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Thread: Dear Mike & Monte
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 10:21 AM #11
Guide (Lvl 11)
I'm not going to go into detail, so here it goes:
-2- Smaller numbers are better. Having +3 to hit should be a *BIG* bonus.
-3- Only hire people to work on 5e who are actively playing the f'ing game!, and have been for at least *10 years*. I'm talking a personal, weekly, "D&D" game (be it BECMI or 4e or anything in between). If they don't have a weekly game going...no. Don't hire them. Just don't.
Those are my key ideas for how to get 5e off on the right foot.
Paul L. Ming
- EN World
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Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 02:04 PM #12
Don't try to compete with video games in areas VGs will always do better than PnP RPGs (balanced tactical combat) but capitalize on things the computer can't do (dynamic worlds which react to the players).
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 02:13 PM #13
The Grand Druid (Lvl 20)
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 02:51 PM #14
Grandmaster of Flowers (Lvl 18)
@Rechan, while I agree that WotC's PR has been notoriously bad, whether through art direction or comments made by designers or just poor communication in general, I would say that if there are really people that are still offended by things designers said about 3E, then that has a lot more to do the psychological make-up of the offended than anything else, and there's simply no pleasing some people.
Gamers tend to be an easily offended lot (just go over to rgp.net, for chrissakes). If someone is still offended about something a game designer said about a game...four years ago, then I don't know what to say. You can't design your PR around people that are that sensitive.
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 02:52 PM #15
Spellbinder (Lvl 16)
On the other, for D&D to expand its base (or even to have credibility with its existing one) I think an outside influence is required. I wish that writers would consult expert opinions more often before writing rules. Talk to medieval and Renaissance historians about historical accuracy. Talk to scientists about describing the physical world. Talk to physicians about how to do a real health system and represent disease and poison. Also, do what Paizo did with the beginner box and test the introductory products on people who haven't played before.
I think a lot of the problems with 4e (and with rpgs in general) arise because they're made in a somewhat cabalistic fashion, with a small group of insiders who have a lot of expertise but not a lot of perspective.
"Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can't Lose"
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 03:09 PM #16
Minor Trickster (Lvl 4)
Mr. Mearls and Mr. Cook, here are my wishes:
1. Wait for a couple of years with the next edition, please do. I am having a lot of fun with 4E as it is. Do not feel pushed or nudged too much by those who have a problem with what 4E is now and want it to be removed. You do not know if they will like the new edition. You do know, however, that I and many others like 4E very very much.
2. Do not "bring the magic back" if that means that a magic user is stronger than a fighter. I wish for balanced classes.
3. I wish for mechanics that can do without certain +x items built into the system. I would like to see magic items with special powers, yes. But my Battlemind should not need a +5 armor or a certain +x-to-attack-feat at a certain level just to be able to compete with a monster.
4. Rely on digital technology to make the game easy to prepare for all players, including the GM. Being able to make characters and monsters in just a couple of minutes is a good thing for me, because I have a job, a family and several other hobbies.
5. I wish for a toolbox of options with a lot of narrative control. For powers I would like to see mechanical crunch, seperated from the power's flavor text that I as a player or a GM can change according to a situation.
I wish for a basic ruleset, with extras added on top, if I like to use them.
6. I wish for online magazines with good campaign arcs, optional locations or encounters that I can drop into my campaign easily and advice on how to apply my character's abilities to the fiction.
7. For the next edition, be legally wise and do not make an OGL. Nothing should last forever, no matter how much you love the current edition. Do not stand still. If you want 3rd party support, make sure they are legally unable to do the Paizo-thing. Because I think, in the end, that was bad for your business.
8. And since this is a pure wish list: Cooperate with WorldWorksGames. They do amazing things and playing with their game supplements enhances the game tremendously.
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 03:47 PM #17
Scout (Lvl 6)
Dear Mike and Monte,
My only wish is that you guys keep making games, even if some people find them unbalanced, unwieldy, too rules-heavy, too rules light, if they find the numbers too big or too small, or whatever else, because there are people out there who will play them and find them fun. They are your Goldilocks, where everything is 'just right.'
Even if I don't get into your game, like I have never tried 4E because the rules changes did not sound appealing, I want you to keep making games because it will hopefully bring new people into the hobby.
Regardless of how much you play-test and ask focus groups and have people from 'outside' critique your work, there will always be people who don't like it. There will always be people who find ways to break your game. There will always be people who want more and people who always want less. No matter how many options you add, there will be someone out there who wants something you didn't think of.
All of this is okay. Just keep making games and options for the games you create. Your Goldilocks' (Goldilockses?) are out there and they will find your game.
Skredli T. Ogre.
Listen to me LIVE at listen.partyfmradio.net at 1 pm Eastern on Fridays and 10 pm Eastern Sundays! PartyFm Radio, where the FUN is just getting started!
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Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 04:23 PM #18
Magsman (Lvl 14)
For the love of God, KEEP the GOOD STUFF from 4e!!!!!!!!
I have been playing a ton of Pathfinder lately, and I can tell you what 5e DOES and DOES NOT NEED:
1 - No Save or Lose spells. I don't want to go to my friend's house to roll a d20 and then spend the rest of the night watching them play D&D because I'm dead, stone, paralyzed, whatever for X rounds (which can translate to hours or more of real time). Keep the 4e save every round mechanic.
2 - Keep the 4e action economy. Playing PF and being able to do essentially one meaningful thing every round since so many actions are Standard, sucks. 4e does this much better with its Standard-Move-Minor setup. Everyone can do multiple meaningful things every round. They can attack but still do things like move, open doors, drink potions, heal, sustain powers, etc.
3 - SELF-CONTAINED MONSTER STAT BLOCKS!!!! - I should never have to look up a spell, power, ability, or item in another book to run a monster. NEVER. 4e got this one right.
4 - No fiddly BS rules for things like grapple, or crit confirmation rolls. Pathfinder did a good job if streamlining things with the whole CMB rules. 4e does an even better job with its simple conditions and its grab mechanic. Its easy, simple, and works well in play.
Bottom line, 4e does about 85% right, build on the foundation of what works. Don't throw out the baby with the bathwater and don't go back to a 3.x baseline.
Where it lost me is that classes feel too rigid and structured, and magic items are too fiddly and don't feel magical. I also don't like that 4e movement powers force you to use minis. I like minis and 4e is the best miniature tactical wargame I have EVER played. But the system needs the flexibility to handle both. Also, I think the roles should be more like templates that can be overlayed onto the classes.
Oh and I like options. Don't oversimplify the game. I like having a fighter with multiple powers to choose from. If Essentials had been 4e when it originally came out, I would have stopped playing D&D altogether. There is a need for Essentials, but core 4e for me is still the game as presented in the PHB1.
Last edited by Dragonblade; Tuesday, 27th December, 2011 at 04:38 PM.
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 04:27 PM #19
Greater Elemental (Lvl 23)
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My main wish is primarily related to the marketing side of things: please engage the online community directly rather than through specific marketing channels and PR companies. In the run-up to 3E, the community engagement was phenomenal - you'd all post on EN World (or Eric Noah's site as it was then), we'd hear directly from the designers, we could grab one for an interview easily without going through a PR company, and we felt like each of you guys were one of us, and we knew you guys. I don't think the current PR regime makes people feel that way.
Sure, sometimes a designer might say something dumb, but so what? Things happen; but (in my personal opinion) I can't help but feel that any problems caused by such things would be more than overwhelmed by the general feeling of goodwill such an approach would engender.
I know there are corporate barriers and scale factors to such things - but you guys did it before, and it worked. Reach out and talk to the gamers, rather than make them come to you - where you could post an article, have a conversation on EN World instead (not that you can't do the former as well). Let it feel less like targeted marketing - although, of course, it is - and more like engagement.
Tuesday, 27th December, 2011, 04:38 PM #20
Magsman (Lvl 14)
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° Ignore Mustrum_Ridcully
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