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





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  1. #41
    One man's 'objectivity' is seemingly another man's definition of bigotry I am sad to say.

    Let's not start levelling bigotry charges, please - Plane Sailing, ENworld admin
    Last edited by Plane Sailing; Sunday, 1st July, 2012 at 11:52 PM.

 

  • #42
    Quote Originally Posted by Li Shenron View Post
    Nice post, but the problem for me is that of those points above, some of them I don't care or I don't agree with, and the others I do but they have nothing to do with 4e specifically (not in the sense that 4e doesn't satisfy them, but you don't necessarily to have a game work like 4e in order to satisfy them).

    The biggest thing here I don't agree with is the concept of balance. Even tho once I wasn't of this opinion, today I simply disagree that all characters should have something to do and be useful in every single situation. I don't even think that every class needs to be good in combat, to me a game where the Fighter is excellent in combat, a couple of other classes are moderately useful and the rest are useless, can still be a very good RPG, and in my twisted mind probably a better RPG. Clearly, such design target would not make a good miniature combat game, so the question here is what kind of game D&D should be.
    You know what? It doesn't really matter if you individually don't care for balance. This isn't about trying to convince you that balance is good, this thread is a statement that it is a critically important element for a very large section of 5E's potential customer base.

    In absence of exact figures, let's assume that half of all current potential D&D fans predominantly play 4E, while the other half generally don't like 4E and instead play games such as Pathfinder or retro-clones. If this is true, then any attempt to unify the split D&D fanbase needs to appeal in equal measure to 4E fans, non-4E fans, and people who have never even played D&D before.

    Saying that you personally don't like balance is pretty meaningless in a thread that is citing what is important for literally at least half of 5E's potential playerbase.

    If WotC just wanted to make a game that appealed just to you and other people who don't like 4E and what it did, it might be okay for them to ignore balance. But then it wouldn't really be an attempt to unify the split player-base, and they would lose the money and support of all those 4E-fans. I seriously doubt that if they lose the 4E-fanbase, the people who are actually giving them money right now, they would end up with the larger player-base they are so desperate for. Since if there is a roughly even split between Pathfinder fans and 4E fans, then they would be, at best, just trading one fanbase for the other, not making any net-gain in customers. In all likelihood, it could end up with an even smaller player-base than what 4E currently possesses.

    There needs to be some concessions made to win 4E fans over, and despite what some people here seem to think, there is very little of 4E in what I have seen of D&D Next. If WotC doesn't try to win 4E fans over, than the "unified edition" will just end up being a lie.

    Edit: Thinking about it, maybe I should clarify my position. It's okay to not like balance, but if you actually want a united fanbase and to play in the same edition with them again, you are going to need to suck it up and put up with balance in your D&D. If you don't want a united fanbase, then at least be honest about it.
    Last edited by SKyOdin; Sunday, 1st July, 2012 at 04:29 PM.

  • #43
    Quote Originally Posted by TrippyHippy View Post
    One man's 'objectivity' is seemingly another man's definition of bigotry I am sad to say.
    A game can be objectively badly designed the same way that an advertisement can be objectively ineffective, that a meal can be objectively disgusting, or that being stabbed in the eye with a sharp stick can be objectively unpleasant. They all rely on feelings, but that doesn't mean they're subjective in any meaningful sense.

    And seriously, if you're going to call disliking poor game design bigotry, I'm going to call your complaint about it genocide. Why turn this dial to 11 when we can turn it to 12?

  • #44
    Anyone foolish enough to assert his preference as 'objectively' better than someone elses, needs to be called on it. Anybody who then compares dissent with 'genocide' speaks volumes for the validity of his views.

  • #45
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    I mean "objectively" worse in the literal sense. It isn't a matter of perspective. Games have design goals, and how well they accomplish them can be objectively evaluated.
    What if the design goal is "fighter is stronger at low levels and wizard is stronger at high levels"?

  • #46
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    Game A:
    In Game A, all classes can contribute reasonably well in all situations. They contribute in slightly different ways, perhaps, but they all contribute. Now sometimes the way they contribute starts getting a bit similar. For example, a fighter and a rogue both contribute to fights by stabbing things in slightly different ways.

    Game B: Not all characters contribute equally in all situations. For example, there is a class that is the best at fighting. There is another class that has more non-combat skills than anyone else. There's a class who's whole shtick is that he's got spells that are better than anything anyone else does, but can't be used very often... and when he can't use spells, he's worse than everyone else. That's the system.

    Game B is an OBJECTIVELY worse system
    Well, I was going to define "objectively" so I could say you may need to reword things, but you went on to say:
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    I mean "objectively" worse in the literal sense. It isn't a matter of perspective. Games have design goals, and how well they accomplish them can be objectively evaluated.
    Okay, so we're weighing it against goals. What is the goal of Game B? Verisimilitude? Good stories? Well, maybe to some (large) degree at times, but I think you hit on it pretty directly:
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    Games that do that aren't fun for the guy who gets knocked out.
    You said it: fun. Fun is probably the ultimate goal. Can you objectively define what is "fun" for me? I mean, not the definition of "fun", but what makes something Fun. Hmm, maybe you can, since you go on to say:
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    They lead to bad feelings between the players, and miserable evenings.
    So, that's not Fun. Okay... what if it doesn't lead to bad feelings between the players, or a miserable evening? What if a group can play with Game B and, despite how your group feels about it, actually have Fun with it? What if they have more Fun with it than they did with Game A? Is Game A now objectively worse than Game B? Or, perhaps, is a measure of how Fun something is actually subjective, and not objective?
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    Similarly, if you have a game who's design goals are apparently to let a group of friends collectively roleplay four to five heroic fantasy characters, and relative to the time spent at the table for any given task what you really create is a game in which one heroic fantasy character is awesome, and his four henchmen kind of help out... you've failed. Objectively.
    Okay, but what if people that like Game B don't have those design goals? What if a group of players can have Fun being one powerful guy and four not-as-powerful guys? And, more importantly, what makes you think that Fun isn't the primary goal of either Game A or Game B, and that all other goals take a backseat to it? Or, for that matter, that Game B is has the "five balanced heroic characters story" design goal?
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    D&D needs to be Lord of the Rings, where Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas all matter. Not Xena, where everybody knows that in terms of screen time doing cool things, Xena > Gabriella > ... .. .. .. .. > Joxter.
    What if Lord of the Rings isn't Fun for the people who like Game B (personally, I'd say Lord of the Rings, taken as a whole with all the main characters, is probably closer to Game B, where you have Gandolf and Pippin in the same party [and let's not get sidetracked with the whole GMPC thing])? Again, does this mean that Game A has objectively failed, even if people do have Fun with Game A?

    At any rate, again, I like balance. I prefer it, and I'd rather see the game balanced from the beginning, with mods that can upset that, rather than an unbalanced game that you try to balance via mods. That's my preference. But, trying to objectively define Fun (or trying to define the design goals of 5e as creating a heroic fantasy story for five balanced people rather than being Fun) is probably more than a little off. It's not objective, if nothing else. As always, play what you like
    As always, play what you like

  • #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    Game B is an OBJECTIVELY worse system unless the following is true:

    ...

    I mean "objectively" worse in the literal sense. It isn't a matter of perspective. Games have design goals, and how well they accomplish them can be objectively evaluated.
    You're kind of wasting your time... What you're saying here is that game B is "objectively" worse only with respect to such design goal.

    I am saying that I disagree with the design goal based on "everybody good all the time".

    That is a matter of perspective, it has to do with what I want from the game, and therefore it is ultimately the most important thing when I have to choose between game A or game B.

    So for me you can make the best Game A ever, but I would probably still not be interested. It was not what I was looking for and enjoyed in OD&D, AD&D and 3ed, and it won't be what I'll be looking for in 5ed.
    "There is no survival without order, there is no evolution without chaos."
    "You have to see past the RAW to understand the rules of the game."
    "And rules are OVERRATED by the way!

  • #48
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadfan View Post
    A game can be objectively badly designed the same way that an advertisement can be objectively ineffective, that a meal can be objectively disgusting, or that being stabbed in the eye with a sharp stick can be objectively unpleasant. They all rely on feelings, but that doesn't mean they're subjective in any meaningful sense.

    And seriously, if you're going to call disliking poor game design bigotry, I'm going to call your complaint about it genocide. Why turn this dial to 11 when we can turn it to 12?
    A game can fail to meet design or sales goals. Whether it is badly designed is largely a subjective call. I am not saying consensus isn't important. If 80 percent of the the people who play it say it moves slow despite claiming to be a fast and furious game, that is kind of like 80 percent of moviegoers finding a filim dull. But you are describing two design approaches that split pretty evenly in terms of preference in the gaming communi and then say one of them is objectivley bad (unless it meets a couple of absolute parity criteria, which doesn't make much sense because usually people interested in option B are not interested in oure parity).

    Balancing power at each point in the game and making sure everyone at the table stays in and has something to do at every point is one approach. It is entirely valid and some people find it very fun. Others don't find it fun at all. Some of us find games that allow for moments of disparity and don't ration spotlight to be much more enjoyable. There is nothing objectivly in the design of a game that achieves fun in this way.
    http://www.rpgnow.com/product/131611/Sertorius

  • #49
    Quote Originally Posted by Li Shenron View Post
    You're kind of wasting your time... What you're saying here is that game B is "objectively" worse only with respect to such design goal.

    I am saying that I disagree with the design goal based on "everybody good all the time".

    That is a matter of perspective, it has to do with what I want from the game, and therefore it is ultimately the most important thing when I have to choose between game A or game B.

    So for me you can make the best Game A ever, but I would probably still not be interested. It was not what I was looking for and enjoyed in OD&D, AD&D and 3ed, and it won't be what I'll be looking for in 5ed.
    No. You didn't understand my post at all. The "game B" definitely DID NOT have the design goal of "everybody good all the time." That's why I wrote this:
    Game B is an OBJECTIVELY worse system unless the following is true:
    And then spent the rest of my post expanding on that part.

    Which apparently no one read.

    I don't know what else to say except to refer you back to my original post, where I took Game B, a game explicitly designed to NOT have everyone be equally powerful all the time, a game explicitly designed to NOT have the design goal you thought I was evaluating it with respect to, and discussed other design decisions that would need to be worked into the game in order to make varying power levels at varying times a functional concept that doesn't leave players sitting at the table like vestigial extras, eating Cheetos and doing nothing important or meaningful, for hours and hours of gameplay each night.

  • #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKyOdin View Post
    Edit: Thinking about it, maybe I should clarify my position. It's okay to not like balance, but if you actually want a united fanbase and to play in the same edition with them again, you are going to need to suck it up and put up with balance in your D&D. If you don't want a united fanbase, then at least be honest about it.
    How about trying to think about a generalized concept of balance?

    If uniting a fanbase is the purpose, then they must struggle to find a higher concept of balance that includes your idea and my idea of it as special cases. I think the difference is between a concept of the game where everyone shares the spotlight all the time, and another concept where everyone shares the spotlight across an adventure but not necessarily at the same time. I'm not saying that it is certainly possible to achieve both in the same system.
    "There is no survival without order, there is no evolution without chaos."
    "You have to see past the RAW to understand the rules of the game."
    "And rules are OVERRATED by the way!

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