5.5E Has the new "5.5e" stolen our crunch?

Stalker0

Legend
So exciting times with the announcement of the "new" or "half new" version of 5th edition.

So one thing that has defined 5e is its slow pace of crunch. We have gotten two main player extensions (Xanathars/Tashas) and two main monster extensions (Volos/Mordenkainen's). The various other splats have given us a tidbit here or there, but these are the "official crunch books" we have gotten.

So with the new announcement, we will clearly get new crunch. Updated classes, spells, feats, etc. But it also seems like this is more of a reset of existing crunch than it is truly new things. Monsters are being updated....but how many more monsters are we getting? We are getting updated classes....but are we getting new ones?

In part it does seem like this semi-edition shift is once again slowing the crunch train even further, and I'm not sure I'm ok with that. I think 5e made the right decision to slow things down a bit, quality over quantity.....but at the same time after this many years I could stand to see a few more crunch books, and I worry that they are replacing that with.....well, replacements of all the stuff we already have.
 

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Yaarel

Mind Mage
I expect and hope:

We will see the content of the anniversary-edition of the core books, before the books themselves arrive. It will be in the form of UA articles and more "official crunch" books, in order to get feedback and see what the gaming communities either love or can live with.

My thoughts are, they will allow less popular options in the 2014 core books to quietly go obsolete, while adding more recent options that prove more popular.

The anniversary is still about three years away. I get the impression, the designers want to do it right.
 
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Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Hasbro says ...


5pcat1.jpg
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Lots of setting material over the next 3 years! I guess they probably have less crunch than other books?
 



Bolares

Hero
I expect and hope:

We will see the content of the anniversary-edition of the core books, before the books themselves arrive. It will be in the form of UA articles and more "official crunch" books, in order to get feedback and see what the gaming communities either love or can live with.

My thoughts are, they will allow less popular options in the 2014 core books to quietly go obsolete, while adding more recent options that prove more popular.

The anniversary is still about three years away. I get the impression, the designers want to do it right.
A Next Dnd Next of some kind :p
 


Laurefindel

Legend
I am more than fine with an update of the crunch we have and as little new crunch as possible for the new 50 anniversary core books.

D&D, even with the core books only, is far from a system-lite game, and provides more options than many other RPGs. Having shiny new things is fun, but the fact that 5e has avoided system bloat that long is what kept me in the game. As far as I’m concerned, we’re already bordering the point of « too many options to keep each individual option meaningful ».

i love setting-specific options but with their multiverse approach, it’s harder to keep options somewhat thematically limited.
 

For what I guess and understand from now, a CR 5 encounter designed in 5.0 will still be playable and challenging in 5.5
New monster should be easier to play and a bit more reliable in fight, but not to invalidate old monsters.
Same thing for NPCs or old PCs.
I guess for a reset like the 4ed essentials but no much.
 

ad_hoc

(he/they)
I'm good with player expansions. I'd be happy if we didn't get another one until after 2024.

What I do want is a Planescape adventure.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Or more setting specific crunch.

Putting crunch into setting books may get around the feeling of bloat, that the crunch is somehow "required", or otherwise presents a barrier to adoption by its magnitude.

Folks who really want it can steal it out of the setting books, but others can more easily ignore it if they aren't playing in that setting.
 

Mercurius

Legend
We've known for awhile that WotC has consciously taken a minimalist approach to splats (i.e. crunch-focused books); I don't see why they would change that approach.

I tend to believe that crunch minimalism (relative to the last few editions) is part of 5E's runaway success. Maybe not the main reason, but certainly an important secondary one.

Do you remember that talk in 2009ish about D&D needing an easier "on-ramp" for new players? That lead to Essentials, although for 4E it was too little/late, and/or didn't address other problems. But they took that basic idea and streamlined 5E, then decided to put out splat books on a slow drip rather than a deluge, which they seemingly rightfully believed would make the whole game less intimidating for new players.

And, of course, the focus of 5E has been on story and worlds, not customization and endless options like 3.5 or Pathfinder. That is even more central to the edition's success, and will continue to be the "spine" of the foreseeable future.

5E has a huge and diverse fan base, probably the bulk of whom are what might be called "casual players." It is no longer carried by a diehard core, who generally like more over less in terms of supplement options. This is not to say that the diehard core isn't an important component, just as DMs have always made up a sizable proportion of sales as they tend to buy a lot more books than casual players.

Fewer splats also means a less wobbly game, with fewer broken parts. A revised version at ten years makes perfect sense: it allows WotC to clean up the fiddly bits, and fix at least some of the broken parts. It also allows them to do a "micro-reset" with crunch.

One question I have is if we're going to see a similar player's crunch book to Monsters of the Multiverse; where that book essentially replaces Volo's and/or Mordenkainen's, such a hypothetical player's splat would do the same for Xanathar's and Tasha's, with some elements folded into the revised PHB itself).

And if they do that, will it be in 2023 to preview 5.5, or in 2025, to be the first splat for the revised core? I could see them going either way.
 

Composer99

Adventurer
Theros had a piety subsystem, Ghosts of Saltmarsh had rules for seaborne adventure, and before it went "core" in Tasha's, the Artificer was, in effect, a setting-specific class in the Eberron book. The Ravenloft book also has setting subsystems that you could adapt for other games.

So I can see setting books being a way of introducing game structures, player character options, and the like, in a way that doesn't come across as overloading the game with such content.
 

J-H

Hero
There are over 100 subclasses. I'd say the place we're missing the most "crunch" is in magic item frequency and variety, but I also find that super-easy to homebrew or steal from other editions/systems/games/etc.
 

OB1

Jedi Master
I am more than fine with an update of the crunch we have and as little new crunch as possible for the new 50 anniversary core books.

D&D, even with the core books only, is far from a system-lite game, and provides more options than many other RPGs. Having shiny new things is fun, but the fact that 5e has avoided system bloat that long is what kept me in the game. As far as I’m concerned, we’re already bordering the point of « too many options to keep each individual option meaningful ».

i love setting-specific options but with their multiverse approach, it’s harder to keep options somewhat thematically limited.
IMO this is the point of the refreshed Core books, to work as a new point of entry using the best/most-popular of the crunch that has come out so far, so that new players aren't immediately overwhelmed with having to purchase a dozen books to get the experience that long time players are already having. It's a new baseline for new players.
 

MoonSong

Rules-lawyering drama queen but not a munchkin
There are over 100 subclasses. I'd say the place we're missing the most "crunch" is in magic item frequency and variety, but I also find that super-easy to homebrew or steal from other editions/systems/games/etc.
Subclasses aren't equally distributed across classes. If they were, each class would have about 7 or 8 subclasses, but some have a lot more than that, and others a lot less. Also, take into account that for some classes (like wizard and bard), the effect of subclasses is limited, and for others, most of the meat of the class is in the subclass and the effect of the subclass is archetype defining. Those classes (cleric/warlock/sorcerer) need way more subclasses than what they already have. there might be cluter and chaff in some classes -like in the above mentioned wizard-, while in others we haven't even scratched the surface.
 

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