Confessions of a 4E Detractor

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
01-08-14: I was about to post a long and exhausting rant over in the D&D Next forum about the upcoming release, and then I realized it was all starting to sound familiar. Then I remembered this post that I wrote back in 2008, and decided to follow my own advice.

01-05-23: The more things change, the more they stay the same, hay? Another new edition, another announcement about the gaming license, more calls for boycotting. -sigh.

====================================================

Forked from: 4E is unacceptable

Okay, I've been acting like a jerk. I would like to apologize, and I would like to clear the air about my sentiments toward (or against, rather) 4th Edition.

I know where the OP is coming from (although he probably needs to switch to decaf.) When 4E was announced, I was pretty excited about it. My interest grew or diminished with each new press release; there were things that I really liked (the new skill system, the way that two-weapon fighting was done) and there were things that I really didn't (dragonborn, healing surges), but for the most part I tried to remain optimistic...I tried to develop some houserules, I contributed to a fan-written 4E adventure, I pre-ordered the books, I downloaded and played the "4E Lite" compilation. And so on.

In the days leading up to their release, it seemed like the bad news was starting to outweigh the good. I started posting little rants and tirades about what I didn't like (though I hope they weren't as corrosive as the one this thread forked from.) I don't know why I did that. Maybe I thought I could change it, maybe I thought someone would explain it to me in a way that would change my mind. (Maybe I was just mad and felt like fighting? I can get that way sometimes.)

When the books were released, well, I sort of blew my fuse. I still don't know why it offended me so much, but I went on some nerd-rage rampage. I wrote a scalding review on my blog, I trash-talked like crazy to anyone who would listen (and many who wouldn't), I magnified and complained about any little thing I could find wrong with the product...from the design of the game system, to the layout of the pages, to the actual paper the books were printed on. "Come and see the errata inherent in the system! Help, help, I'm being repressed!" I ended up giving my books away in defiance. I climbed on the Pathfinder bandwagon, I climbed on the C&C bandwagon, I threw a twitching fit about the GSL even though I am not a publisher. I made myself sick over it, with all of that misdirected negative energy.

So then I went on vacation for a week. I walked on the beach, I drank copious amounts of rum, I played some guitar. I built a bonfire or two, I played some volleyball, I went stargazing with my wife. In other words, I chilled out.

When we got back, I realized that I hadn't been on the Internet for more than a week. And when I signed back on to ENWorld and read some of the new threads, I shook my head...4E just didn't bother me as much as it used to. I think the Internet was contributing to my nerd rage more than the 4th Edition books were...in fact, it seemed quite silly to get so worked up over a game. A GAME, people. A toy. A plaything.

It's not that I don't care for 4th Edition; I realized that I don't care about 4th Edition. Nobody is twisting my arm and forcing me to play the new edition. I have shelves upon shelves of other RPGs to play, both tabletop and digital. Including my personal favorite (BECMI), which is still just as much fun to play now as it was when I was a pimply-faced teenager.

I will not be playing 4th Edition either, but not for any of the reasons listed by the zealous OP (and not for any of the tired and lame comments I myself have made in the recent past.) The truth of the matter is, I will not be playing 4th Edition because I don't want to. It really is that simple. No list of reasons, no shouts of dissent, no hate, no crying havoc, no letting slip of the dogs of war.

Is 4E "teh best version evar!!!!!111"? Nope.
Does that make it the worst? Nope.
Is there anything else to say on the matter? Nope.

I don't mean to be a killjoy here; it is a lot of fun to discuss the differences between the various editions of D&D, to talk about problems we came across and the ways we solved them. Everyone's opinion is equally valuable. I don't want to discourage discussion or comparisons, even emotional ones.

Anyway, I'm rambling. All of this to say, I am sorry for making a nuisance of myself and for acting like a spoiled teenager since the release of 4E. People should be able to play the games that they enjoy, and they should be able to share their ideas with other gamers here, and they should be able to do all of it without the smugness, sarcasm, or insults that myself and others have been dishing out. Right?
 
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Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
So then I went on vacation for a week. I walked on the beach, I drank copious amounts of rum, I played some guitar. I built a bonfire or two, I played some volleyball, I went stargazing with my wife. In other words, I chilled out.

Perspective is sometimes hard to get when one keeps one's nose to the monitor. While I know there'd be detriments to doing so, I have oft wondered what would happen to the tone of the place if we just closed EN World for a week forcing everyone - posters, mods, everyone - to take a break and do something else.
 


Darrin Drader

Explorer
Although not thrilled with 4E, my gripe is more the GSL than 4E itself. Looks like they're trying to fix that, so I'm taking a wait and see approach, again.

You know what would get me to play 4E? Spelljammer. Give me Spelljammer and I'll make use of those three books I bought.
 

True_Blue

First Post
Perspective is sometimes hard to get when one keeps one's nose to the monitor. While I know there'd be detriments to doing so, I have oft wondered what would happen to the tone of the place if we just closed EN World for a week forcing everyone - posters, mods, everyone - to take a break and do something else.

I believe most people would just gravitate somewhere else to rant for that week. It would either be WotC boards, Candlekeep, etc. There are plenty of places for people to talk, and complain, that most people probably wouldn't skip a beat.
 


The Little Raven

First Post
I have oft wondered what would happen to the tone of the place if we just closed EN World for a week forcing everyone - posters, mods, everyone - to take a break and do something else.

It puts the lotion on it's skin. It does this whenever it's told, or else it gets the hose again.
 

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
Perspective is sometimes hard to get when one keeps one's nose to the monitor. While I know there'd be detriments to doing so, I have oft wondered what would happen to the tone of the place if we just closed EN World for a week forcing everyone - posters, mods, everyone - to take a break and do something else.
Well, alright, but you'd better not forget the "copious amounts of rum" part.

Unfortunately, the troublemakers would most likely find another message board in the meantime (perhaps one that is not so well moderated), and get themselves worked up into an even bigger frenzy. Then when you bring ENWorld back up, they will all be back...with ammo and reinforcements...

It's probably best to just let it run its course. I've already noticed a big improvement in the Snark Level, from just a couple of weeks ago.
 

Wisdom Penalty

First Post
In the air of :):):)-for-tat, I'll throw in my two coppers too. Earlier, I had gotten pretty zealous defending 4e - not because I knew the system (it wasn't even out yet), but because my nerd rage grew against some of those who ranted against it. I, in effect, became pro-4e because I was anti the anti-4e crowd and the way I saw them doing business. Not all of them, mind you - just some of them.

I found myself thinking and talking negatively about a game (3E) that had given me and my mates nearly a decade of great D&D. Stoopid. I found myself railing against "flaws" in 3e that I didn't realize were flaws until 4e came along. Stoopid. I'd let posts by BryonD and Darrin, just to name a couple, send me over the top. I began to ritually scar myself and torment the neighbors' cats. Again - stoopid.

And I got banned for my antics. Twice. By Piratecat.

Ahh...the good old days.

Now I have 4e, and now I've played it, and now I realize there's a number of things I don't like about it. Do I think it's an improvement? Of course I do - otherwise I wouldn't be playing it. But is it perfect? Certainly not. Every one of us has an image of what the "perfect" game would be; for you it's BECM. That's Kool and his proverbial Gang.

I also got quite bitter at Paizo because I confused the company with the community on their boards. Not smart - sorta a large ad hominem on my part.

I have since grown fatter and more mellow. I would welcome Paizo into the 4on world, and would dance cartwheels if someone - anyone! - would produce a set of real, actual, paper magazines in support of 4e.

As I have stated, I don't think 4e was a finished product coming out of the gate. I think there are too few powers, too few rituals, too few magic items, and too few options. On an edition that prides itself on giving players options, I felt it has failed. Obviously, these concerns of mine are being addressed as supplemental content drifts down the pike - but I truly feel the game, as designed, needed to have a PHB and MM twice the size of the ones initially offered. Perhaps a good business move by WotC to limit it, but a bad move for my demanding consumerism (and my wallet).

Play what you like, ignore the constant nay-sayers, gloss over the bitterness in some posts, and be kind to animals. The world will be a better place.

WP
 


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