with errata.

This seems a nonissue. I cant tell the difference between 1e and 2e. If there are people who cant tell the difference between 4e and 5e, that would be “classical”.
 

  
Is it really economically feasable? Would WoTC even consider trying it to be economically feasable? Depending on how massive an errata they do, they'd have to sift through thousands of elements without actually charging us anything extra. Their current errata format is kind of cumbersome to read through if they do do massive change, they'd probably need something closer to the 3.x SRD which further devalues buying books.



If it is feasible to do 5e. Then it is even more feasible to renovate 4e. It is urgent to get feedback from the community to figure out what kinds of rules most players need. It is convenient to sell the renovation as 5e without even interfering with the 4e books that some gamers use exclusively without the online environment.
I almost wonder if D&D is self-defeating at this point.


People get so attached to certain rulesets, and they also introduce new players to those rulesets.


Thus you get a constantly dwindling paying fanbase as you go through each new version, unless you can make up this difference with new players (which 4e tried to do with its simplicity...and essentials tried to do again) and have to compete to some degree with your prior versions. Old copies and pdfs of these books are all over the internet, an un-changing, time-tested, possibly free, system is very attractive to some people.


By changing too much, you risk losing customers due to too much. But by staying the same, you risk people getting bored, and running out of new ideas for stuff.


But yeah, WoTC is definitely not very good at pleasing "both parties". It already has issues balancing the "fluff" vs "crunch" groups, both of whom will likely continously demand more of what they prefer. 
I almost wonder if D&D is self-defeating at this point.


People get so attached to certain rulesets, and they also introduce new players to those rulesets.


Thus you get a constantly dwindling paying fanbase as you go through each new version, unless you can make up this difference with new players (which 4e tried to do with its simplicity...and essentials tried to do again) and have to compete to some degree with your prior versions. Old copies and pdfs of these books are all over the internet, an un-changing, time-tested, possibly free, system is very attractive to some people.


By changing too much, you risk losing customers due to too much. But by staying the same, you risk people getting bored, and running out of new ideas for stuff.


But yeah, WoTC is definitely not very good at pleasing "both parties". It already has issues balancing the "fluff" vs "crunch" groups, both of whom will likely continously demand more of what they prefer. 

You can thank Paizzo's pseudoleftist 'we fight the Man for REAL D&D' for the sore state of this communauty as well.

Instead of going on gently, they FANNED the fanrage and fueled the fires on the other side. 
You can thank Paizzo's pseudoleftist 'we fight the Man for REAL D&D' for the sore state of this communauty as well.

Instead of going on gently, they FANNED the fanrage and fueled the fires on the other side. 



It definitely worked out for them. It often helps being the 'new kid' (yes I'm aware they've been around for quite a while, but pathfinder hasn't) on the block, because you can find where the "old guy" has displeased certain groups and latch onto them.

Its how other MMO's have competed with WoW as well, especially recently, by latching onto aspects of the game that people feel blizzard has abandoned and focusing on making them better.


Though D&D had a rockier version of this due to more radical changes between 3e and 4e, where as WoW's changes have been a bit more gradual, due to the nature of patches, and a more frequent 'expansion' cycle compared to D&D editions.  
You can thank Paizzo's pseudoleftist 'we fight the Man for REAL D&D' for the sore state of this communauty as well.

Instead of going on gently, they FANNED the fanrage and fueled the fires on the other side. 



It definitely worked out for them. It often helps being the 'new kid' (yes I'm aware they've been around for quite a while, but pathfinder hasn't) on the block, because you can find where the "old guy" has displeased certain groups and latch onto them.

Its how other MMO's have competed with WoW as well, especially recently, by latching onto aspects of the game that people feel blizzard has abandoned and focusing on making them better.


Though D&D had a rockier version of this due to more radical changes between 3e and 4e, where as WoW's changes have been a bit more gradual, due to the nature of patches, and a more frequent 'expansion' cycle compared to D&D editions.  

Yet, it is farsicaly hypocrital because of a few details - first, they are corporates like WOTC, only smaller, and second, they are feeding the spirit they are 'defending D&D', and the snobyness toward 4th ed and it's players. Notice how pathfinder stuff is allowed here, but Paizzo 4th ed threads are... closed shut down quick, or flamed. 

And the books are, fans's rosey glasses be damned, more or less minors updates to 3,5. WOTC had the guts at least to dare and offers new ideas. Note that many posters on the web, since years, always said 'why make a new edition if it's more or less an update to the past one?' - like AD&D1 and 2.

All in all, it's a pilefest of hatred on WOTC and the 4th ed fans, and we are to 'loose' and 'fails', we are 'wrong'. 
I'm actually kind of curious as to how Paizo plans to keep Pathfinder alive, or rather, profitable in the long run.  They do release new things, and I hear they make great adventures, but a 'pathfinder 2" would kind of defeat the purpose of pathfinder, no?
I'm actually kind of curious as to how Paizo plans to keep Pathfinder alive, or rather, profitable in the long run.  They do release new things, and I hear they make great adventures, but a 'pathfinder 2" would kind of defeat the purpose of pathfinder, no?

'New' is subjective - it's spins on the older editions's tropes. THAT is the problem.

One day, they may have to put another edition, and my evil side is cackling in glee as they may start fighting inside as well, 'purists' VS 'pros'... 
I almost wonder if D&D is self-defeating at this point.


People get so attached to certain rulesets, and they also introduce new players to those rulesets.


Thus you get a constantly dwindling paying fanbase as you go through each new version, unless you can make up this difference with new players (which 4e tried to do with its simplicity...and essentials tried to do again) and have to compete to some degree with your prior versions. Old copies and pdfs of these books are all over the internet, an un-changing, time-tested, possibly free, system is very attractive to some people.


By changing too much, you risk losing customers due to too much. But by staying the same, you risk people getting bored, and running out of new ideas for stuff.


But yeah, WoTC is definitely not very good at pleasing "both parties". It already has issues balancing the "fluff" vs "crunch" groups, both of whom will likely continously demand more of what they prefer. 

You can thank Paizzo's pseudoleftist 'we fight the Man for REAL D&D' for the sore state of this communauty as well.

Instead of going on gently, they FANNED the fanrage and fueled the fires on the other side. 



Well, yeah, but it got their product line to sell, so you really can't expect them to do anything else.  I think the folks at Pathfinder would rather have a divided fanbase and be game designers than a united fanbased and have a job a the local coffee house.  I recently took a look at Pathfinder, actually, and while I think I would play that before 3.x I would still want to play 4th ed first.  Its still wizards who use crossbows and full on Vancian magic and fighters who don't have much interesting to do.  

If its time to talk about 5th edition, then its time to talk about radical errata to fix 4th edition.

4e has the ability to evolve by means of errata. We dont need 5e.

We can tinker with 4e, rethink it, clean it up, make it more friendly, more efficient, make it shine.



Errata doesn't pay the bills.  WoTC is a big company by game design standards.  If your game company is three guys and someone's girlfriend who does the shipping you can put out a set of core rules and then write supliments till the cows come home, mostly in .pdf, and still keep the doors open.  WoTC has a big nut, lots of people on staff.  They need to sell books to survive.  The 4th edition clean up, if it comes, would have to be a saleable product, which basically means 4.5, or 4th ed the ominubus edition, or the aniversary edition, or some such, which is basically 5th edition with another name and less design work.

I think it's too bad WotC vowed to never make a 4.5.  I think a reboot of 4e would be better than a 5e (especially if it incorporates all the nostalgic old school nonsense we are seeing in the L&L collumns).

They could clean up the feats and powers, have sub-classes (rather than builds) for all the classes, drop the classes and rcaes that aren't popular (I'm looking at you shardmind runepriest), and actually have up to date information in the books rather than total reliance on DDI.  Since it is still the same sytsem, the infrastructure in place for the CB and MB is still valid, and since monsters and traps probably won't change much, most of the DM-centric books and adventures can be used without issue.

Realistically, I know the intent of a 5e would be to bring back some of the PF crowd.  The Essentials was an attempt to do so as well, but since it is still 4e (and thus a bad thing in that circle) I'm pretty sure it fell short in that regard.  If 5e can retain most of the 4e crowd and win back half the PF crowd its still a net gain, but if the goal is to get everyone in both camps to switch over I think they are setting themselves up to fail.

I love D&D more than I could ever love a human child.

I can only speak for myself here.

I have never, and will never, give Pathfinder a single penny.   IMO, 3e was by far the worst ruleset of D&D.

I love 4e and long to see it thrive, although I can understand WOTC's need to continually generate income and therefore, new versions.
I think it's too bad WotC vowed to never make a 4.5.  I think a reboot of 4e would be better than a 5e (especially if it incorporates all the nostalgic old school nonsense we are seeing in the L&L collumns).

They could clean up the feats and powers, have sub-classes (rather than builds) for all the classes, drop the classes and rcaes that aren't popular (I'm looking at you shardmind runepriest), and actually have up to date information in the books rather than total reliance on DDI.  Since it is still the same sytsem, the infrastructure in place for the CB and MB is still valid, and since monsters and traps probably won't change much, most of the DM-centric books and adventures can be used without issue.

Realistically, I know the intent of a 5e would be to bring back some of the PF crowd.  The Essentials was an attempt to do so as well, but since it is still 4e (and thus a bad thing in that circle) I'm pretty sure it fell short in that regard.  If 5e can retain most of the 4e crowd and win back half the PF crowd its still a net gain, but if the goal is to get everyone in both camps to switch over I think they are setting themselves up to fail.



You make my shardmind and my runepriest sad.
They are already doing "Domains" for the cleric, I don' think there'll be a 5e untill after we see all the Sorcerer Bloodlines following the Essentials Sorcerer

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Look at my Playable Illithid, my Monster Generating excel file , my Lifestealer in progresss (Heroic tier almost complete!) , our Improved Orc, our Improving Kenku and our Improving Duergar
Also, take a look at my friend's Improved Minotaur, Gadren's amazing Arcane Archer and of course the Avatar Project
More links! Qube's Block Builder, Classless D&D and the characters I've created using the classless system.
People get so attached to certain rulesets, and they also introduce new players to those rulesets.

Thus you get a constantly dwindling paying fanbase as you go through each new version,

I don't see the latter following the former. If anything, I have found that each new editions makes it easier for me to find players. It has been my experience that more new players come into the game than there are old players sticking to the previous edition only.


  • My Basic D&D games had the same five of us playing from initiation to the release of 1e. We were all the first people we new to play D&D. We never had a person familiar to the game join us and we never found someone else who played in our school.

  • My 1e AD&D games involved four of the Basic group moving into AD&D. Over the 1e life, we had half a dozen different games begin and end before the release of 2e. There was a solid core of us that moved from game to game, but we always had one or two new players each time.

  • My 2e AD&D games were mostly a continuation of 1e, although when we found new players for our game, they tended to be new-to-D&D.

  • 3e D&D found me invited to someone else's game before I even knew there was a new edition (that was how I learned about it!). I am two others in that first game were experienced D&D players. From that point on, through 3e, the number of new-to-D&D players matched the number of old hands.

  • For 3.5 D&D, similar to 2e, it seemed like a continuation of the player base, with experienced players outnumbering new-to-the-game.

  • With 4e D&D, I (as DM) have introduced three different completely-new-to-D&D groups to the game -- 24 players total. But in the games I have been invited to play in, the mix was roughly a 2:1 new:old ratio. And I find games going on all over the place. My youth group (I facilitate), my former place of employment, the camp I taught at this summer, my nephews' school... everywhere has experienced 4e D&D players. And inviting new players into the fold is easier than ever.


I do not think D&D is a constantly dwindling fan base. I have found it to be ever-expanding.
Here are the PHB essentia, in my opinion:
  • Three Basic Rules (p 11)
  • Power Types and Usage (p 54)
  • Skills (p178-179)
  • Feats (p 192)
  • Rest and Recovery (p 263)
  • All of Chapter 9 [Combat] (p 264-295)
A player needs to read the sections for building his or her character -- race, class, powers, feats, equipment, etc. But those are PC-specific. The above list is for everyone, regardless of the race or class or build or concept they are playing.

Just as 3e fans would see a 5e close to 4e as "4.5" so would 4e fans see a 5e close to 3e as  "3.75"


How do you motivate the 3e base? Pathfinder ended up not changeing a whole lot over 3.5 due to people not liking too much change.  



Yep 3.75 would also not work. Although Wizards should have an easier time of "killing" 4E between the lack of an OGL and their control over DDI, but still, 3.75 would be a bad plan.

Indeed the solution is not easy. That's why you see Cooke and Mearls brainstorming all these crazy ideas. They seem to be inclining towards a simple rulebase/stronger DM and nonstandard rule variants or plug-in modules to let tables customize their experience more.
I'm new to D&D (or at least, new in the sense that I started with 4e). Seeker is probably right: there's plenty of new people getting into D&D. Pathfinder and 4e are probably both growing in amount of people playing (though, I expect that Pathfinder may have a greater ratio of old people: new people).

Truthfully, I don't know where the overall direction of D&D is going. Recent products have failed to inspire me and my expanding real life is limiting how much I play, post, or chat about D&D. I ~hope~ that 4.5 is what we'll see in the years to come. If not, I'll see what 5e looks like and go from there.
I'm actually kind of curious as to how Paizo plans to keep Pathfinder alive, or rather, profitable in the long run.  They do release new things, and I hear they make great adventures, but a 'pathfinder 2" would kind of defeat the purpose of pathfinder, no?

Yeah, I've wondered about that too. It seems to me that Paizo has pretty well boxed themselves in with PF. Clearly they've come to the same conclusion, and what was the result? The Beginner Box, which if you look at it is just a slightly stripped-down version of PF. The clear conclusion has to be that their option is they'll have to recruit a whole new core of players. Notice this is pretty much the same thing that WotC or any other company selling an RPG product will have to do, add new players to replace or expand on existing ones. At some point though Paizo is going to want to refresh their system and it will be interesting to see if they can manage to keep people happy with a new version or if they will basically be stuck making 3.8 and 3.9 and 3.10 etc forever until they're irrelevant.

IMHO WotC would be better off simply continuing with 4e, maybe revising it enough to call it 5e at some point, but just continue to make a game that is pretty much like 4e and appeals to the same base and just keep making better starter sets. The way they're going to compete is the old-fashioned way,  bring in more new players than the competition and make them happy with a good product. Honestly they have a huge leg up on Paizo there, they own a giant heap of brand recognition and are part of a company that has the ability to do limitless amounts of market research and branding. In the long run they'll have to really badly botch things to lose out to Paizo.

IMHO the worst thing they can do is simply try to imitate Paizo and go after the people playing PF now specifically. That might SEEM like some kind of wonderful plan as there are certainly quite a few people playing it, but aren't a lot of them also playing 4e already? Just how much is there to be gained? Even if they succeeded they'd just be basically where they are now, needing to continue to add new players or dwindle to nothing. Nor will the OGL go away. A limitless number of Paizo's can come along and make games that are essentially 'D&D' of some fashion. Nothing is going to change that except just continuing to perfect your game and making sure that the people that play it like it and that it is the game most new players are exposed to, because lets face it, most people tend to stick with something like what they first played.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
I would just like to see a revision of the rules rather than an entirely new ruleset. If they do a 4.5, I think they should focus more on how they present the info rather than actually changing the info. Instead of saying a fighter has "powers", say he has special attacks, etc. 

Thankfully, they have slowed down the number of books they are releasing, it was getting far too hectic out there.

The biggest thing they should focus on is the length of combat. By far, I think that is the number one complaint.

As for the PF v 4E war - I say, the best revenge is living well. Look for new players, and please the ones you have. Work on making what you have the best it can be. The 3.x crowd left with such sound and fury that it seemed a bigger problem than it actually was. The success of PF will slowly die down and level out, simply because the fervor of its fans will start to wear off. Their hatred will slowly subside, and they won't be buying to teach anyone a lesson anymore.

The people that stormed out, taking their toys with them are not really the kind of people you want to attract  back as customers - if they come back, they will bring their poison with them.

Also, I would like to see an end to DDO, and a new MMO based on 4E in its place. I think this would draw in a new generation of customers that were born and bred in a high-tech landscape. 
I would just like to see a revision of the rules rather than an entirely new ruleset. If they do a 4.5, I think they should focus more on how they present the info rather than actually changing the info. Instead of saying a fighter has "powers", say he has special attacks, etc. 



You mean like: 



Fighter Powers
Your powers are called exploits. Some work better for
great weapon fighters and some work better for guardian
fighters, but you can choose any power you like
when you reach a level that allows you to choose a new
power. The choice of weapon you make also provides
benefits to certain fighter powers.


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

I would just like to see a revision of the rules rather than an entirely new ruleset. If they do a 4.5, I think they should focus more on how they present the info rather than actually changing the info. Instead of saying a fighter has "powers", say he has special attacks, etc. 



You mean like: 



Fighter Powers
Your powers are called exploits. Some work better for
great weapon fighters and some work better for guardian
fighters, but you can choose any power you like
when you reach a level that allows you to choose a new
power. The choice of weapon you make also provides
benefits to certain fighter powers.





An exploit still doesn't sound fighter-y, to me. It sounds more like something a rogue would do. What I really mean is present it in a way that doesn't mention powers at all. Also, remove the block formatting, and return to a prose format. I don't want to read a technical manual, I want to read a game manual.

Lastly, did you notice the header is "Fighter Powers." There is one throw-away line about them being called exploits, but they quickly return to calling them powers again. Why even say they are exploits if you are going to call them powers again from then on.

Here is how it should have read:
Fighter Special Attacks

Fighters use special attacks in combat called maneuvers. Some work better for
great weapon fighters and some work better for guardian
fighters, but you can choose any maneuver you like
when you reach a level that allows you to choose a new
maneuver. The choice of weapon you make also provides
benefits to certain fighter maneuvers.

It took me all of 60 seconds to make that paragraph 1 million times better.

PS - WotC, I am available for hire as a contract editor. My qualifications include: English degree, 10 years of teaching high school English, and a lifelong interest in fantasy literature, movies, and games. I'm also a Pisces.
I would just like to see a revision of the rules rather than an entirely new ruleset. If they do a 4.5, I think they should focus more on how they present the info rather than actually changing the info. Instead of saying a fighter has "powers", say he has special attacks, etc. 



You mean like: 



Fighter Powers
Your powers are called exploits. Some work better for
great weapon fighters and some work better for guardian
fighters, but you can choose any power you like
when you reach a level that allows you to choose a new
power. The choice of weapon you make also provides
benefits to certain fighter powers.





An exploit still doesn't sound fighter-y, to me. It sounds more like something a rogue would do. What I really mean is present it in a way that doesn't mention powers at all. Also, remove the block formatting, and return to a prose format. I don't want to read a technical manual, I want to read a game manual.

Lastly, did you notice the header is "Fighter Powers." There is one throw-away line about them being called exploits, but they quickly return to calling them powers again. Why even say they are exploits if you are going to call them powers again from then on.

Here is how it should have read:
Fighter Special Attacks

Fighters use special attacks in combat called maneuvers. Some work better for
great weapon fighters and some work better for guardian
fighters, but you can choose any maneuver you like
when you reach a level that allows you to choose a new
maneuver. The choice of weapon you make also provides
benefits to certain fighter maneuvers.

It took me all of 60 seconds to make that paragraph 1 million times better.

PS - WotC, I am available for hire as a contract editor. My qualifications include: English degree, 10 years of teaching high school English, and a lifelong interest in fantasy literature, movies, and games. I'm also a Pisces.



Besides renaming everything from exploits have you even read the rest of the fighter entry?  every level of "Powers" reads:

Level 1 At-Will Exploits
Level 2 Utility Exploits
etc...

In fact in most of the book there are no fighter "powers" but Fighter Exploits.

Personally I also disagree with moving away from the powerblock.  It makes every class easier to transition into.  with the standard layout I dont have to worry about keywords getting lost in the prose or confusion on what a power is actually doing.

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

As for the PF v 4E war - I say, the best revenge is living well. Look for new players, and please the ones you have. Work on making what you have the best it can be. The 3.x crowd left with such sound and fury that it seemed a bigger problem than it actually was. The success of PF will slowly die down and level out, simply because the fervor of its fans will start to wear off. Their hatred will slowly subside, and they won't be buying to teach anyone a lesson anymore.

The people that stormed out, taking their toys with them are not really the kind of people you want to attract  back as customers - if they come back, they will bring their poison with them.

 



You expect people to stick around if you refer to them as poisonous, hateful children?

Back in 3rd edition, we were one large group of brothers and sisters, all sharing ideas for the game we loved. They didnt leave out of spite, they left because they were forced to, or felt unwelcome. It's a sad thing they moved on and uniting the community would be a very good thing. It starts with a bit of tolerance, understanding and cutting out those venom filled views.


I think the word exploit works fine a fighters best moves the ones he cant do at-will are not at-will because he is exploiting an unpredictable circumstance that doesnt come up constantly and is not directly under his control.

At-wills are more maneuvers... but even some of them might be presented as a circumstantial exploit since after a few levels and when you have a human with 3 or so dont get used that often either.
  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."

 

 
Back in 3rd edition, we were one large group of brothers and sisters, all sharing ideas for the game we loved. They didnt leave out of spite, they left because they were forced to, or felt unwelcome. It's a sad thing they moved on and uniting the community would be a very good thing. It starts with a bit of tolerance, understanding and cutting out those venom filled views.





Cut out the entire crowd who have said 4th edition isnt D&D even once I am sure the rest are welcome.... note I think you would be gone 
  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."

 


Back in 3rd edition, we were one large group of brothers and sisters, all sharing ideas for the game we loved. They didnt leave out of spite, they left because they were forced to, or felt unwelcome. It's a sad thing they moved on and uniting the community would be a very good thing. It starts with a bit of tolerance, understanding and cutting out those venom filled views.


Since when? Do you think that the people who are on the 4e side of the 3e/4e argument were satisfied with 3e when there wasn't a 4e? Face it: 3e and 4e both had features that alienated some of their player base. You're looking through rosy-tinted glasses.