If You Can't Have Plan A What is Your Plan B


 More or less purely subjective. Briefly describe your ideal version of D&DN. Feel free to include any absolute deal breakers..

 Then in plan B describe what you will accept and by accept I mean what you will actually spend money on if you do not get your ideal version of D&D.

 Plan A. My Ideal.

A simplified d20 game that is a hybrid of Star Wars Saga and parts of 3.5 and 4th ed. No dead levels feats and talents unlock powers and abilities for some classes, spellcasters are vancian with at wills.

The deal breakers.
 A simpified incomplete system- not going to pay money to add modularity later, 4th ed reprint, 1st ed reprint- by reprint I mean a game very similar to those ediitons not 100% identical.

 What I would accept.

 A cleaned up second ed no feats or skills, d20 based higher is always better (saves, attacks, etc), no level limits and no racial restrictions. 

 Something new but it has to be better than SWSE, Pathfinder and 4th ed mechanically and it has to have some amount of complexity to it even if it is at 2nd ed levels as opposed to 3rd and 4th ed. 

 A fixed 3.5.

A 2nd and 4th ed hybrid of some sort (AEDU fighters in a d20 based 2nd ed world with priest  spheres and vancian wizards)

 Whatever they do though it has to feel like D&D so alignments, the great wheel, Vecna, Kas, Grazzt, Orcus, Demogorgon, Asmodeus, Mordenkainen spells etc are important to me. The game also has to be fun most importantly so I do not care to much about the mechanics as long as we don't have CoDzilla or 4th eds class/role structure.

 As to modularity they can do anything they like I really do not care. No alignments, 4th ed PoL setting, AEDU class book, gunpowder, Ravenloft, laser beams, space ships, ninjas, androids, gonzo races, animie powers/classes knock yourselves out as I don't have to buy it if I don't like it.
  

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

My ideal version of D&D would be a revision, and improvement of 4E such as:

- Making it more flexible in terms of grid use having rules for playing without it, in other words, a simplified method of combat along with a more tactical one.
- Balanced and interesting classes, all classes should have special stuff, be it AEDU or something else
- Economic system, elegant rules, the less subsystems and clunkiness the better.
- Make race a very important choice.

What I could not live with, and probably skip it over other systems

- It´s simply a mess of old rules glued together
- It look too much like 3E
- Classes are too unbalanced
- system is not economic, several subsystems are all over the place.
- the art is 2nd class and cartoony

Unfortunately, now DDN look a lot more like the second option.
As a second option, but still acceptable, would be something very close to my first option, but really my threshold is very small, As I already own a lot of 4E books and 2E. It would need to be very close to my expectations to make up my mind.
A 4ed that's more like Gamma World 7ed: simpler, but still mechanically sound and with variance.

"Ah, the age-old conundrum. Defenders of a game are too blind to see it's broken, and critics are too idiotic to see that it isn't." - Brian McCormick

My Plan B:

Continue with the status-quo and maintain my 4E campaigns while continually refining v3.5 and growing the mechanics for a stonger E6 system. With some heavy revisions, I can make 3E work well, even at higher levels so long as I retool some elements and completely re-do how Monsters and NPCs are created (ie. NOT with PC rules).

 
A:
Open kernel math with deep-level customability.

B:
Reverse-engineerable with minimal-to-moderate effort.

Dealbreaker:
Baked-in-flavor circlejerk.
My Plan B:

Continue with the status-quo and maintain my 4E campaigns while continually refining v3.5 and growing the mechanics for a stonger E6 system. With some heavy revisions, I can make 3E work well, even at higher levels so long as I retool some elements and completely re-do how Monsters and NPCs are created (ie. NOT with PC rules).

 



 Do you have your houserules written up?

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

My ideal system:
I generate my ability scores.
I pick my race.
I pick my class.
I choose one special ability per level from a menu of options.
The game does not have very much +1 from this +1 from that.

What I will accept:
Anything we can reasonably expect WotC to slap the D&D label on.

My dealbreaker:
The game goes 100% electronic content with no book support.
Plan A:  A version that starts with 3rd edition as it's base,  corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.

Plan B:  A version that starts with 1st or 2nd edition as it's base, corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.

Dealbreakers:
Significant 4th edition influences (Powers systems,  Healing Surges,  Alignment system,  Planar design,  Over-reliance on minatures.).
Plan A:  A version that starts with 3rd edition as it's base,  corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.

Plan B:  A version that starts with 1st or 2nd edition as it's base, corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.

So... either SWSE or 3E?

Plan A:  A version that starts with 3rd edition as it's base,  corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.

Plan B:  A version that starts with 1st or 2nd edition as it's base, corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.



 
My plan A is your plan B.
My plan B is your plan A.



Dealbreakers:
Significant 4th edition influences (Powers systems,  Healing Surges,  Alignment system,  Planar design,  Over-reliance on minatures.).



I would also include if the game goes entirely digital.  I don't really see that happening....  But, I don't WANT to have to play on a laptop/tablet.
And I sure as all 9 Hells will not be paying WoTC a monthly fee to play.


Non-issue: 
I italicized "Planar Design".  For me this one is irrelivant.  Company provided fluff - be it from TSR or nowdays WoTC only ever applies as I want it to in the games I run.  Heck I don't always stick to any one of my own fluff designs!
So they can describe the planar design however they please.....  Afterall, they have to fill x # of pages with something.
Same thing for campaign settings.  Print it.  I'll read it & then decide how much I'm going to use. 
I would also include if the game goes entirely digital.

If it does go digital, and the PDFs still cost $40, that's definitely going to be a dealbreaker.
It they keep everything on-server with a monthly subscription (and likely some god-awful DRM'd client that only runs worth a damn on some PCs), that's going be more of a "why bother?".

My Plan B:

Continue with the status-quo and maintain my 4E campaigns while continually refining v3.5 and growing the mechanics for a stonger E6 system. With some heavy revisions, I can make 3E work well, even at higher levels so long as I retool some elements and completely re-do how Monsters and NPCs are created (ie. NOT with PC rules).

 



 Do you have your houserules written up?



Hmm, I'll have to check. It's really been a while since I did v3.5 as a DM (when we use modules, we tend to stick to the RAW of books *shrugs*) but some of the houserules remain prevalent regardless of campaign. For a few example;

Removing crit conformatin rolls on all nat. 20's
Using weapon groups for feats and other specific features.
• Skills start at 4 + Intelligence modifier (x4 at 1st level) instead of 2 + Int for classes like Fighter, Paladin, etc.
 Scrolls provide versatility, NOT more firepower to spellcasters. So a wizard who had a a scroll of web, scorching burst, and magic missile can use them in place of prepared spells. For Sorcerers, they expend the level of the spell on the scroll.
 Cantrips are cast at-will and they deal max-damage. So Ray of Frost (if prepared/chosen) is at-will and deals 3 damage.
Ported over the Favored Class benefits from Pathfinder (either a +1 HP or +1 to skills when taking a level in your favorite class).
Certain races get stat-changes that make sense, such as Half-Orcs and Tieflings not getting Charisma penalties.

While I admit that these are more like band-aids for the mechanical imbalance for 3E, it's a start and have served us pretty well.     
    
 
My ideal version of D&D would be a revision, and improvement of 4E such as:

- Making it more flexible in terms of grid use having rules for playing without it, in other words, a simplified method of combat along with a more tactical one.
- Balanced and interesting classes, all classes should have special stuff, be it AEDU or something else
- Economic system, elegant rules, the less subsystems and clunkiness the better.
- Make race a very important choice.

What I could not live with, and probably skip it over other systems

- It´s simply a mess of old rules glued together
- It look too much like 3E
- Classes are too unbalanced
- system is not economic, several subsystems are all over the place.
- the art is 2nd class and cartoony

Unfortunately, now DDN look a lot more like the second option.



Pretty much describes where I'm at right now.

My plan B is a different system entirely probably Savage worlds, Dresden Files, or maybe 13th Age.


Plan A: A cleaned up 2E/3E hybrid with snipits of 4E and some new offerings.
Plan B: Keep playing AD&D and Call of Cthulhu.

Looks like we'll be getting A, but I'll still participate in B regardless.   
"The world is indeed comic, but the joke is on mankind." - H.P. Lovecraft
I bought 90% of the published 4th edition material. I have played D&D off and on for near 30 years. I would have payed a monthly or yearly subscription for a rules complete and enforcing VTT. Unless "Next" substantially improves on what I liked about 4th AND has a rules complete VTT I won't spend a penny on the core books. Adventures and minis maybe. I currently have all the game mechanics I desire for the next 20 years with regards to fantasy based PnP.
Plan "isn't-actually-going-to-happen" A: A game that actually progresses the industry, learning from previous mistakes in game design; a game with heroic adventuring and balanced, fun, and cinematic combat and non-combat challenges; a game that provides the online support that an industry giant like WotC should be pioneering.

Plan "what I actually expect to do" B: 13th Age, 4e, or a homebrew system.

Supporting an edition you like does not make you an edition warrior. Demanding that everybody else support your edition makes you an edition warrior.

Why do I like 13th Age? Because I like D&D: http://magbonch.wordpress.com/2013/10/16/first-impressions-13th-age/

AzoriusGuildmage- "I think that you simply spent so long playing it, especially in your formative years with the hobby, that you've long since rationalized or houseruled away its oddities, and set it in your mind as the standard for what is and isn't reasonable in an rpg."

Plan A: Really I want a new way to play the D&D classes and some new mechanics that intrigue me. I love my multiclassing and I want a system that gives me the flexibility of 3e and the simplicity of 2e. I want a lot of ways to bolt concepts on like 2e's kits and I don't want to have to delve into the guts of the system to make a character the way feats and PrC requirements have in the past. I want a game that attempts to undermine the sense of entitlement in the game on both sides of the screen.


Plan B: To be honest, Plan A will happen with or without 5e. The playtest all ready gives me new mechanics that intrigue me. I all ready have devised a multiclassing system that's as flexible as 3e and as simple as 2e thanks in part to ideas on the forums here. The playtest all ready gave me ways to bolt on concepts like 2e's kits and it's all ready offered strategies to avoid delving into the guts of the system to make a character. My group has very little in the way of a sense of entitlement so it's easy enough for me to ignore rabid stupidity elsewhere.



I'm basically posting here and taking part 'cause it's enriched my gaming knowledge and given me some new ideas. I don't need a new D&D.

Plan A: An elegant, flexible and balanced system optimised for running high fantasy games and allowing to do that in a variety of styles. Using polyedral dice rolls as the main device for resolution (any other sacred cow can go if need be).

Plan B: A revised and streamlined iteration of 4E: less feats and powers bloat, math fixes, faster combat, more support for exploration and roleplay pillars, support for ToTM style combat...     




  

Plan A: Refine with very little chage playtest #1.

Plan B:  A version that starts with 1st or 2nd edition as it's base, corrects it's mistakes,  and improves/expands it's features.

Dealbreakers: Significant 3e/4e influences (Too much of everything, classes, races and prestige classes and skills/feats, Powers systems,  Healing Surges,  Alignment system,  Planar design,  Over-reliance on minatures.)

 Plan A. My Ideal.

A simplified d20 game that is a hybrid of Star Wars Saga and parts of 3.5 and 4th ed. No dead levels feats and talents unlock powers and abilities for some classes, spellcasters are vancian with at wills.



More or less what you said. Except without any influence from 4ed.
My ideal would be a d20 (3.5, PF, Saga) but with simplified rules that don't have you checking the book too often to remeber "how was that rule again?"
The Advantage/Disadvantage system is a great example of what I'd like to see in DDN, something that can be used to simplify the old D&D, but not change it drastically like 4ed did. Instead of having to remember all those -1 on TH here... +2 on AC there... you now have the intuitive Adv/Disadv system.

3ed didn't change much of 2ed in essence, but it made it simpler and more diverse at the same time.
The THAC0 rules followed basically the same math as TH and AC from 3ed, only the adding and subtracting was simplified with the general rules of "higher is always better". The same for many other rules that mirrored 2ed rules.
And 3ed filled some gaps that 2ed had which were kinda "meh" in the game, adding something nice there.

Another good example of the right way to head is the new Save system.
3ed simplified 2ed's save system and made it make more sense than those "rod, wand saves". 5ed is doing the same.

So basically, I would like to see DDN have the same philosophy of improving 3ed, like 3ed did with 2ed, instead of making an entire new game like 4ed did.

I want new, interesting ideas/approaches to the old game.



The deal breakers.



A game that doesn't feel like D&D anymore.

Also, lack of options for character customization.
This new skill system is one such thing that may turn out to be a deal-breaker to me. You get 4 skills, they all level up along with you, and that's about it.

Also, an overly-smplified system. Simplifying is good, but doing it in excess that you take away character customization and diversity is very, very bad.
The skill system mentioned above is one good example of over-simplification. Even 2ed's rather weird Proficiency system provided better customization than that.

And last, and perhaps the biggest deal breaker for me... a bunch of rules that make no sense.
Things like "Per Encounter" powers make no sense at all. People can sing the marvels of how it is so great a system to "balance" the game all they want... It makes no sense, and an RPG is a game of imagination and immersion, both of which are broken when rules make no sense.
"Powers" like some you had in 4ed that when you strike an enemy, another enemy by his side also takes damage for no apparent reason... also don't make sense. That's cool for video-games, not an RPG.
The rules of an RPG, even when very abstract like HP and Damage, need to make sense and more or less represent the scene you're imagining.


 What I would accept.



Something more akin to 2ed than 3ed, as long as we have more character options and diversity than we had in 2ed.
2ed was a very fun game to play, but the only thing that bothered me was that all fighters looked mostly the same, all thieves looked mostly the same, etc.
Something that gives you choices as you level, such as 3ed's feats and skills, is a must (although the system need not be exactly the same).




My fall-back plan is GURPS Dungeon Fantasy with the "...On the Cheap" add-on and all the brutal realism rules in effect.

Alternately, if I don't feel like doing that much work, I'll stick to either AD&D 1e or an E6 version of Pathfinder with some optional rules from certain supplements in place and perhaps a tiny bit of houseruling.

If I'm feeling truly motivated and have an equally eager group of players, maybe Burning Wheel.

If you have to resort to making offensive comments instead of making logical arguments, you deserve to be ignored.

I didn't give any deal breakers because I don't see Plan A not happening, but I suppose if they didn't offer DRM free pdfs I'd not buy it so that's a deal breaker.
( plan A) My ideal version of D&D:
would be a very rudementary base system, that would be heavely modified depending on the extra moduals you use.

the difrence between playing with the forgoten realms rule set or the grayhawk ruleset might feal as big as the difrence between 2nd and 3rd edition.
But each rule set can be quickly masterd if you are familar with the base rules.

Giving each campaign setting the option to modify the system to best express the story of that campaign setting, instead of a campaign setting trying to confirm to the rules.
Almost to the point where  instead of saying i play DnD you say i play Forgotten realms or i play Eberon.

Plan B
5th edition would be added to our library of game systems that can be used.
and might be played when a DM thinks it is the system that best fits his world he has created in his mind.
Just like now somtimes we use 2nd edition pathfinger,3.x,wite wolf roleplaying, 4th edition depending on what system best serves the story. 

deal breakers:
non 
A:
Open kernel math with deep-level customability.

B:
Reverse-engineerable with minimal-to-moderate effort.

Dealbreaker:
Baked-in-flavor circlejerk.



I wanna be yo e-buddy. 

Plan A: A game with robust features, pick up and play design, and solidly thought thorugh "behind the scenes" math.

Plan B: See plan A.

I'm not buying something I don't like for nostalgia's sake.