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
Even though the thread is closed, [MENTION=2]Piratecat[/MENTION] encouraged me to link it back whenever it's relevant. So whenever an edition war crops up, I like to add levity with this little gem I created long ago.

Come on fellas, don't take it so seriously. This is a game.
 

cbwjm

I can add a custom title.
2E representation on electronic tabletops might be somewhat lower due to the edition not being super-mini dependent: the same applies for "0E" and 1E, but those sold more at the time than 2 E ended up doing.

I voted for 1E, because I bought 1E books to use with 5E and have enjoyed them more than my experience with 2E, 3.x or 4E.
I think it will be interesting to see how much, if at all, that changes when fantasy grounds sets up the 2e rule set. Will there be a sudden boom of 2e games before settling down to similar numbers or will there be an increase which remains constant.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
2E representation on electronic tabletops might be somewhat lower due to the edition not being super-mini dependent: the same applies for "0E" and 1E, but those sold more at the time than 2 E ended up doing.

I voted for 1E, because I bought 1E books to use with 5E and have enjoyed them more than my experience with 2E, 3.x or 4E.
"I voted for 1E, because I bought 1E books to use with 5E and have enjoyed them more than my experience with 2E, 3.x or 4E."

I voted for 1E, because it's the best thing, ever, and other than the puzzling inclusion of Paladins, remains the platonic ideal of games, to which all other RPGs are but shadows on the wall, lacking tables.

There. I knew what you meant. :)
 

acpitz 1

Villager
Well that's weird. I made a post. Aldarc quoted the post. And then the text disappeared. I didn't even think you could have a blank post. If Aldarc has some strange voodoo magic going on, it's be nice to know ;)
No. It was censored by Oompa Loompa cleaning squad ...
 

GreyLord

Adventurer
Okay, with 4e keeping such a HUGE lead, if it keeps this up, this summer I'll devote time to make OSR 4e ruleset.

No idea how I'd publish it, but if that many love 4e, I should be able to make something that is very similar to 4e using the OGL or PRD (pathfinder's system I think it's called, but the one that is OGL for Pathfinder).

The biggest hurdle I can see is what to use for the XP tables to be similar to 4e without copying 4e...obviously.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
Lump PF in with 3e and its lead here becomes quite large. Lump some close-hewn OSR games (DCCRPG, Hackmaster, et al) in with 1e (and-or 0e?) and they'd about match 4e. I'm not aware of any systems that are as closely derived from 4e as these other examples are from their respective editions.
13th Age is probably one of the closest "kin systems" of 4E, being developed by the lead developers for both 3E and 4E.

For Everyone:
I also found a great Angry GM article where he reflects on 4E. He is critical in many places, but he is also incredibly open about the aspects he loved.

Here is one part where he talks about the lore cohesion of 4E, which is something that I mentioned before:
But, let’s talk about the story aspects of D&D 4E. Because that was another aspect I really loved. There was a very richly defined world in D&D 4E – in the CORE PRODUCTS – unlike any other default D&D world. Most editions of D&D take the “everything fantasy and the kitchen sink” approach and they treat all canon as equal.

That is to say, there are no REAL rules for undeath in the DEFAULT world of 3.5. World rules. There’s no explanation. Or rather, there’s hundreds of explanations. Every specific undead creature rises or gets created or whatever for its own reasons written into its lore entries. In D&D 4E, though, there’s some very specific rules and ideas that were decided pretty early on. If you look back in the preview book Worlds and Monsters, which was basically just a bunch of design essays about 4E, you’ll see that they had come up with this idea of “body, soul, and animus” that explained the different kinds of undead and why they existed. And, while it wasn’t really spelled out until the Open Grave supplement, all the core undead monsters (and necromantic) fit together consistently. You could piece together some of the rules if you really wanted to.

Demons and devils had specific origins that informed how they worked. Demons were elemental beings, corrupted by a seed of pure evil to become purely destructive. Devils were the servants of a dead god, mysteriously forgotten, who followed the rebellious angel Asmodeus. Of course, humanity lacks a creator god, but is very prone to corruption by Asmodeus, as we see in the origin of the tiefling race. So, which god got killed by Asmodeus? Was it maybe the patron of humanity? And are humans prone to corruption because that god was a god of ambition whose angels themselves got a little too ambitious?

There are hints of ancient wizarding orders and tactical schools sprinkled throughout the rules, details that implied a backstory that never fully got shared. And that was to its credit. Because a creative, world-building GM could take those hooks and fill in the backstory their own way. Those details were all consistent with SOMETHING, but we didn’t know what. But whatever we filled in the blanks with, it would create a consistently detailed world.

The idea of a world with a backstory and an origin story and very specific details is nothing new. But the idea of only sharing bits and pieces of the backstory to create blanks in the world so the GM can create a consistent backstory, I think that’s brilliant. I’m not sure if that’s what they intended. I think they only wanted to make sure the details of the game were consistent NOT JUST mechanically BUT ALSO thematically. But it became a sort of lore treasure hunt. It rewarded buying all the books because each offered more glimpses of the true story of the world.

In fact, I got SO ATTACHED to my own answer to all of those questions about the backstory of the world that, for the first time, I used the default D&D setting exclusively and built up my own lore around it. In fact, that’s the world I STILL run my games in. My current D&D game is set in the same world that I built out of the 4E lore.

Compared to that – and I hate to say this – 5E feels really soulless. In terms of world lore built into the core of the game, 5E is sparser than 3E. There’s no real sense of world in the books beyond what is required to describe characters. That is, we know what the races and classes are. And that’s it. There aren’t even gods in the book. Just a spreadsheet in the appendix. How sad.
A number of people who love 4E have talked about this as well. Though some people have complained that 4E was lore sparse when it comes to monsters and such, it was actually quite the opposite. The problem is that it wasn't necessarily a full info dump, but it was instead scattered throughout the various books and resources.

And he voices a similar sentiment that I have about 5E and its connection to 4E:
What I would have liked to see was for D&D 4E to start a new evolution of D&D. Yeah, it had problems, yes it didn’t work. But rather than sweeping it under the rug and pretending it didn’t exist, I would have loved for the core principles they used to become the foundation for the next edition. D&D 5E, as good as it is, is a disappointment to me. It represents a step backwards in terms of RPG evolution. It’s a whoopsie, it’s do-over, it’s a retcon, and it’s basically trading on nostalgia. And I think it’s too married to pleasing people like me, the aging community of gamers. It reminds me of the argument MatPat made in his Game Theory episode about Gamers Killing Video Games.
 
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gyor

Adventurer
Voted 2e, settings and nostalgia as it was the edition I played the most, holding out a couple of years into 3e. I came to enjoy 3e but my younger self was enthralled with the 2e games played with my friends.
Yeah it didn't have the best mechanics, but it was when alot of Settings were created and were properly detailed.
 

Quartz

Explorer
I've skipped 15 pages but I'm really surprised at the favour 4e has found.

Anyway, my favourite edition was 3E / 3.5E, but only as modified by me.
 

Mallus

Hero
“So we beat on, boats against the current, born back ceaselessly into the past.”

ie I voted AD&D because that’s where it began for me.

However, the best PC I ever created — who had some of the best moonbat companions — was in a 4e campaign.

And one of the best campaigns I ever ran used 3.0/3.5e.
 

oknazevad

Explorer
I voted for 2e, more because it's where I started in earnest and I still have very fond memeories of those sessions. I liked 3e when it was released for its consistency, but over time I've found the feat system to be tedious, which has persisted through to PF1 (which I still play because some of my groups do). And I find the focus on system mastery in design to be unfriendly to new or even just more casual players; gatekeeping shouldn't be baked into the game. Ultimately those factors have undermined my favoring of the 3.x branch, so I elevate 2e slightly above it, even with its hodgepodge rules and illogical race/class limits (which are easily ignored).
 
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oreofox

Explorer
I chose 3rd edition, as it was where I spent most of my playtime outside of 5e (am including Pathfinder in this), even though I started in 2e.

I would love to try and do a D&D timeline set of campaigns in my setting (start way in the past), where we start in D&D, jump 100 years or so and play some 1e, then 2e, 3e, PF, and then to the present with 5e. I leave out 4e because each time I would get the want for trying it out, I flip through the PHB and all desire just ends. But getting my players on board with doing this is a bit difficult. Also, running this over the internet (only way I can play) is tough as most VTT aren't too friendly when it comes to homebrew (mainly the character sheets, and I homebrew the hell out of my games).
 
I would love to try and do a D&D timeline set of campaigns in my setting (start way in the past), where we start in D&D, jump 100 years or so and play some 1e, then 2e, 3e, ...
Y'know, some groups have kinda done that, just organically, and it can be fun. Started in one edition and migrated to the next, with or without some in-campaign event (or time passage) marking the rev roll.

My old AD&D campaign spanned 1e & 2e, but as 2e started out so much like 1e I didn't mark it in any way (though I did annoy one player by whip-sawing his exp table around, and kept an established campaign reason that elves couldn't gain 6th+level spells even after level limits were loosened up).
A GM I gamed with over the next 10 or 15 years after that ran some 2e, then a 3e campaign that transitioned to 3.5 marking the transition with a "nexus event" that got no great detail, but a lot of laughs, then re-started with 4e, jumping forward in time and having some of the old PCs feature in history. I played an Eladrin WizardMcFighter ("Like many High Elves, I am trained as both a warrior and a mage"), and I'd lampshade ed differences a lot, going on about my grandfather, who's spellbook I was working from (Crossing a river: "This is Tenser's Floating Disk, an ancient spell, my grandfather's notes speak of 'memorizing' it on occasion and casting it quickly later, but I have never managed to prepare it myself, though it is easy enough to work through the formulae and get it working within 10 minutes or so. And, once conjured, it can be controlled more readily than his notes indicated - perhaps a consequence of the more involved casting?" Spamming Scorching Burst: "Ah, yes, my grandfather's Wand of Fireballs, a precious heirloom, but it's power is not what it once was..." ) More fun than I'd had playing a magic-user in a long time.
Over the same period … actually from '93 through 2008 or so … I was also running Champions, it had a rev-roll while I was between campaigns, but I kept them in the same world, and inserted a period when superpowers nearly vanished between the two (but, as with AD&D, really not a lot of differences between the BBB & FRED - eventually I settled on Hero Lite … OK, totally off topic, now, sorry.).
I was not above pulling similar hijinks when running Encounters, commenting on how spells or items "worked differently in the distant past" (on the assumption that the Lattice of Heaven shattered in the Dawn War was actually the Great Wheel - though sometimes I wonder if the World Axis wouldn't make as much sense as the distant /past/, with Erathis' new Latic of Heaven turning out to be the Great Wheel … heck, it could be cyclical). When my players decided to skip Council of Spiders I ran a different reference-laden quest to collect artifacts to bridge to Web of the Spider Queen, it included enemies like a Lich with 'dailies' that acted a lot more like classic high-spells than usual. ;>
 
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Ath-kethin

Explorer
My vote is a firm 2e. Adaptable, flexible, and ability scores meant something. Also, settings and ideas coming out of the woodwork.
 
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doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I suspect the lack of a visible edition war vs 5Ed may have as much to do with ENWorld policy against edition warring as anything else. I say that because I know there are PLENTY of people in my area not adopting the new edition. They’re griping, but not as much online.
Twitter is also vastly more positive about 5e than it was about 4e. It's also more positive about 4e than it was several years ago, actually.

Though they've proven futile, the point of them is to get a decent, official, Warlord in 5e - not warring against 5e.
Right. Those threads are full of two kinds of people

A. Those who like Warlords and 5e, and disagree with the statements sacrosanct quoted about why Warlords don't work or whatever. (seriously, there isn't any less a consensus amongst warlord fans than amongst paladin or ranger fans)

2. Thread crappers who have nothing useful to add to the thread, but instead just seem to want to crap on the thread premise, and every thought presented by those who are genuinely engaging with the thread premise.

Okay, with 4e keeping such a HUGE lead, if it keeps this up, this summer I'll devote time to make OSR 4e ruleset.

No idea how I'd publish it, but if that many love 4e, I should be able to make something that is very similar to 4e using the OGL or PRD (pathfinder's system I think it's called, but the one that is OGL for Pathfinder).

The biggest hurdle I can see is what to use for the XP tables to be similar to 4e without copying 4e...obviously.
So, I don't think that the XP tables need to be the same. You could use the 5e OGL to make a 4e descendant game, converting 4e creatures using the CR tables for 5e purely for basic HP, Proficiency bonus, etc, to replace the expanding numbers from 4e.

I don't know a single 4e fan that isn't down for a numerically simplified version of 4e. Its the options/customization, roles, tactical depth, and coherent lore, that 4e fans miss, IME.
 

Azzy

Cyclone Ranger
Right. Those threads are full of two kinds of people

A. Those who like Warlords and 5e, and disagree with the statements sacrosanct quoted about why Warlords don't work or whatever. (seriously, there isn't any less a consensus amongst warlord fans than amongst paladin or ranger fans)

2. Thread crappers who have nothing useful to add to the thread, but instead just seem to want to crap on the thread premise, and every thought presented by those who are genuinely engaging with the thread premise.
Agreed.
 
Those who like Warlords and 5e, and disagree with the statements sacrosanct quoted about why Warlords don't work or whatever. (seriously, there isn't any less a consensus amongst warlord fans than amongst paladin or ranger fans)
Or Psionics or Artificer fans. Some of us want an Artificer who's basically just a wizard who specializes in making magic items, others want a steampunk engineer, or Johnny Sokko, or to be Q to their party's James Bond. Psionics? Magic or not? Points or slots? Should it even be a class - it wasn't in 1e!

In any group of n on-line fans of x feature in y game, you probably have x^n + n^Y + n ideas of how x should work. (It's not supposed to make sense, stop trying to evaluate it!)


So, implying y'all hafta agree, is kinda like moving the goal post on the kicker with the ball in the air … except it starts with the goal post on the moon.


So, I don't think that the XP tables need to be the same. You could use the 5e OGL to make a 4e descendant game, converting 4e creatures using the CR tables for 5e purely for basic HP, Proficiency bonus, etc, to replace the expanding numbers from 4e.

I don't know a single 4e fan that isn't down for a numerically simplified version of 4e. Its the options/customization, roles, tactical depth, and coherent lore, that 4e fans miss, IME.
4e's big numbers are mostly smoke & mirrors, anyway. You gain levels, accumulate a bunch of bonuses, and generally wind up pretty close to exactly where you're supposed to be - it amounts to a system mastery exercise that's /just/ an exercise (yeah, like a treadmill). In theory, it'd've given any 3.x system masters who actually played it something to do, without busting the game in half.
In practice, they didn't show up anyway, so lets just do BA - same window, no dressing.
 

UngeheuerLich

Adventurer
2nd edition because it has a special spot in my heart for introducing me to this hobby and sparkling my imaginations.
If 3.0 and 3.5 were different options, I´d say 3.0 was my favourite system. It enabled me to run a game as a DM and allowed me to look at the game from the other side. I horribly failed on ADnD and did so too when I tried it years later. 3.0 retained a lot of what I liked of 2nd editon and gave me all the rules I needed.
3.5 killed the free form nature of spells and combats in general and transitioned to mini combats, which detracted fom the story far more than I liked.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
4e's big numbers are mostly smoke & mirrors, anyway. You gain levels, accumulate a bunch of bonuses, and generally wind up pretty close to exactly where you're supposed to be - it amounts to a system mastery exercise that's /just/ an exercise (yeah, like a treadmill). In theory, it'd've given any 3.x system masters who actually played it something to do, without busting the game in half.
In practice, they didn't show up anyway, so lets just do BA - same window, no dressing.
I wouldn't go that far. After all, there is a tangible difference between the classes, but for the most part you're right. As far as the accuracy and damage vs HP numbers go, it's just a treadmill. Replacing it with 5e-esque numbers with a slightly higher starting point would work fine.

Then you just port over the classes, rework powers to look like manuevers, and star wars saga style force powers or starship manuevers, power over rituals, etc, and it's totally doable.
 

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