D&D 5E How Can D&D Next Win You Over?

Harlock

First Post
I ask not to start an edition war. Hopefully everyone can just let people express their opinions and leave it at that, recognizing people do have different opinions and goals, no matter how unrealistic they may seem to you.

For me, I am currently converting my game to Castles and Crusades. The Edition merry-go-round is too much for me anymore. For me to pick up D&D Next it has to be simple: easy to learn and teach. It cannot just emulate B/X or 2nd Edition. It has to be better than those because I already have those. I would need a published commitment from WotC that they are sticking with D&D Next for a decade, at least. I want more fluff and inspirational materials than I do "crunch". I want settings that read like novellas with a rich history into which I can tap. I feel too old to keep converting to and learning new systems.

In that regard, D&D Next is really going to have to come through on the promise of modular expansion. I don't need another rules set in 6 years. If changes are to be made to the game, I want those to be implemented through modules. D&D Next will have to come through on its implied promise of respecting and acknowledging its past as well as building its future. Yes, that is a lot to ask of any system. Yes, I know I am probably setting myself up for heartache. But, the game can still get some or most of this right for me to at least try it.

So, what about you? What vain ambitions do you desire out of D&D Next? What promises does WotC have to deliver on? Can you be won over, and how?
 

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I want flexibility and to play the game I want. I want to be able to make the game fit the adventure I want to run, not change the adventure I want to run to accommodate the quirks of the system.

For example, I changed how I wrote adventures for 4th Edition. I stopped doing investigative modules or overland travel adventures because of how potent the PCs were if they fought just one creature in a day.
I had to frequently stop and wonder "how am I going to add 3-5 treasure parcels to this adventure?" or "how can I add monsters to this fight for the appropriate amount of xp?"

As a second example, my forthcoming game (starting in two weeks) is a Pathfinder game. The PCs use NPC classes only and the basic stat array (13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8). Because the game is set in Ravenloft and I want them to be afraid: I don't want them to think like heroes or assume they have the advantage and charge into combat.
I'm further customizing the game with Armour as DR rules and wound/vitality from Ultimate Combat as well as a modification of the Defence system from Unearthed Arcana and d20 Modern.

While I expect 5e to come out of the gate with a very simple version of the rules, and expansions that let you tweak the game into something closer to 3e and 4e, I hope they'll have even more customization after.
Where I can play something like my Ravenloft game. Or just as easily play a 1e mod just updating the monster statblocks and DCs and not rebuilding every encounter. Or let me play Rise of the Runelords just doing the same.

That's how they can win me over.
 

Frostmarrow

First Post
Earlier, both Warhammer and D&D seemed to scoop ladels full of saga from the old cauldron on to my plate. Where Warhammer kept doing it and adding spice to the old recipes D&D tried very hard to cook up original stories or by mixing old tales that wouldn't amalgamate well. Where Warhammer kept a bookmark in the Grimm brother's books and the legends of Egypt D&D begun internalizing the blander movies of Hollywood and the poorest excuses of inhouse authors' unpublished manuscripts. To me D&D took the wrong turn. Originality is good in science fiction. In fantasy it's better to stick to the sources. The best way to win me over is to go back to what actually works story-wise, distilled by generations of storytelling and leave the murdering robots, beatific horned demons, and the double-is-better logic where it belongs. In direct to DvD.
 



Harlock

First Post
They'd have to come out and tell us the whole thing was really a huge overdone April Fool's Joke and then show me the actual game.

Mind being a bit more constructive? I don't know exactly what you mean with this statement. Are you saying you hope 4e still remains a relevant choice and playstyle with the new edition? Or that the playtest doesn't offer anything you'd like to play. If it's the later, what would the playtest need to become to get you interested?
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
No concrete answers from me:

It has to feel like D&D.

It has to be flexible enough to support a wide variety of playstyles.

It has to be well-thought out on a crunch AND fluff level.

No sacrificing of sacred cows- or resurrecting them- without damn good reasons.
 

DaveMage

Slumbering in Tsar
I doubt it will win me over, but the only way I would even consider looking at it is if I could use my 1E, 2E, 3.xE, and Pathfinder adventure materials with it with very easy/minimal conversion.

(How's that for an impossible task?)
 

Ahnehnois

First Post
If it let me build every character I could think of from a D&D context, and adjudicate every situation that's likely to come up, but do so more simply and with easier customization than 3.5, I'd consider it.
 

pauljathome

First Post
One of two ways

1) Be so successful that I have no choice but to play it if I want to play with new groups
2) Provide me something better for me and my groups than the current alternatives. Where better is, of course, as defined by me and my groups.

As the following probably shows, I'm not optimistic that it will succeed in winning me over. I haven't yet made up my mind though.

I don't really care about modularity. I don't really care if it unifies the base. I most certainly don't want to have to select 14 different options in order to turn it into a game that is only then about as good as what I am currently playing. I care about how well it satisfies MY goals and needs in a well tested and comprehensive manner.

I can't really say what the above amounts to. I can tell you that it is NOT :

1st edition feel (been there, done that, moved on)
Untested rule modules
20th level characters challenged by orcs
characters not gaining appreciably in non combat ways as they level up
insanely unbalanced characters
insanely balanced characters (tradeoffs are good)
boring and deadly combats
 

Cadfan

First Post
Its fairly unlikely that I'll be going to 5e. To do so, they'd have to give me examples of things I could do in 5e that I can't do in 4e. It doesn't have to be something like "Play a [race] [class] [background]," where that combination isn't very worthwhile in 4e. It could be something like "Run faster combats, with an appropriate amount of tactical depth to the time spent in combat at the game table."

It would have to be something that I value, of course. But I value basically anything about good rpg design, with the caveat that I am allergic to nostalgia.
 


TwinBahamut

First Post
I think they'd have to do a new total 180 on the direction they've taken 5E so far in order to really sell me on the game...

I want a game that takes the core of 4E, and works to improve its many flaws to create a better game from 4E's solid foundation. For example, the entire power system could be thoroughly revised and improved, various subsystems like Paragon Paths and such would need to be completely replaced, magic items could be improved by reducing magic item dependency to the limit, and so on. The total removal of "per day" abilities and mechanics would be a great thing, as well.

I don't want to see the continued use of the mechanical and mathematical foundation from pre-3E days, because it simply doesn't work. I can tolerate a lot of different things I dislike from older editions, but the game seriously needs to have the math right before I'll consider it. A large amount of transparency with the mechanics and a lack of reliance on DM fiat are important, too.

Most of all, I just want to see something new. Something never done before with D&D. Something that was never seen in 3E or 4E and something that can't be provided by the countless competing alternatives to D&D. I want a version of D&D that will let me play as a werewolf from level 1, as a knight who rides a dragon into battle (using the RAW!), or as a mighty warrior of myth who can defeat a thousand armed soldiers in a single battle. I want a game that brings more fun classes like the Warden, Shaman, or Warlord to the forefront or brings in mechanics as fun and flavorful as the styles of the Book of the Nine Swords. I want to see something exciting.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
I want a version of D&D that will let me play as a werewolf from level 1, as a knight who rides a dragon into battle (using the RAW!), or as a mighty warrior of myth who can defeat a thousand armed soldiers in a single battle. I want a game that brings more fun classes like the Warden, Shaman, or Warlord to the forefront or brings in mechanics as fun and flavorful as the styles of the Book of the Nine Swords.

*cough*HERO*cough*

;)
 

So, what about you? What vain ambitions do you desire out of D&D Next? What promises does WotC have to deliver on? Can you be won over, and how?
It's really very simple. All 5e has to do is be non-trivially superior to 4e. It's not that hard. 1e was better than 0D&D, 2e was a modest upgrade on 1e, 3e fixed a few of the most nagging problems of classic D&D and 4e further improved upon that. 5e need only continue the trend. Of course, half-eds haven't faired so well, 3.5 didn't really improve on 3.0, it was just pointlessly different. Essentials was, if anything, worse than 4e.

5e just has to do the whole-ed thing, and find things to do that it can do /better/ than D&D has done in the past.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
1e was better than 0D&D, 2e was a modest upgrade on 1e, 3e fixed a few of the most nagging problems of classic D&D and 4e further improved upon that. 5e need only continue the trend. Of course, half-eds haven't faired so well, 3.5 didn't really improve on 3.0, it was just pointlessly different. Essentials was, if anything, worse than 4e.

Really?

I disagree with goodly portions of your statement, cut that's probably best for another thread.
 

GX.Sigma

Adventurer
D&D Next has already won me over.

It's simple, it's quick, and it feels like D&D, and those are the only things I really care about.
 

Someone

Adventurer
Certainly it's not goin to win me with nostalgia and old feel alone, specially when there already are two dozen retroclones, many of them free, which I can use to try to recreate the days when I was 15.

At that age, the murderhobo party, the nonsensical dungeons, the gotcha traps, the unhelpful deranged NPC hermits or the private jokes ("I attack the gazebo") had their charm. That's the old school charm, but trying to recreate that now would be a disaster for the same reasons I may remember fondly my first car but I'd rather die than buy another of the same model.
 

arscott

First Post
In order to win me over, Next would have to meaningfully address all of the problems with 3e and earlier that were addressed by 4e.

4e had a solution to the power disparity between casters and non-casters
4e combat math worked all the way from level one up into epic.
4e had monsters that worked within the action economy, whether the party was fighting one creature or a horde.

Now, just because 4e had solutions to 3e's problems, doesn't mean they had the best solutions. I'd be fine if DDN solved these problems in entirely different ways than 4e. I don't necessarily want to see AEDU return, for example.

But I have the sense that the DDN designers don't care about those issues at all. It seems like, because 4e wasn't a success, they decided that all of the problems that 4e was trying to fix aren't really problems after all. Unless the design of DDN can convince me otherwise, I'm skipping it.
 


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