Is Modularity Just a Marketing Term?

So there have been a lot of discussions about what should or should not be in DDN.  One of the stated goals is to be able to capture the feel of each of the editions.  Also, they have stated that each class (possibly each race) from each edition's PHB will be in the PHB in one shape or form.  For the most part, WotC has kept their word regarding this, with hiccups on things like the Assassin being a Rogue Scheme rather than its own class and the Illusionist being a Wizard Tradition (I agree with this more than the Assassin).  But how far should that extend?  Personally, I think each race and class that was a PHB1 race or class in ANY edition should be available in the DDN Player's Handbook.  For the most part, races only take about a page or two, and classes take only a handful.

In terms of where the limits should come from in terms of races and classes in regards to the PHB, that should and always has been a table issue.  If one table wants just the core four races and core four classes, that should absolutely be an option for them.  But if another table wants to play with the entire PHB1 suite of classes and races, that should also be an option with the Standard game.  Shunting off specific races or classes into requiring the Advanced modules is a non-option. I think if WotC goes back on the initial promises that they made in terms of what classes and races will be available, they move Modularity into just being an empty promise meant to lead us along.

As for the versions of the game, I think they should go as follows:

Basic Game:
Dwarf, Elf, Halfing Human (probably with one subrace of each assumed)
The Basic versions of the Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, and Wizard (perhaps with a set domain, fighting style, scheme, and tradition)

Standard Game:
All PHB1 races from past editions (ALL OF THEM), with 2-3 subraces of each (except human)
All PHB1 classes from past editions (ALL OF THEM), with additional options for each (additionally, I think a Basic or assumed version should be available as well, so that a person can add a Druid into the Basic game if they want).
Technically, any of the options presented here are in and of themselves modules.  They can be removed if the table decides to remove them.

Advanced Game:
THIS IS NOT WHERE RACES AND CLASSES BELONG.
Modules to modify the Standard version of the game in some way.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
Sounds about right to me.

There are a great many problems that can be circumvented by players and DMs having a mature discussion about what the game is going to be like before they ever sit down together to play.

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

 

You really shouldn't speak for others.  You can't hear what someone else is saying when you try to put your words in their mouth.

 

Fencing & Swashbuckling as Armor.

D20 Modern Toon PC Race.

Mecha Pilot's Skill Challenge Emporium.

 

Save the breasts.

Sounds right to me too. 

Why are we asking if modularity is just a marketing term, again?  All the packets and designer quotes seem to indicate that modularity is a core assumption of the game, and that everything is module, based on DM (and to a lesser extent, Player) preferences.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

Yep, looks good.

Danny



Advanced Game:
THIS IS NOT WHERE RACES AND CLASSES BELONG.
Modules to modify the Standard version of the game in some way.



the more i look at it the more i start to think the moduals will be much like the options given in the 2nd edition combat and tactics and spells and magic books.
 
I agree that no classes or races should be introduced here.
but some alternative race or class options might be introduced, to help characters take advantage of options given in the moduals.
Sounds right to me too. 

Why are we asking if modularity is just a marketing term, again?  All the packets and designer quotes seem to indicate that modularity is a core assumption of the game, and that everything is module, based on DM (and to a lesser extent, Player) preferences.


      And what is a "module" besides talk?  Our thread starter thinks a race or class is, but DMs have always had the power to ban any rac/class or other that is not liked.  Calling this a module is meaningless. 
      So far we have not seen an actual module even in outline.  It has simply been an answer for when somebody says "I hate X" or "Y is broken" to say "You can use a module to take care of that problem.".  Pure marketing.
     "Module" has been a god word, able to deal with everyything, without explanation of how it deals with anything.
Marandahir, I titled the thread like this for a number of reasons.  First, as a message to Wizards of the Coast to what it would appear to me like if they cut out specific PHB races or classes (the 4E ones always seem to be the ones on the chopping block) from the DDN PHB.  They need to stand firm with their initial statement that all PHB1 classes will be in the game, and I think they need to apply that same ideal to the PHB1 races.  There is NO definitive justification for cutting a race or class out of them game.  Doing so, especially when targetting a specific edition for being ignored just seems spiteful.  Basically, the message they would be sending is "Your playstyle and preferences are not good enough for inclusion".

Secondly, as a message to forum members advocating placing arbitrary limits on what other people want.  It isn't like people advocating every PHB1 race and PHB1 class asking the world.  It is something like 12 classes and 10 races, looking at less than 20% of the book.  Given that this is less than every edition other than 4E (where there is no spell section to eat up 75% of the book), I really don't see the problem with having the full class suite.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
The problem seems to be with people who mistakenly believe 'core' means 'mandatory'.

It doesn't.  The DM can disallow *any* game element he chooses, regardless of whether it's printed in the initial book outlay or supplemental material, in a generic supplement or a campaign setting.  You don't like it, don't use it.  It's that simple.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.


Advanced Game:
THIS IS NOT WHERE RACES AND CLASSES BELONG.
Modules to modify the Standard version of the game in some way.



the more i look at it the more i start to think the moduals will be much like the options given in the 2nd edition combat and tactics and spells and magic books.
 
I agree that no classes or races should be introduced here.
but some alternative race or class options might be introduced, to help characters take advantage of options given in the moduals.



Absolutely, agree with the alternative options for races or classes possibly being modules, such as the spell point Wizard or whatever.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
Sounds right to me too. 

Why are we asking if modularity is just a marketing term, again?  All the packets and designer quotes seem to indicate that modularity is a core assumption of the game, and that everything is module, based on DM (and to a lesser extent, Player) preferences.



I have to disagree here.  All the designer quots seem to indicate that modularity is a core assumption of the game. All the packets and every scrap of actual rules we've ever been shown seem to indicate that WotC is doing it's best to make modularity as difficult as possible to achieve satisfactorily.  The core math of the game, the basic principles of the classes, any attempt at balance, and every socket I'd want to turn a dial in require rebuilding the game from the ground up to have any prayer of achieving the system I want.  A game built with "modularity as a core assumption" would be designed with easily removable parts so that you can swap in different parts that you want with minimal impact on the rest of the system.  Even the barest hints at modularity we've gotten so far (like average instead of rolled HP) have ripple effects elsewhere that are hard to account for (like gimping the feat that lets you roll twice for HP,1 and changing the fighter/wizard HP ratio to a non-negligible degree).  Next is designed with modularity as a core assumption only insofar as it makes a great excuse for them to dodge the difficult design decisions and eschew looking for the compromise soutions that are desperately needed if they are to have any hope of uniting the fanbase in anything but name.  So that's why it's worth asking if modularity is anything but a marketing term.

1 Granted, it's still useful for when you spend HD, but not nearly as useful.  And if you also choose one of the optional healing rules that don't use HD, it really is completely useless.
The problem seems to be with people who mistakenly believe 'core' means 'mandatory'.

It doesn't.  The DM can disallow *any* game element he chooses, regardless of whether it's printed in the initial book outlay or supplemental material, in a generic supplement or a campaign setting.  You don't like it, don't use it.  It's that simple.


Honestly, I really wish we could put the word "Core" out to pasture.  Nothing is core, everything is optional, right down to the Dwarf, Elf, Halfling, Human and Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, and Wizard.  All races and classes are in and of themselves modules, the only requirement is that you have a race and a class, whatever that might be.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
The problem seems to be with people who mistakenly believe 'core' means 'mandatory'.

It doesn't.  The DM can disallow *any* game element he chooses, regardless of whether it's printed in the initial book outlay or supplemental material, in a generic supplement or a campaign setting.  You don't like it, don't use it.  It's that simple.


Honestly, I really wish we could put the word "Core" out to pasture.  Nothing is core, everything is optional, right down to the Dwarf, Elf, Halfling, Human and Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, and Wizard.  All races and classes are in and of themselves modules, the only requirement is that you have a race and a class, whatever that might be.



This is why I usually use the term 'Initial book outlay'.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
First, yes modularity is a marketing term. IT's something that player want, that the company can market, and can be said in a single word. When one runs wild with the idea of modularity as a marketing team might want there are so many great things to sell you on that they have never even hinted at. It really is a beutiful term as far as marketing goes.

Second, modularity isn't JUST a marketing term. It's a concept involving the idea of a design that can be seperated into isolated pieces that can be added, removed, and exchanged. It's not a very specific term in that modularity can be accomplished to varrying degrees, in different ways, to achieve many design goals. Not only that but modularity is almost inherent in the way most TTRPG's are designed. Most designs focus on individual rules for individual aspects of the game. For example take falling rules which while reliant on say the concept of DCs are for the most part very modular and can be removed or modified without affecting other parts of the system. They've always been this way because they are an isolated concept.

Third, DDN is unique in it's modular design, but it is the first D&D where modularity is a high priority goal. It's no longer a side effect of design, but rather a goal. How well it's achieving it is debatable but from what I can see it's various pieces are all very seperable.

Fourth, the absolute core functions of the game, things which all modules will rely on, the core math if you will, will never be completely modular. There needs to be a common base upon which to build and modyfing this base will of course have large reaching consequences. One can not expect to change the way DC's work and not have to deal with reprocussion throughout the system. There may be modules for doing these things but they will never be simple swap and forget modules like say changing the resting modules.

Fifth, no matter how modular something is, someone could argue it could be more modular. Some modules will inherently rely on interaction with others and there will never be complete modularity. So long as we can change most things outside the core math without having to do a huge system overhall, then I'd say the game is pretty modular.
Shunting off specific races or classes into requiring the Advanced modules is a non-option.

It should be the exception, but I can see cases where it is the only real option. A particular race or class may depend on optional rules that exist only in certain advanced modules. For example, using a vampire as a PC will tightly link to exactly what set of HP/recovery rules you use. A Spell Thief class that steals mana points only makes sense if your game uses mana points for spell casting. Some versions of warlord that are built around small tactical movement powers will really only work with a detailed grid map combat system.

First, yes modularity is a marketing term. IT's something that player want, that the company can market, and can be said in a single word. When one runs wild with the idea of modularity as a marketing team might want there are so many great things to sell you on that they have never even hinted at. It really is a beutiful term as far as marketing goes.

If modularity were really such an in-demand selling point for RPGs, GURPS would own the hobby.  If GMs really wanted a game that was a design-your-own-game 'toolkit,' then Hero/RTalsorian's Fuzion would have been an overnight sensation and dominated the industry.

Vanishingly few folks want what 5e is offering, and, not surprisingly, 5e is showing little sign of delivering it, anyway.    

It is just marketing spin. 

 

 

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

First, yes modularity is a marketing term. IT's something that player want, that the company can market, and can be said in a single word. When one runs wild with the idea of modularity as a marketing team might want there are so many great things to sell you on that they have never even hinted at. It really is a beutiful term as far as marketing goes.

If modularity were really such an in-demand selling point for RPGs, GURPS would own the hobby.  If GMs really wanted a game that was a design-your-own-game 'toolkit,' then Hero/RTalsorian's Fuzion would have been an overnight sensation and dominated the industry.

Vanishingly few folks want what 5e is offering, and, not surprisingly, 5e is showing little sign of delivering it, anyway.    

It is just marketing spin. 



I sincerely hope you are wrong about this, Tony.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
The problem seems to be with people who mistakenly believe 'core' means 'mandatory'.

It doesn't.  The DM can disallow *any* game element he chooses, regardless of whether it's printed in the initial book outlay or supplemental material, in a generic supplement or a campaign setting.  You don't like it, don't use it.  It's that simple.

I definitely don't think that the general confusion regarding the term "core", along with "basic", "advanced" and "standard" has helped, especially since "core" means different things depending on the nature of the option. 3.5 has core races and it has core rules for how armor works. The races are sort of inherantly modular; if I don't want gnomes or something for whatever reason, then there are no gnomes. Done. If I don't like the way armor works, then I'm out of luck, unless I want to homebrew something or wait until Unearthed Arcana comes out. The term "core" is applied to both, but they're fundementally different in terms of their modularity.

I agree that there seems to be this weird vein of belief that having the exact options that one prefers be the thing that has "core" applied to it constitutes some sort of validation of one's playstyle, like if I hate halflings and they put Halflings in the core then they're telling me I'm wrong to hate halflings or something like that, when really if I hate Halflings I can just not use them or whatever.

Dwarves invented beer so they could toast to their axes. Dwarves invented axes to kill people and take their beer. Swanmay Syndrome: Despite the percentages given in the Monster Manual, in reality 100% of groups of swans contain a Swanmay, because otherwise the DM would not have put any swans in the game.
First, yes modularity is a marketing term. IT's something that player want, that the company can market, and can be said in a single word. When one runs wild with the idea of modularity as a marketing team might want there are so many great things to sell you on that they have never even hinted at. It really is a beutiful term as far as marketing goes.

If modularity were really such an in-demand selling point for RPGs, GURPS would own the hobby.  If GMs really wanted a game that was a design-your-own-game 'toolkit,' then Hero/RTalsorian's Fuzion would have been an overnight sensation and dominated the industry.

Vanishingly few folks want what 5e is offering, and, not surprisingly, 5e is showing little sign of delivering it, anyway.    

It is just marketing spin. 

Oddly enough, my last 3.5 Ed group left D&D for GURPS, and most people I know feel it is a superior system.  D&D's draw in my crowds is in its "feel", not its mechanics.

Some of us would like to see what the feel of D&D would look like combined with much more modular mechanics, believing it might very well be the best of both worlds.
Modularity appears to be a marketing term, or a pacifier for help town down the edition wars. Nothing to this point really indicates that type of design process, because all the classes are based on what feels right, versus building things up from basic building blocks. Especially when trying to build in modularity for 4E or 1E.
As for the versions of the game, I think they should go as follows:

Basic Game:
Dwarf, Elf, Halfing Human (probably with one subrace of each assumed)
The Basic versions of the Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, and Wizard (perhaps with a set domain, fighting style, scheme, and tradition)

Standard Game:
All PHB1 races from past editions (ALL OF THEM), with 2-3 subraces of each (except human)
All PHB1 classes from past editions (ALL OF THEM), with additional options for each (additionally, I think a Basic or assumed version should be available as well, so that a person can add a Druid into the Basic game if they want).
Technically, any of the options presented here are in and of themselves modules.  They can be removed if the table decides to remove them.

Advanced Game:
THIS IS NOT WHERE RACES AND CLASSES BELONG.
Modules to modify the Standard version of the game in some way.


It's good for you that you think this, because it's what the devs think as well.

And no, it's not just a marketing term.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Modularity appears to be a marketing term, or a pacifier for help town down the edition wars. Nothing to this point really indicates that type of design process, because all the classes are based on what feels right, versus building things up from basic building blocks. Especially when trying to build in modularity for 4E or 1E.


You say "nothing to this point really indicates" but that's only if you refuse to acknowledge the indications.  Have they put it in a packet?  No, because the packet is not intended to be a representation of their best effort at executing the final design goal.  The packet is designed to test things, and they haven't decided to start testing modules so we don't have any in the packets.  That doesn't mean that they're not designing the game with modules in mind, or that they don't really mean it when they say they want modularity.  It does mean that saying that "Well I haven't seen modularity yet" doesn't have any validity or meaning whatsoever.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
As for the versions of the game, I think they should go as follows:

Basic Game:
Dwarf, Elf, Halfing Human (probably with one subrace of each assumed)
The Basic versions of the Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, and Wizard (perhaps with a set domain, fighting style, scheme, and tradition)

Standard Game:
All PHB1 races from past editions (ALL OF THEM), with 2-3 subraces of each (except human)
All PHB1 classes from past editions (ALL OF THEM), with additional options for each (additionally, I think a Basic or assumed version should be available as well, so that a person can add a Druid into the Basic game if they want).
Technically, any of the options presented here are in and of themselves modules.  They can be removed if the table decides to remove them.

Advanced Game:
THIS IS NOT WHERE RACES AND CLASSES BELONG.
Modules to modify the Standard version of the game in some way.


It's good for you that you think this, because it's what the devs think as well.

And no, it's not just a marketing term.


They need to be more clear about this.  A stated list of things that WILL be in, no-ifs-ands-or-buts period-end-of-story, would go a long way.  This nebulous "this is what we would like to do" is not good enough.  They need to say, "these will be in, if they are not, we are not done".  More clarity would not harm them.  And yes, any promise can turn into a broken promise, but they appear to be doing more harm by not giving people an idea of what to expect.  People can say "it's only a playtest, not the complete game" all they want, but until there is a stated goal and stated list of what classes and races will be in, I don't have much reason to think the completed game will contain the full PHB1 suite of races and classes.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
They can't do that, because they're still early in development.  They only have "this is what we would like to do."

You're right that it won't harm them to say what's in and what's not - what harms them is if that determination has to change later, after they say it. 

They absolutely should not make absolute what's in and what's not statements during development.  I've seen games companies do that and it is nearly always a bad idea.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
You mean they might not want to say "Look at all these fancy digital tools that will be available and working perfectly when 4e releases"?

It seems they might have learned their lesson about (assumed/seemingly) concrete promises. 
You mean they might not want to say "Look at all these fancy digital tools that will be available and working perfectly when 4e releases"?

It seems they might have learned their lesson about (assumed/seemingly) concrete promises. 



I am pretty sure if one of the designers kills themselves and deletes all the data beforehand, DDN might still be able to come out.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
So, how may races (and sub-races) does that include? How many classes does that include? And you want all this to be in D&DN-Core, not in any optional modules?

So do you include monstrous races in this list? Why or why not?

I don't think D&DN-Core needs that many races, or that many classes. 10 of each should be plenty, honestly, especially since I don't see the game being played by anybody that isn't completely new to the system without modules.

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."

Stop thinking modularity and start thinking splatbook. The main difference is they seem to want to do 2nd ed style splats instead of 3rd and 4th ed mechanical splats. Or at least more 2nd ed type books compared to the 3rd and 4th ed bloat.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 Fear is the Mind Killer  

So, how may races (and sub-races) does that include? How many classes does that include? And you want all this to be in D&DN-Core, not in any optional modules?

So do you include monstrous races in this list? Why or why not?

I don't think D&DN-Core needs that many races, or that many classes. 10 of each should be plenty, honestly, especially since I don't see the game being played by anybody that isn't completely new to the system without modules.


Not the monstrous races, they were never really part of the PHB

elves
half-elves
halflings
dwarves
half-orcs
humans 
Dragonborn 
Gnomes

Fighters
rangers
paladins
barbarians
warlords
Assassin
bards
rogues
clerics
druids
wizards
sorcerers
warlocks
monk

am I missing anything ? (except the eladrim, which is really a High elf with another name) 
Try radiance RPG. A complete D20 game that supports fantasy and steampunk. Download the FREE PDF here: http://www.radiancerpg.com
First, yes modularity is a marketing term. IT's something that player want, that the company can market, and can be said in a single word. When one runs wild with the idea of modularity as a marketing team might want there are so many great things to sell you on that they have never even hinted at. It really is a beutiful term as far as marketing goes.

If modularity were really such an in-demand selling point for RPGs, GURPS would own the hobby.  If GMs really wanted a game that was a design-your-own-game 'toolkit,' then Hero/RTalsorian's Fuzion would have been an overnight sensation and dominated the industry.

Vanishingly few folks want what 5e is offering, and, not surprisingly, 5e is showing little sign of delivering it, anyway.    

It is just marketing spin. 




 Ding ding ding. This man gets it.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 Fear is the Mind Killer  

So, how may races (and sub-races) does that include? How many classes does that include? And you want all this to be in D&DN-Core, not in any optional modules?

So do you include monstrous races in this list? Why or why not?

I don't think D&DN-Core needs that many races, or that many classes. 10 of each should be plenty, honestly, especially since I don't see the game being played by anybody that isn't completely new to the system without modules.



I want all the PHB1 races and all the PHB1 classes.  So the following:
Races - Dwarf, Dragonborn, Elf (combine the Elf-Wood and Eladrin-High into one race), Gnome, Half-Elf, Halfling, Half-Orc, Human, and Tiefling.  This yields 9 races (10 if you leave the Eladrin as a separate race).  Races take up a page a piece, so ten pages tops.

Classes - Barbarian, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue (combine it with the Assassin), Sorcerer, Warlock, Warlord, Wizard.  Classes take up around five pages a piece, give or take (Cleric currently is a bit big), so somewhere in the realm of 70 pages.

So even with the playtest's HUGE typeset, the classes and races section would take up a quarter of the book.  However will we survive?!
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
So, how may races (and sub-races) does that include? How many classes does that include? And you want all this to be in D&DN-Core, not in any optional modules?

So do you include monstrous races in this list? Why or why not?

I don't think D&DN-Core needs that many races, or that many classes. 10 of each should be plenty, honestly, especially since I don't see the game being played by anybody that isn't completely new to the system without modules.


Not the monstrous races, they were never really part of the PHB

elves
half-elves
halflings
dwarves
half-orcs
humans 
Dragonborn 
Gnomes

Fighters
rangers
paladins
barbarians
warlords
Assassin
bards
rogues
clerics
druids
wizards
sorcerers
warlocks
monk

am I missing anything ? (except the eladrim, which is really a High elf with another name) 



Tieflings.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
Drow. Especially with Forgotten Realms being the initial setting.

Psion, possibly under the name of a Wizard tradition called “Enchanter”, using the keyword “Psychic”, and a nonvancian spellcasting mechanic, like a mana point system or 4 slots at the highest available level.
So, how may races (and sub-races) does that include? How many classes does that include? And you want all this to be in D&DN-Core, not in any optional modules?

So do you include monstrous races in this list? Why or why not?

I don't think D&DN-Core needs that many races, or that many classes. 10 of each should be plenty, honestly, especially since I don't see the game being played by anybody that isn't completely new to the system without modules.


Not the monstrous races, they were never really part of the PHB

elves
half-elves
halflings
dwarves
half-orcs
humans 
Dragonborn 
Gnomes
Tiefling

Fighters
rangers
paladins
barbarians
warlords
Assassin
bards
rogues
clerics
druids
wizards
sorcerers
warlocks
monk

am I missing anything ? (except the eladrim, which is really a High elf with another name) 



Tieflings.


Edited, thanks

And the assassin used to be core, so to me it's in too 
Try radiance RPG. A complete D20 game that supports fantasy and steampunk. Download the FREE PDF here: http://www.radiancerpg.com
Drow. Especially with Forgotten Realms being the initial setting.

Psion, possibly under the name of a Wizard tradition called “Enchanter” and using the keyword “Psychic”.


Psionics have always been an optional add-on, in every edition

As for drows, they should be core in FR, but they are definitively "monsters" in the base game 
Try radiance RPG. A complete D20 game that supports fantasy and steampunk. Download the FREE PDF here: http://www.radiancerpg.com
Drow are core in 4.5.
Drow are core in 4.5.


Ok, I guess I missed one........what is 4.5 ?
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Drow are core in 4.5.



Seeing as there is no 4.5, and no 4.5 PHB1, no they are not.
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
Essentials, Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms,  have Drow alongside Dragonborn, Tiefling, and Half-Races.

Hopefully, 5e will make Half-Races a system that can multirace any races.
Essentials, Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms,  have Drow alongside Dragonborn, Tiefling, and Half-Races.

Hopefully, 5e will make Half-Races a system that can multirace any races.


I'm ambivalent on essentials being "canon" enough to mandate an inclusion in a list like this one, but if it pleases some people, i'm all for it.
Try radiance RPG. A complete D20 game that supports fantasy and steampunk. Download the FREE PDF here: http://www.radiancerpg.com
Essentials, Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms,  have Drow alongside Dragonborn, Tiefling, and Half-Races.

Hopefully, 5e will make Half-Races a system that can multirace any races.



Weird, I don't see 4.5 on any of those books.  Nor do I see Player's Handbook on any of them.  Are my copies defective?
CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
Essentials is canon. If anything the designers wanted 4.0 to go out of existence. But there was a backlash. In any case, both 4.0 and 4.5 seem to have enough of a support base to take both into consideration.