How many C&Ds has WotC issued for 5E?

Bunker

Hero
Curious really. I suspet they're all for character creator and other automated software or apps. At least the ones I can recall are. Is that the case?

Some of them came back with SRD material. Seems the pattern is automated apps which use non-SRD stuff gets C&D, comes back with just SRD stuff.

One I can think of are -

Spellbook Generator (Sep 2014)
http://5espellbook.azurewebsites.net

Dnd Tools (APril 2015)
http://ww38.dndtools.eu (URL now dead)

OrcPub (still up but non SRD stuff removed)
https://orcpub2.com

d20 fight Club (Feb 2015)
Mobile app (think it's SRD only now?)

Pathguy (late 2015)
http://www.pathguy.com/monsters.htm (back SRD only)

ForgedAnvil's Character Generator (last month here on ENWorld)

Sure there's more I don't know of.
 

log in or register to remove this ad


That's only the ones we know of because the creators commented. We have no idea of the ones where the site just closed or the program vanished.

Seems like a smaller list than 4e, which had a few bog names (Ema's Character sheets - which I still miss - and MasterPlan).
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Given how many official licensees the work with, any if those solutions that would be willing to pay would probably be given a license to use non-SRD material
 

Seems like a smaller list than 4e, which had a few bog names (Ema's Character sheets - which I still miss - and MasterPlan).

The difference is that 4E had, at least by this long after release, a real, solid, official digital alternative with a very reasonable subscription fee. Whereas 5E has D&D Beyond, which is trash compared to the 4E offering, on a variety of levels - not least that in addition to the sub fee you have to re-purchase every book you've already purchased physically, and if I understand it correctly, you don't even get PDFs or offline-viewable content versions of the stuff you're paying full, physical-copy price for (it seems like there's some sort of half-arsed beta implementation that might do that, but it's clearly rather dubious).
 

SkidAce

Legend
Supporter
... (it seems like there's some sort of half-arsed beta implementation that might do that, but it's clearly rather dubious).

Works great on my tablet and phone.

20180311_110202.jpg
 

The difference is that 4E had, at least by this long after release, a real, solid, official digital alternative with a very reasonable subscription fee.
This long after release, 4e has two having cancelled the first downloadable program and restarting with the online one that never reached the same levels of functionality and was never able to incorporate houserules or homebrew.
(Actually... by this point in 4e's life... the 5e playtest had been announced.)

Plus, they tried to get one out earlier, near the launch of the game. DungeonScape. But they partnered with a company that over-promised and simply could not deliver. I'm not going to fault WotC for waiting until they could partner with someone more reputable who was able to actually get things done.

Whereas 5E has D&D Beyond, which is trash compared to the 4E offering, on a variety of levels - not least that in addition to the sub fee you have to re-purchase every book you've already purchased physically, and if I understand it correctly, you don't even get PDFs or offline-viewable content versions of the stuff you're paying full, physical-copy price for (it seems like there's some sort of half-arsed beta implementation that might do that, but it's clearly rather dubious).
Having to re-buy every book you want is standard now. The 4e model of getting access to everything was problematic, allowing people to skip buying the physical books and just pay a small subscription. Even Pathfinder's comparative product (Hero Labs by Lone Wolf Inc) requires you to (re)buy every book.

D&D Beyond has improved in leaps and bounds since it launched a little over six months ago. You might need to go back and check it out again.
 

This long after release, 4e has two having cancelled the first downloadable program and restarting with the online one that never reached the same levels of functionality and was never able to incorporate houserules or homebrew.
(Actually... by this point in 4e's life... the 5e playtest had been announced.)

Plus, they tried to get one out earlier, near the launch of the game. DungeonScape. But they partnered with a company that over-promised and simply could not deliver. I'm not going to fault WotC for waiting until they could partner with someone more reputable who was able to actually get things done.

The second DDI was great.

I dunno if you actually ran 4E, but I did, and it was tremendous. Countless hours were saved by having a character builder that worked really well (managing to do things Beyond's one can't handle), a monster builder that was really fast and effective (if Beyond has one, and I presume it does, I can't find it).

I'm not sure why you're claiming it "couldn't incorporate homebrew", because it sure as hell could in terms of monsters and so on. It couldn't incorporate homebrew rules, maybe, but I didn't use any in 4E, because honestly, it didn't really need any (and the big flaws it did have couldn't corrected by anything like that, sadly).

Re: DungeonScape, I am going to fault WotC for taking so long. It's not like they didn't have good choices - they absolutely did. They consistently made bad choices with licensing of D&D though, and Beyond appears to be another one of those.

Having to re-buy every book you want is standard now. The 4e model of getting access to everything was problematic, allowing people to skip buying the physical books and just pay a small subscription. Even Pathfinder's comparative product (Hero Labs by Lone Wolf Inc) requires you to (re)buy every book.

Re: PF, does it require you to buy them full-real-world-price (i.e. Amazon price - Amazon own Curse and thus Beyond, note)? Does it give you PDFs/offline copies? If doesn't charge you full real price, and/or does give you PDFs, you're being disingenuous, and that sucks.

Also, I dunno what kind of wizardry we used because I don't run PF, but I paid nothing and got to use a character builder that had all the options I needed build my character last time I played PF (mid-2016). It didn't appear to be an official one either, but hadn't been C&D'd or anything.

D&D Beyond has improved in leaps and bounds since it launched a little over six months ago. You might need to go back and check it out again.

I'm literally on the site right now... that's why I was discussing it. It's pretty pathetic. It won't even show you what content it's not showing you, as it were. That's just incompetent! It's slick, but I'd rather have functional than slick, and it's behind where even the earliest iterations of the DDI were in functionality.

Further, it doesn't give you any PDFs - that may well be "On WotC", but it also means charging large one-off charges is just unreasonable, and charging the entire real-world price of a book you can't use offline is just laughable.
 

The second DDI was great.

I dunno if you actually ran 4E, but I did, and it was tremendous. Countless hours were saved by having a character builder that worked really well (managing to do things Beyond's one can't handle),
Are you comparing the tools at the end of their life to D&D Beyond, which has barely been out for six months? Shouldn't you be comparing each toolset during that same window?

My first 4e game died before the second tools were released. I do know that they completely effed my game by cancelling the downloadable builder, as my group was level 10 and brought in a replacement player and I really, really needed the Essentials cleric, but they held that back for the online tools, which took several more months to come out.
It was also extremely problematic, being a Windows only site that required Silverlight to run, making it useless if you tried to use it on a cellphone, let alone one of the newly released iPad. The DDI site was a 2005 website released in 2010.

For my second 4e D&D game in mid-2012 I "fondly" remember having to use my iPad to remote desktop onto my PC across town to pull up the online character builder to update my character after we levelled mid-session.

a monster builder that was really fast and effective (if Beyond has one, and I presume it does, I can't find it).
You just couldn't find it: https://www.dndbeyond.com/homebrew/creations/create-monster/create
Admittedly, it doesn't do the math. But 5e monsters don't work the same as 4e monsters where the math is easier to do. Really, the only math a 5e monster builder would be able to do is calculating the final CR, but that would still require you to enter the average damage per round, since so much of 5e monster design is based on text boxes that would be super hard for a program to parse.

Regardless, the first 4e Monster Builder was okay. Up until mid-2010 when they launched an update that pretty much broke that program, riddling it with bugs. I remember regretting getting the update and having to continually revise the outputted PDFs to correct the little errors it made.
And the second attempt was just a monster renamer. Did they ever finish that?
But don't forget, the first Monster Builder was one part of planned DM tools that were never finished and never made it out of beta. And the monster builder came out a year after the player tools. Possibly longer.

I'm not sure why you're claiming it "couldn't incorporate homebrew", because it sure as hell could in terms of monsters and so on. It couldn't incorporate homebrew rules, maybe, but I didn't use any in 4E, because honestly, it didn't really need any (and the big flaws it did have couldn't corrected by anything like that, sadly).
I meant homebrew PC subclasses and spells and feats and related content. To say nothing of 3rd Party stuff.
(Why would I give a damn about incorporating homebrew monsters into a player character builder?)

Re: DungeonScape, I am going to fault WotC for taking so long. It's not like they didn't have good choices - they absolutely did. They consistently made bad choices with licensing of D&D though, and Beyond appears to be another one of those.
They partner with the people who came to them. In 2012-13, when they partnered with Trapdoor, D&D was less of a name and not attracting great programmers. They had few choices but the rookie developers.
At the time they had two real choices: take a risk and partner with an untested unknown or not release digital tools. They did the first and it failed, so they opted for the second for a year or two.

People forget how software licencing works. Companies get investors to give them money, which they use to approach WotC and buy the right to make the app, paying for the IP. WotC takes the money and throws it into their pile. The company then builds the app and sells aspects of it to repay their investors and then generate profit.
If no one decent approaches WotC and offers them money, then an app doesn't get made. WotC isn't going to pay someone to make the program, because that's literally the exact opposite of what they want, as it costs them money. You only hire out a software company if it's essential to the product, which a character builder is not.

Re: PF, does it require you to buy them full-real-world-price (i.e. Amazon price - Amazon own Curse and thus Beyond, note)?
Associating the price D&D Beyond charges with Amazon prices seems arbitrary. Twitch/Curse is owned by Amazon but they're still different companies. It's not like Curse gets any money from the sales of D&D books on Amazon.

The price HeroLabs charges is often less. Or rather, buying accessories on Hero Labs is roughly half what D&D Beyond is charging. However, you need to buy the program, which comes with one ruleset, and is roughly the same as what D&D Beyond is charging for the PHB. So the initial cost is the same. And both are still less than the physical books from a game store.
But the big difference is HeroLabs requires you to buy the entire book. You can't just buy the subclasses and elements you want. To make my 5e character, which uses a bunch of scattered options, I can just drop $10 and get the background, subclass, and spells. Which, IIRC, would be LESS than the per month cost of DDI and only charged once.

Plus, D&D Beyond has options like the ability of the DM to buy the content and get a subscription and share it with their players, negating the need for everyone to buy it. Unlike HeroLabs where everyone needs to buy everything.

Does it give you PDFs/offline copies?
Nope. Why would it give PDFs? That's an entirely different service. I also doesn't give me background music or host the game on a VTT or fully manage a campaign.

HeroLabs does work offline. Which is nice. However, the number of times I'm offline is pretty much during a blackout, when I'm unlikely to be gaming anyway. AND unable to use HeroLabs anyway since it's a desktop program and my PC doesn't function well during a blackout. And because it's a desktop program, I CANNOT use it on my tablet. Which also makes it useless as a character manager during play. And I can only install on the one desktop, since I can't upload it to multiple platforms.

Also, I dunno what kind of wizardry we used because I don't run PF, but I paid nothing and got to use a character builder that had all the options I needed build my character last time I played PF (mid-2016). It didn't appear to be an official one either, but hadn't been C&D'd or anything.
Citation needed. I would need to know the name of that app/program.
There are no real "official" Paizo/ Pathfinder apps beyond a crit and fumble app. HeroLabs is the closest, being officially licensed.

Of course, it might have been someone's app using the SRD. You can absolutely get 5e SRD character builders. Those exist. But they're rare because *gasp* running a program and website is work and costs mosey. Most only get C&Ded when they include non-SRD options. (Which, incidentally, happened to the Pathfinder site http://www.d20pfsrd.com/ when they started including ads in an attempt not to operate at a loss.)

I'm literally on the site right now... that's why I was discussing it. It's pretty pathetic.
Where's your character builder app? From the way you're talking, I'm assuming you could do better.

D&D Beyond looks pretty slick to me. And I've payed $0 to D&D Beyond and I can make a level 15 aarakokra druid. Or a freakin' blood hunter. The amount of content available that isn't behind the paywall is surprisingly large.
And since I can create homebrew content for personal use, I imagine I could just ADD most of the content from the PHB that I want, such as feats, spells, and the like. The only thing I can't create is apparently subclasses. But I imagine that's in the works.

It won't even show you what content it's not showing you, as it were.
And if if did, people would select them unknowingly and get upset that they were suddenly being charged. It's much better to hide that stuff and reveal additional content after purchase.

That's just incompetent! It's slick, but I'd rather have functional than slick, and it's behind where even the earliest iterations of the DDI were in functionality.
You're looking back at DDI with some serious rose coloured glasses and forgetting how often it would crash, how long it would take to start up.
You're completely forgetting how limited it was at first, and how the only content included was the crunch and none of the flavour of the books. How it didn't include the adventures, and how it wasn't useful at the gametable unless you had a laptop.
And how if you were a 15yo kid without a credit card you literally could not gain access the program.

Further, it doesn't give you any PDFs - that may well be "On WotC", but it also means charging large one-off charges is just unreasonable, and charging the entire real-world price of a book you can't use offline is just laughable.
DDI didn't give you PDFs either. Neither does HeroLabs for Pathfinder. This is whining about a program not giving you a feature it was never supposed to provide.
It's a character builder/ manager, not an ebook reader!!

You want to complain about the lack of PDFs from WotC. That's cool. I agree. I would like official ones. But that's a topic completely and totally unrelated to D&D Beyond. And if the lack of PDFs from D&D Beyond is an automatic fail, then the exact same thing could be said about DDI.
 

Are you comparing the tools at the end of their life to D&D Beyond, which has barely been out for six months? Shouldn't you be comparing each toolset during that same window?

I can only compare what exists, and no, I'm not comparing them "at the end of their life". It's very clear you didn't use the 4E tools much after second iteration, if at all. So don't make things up.

The DDI site was a 2005 website released in 2010.

No, again that's just rubbish. The second DDI site look good and ran well, and certainly looked 2010 or later. I do agree Silverlight was a huge problem, though. I imagine it looked like a good bet in 2009 when they were developing it, as it was still new - it came out in 2007 (not 2005).

You just couldn't find it: https://www.dndbeyond.com/homebrew/creations/create-monster/create Admittedly, it doesn't do the math. But 5e monsters don't work the same as 4e monsters where the math is easier to do. Really, the only math a 5e monster builder would be able to do is calculating the final CR, but that would still require you to enter the average damage per round, since so much of 5e monster design is based on text boxes that would be super hard for a program to parse.

A digital product that doesn't do the math is incredibly lazy design. I mean that's staggering.

And the second attempt was just a monster renamer. Did they ever finish that?
But don't forget, the first Monster Builder was one part of planned DM tools that were never finished and never made it out of beta. And the monster builder came out a year after the player tools. Possibly longer.

First off, I don't think it did come out a "year later", not the second iteration one, though I don't remember the exact timeline (and I know you definitely don't!). Second off, the second iteration was a "renamer" for like a month, if that. Yes, they absolutely did finish it.

I meant homebrew PC subclasses and spells and feats and related content. To say nothing of 3rd Party stuff. (Why would I give a damn about incorporating homebrew monsters into a player character builder?)

Beyond doesn't do subclasses. It also appears, from their pricing scheme, that if I, as a DM, wanted to share a Feat or magic item with a player, that I'd created, they'd need to be on a paid subscription plan of their own to have it shared.

They partner with the people who came to them.

If so, they're incompetent. But I know whoever is in charge of their digital stuff is incompetent, so that's not surprising. They've made nothing but bad decisions.

You only hire out a software company if it's essential to the product, which a character builder is not.

In 2015? I disagree. And given that they've C&D'd everyone who was effectively helping them... All competent IP-owning companies seek out companies to license their IP as well as letting people come to them. Some exclusively seek people out and are not interested in people coming to them.

That you're claiming otherwise is absolutely bizarre.

3E launched with a character builder on a goddamn CD for god's sake.

Associating the price D&D Beyond charges with Amazon prices seems arbitrary. Twitch/Curse is owned by Amazon but they're still different companies. It's not like Curse gets any money from the sales of D&D books on Amazon.

...

How is this difficult? Amazon gets money when Amazon gets paid. Amazon gets money when Curse gets paid. It's all Amazon.

The price HeroLabs charges is often less. Or rather, buying accessories on Hero Labs is roughly half what D&D Beyond is charging. However, you need to buy the program, which comes with one ruleset, and is roughly the same as what D&D Beyond is charging for the PHB. So the initial cost is the same. And both are still less than the physical books from a game store.

No, Beyond is the same as the books from online purchasing.

But the big difference is HeroLabs requires you to buy the entire book. You can't just buy the subclasses and elements you want. To make my 5e character, which uses a bunch of scattered options, I can just drop $10 and get the background, subclass, and spells. Which, IIRC, would be LESS than the per month cost of DDI and only charged once.

You literally have to be joking. Beyond is a massive, cynical rip-off there. It's so awful I didn't even want to bother arguing about that. $10 will buy you 5 spells. Buying a background, subclass and the spells you'll likely use over your career will be very close in price to buying the entire book, certainly at least 50%. So no, Beyond is a much worse deal here.

Plus, D&D Beyond has options like the ability of the DM to buy the content and get a subscription and share it with their players, negating the need for everyone to buy it. Unlike HeroLabs where everyone needs to buy everything.

I haven't used HeroLabs, but it really seems like you're being disingenous here, and that in fact one group can use one copy of HeroLabs just fine.

Nope. Why would it give PDFs? That's an entirely different service. I also doesn't give me background music or host the game on a VTT or fully manage a campaign.

Because you're paying for the cost of the entire book. You are entering bad-faith arguing territory, now, so that's pretty crummy.

Where's your character builder app? From the way you're talking, I'm assuming you could do better.

My wife actually did build a pretty superb 3E character builder, so that wasn't a great line of argument for you :D (and no, I'm not sharing it). Could we do better? Well with the access to the same resources, I absolutely guarantee it.

The amount of content available that isn't behind the paywall is surprisingly large.

Uhhh, it's the exact same free content as elsewhere, MINUS all the UA content, and minus Mystics and Artificers.

And since I can create homebrew content for personal use, I imagine I could just ADD most of the content from the PHB that I want, such as feats, spells, and the like. The only thing I can't create is apparently subclasses. But I imagine that's in the works.

Yes, that is interesting. They are definitely winking at copying PHB stuff in and so on for now. There weren't initially, but the guidelines for what's allowed mysteriously vanished and people are certainly getting away with it. Whether they will suddenly turn around on this, I dunno, but that is nice.

And if if did, people would select them unknowingly and get upset that they were suddenly being charged. It's much better to hide that stuff and reveal additional content after purchase.

What the heck?

No, they would not. Just grey them out or something. It's not difficult. It's just basic bad design and basic bad business, you shouldn't be defending that. No-one needs to be "suddenly charged". Just have a greyed-out Duergar sitting there with a "purchase X to get this" option.

You're looking back at DDI with some serious rose coloured glasses and forgetting how often it would crash, how long it would take to start up.

I just don't think you really used the 2nd iteration of the DDI very much, because those were first-iteration issues.

You're completely forgetting how limited it was at first, and how the only content included was the crunch and none of the flavour of the books. How it didn't include the adventures, and how it wasn't useful at the gametable unless you had a laptop. And how if you were a 15yo kid without a credit card you literally could not gain access the program.

I'm not the one forgetting. You're the one who barely touched the second iteration.

DDI didn't give you PDFs either. Neither does HeroLabs for Pathfinder. This is whining about a program not giving you a feature it was never supposed to provide.
It's a character builder/ manager, not an ebook reader!!

No, it absolutely IS an ebook reader.

They literally justify charging full-price by saying it's full content. So you literally can't argue that. They made special proprietory e-books of the books for their app and everything. It is one of the core features of Beyond. It is absolutely not "just a character builder/manager". This is nuts.

You want to complain about the lack of PDFs from WotC. That's cool. I agree. I would like official ones. But that's a topic completely and totally unrelated to D&D Beyond. And if the lack of PDFs from D&D Beyond is an automatic fail, then the exact same thing could be said about DDI.

It was definitely a fail from DDI. But it's a bigger fail from Beyond, because they do offer ebooks, it's just you can't read them offline (yet, they claim), and they justify their pricing by the fact that you get "all the content".
 
Last edited:

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
The difference is that 4E had, at least by this long after release, a real, solid, official digital alternative with a very reasonable subscription fee. Whereas 5E has D&D Beyond, which is trash compared to the 4E offering, on a variety of levels

I had the 4e offering until the end, and I have D&D Beyond, and I would say now (finally) they are about equal.

And given the "everything" price, and that you share it out with a lot of people at once, the pricing isn't too far off either.

I think you're going off speculation rather than actual experience with D&D Beyond. That is not something you would have tolerated from other people concerning the 4e offering at the time, and I am not sure why you think others should be impressed from you doing it now with the 5e offering.
 

Prakriti

Hi, I'm a Mindflayer, but don't let that worry you

I can only compare what exists, and no, I'm not comparing them "at the end of their life". It's very clear you didn't use the 4E tools much after second iteration, if at all. So don't make things up.



No, again that's just rubbish. The second DDI site look good and ran well, and certainly looked 2010 or later. I do agree Silverlight was a huge problem, though. I imagine it looked like a good bet in 2009 when they were developing it, as it was still new - it came out in 2007 (not 2005).



A digital product that doesn't do the math is incredibly lazy design. I mean that's staggering.



First off, I don't think it did come out a "year later", not the second iteration one, though I don't remember the exact timeline (and I know you definitely don't!). Second off, the second iteration was a "renamer" for like a month, if that. Yes, they absolutely did finish it.



Beyond doesn't do subclasses. It also appears, from their pricing scheme, that if I, as a DM, wanted to share a Feat or magic item with a player, that I'd created, they'd need to be on a paid subscription plan of their own to have it shared.



If so, they're incompetent. But I know whoever is in charge of their digital stuff is incompetent, so that's not surprising. They've made nothing but bad decisions.



In 2015? I disagree. And given that they've C&D'd everyone who was effectively helping them... All competent IP-owning companies seek out companies to license their IP as well as letting people come to them. Some exclusively seek people out and are not interested in people coming to them.

That you're claiming otherwise is absolutely bizarre.



...

How is this difficult? Amazon gets money when Amazon gets paid. Amazon gets money when Curse gets paid. It's all Amazon.



No, Beyond is the same as the books from online purchasing.



You literally have to be joking. Beyond is a massive, cynical rip-off there. It's so awful I didn't even want to bother arguing about that. $10 will buy you 5 spells. Buying a background, subclass and the spells you'll likely use over your career will be very close in price to buying the entire book, certainly at least 50%. So no, Beyond is a much worse deal here.



I haven't used HeroLabs, but it really seems like you're being disingenous here, and that in fact one group can use one copy of HeroLabs just fine.



Because you're paying for the cost of the entire book. You are entering bad-faith arguing territory, now, so that's pretty crummy.



My wife actually did build a pretty superb 3E character builder, so that wasn't a great line of argument for you :D (and no, I'm not sharing it). Could we do better? Well with the access to the same resources, I absolutely guarantee it.



Uhhh, it's the exact same free content as elsewhere, MINUS all the UA content, and minus Mystics and Artificers.



Yes, that is interesting. They are definitely winking at copying PHB stuff in and so on for now. There weren't initially, but the guidelines for what's allowed mysteriously vanished and people are certainly getting away with it. Whether they will suddenly turn around on this, I dunno, but that is nice.



What the heck?

No, they would not. Just grey them out or something. It's not difficult. It's just basic bad design and basic bad business, you shouldn't be defending that. No-one needs to be "suddenly charged". Just have a greyed-out Duergar sitting there with a "purchase X to get this" option.



I just don't think you really used the 2nd iteration of the DDI very much, because those were first-iteration issues.



I'm not the one forgetting. You're the one who barely touched the second iteration.



No, it absolutely IS an ebook reader.

They literally justify charging full-price by saying it's full content. So you literally can't argue that. They made special proprietory e-books of the books for their app and everything. It is one of the core features of Beyond. It is absolutely not "just a character builder/manager". This is nuts.



It was definitely a fail from DDI. But it's a bigger fail from Beyond, because they do offer ebooks, it's just you can't read them offline (yet, they claim), and they justify their pricing by the fact that you get "all the content".
This isn’t a Chan board. If you are incapable of holding a discussion without being insulting and dismissive by saying “I don’t know what I’m talking about” then you’re not the kind of person I want to waste my time interacting with.

Good day sir.
 

I had the 4e offering until the end, and I have D&D Beyond, and I would say now (finally) they are about equal.

And given the "everything" price, and that you share it out with a lot of people at once, the pricing isn't too far off either.

Re: pricing, can you expand on that?

I mean with 4E, I think I was paying like $10/month for the full deal (my email supports this), except for the "hilarious" time when digital river decided to charge me for four subs at once (they did fix it eventually and were so incompetent they may have left me slightly up on their error, albeit if I had had less in my bank account that would have been very bad).

So that's like $120/year. No-one else in the group paid anything because we just created the characters on my account and updated them after the session.

With Beyond if I was DM'ing (I'm playing, as I always said, I'd be happy to play 5E, not to DM it - but I have a friend who wants to DM it, and so I am interested in the costs), it looks like I'd be paying @$6/month (please let's ignore the 1 cents for simple math!). So that's less, way less - $72/year.

But realistically I'm in the sort of group that uses "all the sourcebooks" - but not the adventure paths. So that looks like PHB + DMG + MM = 90, Xanathar + Volo + SCAG = another 90, Tortles can sit and rotate, and looks like the rest is adventures? Mordenkainen isn't out so not counting.

So that's $180 to just be able do do what we'd normally do (I think we have all the sourcebooks I listed above - I only have a PHB and DMG myself - they are split amongst three people).

I have a migraine so please help if my math is terrible here. 72+180 = 252, so a little more than two years of DDI (and I admit Beyond has some stuff DDI didn't, and hopefully will have more! I am very unimpressed with some elements and more impressed with others). Let's say we ran 5E for three years, so 72x3 + 180 = $396.

That's only a little more than three years of DDI. Similar enough? I agree.

However let's say we get what, 6 more $30 books "required" (not really required, I agree, but by my group, yeah yeah insult us whatever) in that three-year period, does that seem reasonable at WotC's output? I mean I feel it is. That would mean another $180, which makes Beyond 50% more expensive, give or take, in real terms.

Then there's the weird player subscription deal, which seems unnecessary except maybe they have to pay to have access to the items and spells and stuff you homebrew? That's $3/month/player.

I think you're going off speculation rather than actual experience with D&D Beyond. That is not something you would have tolerated from other people concerning the 4e offering at the time, and I am not sure why you think others should be impressed from you doing it now with the 5e offering.

If I am indeed speculating, can you say where? I have a free Beyond, six characters on it, and have been fiddling around with the website on and off all day.

I mean, I agree, if I'm speculating about something and talking nonsense, I should be shot down, but I'm not sure what you're referring to. My big complaints are hard matters of fact - and indeed Stormknight (the official dude) on the Beyond forums hasn't suggested I'm outright wrong on them that I'm discussing here.

This isn’t a Chan board. If you are incapable of holding a discussion without being insulting and dismissive by saying “I don’t know what I’m talking about” then you’re not the kind of person I want to waste my time interacting with.

Good day sir.

Fair enough. However you were arguing in bad faith...

Also presumably you mean "You don't..." also rather than "I don't..." or my migraine is REALLY confusing me.
 
Last edited:

That's only the ones we know of because the creators commented. We have no idea of the ones where the site just closed or the program vanished.

Seems like a smaller list than 4e, which had a few bog names (Ema's Character sheets - which I still miss - and MasterPlan).
Maybe people are finally learning that you can't/shouldn't steal from people/companies and fewer people have tried doing things illegally with 5E than they did with 4E? Maybe people are learning...?

...- not least that in addition to the sub fee you have to re-purchase every book you've already purchased physically, and if I understand it correctly, you don't even get PDFs or offline-viewable content versions of the stuff you're paying full, physical-copy price for (it seems like there's some sort of half-arsed beta implementation that might do that, but it's clearly rather dubious).
Um, a few things here. If you want digital content then why did you buy the physical books in the first place? And then decide to complain about being asked to buy them again? I have a all the core books, plus many expansions and AP's (legally) and I have never bought a physical book. Nor do I plan to.

I've had these since May '15 (they were available about Feb '15) and new releases are available on the early WPN dates which is days/weeks before Amazon has them.

I get to read my digital products offline. I get then at something like 40% off MSRP. Sometimes I get them on sale for even less than that. And if I wanted everything, then I would get another 25% off with a bundle price.

People here almost seem to intentionally keep themselves ignorant of this. Seems to be some sort of prejudice based on misconceptions. If you want 5E in digital format, get a $4/month subscription or a $39 one-time license then buy everything else at the ~40% percent off; https://www.fantasygrounds.com/store/?sys=-1&pub=29&typ=-1&search=&sort=1

...
Re: PF, does it require you to buy them full-real-world-price (i.e. Amazon price - Amazon own Curse and thus Beyond, note)? Does it give you PDFs/offline copies? If doesn't charge you full real price, and/or does give you PDFs, you're being disingenuous, and that sucks.
FG gives you offline access and they are ~40% off full price.
Also, I dunno what kind of wizardry we used because I don't run PF, but I paid nothing and got to use a character builder that had all the options I needed build my character last time I played PF (mid-2016). It didn't appear to be an official one either, but hadn't been C&D'd or anything.
So you were probably using something illegal and you are now complaining that you don't have such for 5E?

Further, it doesn't give you any PDFs - that may well be "On WotC", but it also means charging large one-off charges is just unreasonable, and charging the entire real-world price of a book you can't use offline is just laughable.
Now that I've educated you about this fallacy above, still got a complaint?

A digital product that doesn't do the math is incredibly lazy design. I mean that's staggering.
I think the consideration here is that 5E doesn't have repeatable math to do (i.e. monster creation can not be fully automated.
Beyond doesn't do subclasses. It also appears, from their pricing scheme, that if I, as a DM, wanted to share a Feat or magic item with a player, that I'd created, they'd need to be on a paid subscription plan of their own to have it shared.
FG does sub-classes. And you can get a subscription or a one-time license.

No, they would not. Just grey them out or something. It's not difficult. It's just basic bad design and basic bad business, you shouldn't be defending that. No-one needs to be "suddenly charged". Just have a greyed-out Duergar sitting there with a "purchase X to get this" option.
Agreed on this. I think it would help their return sales as well. "Oh hey, you mean their is another race/class/option I can try? Only $2.99, I'll take a peak at that..."

They literally justify charging full-price by saying it's full content. So you literally can't argue that. They made special proprietory e-books of the books for their app and everything. It is one of the core features of Beyond. It is absolutely not "just a character builder/manager". This is nuts.
I thought the DDB prices were less than MSRP/full-price?

...
With Beyond if I was DM'ing (I'm playing, as I always said, I'd be happy to play 5E, not to DM it - but I have a friend who wants to DM it, and so I am interested in the costs), it looks like I'd be paying @$6/month (please let's ignore the 1 cents for simple math!). So that's less, way less - $72/year.

But realistically I'm in the sort of group that uses "all the sourcebooks" - but not the adventure paths. So that looks like PHB + DMG + MM = 90, Xanathar + Volo + SCAG = another 90, Tortles can sit and rotate, and looks like the rest is adventures? Mordenkainen isn't out so not counting.

So that's $180 to just be able do do what we'd normally do (I think we have all the sourcebooks I listed above - I only have a PHB and DMG myself - they are split amongst three people).

I have a migraine so please help if my math is terrible here. 72+180 = 252, so a little more than two years of DDI (and I admit Beyond has some stuff DDI didn't, and hopefully will have more! I am very unimpressed with some elements and more impressed with others). Let's say we ran 5E for three years, so 72x3 + 180 = $396.
If you did the same with FG (and you would have never had to buy the printed books in the first place!)
A one-time license is $39,
PHB + DMG + MM = $90
Xan + Volo + SCAG = $90
Totaling $219

That gets you all the books in digital format for life. No subscription. With offline access. (and more capabilities than a PDF.)

If your group wants all the benefits of FG (such as sharing the books and a FULLY featured VTT)? Then the one-time ultimate license is $149 (though it's often on sale, like now). So that $219 goes to $329. Still less than your 3 years of DDI or DDB.

IMO, I agree that DDB is not worth the money. But their is, and has been for years, a digital 5E format for everything WotC. Not knowing that means you didn't do your homework, but that's ok. Now that you know, you should know better.

Full Disclosure:
Yes, Roll20 has a 5E license, but their products are at full/MSRP price (meaning just the products you listed above are much more expensive on Roll20 than buying them on FG with an FG license). AND not all the WotC products are available on Roll 20. AND, they are not available off-line or if Roll20 ever shuts down.

Their is also another digital partner for WotC, I think it's another VTT, but I don't think they have released anything yet. Not sure.
 

Maybe people are finally learning that you can't/shouldn't steal from people/companies and fewer people have tried doing things illegally with 5E than they did with 4E? Maybe people are learning...?
If I had to guess, I’d actually say the problem was the GSL and stuff that was acceptable under 3e no longer being acceptable in 4e. There was a learning curve, and people made mistakes. And WotC’s response was C&D rather than warning emails.

Plus, as we now know, 4e wasn't doing very well. I imagine WotC was looking outward for reasons the game was struggling, blaming piracy and fan sites for lost sales.
 


Yaarel

Mind Mage
WotC in the 5e era does a pretty good job at balancing the rights of the corporation with the freedom of D&D as the culture of a community.

WotC gives full access to the 5e SRD, to modify at will and even sell independently. At the same time, the community can even gain full access to corporate trademarks and splatbooks, and sell via the Guild.

This is a wise business plan that makes WotC a good custodian of the D&D game.

Perhaps the only concern I hear players generally mention is access to various official settings via the guild. But it seems WotC has future plans for these other settings.
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
Plus, as we now know, 4e wasn't doing very well. I imagine WotC was looking outward for reasons the game was struggling, blaming piracy and fan sites for lost sales.

4e would have done better. Even before the 4e core books went to print, I predicted the inflexible licensing for 4e would doom it. Independent corporations and players would have been able to add desirable options and more experimentation, to better develop 4e to meet the needs of more players. But it wasnt possible because of the licensing. And now there are very few 4e grognards keeping 4e alive − because of the draconian 4e licensing.

But for 5e, WotC seems to have learned from the 4e licensing mistakes, and even innovated licensing solutions for 5e.

I am satisfied with the licensing situation for 5e.
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
Someone was combining all the Unearthed Arcana playtests into a single .pdf and formatting them similar to the PBH before they received a DMCA. Too bad, because it was a beautiful .pdf, fully illustrated and everything.

https://www.reddit.com/r/UnearthedArcana/comments/5twz0b/codex_unearthed_arcana/ded9jjk/

From what I understand, there is no problem, if he publishes his Unearthed Arcana compendium in the DMs Guild, instead of Reddit. He can even offer it in the Guild for free. He can use his Reddit thread to link to his compendium page in the DMs Guild, so his readership downloads the compendium from the DMs Guild, instead of downloading it from Google.

It seems doable.
 

Level Up!

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top