D&D 5E Considering the D&D Next Playtest in Light of the WotC Seminars

Also the return to relative incompetence at level one isn't inspiring. One of the things I liked about 3e and 4e is that they made the PCs of an Heroic Fantasy RPG more heroic from the start.

I don't know if 'incompetence' is the right word. I think it's more that you don't start head-and-shoulders above the opposition. And I for one am down with that - provided we don't get back to the days of wizards being killed by housecats.
 

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Tony Vargas

Legend
I don't know if 'incompetence' is the right word. I think it's more that you don't start head-and-shoulders above the opposition. And I for one am down with that - provided we don't get back to the days of wizards being killed by housecats.
Oh, I don't mind wizards being killed by housecats. I just don't like it as a balancing mechanism for Wish. ;)

But, yeah, with the theif aparently able to stealth without a roll, 'incompetence' may not be the right word.
 

Saracenus

Always In School Gamer
Or 'Melf's Minute Meteor' - I wonder if they lost the rights to Melf somehow, because 4e has a plain vanilla 'acid arrow?'

Melf's Minute Meteor was just mentioned in Robert J. Schwalb's Designer article at WotC for Heroes of the Elemental Chaos. Just in time!

Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game Official Home Page - Article (Designing Chaos: Classes and Themes)

"Just as the book gives a nod to DARK SUN, we also recall the Al-Qadim setting from 2nd Edition. I always found the sha'ir kit interesting and compelling, and so bringing this concept back as a wizard build let us resurrect a great concept left behind from a previous edition. By choosing the sha'ir build, you gain the service of a gen servant, who pops off to fetch spells for you from the powers in the Elemental Chaos. Your alliance with this minor elemental grants you access to a wide range of elemental powers, from a Harry Potter-inspired watery sphere to classic spells such as Melf's minute meteors, dig, and reverse gravity. Even if you don't choose the sha'ir build, the new wizard powers are available to all wizards, offering cool new spells no matter what kind of wizard you play."

Now back to your regularly scheduled D&D Next!
 

Sadras

Legend
I'm not real enthused by the 'mother may I' style of play, it /is/, as you may have experienced, very dependent on the skill/experience, personality/talent, and mood of the DM.

Fair comment. But skill/experience of a DM has always played a part on whether a session was enjoyable or not or whether the preparation of the adventure was good, or whether the DM was well rested...

The D&D enthusiasts they wish to capture (their target audience) are not new roleplayers. Sure they want to expand the hobby, but the target market is the fragmented D&D base which they hope to unite. The D&D base is skilled/experienced/talented...sure there are bad DMs out there, but I'm sure the new DMG will provide the tools and guidelines to use this new edition efficiently. I guess I'm a little bias, and therefore a little more optimistic, since I am a DM myself :).

Also the return to relative incompetence at level one isn't inspiring. One of the things I liked about 3e and 4e is that they made the PCs of an Heroic Fantasy RPG more heroic from the start.

I can never understand why this is a problem...never

There are levels which reflect power, start at a higher level, explain the lower levels as backstory fluff.
One of the things I miss from the BECMI and older editions are the titles you received at each level. It could easily be explained that the mage was a junior apprentice at level 1 and then became the senior apprentice in his master's tower at level 2 before venturing out on his own at level 3 after his master's unfortunate accident...wala Level 3 starting point. More hit points more power. Why are we still making an issue of this?
 
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Ichneumon

First Post
Stop the press. D&D Next threatens to reward players who kickstart the grey pudding between their ears.

When a list of skills isn't laid out in front of you, discerning what your six ability scores will let you do takes a little mental effort, especially for new players. Just because a PC has a high enough score to automatically succeed at a task doesn't mean the player will think of it. Those advantage bonuses will be reaped by players smart enough to figure out ways to get them.

Not that I'd want this to result in the old adversarial playstyle where DMs filled a dungeon with "gotchas". But I like the idea of players having to think quickly to deal with combats and hazards that turned out more dangerous than they picked.
 


MortalPlague

Adventurer
Melf was one of Gary Gygax's old PCs, unless I'm mistaken?

The playtest report had a delightful amount of information in it, particularly compared to what we're used to reading. So thank you very much, bspauls. You've done us a service.

Who survived the near-TPK, out of curiosity? :)
 

Melf was one of Luke Gygax's characters in Gary Gygax's original Greyhawk campaign.

The name was short for Male Elf, since the character was a male elf and Luke couldn't be bothered thinking up a better name.
 

Wait, so with the Wizard "setting the DC" for the saving throws, that means they're returning to the pre-4e way of spells. No more rolling to attack, just the defender has to make a save.
I doubt they'll get rid of the save every round for spell duration, but this change has me very disappointed. Everybody rolling attack rolls against defenses was one of the best changes for 4e IMHO.
 

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