What elements of DnD limit its appeal to the non gamer audience?

edit:This thread has been highjacked. Theres a minor flame war based around the WoTC web site, so if you skim through the posts, just skip that material.

I have been away from FRP for a while now, Warhammer 40k and family have kept me busy. DnD is now part of Americana, with references to it on TV and in print, it is very much larger than just a “brand name” it is a whole new type of entertainment. I’m not sure why I came to this web site and downloaded the play test. Something got me thinking about the game again. I have a feeling that a lot of people are thinking about it.


 That being said what elements of the game as you play it make it difficult to include non-gamers? Think of people like your neighbor who invited you to his softball team, or the guys at work always talking about poker or fantasy football, your aunt who lives by herself and doesn’t get out much. 

Elves, Gates, Book-binding and Doom On the Rocks: Breaking rules and lichen maps Is character development killing exploration in our games?

My own list is topped by “geek bias” or the feeling people have that the game is not for them just because…well I don’t think they could even say why.


 There is also the stigma associated with the game caused by some tragic and grossly misrepresented events in the early 1980’s. That however is finally fading. 


Once we figure out how to get beyond those issues the next step is to create a package that is appealing to a wide audience. Current gamers should of course be the primary concern, but what can we do to make DnD interesting and engaging to a larger audience? And how can we implement those devices in a way that also captures the imaginations of current gamers?

Nice thread bluespruce786. I'll add some to your list.

Limits dnd has... Well dnd is a medieval fantasy rpg at its core so we go from there.

People dont like rgs, pen and paper activities, medieval fantasy trope, or dices.

Then this game needs a dm. Its not plug and play.

So lacking dms and dm materials, dnd cannot be played.

Dnd has 3 pretty cumbersome rule books.

People who dont like to read much.

Dnd requires friends/players. Its not something you can do alone in your home.

People with limited social activity.

It takes considerable time.

Very busy schedules for 4-5 people is always a problem.

Im pretty sure others will help with more issues I cant think of atm.







Depends on the edition and the person really.

For some it is counterintuitive, fiddly and overly complex (some things you decide with a d20 roll high, some it's roll low, some things it's a d10 for this class, d6 for that class and d12 for another class etc etc).

For some the community is simply not welcoming- if you doubt that look at the edition wars on this very site.

Those are 2 major contributors in my opinion.  Geek bias is also a contributor as well I agree.
But the biases OF the "geeks" plays a part.
 
How to figure out if your neighbour makes a good D&D player:
1. Invite him to play a boardgame with you.
2. Play a fantasy based board game with him (Dungeon! or Legend of Drizzt).
3. Invite him to join you on a Gameday or convention.

He is still showing up on your doorstep?

4. Host a D&D session for him!

The biggest problem I find with D&D is teaching them. Normally I can get a non gamer to play a session with me, but if they can't get their head around how the game works generally in the first session then they don't come back.


I think the basic set will be the key:


Something eye catching thing that is cheap - Like a tenner (WOTC should consider taking a loss on these units if they have to) - and has everything you need to play. Do it in 20-40 pages, maximum. The closer to 20 the better. Put some awesome environment on the cover; the point is to be able to set yourself in a scene, not look at awesome heroics. Some badass monster like a dragon is good. Dragons. They're in the title. Everyone knows what they look like. Perhaps a dragon. In a dungeon.


Give us 4 classes (some say 2) and let them level to 5, give us a starter adventure (to be included in the 20-40 page count). Make that starter adventure easier to read than the playtest ones. My god I hate how the playtest adventures are written. Make it linear and simple. Give us some mats, give us some dice. The mats could be made of card. Give us minis, not those crappy pogs. They can be crappy minis, but make 'em 3 dimensional figures. Make those figures relevent to the advanture! Make it clear that not all groups will use all the materials in the box. Make it clear that the game is designed to be adapted.


Include a spell list of no more than 10 spells per class. Do not bother us with optional systems like specialties and backgrounds. Do not bother us with class options; pick a configuration for each class that is simple and stick to it.



Brevity is the soul of wit.



Anyway I think another product that is not D&D but like D&D would do wonders. I recruited a players off the back of a HeroQuest game, something like that might make a really sweet introduction to the genre.


The biggest problem I find with D&D is teaching them. Normally I can get a non gamer to play a session with me, but if they can't get their head around how the game works generally in the first session then they don't come back.




I agree with this. There should always be an intro product that is very, very simple. I also find that a lot of folks have a hard time getting past the hurdle that this isn't a board game, it's a play-pretend game. Some people just don't get into that, some are a little too self conscious about that, but others have something inside that is liberated when they figure that out and will become gamers for life.




Anyway I think another product that is not D&D but like D&D would do wonders. I recruited a players off the back of a HeroQuest game, something like that might make a really sweet introduction to the genre.




I also agree with this because it helps to bridge that gap between board game and play-pretend game that many people have trouble with. When my junior high school friends and I first started, it was with HeroQuest. We expanded on it until it couldn't expand enough to fill our insatiable desire for more, and that's when we switched to D&D.

If we are talking about the RPG hobby at large, the main hurdle to get new players over is the roleplaying in itself. Some people like that from the start, other people find it strange and awkward to pretend to be someone else.

If we are talking about D&D in particular, over other tabletop RPGs then it is by far the cheesy and simplistic tone. Most RPGers I know want deep immersion, moral dilemmas and intense character development and they react quite bad to the black and white and stereotypical D&D fantasy. So the biggest hurdle there is to explain that the ruleset can be used to play a deeper kind of game aswell.
Can I also just point out one of the worst, WORST offenders?:

This website.

The Official D&D website is so badly set up, so badly layered, as to be extremely off-putting.  I'm a player with over 30 years experience with this game, and when I was returning to the brand to try 4th edition, I couldn't even find a simple list, ANYWHERE on this site which would declare which products were necessary for play.  Half the links on even the front page of the site are either dead or go behind a pay-wall which means I can't get basic information.  The other half discuss minutae which could only be of interest to those already heavily invested in the system.  Try to poke the little "find a game near you" buttons on the right, and be prepared for a whole new level of nightmare as WotC fails to actually deliver that information in the most confusing possible manner.

This website needs to be burned down to the ground and started from scratch.  The front page should have three buttons, total: Here's the checklist of what you need to play, here's a google map populated with nearby games registered with us, and here's the forums.  Period.

Can I also just point out one of the worst, WORST offenders?:



Don't forget to add, THESE forums.  It is not a friendly environment.

"The turning of the tide always begins with one soldier's decision to head back into the fray"

It's a game.  I think being a game would limit it's appeal to non-gamers. ;)
Can I also just point out one of the worst, WORST offenders?:

This website.

The Official D&D website is so badly set up, so badly layered, as to be extremely off-putting.  I'm a player with over 30 years experience with this game, and when I was returning to the brand to try 4th edition, I couldn't even find a simple list, ANYWHERE on this site which would declare which products were necessary for play.



  1. Go to www.wizards.com/dnd

  2. Click "Games" (right at the top of the website)

  3. On the right, there is a button called "New to D&D?"

  4. This screen has a little intro and a big button that says "What to Buy?", which shows you the Red Box intro set.

Half the links on even the front page of the site are either dead or go behind a pay-wall which means I can't get basic information.


The only link that goes behind a paywall are "Tools".  I can't find any dead links on the front page of the website.  Maybe you're thinking of the old website before it was revamped more than a year ago.

This website needs to be burned down to the ground and started from scratch.  The front page should have three buttons, total: Here's the checklist of what you need to play, here's a google map populated with nearby games registered with us, and here's the forums.  Period.


The "New to D&D" page has exactly that.  Well, they have four buttons.  First "What is D&D".  Second "What to Buy".  Third, "Learn to Play" and Fourth, "Where to Play", which leads you to a Meetup map just like you asked.

Go to www.wizards.com/dnd

  1. Click "Games" (right at the top of the website)

  2. On the right, there is a button called "New to D&D?"

  3. This screen has a little intro and a big button that says "What to Buy?", which shows you the Red Box intro set.



That is not what shows up in Internet Explorer, the most common browsing software in the world.  Right now "New to D&D" is a massive blob overlaying the central graphic.  Clicking it takes you to a page which, contrary to your claim here, has no fewer than 45 (FORTY FIVE!) separate clickable links, objects, tabs, and radio buttons.  Again, contrary to your claim here, a large number of those, including what would seem to the new player to be obviously useful beginner links like "character creation" are behind the DDI paywall.

If a new player is lucky enough to navigate this godawful mess and find the "what to buy" link, they are presented with a drop-down tab, not a new page, which, while it pictures the red box set, also presents links, just as heavily weighted, for what it calls the "essentials" materials, which, it turns out, consist of 8 different books, only some of which are actually "Essential."  And that page which is supposed to be showing you the "Essentials" also shows you all the previously mentioned sidebar links, and the subscriber-only DDI stuff which is behind the paywall.

So, fail.

As for the "find a game" link you mention, I clicked it.   
You know what it doesn't link to?  A map of games in the area.  What it ACTUALLY links to is a description, badly worded, of the 'Encounter's series, and suggests you follow ANOTHER link, to fiind a game.
Click that one and type in "New York City, and what is produced?  A list of stores which are playing Encounters, but not a map of other games in the area, which is what should be there.

So no, spiritied defense attempt, Wrecan, but, unfortunately, entirely made up.
This website is TERRIBLE.

Promitheas listed most of the most important factors IMO.  I'll also mention them and suggest ways to mitigate them.

1)  D&D is a game that takes a long time to play.  In my limited D&D experience (3X and 4e) most games need to be at least 2 hrs., I preffer 5.  This is not an insignificant amount of time, D&DN seems to be trying to address this issue with shorter combats, which in my experience could take a long time in both 4e and 3X.

2)  Gathering everyone together:  since D&D seems to work best with a DM and about 4 players it becomes hard to agree on a meeting time.  It's even harder to get so many people to set down about 5 hours of their time for any given session.  Play by Post can make this less of an issue and I'm sure many people enjoy it.

3)  Extesive jargon:  it took me a long time to learn teams such as Base Attack Bonus, learn the Ability score/ability modifier table, and so on.  The system is not simple and took me quite a long time to learn.  D&DN does seem to be trying to simplify the game.

4)  Availability:  many of the things needed to play D&D can be hard to find outside of a specialized game store.  As far as I know, you just can't walk into major retailers and get D&D dice, battle mats, minis, books and so on.  Many of these things are optional, but availability can be an issue.  D&D could do better if it was more widely available for sale IMO, get the impulse buying.
    


   

              
Can I also just point out one of the worst, WORST offenders?:

This website.

The Official D&D website is so badly set up, so badly layered, as to be extremely off-putting.  I'm a player with over 30 years experience with this game, and when I was returning to the brand to try 4th edition, I couldn't even find a simple list, ANYWHERE on this site which would declare which products were necessary for play.  Half the links on even the front page of the site are either dead or go behind a pay-wall which means I can't get basic information.  The other half discuss minutae which could only be of interest to those already heavily invested in the system.  Try to poke the little "find a game near you" buttons on the right, and be prepared for a whole new level of nightmare as WotC fails to actually deliver that information in the most confusing possible manner.

This website needs to be burned down to the ground and started from scratch.  The front page should have three buttons, total: Here's the checklist of what you need to play, here's a google map populated with nearby games registered with us, and here's the forums.  Period.




For play?  The Player's Handbook (or now the Player's Essentials)

For DMing?  Add The Dungeon Master's Guide and the Monster Manual (or DM Essentials/Monster Vault)

This hasn't actually changed since Gygax released AD&D.


As for the website (www.wizards.com/dnd) it has a button on the front page that says "New to D&D?  Click here"

It then gives you: What is D&D, What to Buy,  Learn to Play, Find a Game

 
I think cheap accessbility is the number 1 problem. They really need a better way for people to try the product for cheap, or probably free, and decide whether to buy in. You could possibly do without the DMG, but you AT LEAST need the PHB and MM for a new group to happen. That's a minimum of 70-80 dollars, a lot of money for just trying something.

In the age of apps, you got to evolve or else you will get left behind :P
My two copper.
These boards!

...just kidding...but not at all...*said like Derek, Brendan's brother in Stepbrothers*

But seriously, I think the real reason is exposure (like so many things in life). 
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Why 
Can I also just point out one of the worst, WORST offenders?:

This website.

The Official D&D website is so badly set up, so badly layered, as to be extremely off-putting.  I'm a player with over 30 years experience with this game, and when I was returning to the brand to try 4th edition, I couldn't even find a simple list, ANYWHERE on this site which would declare which products were necessary for play.  Half the links on even the front page of the site are either dead or go behind a pay-wall which means I can't get basic information.  The other half discuss minutae which could only be of interest to those already heavily invested in the system.  Try to poke the little "find a game near you" buttons on the right, and be prepared for a whole new level of nightmare as WotC fails to actually deliver that information in the most confusing possible manner.

This website needs to be burned down to the ground and started from scratch.  The front page should have three buttons, total: Here's the checklist of what you need to play, here's a google map populated with nearby games registered with us, and here's the forums.  Period.




For play?  The Player's Handbook (or now the Player's Essentials)

For DMing?  Add The Dungeon Master's Guide and the Monster Manual (or DM Essentials/Monster Vault)

This hasn't actually changed since Gygax released AD&D.


As for the website (www.wizards.com/dnd) it has a button on the front page that says "New to D&D?  Click here"

It then gives you: What is D&D, What to Buy,  Learn to Play, Find a Game

 



The DM also needs the PHB for DMing.  He needs to know what the PCs can and can't do and there is other important information that is critical to running a game that is only found in the PHB.

Go to www.wizards.com/dnd

  1. Click "Games" (right at the top of the website)

  2. On the right, there is a button called "New to D&D?"

  3. This screen has a little intro and a big button that says "What to Buy?", which shows you the Red Box intro set.



That is not what shows up in Internet Explorer, the most common browsing software in the world.



I'm on eExplorer right now.  That's exactly what shows up.

See the word Games on top?  That's the button to which I refer.  But also see what's below the blob?  "What to Buy" "Learn to Play" and "Find a Game"  Those are the three buttons you claimed don't exist but should on the first page.  And yet there they are!

Right now "New to D&D" is a massive blob overlaying the central graphic.  Clicking it takes you to a page which, contrary to your claim here, has no fewer than 45 (FORTY FIVE!) separate clickable links, objects, tabs, and radio buttons.


Here's the screen that you go to if you happen to miss the huge buttons that give you exactly what you asked for...

See those bright red buttons.  Again, those are "What to Buy", "Learn to Play" and "Find a Game".

Those alleged 45 buttons?!  Those are found on the periphery of the website.  .

a large number of those, including what would seem to the new player to be obviously useful beginner links like "character creation" are behind the DDI paywall.


There is no link called "character creation".  You may be thinking of the link to the Character Builder, which is described as a "tool" that is for subscribers only.  But the three red buttons?  Not subscriber only.  In fact only the tools are subscriber only.  Every other button goes to precisely what is described.

So, no.  I reject your claim that the website is hard to navigate.  That hasn't been true for a long while.

As for the "find a game" link you mention, I clicked it.   
You know what it doesn't link to?  A map of games in the area.


I don't know why you are incapable of using the internet, but here's what I get (using Explorer, as well as Chrome and Foirefox)...

See the bit I circled in purple?  That says "Dungeons & Dragons Meetup Groups".  You know what you get when you click on that?


That's right.  A map of games.  And all it required was for you actually read what is written there, not angrily click around the web to prove you preconceived conclusions.

That's right.  Everything you asked for is there, and you have left is an argument in which you cound buttons located at the far periphery of the screen, or rely on the hope that peopel won't actually go to the website to see that you're just being petty and wrong.

The website is fine.  What's not fine?  The folks who like to trash things they have no conception of and then can't even show the common decency to admit when they are wrong.



By the way, if you click on the picture, you'll be taken to a larger view. (For some reason the first two pics can only be attached as links.)
Class and level based system

There is a group of people who like freeform character creation and development and their mishmash characters. Most video games are free form nowadays.

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

Class and level based system There is a group of people who like freeform character creation and development and their mishmash characters. Most video games are free form nowadays.


Well D&D is based on classes, has been fron day 1. There are so many other RPGs that allow for freeform characters that switching suddenly would certainly do more hard than good to their playerbase.
My two copper.
I think cheap accessbility is the number 1 problem. They really need a better way for people to try the product for cheap, or probably free, and decide whether to buy in. You could possibly do without the DMG, but you AT LEAST need the PHB and MM for a new group to happen. That's a minimum of 70-80 dollars, a lot of money for just trying something.

In the age of apps, you got to evolve or else you will get left behind :P


Cost is another important factor, hopefully a good beginner's box can be made that is cheap and readily available.
I think cheap accessbility is the number 1 problem. They really need a better way for people to try the product for cheap, or probably free, and decide whether to buy in. You could possibly do without the DMG, but you AT LEAST need the PHB and MM for a new group to happen. That's a minimum of 70-80 dollars, a lot of money for just trying something.

In the age of apps, you got to evolve or else you will get left behind :P


Cost is another important factor, hopefully a good beginner's box can be made that is cheap and readily available.


4e gave out a starting packet for free.  I thought that was a good move.  But really, the inaccessibility is:

  1. Not every one like fantasy

  2. It requires at least four people to get together for more time than it takes to play a board game

  3. Some of the jargon is off-putting

  4. There's a lot of option-points when making a character (race, class, abilities, spells/powers, equipment, maybe background, specialty)


But to me, the biggest problem is becoming a DM.  Being a DM means knowing all the rules, it means creating a world (or devouring a campaign setting), it means creating an adventure (or reading through a published adventure), it means knowing all the PCs, and it means being able to react when things surprise you. 

And there's very little the game can do to ameliorate that and preserve what is great about D&D.   

I never played Heroquest. I have just spent the last hour watching youtube vids of it. what a great game! It certainly sheds some light on E4.

So role-playing itself is a sticking point, funny. The thing that people love once they start is one of the most difficult to accept initially. Maybe if there was a game based on role-playing movie and TV characters, like you draw a card with some script on it and then have to act out the part and the other players guess who you are. Like charades only you have to act like a certain character. Perhaps with bonus points for making up your own script.


 I just remembered what caused me to look up DnD a few weeks ago; My wife was watching Glee and there was a scene with a bunch of kids playing in a classroom after school; They were in costume, it was awesome. I started an after school DnD club in 7th or 8th grade. Got a teacher to let us use her room, got the principle to OK it, got permission slips for everyone, it was a lot of leg work. Then report cards came out. My mom looked at mine and said “No DnD after school for you!”  The club took right off though, 6 or 8 players all year. The Glee episode brought all that back. 


Its funny, I thought we would be talking about how to set up a boxed set for new players to be released concurrently with the core books. I still think that is important, but there are some other things that could help as well.


-A board game like hero quest.


-some kind of game or activity that help people understand the benefits and fun to be had from role-playing and improv. Maybe a study on the health benefits of acting classes. Or a technique to learn foreign language and customs through role-playing.


-I loved choose your own adventure books, and they were probably the first step for me. The D&D brand books by Rose Estes and latter the Lone Wolf series.


-Steve Jackson’s Car Wars pocket boxes were so accessible, easy to carry, and cheap to buy.


-I watched the D&D cartoon because I liked D&D, not the other way around.


I have to go, but its interesting to think about what DnD next might be like and why it might look that way.


 

I think cheap accessbility is the number 1 problem. They really need a better way for people to try the product for cheap, or probably free, and decide whether to buy in. You could possibly do without the DMG, but you AT LEAST need the PHB and MM for a new group to happen. That's a minimum of 70-80 dollars, a lot of money for just trying something.

In the age of apps, you got to evolve or else you will get left behind :P


Cost is another important factor, hopefully a good beginner's box can be made that is cheap and readily available.


4e gave out a starting packet for free.  I thought that was a good move.  But really, the inaccessibility is:

  1. Not every one like fantasy

  2. It requires at least four people to get together for more time than it takes to play a board game

  3. Some of the jargon is off-putting

  4. There's a lot of option-points when making a character (race, class, abilities, spells/powers, equipment, maybe background, specialty)


But to me, the biggest problem is becoming a DM.  Being a DM means knowing all the rules, it means creating a world (or devouring a campaign setting), it means creating an adventure (or reading through a published adventure), it means knowing all the PCs, and it means being able to react when things surprise you. 

And there's very little the game can do to ameliorate that and preserve what is great about D&D.   


You are correct in mentioning that the difficulty of DMing is a near impossible challenge for new D&D players.  A really good organized play option, similar to D&D Encounters could be the way to go.
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Those alleged 45 buttons?!  Those are found on the periphery of the website.  The idea that people would be confused by such a layout is bizarre and now everybody who wouldn't bother actually checking out the website can see that your claim is absurd, petty, and plain wrong.



What you call "the periphery of the website" is, in fact, mathematically, 8/9ths, or approximately  89% of the clickable territory on the page.  By approximate measurement, it takes up some 65% of the footprint of the "New to D&D" page, which means that the majority of the page which is supposedly aimed at newcomers is, in fact, not aimed at them at all.  That's bad design.

But don't take my word for it:

www.d20source.com/2012/03/make-your-dd-w...

Paizo forums had a lovely thread about it, detainling how artistic splash had crowded out functionality on WotC's website, but unfortunately they're down for maintenance right now.
From my perspective as someone who returned to the game after a long absence, most of the big problems are already gone.  The learning curve isn't nearly as steep, you don't have to already have other games to get all the rules, the starter set isn't at all arcane, miniatures pre-painted, play surfaces pre-printed with a grid to make measurement easy, dice are legible, you can rent access to a computer program to roll up characters for you, and, most of all, you can walk into an Encounters or Game Day event with no knowledge of the game and start playing in minutes.  As far as the game itself is concerned, it's done everything it could to be more accessible.  The only downside is the way they split off Essentials instead of making the starter set a lead into the full game.  

The obstacles that remain aren't D&D, but its publisher and fans.  Hasbro isn't even trying to raise awareness of the game, just counting on its name recognition among gamers and word of mouth.  And the fans can be terrible.  "Elitist" is the proper word, I guess.  Though, thankfully, that seems to be the case here and in home-games and rare in the organized play programs.

The only thing that needs to be done to make D&D as friendly to new players as possible is to consolidate it down to a single line that is actually a line, with no branches or curves.  A starter set leading into a player's guide and scenarios leading into DM resources leading into settings.  One big happy game with no worries about one book duplicating or contradicting another.  I'm afraid that D&D:Next is going to go too far down the path of modular customization to deliver anything close to that, and will end up making the game less accessible to new players.  Understandable, since they're trying so hard to cater to the loudest of their hard-core fan base.
- Warlords! Join the 'Officer Country' Group! Join Grognards for 4e, the D&D that changed D&D.


D&D Home Page - What Class Are You? - Build A Character - D&D Compendium

Class and level based system There is a group of people who like freeform character creation and development and their mishmash characters. Most video games are free form nowadays.



It's actually the oposite...

Dragon's Dogma, Mass Effect, Dragon Age, Diablo 3, Guild Wars, Project Eternity (wish kinda came as a surprise, because Obsidian is not shy about going classless), all of those mainstream RPGs are class based.

Now even First Person Shoters are class based...
@ Ed the Warlord,

I'm with you there, the problems with a divergent and contradictory rule set are very real.  I always hated the fact that Basic DnD and AD&D were not 100% compatible. As you say the basic or intro game should be stand alone playable, and lead directly into the more advanced rules.


I think the divergence happened back in 1980 because they just didn’t have the resources to play test every thing to the point where it would mesh. Instead Tom Moldvay was given a free hand to rewrite the rules, which he did with amazing skill and insight into what made the game great. In fact I think if I had to choose one set of DnD rules that would be it.


Fortunately the resources available to create DDN are far more substantial. I remain hopeful that they will be able to release a basic box, along with a core, and supplements that all blend seamlessly together. 

Ah but many of those are for developers who either attempt to snag some D&D feel or have fans in their office.

Many games allow for freeform jack of all trades play.

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

I have to say one of the biggest issues with d&d occurs after the group reaches 5th level. At that point it becomes harder to introduce new players. The game becomes more complex. A lot more things to keep track of and buying magic items and equipment and jumping in without the progression from the previous levels can be hard. So ultimately I think the level structure of d&d helps drive people away.

Campaigns are usually two weeks and it falls apart or it lasts for over a year. Meaning you really have a couple of months to get new players on board before it becomes harder to play.

This is perhaps one of the best part about the encounters program. It always starts fresh again and doesn't go to high to keep new people from joining in.

I don't think an introductory book is really needed. What is needed is games like d&d Encounters to introduce players to the game and restarts often enough to let more new players jump in without becoming to complex.
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Who ME? I post everywhere...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
I like Pathfinder... I mean, sure, the pun is pretty good, but, I like a lot of the things it did for 3e, they really improved elements of the system that needed it, like 0 level spells, and the lack of options for the fighter. If I were to play D&D again before Next, Pathfinder would be my game of choice for sure.
As it happens, I've never played Pathfindet, and have no interest in doing so. I criticize what I see as significant problems in the presentation and design of D&D because I love the brand and want to grow it, exponentially, beyond its current limited fanbase.

Now if you'd like to respond to the critiques I'm bringing up, feel free.
As it happens, I've never played Pathfindet, and have no interest in doing so. I criticize what I see as significant problems in the presentation and design of D&D because I love the brand and want to grow it, exponentially, beyond its current limited fanbase. Now if you'd like to respond to the critiques I'm bringing up, feel free.


You mean criticisms like this?

That is not what shows up in Internet Explorer, the most common browsing software in the world.  Right now "New to D&D" is a massive blob overlaying the central graphic.  Clicking it takes you to a page which, contrary to your claim here, has no fewer than 45 (FORTY FIVE!) separate clickable links, objects, tabs, and radio buttons.  Again, contrary to your claim here, a large number of those, including what would seem to the new player to be obviously useful beginner links like "character creation" are behind the DDI paywall.



I've just fired up Internet Explorer, and navigated to the page.  Now that I am not logged in (since cookies don't move over to IE) and do not have a forum account as far as the website knows, this is what I see:




What is there to respond to here?  You are regurgitating lies told by fanboys from another site that you haven't even bothered to independently verify in any way.  

I mean what's the proper response you're looking for?  You are factually incorrect.  Wizards shows you one site if they have evidence you are NOT new to D&D (Forum account) and another site if you do not have a forum account or are not logged in.  This is good design, not bad. Discussion over.

The last RPG I played was Hackmaster 4. That is a great game. I bet Pathfinder is to. And I would love to try Lamentations of the Flame Princess. The thing is these are clones, which means 2 things to me;


1 They do not and probably will never have the potential for opening up new markets that DnD does. Witness the following scene. guy carrying a pathfinder book. Someone says “cool looking book! What is it?” the most clear response guy can make is to say “oh this is pathfinder, its like DnD.


2 past clones do not have a good track record for longevity in the spot light; Tunnels and Trolls, Talislanta, Sky realms of Jorune, Harn master etc.


So while they are interesting in their own way I don’t think they will lead the way ahead, which is what we are talking about here, and a foundation of DnD’s greatness.

This thread has been highjacked. Its too bad, theres some interesting ideas floating around. 
I’ve removed content from this thread because trolling/baiting is a violation of the Code of Conduct.

You can review the Code of Conduct here: company.wizards.com/conduct

Please keep your posts polite, on-topic, and refrain from making personal attacks.You are welcome to disagree with one another but please do so respectfully and constructively.

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Your screencap actually verifies my point.  I pointed out that there is no such button as Wrecan claimed


It is in the screencap. See where it says "Games"?  That's the button you said didn't exist.  Moreover, the three buttons you also said should be there ar ein that screencap.  And they ar ein the screenc ap I included in my post, which you obviously didn't actually read.

it was "a massive blob overlaying the central graphic."


That's nto an argument.  You're simply using insulting terminology to describe a button that dominates the center of the page and takes you to yet another screen that has all the things you claimed were not easy to find.

If you don't feel it possible to defend bad website design which has been noted by other sources, don't try.


The website is not as you described.  You are wrong.