The excitement of the good old days of 4e

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I don't believe that every character has to shine in every session. They should have a time to shine. But not the way 4e wants to put it. And I've never had any problems letting people shine or shining myself in 3.5 and Pathfinder.



A good DM, or a fantastic roleplayer, can make any character shine on demand. The problem is that we can't all be good DM's or fantastic roleplayers. For those of us not so blessed, it is nice when the system helps us shine.

A flaw in the desgin of previous editions is that certain classes were designed to shine early in the game, and others were designed to shine at later levels. A Wizard "paid their dues" by being weaker than wet tissue paper until levels 5 or 8. After level 10, the martial types fall off into inconsequentiality. The reason this design is flawed is that "star time" wound up being very unevenly distributed. Everyone sucked from levels 1-3, the martial types just sucked less. This left levels 4 and 5 for the martial types to shine before the casters get equal star time. Even if the campaign falls of at level 13, long before the level cap, the time spent at levels 4-5 is much, much shorter than the time spent in levels 11-13, thanks to the way XP scaled as you leveled. You might spend four weeks going from level 4 to 6, where you can spend four months going from 11-13.

4E replaced levels of suck with class balance across the board. Thankfully, it sounds like one of the design goals is to keep this general idea. They want everyone to be relevant at all levels. Whether they can pull it off and still appease all the lapsed players who are their primary target audience will be the trick.

The classes were different but i just asked my players what they did not like about 4th ed. I never played it only DMed it.
 Basically they did not care about their characters. In 4th ed you basically picked a role or a class.

I'll admit that about the first 10% of developing my first 4E character was based on the class... and then the reason for picking that class got nerfed before I played the character, so I had to do something somewhat different (but by then I had a character concept, in addition to a mechanical concept. And I do have another character where the concept was originally purely mechanical (and required a specific class) and I selected feats and powers through several levels and then built a person to justify the results. That person now has a lot of complexity and I could build the character concept in at least one other class.

But the large majority of my characters have stories first and then I look for the classes, feats, and other options that allowed me to realize that character.

 Each class really had an obvious path to go down

I've never noticed that.
and I know a Cleric is a better healer than a warlord but as long as you had a leader for the most part it did not matter what type of leader that was. Or what type of striker you had.

You are correct, (nearly) all the leader classes can do the leader's job and (nearly) all the striker classes can do the striker's job. And that's beautiful. 

It was also rapidly obvious which powers, feats and items were better than others. You really had to just pick the best ones in your defined role going down a predetermined path of powers.

It is not the edition's fault that your group consists of powergamers.

And in what edition was this NOT true of powergamers?

YOu did get the choice where you wanted to go but for the most part it did not matter what class or role you took as long as you did not neglect DPS.

Actually, I neglect DPS quite often. Like when I'm doing anything involving D&D. Since we don't time  our games in seconds.

I also often neglect DPR. In fact, the character that was built mechanically through several levels and then as a character has the most attention to damage-dealing of any character I've ever built in any edition... I kept damage as low as possible within the class.

DPR is of primary importance only for a striker. For anyone else it's secondary at most.

The original classes in the PHB go the most support so generally they were the best classes to pick as well. As long as you didn't do anything too stupid like focus on defending or healing over damage you were good to go.

You know, there ARE roles other than striker and striker-with-a-side-of-healing. The other roles are effective and useful - and fun. Perhaps the most fun I've had relative to the amount of time I've played the character was with my Bard.

To my players they said they didn't really  care about their characters because they were ultimatly disposable or replaceable.

Definitely less true in 4E than in prior editions. Because you can start at level 1 and, by default, actually expect that your character will probably survive. In 1E it's more like "don't bother naming your character before level 4". 3E isn't quite that bad, but a first-level character is definitely wearing a red shirt.

But further: in 1E you could replace a fighter of any level with another fighter of the same level - and very little else, because in the levels where a fighter had something to do nobody else could do it decently, while in high levels nobody else was quite as useless. At least in 4E if you want to replace a character, you can replace it with a character of another class that does the same job comparably well but in a different fashion.

Sounds like someone needed to take your players' character sheets away and ask them who their characters are. Where they grew up, who they grew up with. What inspires them, what angers them. What they dream about at night.

Because the character sheet is not the character. The character sheet is (mostly) combat stats about the character. Which leaves everything else unaddressed. Why is Zelle (bard) adventuring, why does she avoid Korranberg, who are her parents and why isn't she interested in finding out - and what's with all that hair? Where is Berrian (ranger|fighter) from and why won't he name it, why is he so angry toward his likewise-unnamed father, and what debt causes him to take a tenth of his share of treasure to a church? Why does Paz (wizard) never use spells that immediately damage anyone? These are all critical information about the character as a person, but there is very little room for that sort of thing on the character sheet because they don't affect combat.

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
I compared PHB to PHB. I di not expect 4th ed to cover every 3.5 class on release but the system did cop alot of flack back in the day for not having them. 1/3rd of the 3.5 classes were excluded. Yes its hard to design a 15 page class in 4th ed but if they had come up with somehitng different in the 1st place they could have had them and had space left over. Satr Wars Saga managed a more balanced and fun system than 3.5 and only had around 4 pages per class with good options. I checked my rules cyclopedia from the other day and each class was 2 pages with around 20 pages total for spells. They basically had to design a new power path to support a dual wielding fighter which 3.5 required a few feats to do. All they really had to do with 3.5 was kick the spell casters in the nuts, rip out the CR system, give the non casters some out of comabt class abilities and overhaul the skill system.

 4th ed done that with a sledgehammer instead of a scapel. They had a really good frame work to build on with Star Wars Saga. THey could have gone a bit further with that system or revamped 3.5 but further than pathfinder took it. 5 page character sheets I don't think are exactly ideal. I think thats what the player base was expecting, we got 4th ed and gamers voted with their feet and wallets once Pathfinder rolled around.

hah! it is a fine and elegant design. I think you'd be better to look at the formatting of the actual books, use of fonts and other use of internal space. 4e books waste a lot of space. They could easily have crammed half of PHB2 into PHB1 if they'd wanted to without trying too hard. They CERTAINLY could have included another couple of classes and 2 more races. Honestly, the only classes they might have really profitably included were Druid and Bard. Barbarian would maybe have been nice, but hardly required.

Again, I disagree on your assessment of 4e options. Name a reasonable character concept that doesn't amount to "duplicate these 3e mechanics exactly" and you can do it in 4e and you can usually do it in the PHB1.

You're reaching.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
Most of the advanatges of 4th ed acan also be duplicated in Star Wars Saga and each class there is very simple. Its hard to say what people anted 4 years after the fact but I think 3.5 gamers wanted an evolution of 3.5. 4th ed was a revolution. I wanted spellcassters fixed probably with large nerfhammers, the skill system overhauled, the classes redesigned and various bugs smoothed out.

 Gonna stop arguing over the finer points as most people can probably find various things about either system they like, dislike or whatever and most of it is going to be subjective. Mechanically I thought Star Wars Saga was the best d20 game from 2007-2008 time period as it probably should have been the basis for 4th ed.

 4th ed split the player base like no other edition of D&D and alot of that had to do with its design. If you like the design of 4th ed thats fine as its a purely subjective opinion and pats of 4th ed were brilliant and I am hard pressed to play 3.5 now because of some of those ideas like the DMG, and the way 4th ed handled monsters. If we ever played 4th ed again we would probably freeze it in time and that would be the last update of the 4th ed offline CB. TO me that was probably the highpoint of 4th ed (late 2010?). We actually had DDI for 3 years but canceled it when the online CB came along and Dragon/Dungeon were turned into a series of articles.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

Most of the advanatges of 4th ed acan also be duplicated in Star Wars Saga and each class there is very simple. Its hard to say what people anted 4 years after the fact but I think 3.5 gamers wanted an evolution of 3.5. 4th ed was a revolution. I wanted spellcassters fixed probably with large nerfhammers, the skill system overhauled, the classes redesigned and various bugs smoothed out.

 Gonna stop arguing over the finer points as most people can probably find various things about either system they like, dislike or whatever and most of it is going to be subjective. Mechanically I thought Star Wars Saga was the best d20 game from 2007-2008 time period as it probably should have been the basis for 4th ed.

 4th ed split the player base like no other edition of D&D and alot of that had to do with its design. If you like the design of 4th ed thats fine as its a purely subjective opinion and pats of 4th ed were brilliant and I am hard pressed to play 3.5 now because of some of those ideas like the DMG, and the way 4th ed handled monsters. If we ever played 4th ed again we would probably freeze it in time and that would be the last update of the 4th ed offline CB. TO me that was probably the highpoint of 4th ed (late 2010?). We actually had DDI for 3 years but canceled it when the online CB came along and Dragon/Dungeon were turned into a series of articles.

IMHO the problem is that NO evolution of 3.5 was ever going to deliver the things that 4e delivered. To the extent that 4e is different from 3.5 (and a lot of it really isn't THAT different) the differences seem to have been necessary. 3e style ala-carte MCing for instance IMHO was a huge mistake. It practically guarantees that the game will require a LOT of system mastery, present many trap options, and force the design of classes into a narrower range in order to work at all. While 4e shows that something pretty close to Vancian casting can work the whole basic design of spell casters in pre-4e D&D was simply never going to deliver anything close to a play experience free of total caster domination at higher levels (which happened in AD&D as well).

Whether or not some OTHER design besides the one 4e chose would be as good or better will never be known. What is clear is that continuing to just twiddle the dials on traditional D&D was never going to lead anywhere except to produce an endless stream of essentially similar games that would eventually become irrelevant.

Clearly there are any number of things about 4e itself that could be improved, MANY MANY things about WotC's business execution around 4e, etc. I think the game could be perfectly acceptible to the vast majority of players if it is handled correctly. At this point however it is all pointless to argue about. WotC in its blundering way has killed its main product. While I have little taste for PF at least Paizo seems to be a smarter company. I can always hope that in a few years they'll come out with a good RPG. OTOH WotC can take a hike at this point. I don't even trust them to stand behind their product anymore.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
Yeah, it was really horrible of WotC to take away 3 classes, and then give you only 2 new ones. That was awful of them. Who would ever want to play a Warlord? and the Warlock... A charisma-based spell caster? wait... isn't that what a Sorceror is? (End sarchasm)

Gee, having to pick which power is better is hard, isn't it? Um... no, not really.
Even when my friend and I are playing the same build of the same class, we take different powers. He likes his warlock to become a melee arcane striker. I prefer to stay a ranged striker.

All you want to play is strikers? Try the Devoted Cleric. Before Solar Wrath was nerfed, it was a battle-breaker. And a lot of fun. Serious fun. I could do things with that...  But even nerfed, it was still dangerous. The only downside was that for the first 8 levels or so, I was stuck with one of the melee-powers (human 3rd at-will). Then Divine Power came out and I took Astral Seal.

No, as it happens, I am running a game where all the players are strikers (by design). Rule is that the first character to die has to be replaced by a leader. Next one by a defender. LVL 13, and no one is gone. Another party has 4 strikers and a controller, and they're doing very well. But throw enough minions at them and the game changes.

So you had to wait for a while before you got your pet class. Would you rather they'd rushed it (even more) and produced a lesser product? As it was, the editting and play-testing for some of the classes is suspect.
There's too much wasted space? The font is too big? Yeah, it is truly horrible that they designed the books to be readable at a glance so that you could quickly and easily find where you were, and us oldsters didn't need to put on reading glasses or squint.

As for the WotC StarWars game: I'm guilty of the same knee-jerk hate that people seem to have for 4th edition. I looked at it and knew none of my group would want to play it. Was especially disgusted that Wookies were essentially 1/2 orcs. I did try one online PbP, but the other players dropped out. So I'll stick with my 1st/2nd ed WEG hybrid game.
 I wouldn't be throwing around insults about MC due to the way 4th ed made it lol. Spend a feat, gain a minor power poach a paragon path seemed to be 4th ed MC. Saga had had 3.5 style multiclassing and worked great although it needed a tweak as it rewarded skills to much with a single dip into another class. Saga ripped out the 3.5 spellcaster mechanic and added 4th ed style encounter powers but they were basically optional. You could build a soldier for example who hit things hard or added powers via feats, class abilities or force powers. It was kinda hard to screw up your character in Saga as long as you were good at something and out of combat it was better than 3.5 and 4th.

 Vancian casting itself isn't a major problem. 3rd ed removed alot of the lmits on it from pre 3rd ed and gave Druids and Clerics level 8 and 9 spells. Saga has vancian casting but has a 4th ed influence in powers and fighters get options and they have fixed the Cleric stacking buff spells penalty. I don't think balance will be perfect at lelvel 19 with spelcasters but at levle 10 it looks quite good as the vancian spells are not as nasty as the 3.5 varients in most cases.

 In a way 4th ed turned everyone into vancian casters anyway with dailies. It also more or less let everyone start at level 3, stretched out 10 levels of previous edions through to level 20 or so and scaled the monsters although they messed up the math there a bit.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

 I wouldn't be throwing around insults about MC due to the way 4th ed made it lol. Spend a feat, gain a minor power poach a paragon path seemed to be 4th ed MC. Saga had had 3.5 style multiclassing and worked great although it needed a tweak as it rewarded skills to much with a single dip into another class. Saga ripped out the 3.5 spellcaster mechanic and added 4th ed style encounter powers but they were basically optional. You could build a soldier for example who hit things hard or added powers via feats, class abilities or force powers. It was kinda hard to screw up your character in Saga as long as you were good at something and out of combat it was better than 3.5 and 4th.

 Vancian casting itself isn't a major problem. 3rd ed removed alot of the lmits on it from pre 3rd ed and gave Druids and Clerics level 8 and 9 spells. Saga has vancian casting but has a 4th ed influence in powers and fighters get options and they have fixed the Cleric stacking buff spells penalty. I don't think balance will be perfect at lelvel 19 with spelcasters but at levle 10 it looks quite good as the vancian spells are not as nasty as the 3.5 varients in most cases.

 In a way 4th ed turned everyone into vancian casters anyway with dailies. It also more or less let everyone start at level 3, stretched out 10 levels of previous edions through to level 20 or so and scaled the monsters although they messed up the math there a bit.

4e MCing achieved everything it intended to. You can mix in some of another class. If you go PMC you can mix in a LOT of another class. PERSONALLY I'd vote for lowering the overall feat cost a bit, but since you're defending 3.5 with "so what if some options are more powerful than others, it was never a problem" then you cannot suddenly adopt a double standard and say 4e MCing is bad because it is a bit underpowered (and not always at that).

Vancian casting though IS the problem. The fundamental root of the problem is the very nature of the resource control mechanism that is Vancian casting. Anyone who doesn't see that is IMHO highly suspect in terms of having an eye for game design.  I hear that it isn't the problem and what other judgment calls have you missed? I think you can design things in better or worse ways, but ANY form of strict Vancian casting will hobble the design and eventually come back to bite you one way or another. 4e is about as close as you can get and have things work out reasonably well.

All but a few 4e monsters are fine as long as you give them decent damage output. In that sense I guess some things are 'off'. Frankly I think a lot of the designers were unable to disengage their minds from 3e numbers where 3d6 is a LOT of damage for a routine at-will type attack. Beyond that monsters are subtle. While they are easy to spec out they are actually pretty hard to make really good. Like ALL of 4e I see its monsters as a work in progress. The whole system DOES need to be tweaked, but not much a lot.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
This "Vancian is bad" argument... Where to begin.
Well, Let's make it simple. I disagree. I think it is a great mechanic, and everyone in the group I play with enjoys it immensely. In fact, aside from this thread, only 1 person I know has disliked it.

The system I do not like is the Essentials mechanic of allowing the player to roll the dice, find out whether or not s/he hits, and then add on all the modifiers and extra powers. "I missed? Oh well, it was only a basic attack." "I Hit? well, that was my take-down strike, my eldrich wizzbang, and my dread smite, and _____ and ____ and ___." Granted, the original curse/sneak attack/quarry system did allow you to choose whether or not to appy the damage, but c'mon. Why wouldn't you if you could? PH1 rules only allowed the damage 1/round, unless you took a feat. It was the essentials retcon that turned it into 1/turn. The stacking powers after the result of Essentials seemed to be keyed to less mature players who would get upset if they missed with their daily or encounter power. Just as the PH2 strikers, instead of a d6 (or d8 with the feat), add their static secondary stat bonus because people don't like rolling 1s with their bonus damage.
Theres no real incentive to tweak 4th ed that much though. No money in it for WoTC.

 Vancian may not be your cup of tea but D&D is now 38 years old and it has had Vancian casting for 34 of them. 4th ed killed some sacred cows, 4th ed tanked and its probably a large reason why. Its coming back in Next but no one seems to upset that they have added at wills and the spells are less powerful than 3.5 varients. Fireball is capped at 5d6 damage now. 4th ed was in troule in late 2010 or early 2011 depending on who you want to ask, but probably when they started canceling books and the release schdule was revised to a book every 2 months barely 2 years after 4th eds launch.

 The rapid bloat of 4th ed was pointed out on these forums very early on yet the posters who doing so were "haters" or whatever. Some of the hard core fanboys thought 4th ed would maintain a PHB 1,2,3,4 etc and DMG 1,2,3,4 and a yearly camapign world for around 10 years before 5th came out. 2 years in I think they had aound 80% of 3rd eds bloat in 2 years compared to 8 years for 3rd ed (feats= feats, powers and paragon/epic paths= PRCs and Spells). Every edition bloats, 4th ed was out of control. Hence why I pointed out earlier the bad design of the 4th ed fighter which required pages of powers that a 3.5 fighter required a handful of feats to do. They could have done a 4th ed different than what they did, evolved 3.5 along the lines of Sga or a bit further, added at wills and options for non spellcasters in compact books. A pre 4th ed varient wizard requires a page or two of material (illusionist etc) 4th ed has to once again release pages of powers over a very simple concept. I actually wish more people had played Star Wars Saga as it was 3.5 inspired but had a very simple class structure.

feat
talent
feat
talent

etc
  At least people would know what I'm talking about anyway. You could take a feat and gain a handful of encounter powers if you wanted them. Other feats and talents were 4th ed daily powers and encounter powers. A new option required around 1 pafge for a new talent tree or two. Had wizards gone down that path a hypothetical 4th ed could have had an old school type fighter had someone wnated one and you could have built something very similar to a 4th ed style character if you wanted. And it required less design space. 4th ed style monsters could more or less be copied and pasted from 4th ed as written. 4th ed was not really well designed or at least not elegantly designed by comparision. SWSE was probably the cleanest d20 product WoTC made, mechanically anyway but it had some issues as well- no RPG product is perfect.

 I don't think to many holdouts will be playing 4th ed in 8-10 years time. I did not jump on board the 4th ed bandwagon but I did not abandon it either (DDI for 3 years). Gave up with the silverlight online CB. Had players turn up to play 4th ed, couldn't print out their PCs off the CB ended up playing Star Wars Saga that day. DDI ran out late 2011, bought pathfinder early 2012.

 If you are not really happy about 4th eds demise (yes its technically still alive), that was the 3.5 fanbase back in 2008. 4th ed was very different than 3.5 and in hindsight it was probably a bridge to far. Grognards don't mind change contrary to popular belief (apart from a very small and loyal 1st ed fanbase IDK??) but each previous editon change evolved on what came before (BECM,AD&D, AD&D 2nd ed). 3.0 was a large departure I suppose but alot of the changes were things people had houseruled years ago (no more racial level limts, any race can be any class etc). The big change was d20 mechanics. You are never gonna please everyone in edition changes but you upset the applecart and you don't have as many customers. IDK if a majority of D&D p[layers rejected 4th ed but it is certainly a large chunk, probably more than 25% and over 50% would be believeable. 4th ed wasn't bad as such and was very good at what it was designed to do. No point trying to sell a chocolate gateau when the market wants a boysenberry ripple cheesecake though.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 



The system I do not like is the Essentials mechanic of allowing the player to roll the dice, find out whether or not s/he hits, and then add on all the modifiers and extra powers. "I missed? Oh well, it was only a basic attack." "I Hit? well, that was my take-down strike, my eldrich wizzbang, and my dread smite, and _____ and ____ and ___."



If you allowed this, it is all on you.

Dread Smite, Holy Smite and Backstab are all applied BEFORE the die roll. If this was a problem in your games, it was because you allowed your players to trick you about powers you could not be bothered to read for yourself. You obviously felt that it was abuse, why did you not educate yourself?

Granted, the original curse/sneak attack/quarry system did allow you to choose whether or not to appy the damage, but c'mon. Why wouldn't you if you could? PH1 rules only allowed the damage 1/round, unless you took a feat. It was the essentials retcon that turned it into 1/turn. The stacking powers after the result of Essentials seemed to be keyed to less mature players who would get upset if they missed with their daily or encounter power. Just as the PH2 strikers, instead of a d6 (or d8 with the feat), add their static secondary stat bonus because people don't like rolling 1s with their bonus damage.



Your gripe here isn't really making any sense either. Sorcerer damage was all front loaded, but it is the equivalent of an average bonus die roll, and was harder to maximize. The Avenger didn't have bonus damage at all. Their "bonus damage" is all about hitting more often. Monk Flurry damage is static, but could also be spread around. Babarian base damage was high, but bonus damage required them to use a Daily power.

The Essentials Power Strike was intended to replace Encounter power damage and special effects. In exhange for greater damage potential, it provided reliability. Why is this bad?

This "Vancian is bad" argument... Where to begin.
Well, Let's make it simple. I disagree. I think it is a great mechanic, and everyone in the group I play with enjoys it immensely. In fact, aside from this thread, only 1 person I know has disliked it.

The system I do not like is the Essentials mechanic of allowing the player to roll the dice, find out whether or not s/he hits, and then add on all the modifiers and extra powers. "I missed? Oh well, it was only a basic attack." "I Hit? well, that was my take-down strike, my eldrich wizzbang, and my dread smite, and _____ and ____ and ___." Granted, the original curse/sneak attack/quarry system did allow you to choose whether or not to appy the damage, but c'mon. Why wouldn't you if you could? PH1 rules only allowed the damage 1/round, unless you took a feat. It was the essentials retcon that turned it into 1/turn. The stacking powers after the result of Essentials seemed to be keyed to less mature players who would get upset if they missed with their daily or encounter power. Just as the PH2 strikers, instead of a d6 (or d8 with the feat), add their static secondary stat bonus because people don't like rolling 1s with their bonus damage.

PHB1 fighters and to a lesser extent rogues and rangers have powers with the RELIABLE keyword. This is not substantially different from a triggered damage rider like the Slayer etc use. It is true that AFAIK there aren't reliable non-daily PHB1 powers, but remember, Slayers etc don't HAVE daily powers. It is more of a difference in overall implementation than anything else.

As for 'true' Vancian (IE AD&D-like casting), it IS problematic because all the spells are daily use. The problem is that this requires a large number of spell slots at higher levels, which encourages an overly broad power selection and also overly potent individual powers. It also encourages the designers to build in ways to get around things like interruption and weak defenses so that these one-shot powers can be delivered. Overall it is dubious mechanic that encourages overall bad design. At best it is less flexible than the AEDU style design used by 4e in terms of the range of spell power and the ability to have both a slightly narrower set of overall capabilities plus plenty of spell 'slots'. 4e, because of this, allowed for a slightly narrower focus in your caster and a bit less easily unbalanced caster. It also deals with the issue of casters vastly greater alpha strike capability, which allowed them to dominate virtually every plot significant part of the game, except at the lowest levels.

Now, I don't think there aren't potentially other spell system mechanics that could deliver similar improvements. OTOH how many of them also make good unified mechanics for other classes? Some of them might, but I suspect they will tend to be the less 'Vancian' options.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
Theres no real incentive to tweak 4th ed that much though. No money in it for WoTC.

 Vancian may not be your cup of tea but D&D is now 38 years old and it has had Vancian casting for 34 of them. 4th ed killed some sacred cows, 4th ed tanked and its probably a large reason why. Its coming back in Next but no one seems to upset that they have added at wills and the spells are less powerful than 3.5 varients. Fireball is capped at 5d6 damage now. 4th ed was in troule in late 2010 or early 2011 depending on who you want to ask, but probably when they started canceling books and the release schdule was revised to a book every 2 months barely 2 years after 4th eds launch.

 The rapid bloat of 4th ed was pointed out on these forums very early on yet the posters who doing so were "haters" or whatever. Some of the hard core fanboys thought 4th ed would maintain a PHB 1,2,3,4 etc and DMG 1,2,3,4 and a yearly camapign world for around 10 years before 5th came out. 2 years in I think they had aound 80% of 3rd eds bloat in 2 years compared to 8 years for 3rd ed (feats= feats, powers and paragon/epic paths= PRCs and Spells). Every edition bloats, 4th ed was out of control. Hence why I pointed out earlier the bad design of the 4th ed fighter which required pages of powers that a 3.5 fighter required a handful of feats to do. They could have done a 4th ed different than what they did, evolved 3.5 along the lines of Sga or a bit further, added at wills and options for non spellcasters in compact books. A pre 4th ed varient wizard requires a page or two of material (illusionist etc) 4th ed has to once again release pages of powers over a very simple concept. I actually wish more people had played Star Wars Saga as it was 3.5 inspired but had a very simple class structure.

feat
talent
feat
talent

etc
  At least people would know what I'm talking about anyway. You could take a feat and gain a handful of encounter powers if you wanted them. Other feats and talents were 4th ed daily powers and encounter powers. A new option required around 1 pafge for a new talent tree or two. Had wizards gone down that path a hypothetical 4th ed could have had an old school type fighter had someone wnated one and you could have built something very similar to a 4th ed style character if you wanted. And it required less design space. 4th ed style monsters could more or less be copied and pasted from 4th ed as written. 4th ed was not really well designed or at least not elegantly designed by comparision. SWSE was probably the cleanest d20 product WoTC made, mechanically anyway but it had some issues as well- no RPG product is perfect.

 I don't think to many holdouts will be playing 4th ed in 8-10 years time. I did not jump on board the 4th ed bandwagon but I did not abandon it either (DDI for 3 years). Gave up with the silverlight online CB. Had players turn up to play 4th ed, couldn't print out their PCs off the CB ended up playing Star Wars Saga that day. DDI ran out late 2011, bought pathfinder early 2012.

 If you are not really happy about 4th eds demise (yes its technically still alive), that was the 3.5 fanbase back in 2008. 4th ed was very different than 3.5 and in hindsight it was probably a bridge to far. Grognards don't mind change contrary to popular belief (apart from a very small and loyal 1st ed fanbase IDK??) but each previous editon change evolved on what came before (BECM,AD&D, AD&D 2nd ed). 3.0 was a large departure I suppose but alot of the changes were things people had houseruled years ago (no more racial level limts, any race can be any class etc). The big change was d20 mechanics. You are never gonna please everyone in edition changes but you upset the applecart and you don't have as many customers. IDK if a majority of D&D p[layers rejected 4th ed but it is certainly a large chunk, probably more than 25% and over 50% would be believeable. 4th ed wasn't bad as such and was very good at what it was designed to do. No point trying to sell a chocolate gateau when the market wants a boysenberry ripple cheesecake though.

Meh, warmed over 3.5 design.

The question you should be asking is whether or not there's jack all money in warmed over AD&D for WotC. I can tell you this, I don't know a single person that I play with, and that's a pretty decent sized crowd these days that cares at all about DDN. Of those people I know a total of 3 D&D games going on, and 2 of them are 4e (the other is a heavily houseruled 3.5 game). I'd be worried if I were WotC.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
Beta tests in games are always smalle rthan the final product. THe warmed over D&D you seem to enjoy denigrating defeated 4th ed in terms of support and being a viable RPG system. I wanted somehting resembling 3.5 and got 4th ed instead. Paizo done something right, WoTC done somehting wrong. Eithe way I am very sick of very short D&D ediitons (3.0 3 years, 3.5 5 years, 4th ed 3-5 years depending on PoV).

 Back in the 90's one of the fears about WoTC was that D&D would be like Magic the Gathering. In hindsight maybe they were right. After dropping to much money on 3.0/ 3.5 neither WoTC or Paizo have gotten that much money from me. I'll pay money t play their games, not gonna drop alot on it though due to fears of another edition being released or one or both editons failing. Its not an ego thing its just getting hard here to find players for anything 3.5, 4th ed or PF related.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

I notice that some of us seem to be arguing about agreeing.
Strange.
They all dealt XYZ damage+ some status effect.


Name one ability in any other edition that doesn't do any of the following.

1.Damage
2.Effect
3.Damage+Effect
I wanted somehting resembling 3.5 and got 4th ed instead. Paizo done something right, WoTC done somehting wrong.



I wanted 4.5 (4e without so much tracking!) and instead got 5e.  

Any tabletop RP system that doesn't say WOTC on the box will never get my money.   Further, other than content I can use for 4e, 5e will never get my money.  

I turn 50 in a few weeks and it's a lock that 4e is the only version of D&D I will ever play.
we did get 4.5. It was called "essentials", and was a major step backward. Or maybe sideways. What it really did was make a mess of 4e with retconned rules more than anything else.
Like I said before: Soon it´s Christmas time and WotC will hopefully let Mearls go
I´ll be playing 4e parallel with 13th Age until I hit the ground   I promise ! 
They all dealt XYZ damage+ some status effect.


Name one ability in any other edition that doesn't do any of the following.

1.Damage
2.Effect
3.Damage+Effect



 It was the same thing for every class though. The only thing you had to look forward to was a better damage+ effect ability. There was no interesting ability as such.

 COmpare 3.5 Rnager to the 4th ed ranger. 4th ed ranger is just damage. Of course 3.5 had its bad classes and overpowered classes but it felt more organic bad word maybe) that 4th ed. This was probably due to 3.5 multiclass rules and the way you built your character was a large part of the fun in 3.5.

 4th ed was alot more linear if that makes any sense. It was at least good at doing what it was designed to do. The kicker being what if you did not like the linear progression or tactical combat aspects of D&D. 4th ed got better in that regard as the game expanded via splats and the like but it felt clunky. Star Wars Saga would release a new talent tree of maybe half a page, 3.5 would release a feat chain, 4th ed would release a new character option like the tempest fighter or a new class.

 Didn't help the 4th ed bloat situation.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

we did get 4.5. It was called "essentials", and was a major step backward. Or maybe sideways. What it really did was make a mess of 4e with retconned rules more than anything else.



Incorrect.  Essentials did not invalidate any previous material.  You couldn't have a 3e Ranger and a 3.5e ranger in the same group, however, you could have a PHB Fighter and an Essentials Fighter in the same group with no problems.

Essentials was PURELY an add-on, and in no way an edition change or 'half-edition'.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
4E Ranger (and other classes) have different builds instead of feat-trees. That's all.

Multiclassing works slightly differently.

4E bloated in the wrong direction. Some aspects it would start, then leave unfinished. Others it would keep inflating to the point of insanity.

Salla, we'll have to agree to disagree about Essentials. I have a lot of problems with what Essentials did, the way it was done, and how it made a mess of the existing game.
4E Ranger (and other classes) have different builds instead of feat-trees. That's all.

Multiclassing works slightly differently.

4E bloated in the wrong direction. Some aspects it would start, then leave unfinished. Others it would keep inflating to the point of insanity.

Salla, we'll have to agree to disagree about Essentials. I have a lot of problems with what Essentials did, the way it was done, and how it made a mess of the existing game.



I have a lot of problems with it, too.  But mis-labelling it as a half-edition is disingenuous and dishonest at best.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
Salla, we'll have to agree to disagree about Essentials. I have a lot of problems with what Essentials did, the way it was done, and how it made a mess of the existing game.


Except that doesn't disagree with what Salla said. She just said Essentials didn't invalidate previous material like 3.5 did to 3e.
THat is where I disagree. In my view, the retroactive changes to existing characters DID result in majorly changing the game. In my view, it is a 1/2 edition / mid-edition change of game. Yes, the general rules and framework allow both to work in the same game. But the changes it spawned made a mess of a perfectly functional system. Very messy.
Much better to have other sections of the game expanded/clarified than create a "simplified" version that alters the existing game in ways I'm pretty sure the designers never really considered until the char-oppers got hold of the rules. (worse would be if they did consider the changes, but released it anyway because they didn't care.)
Well, as of today, our D&D group has reached the unanimous agreement that our efforts to playtest DDN are over (there's nothing we want from it) and we're sticking with 4E for the long haul. To that end we're looking at house rules to bring back some of that early excitement.

The biggies right now are undoing some of the Essentials errata (most notably for our current campaign is restoring the original 4E Magic Missile and the Melee Training feats) and some experiments in alternate power expenditure/recovery (we're currently trying a variation on spell points with partial recovery during a short rest... which cannot be taken back to back... i.e. if you rest for 10 minutes or half an hour its still just one short rest).

My guess at this point is that we're going to be playing 4E right into the old folks' homes.
They all dealt XYZ damage+ some status effect.


Name one ability in any other edition that doesn't do any of the following.

1.Damage
2.Effect
3.Damage+Effect



 It was the same thing for every class though. The only thing you had to look forward to was a better damage+ effect ability. There was no interesting ability as such.

 COmpare 3.5 Rnager to the 4th ed ranger. 4th ed ranger is just damage. Of course 3.5 had its bad classes and overpowered classes but it felt more organic bad word maybe) that 4th ed. This was probably due to 3.5 multiclass rules and the way you built your character was a large part of the fun in 3.5.

 4th ed was alot more linear if that makes any sense. It was at least good at doing what it was designed to do. The kicker being what if you did not like the linear progression or tactical combat aspects of D&D. 4th ed got better in that regard as the game expanded via splats and the like but it felt clunky. Star Wars Saga would release a new talent tree of maybe half a page, 3.5 would release a feat chain, 4th ed would release a new character option like the tempest fighter or a new class.

 Didn't help the 4th ed bloat situation.

I have compared the 4e ranger to the 3.5 ranger. I find the 3.5 ranger far more 'canned' and rigid than the 4e version. 3.5 ranger is on rails. At level 1 EVERY 3.5 ranger MUST pick a favored enemy. At level 4 they MUST all pick an animal companion. ALL 3.5 rangers gain terrain benefits in woodlands starting at level 7, and they ALL gain spell casting of a specific type.

Now, 4e rangers have pretty much all the same options. They can pick from the same fighting styles, they have the option of a beast companion, and you could easily gain various sorts of casting. You can gain all the things that the 3.5 ranger does or can get via feats or in many cases by just selecting the right power or building up a skill to a certain degree (which could happen in a variety of ways). Very few of these things are MANDATORY however. 4e classes don't get fixed additional class features, instead they have choices to add elements to the character or do swaps (via things like theme) to select from various choices.

Thus we can easily see that I can make a wider variety of characters using the 4e ranger than the 3.5 ranger. Consider a 10th level PC made with 3.5 rules and a 15th level 4e PC (since there are 50% more levels in 4e). The 3.5 character WILL ALWAYS have woodland skills, an animal companion, spell casting, and certain tracking abilities plus IIRC exactly 3 sworn enemies. He'll also have some number of feat choices (not honestly sure how that is determined in 3.5, the SRD doesn't seem to cover character creation).

The 4e ranger will have 9 feats (probably 10, maybe 11 actually) of which at most 1 is mandatory. He'll have a set of skills, mostly based around the ranger list but with background he could change that some. He will have no specific tracking or terrain advantages, but could easily have those from a mix of skills, powers, and feats. He might be a wilderness guy with an animal companion, or he might be a knight skilled in archery with almost no wilderness skills at all. He could be a sniper, a battlefield archer, a giant killer, etc etc etc.

Of course your 3.5 ranger could be some weird amalgam of different classes, but once we start talking about 3.5 MCing we have to admit we're going to talk about hybrids and etc as well...
That is not dead which may eternal lie
Well, as of today, our D&D group has reached the unanimous agreement that our efforts to playtest DDN are over (there's nothing we want from it) and we're sticking with 4E for the long haul. To that end we're looking at house rules to bring back some of that early excitement.

The biggies right now are undoing some of the Essentials errata (most notably for our current campaign is restoring the original 4E Magic Missile and the Melee Training feats) and some experiments in alternate power expenditure/recovery (we're currently trying a variation on spell points with partial recovery during a short rest... which cannot be taken back to back... i.e. if you rest for 10 minutes or half an hour its still just one short rest).

My guess at this point is that we're going to be playing 4E right into the old folks' homes.

I know I've just started another 4e campaign, and I have one that has been going for a year and is rolling along reasonably well right now.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
They all dealt XYZ damage+ some status effect.


Name one ability in any other edition that doesn't do any of the following.

1.Damage
2.Effect
3.Damage+Effect



 It was the same thing for every class though. The only thing you had to look forward to was a better damage+ effect ability. There was no interesting ability as such.

 COmpare 3.5 Rnager to the 4th ed ranger. 4th ed ranger is just damage. Of course 3.5 had its bad classes and overpowered classes but it felt more organic bad word maybe) that 4th ed. This was probably due to 3.5 multiclass rules and the way you built your character was a large part of the fun in 3.5.

 4th ed was alot more linear if that makes any sense. It was at least good at doing what it was designed to do. The kicker being what if you did not like the linear progression or tactical combat aspects of D&D. 4th ed got better in that regard as the game expanded via splats and the like but it felt clunky. Star Wars Saga would release a new talent tree of maybe half a page, 3.5 would release a feat chain, 4th ed would release a new character option like the tempest fighter or a new class.

 Didn't help the 4th ed bloat situation.

I have compared the 4e ranger to the 3.5 ranger. I find the 3.5 ranger far more 'canned' and rigid than the 4e version. 3.5 ranger is on rails. At level 1 EVERY 3.5 ranger MUST pick a favored enemy. At level 4 they MUST all pick an animal companion. ALL 3.5 rangers gain terrain benefits in woodlands starting at level 7, and they ALL gain spell casting of a specific type.

Now, 4e rangers have pretty much all the same options. They can pick from the same fighting styles, they have the option of a beast companion, and you could easily gain various sorts of casting. You can gain all the things that the 3.5 ranger does or can get via feats or in many cases by just selecting the right power or building up a skill to a certain degree (which could happen in a variety of ways). Very few of these things are MANDATORY however. 4e classes don't get fixed additional class features, instead they have choices to add elements to the character or do swaps (via things like theme) to select from various choices.

Thus we can easily see that I can make a wider variety of characters using the 4e ranger than the 3.5 ranger. Consider a 10th level PC made with 3.5 rules and a 15th level 4e PC (since there are 50% more levels in 4e). The 3.5 character WILL ALWAYS have woodland skills, an animal companion, spell casting, and certain tracking abilities plus IIRC exactly 3 sworn enemies. He'll also have some number of feat choices (not honestly sure how that is determined in 3.5, the SRD doesn't seem to cover character creation).

The 4e ranger will have 9 feats (probably 10, maybe 11 actually) of which at most 1 is mandatory. He'll have a set of skills, mostly based around the ranger list but with background he could change that some. He will have no specific tracking or terrain advantages, but could easily have those from a mix of skills, powers, and feats. He might be a wilderness guy with an animal companion, or he might be a knight skilled in archery with almost no wilderness skills at all. He could be a sniper, a battlefield archer, a giant killer, etc etc etc.

Of course your 3.5 ranger could be some weird amalgam of different classes, but once we start talking about 3.5 MCing we have to admit we're going to talk about hybrids and etc as well...



 THere are plenty of ranger varients in the 3.5 and PF splat books like different powers in various 4th ed books. The ranger in 4th ed is one of the more boring powers because most of its powers are just really increasing amounts of damage and some skills. A 3.5 ranger gets more damge via favoured enemy, extra attacks and bonus feats based on fighitng styles but it also has spells and alot of interesting abilites.

 Thats comparing one of the more interesting (IMHO) classes in 3.5 with one of the least interesting 4th ed ones though. THe 4th ed ranger is one of the better classes in 4th ed like the 3.5 Cleric which while powerful was also boring IMHO. One of my players a couple of months ago had a high stength pathfdiner melee cleric and he had not played one before and was kinda of excited. As a DM I try tobe somewhat interested in my players PCs as they build them etc but I had been seeing clerics like that one since 3.0 back in 2001.

 In the 4th ed PHB I find the Rogue and Wizard to be the most interesting 4th ed classes and the ranger to be the least interesting. In 3.5/PF I find the Bard and Ranger near the top, and the Cleric, Wizard and Barbarian near the bottom.

 I liked the 4th ed DMG but never got the same feeling from the 4th ed classes I got from 3.0. Part of that was due to the AEDU power structure and role and part of that would have been in 2008 4th ed was still d20 which I had been playing since 2000. 3.0 at first was very interesting as it was totally new. 4th ed just had a big pile of powers to read from. It would be like getting a PHB in third ed and just having the wizard, cleric and druid n them and someone hands you the 3.5 spell compendium to read. I know the classes played very differently but reading them was tedious.

 For us that was a large factor in the lack of 4th eds wow factor and we played a mixture of 3.5, 4th and SWSE through 2008/2009. We switched to 4th ed in 2010 once a few more splats came out and then then silverlight came along. I'm getting bored running Pathfinder its main appeal being its world and adventure paths. Running 4th ed is not an option even as a DM I like it. Half of my players don't like it and I spent 3 years trying to get people to play 4th ed. I prefer DMIng 4th ed but I like houseruled 3.XYZ better and its easier to find players for it.

 4th ed was also the 1st version of D&D I never actually got to play. No one else locally will DM it and the only other 4th ed DM I  knew of left town but dumped it before he left and he was one of the 4vengers here back in 2009.

 When you can't find players or a DM it doesn't mattr how good or bad 4th ed is- you won't be playing it.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

There at one time was an attempted revival of the 4vengers. But I agree a lot with Zard, and with Abdul in some cases. Overall I prefer playing PF. I agree with the 4e DMG possibly being the best DMG released, but I can also see how 4e gets boring with such similar class design and linearity that the rules want you to pursue. And DMing 4e is super easy and fun. I think Abdul is right where in 3.5 classes tend to get things at the same levels, but I never really seen that as a problem, sure it seems railroaded but I feel that it isn't.

Come to 4ENCLAVE for a fan based 4th Edition Community.

 



 THere are plenty of ranger varients in the 3.5 and PF splat books like different powers in various 4th ed books. The ranger in 4th ed is one of the more boring powers because most of its powers are just really increasing amounts of damage and some skills. A 3.5 ranger gets more damge via favoured enemy, extra attacks and bonus feats based on fighitng styles but it also has spells and alot of interesting abilites.


I don't think there's anything WRONG with the 3.5 ranger. It is just a bit 'on rails' compared to the 4e one right out of the book. I'm sure there are plenty variations in splatbooks, and prestige classes and whatnot to create other variations. Spells are OK, but honestly I found that an odd choice. It isn't an option you can easily ignore yet it is almost trivial to get spell casting as a 3.5 character by MCing. I never understood why it was included in the base class. Again, I'm sure there are variants that let you do other things besides cast, but still. Overally though I think the 3.x martial classes are all fairly dull compared to casters.


 Thats comparing one of the more interesting (IMHO) classes in 3.5 with one of the least interesting 4th ed ones though. THe 4th ed ranger is one of the better classes in 4th ed like the 3.5 Cleric which while powerful was also boring IMHO. One of my players a couple of months ago had a high stength pathfdiner melee cleric and he had not played one before and was kinda of excited. As a DM I try tobe somewhat interested in my players PCs as they build them etc but I had been seeing clerics like that one since 3.0 back in 2001.


I'll agree, the 4e ranger is one of the most single-task and in some sense boring classes out there. STILL you can make a wide range of variations on the concept in 4e even out of the box with just PHB1 you have several choices.


 In the 4th ed PHB I find the Rogue and Wizard to be the most interesting 4th ed classes and the ranger to be the least interesting. In 3.5/PF I find the Bard and Ranger near the top, and the Cleric, Wizard and Barbarian near the bottom.


I like most of the PHB1/2 classes. The ranger is probably the most straightforward of all, but even it is reasonably interesting and you can vary it a fair amount (so a nice elvish bow ranger and an eladrin spear and spiked buckler ranger and a human spiked chain ranger will all be reasonably distinct for instance). I thought the sorcerer was probably the next flattest class, though the barbarian might qualify as well. In any case they are both pretty interesting. Honestly its hard to think of a 4e class I wouldn't play a few times. The 3.5 cleric is FINE, but too tempting to min/max and stuck in a healing role it hardly matters WHAT options your cleric may have in theory, in practice he's casting CLW with every slot all day. Other 3.5 classes are much like the ranger in many cases, they are a bit stuck on rails OOTB. You have some options but major features of your character are usually hard-coded.


 I liked the 4th ed DMG but never got the same feeling from the 4th ed classes I got from 3.0. Part of that was due to the AEDU power structure and role and part of that would have been in 2008 4th ed was still d20 which I had been playing since 2000. 3.0 at first was very interesting as it was totally new. 4th ed just had a big pile of powers to read from. It would be like getting a PHB in third ed and just having the wizard, cleric and druid n them and someone hands you the 3.5 spell compendium to read. I know the classes played very differently but reading them was tedious.

 For us that was a large factor in the lack of 4th eds wow factor and we played a mixture of 3.5, 4th and SWSE through 2008/2009. We switched to 4th ed in 2010 once a few more splats came out and then then silverlight came along. I'm getting bored running Pathfinder its main appeal being its world and adventure paths. Running 4th ed is not an option even as a DM I like it. Half of my players don't like it and I spent 3 years trying to get people to play 4th ed. I prefer DMIng 4th ed but I like houseruled 3.XYZ better and its easier to find players for it.

 4th ed was also the 1st version of D&D I never actually got to play. No one else locally will DM it and the only other 4th ed DM I  knew of left town but dumped it before he left and he was one of the 4vengers here back in 2009.

 When you can't find players or a DM it doesn't mattr how good or bad 4th ed is- you won't be playing it.




Well, it would be true for any game that finding players is necessary. I can't say how that goes for others. Nobody really even blinks an eye when I say '4e', they just go roll up characters .

Last night was funny as heck. The halfling rogue got right between 2 Blazeworms that came out of a portal and hit them with One Two Punch, that was some funny stuff. I think once a player gets off the idea that "all powers are just the same" and puts a bit of imagination into picking and using them stuff really jumps in 4e. That same player has done lots of amazing power uses, like using Bowl Over for some really funny stuff. I think he really is the type that gets into finding all these little gems though. The rest of the players were just suitably appalled when the Xorn came out of the wall and ate the ranger, lol.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
There at one time was an attempted revival of the 4vengers. But I agree a lot with Zard, and with Abdul in some cases. Overall I prefer playing PF. I agree with the 4e DMG possibly being the best DMG released, but I can also see how 4e gets boring with such similar class design and linearity that the rules want you to pursue. And DMing 4e is super easy and fun. I think Abdul is right where in 3.5 classes tend to get things at the same levels, but I never really seen that as a problem, sure it seems railroaded but I feel that it isn't.

Yeah, it is an interesting thing. I think the way 4e was written and organized has a lot more to do with it than the way the rules work, TBH. Of course there's no way to prove that, but I think WotC is doing a stupid thing by not looking at that angle and just tossing a whole system. I know it means I'm done with them, and a lot of other people are too. They're going to regret that mistake I think.
That is not dead which may eternal lie
I actually found beastmaster ranger to be more fun to play than Archer ot Two Weapons Ranger...but nobody play those (thought the only great beast companion is from certain paragon path...so you are stuck with a terrible pet during the first 10 levels...)
I actually found beastmaster ranger to be more fun to play than Archer ot Two Weapons Ranger...but nobody play those (thought the only great beast companion is from certain paragon path...so you are stuck with a terrible pet during the first 10 levels...)


It's only useless statistically. And if that is the only way you think to play the game then I would hate to play with you.

Come to 4ENCLAVE for a fan based 4th Edition Community.

 

I actually found beastmaster ranger to be more fun to play than Archer ot Two Weapons Ranger...but nobody play those (thought the only great beast companion is from certain paragon path...so you are stuck with a terrible pet during the first 10 levels...)


It's only useless statistically. And if that is the only way you think to play the game then I would hate to play with you.



I said nobody play those, not that i would never play a beastmaster ranger...i can stick with wolf until paragon when i can get a gryphon and basically play a Valkyrie (in a Nordic Badass way),  i am the kind of person that say screw light blade and frost cheese, i want to play monk unarmed strike rogue or heavy blade rogue halfling.

Beastmaster ranger is probably the only AEDU ranger i could play without getting myself bored (i have actually done some neat stuff with hunter, but it kinda require me to spend money on special ammo and depending on DM...that is avaible or not).
I actually found beastmaster ranger to be more fun to play than Archer ot Two Weapons Ranger...but nobody play those (thought the only great beast companion is from certain paragon path...so you are stuck with a terrible pet during the first 10 levels...)


It's only useless statistically. And if that is the only way you think to play the game then I would hate to play with you.



Stormwind Fallacy!
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.


I said nobody play those, not that i would never play a beastmaster ranger...i can stick with wolf until paragon when i can get a gryphon and basically play a Valkyrie (in a Nordic Badass way),  i am the kind of person that say screw light blade and frost cheese, i want to play monk unarmed strike rogue or heavy blade rogue halfling.

Beastmaster ranger is probably the only AEDU ranger i could play without getting myself bored (i have actually done some neat stuff with hunter, but it kinda require me to spend money on special ammo and depending on DM...that is avaible or not).


Still the whole thought of one to think of only statistics when picking a pet irritates me greatly. I feel that if a ranger Beastmaster just throws his pet away at paragon level then he shouldn't even be a beastmaster. You should roleplay you pet, and ranger to show a connection between them (bad and good).   


Stormwind Fallacy!


 Not quite Salla. 

Come to 4ENCLAVE for a fan based 4th Edition Community.

 


Still the whole thought of one to think of only statistics when picking a pet irritates me greatly. I feel that if a ranger Beastmaster just throws his pet away at paragon level then he shouldn't even be a beastmaster. You should roleplay you pet, and ranger to show a connection between them (bad and good).   



The thing is...some of those pets end up being weaker than me attacking with my bare fist with the ranger than using them, it's not about min/max or charop thing, it's freaking ridiculous how terrible they are, fey beast tamer theme companions are better than most of them with the exception of the griphon...and that's a theme.  There is a diference between not optimizing...and sabotaging yourself taking trap options with you knowing it's trap options, it would be disrespectful to the other players to do so...in this case, i blame the one that designed the beastmaster options, and wotc R&D not to errata fix it/buff it to atleast make the option being competent, and i don't mean competent agains the other ranger option, but against the other classes in general (and i don't mean damage output).

Outside of the gryphon...you end up better going into another class and taking fey beast tamer, reskin the theme and the beast companion and you still fit the same character concept.
"Well, ol' boy, it's been a fun ride, but you keep getting nearly killed by the monsters we run into, and I don't want that on my conscience.  Go on, live your life, find a mate and settle down with (appropriate young animal name)."

There.  Love for your animal companion RP'd.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.

 COmpare 3.5 Rnager to the 4th ed ranger. 4th ed ranger is just damage. Of course 3.5 had its bad classes and overpowered classes but it felt more organic bad word maybe) that 4th ed. This was probably due to 3.5 multiclass rules and the way you built your character was a large part of the fun in 3.5.

 4th ed was alot more linear if that makes any sense. It was at least good at doing what it was designed to do. The kicker being what if you did not like the linear progression or tactical combat aspects of D&D. 4th ed got better in that regard as the game expanded via splats and the like but it felt clunky. Star Wars Saga would release a new talent tree of maybe half a page, 3.5 would release a feat chain, 4th ed would release a new character option like the tempest fighter or a new class.

 Didn't help the 4th ed bloat situation.



Okay, lets examine the special ranger features

Favored Enemy:  Pretty much just damage, although bloats a few skill rolls
Wild Empathy:  All rangers are great at communicating with animals!
Woodland Stride, Swift Tracker, Camouflage, Hide in Plain Sight - Rolled into the Stealth/Survival skills

So pretty much if you want to play any other type of ranger than a wilderness exploring "in tune with animals" characture you're doomed.  Why is Drizzt a Ranger?  No idea.  He was raised in Drow society, I have no idea how he learned how to track, or be in touch with nature, or hide in the woods - he was born and raised underground!  

4E rolled it all into more abstracted skills.  Did it lose some flavor?  Perhaps.  But it allowed a LOT more self-generated flavor rather than book-generated flavor.  

A 4E ranger can be good at whatever the player wants him to be, rather than being "wilderness guy."  With a favored enemy for whatever reason.
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