Saturday, November 3, 2012, 2:15 AM
So, finally recovered from Halloween...
Prominent reminder that I am not as young as I once was...
And now I get to crack open a new playtest.
My knee, it spasms.
Well, we let that pass before posting.
Rather than rage, I'm going to note that this playtest actually addressed several of my issues.
1st We have some modularity. Specificly in the healing department. I'm not exactly satisfied with where it is at the moment, but I do very much like the direction it is going in.
2nd Dwarven poison immunity, and all it's baggage is gone, replaced with resistnce/advantage. I appreciate that greatly.
3rd The Rogue has more options, mind you they need some bolstering as they are on the weaker side, but expertise dice seem a natural fit as the "martial" answer to spells.
The L&L that accompanied this packet is very telling. www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4...
The part that got me the most was: First, a confession. I'm thinking about, playing, and reviewing material that's a couple of packets ahead of you. Being ahead like this makes it fairly strange to go back and look at what's going out in the playtest packet.
I'm not exactly comfortable with this.
To me it indicates that development is moving forward absent feedback. This worries me... it is almost insulting, in that it implies a devaluation of feedback. However, there is also the possibility that these other packets address specifc issues that our feedback will not relate to on the current packet...
Which brings me to my crux.
What, specificly, are we focusing on with this packet. It seems a pretty wide reboot and almost unfocused. We have a very large amount that changed, and some of it affects the others. This was a very divisive packet, and the read me first was good, but I would have requested a little more content there to give us a but more of the why to go with the what. As he mentions in the article, Healing ties in with HP, and Monster lethality... widgetting with lots of variables at once can be disoreinting. Also, weren't we getting some alternate casting modules soon?
Saturday, October 20, 2012, 2:24 AM
Right, so, there are several threads that, by name and intent, seem matters I would like to discuss. However, by page 2 or 3, I realize that no good will come of it. Either the environ is too caustic, I am too vitriolic, or the thread has degenerated into a tired arguement that will go nowhere worth seeing.
I don't have poster fatique. However, I do have a stomach condition.
I also try to have a care for the other people on this forum. If I can't make a meaningful contribution (and I do consider humour a very meaningful contribution) I try to avoid posting.
Thursday, October 11, 2012, 1:28 AM
Right, so (I start many of my texted thoughts this way) regarding some of my hang-ups.
I spent some time in the military. It was not pleasant.
I was witness to acts of great heroism and sacrifice. I also bore witness to acts of absolute atrocity. For better and worse, I saw the asumed boundaries of human physicallity, will, and restraint shattered.
Realistic has become almost a fallacy to me.
Simply put, what is assumed to be realistic is routinely exceeded in the "real world". The impossible has largely been replaced with improbable. What is a realistic expectation for one who has never felt adrenaline burn in their veins, is naive. Just as what is considered realistic standards of humanity from someone who has never come just moments too late upon a scene of ethnic cleansing is ( and they so rarely understand what a blessing this is) uninformed and privileged.
I game, for a plurality of reasons.
However, there are certain areas that I feel games don't need to make rules for. Most of these are Roleplaying related. I don't need a rule set to tell me when my character should be disgusted, or elated, or aroused. To be sure, there are magical effects that can usurp free will, but those are the exception, rather than the rule. Emotional integrity is a very personal thing. Nothing breaks character concept like having feelings, and more importantly, reactions to those feelings, commondeered by a rule set. Certainly we can wave of mind-control as not our own reactions, but when there are rolls to see if you find someone attractive, and then if you feel ashamed about it, or if you lose bowel control after a threat, it intrudes far too much for my tastes.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012, 2:39 AM
I'm very very cautious about "them" providing background and flavour after the Wartlock and Were-Dragon, but elation conspires to overthrow reason...
Modularity for casting, Tralu Tralay!
You can have (what you call) Vancian, and you over there, have some A/E/D!
Mayhaps some slots and spell points to go around, and the buffet now has something for everyone.
My headaches, but the brick wall is apparently crumbling and the tooth is wiggling free.
Tuesday, September 25, 2012, 2:34 AM
I rarely get to play in D&D games. I usually end up running them. My only option is organized play because my players are either afraid of the screen, or don't wnat to run D&D for thematic or mechanical reasons. However, that's hardly my point here.
The point is, I'm the local DM for three groups. Some of my players are about my age or older, and cut teeth on AD&D. Others are significantly younger and are either very late 3/Pathfinder or 4E joiners. One of my fellow 30 somethings just started gaming recently with 4E.
None of them have much faith in WotC/Hasbro.
I could cite a laundry list of reasons for this, but that's neither here nor there... yet.
It falls to me to sell DDN to them. Without them, I cannot playtest. Without them I am sorta useless to this whole process. So far they have sat by me at the table and ran with this. We even were in danger of having fun at a few points. But those points are few and far between. If the next playtest doesn't deliver something more in line with their interests, some will walk. I may even hold back on who I ask to help playtest, just so they can cool down.
D&D isn't the only game in town, and they feel insulted by the articles and interviews I link them to." D&D for everyone, except us". Yet they aren't the only ones who feel this way. Every time a dev makes a comment that what people are complaining about is trivial, or give people a blue raincoat or green umbrella when they asked for a green raincoat, and then pretend they addressed the issue, it erodes support more. Case in point:
"There is one final issue to touch on that I think does a good job of showcasing how we work with playtest feedback: Players consistently feel that their characters don’t have enough hit points. The feedback about number of hit points was overwhelmingly clear for the wizard."
"In the case of hit points, we aren’t going to do anything other than give the wizard a boost (the wizard far and away came up the most in the data and in comments). Personally, I think the issue relates more to how much healing the characters have, how dangerous the monsters feel, and the overall level of tension in the game."
No. Bad. this is not how to react to playtest. Stop demeaning the people you are asking for feddback from.
You hand waved it off because it doesn't fit your ideal of high risk adventuring.
Instead, you assume we are too stupid to know what we are asking for.
If you're just making this game for yourself, stop bothering us and I can stop bothering my players.
If this negligence is a good job of showcasing your Feedback usage, why bother?
It's like pulling teeth, getting my playeres to sit for a playtest after face slaps like that.
Tuesday, August 28, 2012, 2:30 AM
Caveat lector, this is a vitriol fueled rant.
Okay, so with the new playtest, we are still focusing on the basics, the real meat and potatoes of D&D, that's why we have only 4 races. That's why we have 4 classes, and two glued on to shut up the people who are sick of Spell Slot (misnamed Vancian) magic as the only deal in town.
We've got the Tolkien tribute band of Human (on center stage) with support crew in the Demi-humans, Dwarf, Elf and Hob- er Halfling as the only race choices in town, and the only ones considered "CORE" tm from on high. As though anyone at home needs that distinction. It was even in the same seminar they talk about each DM deciding their own core... which is not to be confused WotC "CORE"tm.
We've got an armour list that sees the return of the fictitious armours that Victorian pseudo-scholars invented because they were too lazy to actually research any history that was not accessible from their armchairs. Can't be bothered to include Brigandine or Lamellar, but we have Studded Leather, Banded and Splint. Atleast the two handed Falchion hasn't reared it's ugly head yet. That isn't an invitation.
However, we now have the Katana?
Seriously, can't be bothered to touch anything that isn't Tolkien or BECMI, without having your teeth pulled, but you offer us the Katana?
There isn't anything else in the game as it exists to explain it's presence.
No Lamellar, no O-yori, no Oni, no Samurai, no Kenku, nothing.
Where in the blazes did this come from?
Did I miss when they stated DDN Drow are Ipponese?
Is there an island that some Halflings come from that for some reason focuses on differential tempering of swords?
Is it a Dwarven joke?
Of all the random offal to drop in, while people are clamouring for more races or more robust healing rules, there is time to drop a context free Katana?
Get back to working on making the core rules work and show me some significant modularity that you keep promising.
Tuesday, August 21, 2012, 2:29 AM
Right, so, we are still very early in playtest. However, the playtest does not exist in a vacuum. There are also seminars and convention tables, ect...
Let's back up a little.
I like a lot of the conceptual ideas I've seen in D&DNext. The new things it brings to the table inspire me.
Codification and Recognition of the Three Pillars of Combat, Exploration and Interaction give me, conceptually, a good axis for building adventures and characters around.
Advantage/Disadvantage makes me happy. It feels significant and simple.
All abilities tied to a defense makes me cautiously optomistic.
Modularity to allow plug and play components for the type of game you like best is pure glee for me.
Expertise dice seem promising, if they are developed.
The problem is... that seems to be all that's new.
The rest is a constantly shift amalgam of bits from previous games, and not always the good parts. Parts that seem to be prime candidates for modularity, are instead presented as etched in stone (still early for a playtest, but it's not early if you listen to con panels). The game wants to be recognizable and enjoyable for anyone who has ever played D&D before, no matter which edition, and yet there is a near religious obsession with Core and Iconic. These are, sadly, incompatible. What was core and iconic for one edition or the other might seem alien to those who haven't played it. Free (cherry picking) multiclassing? Great if you loved 3X, inconcievable for all other editions. Spell Slot casting? You've lost the 4rries at the door. Healing that doesn't involve magic? WTF says everyone from before 4E. Rolled stats? Enough Hp to survive a House Cat attack? Single encounter adventure day and PC infant mortality rates in the high double digits. These, and many more, are all points of contention amongst the many editions. Thus, they are prime candidates for modularity. Yet, their presentation does not indicate modularity, and neither do the panels and posts.
Presentation is lacking.
I have to sell this game to my gaming group. D&D isn't the only game in town. It isn't the only Fantasy Game in town either. I have players who detest everything to do with 4E, by the same token, one of my groups considers 3X to be the Anti-Gygax. I know it's early, but you've stopped supporting 4E already, I need something to keep my players, your customers, interested. Throw me a bone, show me some modularity. Right now, they both are seething at it. They also want some new races (not just sub races) to go with their new Classes. I can keep them calm on that for a little while, but none of them are interested in a Middle Earth RPG, so we will require something Tolkien didn't codify over half a century ago, before I can get them to the FLGS.
I understand it is tough. It's a hard job, trying to please everybody... and so easy to, instead, please nobody. Just a few friendly pointers.
Don't reduce a commodity to address complaints at a lack of the ability to restore that commodity. You are still shorting the commodity.
Don't tell me I can have a Green Rain-coat and then give me a Green Umbrella. I want the rain coat, I want it in Green, I don't care if the Umbrella will keep me dry, it isn't what I asked for.
When making public statements, focus on internal consistency. D&D for everyone is becoming a hollow slogan. When Ford said everyone can have a car in their favourite colour, so long as that favourite colour was black, it was clever. That's because it was the first time, and he was the only real affordable vehicle manufacturer in town. It is no longer the first time (that was near to a century ago). You are not the only game in town, and you are not the most affordable.
You begin a seminar with the D&D for all D&D players, and then waste little time in deciding for us all what is iconic and what isn't. It may be unintetnional, but presentation is a large part of marketting, and you are pitching an unfinished product which becomes more divisive with each iteration.
You have great ideas, showcase them. Show use modular. Even if it is unfinished. We are Playtesting, many of us actually realize that. It would be a coup. People could stop bickering about how they are getting shunted out into the cold, and foucs on the aspects they like and work to improve them.
Sunday, June 24, 2012, 12:58 AM
Right, so I'm not actually a Tarsier.
Now that I've cleared that up, a bit more about me in relation to this forum.
I started playing D&D in the early 90's.
I also play frequently or have played significantly 7th Sea, Legend of the Five Rings, Savage Worlds, Call of C'thulhu, Fading Suns, Numerous World of Darkness games, Exalted, and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen
I've lurked here for years.
My tone and intent can range from curious to condescending with little warning (online) of which it is.
I would apologize, but I'm not actually remorseful, have no intention of curbing the behaviour, and do so ever much hate lying.
My persona in the waking world is not really the concern of anyone here, but if you think otherwise, feel free to ask directly and discretely.
I have an answer, it may even be the truth.