How does a New Setting with the One D&D Origins and Classes look?

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
So 5e is getting to a point where it will be redesigned before it get a new setting built around the ideas and mechanics of 5e. Now One D&D will b a thing and by continuing of the 5e, it will be too long in the tooth to not have a setting with its ideals.

So as of the September Playtest...

How does a setting look with Ardlings as a base assumption in the world?

How does a setting look with Dragonborns as a common occurrence and global power player?

How does Dwarves and Halflings having no origin based differences alter their role in a setting? What new kinds of Dwarves and Halflings might emerge?

How does all Elves and Gnomes having magic in their lineage alter their image in a setting?

How does Orcs being a base player option equal in importance as dwarves and elves alter this setting?

What does Tieflings having 2 more core legacies mean for the setting?

How does a world look if aspects found in 1st level feats are common enough to be found in adventurers?


To me the biggest new aspect that would differentiate a De D&D setting is 1st level feats. Other editions had 1st level feats but 5e does them so much differently. The magic one being Magic Initiate as a 1st level feat and part of a background. This really is huge. A first level feat is something everyone could get. Before you had to be level 4 or some super ambitious human to get magic that low level. Magic as a background as simple as an acolyte or guide means that magic is widespread enough that everyone could have some but not enough that its everywhere. Some random farmer might cast magic missile on some wild beasts because a wizard spent a week resting at their home and taught him a spell as a thank you. That and a possible normalization of ardlings, dragonborn, orcs, and tieflings means the perceptions of the setting's people would be different. A common peasant would not bat an eye to the sight of a dragonborn soldier or a town guard casting 1st level spells of a cutpurse.

"Well, my lord sent you all to see me? I'm just a cook. Oh. that. Well Do you remember when that Cult for that Fish Goddess swept through the Western Duchies? I kind of got brush up in that too. I'm not proud of it but they teach me a few things. So I know that spell. Bring your captive in. I'll do it since my lord sent you. Just stop eating the apples."

Another factor is Bounded Accuracy. 5e and One D&D will be built with the idea that AC and ACs only get so high so amost anyone can hit anyone else. That with a heavy desire for the return of the 4e minion rules by many could mean a heavy push of "Big monster with 3-5 henchman/handlers" play. One big monster to be the focus of play and a few minor threats to divert attention. With One D&D likely having celestial, fiend, and fey elements in the origins and having a push for formarly monstrous races on both sides of the screen, a setting can really run with "cultists summon/call/create a monster" play.

With the different styles of fantasy of the base 5e and possible One D&D playtest rules and the popularity of certain types of fiction, I could see a good base for an official magic intrigue setting where different factions compete for the loyalty and attention of adventuring parties. Dungeons in this setting would be the bases of opposing factions and manned with the officiers, henchmen, and monsters following the factions theme.

So what are your thoughts on a possible new setting for One D&D using its design goals and 5e design?
 

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Yaarel

Mind Mage
The One D&D setting is too depend on "a god did it". Even to the point of divinely ordained racism in the sense of bioessentialism, and possibly fantasy racism, such as cultural hostility against tieflings. The game fundamentally changes into "Dungeons and Deities".
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
In the effort to avoid reallife racist connotations, it is probably worthwhile to make orcs culturally express Intelligence and Charisma. Thus, the Orc race can prevent being stereotyped as one of the "savage natives" of the 1800s racism.

I like animistic and shamanistic reallife cultures. In D&D, there needs to be respectful, multicultural, and modern ways to characterize these kinds of worldviews.
 

aco175

Legend
We already had Waterdeep as a more cosmopolitan setting or 'Mos Eisley'. The published books might try to show more of this and have the things you mention more in the new books. I'm not sure how much it will change with races though. With the default still being human, maybe it will not be though, 70% of people will still be human and small towns should still have mostly human and a few others like it tends to have now. PCs are likely still a wide makeup for races, but local areas might not.

Part of me hopes Ardlings are removed somewhere in the playtest.
 

GMMichael

Guide of Modos
A common peasant would not bat an eye to the sight of a dragonborn soldier or a town guard casting 1st level spells of a cutpurse.
This nicely wraps up why I haven't bought any D&D books since 3e. It's not medieval fantasy; it's D&D fantasy.

There could be a base setting, but if I were WotC I wouldn't worry about it. "Providing options," ( D&D reveal video) means selling multiple settings, and multiple alternative PHBs that offer different sets of classes, and origins and heritages and legacies (whatever) so players can choose (buy) to avoid the train wreck of a setting to which 1D&D is now headed.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
This nicely wraps up why I haven't bought any D&D books since 3e. It's not medieval fantasy; it's D&D fantasy.

It hasn't been medieval fantasy for a loooong loooong time. Before 3e.

DM, players, and designers have been adding weird stuff to the dungeons for decades now. Then some want to pretend none of it leaks out.

WOTC has officially supported only 3 non-MTG settings since the start of 3e (Eberron, Nentir Vale, Exandria). All three are pretty much "You know all the magic and nonsense you all keep adding to the game. This is how a setting would look if it layed on top the land".

So eventually, there will be a 5e one. And based on the rules of 5e and OD&D, it wont be generic medieval fantasy.
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
There could be a base setting, but if I were WotC I wouldn't worry about it. "Providing options," ( D&D reveal video) means selling multiple settings, and multiple alternative PHBs that offer different sets of classes, and origins and heritages and legacies (whatever) so players can choose (buy) to avoid the train wreck of a setting to which 1D&D is now headed.
I agree here.

The "core" Players Handbook can be: human only, setting agnostic, with the only default assumption being magic exists and is "medievalesque". This Players Handbook has all of the rules that are necessary to play D&D. (The DMs Guide has variant rules.)

Then there can be a Forgotten Realms Guide, a Ravnica Guide, a Dragonlance Guide, an Eberron Guide, and so on. Each setting has its own races and setting assumptions.

Of course, a DM can mix-and-match from these settings freely.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
We already had Waterdeep as a more cosmopolitan setting or 'Mos Eisley'. The published books might try to show more of this and have the things you mention more in the new books. I'm not sure how much it will change with races though. With the default still being human, maybe it will not be though, 70% of people will still be human and small towns should still have mostly human and a few others like it tends to have now. PCs are likely still a wide makeup for races, but local areas might not.

Part of me hopes Ardlings are removed somewhere in the playtest.
I dunno. I feel a lean that no settings will be more about full on racial nations and them having interactions with other racial nations.

The background sysem pushes that the elven society has orcish smiths, farmers, mages, priests, musicians, etc for your orc PC to come from. Your PCs origin no longer has to be an anomaly, just your PC's power is.
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
I dunno. I feel a lean that no settings will be more about full on racial nations and them having interactions with other racial nations.

The background sysem pushes that the elven society has orcish smiths, farmers, mages, priests, musicians, etc for your orc PC to come from. Your PCs origin no longer has to be an anomaly, just your PC's power is.
Looking at the old scool 1e-2e "valley elf": it conveys that elves, gnomes, and humans are all sharing the same Valley of the Mage culture. The wizardry is prestigious. Any of these three races might be wizards there. It seems humans founded the culture but the other races became membbers of it.

This might work as a model for 5e cultures.
 


aco175

Legend
The background sysem pushes that the elven society has orcish smiths, farmers, mages, priests, musicians, etc for your orc PC to come from. Your PCs origin no longer has to be an anomaly, just your PC's power is.
I'm not looking for this myself, but we will see how far things go before player backlash.

I might be able to take an orc PC and come up with a reason why they have an elf background, but a whole bunch of them just waters things down and they might just go with the Pathfinder generation of just picking from a list of traits.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I'm not looking for this myself, but we will see how far things go before player backlash.

I might be able to take an orc PC and come up with a reason why they have an elf background, but a whole bunch of them just waters things down and they might just go with the Pathfinder generation of just picking from a list of traits.
There's no elf background in 5e nor 5.5e.

There might be an elf sage wizard. The point now is there will require a setting where an orc sage wizard makes sense. Or an tiefling sailor fighter or dwarf guide druid.
 

Orc sage wizard. The country of Ber was once dominated by dragon tyrants, but they were slain or driven away, and now our orc hero is a graduate of a young university that took the hoarded magical knowledge of the old enslavers and shared it with the people. Our wizard is driven to teach and inspire his people to make the best of their hard-won freedom.

Tiefling sailor fighter. The nation of Danor was cursed centuries ago at the catastrophic end of a holy war, turning many survivors into tieflings. Our tiefling hero is a descendant of a group that fled the post-collapse chaos and settled in a nearby archipelago. His parents own a farmstead, but he was drawn to the sea, hoping to find glory by joining the Danoran navy. His family disapproves, seeing their old homeland as a place of scorn and failure, but our hero wants to be part of something greater.

Dwarf guide druid. Though officially the war known as the Siege of the Shawl ended a century ago with the victory of Drakr over the tundra elves and frost giants, pockets of resistance persist in the Shawl Mountains. Our dwarf hero was young when her father brought her on an patrol to find those rebels, and when the troop was caught in a blizzard, the rest of the group fell to a frost giant ambush. But a druid among the giants spared our hero, and they took her as their own.

She grew up resentful, and perhaps only learned the magic of the snowy peaks in hopes she might one day flee home. But by a small miracle, in the two decades since she joined the giants, a new leader among the dwarves of Drakr has sued for peace. Our hero is one of the few who truly believes there is a chance for the two groups to put decades of bloodshed behind them, and now she serves uncertainly as a guide for travelers between the lands of the two peoples.
 

I'm going to preface this by saying that trying to design a setting round the mechanics for PCs is a terrible idea.

How does a setting look with Ardlings as a base assumption in the world?
No different than it would with Aasimar or Tieflings, or the Deva from 4E.
How does a setting look with Dragonborns as a common occurrence and global power player?
Why is this an assumption? It was in 4E, and several setting already have it, but I think the default assumption is that they're not common.
How does Dwarves and Halflings having no origin based differences alter their role in a setting? What new kinds of Dwarves and Halflings might emerge?
Since much of the linage differences were cultural, removing them was probably the best option. New types are unlikely to appear, and those that do are not likely to have much impact.
How does all Elves and Gnomes having magic in their lineage alter their image in a setting?
This is already pretty much the default, so no real changes.
How does Orcs being a base player option equal in importance as dwarves and elves alter this setting?
I'm not a fan, but orcs since they've removed the "evil" aspect of orcs, they become no different than the other "humans in funny hats."
What does Tieflings having 2 more core legacies mean for the setting?
It forces the acknowledgement of the default cosmology, since you have all three fiend types represented.
How does a world look if aspects found in 1st level feats are common enough to be found in adventurers?
This shouldn't impact the world at all, unless you follow the 3E philosophy of giving every NPC a level. Since 4E and 5E have wisely moved away from this, it's irrelevant.
 

the Jester

Legend
WOTC has officially supported only 3 non-MTG settings since the start of 3e (Eberron, Nentir Vale, Exandria). All three are pretty much "You know all the magic and nonsense you all keep adding to the game. This is how a setting would look if it layed on top the land".
Ravenloft, Greyhawk (Ghosts of Saltmarsh), and Spelljammer, at the least, would like a word, but I don't know where you see official support for the Nentir Vale in 5e.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I'm going to preface this by saying that trying to design a setting round the mechanics for PCs is a terrible idea.
It's more designing a setting that doesn't contradict the PHB.

It doesn't make financial sense to sell a core book that allows a Orc Paladin with Magic initiate Arcane and sell mostly setting books than ban a Orc Paladin with Magic Initiate Arcane.

"Well you can homebrew a setting"
Sure. But then WOTC makes zero dollars off the homebrew setting book they aren't selling that supports their new PHB, MM, and DMG.
 


Yaarel

Mind Mage
Regarding the elf-orc mix, in one of my settings, this is what the "grugach" are. In any case, remote wood elves and remote orcs sometimes need to cooperate in order to survive extreme weather in the wilderness. Some communities join together.
 

the Jester

Legend
Ravenloft, Greyhawk, and Spelljammer are all older than 3e. None of them are new nor built on 5e's assumptions.
Which isn't what I was replying to. The exact claim was, "WOTC has officially supported only 3 non-MTG settings since the start of 3e", which is absolutely false. And I didn't even address non-5e treatments; if you include those, Nentir Vale gets in, as does Dark Sun.

Even so, I'd say that the 5e versions of (especially) Ravenloft and (a bit less so, but still) Spelljammer show a lot of 5e assumptions in how they're built.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Which isn't what I was replying to. The exact claim was, "WOTC has officially supported only 3 non-MTG settings since the start of 3e", which is absolutely false. And I didn't even address non-5e treatments; if you include those, Nentir Vale gets in, as does Dark Sun.

Even so, I'd say that the 5e versions of (especially) Ravenloft and (a bit less so, but still) Spelljammer show a lot of 5e assumptions in how they're built.
I figured by the context of the discussion that I was talking about new settings. WOTC only officially produced 4 new non-MTG settings since 2000.

Ravenloft and Spelljammer also barely count as your PC only always makes sense because you technically can come from another setting. There isn't a setting that runs on 5e character creation without using a bridge of your PC being from another setting. Your PC being a strange anomaly is written in the base assumption.
 

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