D&D Next's Fate....Gut Predictions?

I know we can't see into the future, but given what we have seen with D&D Next's development so far, which of the following do you see as the most likely outcome?  This isn't meant to be scientific...what is your gut feeling on the fate of the system?
(if you don't see any option you agree with, feel free to add your own ideas or elaborate on your impressions!) 


1. D&D Next never reaches production and is cancelled.

2. D&D Next is rushed to production with still remaining major gameplay issues and is not well-received.
 
3. D&D Next is delayed and ends up not being well-received.

4. D&D Next has an earlier than expected release but enjoys generally positive reviews.
 
5. D&D Next is delayed but ends up enjoying generally positive reviews.

6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception bya wide spectrum of D&D gamers.    

I believe we all want #6 to be the reality(and maybe it will be), but which are you feeling will be the most likely given the state of things as of today?
(I am just curious as to where people's expectations are at this time.)


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I know we can't see into the future, but given what we have seen with D&D Next's development so far, which of the following do you see as the most likely outcome?  This isn't meant to be scientific...what is your gut feeling on the fate of the system?
(if you don't see any option you agree with, feel free to add your own ideas or elaborate on your impressions!) 


1. D&D Next never reaches production and is cancelled.

2. D&D Next is rushed to production with still remaining major gameplay issues and is not well-received.
 
3. D&D Next is delayed and ends up not being well-received.

4. D&D Next has an earlier than expected release but enjoys generally positive reviews.
 
5. D&D Next is delayed but ends up enjoying generally positive reviews.

6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception bya wide spectrum of D&D gamers.    

I believe we all want #6 to be the reality(and maybe it will be), but which are you feeling will be the most likely given the state of things as of today?
(I am just curious as to where people's expectations are at this time.)

I think #2 is the most likely.  I don't think they'll just axe it, not without trying to release something.  That something, if we follow the projected trend of what we've seen so far, will be bland, lifeless, mechanically wonky, and largely pushed aside by the customer base.
The only factor which will significantly effect the fortunes of DDN is marketing. And since we've seen precisely zero of what that factor will look like (as we shouldn't, at this stage) any guesses are as premature as speculation about alien life. Anyone who thinks their home gaming group's opinions of blinded accuracy or "balance" or alignment mechanics whatever have *ANY* relevance to DDN's date beyond whether they, personally, will buy it is bonkers.
The only factor which will significantly effect the fortunes of DDN is marketing. And since we've seen precisely zero of what that factor will look like (as we shouldn't, at this stage) any guesses are as premature as speculation about alien life. Anyone who thinks their home gaming group's opinions of blinded accuracy or "balance" or alignment mechanics whatever have *ANY* relevance to DDN's date beyond whether they, personally, will buy it is bonkers.



I mostly agree with this, with the caveat that 'marketing' will also include word of mouth (often called the most powerful tool of marketing).  If the word of mouth from enough opinions is either too strong, or too distorted, it can counteract even the best marketing ploy.  But generally speaking...yah.

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

My prediction:

1) D&DN's formal release date is only announced when it's already "Gone gold" to prevent anyone from calling 'delays' on WotC.
2) D&DN releases to lukewarm reviews from critics who already knew basically what they were getting into, thanks to the playtest, preventing the system from really 'wowing' anyone
3) Wizards posts good sales figures with D&DN as a portion of the lapsed D&D crowd is drawn back while ta goodly portion of the current crowd doesn't really care, they just play whatever's got support.  The high visability of the playtest causes an initial surge of new players to boot.
4) D&D becomes the biggest fish in its small pond again, but this still doesn't cut the mustard for Hasbro.  Releases dwindle due to a lack of extra funding for new material, but surprisingly the lack of pressure lets Wizards quietly take their time to put out high-quality suppliments -- they retain only a few guys doing crunch and fluff, but when permanently relagated non-core status, they don't suffer nearly the pressure to have a release treadmill that 4e and the latter half of 3e did.
5) After several years of posting healthy profit margins but small absolute numbers and little growth, Hasbro tells wizards to can D&D and relaunch with 6e in a decade.

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The only factor which will significantly effect the fortunes of DDN is marketing. And since we've seen precisely zero of what that factor will look like (as we shouldn't, at this stage) any guesses are as premature as speculation about alien life. Anyone who thinks their home gaming group's opinions of blinded accuracy or "balance" or alignment mechanics whatever have *ANY* relevance to DDN's date beyond whether they, personally, will buy it is bonkers.



If you think an "open playtest" for thousands of fans and/or potential/lapsed customers isn't marketing, you should really consider boning up on marketing.  Doing it this way is very much a marketing move (it is also, at the same time, a design move), though I don't think it's panning out as well as they had hoped.  Also that thing they've announced and shown images for, coming up at GenCon?  That's marketing too.  Basically anything they have publicly said or done since the announcement of 5e is marketing, whether it's come through an official Marketing person employed by WotC o not(and, really, if it isn't by this point, it damn well should be).
My prediction:

D&D Next launches in 2014 around GenCon. It sells pretty well out of the gate. All editions tend to. It doesn't do well enough for Hasbro's liking though, and combined with the success of 13th Age and Pathfinder (including their new shiny MMO), it fuels WotC's decision to shelve D&D in an attempt to reset the market. It doesn't. Ten years go by and D&D gets a new relaunch. Instead of doing horribly, Pathfinder has only grown during the gap period, along with some retroclones and 13th Age. Fueled by profits pouring in from it's very successful MMO, Paizo was able to keep afloat and steal the market. The relaunch goes horribly. Instead of people lining up to get the new D&D, they are lining up for Paizo's new MMO expansion, or it's new edition, whichever Paizo feels is necessary. Instead of one titan deciding what everyone wants, there are many smaller brands capable of giving people a choice of what they want. Eventually D&D Relaunch does so badly that WotC/Hasbro just sells off the trademark to the highest bidder and spends the freed up resources on it's real baby, MTG.

Stop the H4TE

You are correct as far as you go, kedcolemsn. I should revise my statement: the marketing we have seen up until now has been a tiny fragment aimed solely at the relatively insignificant audience made up of existing D&D gamers. We have, as yet, seen almost nothing of the marketing push towards mainstream audiences intended to bring in new players, which make up the much larger potential audience WotC must snare in order for the hobby to survive.


What will happen...  

Modified 6.

D&D Next gets delayed for rework,  but ultimately releases to overwhelmingly positive reviews.  At the same time,  4th edition is rereleased as a seperate "Tactics" line as all pretenses of 4th edition support are dropped for DDN in favor of just reissuing 4th.  D&D becomes the top dog again,  in a market that starts regrowing as the video game segment suffers a 1980's style crash in the console market as it's reached a tipping point.

It reaches fair numbers of players,  and then a touchscreen tabletop is released that allows for ready visual elements to be used with the arbitrary gameplay of a PnP game.  It's ability to handle rules behind the scenes,  and it's MTGO style 24/7 internet enabled gameplay brings in massive numbers of customers who otherwise wouldn't have played/returned.

D&D becomes a mainstay product with tens of millions of active players,  and a wide variety of ways to play.

At this stage,  I firmly believe Hasbro is very committed to D&D Next's success.  The little bits and pieces I'm seeing indicate that D&D has a major place in their business plans in the next few years.
My gut reaction is the game fails based on the pretense of it wanting to please the majority by including many different options. The option lovers will be mad because not enough options are included or the "wrong" options are included, the option haters are mad because it had options in the first place.
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My gut reaction is the game fails based on the pretense of it wanting to please the majority by including many different options. The option lovers will be mad because not enough options are included or the "wrong" options are included, the option haters are mad because it had options in the first place.


I don't think there are that many true "option haters."  I think the number of people for whom the existence of options they don't like and won't use is a dealbraker is ridiculously small.

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.

 

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My gut reaction is the game fails based on the pretense of it wanting to please the majority by including many different options. The option lovers will be mad because not enough options are included or the "wrong" options are included, the option haters are mad because it had options in the first place.


I don't think there are that many true "option haters."  I think the number of people for whom the existence of options they don't like and won't use is a dealbraker is ridiculously small.

I hope you are right on this.

CORE MORE, NOT CORE BORE!
I know we can't see into the future, but given what we have seen with D&D Next's development so far, which of the following do you see as the most likely outcome?  This isn't meant to be scientific...what is your gut feeling on the fate of the system?
(if you don't see any option you agree with, feel free to add your own ideas or elaborate on your impressions!) 


1. D&D Next never reaches production and is cancelled.

2. D&D Next is rushed to production with still remaining major gameplay issues and is not well-received.
 
3. D&D Next is delayed and ends up not being well-received.

4. D&D Next has an earlier than expected release but enjoys generally positive reviews.
 
5. D&D Next is delayed but ends up enjoying generally positive reviews.

6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception bya wide spectrum of D&D gamers.    

I believe we all want #6 to be the reality(and maybe it will be), but which are you feeling will be the most likely given the state of things as of today?
(I am just curious as to where people's expectations are at this time.)



As things are now, I think #1 or #2 are the most likely, and I think #2 is more likely than #1, so pencil me in as #2.

-Polaris
I'm leaning towards 5. Reviews well, sells a decent amount a'la 2nd ed but doesn't hit the peak years of 1983/2000. Lasts around 5 years for 6th ed. 

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 Fear is the Mind Killer  

whatever it will be at this point I assume DnD next will be delayed if you assumed a 2014 release.
from what i see at this point a 2015 or 2016 release seems more likely.

comparing game design to computer programming here so might not totaly work.
But to mee finalising th base math of the game is somthing that needs to be done before you reach the 1/2 way point.
the discusion about saves clearly shows the math hasen't been finalised at this point so i see it as unlikly that we are at the half way point in the design. 
My prediction, my wish, my goal;

6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception bya wide spectrum of D&D gamers.    


 

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

Plague the downside of a 2 year playtest is that there is nothing D&D related to buy. I just got ACKS last night and have got 8 playtest classes done for homebrew D&D. Why bother waiting for D&DN when some retroclones already do it better or you can design your own. Rapidly losing interest in D&DN and they can't seem to even get the basics right atm and there is a heap of garbage in it.

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 Fear is the Mind Killer  

If you think some retroclones are better or you can design your own game and don't want to bother waiting for D&DN then please don't.

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

Fueled by profits pouring in from it's very successful MMO, Paizo was able to keep afloat and steal the market. The relaunch goes horribly. Instead of people lining up to get the new D&D, they are lining up for Paizo's new MMO expansion, or it's new edition, whichever Paizo feels is necessary.



Whoa there. You apparently have no idea what you're talking about, and are a blind Paizo/PF fan to boot. "Very successful MMO"? No such thing anymore. MMOs are a dying breed and nothing is going to stop that. There will never be a runaway success in that market ever again as the genre is on the way out. Even the juggernaut that is WoW is looking at a F2P model and microtransactions in the next year, signifying its slow but inevitible decline. Sorry to burst your bubble, but those are the painful MMO facts. 
If you think some retroclones are better or you can design your own and don't want to bother waiting for D&DN then please don't.




I realize you probably meant that as a joke, but it's not.  With Kickstarter really getting going, people really can design their own games to near professional levels.

-Polaris
What is your gut feeling on the fate of the system?
5. D&D Next is delayed but ends up enjoying generally positive reviews.
6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception by a wide spectrum of D&D gamers.    


My gut feeling is somewhere between 5 and 6. I fully suspect more than half of naysayers on this forum to buy the product anyway because it's new loot. There will probably be some delays, but that's to be expected in any big product release. I predict release somewhere in Autumn 2014 to Spring 2015, but hope for Summer 2014.

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My prediction, my wish, my goal;

6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception bya wide spectrum of D&D gamers.    


 

this is also my wish, I sincerely hope I am someone in that wide spectrum. Unfortunately, my prediction(above) doesn't pair too well with that. But, the best part of being a pessimist is when you are pleasantly surprised with a better than expected result.

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My prediction is #6, except of course on the WotC forums which continue on the same as usual.

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3 or 4 and leaning to higher numbers depending on the other half of the equation in regards to third party support, supplements, etc. It's biggest problem is buidling enough momentum out of the gates in a crowded market to convince the powers that be to invest in the later.
The only factor which will significantly effect the fortunes of DDN is marketing. And since we've seen precisely zero of what that factor will look like (as we shouldn't, at this stage) any guesses are as premature as speculation about alien life. Anyone who thinks their home gaming group's opinions of blinded accuracy or "balance" or alignment mechanics whatever have *ANY* relevance to DDN's date beyond whether they, personally, will buy it is bonkers.

A-da *f*-MEN.

It will be generally well-received, bring a lot of lapsed 3.5'ers back, and revive the line. Couple this with the release of older adventures on .pdf, plus Neverwinter [a decent MMO that uses 4E as its base], and the idea of D&D Tactics, above [a great idea], and you have some market penetration. A modular NEXT will apply the lessons learned from all editions into a "build-your-own-version" of the game in which folks have the support and the tools to play exactly as they want. Now, if we can just take care of that saving throw issue...Laughing
I think it'll do at least fine, at least initially. I think there's a floor on how poor any vaguely complete product called D&D's launch can be.

I actually agree with the call that marketing is likely to play a pretty big role, specifically in terms of how they manage to position the game within the market. Especially if there are significant delays, other games gradually hedge into D&D's space, and while it's certain to carve itself back out a pretty big chunk just by virtue of being D&D, the actual size of that chunk isn't a foregone conclusion.

I don't see a world where 85% of the TTRPG playerbase is playing the same game as something that ever happens again. The world is just different now. There are so many options so easily available that even minor differences in taste can be accounted for. Even if Next is a genuinely incredible game - if a wide spectrum of people agree that it's the best TTRPG game they've ever played - I think there's a soft ceiling on its dominance, just because we live in a different world now.

I do think that Next's fate is to some degree tied to delays, just because extra time increases the odds that some random other game will hit and grab people. Granted, aside from 13th Age, there's no obvious contenders for that (at least in the d20 genre, and at least on my radar; I admit that my finger's a few inches off the pulse of all but the most buzzworthy OSR stuff, so it's possible that there's a highly-anticipated release from that world coming down the pipe), and it's too early to tell what sort of impact that system will have (it's not out yet, although if I understand correctly it'll be in stores sometime in August). But I don't think 13th Age was on most people's radar eight months ago, so who knows what people will be talking about in eight months? (Which is still well before most people expect Next to hit.) The best possible scenario for Next is that 13th Age takes a place as just another vaguely popular d20 varient and then nothing else significant hits before Next launches, but if you start adding, like, a year here and and a year there to the schedule, the odds of something else sneaking in there increases.

I would be very surprised if Next flat-out doesn't happen. I'm not saying that I'd bet my life on it or anything, but I think that actively believing that it won't requires, at this point, significantly above-average levels of skepticism/cynicism/anticipatory schadenfreude, and isn't really warranted by what we see. I don't think somebody is necessarily crazy if they think that Next might not happen, but that's not at all where I'd put my money. I think that long before we'd see outright cancellation, we'd be likely to see dramatic reshuffling, and even that seems less likely that likely. (Although much more likely than outright cancellation.) Some new edition of D&D is going to come out at some point in the next few years.

Similarly, it's hard to imagine a world where Next comes out earlier than expected, assuming that "expected" is "Summer or fall 2014". We have no idea exactly how much work is left on Next, time-wise, but it's hard to imagine that it's so little that it hits winter/spring 2014. (If the fact that it's July and the game still has a long ways to go didn't already indicate it, they confirmed a long time ago that it's definitely not coming out in 2013.)

When Next launches, it'll launch as what's almost certainly one of the most heavily already-exposed TTRPG systems of all time. The effect that that'll have on its launch feels super hard to predict to me. (My intuition is that it's an overall positive, but it's easy to imagine at least some people feeling like they've already tried Next and don't need to buy it to try it again.)
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My prediction, my wish, my goal;

6. D&D Next is released and enjoys an overwhelmingly positive reception bya wide spectrum of D&D gamers.

This.
My prediction is #6, except of course on the WotC forums which continue on the same as usual.

And this.
Lately I've been suspecting 1, but really, I think that number 5 is most likely.

If I had to work my crystal ball, I'd guess that Next will be delayed for a while, because big projects almost always experience delays, but it will also be received generally positively, because most projects do generally work out well enough.  So in other words, it will take longer than everyone thinks, but it's not going to be a disaster or anything.

My main "worry" is that if the timeline slips it's going to create some ill will with the fans.

Then again, in the RPG industry, it seems that combing your hair the wrong direction creates ill will with the fans, so whatever.

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I am enthralled by the new game.  I couldn't imagine anything short of a dynamite success.
..."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />2. D&D Next is rushed to production with still remaining major gameplay issues and is not well-received.
 


I'm going to have to go with this one from what I've seen so far.
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Thank_Dog wrote:

2Chlorobutanal wrote:
I think that if you have to argue to convince others about the clarity of something, it's probably not as objectively clear as you think.

No, what it means is that some people just like to be obtuse.

..."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />2. D&D Next is rushed to production with still remaining major gameplay issues and is not well-received.
 


I'm going to have to go with this one from what I've seen so far.



I agree this is a possibility.  I hope they do not rush the production, which to me is the only way they will fail.  I've recommended at earliest a 2015 release.
Here's my two cents....


I don't really 'know' HASBRO or the 'Suits' at WotC which creates a problem.

1. There's no reason to 'rush the product into production' from a game-world point of view. I don't know of any big-players who are planning to release a new RPG system in the near future. So it's not 'the Space Race' in terms of WotC having some rival company that's designing The Coming Thing for tabletop RPG. 

2. That said - if it does get rushed into production it will be because the Accountants want to see a revenue stream sooner rather than later.

3. If they do rush a half finished product into production then you can wave goodbye to D&D from WotC. It will be poorly received, everyone will be disappointed and we'll continue to use whatever RPG system that we already have. Pathfinder, 4e, old copies of 3.5, 2nd, or AD&D. Or one of the other 'Retro' systems out there.


I've seen enough 'GOOD IDEAS' in the playtest so far to say that the potential to create a really fine product is there. I already like the system as well as any I've played. It's just not nearly done... if they're willing to spend the R&D money to build a winner - then that's what they'll get. The foundation is there - the seed is a good one. It's up to HASBRO/WotC to avoid the temptation of 'snatching defeat from the jaws of victory' by rushing the project. 

If I knew the managment better - then I could make a prediction. I don't - so I can't.  
If you think some retroclones are better or you can design your own and don't want to bother waiting for D&DN then please don't.




I realize you probably meant that as a joke, but it's not.  With Kickstarter really getting going, people really can design their own games to near professional levels.

-Polaris



I don't think that's an issue.  Kickstarted projects from indies reach maybe a couple of thousand of the most hardcore of RPG players,  in some cases,  not even that.

But when a person walks into a bookstore,  or gamestore,  with the intention of buying an RPG,  those products are not going to be on the shelves.  Distributers won't be carrying most of them,  and the few they do carry will be such low volume that most retailers won't have heard of them.  Nor will the gamestore be holding games for them. 

I really don't see Kickstarter as having any significant impact. 
I wasn't sold on how viable kickstarter was for projects untill I saw the pledge results for this one. Now it is for a different type of item not a TTRPG. What supprised me was the volume of cash they generated via kickstarter. I didn't think anything on kickstarter would hit this level of pledge generation..

www.kickstarter.com/projects/ouya/ouya-a...

for those that don't do links

63,416

Backers
$8,596,474

pledged of $950,000 goal


 
I agree that most people will buy the core books.  Thats why the game always flies out of the gate.  The real question is how many people will run games and ultimately buy more stuff.  

Personally, I think the game will get 4e levels of success for sure.  Many Pathfinder players will buy it and give it a try.  The same for many 4e players.  The real test will be two or three years into the game.

I suspect that WOTC is really planning at this moment to slow down the release of editions.  They really want 5e to be the anyman edition.  They will be happy if people are playing X and D&D where X can be anything from 13th Age to Pathfinder to C&C.

 
If you think some retroclones are better or you can design your own and don't want to bother waiting for D&DN then please don't.




I realize you probably meant that as a joke, but it's not.  With Kickstarter really getting going, people really can design their own games to near professional levels.

-Polaris


Given the vast range of quality we've seen in published games over the years, a middle-school child could design a game to "professional levels" in a single summer vacation.

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.

I think it will be #6, but maybe I'm being too optimistic.
I agree that most people will buy the core books.  Thats why the game always flies out of the gate.  The real question is how many people will run games and ultimately buy more stuff.  

Personally, I think the game will get 4e levels of success for sure.  Many Pathfinder players will buy it and give it a try.  The same for many 4e players.  The real test will be two or three years into the game.

I suspect that WOTC is really planning at this moment to slow down the release of editions.  They really want 5e to be the anyman edition.  They will be happy if people are playing X and D&D where X can be anything from 13th Age to Pathfinder to C&C.


I suspect the "real test" is "Did WotC learn from the mistakes of their past?"  This breaks down into a few parts, as I see it.

1) Did WotC learn from the overly restrictive 4e GSL and the overly liberal 3e licensing?  If so, then we'll have better 3rd party support for DDN than we had for 4e, but without the stealability of the system we had with 3e.

2) Did WotC learn from the mistakes of excluding fans?  If so, then they'll know that the fans of every edition have to get the feeling from the main three books that the edition will support their chosen playstyles.  If they can't achieve that, then any fan who feels that their playstyle is excluded will likely go elsewhere and not bother to try future supplements (which was a problem they had with essentials).

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.

I really don't see the game succeeding. Too many wrongheaded design decisions, not enough innovation to prise players from whatever iteration of D&D they are already playing.

I think option 3 is the likeliest scenario.
I really don't see Kickstarter as having any significant impact. 

I get the feeling you're going to regret saying that someday. I could be wrong, but I honestly think Kickstarter is similar to Steam as something that will eventually be extremely significant to the Hobby.

I also strongly suspect you'll see 13th Age in more than a few gamestores.

(I also think that if you're getting your D&D stuff at a bookstore, then you probably are better sticking with 2e gameplay anyhow).

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."