Things in for DDN, based on 5-16 chat.

From the 5/16/2012 chat:

Show
"Mearls: I've been DMing mostly, and the rules have changed a lot over the past few days.  Probably the funniest thing was guest starring as a librarian in a playtest game at DDXP. Also, I got to test the DR rules when the players had to cut open a dead wererat's stomach to find a gem it had swallowed. That was not how I expected to test those rules."

"Mearls: I also pitch in as needed to get work done.  For instance, my other open window has the rules text for rituals, though those won't be in the initial playtest."


"Mearls: Probably the biggest change is in the mechanic for advantage and disadvantage. We've also have done a lot to the cleric, fleshing out domains and making those a bigger part of the class that changes a lot of stuff."

"Mearls: There are off-turn actions in the game, but the philosophy now is to have them eat into your turn or have something you have to set up. For instance, instead of everyone automatically getting opportunity attacks, a character might need to take a feat or choose an ability that basically says, "If you make a melee attack on your turn, you get one opportunity attack for the next round."

A rogue might have this - you can move away from an enemy that moves next to you, but you lose your move on your next turn."


"Mearls: We're trying to keep the list of conditions slim and make it apply to things that are obvious changes in the world. For instance, right now invisible and ethereal are on the list of conditions. We also added intoxicated. Basically, what are things that when they happen to you have a clear effect on how you interact with the world?

here's another thing - with stuff like paralyzed, we're dealing more in describing what happens rather than trying to make everything mechanical. So paralyzed says that you can' t move your limbs. Spellcasting specifies that you need to move your arms to cast a spell. Thus, a paralyzed creature can't cast spells.

The idea is that we give the DM clear mechanics, but also make it clear what's happening in the world so the DM can make any judgment calls as needed."


"Crawford: While Mike answers that, I'll say something else about race. A thing I love about our current approach is that you don't just pick your race, such as dwarf. You also pick what kind of dwarf you are."

"Mearls: I did a review of our weapon table, and I think the spear was the one weapon I didn't comment on. Probably the biggest things are rogue schemes and cleric domains."


On buying fighter maneuvers with feats:
"Mearls: And to be clear, right now if you spend a feat for maneuvers you're getting a whole suite of options to use, not just one thing."

Clarifying what cantrips will be:
"Mearls: Yes, cantrips that you use to attack are basically utility cantrips that have a way you can use them against creatures. The ignite cantrip lets you start fires, whether its lighting a torch or a goblin's butt."
"Mearls: That's a great question. We want magical to feel magical yet rooted in the world. The cantrip thing ties into this. Cantrips aren't specifically made to blast people, but a cantrip you use to create a small amount of acid as part of an alchemy experiment can also be a useful weapon. Spells should feel magical and maybe even mysterious in some way."
"Mearls: For instance, going back to cantrips, we specifically didn't want to just make a spell that was the same as a crossbow but it did fire damage. That sells magic short, IMO."



So, it looks like rituals, damage reduction, off-turn actions, somatic components, an intoxicated condition, rogue "schemes", variables for races, and cleric domains are going to be in.  What do you guys think?  What are you hoping to see from these game elements?  What are your concerns?

There are a great many problems that can be circumvented by players and DMs having a mature discussion about what the game is going to be like before they ever sit down together to play.

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

 

You really shouldn't speak for others.  You can't hear what someone else is saying when you try to put your words in their mouth.

 

Fencing & Swashbuckling as Armor.

D20 Modern Toon PC Race.

Mecha Pilot's Skill Challenge Emporium.

 

Save the breasts.

Looks pretty good to me, although I'm dissapointed we can't see a more complicated fighter in the playtest.
"So shall it be! Dear-bought those songs shall be be accounted, and yet shall be well-bought. For the price could be no other. Thus even as Eru spoke to us shall beauty not before conceived be brought into Eä, and evil yet be good to have been." - Manwë, High King of the Valar
I'm more disappointed that we will not be able to generate our own characters for the first playtest.  But we might be able to extrapolate the necessary information to "mix and match" the characters.
What are my concerns?

That people will nitpick their pet peeve features and not pay enough attention to how the game works as a whole.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
What are my concerns?

That people will nitpick their pet peeve features and not pay enough attention to how the game works as a whole.


Well, that's more of a concern with the forums (and we're all concerned with the hostility and defensiveness on the forums).  Is there anything in there that you're excited to see, whether it's coming back or being newly implemented, or anything that makes you leery?  I know there was a thread a while back about an intoxicated condition (specifically about rules for getting drunk, I think), and several people expressed concern about that or felt that it was unnecessary.

There are a great many problems that can be circumvented by players and DMs having a mature discussion about what the game is going to be like before they ever sit down together to play.

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

 

You really shouldn't speak for others.  You can't hear what someone else is saying when you try to put your words in their mouth.

 

Fencing & Swashbuckling as Armor.

D20 Modern Toon PC Race.

Mecha Pilot's Skill Challenge Emporium.

 

Save the breasts.

What are my concerns?

That people will nitpick their pet peeve features and not pay enough attention to how the game works as a whole.



I'm trying, but there is stuff I love in 4th edition that appears will just not be there or will be there in such small quantities.

For instance, if the entire concept of a defender is a theme, then that means it's more likely that there is only one way to be a defender. I like that almost every defender in 4th edition is different in how it defends and punishes. The Fighter is good at lockdown, the Paladin at punishing multiple enemies (for a few rounds at least), the Swordmage at making an enemies attack half meaningless, and the Warden at making it hard for an enemy to go anywhere or do anything

However, I am optimistic that I will enjoy both DMing and playing the game, and I look forward to seeing how good the core mechanics are. If they are good enough, we might be able to houserule 4e classes to play well with the new system, and that would be fine with me.
There's a big difference between an example and an exclusion.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
What are my concerns?

That people will nitpick their pet peeve features and not pay enough attention to how the game works as a whole.


Well, that's more of a concern with the forums (and we're all concerned with the hostility and defensiveness on the forums).  Is there anything in there that you're excited to see, whether it's coming back or being newly implemented, or anything that makes you leery?  I know there was a thread a while back about an intoxicated condition (specifically about rules for getting drunk, I think), and several people expressed concern about that or felt that it was unnecessary.



In every game I've seen that included rules for intoxication it made me think that the designer had never imbibed an alcoholic beverage in his life, but rather, got their ideas on drunkenness from a cartoon.  Here's to hoping Mearls and company enjoy a good bourbon and know what it is like.

So, it looks like rituals, damage reduction, off-turn actions, somatic components, an intoxicated condition, rogue "schemes", variables for races, and cleric domains are going to be in.  What do you guys think?  What are you hoping to see from these game elements?  What are your concerns?



Rituals: Good.
Damage Reduction: Fine.
Off-Turn Actions: Not sure this is actually an improvement, since how you have to keep track of what you lose on your upcoming turn ...
Somatic Components: Bad.  Harder to reflavor.  4e did this right, this is a major step backwards.
Intoxicated: Seems pointless, but whatever ...
Rogue Schemes: Neutral
Variables for Races: Meh.  Don't like, since I think race is too big a chunk of the character 'pie' now and I'd like to see it de-emphasized.
Cleric Domains: Neutral; it's a rare day I've any interest in playing a divine character, so what does and doesn't happen to clerics and paladins doesn't greatly concern me.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
Rituals: Meh.  They seem like an interesting tool for variant parties if the "anyone can use them" nature is maintained, at least
Damage Reduction: Glad to see it
Off-Turn Actions: Seems clunky, really.  I get what they're trying to do, reducing the number of "gotchya" and "Interrupt" details, but if you still have people acting off turn, the matter is moot.
Somatic Components: All we know now is that a bound or paralyzed caster can't cast.  I find this to be good.
Intoxicated: Whatever.
Rogue Schemes: We know nothing other than "this exists".  Neutral
Variables for Race: Do like.  I especially like a divorcing of cultural and physical traits, while retaining access to either.  Should make it easy to homebrew "X raised by Y"
Cleric Domains: Clerics of Specific Mythoi are the way to go.  Glad to hear they're in.

"Enjoy your screams, Sarpadia - they will soon be muffled beneath snow and ice."
On Worldbuilding - On Crafting Aliens - Pillars of Art and Flavor - Simulationism, Narritivism, and Gamism - Shub-Niggurath in D&D
THE COALITION WAR GAME -Phyrexian Chief Praetor
Round 1: (4-1-2, 1 kill)
Round 2: (16-8-2, 4 kills)
Round 3: (18-9-2, 1 kill)
Round 4: (22-10-0, 2 kills)
Round 5: (56-16-3, 9 kills)
Round 6: (8-7-1)

Last Edited by Ralph on blank, 1920

I actually like the new take on Opportunity Attacks since it's no longer a no-brainer. But as what Salla was somewhat mentioning, this isn't likely to change pacing; now players will take longer making decisions during out-of-turn attacks.

I like the approach taken with conditions (focus on what is going on in the world, not what the numbers are), and I'd like to see that approach taken elsewhere in the game too. It appears like it would help houseruling because the changes you make can all be inferred rather than having to change the text of every ability that assumes it. *shrugs* I've houseruled casting components in 3e to no game problems, but I told all players before the game began to avoid unfortunate surprises.
On the subject of somatic components, I've always wondered why nobody really seems to much care that fighters use somatic components.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
On the subject of somatic components, I've always wondered why nobody really seems to much care that fighters use somatic components.


People care, though the argument isn't really framed that way.  Just look back at the thread about immunities and vulnerabilities.  A large swath of that thread is an argument about whether or not fighters should be able to prone oozes.  That's basically the same argument.

There are a great many problems that can be circumvented by players and DMs having a mature discussion about what the game is going to be like before they ever sit down together to play.

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

 

You really shouldn't speak for others.  You can't hear what someone else is saying when you try to put your words in their mouth.

 

Fencing & Swashbuckling as Armor.

D20 Modern Toon PC Race.

Mecha Pilot's Skill Challenge Emporium.

 

Save the breasts.

On the subject of somatic components, I've always wondered why nobody really seems to much care that fighters use somatic components.




lolololol So true!!! 

I'm holding back my thoughts until I've actually sat down, read and have played. Things that look either good or bad now might be completely resversed come the end of the play test session so I'll just wait and see how things play out. 
"We are men of action, lies do not become us" ~ D.P.R.
From the 5/16/2012 chat:

Show
"Mearls: I've been DMing mostly, and the rules have changed a lot over the past few days.  Probably the funniest thing was guest starring as a librarian in a playtest game at DDXP. Also, I got to test the DR rules when the players had to cut open a dead wererat's stomach to find a gem it had swallowed. That was not how I expected to test those rules."

"Mearls: I also pitch in as needed to get work done.  For instance, my other open window has the rules text for rituals, though those won't be in the initial playtest."


"Mearls: Probably the biggest change is in the mechanic for advantage and disadvantage. We've also have done a lot to the cleric, fleshing out domains and making those a bigger part of the class that changes a lot of stuff."

"Mearls: There are off-turn actions in the game, but the philosophy now is to have them eat into your turn or have something you have to set up. For instance, instead of everyone automatically getting opportunity attacks, a character might need to take a feat or choose an ability that basically says, "If you make a melee attack on your turn, you get one opportunity attack for the next round."

A rogue might have this - you can move away from an enemy that moves next to you, but you lose your move on your next turn."


"Mearls: We're trying to keep the list of conditions slim and make it apply to things that are obvious changes in the world. For instance, right now invisible and ethereal are on the list of conditions. We also added intoxicated. Basically, what are things that when they happen to you have a clear effect on how you interact with the world?

here's another thing - with stuff like paralyzed, we're dealing more in describing what happens rather than trying to make everything mechanical. So paralyzed says that you can' t move your limbs. Spellcasting specifies that you need to move your arms to cast a spell. Thus, a paralyzed creature can't cast spells.

The idea is that we give the DM clear mechanics, but also make it clear what's happening in the world so the DM can make any judgment calls as needed."


"Crawford: While Mike answers that, I'll say something else about race. A thing I love about our current approach is that you don't just pick your race, such as dwarf. You also pick what kind of dwarf you are."

"Mearls: I did a review of our weapon table, and I think the spear was the one weapon I didn't comment on. Probably the biggest things are rogue schemes and cleric domains."


On buying fighter maneuvers with feats:
"Mearls: And to be clear, right now if you spend a feat for maneuvers you're getting a whole suite of options to use, not just one thing."

Clarifying what cantrips will be:
"Mearls: Yes, cantrips that you use to attack are basically utility cantrips that have a way you can use them against creatures. The ignite cantrip lets you start fires, whether its lighting a torch or a goblin's butt."
"Mearls: That's a great question. We want magical to feel magical yet rooted in the world. The cantrip thing ties into this. Cantrips aren't specifically made to blast people, but a cantrip you use to create a small amount of acid as part of an alchemy experiment can also be a useful weapon. Spells should feel magical and maybe even mysterious in some way."
"Mearls: For instance, going back to cantrips, we specifically didn't want to just make a spell that was the same as a crossbow but it did fire damage. That sells magic short, IMO."



So, it looks like rituals, damage reduction, off-turn actions, somatic components, an intoxicated condition, rogue "schemes", variables for races, and cleric domains are going to be in.  What do you guys think?  What are you hoping to see from these game elements?  What are your concerns?

My opinions at the moment.


Rituals: Never cared for this system in 4th and still do not.


Damage Reduction: Sounds good


Off turn actions: More headache then it is worth and slows everything down.


Somatic components: I am cool with this and would love to see material components back as well.

Itoxicated: Seriously?This thing should be so far down the list of things to worry about that we find out about it at the very end lol.


Rogue Schemes: Undecided,I am waiting to see if schemes and themes etc ar going to be any good.

Variables for races: Not really interested in this at all.


Cleric Domains: I do not play divine classes that much at all.I think the domains iwas always a cool idea though.                         
Eh, it was somewhat of a mixed bag. There's still some muddled thinking going on up in the WotC HQ:

Off-turn actions are only slower BECAUSE THEY ARE OFF TURN. In terms of slowing things down they did so because people might jump in and that just required more thought and allowing time for players to do it (or the inevitable "WAIT! Can we back up a bit here?"). Mike's proposed 'solution' is actually WORSE than the 4e setup where at least the action progressed the combat. In the new system you STILL have all the negative consequences, turn order can get complicated etc, AND you have to now track which actions you just used up, AND on top of that you don't get your normal turn, or part of it, which just means you don't actually get to progress the encounter using them. This will actually be slower than the 4e version. What they failed to understand was the cause of this stuff making the game slower (the need for players to take time to invoke these things and the disruption of the normal turn order). Certainly it wasn't getting more actions that made it slower. More actions = more movement to the combat being over.

OTOH rituals seem to be in, at least at this point. That's a good thing.

Intoxicated as a condition... This is another one of those "they didn't get it" things. Conditions are MECHANICAL CONSTRUCTS. They may have evocative names, but fundamentally they're just shorthand for specific mechanics which have proven to be broadly useful. Intoxicated doesn't fit into this category at all. It can already be accomodated in 4e by for instance making the character dazed or having them grant CA all the time, etc. Larding up the short list of conditions with almost-always-useless crud like 'intoxicated' (and if you're going to have that then there's a giant list of other stuff at the same level of abstraction) just makes the condition list big and ugly and redundant and we're going to have 12 different conditions that do ALMOST exactly the same thing, except you'll have to look crap up every time because nobody is going to remember a list of 50 different conditions. Dumb and useless. If there are intoxication rules then they can simply state which condition you get for BEING intoxicated, etc.

The other stuff was far too vague to form any real opinions on. I don't think there was ever any doubt that domains would exist in some fashion. I don't have a clue how their damage reduction will work or when it will be used or for what. 'Rogue Schemes' and 'Variables for Races' is just too vague to really comment on much, though I don't have a problem with the idea of 'cultural vs biological' racial stuff, that could be handy to be able to split out.

Can't say it was a font of insight, but Mike and Jeremy seemed to be enjoying themselves. We learned a few tidbits that were fun.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
As someone who felt magic in 4e was something that existed for war, I am super stonked about their cantrip idea. This, somatic components, and casting mishaps together are really shaping magic into something that is just a thing or some essence that just so happens to be effective in combat. (like power tools!)

I'm glad rituals are back. I know I complain about them when it comes to utility casters, but there are some spells that the party needs at times. Rituals gives the players more freedom when picking their class by removing the, "we need a Cleric," factor. As long as it's not the answer to a character focused on support/utility casting I'm good.

Off-turn actions? Alright. I dislike it when combat gets slow with decision paralysis, rules checking, and math. If combat is taking a while because people are doing things it's ok IMO. Off turn actions have never really felt in the way of flow to our group, so shrug.

Rogue schemes and cleric domains sound awesome; not much else to say without hearing any rules. Same goes for these conditions. Making in world sense sounds good, but I'll have to see how it actually works.

Although, reducing the importance of sight (which it sounds like they're doing with invisibility) is something seriously needed. IRL, sight can be shut down so easily: darkness, flash bangs, most things in powder form, etc. I'd rather give the impression that people in the D&D world aren't as dependent on sight then have odd things like "dark illumination" from the 3.5 darkness spell come about. 
Jeremy Crawford:

The simple stuff first: Attacks of opportunity are not in this playtest, but the system does have rules that point to the peril of making ranged attacks in melee, for instance.


What about granting combat advantage instead of opportunity attacks?
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^^Wow, is that really how I came across in that personality thing or was this chosen at random?
Jeremy Crawford:

The simple stuff first: Attacks of opportunity are not in this playtest, but the system does have rules that point to the peril of making ranged attacks in melee, for instance.


What about granting combat advantage instead of opportunity attacks?

That could be an option in the case of casting or using ranged weapons in melee. It doesn't really address the 'disengagement' question, what happens when you just move away from one enemy to attack a different one without taking any precautions (IE in 4e you can shift and then charge, but that does limit your options and doesn't negate all OAs or penalties if you were stuck to a defender). The nut of the question is how do you allow for effective defending without something like OAs?

13th Age has basically a 'saving throw' (disengagement check) that you can try to pass to move away without getting an OA. You could make that hard and fast and say you MUST pass such a check to disengage AT ALL, but that seems like it is too harsh, you can't even just turn and flee when you want to in that case, which seems wrong to me. 13a doesn't actually RESOLVE the OA issue in any case, they still exist, they just happen less often.

Back on the CA if you use a ranged attack front, if you can't really get rid of OAs entirely and preserve the "it is a bad idea to just run away from a guy with a sword that is in your face" concept then the quesiton is whether it is worth having a different mechanic (CA) for some types of situations vs other situations where OAs are used. Both are common mechanics, so I guess it could go either way. I think OAs in this case are just more consistent with earlier editions where this kind of thing generally drew extra attacks or where at least the other guy's attacks generally got resolved before the ranged attack could go off (in the case of spells, sort of). In fact 4e's OAs are interrupt speed, which means you actually CAN disrupt a caster, if you happen to knock them out with your OA or perhaps in some other situational manner (IE the caster is stunned or maybe in some cases blinded etc).
That is not dead which may eternal lie