How do you make D&D better than WoW?

How do you make a table top roleplaying game better than a MMO RPG?  How do you get new people playing?  How do you appeal to a new generation?

I don't think you look to video games, though I have played with people who got into D&D because of video games.  I think you should look to the MtG popularity.  Look at the popularity of texas hold'em had.  Or even fantasy football. 

I don't play Magic anymore, and I don't play poker anymore.  I don't even play much video games anymore.  I still play fantasy football and D&D, probably because both have a history to them.  So D&D has a built in staying power. 

But how do you get people playing in the first place?  Minis as toys... did you know there was a game you could play with those kids?  Brand support... Vin Diesel is Drizz't!  Buzz that goes along with new edition releases... every other summer?  Or is there something that D&D Next really needs to do or have to give it that popularity surge.

They are completly diferent things...is like saying how do you make Assassin's Creed 3 better than Vodka...
Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 


They are completly diferent things...is like saying how do you make Assassin's Creed 3 better than Vodka...



I'd rather drink Vodka than play Assassin's Creed...but I think what the OP is asking is what is the best way of pulling in new players. This is NOT an edition war but I got into D&D through being invited to play by friends (so Encounters in game stores is good) and then I became a life-long player because I could afford my own Red Box with everything in it that I needed to play.  I think WOTC need to ask themselves 'what is the minimum financial investment that we expect people to put out up front' and if that amount is more than a weeks allowance or more than an evening at the cinema or a night down the pub, they will have to overcome a high resistance factor as there are lots of calls on people's spare money.


Personally, if the complete core system is more than £25, I'll have to think twice.  Not £25 each for players guide, DMs guide and MM. £25 tops. 


Perhaps I am being tight but money is short for nearly everyone.  If they don't recognise that that will be a concern for NEW players, they are heading for a meltdown.  Just my two cents! I can afford that much. Lol.


I am a huge Hero System fan but I don't play 6th Ed because I bought the 2 combat and char gen books (£30+) each and then found that didn't give me everything I needed to play super heroes.  So the books have gone on ebay.  And I can't even sell them on there even at a loss.  No wonder the Hero System is dying on it's feet.  It had to go to Kickstarter to publish it's last two books.  Any one want to buy two used 6th ed books? Lol.

Basically I think DnD is in a position to either make a cleaning on the bring in young people front or close it's doors and slowly die off.

Before we move on I ask you to accept a few small statements:

Video Games are very good with rules,they have to be they don't really have DM's to fall back on so they got to make the rules good RAW style.

Video Games are Tabletop's and especially DnD's children look at the earliest games you'll just see guys coding their live sessions as games,
we're not so different we're actually pretty damn the same, elvish rangers dwarf axe users etc.

Video Games develop way more quickly then DnD in terms of rules I mean, there's huge competition you've got to get every edge you can VG
companies have done more rules research then Wotc can ever hope to achieve and the results are right there for the taking.

Ok, so ways to win the customers:

Steal the cool rules of VG, while simultaneously talking about VG's inherent limits I remember back in Morowind how much I hated that I couldn't kill
 the plot NPC's or negociate a higher  reward but this is all possible in a DnD game.

Adopt VG rules as I've said adopt the winners be cutting edge, the DM should be the world builder but your PC's actions need to be properly codified and fun
so PC's can feel safe in using them.

Put out more DnD references in media we're already seeing a lot of them these days, but they're from the writer's DnD not the kid's future DnD you've got to show
in the media a DnD which they can look at and say "Yes a better version of WoW" you don't want them to say "Hmm having a DM is cool but I'm going for it if the only thing my fighter will do is auto attack!"

Most importantly get the player base to be less squeamish about new players yes I know they're probably the punk who keeps trying to get into your daughter's pants
but take one for the team and don't throw him out when he calls Darth Vader Anakin.
They are completly diferent things...is like saying how do you make Assassin's Creed 3 better than Vodka...



Depends, what kind of vodka are we talking about?

Now, it's kinda apples and oranges... or rather the progenitor and the stuff inspired by it.  Without D&D, MMOs (especially the Warcraft line) probably wouldn't exist.  Game wise, table top games automatically have the strength of not being run by a computer.  Unless computers become sentient and take over the world (or "upgrade" us to Human point Two), they'll always have the weakness of being bound to scripts.

An undead spectre occasionally returning to remind the fandom of its grim existence.

 

 

Some good pointers for the fellow hobbyist!:

  • KEEP D&D ALIVE, END EDITION WARS!
  • RESPECT PEOPLES' PREFERENCES
  • JUST ENJOY THE GAME!
by taking in the fact that WoW and DnD are not the same.

and bor as enjoyable as they both are, WoW's useage of guns gets on my nerves when WoWers( I've another name for them but its a CoC violation) want guns in other games saying that it will appease all gamers.


its aload of crap though, it wont appease anyone, the more yoiu try to appease everyone, the more you piss everyone off...


WoW is enjoyable I suppose to those that can afford it both in cash and time, but its not social despite whan players say.


you don't learn how to speak with people on a video game, when you need to do so in person.



DnD is social, as you must deal with the other players..... except when its also a video game... which is one reason to mean that MMO's suck              
a mask everyone has at least two of, one they wear in public and another they wear in private.....
How do you make a table top roleplaying game better than a MMO RPG?

You use a GM.  Even a lackluster GM is better than the most sophisticated AI.

How do you get new people playing?  How do you appeal to a new generation?

That's the hard question.  I'd say it's simply not possible at this point.  New people will find their way to the hobby, but the hobby has become very niche, and that's not going to change.  The LARP side of the hobby still has some draw, all it has to do is glom onto some recent craze, like sparkly vampires or steampunk or whatever's big at the moment, and it'll apeal to anyone who likes wearing a costume.  The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.


 

 

Oops, looks like this request tried to create an infinite loop. We do not allow such things here. We are a professional website!

You use a GM.  Even a lackluster GM is better than the most sophisticated AI.



Agreed completely.  The advantage D&D has over any video game is that there is a real human being running it.


The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.




This, at least, I can tell you is absolutely false.

If for no other reason, than because I know a significant number of TT RPGers about my age, and I was born in the 80's.
The difference between madness and genius is determined only by degrees of success.
by taking in the fact that WoW and DnD are not the same.

and bor as enjoyable as they both are, WoW's useage of guns gets on my nerves when WoWers( I've another name for them but its a CoC violation) want guns in other games saying that it will appease all gamers.


its aload of crap though, it wont appease anyone, the more yoiu try to appease everyone, the more you piss everyone off...


WoW is enjoyable I suppose to those that can afford it both in cash and time, but its not social despite whan players say.


you don't learn how to speak with people on a video game, when you need to do so in person.



DnD is social, as you must deal with the other players..... except when its also a video game... which is one reason to mean that MMO's suck              



Hold on now.  This isn't me speaking as a former MMO gamer of sorts, but I like using firearms.  But, this comes from an interest in westerns, post-industrial - modernized warfare, and other factors.  This is one of the reasons that Pathfinder appeals to me, as they give me what I'm looking for.  I understand that firearms won't work in a tech era that 's pre-Renaissance Europe based.  If that's the case than say up front, "This is pre-Ren based, firearms don't exist yet."  Personally, I prefer Battle of Waterloo cap for technology, perhaps Colt/wild west frontier era.  It sounds like you're saying that firearms ruin fantasy and that all MMO gamers want firearms in the game because WoW has it.  Maybe I'm misinterpreting this though.

But will agree that tabletop and computer experience are two different kettles of fish.  You're not really interacting with others in the pure social sense over an internet connection.  And that's one the aspects where table top shines, as you are dealing with people right in front of you, not pixelated avatars.

An undead spectre occasionally returning to remind the fandom of its grim existence.

 

 

Some good pointers for the fellow hobbyist!:

  • KEEP D&D ALIVE, END EDITION WARS!
  • RESPECT PEOPLES' PREFERENCES
  • JUST ENJOY THE GAME!
The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.



No.  I think it lies in the hands of those who play in their youth, on into adulthood, and also become businessmen and -women.  One of my old players (a full gen younger than me) now owns a comic store not too incredibly far from where I call home and routinely has OSR, Pathfinder, and 4E games at his shop.  When I first met him he was a kid who had all the books and plenty of space...and knew no one who played.  And no doubt, among -his- players in the years since I last saw him, he's influenced more, and they will influence more.  And among them will be that kid who wants to own his own comic/gaming shop...

Just because it's not noticeable doesn't mean it's dead.

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

by taking in the fact that WoW and DnD are not the same.

and bor as enjoyable as they both are, WoW's useage of guns gets on my nerves when WoWers( I've another name for them but its a CoC violation) want guns in other games saying that it will appease all gamers.


its aload of crap though, it wont appease anyone, the more yoiu try to appease everyone, the more you piss everyone off...


WoW is enjoyable I suppose to those that can afford it both in cash and time, but its not social despite whan players say.


you don't learn how to speak with people on a video game, when you need to do so in person.



DnD is social, as you must deal with the other players..... except when its also a video game... which is one reason to mean that MMO's suck              



Hold on now.  This isn't me speaking as a former MMO gamer of sorts, but I like using firearms.  But, this comes from an interest in westerns, post-industrial - modernized warfare, and other factors.  This is one of the reasons that Pathfinder appeals to me, as they give me what I'm looking for.  I understand that firearms won't work in a tech era that 's pre-Renaissance Europe based.  If that's the case than say up front, "This is pre-Ren based, firearms don't exist yet."  Personally, I prefer Battle of Waterloo cap for technology, perhaps Colt/wild west frontier era.  Your reasoning seems to be that firearms ruin fantasy and that all MMO gamers want firearms in the game because WoW has it.  Maybe I'm misinterpreting this though.

But will agree that tabletop and computer experience are two different kettles of fish.  You're not really interacting with others in the pure social sense over an internet connection.  And that's one the aspects where table top shines, as you are dealing with people right in front of you, not pixelated avatars.



and you like to use them, that is fine and I've no problems with those who do, but back when Bioware was developing nwn and Obsidian was doing nwn2 there were posters who wanted firearms added to teh game. the Lantan firearms however iirc were rare and so what smokepowder and wouldnt be found verymuch out of lantan.



and another game, back when Bethseda was developing Oblivion, there was a poster who saying pleae add guns so that you can apppeal to all t ypes of gamers or some such rubbish.

Beth's current lore for the ES games has no mention of firearms.



so its not the inclusion, it just seems that someone somewhere for some game wants them ingame just becuase either its in the rules, or becuase company QRS has it and to compete company TUV should add them.


They should be rare to me   and if its not in said setting's world, it shouldnt be added for the sake of adding it.


firearms have been in the rules of dnd for quite some time, I dont see them going either, I've no problem with them in the rules, no problem in a module either as electronic or paper.


But that they used WoW as an example just really really rubbs me the wrong way. Warcraft has had firearms in it from the begining when it was a strategy game and when Blizzard turned the world to a MMO, the guns came with it.


potato patato

one man's trash is another man's treasure...                   
a mask everyone has at least two of, one they wear in public and another they wear in private.....
As a former MMO player...the best way to appeal players into a mmo, is to have their friends playing it... Being on a MMO where you don't really know anybody...not fun at all, even when you are on a guild, if you don't have any kind of friendship or relation to the guildmates outside of doing game content (friendship or relation can also born in game), the player start to leave.

That's the only reason pathfinder have stayed relevant...because it recycled 3.5 users, and those 3.5 users pull new players,  as well as cry false testimonies and insults toward 4e, for "exiling them from the D&D brand".  4e's strongpoint was that it had the capacity to pull new players out of nowhere (me and alot of players i play online with, thru skype and virtual tabletop softwares), also helps the fact that 4e comunity in general is alot less elitist than other editions.
  The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.



And that's why we're teaching the 12-15 year olds how to play at the local shop.
When they get their butts stomped in FNM by people who take it {Magic} way too seriously?  They come up stairs & filter into the D&D game.
It's not the smoothest running game.  In fact it's about like trying to herd hyperactive cats.  But it's the most creative D&D game I've seen in a long time.  And the players are excited to be playing.  Best of all?  1) Some of them are begining to come for D&D, not FNM.  2) Some of them have begun playing outside the shop (I think they're using Essentials.  sort of.  It's hard to tell from the descriptions we hear.  But their playing!).
So there is hope.
The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.



No.  I think it lies in the hands of those who play in their youth...


I think you need to make the game accessible.  People don't play wow because it's a great game- its just easy to start playing.

Make DnD easy to pick up and go with- so the DM doesnt have to read a textbook to start his game and can continue on without having to pick up a textbook and re-learn the rules

(I HATE THOSE STUPID BOXES that give you some rules that you have to re-learn how to play after learning)

Make the core simple enough so 12 year olds can play [without assistance] that "feels like dnd" (in all 3 tiers) and you have a good system.  (the playtest didn't feel like dnd in interaction to me, but the exploration was decent and the combat was good)

Let the people who want to add complexity do so in modules. 
Please collect and update the DND Next Community Wiki Page with your ideas and suggestions!
Take a look at my clarified ability scores And also my Houserules relevent to DNDNext
The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.



No.  I think it lies in the hands of those who play in their youth...


I think you need to make the game accessible.  People don't play wow because it's a great game- its just easy to start playing.

Make DnD easy to pick up and go with- so the DM doesnt have to read a textbook to start his game and can continue on without having to pick up a textbook and re-learn the rules

(I HATE THOSE STUPID BOXES that give you some rules that you have to re-learn how to play after learning)

Make the core simple enough so 12 year olds can play [without assistance] that "feels like dnd" (in all 3 tiers) and you have a good system.  (the playtest didn't feel like dnd in interaction to me, but the exploration was decent and the combat was good)

Let the people who want to add complexity do so in modules. 



I totally agree with ya Architect.  Although...I hope you're not referring to Boxed Sets!  If you haven't recently, take a look at Mentzer's red box from 83 again.  I just reread it not 2 days ago.  It is -amazing- how simple they made that thing.  I was 10 years old with a brand new Cabbage Patch Kid when I chanced upon a box with a 'pretty dragon' on the front.  My parents, being just 18 when I was born, were very much products of the 60's and 70's and so lots of unicorns/dragons/etc around the house, so it was natural of me to like it.  My dad bought it for me and I spent the next couple hours at my great grandmothers reading and playing (you start 'playing' about 5 minutes into the book).  By the time that nasty Bargle killed the nice Cleric...I was hooked on both the game and the Cleric class.  Not enough that I had 'played' it a couple years before with some kid in 2nd grade...this time it was -mine- and I didn't care that no other girls I knew played it, I was going to have fun with this game.

The sets can be made to be -exceptionally- easy.  It's all in the approach...and Mentzer's approach is the greatest I've ever seen.  Check it out, if ya haven't.   THAT'S how easy the Core should be to grab.

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

Wrong question. How do you market D&D better than WoW? How do you push it out of a niche market and into the mainstream population like WoW? Those are the things that will ultimately matter.
Owner and Proprietor of the House of Trolls. God of ownership and possession.
Wrong question. How do you market D&D better than WoW? How do you push it out of a niche market and into the mainstream population like WoW? Those are the things that will ultimately matter.


Hire the Religious Right to advertise for us?  They're the ones who got it fixed with a label (you -still- hear that 'Isnt that a satan-worship game?' crap every now and then to this day).

Barring that...we need some big-name folks.  We have Vin Diesel; now let's get a sports icon. 

"Hi, I'm Shaquille O'Neal...and I'm a Warlord!" lol

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

Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 



You take that back! Kung Fu Panda is awesome!  
Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 



You take that back! Kung Fu Panda is awesome!  



Hengeyokai ...oh wait, they don't have panda option...oh well
Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 



You take that back! Kung Fu Panda is awesome!  



Hengeyokai ...oh wait, they don't have panda option...oh well



...that's only because they don't accept my house rules. Tongue Out

Panda uber alles!

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

It should be noted, that a huge adventage of wow over D&D...it's avaible everywhere...even a Latinamerican release of World of Warcraft.  D&D is rarelly seen avaible outside of USA, Canada and UK
As a player of both D&D and WoW, I can say with absolute certainty the way in which D&D is better than WoW (IMO, of course).  With the excperion of periodic expansions to endgame content, the content in WoW rarely changes.  You can make every combination of characters available for a single faction and run them from creation to endgame on the same string of quests.  You likely won't, but the ability to reach endgame without repeating quest chains becomes far less likely as you approach endgame.  I have several high-level characters who stalled out in the 80-85 range because completing the same quests and running the same dungeons over and over again becomes so freaking tedious, so much so that I only played it a handful of times in the past 3 months.

That is why D&D is better than WoW.  The adventures change, you have more options, and you're not stuck running the same dungeons over and over again (even if a DM did recycle dungeons, she can always restock it with different monsters and different puzzles and quests).

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.

Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 



You take that back! Kung Fu Panda is awesome!  



Hengeyokai ...oh wait, they don't have panda option...oh well



Close enough...

 
It should be noted, that a huge adventage of wow over D&D...it's avaible everywhere...even a Latinamerican release of World of Warcraft.  D&D is rarelly seen avaible outside of USA, Canada and UK



One of the problems is the Iraeli military won't let you advance if you've ever played D&D, so marketing it in other countries has its cost...
"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.
It should be noted, that a huge adventage of wow over D&D...it's avaible everywhere...even a Latinamerican release of World of Warcraft.  D&D is rarelly seen avaible outside of USA, Canada and UK



One of the problems is the Iraeli military won't let you advance if you've ever played D&D, so marketing it in other countries has its cost...



I suppose it still better than being hunted for witchcraft and accused of being a devil's workshipper.  I since 5 years ago, my family suspect i practice witchcraft because they saw my D&D dices...doesn't help the fact that they are very religious catholic and i am atheist. Maybe they think i workship "la santa muerte" (The holy death)...thought now that i think about it..."La santa muerte" is very similar to the Raven Queen on 4e...dun dun duuuuun!
well mexrage, seeing as how D&D is the game where greek, roman, norse, central american, northern american, asian & middle eastern monsters all come together to have a tea party, i'm not surprised
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"All right, I've been thinking. When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade. Make life take the lemons back. GET MAD! I DON'T WANT YOUR **** LEMONS! WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THESE?! DEMAND TO SEE LIFE'S MANAGER! Make life RUE the day it thought it could give CAVE JOHNSON LEMONS! DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM?! I'M THE MAN WHO'S GONNA BURN YOUR HOUSE DOWN! WITH THE LEMONS! I'm gonna get my engineers to invent a combustible lemon that's gonna BURN YOUR HOUSE DOWN!" -Cave Johnson, Portal 2
I'd say the real issue is cost.  The great appeal to D&D for me early on was twofold - first that it was a game about dragons, orcs, elves, rolling dice and in general medieval fantasy, a theme I had always enjoyed from the Conan the Barbarian movies, Hercules and King Arthur myths, and of course Lord of the Rings books.  The other was that it was a game that was cheap.  Whereas with something like Magic, you run upwards of $250 just to play a competitive top tier deck that last a short amount of time (not to mention the costs for tourneys), in D&D you could play with just one set of $8 dice and a copy of the books or a boxed set (or especially the 'Rules Cyclopedia' book that had all-in-one) that the parents could get you for a birthday or Christmas that might be $40, with maybe every now and then outlaying $5 for a new module or dungeon magazine to keep it fresh.

To sum up - theme and cost were the draws then, could work as the draws now.

I'd trade it all for a little more! Grognard? Is that French for awesome?

You know...there is something called inflation...those 40 bucks from back then...aren't today 40 bucks.  

The great appeal for D&D to me, is a tool for a storytelling in group, it need to have a set of rules to be used as a mediator between the players and between the DM/GM and the players.
You know...there is something called inflation...those 40 bucks from back then...aren't today 40 bucks.


People don't think that way.  That's why people talk about "the good old days" when "the dollar was worth something," despite the fact that you had to work harder to get that dollar, than you must today.

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.

The dollar amounts I quoted weren't exact expectations of future cost, only an illustration.

The point was that the cost of D&D was cheaper than other games and that it still mostly is.  The OP was looking for what will make a game marketable, that is a large factor for the kids that only have a small weekly allowance with the occasional birthday/christmas gift.  If I can have a fully playable D&D game OR I can buy 20 packs of magic and get donked because I can't get 120, D&D has an edge.

I'd trade it all for a little more! Grognard? Is that French for awesome?

If I can have a fully playable D&D game OR I can buy 20 packs of magic and get donked because I can't get 120, D&D has an edge.


Collectible games really suck when you're on a budget.

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.

Actually, i think the people that have the lowest...."financial freedom" are the average high schooler and collage student.
How do you make a table top roleplaying game better than a MMO RPG?

You use a GM.  Even a lackluster GM is better than the most sophisticated AI.

How do you get new people playing?  How do you appeal to a new generation?

That's the hard question.  I'd say it's simply not possible at this point.  New people will find their way to the hobby, but the hobby has become very niche, and that's not going to change.  The LARP side of the hobby still has some draw, all it has to do is glom onto some recent craze, like sparkly vampires or steampunk or whatever's big at the moment, and it'll apeal to anyone who likes wearing a costume.  The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.




I was born in 89, and my playing group of about 15 or so people are almost all my age or younger. Most of the people I know who play outside my group are between 16 and 30. So I don't think that's very true. Tabletop roleplaying is very much alive, at least where I live (NE Ohio). It is fairly fragmented though, with some people who play 4e, others playing pathfinder, and others who like to play a lot of different less popular systems. Our playing groups don't really mix all that much, for various reasons.
"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
Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 



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D&D Next - Basic and Expert Editions

I firmly believe that there should be two editions of the game; the core rules released as a "Basic" set and a more complicated expanded rules edition released as an "Expert" set. These two editions would provide separate entry points to the game; one for new players or players that want a more classic D&D game and another entry point for experienced gamers that want more options and all the other things they have come to expect from previous editions.

Also, they must release several rules modules covering the main elements of the game (i.e., classes, races, combat, magic, monsters, etc.) upon launch to further expand the game for those that still need more complexity in a particular element of the game.


Here's a mockup of the Basic Set I created.



(CLICK HERE TO VIEW LARGER IMAGE)
  

Basic Set

This boxed set contains a simple, "bare bones" edition of the game; the core rules. It's for those that want a rules-light edition of the game that is extremely modifiable or for new players that get intimidated easily by too many rules and/or options. The Basic Set contains everything needed to play with all the "classic" D&D races (i.e., Human, Dwarf, Elf, and Halfling) and classes (i.e., Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, Wizard) all the way up to maximum level (i.e., 20th Level).

The Basic boxed set contains:

Quick Start Rules
A "choose your own way" adventure intended as an intro to RPGs and basic D&D terms.

Player's Handbook
(Softcover, 125 pages)
Features rules for playing the classic D&D races and classes all the way up to 20th level.

Dungeon Master's Guide

(Softcover, 125 pages)
Includes the basic rules for dungeon masters.

Monster Manual
(Softcover, 100 pages)
Includes all the classic iconic monsters from D&D. 

Introductory Adventure
(Keep on the Borderlands)
An introductory adventure for beginning players and DMs.

Also includes: 

Character Sheets
Reference Sheets
Set of Dice


Expert Set

A set of hardbound rules that contains the core rules plus expanded races and classes, more spells and a large selection of optional rules modules — that is, pretty much everything that experienced players have come to expect. Each expert edition manual may be purchased separately, or in a boxed set. The Expert set includes:

Expert PHB (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes core rules plus 10 playable races, 10 character classes, expanded selection of spells and rules modules for players.)
Expert DMG (Hardcover, 250 pages. $35 Includes core rules plus expanded rules modules for DMs.)
Expert MM (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes an expanded list of monsters and creatures to challenge characters)


Expansions

These expansion rules modules can be used with both the Basic and Expert sets. Each expansion covers one specific aspect of the game, such as character creation, combat, spells, monsters, etc.) 

Hall of Heroes (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes a vast selection of playable character races and classes, new and old all in one book)
Combat and Tactics (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes dozens of new and old optional rules for combat all in one book)
Creature Compendium (Hardcover, 350 pages.$35 Includes hundreds of monsters, new and old all in one book)
The Grimoire (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes hundreds of new and old spells all in one book)





A Million Hit Points of Light: Shedding Light on Damage

A Million Hit Points of Light: Shedding Light on Damage and Hit Points

In my personal campaigns, I use the following system for damage and dying. It's a slight modification of the long-standing principles etsablished by the D&D game, only with a new definition of what 0 or less hit points means. I've been using it for years because it works really well. However, I've made some adjustments to take advantage of the D&D Next rules. I've decided to present the first part in a Q&A format for better clarity. So let's begin...

What are hit points?
The premise is very simple, but often misunderstood; hit points are an abstraction that represent the character's ability to avoid serious damage, not necessarily their ability to take serious damage. This is a very important distinction. They represent a combination of skillful maneuvering, toughness, stamina and luck. Some targets have more hit points because they are physically tougher and are harder to injure...others have more because they are experienced combatants and have learned how to turn near fatal blows into mere scratches by skillful maneuvering...and then others are just plain lucky. Once a character runs out of hit points they become vulnerable to serious life-threatening injuries.

So what exactly does it mean to "hit" with a successful attack roll, then?
It means that through your own skill and ability you may have wounded your target if the target lacks the hit points to avoid the full brunt of the attack. That's an important thing to keep in mind; a successful "hit" does not necessarily mean you physically damaged your target. It just means that your attack was well placed and forced the target to exert themselves in such a way as to leave them vulnerable to further attacks. For example, instead of severing the target's arm, the attack merely grazes them leaving a minor cut.

But the attack did 25 points of damage! Why did it only "graze" the target?
Because the target has more than 25 hit points. Your attack forced them to exert a lot of energy to avoid the attack, but because of their combat skill, toughness, stamina and luck, they managed to avoid being seriously injured. However, because of this attack, they may not have the reserves to avoid your next attack. Perhaps you knocked them off balance or the attack left them so fatigued they lack the stamina to evade another attack. It's the DM's call on how they want to narrate the exact reason the blow didn't kill or wound the target.

Yeah, but what about "touch" attacks that rely on physical contact?
Making physical contact with a target is a lot different than striking them, so these types of attacks are the exception. If a touch attack succeeds, the attacker manages to make contact with their target.

If hit points and weapon damage don't always represent actual damage to the target, then what does it represent?
Think of the damage from an attack as more like a "threat level" rather than actual physical damage that transfers directly to the target's body. That is, the more damage an attack does, the harder it is to avoid serious injury. For example, an attack that causes 14 points of damage is more likely to wound the target than 3 points of damage (depending on how many hit points the target has left). The higher the damage, the greater the chance is that the target will become seriously injured. So, an attack that does 34 points of damage could be thought of as a "threat level of 34." If the target doesn't have the hit points to negate that threat, they become seriously injured.

Ok, but shouldn't armor reduce the amount of damage delivered from an attack?
It does reduce damage; by making it harder for an attack to cause serious injury. A successful hit against an armored target suggests that the attack may have circumvented the target's armor by striking in a vulnerable area.

What about poison and other types of non-combat damage?
Hit point loss from non-physical forms of damage represents the character spitting the poison out just in time before it takes full strength or perhaps the poison just wasn't strong enough to affect them drastically, but still weakens them. Again, it's the DMs call on how to narrate the reasons why the character avoids serious harm from the damage.

If hit points don't don't represent actual damage then how does that make sense with spells like Cure Serious Wounds and other forms of healing like healer kits with bandages?
Hit points do represent some physical damage, just not serious physical damage. Healing magic and other forms of healing still affect these minor wounds just as well as more serious wounds. For example, bandaging up minor cuts and abrasions helps the character rejuvenate and relieve the pain and/or fatigue of hit point loss. The key thing to remember is that it's an abstraction that allows the DM freedom to interpret and narrate it as they see fit.

What if my attack reduces the target to 0 or less hit points?
If a player is reduced to 0 or less hit points they are wounded. If a monster or NPC is reduce to 0 or less hit points they are killed.

Why are monsters killed immediately and not players?
Because unless the monsters are crucial to the story, it makes combat resolution much faster. It is assumed that players immediately execute a coup de grace on wounded monsters as a finishing move.

What if a character is wounded by poison or other types of non-physical damage?
If a character becomes wounded from non-combat damage they still receive the effects of being wounded, regardless if they show any physical signs of injury (i.e., internal injuries are still considered injuries).

Ok. I get it...but what happens once a character is wounded?
See below.
 

Damage and Dying

Once a character is reduced to 0 or less hit points, they start taking real damage. In other words, their reserves have run out and they can no longer avoid taking serious damage.

  1. Characters are fully operational as long as they have 1 hit point or more. They may have minor cuts, bruises, and superficial wounds, but they are are not impaired significantly. 
  2. Once they reach 0 or less hit points, they become Wounded (see below).That is, they have sustained a wound that impairs their ability to perform actions.
  3. If they reach a negative amount of hit points equal or greater than their Constitution score, they are Incapacitated. This means they are in critical condition and could possibly die.
  4. Characters will die if their hit points reach a negative amount greater than their Constitution score, plus their current level.

Unharmed: 1 hp or more
Wounded: 0 hp or less
Incapacitated: -(Constitution) to -(Constitution+Level)
Dead: Less than -(Constitution +Level)

Wounded
When the character reaches 0 or less hit points they become wounded. Wounded characters receive disadvantage on all attacks and saving throws until they heal back up to 1 hit point or more. This allows for a transitory stage between healthy and dying, without having to mess around with impairment rules while the character still has hit points left.

Incapacitated
Characters begin dying when they reach a negative amount of hit points equal to their Constitution score. At which point, they must make a DC 10 Constitution saving throw on each of their following turns (the disadvantage from being wounded does not apply for these saving throws).

If successful, the character remains dying, but their condition does not worsen.

If the saving throw fails, another DC 10 Constitution saving throw must be made. If that one fails, the character succumbs to their wounds and dies. If successful, the character stabilizes and is no longer dying.

Finally, if a dying character receives first aid or healing at any point, they immediately stabilize.

Dead
Characters will die if they reach a negative amount of hit points equal to their Constitution, plus their current level. Thus, if an 8th level character with a Constitution score of 12 is down to 4 hit points then takes 24 points of damage (reducing their hit points to -20) the attack kills them outright.

They are completly diferent things...is like saying how do you make Assassin's Creed 3 better than Vodka...



Make it plain vodka and cherry flavored creed.. I mean never mind. 
  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."

 

Actually, i think the people that have the lowest...."financial freedom" are the average high schooler and collage student.



Temporal freedom.. is the thing though.
  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."

 

Just don't make Pandas a player race of caricature orientals. 



You take that back! Kung Fu Panda is awesome!  



Hengeyokai ...oh wait, they don't have panda option...oh well



Close enough...

 


WHAT?! I want this in my game. Although the face is rather gender-less imo. Thats actually something I DO like about wow's art style.  Genders are apparent even on non-standard races. (and not just absence/presence of boobs)
Please collect and update the DND Next Community Wiki Page with your ideas and suggestions!
Take a look at my clarified ability scores And also my Houserules relevent to DNDNext
As a young gamer (Age 20, only got into it the last few years), here are my ideas:

Make It Well Known Where To Find Games And Products-
I've seen a lot of people who want to play the game but don't know where to find groups, or players using their parents old 1e books that don't know about the later editions. So we need to spread the word out there, because one reason D&D isn't spreading because of how hard it is to find a group. Start putting D&D Encounters not just in place like game or comic stores but in toy stores, libraries, and even schools as an after school activity. Not onlythat, buthave Wizards set up official "game days" kids can sign up for as DMs (which WOTC staff on hand would help them out with) or players and play actual games in a safe environment.

Emphasize Modularity
This is the one thing D&D has over videogames, that if the GM can balance it, he can put it into his game, and if the player rolls well and the GM approves, they can do anything. That's what attracted me to the game, and that's what could attract a lot of players to the game.

Make an Animated Series
A lot of people got into comics via the Batman, Teen Titans, JLA, ect. animtd series, and a lot of people got into comics via film adaptations like Watchmen, The Dark Knight, Iron Man, Ect. Why can't D&D pull the same trick with an animated series? I mean, Hasbro owns their own network, this would be the perfect cross-promotional opportunity! And I would pay for every DVD boxset if Hasbro decided to put some D&D adventures on the small screen.
You know...there is something called inflation...those 40 bucks from back then...aren't today 40 bucks.


People don't think that way.  That's why people talk about "the good old days" when "the dollar was worth something," despite the fact that you had to work harder to get that dollar, than you must today.


Well, being since wages have not increased much since the 1980's, I have to disagree with you.  It was easier to get a job, and in some cases, some professions payed more then than they do now.

Back then, a $8 to $12 an hour job was easy to find and was mostly easy work.  Now a days you are lucky to find even that, or they want a degree.

That, and the fact that $8 an hour was a wage you could actually live on.  Try that now these days.
The TT side is prettymuch a tiny nerd sub-sub-culture and not, at this point, likely to outlive the generation that made D&D a fad in the 80s.


That's at least twice the lifetime of the entire game to date. Longer than the entire history of practically every technology and play style we're discussing here.

I started playing D&D in the 80s, out of the red box. I'm still young, and I have every intention of continuing with the hobby for the next half-century.

Please don't write off the earlier generations of players. It's highly insulting.

Z.
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