Playtesting

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Any word on playtesting?

When will people from the boards be asked about it. How people will be asked about it? When will we know about it? How will the announcement be made?

I'm not trying to rush or be a pain, I just thought a thread about playtesting was in order.

I have a diverse group of players, 50%/50% male to female and our group has some 10+ year olds offspring that also play that want to try the new system.
I've been begging for playtest info for a few days now. This is what I've gotten:

1. How many playtesters do you guys plan to use?
Many, I don't know a total though

2. How many must be in the RPGA?
Half? Not sure yet.

3. Do you know when the application is going to be available? This week or "sometime in September"?
Sometime in September

4. What format will the playtest documents be in? I'm wondering it will resemble the final product with art and some layout work, or if it'll be a stack of xeroxed napkins with scribbles on them.
Word documents and spreadsheets with drawings from the preschoolers in our building.

5. Will there be a supplied adventure or will you guys just send the rules and tell us to go to town on them.
Under discussion, could be series of encounters or a full adventure

6. Who should I send the check to, and/or provide sexual favors for, to insure I get in?
Cash man, Cash

EDIT: I may as well add my info:

I've got two groups ready and willing to test.

Group #1 consists of veterans. We've got over a century of D&D experience between us. There are five men and one woman.

Group #2 consists of a mix of vets and newbies. Some of them have been playing for over a decade while the others have been gaming for only a year or so.

As far as testing goes, I don't think WOTC could ask for a better cross section of players.
Do we have an address to send the cash?

hay, just woundering
I've been begging for playtest info for a few days now. This is what I've gotten:

Thanks for the update. Maybe someone else will drop in for some more info.
Indeed, thank you for the information. I look forward to an opportunity to playtest 4th Edition.
It seems like it's coming soon. Hopefully even this weekend. But maybe that's too much to hope for. But I've been scouring the boards looking for any info as well. Thanks for posting what you know.
I just want to know if playtesting will be available to us Canadians?
Yea, they are not excluding anyone based on your country.
Canadians are good to go!
I'm assuming that they'll be spreading the playtesting around the world, since there shouldn't really be any barriers. I assume they'll keep it to English speaking people, but that's pretty wide anyway. Now all I need to do is convince them that people in Edinburgh speak English ...
I'm assuming that they'll be spreading the playtesting around the world, since there shouldn't really be any barriers. I assume they'll keep it to English speaking people, but that's pretty wide anyway. Now all I need to do is convince them that people in Edinburgh speak English ...

Just tell them you all sound like Sean Connery... :D
So what are the size of the groups that everyone will try and playtest with?

I have a group of 4 to start, but I am sure that i can get another 4 plus there is a FLGS that wouldn't mind having a go of it.
What about non US residents ? Can wee apply for playtesting ?

I live in France but have no problem using sourcebooks in english (more than half my D&D library is in english, as I buy books as soon as they are published :D )

Of course I can also write playtest reports in english.

I will add that I have two groups playing 3.5 currently (one psionics campaign, an another in Eberron), with male and female players (ages ~ 20-35, both experienced players, and newbies), so I will have no trouble making a group in order to make a beta test if needed.
What about non US residents ? Can wee apply for playtesting ?

I live in France but have no problem using sourcebooks in english (more than half my D&D library is in english, as I buy books as soon as they are published :D )

Of course I can also write playtest reports in english.

While I live a little closer, Canada, I would also like to know about this. Also, my birthday is in September and it (play testing) would make a good gift, oh nice and handsome people at WotC.
Latest news:

We're in a crunch trying to get classes spiffed up and entered into a database. We need to get our playtest packets together, and we're developing the classes rapidly. I've been in the rogue, ranger, and cleric meetings this week, and I think they're all on pretty solid ground.

Latest news:
Originally Posted by Logan Bonner's blog
We're in a crunch trying to get classes spiffed up and entered into a database. We need to get our playtest packets together, and we're developing the classes rapidly. I've been in the rogue, ranger, and cleric meetings this week, and I think they're all on pretty solid ground.

I looked at this and snorted. Most gamers would love to be able to attend a meeting like this. Sort of reminds me of "Accepted" when the guys watching girls by the pool said "Can you believe this is a class?"
Hehe. Yeah.
I'm sure there are days when it sucks, but for the most part, I really envy these designers. What an awesome way to make a paycheck.
I'd like to playtest a Warlord or a Sorcerer, but I'm not getting my hopes up.
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I really want to get in on this playtest. My whole group is interested. Very, very exciting.

Ktulu
I've got a group that plays on Friday nights. It consists of me and 7 others. I am dying to playtest 4th edition with this group. If for no other reason, it will give me a chance to see if I like the changes before shelling out cash for a new edition. I really need some info on how I can be involved in playtesting. Yesterday, would be preferable.
i tend to have a real problem with players geting up set becase i dont want powergameing as much as role playing but it seem to me that as time gose on more and more players are looking for that class that puts all the outhers to shame i play with stats that rang form 3-18 most of my players scrap a the rolls if they have a 9 or lower and the class seem to be geting more and more over powerd as time on what with the book of the nine sword an so on
i like to see more role playing rewords and less rewords for being able to kill something 5 level higher then you by your self
I've got a group that plays on Friday nights. It consists of me and 7 others. I am dying to playtest 4th edition with this group. If for no other reason, it will give me a chance to see if I like the changes before shelling out cash for a new edition. I really need some info on how I can be involved in playtesting. Yesterday, would be preferable.

The only word we have so far is that you should find a group of people that want to play and then watch D&D Insider for the news of when to sign up (from Dave Noonan's blog). Oh and it will be sometime in September. That could be tomorrow or in a month.

I'm right there with you on excitement. However, for book buying reasons, you will have quite a while to evaluate whether to shell out the cash or not since they won't be up for sale till late next June.
I play for 11 years (since 2nd edition). I have a good mix of players (male/female, ages 9-32(mostly 20+), expeirenced/newbie), most of them speaking fluent English. We would like to playtest and we can turn our weekend sessions into playtests, dropping the current campaign for some time (until we have the chance to convert to 4E).
Please, please, please let us in. We Russian are inquisitive lot We'll find every little bug in the rules... :D

P.S. Oh! And we all are RPGA members BTW.
So it's September now. Maybe we'll hear something soon.
One can only hope...
I'd like to take part on this play test with my group as well.

I have a group of 5 "mostly like to play low level/ - magic as grim & gritty"- testers ready :p
Little update:

This morning, I'm working on playtest material for a future iteration of the playtest. I'm going to work those groups pretty hard, I can tell you that. To repeat our answer to the "How do I playtest?" question:

1) Get yourself a stable group of D&D players. They don't have to be experts or anything. But when we send you stuff, you're gonna need to actually play it.

2) Get hooked up with D&D Insider, and watch that space like a hawk. When we need tables, you'll see it posted there first.

It's like christman...waiting and beeing not sure if its THAT present you will get you wanted so hard.

We are a group of 5 players in Austria (Central Europe) of age 28-34 and we really would love to test the 4th Edition
Shouldn't they be sending cash to playtesters? :D
Little update:This morning, I'm working on playtest material for a future iteration of the playtest. I'm going to work those groups pretty hard, I can tell you that. To repeat our answer to the "How do I playtest?" question:

1) Get yourself a stable group of D&D players. They don't have to be experts or anything. But when we send you stuff, you're gonna need to actually play it.

2) Get hooked up with D&D Insider, and watch that space like a hawk. When we need tables, you'll see it posted there first.

I'm watching. Hopefully we willsee something. My game shop is very interested in hosting a game.
I don't think game shops will work. You have to sign an NDA, and if any of it leaks, you are responsible. A self contained gaming group isn't that bad, but a bunch of people getting involved drastically increases the chances of leakage.

I'm pretty sure WOTC is looking for testers in private little gaming groups. I'd imagine any sort of public testing would be frowned on or might even be considered an outright NDA violation in itself. It depends on the NDA of course, but I don't think this is what WOTC has in mind.

Remember folks (and this is not directed specifically at you Acear), this is a serious playtest, not a "try before you buy" gimmick. They want to improve the game before they publish it, not use the playtest as some sort of marketing strategy.

At least, as far as I know... marketing people are weird. I could be wrong.
They want to improve the game before they publish it, not use the playtest as some sort of marketing strategy.

Or maybe a bit of both and news of the system would certainly get wide when played in a game shop. ;)
Bad side (for business) would be that both good and bad sides would be revealed for all potential buyers.
Here's a question I don't expect people to be able to answer. I play with 2 groups. Should I be blessed with the xerox napkins of 4E, would I be allowed to test with both groups?
Frankly I thing playtesting now would be a mute point considering that you have to have the final product at the printers very shortly to make your release date of May 08. I would like to see some of the character make ups and the character generator along with some of the other items you discussed in your speech avalible now so we can get an idea of just what your doing and if it will be worth investing our money in it or not.
I don't think game shops will work. You have to sign an NDA, and if any of it leaks, you are responsible. A self contained gaming group isn't that bad, but a bunch of people getting involved drastically increases the chances of leakage.

I'm pretty sure WOTC is looking for testers in private little gaming groups. I'd imagine any sort of public testing would be frowned on or might even be considered an outright NDA violation in itself. It depends on the NDA of course, but I don't think this is what WOTC has in mind.

Remember folks (and this is not directed specifically at you Acear), this is a serious playtest, not a "try before you buy" gimmick. They want to improve the game before they publish it, not use the playtest as some sort of marketing strategy.

At least, as far as I know... marketing people are weird. I could be wrong.

Hmm, I really haven't thought about the game shop issue. I guess that it could be done after the game shop closes up. That would prevent passers by getting a glimps in, but you could still NDA the group. On the other hand I could drop the game shop in a heartbeat.

I was on the playtest for Wizkids Mage Knight Dungeon game. So I know how NDA's can go. I even our group suggested to Wizkids how players can attack other players that was finally put into the final rule set. (Although I can't say that we weren't the only ones that solution.)

Basicly my recollections of playtesting was a lot of wash, rinse, repeat, record the results and gather opinions. I'm good with that.
Playtesting: Playtest packets are coming together. I worked a bit yesterday with our Legal folks on the logistics for the NDAs. Suffice it to say that just as in previous playtests, mum's the word from the testers. They don't even admit that they are playtesters. We R&D guys can talk more of course, and we intend to.

I know a lot of folks are waiting for their chance to contribute. It's coming soon, but any estimate I give could be off by +/- two days. So no promises. If you want to be eligible to contribute, assemble a group of six (DM and five players) people who are cool with NDAs and are reliable enough to show up at your table and participate meaningfully.

So here's the latest. Sounds like it's just around the corner.

But yeah, no game shop games. As I assumed, this is going to be pretty hush-hush. WOTC obviously doesn't want to turn away potential players with untested and unfinished rules, and who can blame them?
So here's the latest. Sounds like it's just around the corner.

I've got my group ready, and we're pretty excited. I hope we can get in.
I'm currently reorganizing my gaming group for 4ed testing should we be given the privilege. I hope it's as great as everyone says it's gonna be.
My question is do they all need to sign up for D&D insider in order to participate in the playtest?

I am signed up (DM) but some of my players haven't (they dont generally surf the site like I do). Do I need to strong arm all of them to sign up for D&D Insider?

Thanks,
--AOM
There's a new D&D Podcast that talks about playtesting. It mentions that we're still probably two weeks away, though I might optimistically hope that it wasn't recorded today. Also it reiterates that you need (1) to have a D&DI account, (2) are able to demonstrate that you have a group ready (no idea how you demonstrate), and (3) watch the D&DI page for updates.

I think the idea with (2) is that if they pick you to play, they don't want to hear about any issues of not having a group. I imagine they expect everyone to be able to hit the ground running when they hand out the playtest packets.

So carry on, and good gaming!
I have a DDI account.
My group is ready and eager to start.
I have 10+ years of DMing experience. My 6 members group includes a good mix of players (newbies/oldtimers, male/female, age 10-32, mostly 22-25).
Frankly I thing playtesting now would be a mute point considering that you have to have the final product at the printers very shortly to make your release date of May 08. I would like to see some of the character make ups and the character generator along with some of the other items you discussed in your speech avalible now so we can get an idea of just what your doing and if it will be worth investing our money in it or not.

I think I'll have to agree with you on this.
Though there's abit of time available before going to press, you'd expect all most all of the real playtesting to have been wrapped up at this stage. Afterall, they did claim they'd been working on this for several years....
I'll playtest it if possible, sure, but I won't do so believing my results'll hold much sway. At least not for 4.0 anyways. 4.5 though? Maybe.