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D&D 5E D&D Studio Blog - Sage Advice - Creature Evolutions

There's a new D&D Studio Blog - Jeremy's posted about "Creature Evolutions": Creature Evolutions | Dungeons & Dragons

Some quick takeaways:
  • Some creatures that were formerly humanoids will, going forward, be monstrosities, fey, or something else. ("Humanoid" is reserved for creatures with similar "moral and cultural range" to humans.)
  • Alignment got put in a "time out".
  • They've started using class tags so that DMs know that a particular NPC can attune to magic items limited to a particular class.
  • Bonus actions get their own section in the stat block now.
  • They've merged the Innate Spellcasting and Spellcasting traits and have gotten rid of spell slots.
Also some stuff we've already guessed based on the stat blocks and playable races in Wild Beyond the Witchlight.

There's also some Sage Advice on "rabbit hops" for harengon PCs.

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Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/They)
Well, a bit of googling turned up this:




Additionally, there is this:

Yep.

Make no mistake, they wouldn’t have killed 4e so early if it hadn’t been underperforming. But in this case, “underperforming” meant “not selling as well as it could be.” The brand was continuing to grow, as it always has done, the problem was that its potential for continued growth was stunted due to the competition from Pathfinder.
 

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Xethreau

Josh Gentry - Author, Minister in Training
Yep.

Make no mistake, they wouldn’t have killed 4e so early if it hadn’t been underperforming. But in this case, “underperforming” meant “not selling as well as it could be.” The brand was continuing to grow, as it always has done, the problem was that its potential for continued growth was stunted due to the competition from Pathfinder.
There was also the terribly, terribly botched launch of digital tools. :|
 


AcererakTriple6

Autistic DM (he/him)
Oh, you know. Displacer beasts used to have been from a crashed spaceship up on the Barrier Peaks, which is clearly a superior origin then them being from the Feywild. Stuff like that.
Oh, they're originally from that adventure? That's cool, I didn't know that. I personally prefer them with the Feywild origin, especially with 5e's lore of them being used as domesticated hunting animals by the Unseelie Court to kill Pegasi, Blink Dogs, and similar fey creatures.
 

Hussar

Legend
Yep.

Make no mistake, they wouldn’t have killed 4e so early if it hadn’t been underperforming. But in this case, “underperforming” meant “not selling as well as it could be.” The brand was continuing to grow, as it always has done, the problem was that its potential for continued growth was stunted due to the competition from Pathfinder.
Everyone tends to forget that for the Hasbro overlords, success was that 50 million dollar mark. They wanted to make D&D a core brand. Which mean that 4e would have had to hit about 2017 5e sales marks to reach that goal. Or somewhere in that neighbourhood. In other words, for D&D to become a core brand, 4e would have had to have been wildly more successful than it was. Not that that means that 4e was unsuccessful. It was unsuccessful at achieving a sales target that was larger than the entire value of the industry, never minding D&D.

That's why we got 5e as soon as we did. Not because 4e was this massive failure in the market, but, because the goals set for success were, by the standards of the time, completely unattainable.
 

teitan

Legend
Do we know 4E outsold 3E? Honest question, because I don't remember ever seeing that stated as verified fact.
With DDI it made more money that’s for sure. 4e’s “failure” was with Hasbro’s bean counters. The product was expected to reach a certain level, 50 million, to become a core brand alongside Transformers and MLP. The team was handicapped though because of the failure of the VTT to manifest, the GSL not being as extensive and usable as the OGL, that licensed media, unlike Tformers and MLP, didn’t count towards that bottom line of 50 million. When the product failed to reach that level, after being given a massive budget off of 3.5’s success, the budget was slashed. It didn’t help that it was confusing on where to start playing the game and it didn’t really hit its stride until Essentials. I think had they let 3.5 lie a while longer and been given the OGL and then launched the more refined form of 4e that was essentials, we would probably have just gotten 5e in the last two years and a very different game.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Well, a bit of googling turned up this:




Additionally, there is this:

Thanks for the info.

My impression always was that for editions 2-4, sales spiked and then started dropping off. Because of a multitude of factors, 5E just continues to grow which is pretty phenomenal. Oh, and I also agree that 4E was pushed out prematurely. I know the power structure was never really meant to be used across the board as one example. Whether the game would have had better staying power is anybody's guess.

My only concern with the anniversary edition (or whatever it's going to be called) is that they're doing it just to generate sales because nothing can grow forever and the bean counters are just trying to cash in.
 

Well, a bit of googling turned up this:




Additionally, there is this:

thank you I was about to post half of this
 

Yep.

Make no mistake, they wouldn’t have killed 4e so early if it hadn’t been underperforming. But in this case, “underperforming” meant “not selling as well as it could be.” The brand was continuing to grow, as it always has done, the problem was that its potential for continued growth was stunted due to the competition from Pathfinder.
to put it another way
4e was a huge break out hit BUT they saw that another company was makeing money off the OGL, and they wanted THAT money too. so they reluanched in an attempt to make MORE money...

it worked... they are a buisness in buisness to make money not to make a game... the game is always secondary to the making of MORE mony... people just keep rewriting history to make it seem like 4e failed...

Imagine you had a job you liked (but didn't love) and it was a 35 min commute everyday that sometime became closer to an hour if traffic was bad, and they paid you $100,000 a year. No one would call you a failure, you are making good money... BUT now imagine some other company 10 minutes (2-3 exits) closer to you doing the same thing for $120,000 a year and slightly better benefits (like maybe cheaper insurance and matching 1% more on 401k). if you take the new job it doesn't mean the old one was bad, or a fail... just you found a more lucrative one. In this example after a few years you MIGHT even look back and think you LIKED that other job more becuse it had better people, or a nicer boss...but it still isn't wrong to want the more money.
 

dave2008

Legend
My only concern with the anniversary edition (or whatever it's going to be called) is that they're doing it just to generate sales because nothing can grow forever and the bean counters are just trying to cash in.
I am sure there is an aspect of that, but it also seems to me that they are taking an honest pass at cleaning things up. Now, will everyone agree that the things they change needed to be changed or that they changed it correctly? No, they will not. But with just the items they have already discussed in the monster stat blocks all seem like helpful improvements to me.
 

Faolyn

Hero
Oh, they're originally from that adventure? That's cool, I didn't know that. I personally prefer them with the Feywild origin, especially with 5e's lore of them being used as domesticated hunting animals by the Unseelie Court to kill Pegasi, Blink Dogs, and similar fey creatures.
I could go with either, depending on the type of game in question, or just have them as a type of weird magical animal. I do like the Feywild origin a lot, however. Although, I just realized something. I've been rereading the ElfQuest comics recently, and in the "Shards" storyline, the evil elf Winnowill mutates regular dogs into "peace hounds"--which have tentacles on their shoulders--for the express purpose of detecting and killing the good elf protagonists. I wonder how much, if any, of the new displacer beast origin stems from that. (2e's Complete Book of Elves gives them 2-year pregnancies, which is another thing that originated in ElfQuest.)

1633709092403.png
 

Rabulias

Hero
Oh, they're originally from that adventure? That's cool, I didn't know that. I personally prefer them with the Feywild origin, especially with 5e's lore of them being used as domesticated hunting animals by the Unseelie Court to kill Pegasi, Blink Dogs, and similar fey creatures.
Displacer beasts were not introduced in the Expedition to the Barrier Peaks adventure, but they were present, and it became a popular fan theory as to their origin.
 




Hussar

Legend
I am sure there is an aspect of that, but it also seems to me that they are taking an honest pass at cleaning things up. Now, will everyone agree that the things they change needed to be changed or that they changed it correctly? No, they will not. But with just the items they have already discussed in the monster stat blocks all seem like helpful improvements to me.
Yeah, let's be honest here, 10 years is not unreasonable to expect an update for a rule set as complicated as D&D. Heck, we get more frequent updates in video games and they're at least as complicated as D&D (says someone who is STILL trying to wrap his head around Stellaris). It would be pretty sad to think that the rules are just going to be set in stone, and keep grinding gears all the way along.

I think I can be perfectly happy with a new "update" every ten years. I certainly wouldn't complain about it. And, since they're going to put all the major changes through a couple of UA cycles (both to get the playtesting experience AND to market), it's not like the revised 5e will be a huge surprise to anyone.
 

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