D&D 4th Edition Convincing 4th Edition players to consider 5th Edition - Page 17





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  1. #161
    Quote Originally Posted by shadow View Post
    However, for me and many people D&D is a role-playing game rather than a tactical miniatures game.
    This line of thinking needs to die.

    In a fire.

    And then be resurrected.

    So it can be burned again.

    Then those ashes need to be dissolved in acid.

    Which is launched into the sun.

    It is an ignorant, dismissive, rude argument.
    "A rock on a stick has a 5' reach unless otherwise specified."

 

  • #162
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    ° Ignore Tony Vargas
    Quote Originally Posted by jsaving View Post
    I agree with all of the design goals cited by the OP.
    I'm not saying you don't, but I feel the need to mention that a common and effective rhetorical device is to begin by agreeing with your opponent in the debate, then refuting everything you just agreed with, point-by-point.

    5e needs to include balanced classes,
    It also needs to offer distinctive classes that don't feel shoehorned into a single bland template,
    I also agree that class balance is important. /Every/ version of D&D has had classes that were quite distinctive, but, the only version of D&D that has ever delivered class balance is the one that put all classes in a consistent mechanical framework.

    The idea that doing so makes the "feel shoehorned into a single bland template," is, because of the choice of the word 'feel,' of course, a matter of opinion or reaction, and not something that can be used as a design guideline, since it's going to be different for everyone. Without the word "feel," of course, the claim that a common mechanical structure is a 'single bland template,' is simply false. If a common mechanical structure rendered everything using it the same, all spells in AD&D, for instance, would be 'the same.'

    a clear and coherent design and purpose,
    a design and purpose that doesn't elevate one portion of the RPG community over another
    That all depends on what you think 'elevating,' means. If you have a clear and coherent /design/, that delivers a balanced game, then, by definition, it doesn't 'elevate' any one play style, since any given character or choice is reasonably balanced. A wealth of meaningful, viable choices ("balance") supports the maximum breadth of styles but /not/ elevating any one of them.

    D&D has, for a long time, catered to some quite specific styles, giving mechanical rewards for 'system mastery' or, before that, for an 'exploration' style of play that emphasized paranoia and planning.

    have teamwork baked into the system,
    have teamwork baked into the system without requiring or favoring the use of miniatures,
    I'm not sure where having teamwork baked (inextricably) into the system is absolutely desirable (there are some very small groups out there, and requiring 3 or 4 or 5 distinct character types to be able to face the full range of challenges would hamper them). Rather, teamwork should be something that the structure of the game facilitates, rather than requires. For instance, making the potential contribution of each class to a team quite clear is helpful in facilitating teamwork. Conversely, having each class able to contribute meaningfully most of the time helps a very small party get by without having a full slate of specialists.

    That shouldn't have anything to do with the use of miniatures, and no extant version of D&D requires the use of minis, let alone makes teamwork impossible without them.

    provide variety in play,
    offer options and variety in customization rather than providing a fixed set of rarely-changed daily/encounter powers
    Variety in play is certainly desirable, it's one aspect of balance - offering meaningful, viable choices in play as well as at chargen/level-up. Certainly, customization is desirable, a class should have choice when built, when it levels up, and in actual play. Furthermore, to maintain class balance, there should be a rough parity in the number and importance of those choices among all classes.

    A common structure for gaining abilities does that, particularly if it discourages, minimizes or even bans taking the same limited-use ability multiple times (as that increases variety in play, /and/ reduces the impact of the inevitable marginally-superior choices).

    offer ease of play,
    and provide ease of play without assuming players can't perform simple mathematics or remember basic details about commonly used spells.
    I don't know why you single out 'spells,' specifically, as any class might have some commonly-used abilities that become familiar in play. But, in any case, even though there is a strong (and perhaps deserved) stereotype of our hobby as appealing to 'nerds' who have a stereotype of being 'good at math,' there are avid gamers who suck at math or for whom a lot of math (or more likely arithmetic) slows or detracts from play. Complexity and simplicity are both, in a sense, desirable - complexity for what it /delivers/ more than in itself, while simplicity is desirable in and of itself. It makes sense to make the game as simple as possible, while retaining balance (lots of meaningful, viable choices) and interest.

    and feature distinctive and interesting monsters.
    And fairly easy to design and run encounters, which means a dependable system for pegging the challenge posed by given monsters.


    Creating a system for those who want simple character sheets, enjoy mini-based tactical combat, and want to "not open a rulebook in a year" (as the OP stated) is great -- that's a community that was clearly underserved in editions past. Creating a system that also serves the needs of those with different preferences is the challenge with which the 5e team is currently confronted, though.
    Indeed. The mandate to try to appeal to all fans of the game is a very high bar that WotC as set itself. Particularly, as segments of the fan base have defined themselves by edition, and gotten caught up in the specifics of their favored edition, both good and bad. Insisting on the bad parts of a favorite ed and demanding the scrapping of the good parts of a dis-favored one, will get in the way of a functional 5e that could be both balanced, and appeal to everyone. Teasing out the genuinely-good, vs the merely familiar, and the genuinely-bad vs the merely novel, would give us a better picture of what 5e needs to be.

    Getting there would require some introspection, something that's tough, and not exactly what anyone wants to engage in over a mere hobby. So, my guess would be that 5e will fail, because, while it /could/ lift the best aspects of each edition and create a superior game, it probably (a) /won't/ as it pendulum-swings away from the best aspects of the latest editions (3e & 4e, that is) and (b) be rejected for excluding the /worst/ of any edition, because flaws are as precious as features to the committed edition-specific fan.
    Last edited by Tony Vargas; Monday, 2nd July, 2012 at 10:00 PM.

  • #163
    Quote Originally Posted by Patryn of Elvenshae View Post
    This line of thinking needs to die.

    In a fire.

    And then be resurrected.

    So it can be burned again.

    Then those ashes need to be dissolved in acid.

    Which is launched into the sun.

    It is an ignorant, dismissive, rude argument.
    I do understand the concern, but I think what folks are trying to say is they find a game like 4e (or even 3e) with its focus on the grid and tactics to be disrupted to their sense of immersion in the game (and therefor rp). Some people might have the opposite reaction. But to say peope shouldn't voice the complaint because you disagree is equally dismissive.
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  • #164
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    ° Ignore Tony Vargas
    Quote Originally Posted by Neonchameleon View Post
    Balance - Power

    Power balance is a huge thing in 4e but there are fundamentally two rules that need to be kept to for a system to be sufficiently balanced.

    • Each class needs to be the best at something
    • What each class is best at should come up regularly and not be made irrelevant


    Part 1 means that if we have a class called ôfighterö then that class must be the best at fighting. It should not be possible to switch them out for a cleric without anyone noticing much of a difference.
    I have to take issue with this as a 4e thing. 4e Fighters are awesome, and they are certainly a candidate for 'best defender' (though any such title is marginal at best in relatively well-balanced 4e), but they're hardly "the best at fighting." The Ranger attacks more often, the Rogue hits more often, the Paladin has higher defenses and more surges, and so forth. Every class is good at 'fighting,' particularly if you stretch the meaning to 'good at combat.'

    That's how 4e delivered balance that actually works consistently - as far as it goes.

    "Each class is best at something" is the serial or 'spotlight' balance of classic D&D - and isn't really balance, at all. It's just very inconsistent imbalance.

    Where 5e could improve balance is by taking class balance into the other two 'pillars.' Everyone's viable in combat, everyone needs to be viable out of combat, too.

  • #165
    Quote Originally Posted by Bedrockgames View Post
    I do understand the concern, but I think what folks are trying to say is they find a game like 4e (or even 3e) with its focus on the grid and tactics to be disrupted to their sense of immersion in the game (and therefor rp).
    Might I humbly suggest, then, that they say this*, instead of the old saw about 4E (usually, and 3E, less so) being a tactical miniatures game and not a roleplaying game?

    The first is a statement of position. The second is an insult. And, yes, needs to die in a fire.

    * IF, in fact, it's the argument they want to make - I suspect in some, if not many, cases, it is not.
    Last edited by Patryn of Elvenshae; Monday, 2nd July, 2012 at 10:12 PM.
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  • #166
    Quote Originally Posted by Bedrockgames View Post
    I do understand the concern, but I think what folks are trying to say is they find a game like 4e (or even 3e) with its focus on the grid and tactics to be disrupted to their sense of immersion in the game (and therefor rp). Some people might have the opposite reaction. But to say peope shouldn't voice the complaint because you disagree is equally dismissive.
    I tried to xp you but couldn't... but yeah, this right here.

    On a side note... I have noticed that it can be hard to downright impossible to get fans of 4e to accept that for some (in the same way some people don't enjoy chess) 4e's (and to a much lesser extent 3e's) focus on grid-based, tactical combat isn't fun for them... it doesn't make the game more interesting and it monopolizes way too much of the game time to only be a single facet of what D&D is usually about. IMO, 4e really does force too much time to be spent on combat (especially at low levels) with a standard encounter compared to other activities (exploration/problem solving/acting/etc.) in the game.

    These activities, ironically enough, that define the fun particular player types enjoy the most, are recognized and listed in the 4e DMG.
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  • #167
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    ° Ignore Fifth Element
    Quote Originally Posted by Bedrockgames View Post
    I do understand the concern, but I think what folks are trying to say is they find a game like 4e (or even 3e) with its focus on the grid and tactics to be disrupted to their sense of immersion in the game (and therefor rp). Some people might have the opposite reaction. But to say peope shouldn't voice the complaint because you disagree is equally dismissive.
    That's not what was said. Patryn was responding to a statement that 4E is not an RPG but a tactical battle game. You might read it this way, and that might actually be the way the writer intended it, but if so the phrasing was deplorable.

    The response was to what was said, not what you might think the writer probably meant by it. If that it what was meant, there are (obviously, as you've done it above) ways to say it without being insulting.

    If you (general you, not specific you) just say what you mean instead of using throw-away phrases that are known to cause offence to many people, these sorts of exchanges would be avoided.

  • #168
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    ° Ignore Shadeydm
    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Vargas View Post
    I have to take issue with this as a 4e thing. 4e Fighters are awesome, and they are certainly a candidate for 'best defender' (though any such title is marginal at best in relatively well-balanced 4e).
    After playing a shielding swordmage from level 1 to mid teens and currently playing a level 11 fighter I find the fighter to be a poor defender by comparison. FWIW
    Last edited by Shadeydm; Monday, 2nd July, 2012 at 10:26 PM.
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  • #169
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    Quote Originally Posted by Imaro View Post
    On a side note... I have noticed that it can be hard to downright impossible to get fans of 4e to accept that for some (in the same way some people don't enjoy chess) 4e's (and to a much lesser extent 3e's) focus on grid-based, tactical combat isn't fun for them...
    See above...that's not what was said.

    Not, "I don't enjoy tactical combat" but "4E is not an RPG".

    See the difference?

    This whole part of the discussion is off-topic, of course. A thread about how 4E players could be convinced to consider 5E has become yet another thread where people talk about how much they don't like 4E. That's not relevant, because the thread is supposed to be about people who do enjoy 4E.

  • #170
    Quote Originally Posted by Imaro View Post
    I tried to xp you but couldn't... but yeah, this right here.

    On a side note... I have noticed that it can be hard to downright impossible to get fans of 4e to accept that for some (in the same way some people don't enjoy chess) 4e's (and to a much lesser extent 3e's) focus on grid-based, tactical combat isn't fun for them...
    Here's where you demonstrate that you just do not understand the argument.

    You have failed to understand for, as near as I can tell, years now, so I don't hope that a lightbulb will suddenly go on with my post, but here goes, once again, the triumph of hope over experience:

    I understand that some people do not like tactical miniatures-based combat rules in their RPG. They do not find them fun. I am completely and totally okay with this.

    De gustibus non disputandem.

    I do not particularly enjoy heavily operational dungeon crawls. I think the minutiae of time and resource tracking take away from what I enjoy in my roleplaying.

    I also do not particularly enjoy heavily scripted, "railroady" adventures, where the DM knows ahead of time almost everything that's going to happen. I want my choices to matter, not just in the niggling details, but in the broad strokes, as well.

    However, there are people out there - including posters on these very boards - who do like both of these styles.

    Unlike a certain crowd, I can state that I do not like these particular styles of play, and even discuss why I do not like them, without resorting to telling these people that they are not playing an RPG - an insulting and dismissive argument that seeks to elevate my own preferences to the status of "real" RPG, while those who like something else are playing a lesser game.

    That is the fundamental difference between my POV and the "4E isn't an RPG, it's just a tactical miniatures game" crowd. I can disagree with and chat about preferences politely.

    We should not accord the same forebearance to what are essentially insults.
    "A rock on a stick has a 5' reach unless otherwise specified."

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