Grognard view of One D&D?

Thomas Shey

Legend
Problem is, if all your friends decide to stay on the bus, then what?

You're standing there on the roadside right where you want to be, by yourself, as the bus pulls away with your friends still aboard. That's the problem many face every time there's a major update or edition change, and the only perfect solution is to never again change editions.

I don't think WotC is going to go that route, somehow.

I don't even think that's a perfect solution; its always possible a group will end up getting on an entirely different bus. Many decades ago, we had one player who was really grumpy when our group largely en-masse moved from D&D to RuneQuest, but he just had to go off and find another D&D group because we were all pretty firm about it. So you not only have to never have a new edition, you have to have a group that never loses interest in the system you're playing in general.
 

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Citizen Mane

The Kajamba Lion
This can be achieved by releasing two versions - dare I call them Basic and Advanced - with Basic as the simple ready-to-roll gateway.
If they didn't make everything that was published compatible with both versions, they'd end up splintering their market. It's likely to happen anyhow as some people stick with 5e or migrate to other games, but doing it intentionally seems like it would end badly for WotC. I also wonder if there's room for a Basic game on the market that would function as its own game and not a funnel pushing players into an Advanced edition.
 


Smackpixi

Adventurer
Problem is, if all your friends decide to stay on the bus, then what?

You're standing there on the roadside right where you want to be, by yourself, as the bus pulls away with your friends still aboard. That's the problem many face every time there's a major update or edition change, and the only perfect solution is to never again change editions.

I don't think WotC is going to go that route, somehow.
So, I liked this post even though I don’t exactly understand where you’re coming from. It’s sad and I appreciate sad, but what it‘s sad about I just don’t truly get. I haven’t played this game for decades, and I’m surely less attached to it than many here, but to me, the most important thing about it is who you play with, that being so vastly more important than anything else, how you play seems insignificant.

it’s, for me, a game about sitting around a table, or computer screen now, and pretending to be someone or something you’re not. For me, that requires a level of trust I just don’t have with everyone in this world. If I’m going to play act as an elf, who lost their mom when they were young, and is questing to find the orcs responsible, hates all orcs because of this, but struggles with their racism toward orcs…if I’m going to do this, and do it seriously, I’m going to need to be around awesome people I love and trust to not feel absolutely ridiculous doing it.

how crossing the broken bridge and owlbear attack are resolved is important, but secondary to being around the right people.

And I feel like being around the right people allows post session, between session, discussions to happen like, “did anyone else think the 30 minutes we spent resolving that broken bridge situation really torturous?” to happen. And we decide if it was torturous or the epitome of gaming fun, and decide how to do it the same or otherwise next time. And we thus, over time, make our own game using or not, the published rules that change over time.

maybe I’m weird, but I find the rule systems just a framework to help people tell their stories and have adventures. And those rules will evolve according to the stories and battles that the group has and wants to have.

i get having more experience or believing what your group is up to could be resolved in more or less gamified ways, but at the end of the day, being around a trusted group matters more than how we resolve crossing the broken bridge.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I played Red Box D&D and AD&D 1e starting in the early/mid 80s, skipped 2, 3, 3.5, and 4, and started playing again with 5e. I've really loved 5e but would appreciate a few tweaks here and there. I'm cautiously optimistic about One D&D. If it gives some new options, has some new ideas for making aspects of game easier to run, and provides increasingly useful digital tools--all while allowing me to continue to run years worth of adventuring and setting material I've bought and a homebrewed--then I'm all in.

I've never felt abandoned or ignored by WotC as an older player and appreciate them making a game that rekindled my love for TTRPGs.

Now, if they change the game so much that it makes all my existing material unplayable with the new rule, I'll just stick to 5e with some home-rules. I've bought enough material to keep my playing into retirement. But from what I've seen so far, it doesn't look like that will be the case.

Note that this is all from the perspective of a DM. As a player, I'll play whatever rules the DM is using. If I like the DM and his or her style, I rarely find that the rules get in the way of my enjoyment of playing.

Glad I missed all the earlier edition wars. I find it hard to relate. The only gaming-related battles that challenge me are finding the time to game as much as I would like.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
If they didn't make everything that was published compatible with both versions, they'd end up splintering their market. It's likely to happen anyhow as some people stick with 5e or migrate to other games, but doing it intentionally seems like it would end badly for WotC. I also wonder if there's room for a Basic game on the market that would function as its own game and not a funnel pushing players into an Advanced edition.
Being a funnel into the Advanced version would be most of the point of Basic, though ideally it would and could also be played as it's own thing without ever moving to Advanced if that's what the group wanted from it.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Find more friends (or new ones) to share your interests. You are allowed to have more friends, play more games, and meet with other groups.
I was using "friends" as an analogy for the greater D&D community, rather than referring to one's specific personal friends.

I've never understood the groupthink among so many people that says they have to have the latest new thing even if it doesn't function as well as what they already have; and this is true not just of D&D editions but also of cars, technology, fashion, and a gajillion other things. Corporations love it as it keeps the treadmill going, but it often makes no sense for the consumer/end user.

Someone deciding to stay put with what they have gets, in effect, left behind as the spotlight of official support and hype moves on to the newer version.
 

payn

Legend
I was using "friends" as an analogy for the greater D&D community, rather than referring to one's specific personal friends.

I've never understood the groupthink among so many people that says they have to have the latest new thing even if it doesn't function as well as what they already have; and this is true not just of D&D editions but also of cars, technology, fashion, and a gajillion other things. Corporations love it as it keeps the treadmill going, but it often makes no sense for the consumer/end user.

Someone deciding to stay put with what they have gets, in effect, left behind as the spotlight of official support and hype moves on to the newer version.
"The only thing constant in life is change" -Heraclitus
 

Jacob Lewis

Ye Olde GM
I was using "friends" as an analogy for the greater D&D community, rather than referring to one's specific personal friends.
Oh, I see what you're saying.

Still, the "greater community" isn't someone that I personally need to appease or cater to, unless I am running a business. I can assure you that, currently, I am not.
I've never understood the groupthink among so many people that says they have to have the latest new thing even if it doesn't function as well as what they already have; and this is true not just of D&D editions but also of cars, technology, fashion, and a gajillion other things. Corporations love it as it keeps the treadmill going, but it often makes no sense for the consumer/end user.
100% agreed.
Someone deciding to stay put with what they have gets, in effect, left behind as the spotlight of official support and hype moves on to the newer version.
Maybe. I think the OSR movement might say otherwise. Nostalgia can be a powerful thing.
 


haakon1

Adventurer
If they didn't make everything that was published compatible with both versions, they'd end up splintering their market. It's likely to happen anyhow as some people stick with 5e or migrate to other games, but doing it intentionally seems like it would end badly for WotC. I also wonder if there's room for a Basic game on the market that would function as its own game and not a funnel pushing players into an Advanced edition.
True, but what if modules and settings have support for multiple versions/editions? When everything is electronic, having “dual rules” is possibl, though not as cheap as single rules.

So, yeah, they almost certainly won’t do this.
 

haakon1

Adventurer
I played Red Box D&D and AD&D 1e starting in the early/mid 80s, skipped 2, 3, 3.5, and 4, and started playing again with 5e. I've really loved 5e but would appreciate a few tweaks here and there. I'm cautiously optimistic about One D&D.
Now, if they change the game so much that it makes all my existing material unplayable with the new rule, I'll just stick to 5e with some home-rules. I've bought enough material to keep my playing into retirement. But from what I've seen so far, it doesn't look like that will be the case.
That’s what most people wish with new editions, I think, but we don’t always get it.
Note that this is all from the perspective of a DM. As a player, I'll play whatever rules the DM is using. If I like the DM and his or her style, I rarely find that the rules get in the way of my enjoyment of playing
Glad I missed all the earlier edition wars. I find it hard to relate.
Suffice it to say, the versions you’ve played - Basic, 1e, and 5e - were not targets in the edition wars.

I’ve never played Basic, but someone wanted to run one of those 3 versions, sure, why not, is my attitude too, as a player.

Which is an interesting observation - edition changes put the vast majority of the work to learn and teach, and cost and annoyance of obsolescence of materials, and pain with pressure to switch or not switch, on the DM’s.
 
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DarkCrisis

Legend
Fun seeing the modern crowd deny what we've been through several times. Especially with 3.5 ed.

"It's not a new edition! WotC said so!"

"It's backwards compatible!" Which has always been a half-truth.

As for the system itself. Eh. Just more changes that I think take some of the flavor of D&D away and/or change it to something I barely recognize. From swords and sorcery to anime. But thats the modern crowd and that's who's spending $. I can't fault WotC for catering to the crowd who want a different flavor of game than I do.

Doesn't mean I have to like it.

Recently went back to DMing 2E after almost only all 5E since it's release, and it's the best D&D related thing I've done in a long while. Feels like the good old days when D&D made sense and not every little thing was questioned. "But why does my cleric have to have a deity? Can you change the dungeon to be wheelchair accessible? Why are Orcs bad? Etc"

Not to mention how much "easier" 5th ed is in terms of survivability.

Again, glad D&D is at new heights of popularity, but it's no longer for me more or less (Ill still play 5E or One, but I will no longer DM it). And thats fine. I'm sure Ill buy at least the PHB for One.
 
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Thomas Shey

Legend
True, but what if modules and settings have support for multiple versions/editions? When everything is electronic, having “dual rules” is possibl, though not as cheap as single rules.

So, yeah, they almost certainly won’t do this.

You'd have to have a serious split base before a company is going to consider that worthwhile.
 

Thomas Shey

Legend
Suffice it to say, the versions you’ve played - Basic, 1e, and 5e - were not targets in the edition wars.

That might have been true with the first one (though there was always some weirdness about the offshoot line versus AD&D) but I think you're understating the other two.
 

overgeeked

B/X Known World
I came into the hobby in '84. I started with B/X and switched to AD&D fairly quickly. My longest standing D&D group is made up of mostly the same people we played with back then and some of our kids. We kept playing AD&D through 2E, 3E, and 3.5...utterly ignoring the edition churn. Though I absolutely love many of the 2E settings. For some reason we jumped on 4E and played it from launch to the start of the Next playtest. We've played 5E since...and are about to switch to DCC. Though I play and run a bunch of other games with other groups.

I consider myself a grognard even though I'm a bit of a late comer because I still prefer that earlier style of play. Zero to hero. The possibility of death around every corner. Hard scrabble adventures. Avoiding combat as much as possible because it's deadly. Combat as war. Characters starting weak and having to do things in the game to earn all the bells and whistles. Player skill. Emergent story. Etc. As much as I like the smoother bits of the 5E system, to get it to play how I want, i.e. for it to be a challenge at all to the PCs, I have to house rule the thing within an inch of it's life. That's not what I'm paying professional game designers to do. Which is one reason why the debacle that is Spelljammer 5E irritates me to no end. The whole premise of the setting is tall ships in space...and yet their ship-to-ship combat "rules" consist of a few lines mostly telling you not to bother and instead focus on boarding actions. There's nothing on making wildspace systems. Nothing on the various wildspace systems not directly related to the module. A few pages on Bral is the most you get. There's basically nothing there. The original is $10 as a PDF or $30 as POD and has an order of magnitude more useable information than the new one...which is $70. And that's the "professionals" who're putting out "professional products" at the biggest RPG company on the planet. LOL.

But...I'm also on the fence about a few things. I think the modern way of doing things is better in some areas. As much as I like the default to human feel of older editions, I was always trying to play goblins, drow, minotaurs, orcs, etc. I like that there are more and more varied race options now than there were before. But I also recognize that there's something lost in making the magical so mundane. You lose the wow factor. It's no longer a terrifying monster at the center of an endless maze when it's your friend Bob the minotaur's cousin.

What do I think of this new version of D&D? It will be great to mine for ideas. Not sure how much I'll actually play it. I expect the PC option power creep we've seen since 2014 will continue. It will now be baked into the revised PHB. Likely they'll power creep the base classes even more so that it will pull the power gamers in. It's a great marketing strategy to get people to buy the new stuff. It's terrible game design, however. I don't like feats no longer being optional. As much as I like the idea of ASI being flexible, I don't think the background is the right place for them. While it makes sense, they should more rightly be with race or class...and as I think through this stuff part of me is boggled at why I'm bothering.

If I want to play D&D I have B/X, AD&D, DCC, and OSE Advanced among so many others. There's so much great original old-school and OSR content out there. More than I'll ever be able to actually use at the table. And yet, whatever new edition of D&D WotC puts out is the supermassive black hole at the center of the RPG industry's galaxy.
 
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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Um, why with the, not exactly persecution complex but, the bizarre antagonism and expectation that there will be something new for fans of a game that hasn’t been published in 40, 30, or 20 years?

it‘s obvious if you didn’t like 5e, you’re not going to like what comes next, as they’re pretty explicit about it being more of the same.

it’ts real bizarre to me that “they don’t care about fans of older editions” is a thing. Like, it’s like complaining in an Apple forum about, another year, another missed opportunity to release an update for the IIc operating system, why doesn’t Apple care about fans of their legacy products?

WotC has done more for fans of long forgotten products than most companies, they’re putting out pdfs and PoD for tons of old stuff that only weirdos play any more. Saves you the effort of tracking down free online scans of them.

you’ll always be welcomed back into the fold if you ever want to stop being like those weirdo Japanese soldiers who fought in the hills for 20 years after the war was over. Wanna play the game we’re playing now?

except you’re not alone, there’s plenty of people who want to play the game you’re playing and are making new stuff for it. Have fun.

just stop bothering people with moping sadness about the equivalent of Nintendo not releasing new SNES carts.
Mod Note:

Comparing other players to the post-WW2 Japanese “weirdos” is wrong on so many levels. Accusing someone of having a “persecution complex” is also a bit of a personal attack.

Howabout you reconsidering the rhetoric you use when posting on ENWorld? That’d be great.
 

I'm not sure if I'm a grognard, though my user name is pretty close!

I started my D&D experience with 3.5. I loved it, problems and all. I eventually switched to 1E Pathfinder, which is now my preferred set of rules.

5E has always been "meh" for me. It just wasn't the edition for me. Which is sort of my view of 5.5/D&Done/whatever. So I'm not too vested in the changes and new rules. If someone in my group wants to run a game using that rule set, awesome! I'll play! I just don't see myself rushing out to buy the books.
 

Mark Hope

Adventurer
I'll no doubt treat 6e (or whatever it ends up being called) the same as I treat 5e - a source of cool ideas to steal, art to use, resources to plunder. It's all meat for the all-devouring machine that is my wildly houseruled AD&D2e system that keeps my games chugging along. In the larger scheme of things, a new edition should be interesting one way or the other. Glad that there is a new edition for people to dive into. Equally glad to be a weirdo still playing older editions ;)
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I was using "friends" as an analogy for the greater D&D community, rather than referring to one's specific personal friends.

I've never understood the groupthink among so many people that says they have to have the latest new thing even if it doesn't function as well as what they already have; and this is true not just of D&D editions but also of cars, technology, fashion, and a gajillion other things. Corporations love it as it keeps the treadmill going, but it often makes no sense for the consumer/end user.

Someone deciding to stay put with what they have gets, in effect, left behind as the spotlight of official support and hype moves on to the newer version.
Oh I understand and am guilty of it. With some things, like my phone, I usually am one or two iterations behind. I am happy to let others discover and help workout the bugs and I will wait until the improvements will be meaningful to me.

But for hobby things, like VTTs, I like to play around with the newest versions, features, and cool-looking community mods that I don't need and may never use.

I guess I am kinda like that with my D&D. I buy all the new rules and monsters books so that I have them in D&D Beyond. I generally do not buy adventure modules from WotC anymore but I will often buy just the character classes, backgrounds, monsters, and magic items -- again, just to have them in D&D Beyond.
 

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