Favourite D&D edition that’s not 5E

Favourite D&D Edition

  • OD&D

    Votes: 18 6.1%
  • AD&D 1E

    Votes: 43 14.6%
  • AD&D 2E

    Votes: 72 24.5%
  • D&D 3E/3.5

    Votes: 79 26.9%
  • D&D 4E

    Votes: 73 24.8%
  • Other (not 5E)

    Votes: 9 3.1%

  • Total voters
    294

MoonSong

Rules-lawyering drama queen... Be nice plz n_n
Can't decide if its 2e or 3.5. To me 2e will always have a mystique that nothing can compare with. If it had the sorcerer it would be perfect to me. On the other hand 3.5 is the whole opposite, it has the sorcerer and I feel comfortable with it.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
4E would be over represented in a least favorite edition poll. 4E is also over represented in online message boards, out in the wild in online tables it's around 1%.

The fans also spilt the other editions. I voted 2E next favorite is B/X then 1E then 3.X. Doesn't mean I dislike those editions. Hardcore fans of 4E also don't tend to like any other edition, at least they don't say anything nice about it esp 3.X.
 

Fenris-77

Explorer
Also, the opinion of players on basic and 1E is often very tied to their age. If you're old enough to have been playing when they came out you probably have a lot more love for them than someone who only knows them as artifacts. Anyone who opened the 1E Unearthed Arcana for the first time and read the barbarian knows exactly what I mean.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Its a tough call for me.

3e d20 with the OGL allowed tons of content and tons of options that are really cool. Downsides of balance issues, LFQW, trap options, and complex DM mechanics.

4e has balance, non/low magical options that work if you want a sword and sorcery or no real loot game, rangers and rogues that work great as strikers, great monster mechanics, evocative planar setup, and a cool mythology. Downsides of no srd, the fiasco of the D&D tools, the deprecation of the paid offline tools that worked, and lots of people hate it. My favored edition for playing with my son when he was younger.

Basic and AD&D were good and I played them from the 80s through the 90s but mechanically I prefer the later systems more.
 

Legatus_Legionis

< BLAH HA Ha ha >
AD&D 2e all the way.

It was the Encyclopedia Magica, the ultimate guide to magical items.

Since my group(s) tends to use treasure types, luckstones, and lots of rolling.

My campaigns are also full of magical items, and magical markets (buy or sell) is a big point in my games.
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
I would rank ...

1. 4e
2. 5e
3. 3e
4. 1e/2e

My frustration with 5e is the unavailability of many things that I love. Psionics. Charisma elf. Magical warrior (swordmage). Nonmagical healer (warlord). Nontheistic cleric.

The list goes on and on.

For me, 5e remains painful.

The part of 5e I love the most is, Wizard as a spontaneous caster, and Bard as a full caster. I love these, and they are probably a major reason why I am still around. These are 4e-isms, but still remarkable in the context of 5e returning to earlier editions.

I appreciate balance and love 4e. I love cantrips. Thank you 4e.
I love the character optimization of 3e. But the imbalance frustrates me.
I appreciating the pioneering of 1e/2e. I played them blended together.

I tend to be a worldbuilder for settings, so core rules that are easy to readapt thematically matter to me.
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
Also, I love theater of mind style for most encounters. That is something that 1e/2e and 5e are best at. And this matters to me alot.
 
Taking 5E out of the equation, what’s your favourite D&D edition — and why?
3.0 - because it's a very comprehensive system with vast design room for homebrew material. If you want a game that has a ready-made rule for (almost) every situation and you like fiddly bits, that is.

I specifically prefer 3.0 over 3.5 because it was designed "organically" and it holds together better, while the revised edition was mostly a set of disconnected patches that created new problems.
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
Interesting that 4e seems to be (slightly) in the lead in the poll. It's not my cup of tea; I was certain that 3.x would far outpace the others. My own vote is 3.5 although I'm almost completely over to 5e these days.

I started with 2e and it was fun, but I thought 3.5 was more user-friendly (BAB versus THAC0!). Of course, it was also the edition with the most there's-a-rule-or-prestige-class-for-that-somewhere which was the main downside, as far as I'm concerned.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
I’m curious, what does 3e have for you that 5e lacks?
I know I’m not the one you asked, but for me, 3e has a certain je ne sais quoi that no other edition has managed to capture. It’s a hot mess, but in a weird way, that’s exactly what makes it so charming. Beneath all its quirks and eccentricities, it’s got so much damn heart that even as someone who knows I don’t enjoy playing it, I still find myself kinda wishing I did. And for those who do love it warts and all, any innovations that might improve the experience run the risk of streamlining the charm right out of it. I think that’s why it’s had so much staying power. It’s beloved for the very reasons one would want to make a new edition.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
How many have tried 2E using BAB? I have a word document with the conversions and a few houserules- no level limits tweaked humans. Quite enjoyed it circa 2013.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
I voted for 4E.

My foray into D&D technically began with me trying to figure out "whiskey tango foxtot is going on?" during two final sessions of 2E before the group planned on switching to 3E which would soon release. So 3E was really my actual first D&D system. It was new and fun, and I have probably played more games using 3E's d20 skeleton than any other system. So I have a lot of fondness for it.

I liked 4E because it addressed a lot of my growing problems with 3E. I liked the mix of balance and tacitcal options. I liked its at-will cantrips and combat options. I liked its ritual magic. I liked its skill challenges. I liked its interesting and dynamic monster design. (And I think that 5E took two huge step backwards with designing their monsters.) I liked the class tiers and epic destinies. I liked the new races and classes that were introduced. I loved the Warlord and non-clerical/bardic healing. I liked its use of power sources. I liked its new cosmology and alignments, both of which evoked the mythic and folkloric inspiration. I liked a lot of the new lore that came out of 4E. I liked Nentir Vale and its Points of Light setting. It was almost like a fresh Greyhawk setting - a setting meant for plopping in dungeons and adventures - but without the baggage of Greyhawk's tremendous accumulated lore.

Finding people who wanted to play 4E, however, was a monumental task. There were a lot of people I knew who turned it down purely on internet and gameshop hearsay than had actually read it or were aware of its mechanics. When I finally found a group, we enjoyed 4E tremendously. Most have since shifted to playing 5E, but I believe that there is something of a desire to reexamine what 4E did well (if not better than 5E) now that more time has passed between 5E and the Edition Wars.
 

TwoSix

The hero you deserve
The fans also spilt the other editions. I voted 2E next favorite is B/X then 1E then 3.X. Doesn't mean I dislike those editions. Hardcore fans of 4E also don't tend to like any other edition, at least they don't say anything nice about it esp 3.X.
Can't agree with that; I'd argue the contingent that likes both 4e and 5e is larger than the contingent that only likes 4e.

I like pretty much every edition except 1e, the 1e books always seemed kinda ugly to me, and I never understood why people would go back and play 1e when 2e was right there.
 

MechaPilot

Explorer
Hardcore fans of 4E also don't tend to like any other edition, at least they don't say anything nice about it esp 3.X.
I can't say I'd agree with that.

Based on our past discussions and disagreements I don't think I'm making a wild assumption in thinking that you'd consider me to be a "hardcore fan of 4e," and I've also played and enjoyed BECMI, AD&D 2e, 3e and 5e. Each one has their own quirks and foibles that gives them a different feel and experience in play. Where some may see a flaw in one edition, another might see a feature (and vice versa). While I have my preferences (in the order of 4e, 5e, AD&D 2e, 3e then BECMI), I can honestly say I'd have no real problem playing in most any edition of D&D. I think the DM and how well you fit with the group and with the kind of game she wants to run matters far more than the edition.
 

Jer

Adventurer
Hardcore fans of 4E also don't tend to like any other edition, at least they don't say anything nice about it esp 3.X.
Eh - I think you're mistaking "push back from fans of the edition who are fed up with how it gets dragged by its detractors" for "not being fans of other editions". When the folks screaming at you are extremely negative towards a thing you like, you tend to get as loud and obnoxious when you push back.

I marked 4e, but I'm also a big fan of BECMI (mostly out of nostalgia and with all of my house rules for it in place, admittedly) and I'd probably put 5e in third place and then 3e followed by everything else. I like 5e because it took a lot of the good mechanics of 4e and kept them, even if they did tweak them and obfuscate them a bit to allay the concerns of the folks who didn't like 4e because 4e made the game mechanics too obvious. 5e is almost as easy to DM as 4e was, which is great because I don't have the time to DM a game as mechanically complex on the DM's side as 3e was, or even as complex as 2e was.
 

MechaPilot

Explorer
5e is almost as easy to DM as 4e was, which is great because I don't have the time to DM a game as mechanically complex on the DM's side as 3e was, or even as complex as 2e was.
Especially when you get into making high-level villains with character classes. That was such a pain in 3e. I'd almost rather shoot myself than have to make a 20th level rogue or wizard villain (or NPC) for 3e.
 

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