D&D 5E Is 5E "big enough" for a Basic/Advanced split?

There are very few people on this forum that played AD&D, much less basic. I played basic probably once and my impression was that it was a simplified version of the game. Then again, that was long, long, ago.

Huh, I always got the impression that this forum was heavily slanted toward the "old timers" who started playing pre-3rd Ed D&D and that the players here who started with 5E were in the minority.
 

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Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Whether 5e is big enough for it, I don't know. Whether WotC will do it, I strongly doubt.
This, 1000%. There is no business upside for WotC to split the player base between a "Basic" brand and an "Advanced" brand. Operationally they would each probably have their own budgets, and their own dedicated marketing folks and dedicated designers. Will it generate 2X+ sales? No way.

D&D is a golden goose. You don't spatchcock it and serve it up to different consumers.
 

billd91

Hobbit on Quest (he/him)
I don't know about that. I was in my teens when I started playing in the 80's and I, and all the other teens I knew who played, chose AD&D over Basic, because, well, we felt like we were advanced ourselves and did not need to play a simplified version of the game.
That fit us as well. We did start with the Holmes Basic and the Redbox, but since neither went very high levels, we assumed the next logical step was to go to Advanced D&D.

As far as confusing people in any kind of market test now, you have to have a well-known basic edition for the "advanced" version to make any sense. TSR had that and people like us still got confused and conflated the two. So, yeah, I can see test marketing the idea not going well.
 

Oofta

Legend
Huh, I always got the impression that this forum was heavily slanted toward the "old timers" who started playing pre-3rd Ed D&D and that the players here who started with 5E were in the minority.
There do seem to be more old timer players than in the general populace, and while I'm not sure what the percentages are I doubt we're in the majority. Or even if we are, many of us haven't played the older editions since they were current. I know there are a handful who still play the older editions, but personally I haven't played AD&D or basic this century.
 

S'mon

Legend
I have never seen anyone running the game on the Basic rules alone. Is that a thing people actually do?
It would be cool to see Mystara released with support for Basic Rules play. I'd especially like to see NPCs given classes using the Basic Rules rather than always refer to an NPC stat block. Currently I don't think D&D Beyond supports the Basic Rules as they differ from the OGL.
 

S'mon

Legend
Here's a related question:

I don't play with strangers often, other than when I run convention games (which are usually not D&D, because a con is the one time you can collect 6 people to sit down for something else).

What are the general expectations as far as option availability and/or optional rules inclusion for the average group of random players who found one another on a Discord server or whatever? Do most people come to the table expecting to be allowed to use anything in an official source? Do most DMs of random groups allow everything?
IME they expect to use everything on D&D Beyond, but don't rage quit over limited sources.
They do rage quit over 'roll group initiative' funnily enough. They tend to REALLY REALLY want to have their own distinct turn where no one else is acting. This is by far the biggest deal breaker I have seen.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I have never seen anyone running the game on the Basic rules alone. Is that a thing people actually do?
I mean, we did it before the PHB came out in 2014. I'm sure plenty of middle schoolers use those tunes, because they can't find the books and want to try the game.
 

S'mon

Legend
I mean, we did it before the PHB came out in 2014. I'm sure plenty of middle schoolers use those tunes, because they can't find the books and want to try the game.
When I introduced a middle schooler to 5e, he had not heard of the Basic rules. I gave him the remains of my first print PHB & MM that had fallen apart due to faulty binding and kindly been replaced by WoTC in 2015.
 

IME they expect to use everything on D&D Beyond, but don't rage quit over limited sources.
They do rage quit over 'roll group initiative' funnily enough. They tend to REALLY REALLY want to have their own distinct turn where no one else is acting. This is by far the biggest deal breaker I have seen.

I have never played in a D&D game from any edition where we used group initiative for the players or the monsters.
 

Mezuka

Adventurer
I have never played in a D&D game from any edition where we used group initiative for the players or the monsters.
We played group initiative all through B/X and AD&D. It's really a different mind set. We changed it to individual initiative with 2e.

Mind you the Moldvay Basic does mention using individual initiative but I think we weren't aware of that paragraph. I only discovered it after reading the book for the first time in decades two years ago. I was quite a shock! 🙃
 

Mezuka

Adventurer
About the OP.

No. There is not need for a basic set of rules. The Starter and Essentials adresses that already. WoTC is very worried about splitting the fan base. That is why they haven't done modern or sci-fi rpgs. The Hasbro property (G.I. Joe, etc) are handled by Renegade Games for this reason.
 


DND_Reborn

Legend
I have never played in a D&D game from any edition where we used group initiative for the players or the monsters.
That surprises me, not for players, but for monsters! IME nearly every DM has all the monsters act at the same time. Rarely they might separate the monsters into two or three groups for different types or functions, but even that is pretty rare.
 


Mezuka

Adventurer
That surprises me, not for players, but for monsters! IME nearly every DM has all the monsters act at the same time. Rarely they might separate the monsters into two or three groups for different types or functions, but even that is pretty rare.
Agreed. Thus 5e initiative could be simplified. Any player you rolls above 10 activate before the monsters. Those who rolled below 10 activate after the monsters.
 

DND_Reborn

Legend
Agreed. Thus 5e initiative could be simplified. Any player you rolls above 10 activate before the monsters. Those who rolled below 10 activate after the monsters.
We were using 10 for the monsters' Initiative, modified by highest of DEX, INT, or WIS, for a long time before we moved to cinematic initiative.
 

Agreed. Thus 5e initiative could be simplified. Any player you rolls above 10 activate before the monsters. Those who rolled below 10 activate after the monsters.

Not just the initiative, the whole combat turn needs to be simplified or reworked. It is only 6 seconds long and way too much can happen in that time. I hate the whole "everything is happening at the same time" BS, so I have seriously considered going back to 10-second turns, since that also matches a D20 roll better for sequencing the order of when things happen. The whole Bonus Action economy really bugs me too.
 

Reynard

Legend
Not just the initiative, the whole combat turn needs to be simplified or reworked. It is only 6 seconds long and way too much can happen in that time. I hate the whole "everything is happening at the same time" BS, so I have seriously considered going back to 10-second turns, since that also matches a D20 roll better for sequencing the order of when things happen. The whole Bonus Action economy really bugs me too.
Out of curiosity, what significant change occurs when you go from 6 to 10 second rounds?
 

SkidAce

Legend
There do seem to be more old timer players than in the general populace, and while I'm not sure what the percentages are I doubt we're in the majority. Or even if we are, many of us haven't played the older editions since they were current. I know there are a handful who still play the older editions, but personally I haven't played AD&D or basic this century.
Agreed, I played each edition as it cycled through. Never went backwards though.

As a side note, 5E strike a good balance between complexity and simplicity for me, I will likely not upgrade again.
 

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