5E Mike Mearls interview re: Ghosts of Saltmarsh

Parmandur

Legend
Good interview. Interesting to learn that the book was going to resemble TftYP more, but Welch pushed for more generally useful material when she was brought on board. Also, Mearls wrote all of the Greyhawk narrative lore based on his time running Keoland for Living Greyhawk: Welch edited it as a Greyhawk newb to make sure it would be generally useful, while Kim Mohan was brought in to make sure it was solid for Greyhawk afficianados.

Lastly, the vehicle rules are revealed by Mearls as being based on as-yet unreleased mass combat rules they are still working on...
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
Good interview. Interesting to learn that the book was going to resemble TftYP more, but Welch pushed for more generally useful material when she was brought on board. Also, Mearls wrote all of the Greyhawk narrative lore based on his time running Keoland for Living Greyhawk: Welch edited it as a Greyhawk newb to make sure it would be generally useful, while Kim Mohan was brought in to make sure it was solid for Greyhawk afficianados.

Lastly, the vehicle rules are revealed by Mearls as being based on as-yet unreleased mass combat rules they are still working on...
So, I am largely supportive of the WoTC release cycle so far (do not over-saturate the market with content), and method (not putting too much crunch out, and mixing stuff around), but that said.....


At some point, there is a concern that you're going to have too many rules spread out between books, as opposed to within a single source.
 

Parmandur

Legend
So, I am largely supportive of the WoTC release cycle so far (do not over-saturate the market with content), and method (not putting too much crunch out, and mixing stuff around), but that said.....


At some point, there is a concern that you're going to have too many rules spread out between books, as opposed to within a single source.
I think if we ever see a 6E, it will be more of a reorganization, with rules from latter books baked into the core three.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
So, I am largely supportive of the WoTC release cycle so far (do not over-saturate the market with content), and method (not putting too much crunch out, and mixing stuff around), but that said.....


At some point, there is a concern that you're going to have too many rules spread out between books, as opposed to within a single source.
5e Rules Cyclopedia?
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
So, I am largely supportive of the WoTC release cycle so far (do not over-saturate the market with content), and method (not putting too much crunch out, and mixing stuff around), but that said.....

At some point, there is a concern that you're going to have too many rules spread out between books, as opposed to within a single source.
Yeah, but what's the other option? NOT put out any more rules?

At some point, the consumer needs to decide for themself what it is they need to play their game. Do they need vehicle rules? Do they not? If they do, is expecting them to buy a new book that has them included in it really too much to ask?

And what's the other option... do a reprint of game mechanics in 3 years time that binds just all the new game rules from the previous books into one volume? Who's going to buy that? Especially considering that if a person needed one of the rule sets from one of the books for their game, they're not going to just delay their game waiting for the combined volume to be released... they'd buy the book that had rule set when it was available for immediate use.

And let's also be real here... we already do have the "combined volume" of rules for the D&D game available for us. It's D&D Beyond. If having all the game rules together in one place for fast access and ease-of-use is an imperative, no one should be sitting on their hands waiting for a hardcover book to show up in 2022. They instead should use the money they would have spent in 3 years and just get a subscription to D&DB now, thereby getting their desire without relying on WotC to hopefully decide to put out a repetitive crunch book down the line.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
Yeah, but what's the other option? NOT put out any more rules?
Well, no! I hope my intent was clear- I generally am supportive of the release policy. I am just pointing out that the drawback is that you end up with a lot of individual rules scattered across different books, and, to a certain extent, that can be an issue down the road.

To me, it's not so much an issue when it comes to "setting-specific" rules (this is how it works in GH, this is how it works in FR) or in character options (because that's pretty self-contained), but moreso when in the instant example; I don't think, for example, that naval and mass combat rules should be split across multiple books.


At some point, the consumer needs to decide for themself what it is they need to play their game. Do they need vehicle rules? Do they not? If they do, is expecting them to buy a new book that has them included in it really too much to ask?

And what's the other option... do a reprint of game mechanics in 3 years time that binds just all the new game rules from the previous books into one volume? Who's going to buy that? Especially considering that if a person needed one of the rule sets from one of the books for their game, they're not going to just delay their game waiting for the combined volume to be released... they'd buy the book that had rule set when it was available for immediate use.
Well, as pointed out above, people are completists, and whether it's a 50th anniversary "6e" or "5.5e" or Rules Cyclopedia, I wouldn't be surprised (or unhappy) if they combine the various rules into a more streamlined set.

Yeah, I'd buy that, and I'm guessing other people would as well. Not to mention - if you use your books a lot, you probably wouldn't mind getting a new copy once a decade or so, so might as well. :)

And let's also be real here... we already do have the "combined volume" of rules for the D&D game available for us. It's D&D Beyond. If having all the game rules together in one place for fast access and ease-of-use is an imperative, no one should be sitting on their hands waiting for a hardcover book to show up in 2022. They instead should use the money they would have spent in 3 years and just get a subscription to D&DB now, thereby getting their desire without relying on WotC to hopefully decide to put out a repetitive crunch book down the line.
This may shock you, but there remain some of us that steadfastly refuse to use D&D Beyond and/or have an inordinate love of books.

In other words, you'll see me switch from books (for TTRPGs) at roughly the same time as you see me say, "Hey guys, I can't wait to play a Paladin. Yeah, get me a holy avenger ... but make sure it's a rapier!"
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Yeah, but what's the other option? NOT put out any more rules?

At some point, the consumer needs to decide for themself what it is they need to play their game. Do they need vehicle rules? Do they not? If they do, is expecting them to buy a new book that has them included in it really too much to ask?

And what's the other option... do a reprint of game mechanics in 3 years time that binds just all the new game rules from the previous books into one volume? Who's going to buy that? Especially considering that if a person needed one of the rule sets from one of the books for their game, they're not going to just delay their game waiting for the combined volume to be released... they'd buy the book that had rule set when it was available for immediate use.

And let's also be real here... we already do have the "combined volume" of rules for the D&D game available for us. It's D&D Beyond. If having all the game rules together in one place for fast access and ease-of-use is an imperative, no one should be sitting on their hands waiting for a hardcover book to show up in 2022. They instead should use the money they would have spent in 3 years and just get a subscription to D&DB now, thereby getting their desire without relying on WotC to hopefully decide to put out a repetitive crunch book down the line.
I don't disagree with what your saying. However, i also think there is, or will be, room for a "Rules Cyclodia" 5e update. I am not likely to get DnDBeyond, but a hardcover Rules Cyclopedia does interest me (down the road though). Are there enough people like me to make the book worth it - I have no idea.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Well, no! I hope my intent was clear- I generally am supportive of the release policy. I am just pointing out that the drawback is that you end up with a lot of individual rules scattered across different books, and, to a certain extent, that can be an issue down the road.

To me, it's not so much an issue when it comes to "setting-specific" rules (this is how it works in GH, this is how it works in FR) or in character options (because that's pretty self-contained), but moreso when in the instant example; I don't think, for example, that naval and mass combat rules should be split across multiple books.




Well, as pointed out above, people are completists, and whether it's a 50th anniversary "6e" or "5.5e" or Rules Cyclopedia, I wouldn't be surprised (or unhappy) if they combine the various rules into a more streamlined set.

Yeah, I'd buy that, and I'm guessing other people would as well. Not to mention - if you use your books a lot, you probably wouldn't mind getting a new copy once a decade or so, so might as well. :)



This may shock you, but there remain some of us that steadfastly refuse to use D&D Beyond and/or have an inordinate love of books.

In other words, you'll see me switch from books (for TTRPGs) at roughly the same time as you see me say, "Hey guys, I can't wait to play a Paladin. Yeah, get me a holy avenger ... but make sure it's a rapier!"
They seem to have hit on a good idea with themed books. Want to do seafaring adventure? Buy Ghosts of Saltmarsh. Don't buy if that isn't appealing. They seem to be reprinting many of the vehicle rules in Baldur's Gate, and probably in the Eberron hardcover. WotC has shown themselves to be very comfortable with reprinting rules if needed.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
They seem to have hit on a good idea with themed books. Want to do seafaring adventure? Buy Ghosts of Saltmarsh. Don't buy if that isn't appealing. They seem to be reprinting many of the vehicle rules in Baldur's Gate, and probably in the Eberron hardcover. WotC has shown themselves to be very comfortable with reprinting rules if needed.
Yep.

I'm really curious to see what they do for the 50th.

They have to do something, right? Too good of an opportunity to not do something amazing, right?
 

cbwjm

I can add a custom title.
Good interview. Interesting to learn that the book was going to resemble TftYP more, but Welch pushed for more generally useful material when she was brought on board. Also, Mearls wrote all of the Greyhawk narrative lore based on his time running Keoland for Living Greyhawk: Welch edited it as a Greyhawk newb to make sure it would be generally useful, while Kim Mohan was brought in to make sure it was solid for Greyhawk afficianados.

Lastly, the vehicle rules are revealed by Mearls as being based on as-yet unreleased mass combat rules they are still working on...
Oh cool, it means that we should hopefully see these rules in a book that will be more generally useful. I'm interested in the rules but not so much in the adventure book.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Oh cool, it means that we should hopefully see these rules in a book that will be more generally useful. I'm interested in the rules but not so much in the adventure book.
Well, they are already re-using them in Baldur's Gate. Dollars to donuts, they will be in Eberron, too.
 

Motorskills

Explorer
Excellent interview, I listened to it on a drive with my wife.

Unfortunately, as much as I enjoyed, the occasional ear-piercing audio screeches means she has now taken out a fatwa on you....
 

_NewbieDM_

Villager
I didn't realize there were audio screeches. I recorded that off an ipad in an empty cavernous room, the echo is horrible, I know. Screeches? Sorry about that. I didn't go back and hear the interview again. Happen often?
I hope the content was worth it though. :)
 

Advertisement

Top