D&D General Less is More: Why You Can't Get What You Want in D&D

There is an article/post around here where Ryan Dancey describes how things were when he first took stock of the state of TSR, notably their warehouse full of virtually worthless stock dating back up to a decade. TSR, at their "height" published over a dozen of products each month, spread over maybe half a dozen settings at any one time. While product glut wasn't the sole reason TSR failed, it was definitely one of the major contributing factors.
That is a very interesting article. Thanks for pointing me to it! Sounds like the demise was a combination of a lot of issues.
 

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MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I'm just here to speculate on what the age is that above it, more than half know who this is and below it, less than half.

My guess would be 37. Or 41. Something like that.
Over 50. But anyone can acquaint themselves with him through the magic of books.

“A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called “leaves”) imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years.

Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time ― proof that humans can work magic.”

Sagan, Carl. Cosmos Penguin Random House LLC. (1980)
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Supporter
Over 50. But anyone can acquaint themselves with him through the magic of books.

“A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called “leaves”) imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years.

Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time ― proof that humans can work magic.”

Sagan, Carl. Cosmos Penguin Random House LLC. (1980)

Wait ... Carl Sagan wrote books?

He was a scientist?????

I always thought he was just a famous stoner, like Seth Rogen and J. Edgar Hoover! You learn something new every day....

1716039468211.png
 


Clint_L

Legend
TLDR.

Do we need to run a GoFundMe to pay for you to have a professional editor?

:)
These sorts of posts really irritate me.

Snarff is arguably the best writer on this site, and their threads are meticulously considered and argued while being written in a style that is entertaining and direct. I always look forward to reading them, whether I agree with the opinion or not. And they do their research.

Yes, they are long. At least the OP usually is. That’s because they approach their subject thoughtfully and rigorously. But there are a LOT of posters on this forum who use a hell of a lot more words to say a lot less as we spend a hundred pages going back and forth, beating the dead horse. Too often, I am one of them.

There is more style and insight in a single Snarff OP than in most entire threads on this forum. They are a gift to this forum, but if a single long post is too much, then don’t read it. For me, they are a highlight. Snarff should have their own column. I’d pay to read their writing.
 

Mercurius

Legend
Over 50. But anyone can acquaint themselves with him through the magic of books.

“A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called “leaves”) imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years.

Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time ― proof that humans can work magic.”

Sagan, Carl. Cosmos Penguin Random House LLC. (1980)
I dunno, I think a lot of folks in their 40s remember him, having watched Cosmos re-runs as kids.

Nice quote, btw.
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
These sorts of posts really irritate me.
I'm sorry I irritated you.
Snarff is arguably the best writer on this site
OK, I'd take issue with that. I like some of what Snarf posts here, and not others. This is an example of one I didn't like due to lack of editing, though I agree with his premise. Snarf didn't get to his thesis statement for literally 7 paragraphs and a video not related to his topic. He wrote far more than you did in your responses to me about...nothing. Paragraph on paragraph that had nothing to do with the topic, as if he were rambling to himself before beginning writing. At some point it should be fair to critique it particularly when the theme is "you can do too much sometimes," right?

Here is what I am talking about. You really think it's unfair of me to say hey, maybe edit your stuff? You show me the "thoughtful and rigorous" you mention in the beginning of this:


I have been on an extended hiatus from Enworld, and as most of you are probably saying right now, NOT LONG ENOUGH!

But I am dropping in to provide a post that seems germane given the tenor of a few conversations that I see regarding D&D design decisions in general, and also some of the discussed changes that are coming (or not coming) to the updated/revised/not-really-changed whatever D&D is being released soon that we still don't have a great name for.

D&D24? (All of this is assuming we are getting it this year ... right?)
5e24?
5.5e?
5e Electric Boogaloo?
5e II: The Quickening?
5e directed by Gus Van Sant?

Eh, it's all good! Anyway, back to the main subject of the post (to the extent I ever have a main subject) which is design decisions. I've discussed this before, but I'd like to do a deeper dive into it. I think of this issue in a number of ways, but the best, high-level way to think about is the old Monty Python skit from Meaning of Life. It's Mr. (Monsieur) Creosote. If you haven't seen it before, I'd recommend viewing it; it's quick google away. If you're at work, be aware that is ... well, not for the faint of heart.

Here's the premise along with a link to the video. I'm going to put in spoilers, but putting a Monty Python skit in spoilers on Enworld seems like worrying about telling people that Luke blows up the Death Star. Oh, you didn't know that? WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH YOUR LIFE?

You were productive and didn't just watch movies and engage in endless debates about how everything since Star Trek: TOS has just been a waste of time? Okay then. Fair enough. Ahem. Anyway....

The basic premise is very simple; person is eating. At a certain point, they are overfull. They are offered one more thing to eat. The famous "wafer-thin mint." They know they shouldn't have it. And yet, with much coaxing, they do. They eat the wafer-thin mint. And then they explode.


Now, let's get into the real thesis of this piece.
 
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Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
Except half elves or healing sorcerers warlocks.
And they changed the details on many species and classes, changed feats, and changed a lot of spells to boot. "2014 but more" is not accurate. "2014 but slightly different in many particulars and with a radical face-lift" is more correct I think.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
I'm sorry I irritated you.

OK, I'd take issue with that. I like some of what Snarf posts here, and not others. This is an example of one I didn't like due to lack of editing, though I agree with his premise. Snarf didn't get to his thesis statement for literally 7 paragraphs and a video not related to his topic. He wrote far more than you did in your responses to me about...nothing. Paragraph on paragraph that had nothing to do with the topic, as if he were rambling to himself before beginning writing. At some point it should be fair to critique it particularly when the theme is "you can do too much sometimes," right?

Here is what I am talking about. You really think it's unfair of me to say hey, maybe edit your stuff? You show me the "thoughtful and rigorous" you mention in the beginning of this:
I enjoyed the read, as I enjoy many reads other people complain don't get to "the point" fast enough. Its not all technical writing, no one's getting a grade here, and no one's asking you for money.
 

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