D&D 5E Monte Cook Leaves WotC - No Longer working on D&D Next [updated]

billd91

Not your screen monkey (he/him)
Unless you are afraid your players will want to play cooler stuff instead of hobbits :p

Inconceivable. There's nothing cooler than hobbits. Playing a character who belongs to a race of people who spend time before setting out adventure saying good-bye to the beer barrel? Awesome.
 

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Falstaff

First Post
Because you just can't say "not in my world"?

There were no halflings in my first homebrew, it's easy to ignore fluff.

Unless you are afraid your players will want to play cooler stuff instead of hobbits :p

(Just a small rant :) )

I won't play it because that just isn't D&D to me. I'm not saying it is wrong or whatever, it just isn't the D&D I grew up playing. The D&D I'll buy has to be built around clearly defined archetypes of classic fantasy literature - and by that I mean Tolkien. The game has so have a simple core that I can easily adjudicate on the fly. PCs have to be weak at low levels and if they gain higher levels can become more powerful - albeit never superhuman. I want high level play to be about building castles and clearing wilderlands and exploring uncharted areas. I want high-level wizards to be feared and able to crack mountains - but I want them to start out very powerless and have to earn that power. I want it to be difficult. I want the players to have to make difficult choices and I want them to start out no different than the common man, same as the cobbler down the street, only they've got the gumption to belt on a sword and go exploring an old ruin full of monsters.

Anyway I'm rambling. Please understand that I'm fully aware that this type of game isn't interesting to most younger gamers and that I fully don't expect WotC to cater to my old man wants.
 

avin

First Post
Anyway I'm rambling. Please understand that I'm fully aware that this type of game isn't interesting to most younger gamers and that I fully don't expect WotC to cater to my old man wants.

Well, I'm not that young myself... neither a big fan of Dragonborn, but I like being able to tell different stories using different worlds and races.

Tolkien was never a big influence to me as I first read a version of The Song of the Nibelungs my father had at home and other versions of norse and greek mythologies mixed with all sort of comic books.

As people introduced me The Hobbit I was used to Raymond Chandler... and just couldn't stand the first pages with all that dwarves singing (life is fun, I love that now, in The Hobbit trailer)...

By that time I already GMed for years using GURPS, played AD&D2E and started DMing 3E with no clue about LOTR.

Years passed and I just read LOTR after watching the first movie, which I like very much, but still, is too Good vs Evil to a Phillipe Marlowe fan...

Oh, heck, I wrote too much :) Just wanted to expolain why I like having options around, even if I don't use it that way (like 4E version of Tieflings)... :)
 

Liquidsabre

Explorer
Yea, losing your lead designer in the middle of development? WotC dropped the ball on that one, as they did with the unexpected backlash to 4e (I play 4e and PF btw). I think I just lost interest in following DDN. I'll take a glance at the finished product, but I'm tired of wasting my time.
 

Kobold Boots

Banned
Banned
I won't play it because that just isn't D&D to me. I'm not saying it is wrong or whatever, it just isn't the D&D I grew up playing. The D&D I'll buy has to be built around clearly defined archetypes of classic fantasy literature - and by that I mean Tolkien. The game has so have a simple core that I can easily adjudicate on the fly. PCs have to be weak at low levels and if they gain higher levels can become more powerful - albeit never superhuman. I want high level play to be about building castles and clearing wilderlands and exploring uncharted areas. I want high-level wizards to be feared and able to crack mountains - but I want them to start out very powerless and have to earn that power. I want it to be difficult. I want the players to have to make difficult choices and I want them to start out no different than the common man, same as the cobbler down the street, only they've got the gumption to belt on a sword and go exploring an old ruin full of monsters.

Anyway I'm rambling. Please understand that I'm fully aware that this type of game isn't interesting to most younger gamers and that I fully don't expect WotC to cater to my old man wants.

No offense to you sir, but the game you just described is my fourth edition campaign. Flavor is not rules, it's the group you're with and story you're telling.

If there was anything "old man" that I'd read into what you're writing (and assuming at that) is that there's a certain amount of system mastery and comfort that you're not willing to give up by moving to another edition.

(before that's taken as a slight, know that I left older editions and took up the mantle of 4e because I needed a systems mastery advantage over my own players if I was to play D&D again. I've since corrected my lapse of 3.x knowledge but I found that nothing sucked the life out of the game for me quite like players that knew everything and treated the game like a math problem... that pushed me to 4e.)
 

Falstaff

First Post
No offense to you sir, but the game you just described is my fourth edition campaign. Flavor is not rules, it's the group you're with and story you're telling.

If there was anything "old man" that I'd read into what you're writing (and assuming at that) is that there's a certain amount of system mastery and comfort that you're not willing to give up by moving to another edition.

(before that's taken as a slight, know that I left older editions and took up the mantle of 4e because I needed a systems mastery advantage over my own players if I was to play D&D again. I've since corrected my lapse of 3.x knowledge but I found that nothing sucked the life out of the game for me quite like players that knew everything and treated the game like a math problem... that pushed me to 4e.)

Good for you. Glad you're enjoying 4th edition.
 

MerricB

Eternal Optimist
Supporter
I cannot help but think that the development of D&DNext will suffer due to Monte's departure (his 2E & 3E work was good stuff). I also believe that Hasbro should have done whatever it took to keep him onboard, I would have.

Saying "whatever it takes" is nice, but it's also unrealistic. (Does "whatever it takes" involve killing the rest of the design team?) The truth is if Monte had a big problem with someone or something at Wizards, then it was better that he left rather than staying around and possibly getting to the point where he actively tried to sabotage the project because he had become extremely unhappy.

This new edition needs people who are good designers and developers, certainly, but it also needs people who can work within the strictures of the environment. This is no different to any product at any other company.

Consider Pathfinder. That is, if anything, a compromise product. It starts with this design goal: "We need to make this as compatible as possible with 3.5e". Great if you think 3.5e is good; a lot more of a problem if you think it has fundamental flaws with the system. Would someone who thought 4E a much better system than 3.5e been a good designer on the Pathfinder project?
 

Aehrlon

First Post
Saying "whatever it takes" is nice, but it's also unrealistic. (Does "whatever it takes" involve killing the rest of the design team?) The truth is if Monte had a big problem with someone or something at Wizards, ........... then it was better that he left rather than staying around and possibly getting to the point where he actively tried to sabotage the project because he had become extremely unhappy.
So you say. What you call unrealistic (in your opinion) I call a good idea. Perhaps saying 'whatever it takes' was an over-statement but if it was a question of a little more money or some design element, corporate could have made a stronger effort to keep him. Let us remember that Monte was the Leader of the Design Team. They gave him that position for good reasons. Also, you are speculating about him having a problem with someone or something @ WotC; we don't know that for certain. He gave kudos to the 2 other guys on his team. Not mentioning others does not necessarily mean he had a problem with them. Reading between the lines, it's understandable that folks would think that, it doesn't make it true.

The next part of your post is solid reasoning, however I'm looking at it from the other side. Yes, as you say, if he stayed it is possible that he would have been unhappy & that Monte might have not had his heart in it. I don't think many professionals of Monte's pedigree would actively try to sabotage a project let alone a game he has said he loves. I submit this: It is also possible that if Hasbro/WotC had made an effort to keep him, that the finished product of D&D Next would have been even better?? I fear it will suffer due to his absence. That's the point I was attempting to make. I will endeavor to stay optimistic toward 5E but it will be difficult. Isn't it sad how corporate-types don't really seem to value their employees who are the ones doing the work, coming up with the ideas & making them money?? I think it is... of course, now I'm speculating on their corporate... fairly easy thing to do I guess.
 
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broghammerj

Explorer
Wow, step away for a few weeks and the sky begins to fall. I am sad to see Monte go. Whether this has an effect on DnD Next, no one will really know since we can't look behind the curtain. It is a bit disconcerting for us 3E fans. The closest analogy I could come up with is a political one. It seems DnD fans are so polarized much like the democrats and republicans of today's current political scene. It would be as if one of the presidential candidates dropped out of the race due to illness and all of a sudden that group was left championless. There is no one to carry the issues you care about to the negotiating table in order to hammer out a deal that is palatable to all parties.

Hopefully my politics analogy reads as non-political as I intended it to be (per forum rules):angel:
 


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