Rule of Three - June 26th

Rule of Three
6/26/12
by Rodney Thompson

You've got questions—we've got answers! Here's how it works—each week, our Community Manager will be scouring all available sources to find whatever questions you're asking. We'll pick three of them for R&D to answer.

Talk about this article here.

1) I hope they are printing a campaign sheet if they are going to have all these stand alone rules.

2) Normal= Attack or Improvise. Maneuver= Attack and Improvise

3) Huh?

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

Ultimately a wizard is one who by years of study and experimentation of Nature's Arcane Laws gains the ability to use magical power.  The rest is details. 

That's been the ICONIC definition of a wizard from the beginning and is common in much of fantasy (most of which is non-Vancian I hasten to add).

This does NOT preclude the Vancian wizard, but there is room and should be room for Non-Vancian wizards too espeically when there is a large amount of support for it and a large number of people that DON'T want Vancian magic but DO want to be wizards.

-Polaris
No I think he's saying that we won't play D&D Next because Vancian casting as a wizard is the only way to go.  In other words, stuff that stay not because the player chose it, not because the DM chose it, but because the developers chose it... and of all reasons to choose it and only it as the only option for playing wizard, it just had to be for tradition's sake.  There's no "here are the different ways to be a wizard", there's only "this is the way to be a wizard, choose a different class if you don't want it."

The exact reason why I love Essentials isn't because the subclasses are simpler, but it's because it expands what is already in the game.  No longer are you tied to just one Fighter class, but you have a Fighter class-as-archetype, with subclasses having various packages.  No longer are you tied to just one Wizard class, but you have a Wizard class-as-archetype, with subclasses showing how you can play different types of Wizards [they may have different subclass names -- Witch, Bladesinger, Sha'ir -- but they're still Wizards nevertheless].

If martial maneuvers are a means to make a simple warrior complicated, then stat up a simple spellcaster and give Vancian spellcasting as a means to make the simple spellcaster complicated.  It's only fair. 



But it's still a label problem. You guys seem to be upset because the non-vancian casters will be labelled mage or sorcerer instead of wizard. What's the word in English again? Tantrum?
No I think he's saying that we won't play D&D Next because Vancian casting as a wizard is the only way to go.  In other words, stuff that stay not because the player chose it, not because the DM chose it, but because the developers chose it... and of all reasons to choose it and only it as the only option for playing wizard, it just had to be for tradition's sake.  There's no "here are the different ways to be a wizard", there's only "this is the way to be a wizard, choose a different class if you don't want it."

The exact reason why I love Essentials isn't because the subclasses are simpler, but it's because it expands what is already in the game.  No longer are you tied to just one Fighter class, but you have a Fighter class-as-archetype, with subclasses having various packages.  No longer are you tied to just one Wizard class, but you have a Wizard class-as-archetype, with subclasses showing how you can play different types of Wizards [they may have different subclass names -- Witch, Bladesinger, Sha'ir -- but they're still Wizards nevertheless].

If martial maneuvers are a means to make a simple warrior complicated, then stat up a simple spellcaster and give Vancian spellcasting as a means to make the simple spellcaster complicated.  It's only fair. 



But it's still a label problem. You guys seem to be upset because the non-vancian casters will be labelled mage or sorcerer instead of wizard. What's the word in English again? Tantrum?



I went through 8 years of the sorcerer which was Wotc's way of telling us "sure you can play a non-Vancian wizard as long as you don't mind sucking".  Never again.  Names and mechanics do matter.

-Polaris
Oh, it is because DnD is some kind of retro roleplaying game from the 70's where you are locked into specific classes and races with their own mechanics.



Except for a LOT of us, DND has evolved (I think for the better) since the 1970s.  DND (or at least some forms of it) evolved too.  It would be nice for DDN to take this into account like we were told it would.

-Polaris



Even 4e was a class based system with each class (and race) having their own mechanics.

So really not seeing where the evolution away from DnD being a class based system is coming from?



Did I say anything about DnD evolving away from a class based system?  You are putting words into my mouth and I don't appreciate that.  What I am SAYING is the idea that wizards could never wield swords, Dwarves could never be wizards, Demi-humans had level limits, etc, were things that DnD has been evolving away from.  In short, some of use aren't bound to the traditions of the 1970s and I think that's a good thing, and it IS something that the devs aknowledged in Jan when they promised to make a game for ALL of us.

I feel they are reneging on that promise here.

-Polaris



Sounds like they are making a game for all of us.

Just some of us dont want to play the game.



A lot of people that like 4e beg to differ.  Even Mearls admitted that 4e fans haven't been feeling the love.

-Polaris



It could be worse - they could repeat the mistake of trying to get everyone using the same AEDU power structure.

Now that would be a real deal breaker.

Member of the Axis of Awesome

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Homogenising: Making vanilla in 31 different colours
It could be worse - they could repeat the mistake of trying to get everyone using the same AEDU power structure.

Now that would be a real deal breaker.



In a real way, they are making exactly this mistake.  Vancian magic is not popular with a lot of people that otherwise play DnD.  By forcing Vancian magic to be in the core, they are making the same deal breaking mistake...in contravention to their promise back in Jan to make a DND for all of us I might add.

-Polaris

But the solution is so simple Polaris.

WotC: "The wizard is vancian. Deal with it."

Me: "Ok, the wizard is banned."

If there are non-vancian casters and backgrounds/themes cover the 'bookish' part, is there any reason not to just throw out the wizard and be done with it?
I went through 8 years of the sorcerer which was Wotc's way of telling us "sure you can play a non-Vancian wizard as long as you don't mind sucking".  Never again.  Names and mechanics do matter.

-Polaris



And I went through 4 years of grinding 4e combat slog being shoved down my throat and you dont hear me complaining about it.
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Ok, so I do - carry on then.
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And while we are complaining about names then may I add "Paladin" to the mix.
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And just get off my lawn, pesky kids.

Member of the Axis of Awesome

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Homogenising: Making vanilla in 31 different colours
SO now the fighter can attack and bullrush/trip/disarm at the same time? I certianly hope EXPLOITing these options doesn't make him to POWERfull.

(For those of you who missed my subtlety, yeah this is pretty much what a fighters powers were in 4E, except the ones that were just hitting the monster super hard. Does this make the fighter "just like the wizard"? No, and it didn't back then.
But the solution is so simple Polaris.

WotC: "The wizard is vancian. Deal with it."

Me: "Ok, the wizard is banned."

If there are non-vancian casters and backgrounds/themes cover the 'bookish' part, is there any reason not to just throw out the wizard and be done with it?



The key word is "if".  If there is a non-Vancian substitute then that's fine, but it sure didn't seem that way to me.

-Polaris
SO now the fighter can attack and bullrush/trip/disarm at the same time? I certianly hope EXPLOITing these options doesn't make him to POWERfull.

(For those of you who missed my subtlety, yeah this is pretty much what a fighters powers were in 4E, except the ones that were just hitting the monster super hard. Does this make the fighter "just like the wizard"? No, and it didn't back then.



Yah, but now we don't have to wait till level 11 to try to bull rush an enemy a square and step up because...uhh...because level 11 is when we learn to push, or something.

"Lightning...it flashes bright, then fades away.  It can't protect, it can only destroy."

But the solution is so simple Polaris.

WotC: "The wizard is vancian. Deal with it."

Me: "Ok, the wizard is banned."

If there are non-vancian casters and backgrounds/themes cover the 'bookish' part, is there any reason not to just throw out the wizard and be done with it?



The key word is "if".  If there is a non-Vancian substitute then that's fine, but it sure didn't seem that way to me.

-Polaris


Well, I sure hope there will be. Otherwise that's another nail in the coffin of D&DN for me.
Ro3 Haiku Time!

Modular tactics?
Yes. Each tactical module
Is seperable.

Maneuver actions?
Fighters maneuver and hurt
Others must choose.

Next Non-Vancian?
Wizards will be Vancian
Other casters won't.
On the Vancian Wizard: I don't like it, but can live with it if there are other non-vancian magic classes available.
 
I also didn't like the wizard treatment in 4E (PHB version): I just made a Warlock instead, which gameplay I found more of my liking.   

That said the 4E Wizard didn't disrupt the game either in terms of balance or by imposing the 5MWD to everyone else. So that would be a condition for the Vancian Wizard to be acceptable for me.
 
I do have a concern about having very different systems co-existing in the same game, but I'm ok to suspend judgment till the design for that will be available to assess.  
  
I went through 8 years of the sorcerer which was Wotc's way of telling us "sure you can play a non-Vancian wizard as long as you don't mind sucking".  Never again.  Names and mechanics do matter.


In comparing the 3e sorcerer to the wizard, having a tradeoff between Vancian casting with lots of spells known and spontaneous casting with a limited number of spells known is fine (though I would have liked a few more spells known).  Problem was, they gave the sorcerer some extra disadvantages which really made it feel like a second-tier class.  The only real advantage the sorcerer got was more spell slots.
-Charisma as the casting stat instead of Intelligence.  This meant that the sorcerer got fewer skill points.  Oh, and fewer class skills.
-No bonus feats, while the wizard got Scribe Scroll plus a bonus metamagic/item creation feat every five levels.
-and most importantly, acquisition of higher level spells was delayed by a level, so the sorcerer got 2nd level spells at 4th, 3rd level spells at 6th, and so on.

I played a sorcerer from 1st to 16th level in Living Greyhawk and it was my favorite 3e class by far...because I liked playing a spellcaster but hated Vancian casting, and was willing to put up with a few annoyances on the way.  In the context of Living Greyhawk's rules and assumptions, the wizard's advantages weren't quite as overwhelming.  In most adventures, the party had limited information about upcoming encounters, so Vancian casting was a serious disadvantage.  Also, there was no 5-minute workday; if the party stopped to sleep in the middle of an adventure, they would most likely fail the mission.  So the extra spell slots came in handy.  In addition, magic item creation cost time units, so the more crafting you did, the less adventuring you could do in a year.  Overall, while the sorcerer was weaker than the wizard, cleric, and druid, it was still stronger than any of the non-caster classes, because it had access to the brokenness of the spellcasting system, just not all of it.

With all that being said, I will be quite disappointed if they don't have a non-Vancian wizard-type class.  4e was the first time I had fun playing an honest no-kidding wizard.
That should be reassuring news for people worried about some of the recently mentioned rules. All will be Optional Rules.

I like what Maneuvers are designed to be and what they will fill. 4E Powers.

I am fine with Vancian being Wizard & Cleric only and other Spellcasters such as Warlock and Sorcerer using "alternate spellcasting method". If there are Classes that should use Vancian, it should be the two core ones IMO as a vestige.  People that want AEDU chassis optional on all classes will be in for a big deception IMO. I understood a long time ago that Spellcasting methods such as AEDU Powers, Power Point and Vancian would be class-based, similar to how 4E tackled it. So if you want to play a Wizard that is non-Vancian, you'll have to play a Sorcerer and refluff it being a Wizard i fear. This should make many Vancian haters Pollers happy enought. There will still be people unhappy with it of course but WoTC cannot please everyone. But at least they are trying to give fans what they want in one form or another.


EDITED

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter



3. Vancian casting is in core. WotC say bye to a huge chunk of your player base...



And if it wasn't core, just as many who have been watching would of left anyway.  So in the end net loss/gain of zero...oh well.



Actually no.

If they had two modules one that was vancian, and one that was AEDU and when the DM started the game they had to pick one or the other (as in both equal, neither default). They would get all the players, they aren't doing that, so they will lose a huge chunk of their players me included...


How do you know that there won't be both in the core? Where has it been stated that Vancian will be default? Both or all casting systems can be core, without any being considered default.

The latest RoT even states that they want Vancian for some casters and another system for other casters; it will just be a different class, in order to make balancing it easier.

So you choose to use wizards or you choose to use mages (names chosen at random) in your campaign; or you let each player choose which class/system to use.

I don't see why there is so much belly-aching on this issue; when WotC is trying to meet everyone's preferences, each in its own balanced mechanics.

I agree with you, I'm a 4e fan and, personally, I cannot stand vancian... but, as long as they give me (in the first handbook) a spellcaster class with an alternative magic system (aedu, or spell points based) I will not complain at all... the given name of the class is not an issue for me, I just don't want to be a sleeper!

No more vancian. No "edition war" for me, thank'you.
I am fine with Vancian being Wizard only and other Arcane spellcasters such as Warlock and Sorcerer using "alternate spellcasting method". If there is one Class that should use Vancian, it should be the Wizard IMO as a vestige.  People that want AEDU chassis optional on all classes will be in for a big deception IMO. I understood a long time ago that Spellcasting methods such as AEDU Powers, Point-by and Vancian would be class-based, similar to how 4E tacked it. So if you want to play a Wizard that is non-Vancian, you'll have to play a Sorcerer and refluff it being a Wizard i fear. This will make many Vancian haters Pollers happy enought.



So people that don't like Vancian casting get the shaft?  The game is supposed to be inclusive but only if you like Vancian wizards?  That's seriously uncool in a modular game that's supposed to appeal to everyone.

-Polaris
The developers have said that every class that has appeared in a any initial Players Handbook of an edition will appear in the initial release of Next.  So even if Wizard is Vancian only, that still leaves Warlock and Sorcerer to occupy a non-Vancian slot.  Personally, I don't consider the 3e Sorcerer to be non-Vancian.  It had spell slots.  Each spell slot was a daily resource.  That's Vancian, to me, anyway.

I get the idea that when the developers discuss non-Vancian, they're discussing something closer to 4e's AEDU than 3e's spontaneous casting.
I´m fine with there being some sort of non-Vancian alternative to the Wizard that's not actually called 'Wizard', as long as said class will also be able to approximate the 'flavour' of the Wizard. I like playing the studious guy, the meticulous researcher of the arcane who is able to manipulate arcane forces because he understands how they work. Note that nothing about that description really screams 'Vancian', at least not to me. I don't need to have 'Wizard' printed in large letters on my pointy hat to get the feel of that, but if class mechanics force me to choose a bloodline, or to make a pact with the fey or whatever to do this then that would be upsetting. There is nothing to indicate what they're doing either way in the article as far as I can tell, though. So I'll just leave this as my two cents, hope for the best, fear for the worst and see what they're going to do.
Yah.  I just found it.  That daily/atwill/etc stuff won by 9 percent.  However, on a breakdown, Vancian had more people who ranked it as '1' than any other entry, while At-Will was third (behind points-based).  It was only once they said 'The only kind you could use at all' that At-Will came out on top.  Also of note, fewer people HATED Vancian than At-wills, with a 9% point spread between them for ranks 4 and 5, and 7% on rank 5 (the most hated).

www.wizards.com/DnD/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4...


Doesn't the 1 mean "strongly dislike". According to how the survey was supposed to be filled, provided in the 2/27/2012 Legends & Lore article, they say put in your preferences ranking 1 as "stongly dislike to 5 as "strongly like". Doesn't that mean that daily / encounter / at-will had the highest likes and that Vancian casting had a higher dislike than daily / encounter / at-will?

But it's still a label problem. You guys seem to be upset because the non-vancian casters will be labelled mage or sorcerer instead of wizard.

 
Another way to put it is imagine that a wizard has 5 mechanics / class features, one of which is Vancian Casting. I am very certain that WotC will not make a completely separate second class (called a Mage, for example) that has the same class features as the Wizard except without the Vancian casting feature. Instead, they will make a new class with five new, and likely interesting, features. Any feat or magic item or prestige class that comes out that says "Wizard only" cannot be taken by the Mage class because it is not a Wizard, even if that feat / magic item has nothing to do with Vancian casting.

This situation is completely avoidable if the Vancian casting section of a wizard was swappable for other ways to cast spells (AEDU, or spell points, or whatever).
I think how you cast should be defined by your Class.
Wizard -- Vancian
Sorcerer -- AEDU
Warlock -- Power Points

I think how you learned to do magic can be defined by your Background.
Studious (you studied hard to learn magic; gain additional benefit your spellbook)
Gifted (the magic is in your blood; reduced need for material components/implements)
Pact (you sold a bit of your soul for power; your spells take on a trait associated with your patron)
I'm always amused when the spell slot system is refered to as Vancian.
Having read Dying Earth, which is the only of Mr Vance's series to use fire and forget pre-prepared specific spells, they are hardly similar to D&D's level based, paltry memorization time dweomers. 
The Excellent Prismatic Spray, which was pretty much a hey you die spell, was almost universally known amongst Wizards, and anyone could attempt these spells, there was just a nasty chance of backlash if you borka-borka'd it. 
I have an answer for you, it may even be the truth.


So people that don't like Vancian casting get the shaft?  The game is supposed to be inclusive but only if you like Vancian wizards?  That's seriously uncool in a modular game that's supposed to appeal to everyone.

-Polaris


Not they don't get the shaft, because there will be non-Vancian power source out there for those who dont want Vancian.

But if you want AEDU chassis optional on all classes, then you may be disappointed as it will fail to meet your expectations. But you expect something the Devs never said too i must remind you.

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

I think how you cast should be defined by your Class.
Wizard -- Vancian
Sorcerer -- AEDU
Warlock -- Power Points

I think how you learned to do magic can be defined by your Background.
Studious (you studied hard to learn magic; gain additional benefit your spellbook)
Gifted (the magic is in your blood; reduced need for material components/implements)
Pact (you sold a bit of your soul for power; your spells take on a trait associated with your patron)

Hmm, I have the opposite perspective:
Wizard -- Studious (spellbook)
Sorcerer -- Gifted (bloodline)
Warlock -- Pact (patron)

How your spellcasting is achieved mechanically should be player/DM choice. If a DM says no vancian, would that mean I can't have a studious caster? Can't a gifted caster be mechanized to use vancian? A studious caster couldn't use power points to limit spell usage? An arcane caster is not allowed to cast spontaneously like a 5e cleric? A caster should not be only defined by their spells, and I want caster classes to be more than just the way they cast spells.

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So people that don't like Vancian casting get the shaft?  The game is supposed to be inclusive but only if you like Vancian wizards?  That's seriously uncool in a modular game that's supposed to appeal to everyone.

-Polaris


Not they don't get the shaft, because there will be non-Vancian power source out there for those who dont want Vancian.

But if you want AEDU chassis optional on all classes, then you may be disappointed as it will fail to meet your expectations. But you expect something the Devs never said too i must remind you.




Like the 3e sorcererer was a non-Vancian wizard or the Favored Soul was a 'non-Vancian' cleric.  That is NOT what the developers promised either.  They promised a game for all of us, and that's not it.  As I said earlier, I don't mind if there is a non-Vancian alternative not called the wizard but able to act as a wizard.    So far, I'm not seeing it.

-Polaris
Not they don't get the shaft, because there will be non-Vancian power source out there for those who dont want Vancian.


But will such classes carry all of the non-Vancian casting class features of a wizard? Will such classes have access to non-Vancian related, Wizard-only feats, themes, and magic items? Or will they have their own class features and unique mechanics? I don't require the same name (and neither does Polaris), but a Wizard is going to be more than just the Vancian casting and I don't think it is likely that those features will be ported as a group into another class that has a different casting style.
Reading comprehension assist:



They said that the Wizard will be a Vancian caster.  Full stop.  There will not be an alternate casting method for the Wizard.  The Wizard will be a Vancian caster.

They said that another class would be required for a non-Vancian option.  They did not say that the solution was to refluff a Bard or Sorcerer or something with a completely different ethos and stat priority.  It's possible, though they didn't state one way or the other, that there may be a Wizard-like class that is not a Vancian caster.  And by Wizard-like, I mean the fluff and traits associated with the Wizard, but with a different name.  I for one would consider that the ideal, if they're going with this route, and will be providing feedback accordingly and I encourage others to do the same.  To unequivocally deny that as a possibility is reading in too much to their statement.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I think how you cast should be defined by your Class.
Wizard -- Vancian
Sorcerer -- AEDU
Warlock -- Power Points

I think how you learned to do magic can be defined by your Background.
Studious (you studied hard to learn magic; gain additional benefit your spellbook)
Gifted (the magic is in your blood; reduced need for material components/implements)
Pact (you sold a bit of your soul for power; your spells take on a trait associated with your patron)


Oooh.... now we're talking.  This is perfect.  Exactly the point behind background-class interactions, and I'm now revising what I hope for in terms of the caster design to be basically this.  Maybe not the specifics mentioned, but the general concept of the "wizard's historically fluffy bits" being shifted to background.

Oh, and if your objection to such a system is "But they only like Wizards...they get all the shiny toys and are just better!"  then I'd argue that a balanced, compelling class design basically refutes your entire premise.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I am not sure everyone is upset that the vancian spellcasting class will be called Wizard and the non-vancian spellcasting class will be called something else or is just that every other post is from Polaris.

I think the compromise can be found in 2nd edition (and possibly earlier, I don't have those books).  Instead of 4e's power source baskets, go back to "character classes divided into four groups according to general occupations:"

Warrior
Fighter
Ranger
Paladin

Wizard
Mage (vancian caster)
Sorcerer
Warlock

Priest
Cleric
Druid
Other

Rogue
Thief
Bard

If the insult is not getting to call your character a wizard, then just call all the of them a wizard.
That is NOT what the developers promised either.  They promised a game for all of us, and that's not it.


  
What they promised exactly Polaris ?  They never promised that every classes would be Vancian and non-Vancian.  Wizards said they wanted to make a game for all playstyle. Offering classes both Vancian and non-Vancial fill this promise IMO. Its not as good as having every classes getting both options, but its still a good compromise to satisfy both camps.
  


  

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

I saw that quote, but I missed the one where the developers are saying, "Go play some other game"



Isn't that what it amounts to.  They are saying, "We will only make Vancian wizards regardless of what many of our players will want."   This is tantamount to saying "go play some other game" since the Devs know it's a deal breaker for a lot of us.  Their own polls showed a deep schism on this issue.

-Polaris



Mearls himself said that "if you like another edition better, then just stick with that edition." or something to that effect. Vancian casting in core tells me 4E is better for me, so guess what 4E would be better to me...
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Yeah, if I can't have my arcane caster be both a studious learner of magic (intelligence based with all of the Wizard's class related abilities) and non-Vancian, that's a dealbreaker. I don't want to have to redesign a Charisma based class from the ground up just to fit a wizards fluff onto a non-Vancian chassis. A sorcerer, whose fluff and non-spellcasting class abilities that follow that fluff, will mostly likely not be easily converted into a wizard.
I think a new non-vancian arcane spellcaster class might be in order.  Sorcerer is it's own thing.  It's not gonna be AEDU, so what should it be? 
I saw that quote, but I missed the one where the developers are saying, "Go play some other game"



Isn't that what it amounts to.  They are saying, "We will only make Vancian wizards regardless of what many of our players will want."   This is tantamount to saying "go play some other game" since the Devs know it's a deal breaker for a lot of us.  Their own polls showed a deep schism on this issue.

-Polaris



No, what they said is that you can play a caster that does not use Vancian magic - they are even excited about that possibility - but it will be called a different class name then "Wizard".

It may be called "Sorcerer" or "Artificer" or "Necromancer" or something else but it will be there.



Each of those classes already have their own mechanics, and their own flavor, so if they make the artificer into the EDU wizard, then what happens to the fans of the artificer?. It just doesn't work...
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
I'm still hoping for the arcane equivalent to the cleric (i.e.: PF's Magus). It hasn't ever been in any PHB from WotC, so I'm not getting my hopes up it will show up in core, but I would be very happy if it does.

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I would be totally thrilled with an awesome new class, I'm gonna go with Magister for the name. It would be Intelligence based, have wizardly type class abilities and fluff (ie. no deals with devils or super parentage needed, just hard work and study), but use Encounters and At-wills only (possibly with access to rituals, maybe through theme). THRILLED with the idea of it.
I think a new non-vancian arcane spellcaster class might be in order.  Sorcerer is it's own thing.  It's not gonna be AEDU, so what should it be? 

Assuming WotC finalizes each class as having a fixed casting style, Sorcerers and Psions both draw their power from innate sources. IMO, spell points makes a fair amount of sense for either. I could also see an argument for using encounter-based powers (no dailies) that recharge after a short rest.

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1. This isn't just a good thing, it's a great thing. And as far as the fear that this will create too many variations in the gameplay and require a ten minute interview with a DM just to find a game that fits your playing style, isn't it better that all the variations are at least official, uniform, and available to any player willing to read the books in which they are listed rather than all the house-rules specific to a single DM, that create thousands of variations as of the gameplay rules as it currently stands? (Yes, house-rules will still exist, but if the majority, or even a smaller number, of them can be captured by just modules / specific rule selection, I consider that a good thing.)

2. As long as manuevers aren't level dependent, that's fine. While the 20th level fighter should stand a better chance of bull-rushing an orc off a cliff than a 1st level fighter (otherwise, what's the point in levels if not to improve your abilities and actions?) they should both be able to attempt it. I like the approach that anyone can attempt to push the orc off the cliff but the person with the manuever to do so, goes a step beyond - whether that be an additional attack, damage, better likelihood of succeeding, whatever.

3. I liked my life so much better before I started reading these forums and was exposed to the term "Vancian Magic". I've never read The Dying Earth books, and I've played D&D since ~ 1997 and since then played editions from Basic up through 4th, and was blissfully unaware of that term. I have no issues with the way wizards cast spells. The only important thing to me is that the class mechanics result in something that is fun to play - and I've never not had fun playing a "Vancian Magic" spellcaster. When I hear people argue against "Vancian Magic" because it "doesn't make sense that you forget your spells after you cast them" I just cringe. Aside from the fact that it's magic and has no real world basis for how it should work, does it really matter if you "forget" or simply run out of power to be able to cast it again without rest (whether that be short or long) -- the result is the same - you can't cast that spell anymore. What the argument actually is: not wanting wizards to run out of combat options... but why does spellcasting have to be the only option? (And if you think it should be, that's what the low-level "at will" spells are for.)
What's the matter, you dissentious rogues, That rubbing the poor itch of your opinion Make yourselves scabs?
I think how you cast should be defined by your Class.
Wizard -- Vancian
Sorcerer -- AEDU
Warlock -- Power Points

I think how you learned to do magic can be defined by your Background.
Studious (you studied hard to learn magic; gain additional benefit your spellbook)
Gifted (the magic is in your blood; reduced need for material components/implements)
Pact (you sold a bit of your soul for power; your spells take on a trait associated with your patron)



+1.  

I think though it should be something like rogue schemes.  I don't want to punish the wizard by making him use his background for his casting style.   Instead institute a magic scheme as the flavor with minor mechanics (like using int or charisma).

I also believe that any reasonable DM is going to allow you to call your magic user anything you want.   I'd be ok with magic user type A, magic user type B, and magic user type C... and then the campaign provides the real name but I know that wouldn't fly.  And probably is bad for business.   But I personally could live with it.