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Monday, 28th May, 2012, 03:06 AM #1
Hydra (Lvl 25)
Mike Mearls Discusses the First Round of Public D&D Next Playtests
WotC's Mike Mearls discusses the first round of D&D Next public playtests in this article, delving into some of the design decisions and future directions.
He touches on each of the pre-generated characters, and many of the mechanics in the "How to Play" documents - such as advantage/disadvantage, contests, movement, stealth, and more. One part of that is a widely asked question in the forums: why do the weapons in the equipment section not match the damage entries on the character sheets? Turns out that's not a mistake: it's because races can have an affinity for weapons which changes the base damage. He also suggests trying a few alternatives:
- Give the fighter an additional theme (the cleric's guardian theme)
- Play with or without themes and/or backgrounds while also removing Hit Dice
As a reminder, if you haven't signed up yet for the public playtest, click here for full instructions.
Last edited by Morrus; Wednesday, 6th June, 2012 at 11:28 AM.
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 06:17 AM #2
Lama (Lvl 13)
L&L 5/28 - Playtest: First Round Overview
Article is here.
I'd say it clears up a few discussion points 'round heah.
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 06:29 AM #3
Grandmaster of Flowers (Lvl 18)
Racial weapon bonuses?
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 06:30 AM #4
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
It certainly made some things clearer for me. I like most of what I see with the play test docs, and this column, but I haven't commented not them much because I haven't had a chance to play yet.
I really wish they would have explained the changes to those weapon dies in the actual documentsŚit would have saved me from reading at least 40 posts pointing the discrepancies out.
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 06:44 AM #5
Spellbinder (Lvl 16)
It's cool how one dwarven race increases your damage dice, and the other one increases your hit dice. I'll have to see the character creation rules to see if it works ("works" = I don't feel like I'm forced to pick dwarf whenever I make a martial character).
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 06:55 AM #6
Magsman (Lvl 14)
Genetic knowledge grates on my nerves something fierce unless it's a race that actually has genetic knowledge as part of its concept, and it had better only apply to knowledge it has access from the past. Stonecunning, for example, gives a dwarf access to genetic knowledge that is impossible for them to know unless there's some kind of secondary divination magic behind it.
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 07:14 AM #7
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
In-game, Dwarves actually were created by their Dwarf-god and imbued with Dwarf-like characteristics.
To me, those sort of little details give the setting verisimilitude. I can understand why real-life races don't essentially unerringly adhere to stereotypes. But if we were actually created by a god who thought bows were awesome than we'd most likely have instilled in us awesomeness with bows, while the weird people two continents over who were created by the God of trees would similarly be imbued with incredible tree climbing skills.
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 07:30 AM #8
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)
I guess this means that halflings get a die increase for daggers. That'll help keep their damage on par with Medium rogues, even if it is just a point on average. I guess medium rogues will want to stick with short swords, at least until we see what can justify rapiers costing twice as much as short swords.
I am curious to see the gnome. I'm hoping that they don't fall back on that hooked hammer thing that no one I've played with has ever used. Actually, I take that back. I used one on my gnome rogue. But she used it as a tool for tomb-delving and not as a weapon.
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 07:45 AM #9
Magsman (Lvl 14)
I have always wished that racial mods were split into cultural and inherent mods. So you could mix and match to get a dwarf brought up amongst humans. Thus you would have
Race + Culture + Background (mundane job) + Theme (adventuring style)
Has been doable using a bit of fudge for ages but I would still like it to be the base line
Monday, 28th May, 2012, 08:01 AM #10
Grandfather of Assassins (Lvl 19)
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Background and Theme providing equipment... that's a cool way of doing starting gear, so long as we still have the option to customize gear.
Not sure I like the idea of racial weapon boosts. I've got a feeling that will backfire into locking characters into certain weapons, even with it generally being a small advantage. I'd rather they got automatic proficiency but no boost like a bonus to hit and especially damage.
DM: "Why is your dwarf cleric holding an axe? Aren't clerics of Moradin more well known for wielding hammers - the tool of a smith?"
Player: "Because I don't get a damage bump with a hammer - or a mace."
Also, don't like the spell formatting. As far back as I can remember, there's always been some sort of stat block for a spell's basic information - school, range, area, components, etc.
The other things mentioned haven't even raised an eyebrow as I read through the docs, so I'm neutral on them.
Good God, the whiners in the comments. Which one of the designers kicked their dog?
I myself am somewhat hesitant about what I've seen and read, but I'm rather shocked that the 4E'ers feel so excluded. The playtest strikes me as a 4E skeleton with OD&D language at the moment. As a bit of a grognard (I missed OD&D, but have played all other versions), so far I'm not feeling like D&DNext is speaking to me entirely.
I wonder if, as a compromise edition (as in committee-made), 5E will end up pleasing no one.
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