D&D 5E New player, questions about new edition

skintchicken

Villager
I know that no one knows for sure and this will all just be speculation, but do y'all think the 6e (or 5.5e, etc.) will be mostly made of slight tweaks to 5e instead of more of an entirely new edition? I've been lurking all day and it seems most think it'll just be incremental.

I ask because I began playing a couple of months ago and I love it. I tend to jump in head first when I find a new thing I really like so, of course, I'm looking to buy some books, but I don't want to invest much money into 5e books if they are just going to become outdated. I know that WotC says 6e will be backwards compatible, but I'm still kind of worried about it.

I have already bought the alternative art Rules Expansion set. The artwork is super cool looking. What are the best campaign books for a newcomer, in y'all's opinion?

Thank you very much for any and all help, suggestions, etc.
 

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GuyBoy

Hero
Firstly, welcome to the boards. This place is great.
Moving to your question, I’m more echoing it than answering it to be honest; I am DM-ing the Starter Set for my two grandkids and looking to buy them the full rules soon, but I’m also wondering whether to wait a bit.
So we are in this together, new player and 43 years-of-D&D veteran. Let’s see what advice we get....
 

TerraDave

5ever, or until 2024
We really don't know. It may be incremental, but the increments may be quite large. At least as far as increments go.

But its also a ways off, and once you have something started, there is no rule to switch right away, or ever, if you don't want to. So this probably wont even be an issue for at least a couple of years.

And 50AE is supposed to be compatible.

But it seems like you have all the rules (maybe too many). An adventure is even less likely to be affected by the change. I like Saltmarsh and Ravenloft.
 

GuyBoy

Hero
Agreed regards the adventures. I’ve played in Ravenloft and DM-ed Saltmarsh. Both are great.
I’d also recommend Tales from the Yawning Portal; several older “classics” updated for 5e. It can serve multiple roles as a resource. As a long-term player, I’m especially fond of the Giants series included in the book.
 

I know that no one knows for sure and this will all just be speculation, but do y'all think the 6e (or 5.5e, etc.) will be mostly made of slight tweaks to 5e instead of more of an entirely new edition? I've been lurking all day and it seems most think it'll just be incremental.

I ask because I began playing a couple of months ago and I love it. I tend to jump in head first when I find a new thing I really like so, of course, I'm looking to buy some books, but I don't want to invest much money into 5e books if they are just going to become outdated. I know that WotC says 6e will be backwards compatible, but I'm still kind of worried about it.

I have already bought the alternative art Rules Expansion set. The artwork is super cool looking. What are the best campaign books for a newcomer, in y'all's opinion?

Thank you very much for any and all help, suggestions, etc.
It's likely that it will be more than absolutely pure incremental changes, due to some recent developments on top of long-running trends. But it's also very unlikely to be a complete edition overhaul like the differences between 2e and 3e, 3e and 4e, or 4e and 5e.

Basically, I have a sliding scale of comparisons, using past examples (which probably won't mean anything to you since you're new to the hobby.) The stuff they've talked about is significantly bigger than the "not really an edition change at all" examples from the past. But it's also substantially smaller than the "really genuinely a whole new game" edition changes. Examples of relevant predicted/presumed/evidenced-but-not-explicitly-confirmed changes are:

1. They appear to be moving heavily away from basing anything off of short rests. Instead, things are being shifted to a "proficiency bonus per long rest" system. Some mechanics will probably still require short rests (e.g. Arcane Recovery, Song of Rest, etc.), but they'll either be minor, or only once a day when taking a short rest, or in some other way reduced.
2. It's looking very strongly like Backgrounds are getting overhauled, and that future backgrounds will include the choice of a feat at 1st level (and possibly another feat later on). This is one of the biggest changes and makes a rather meaningful impact.
3. Dragonborn got rewritten, and it's pretty clear they'll want the new ones to replace the old dragonborn race, mostly because the old one sucks and the new ones are at least decent. This also will include things like switching to "Ancestries," dropping the concept of subraces, and making ability scores flexible (though I'd be surprised if there weren't suggested Ancestry ability scores.)
4. I expect some 3.5e-like tweaks and adjustments to spells and individual (sub)classes. E.g. many think that the Beastmaster Ranger is going to get rewritten because it's consistently polled so poorly. I also think they'll be tweaking Sorcerer, Monk, and possibly Warlock (depending on how they feel about Hexblade.)

In sum, these don't look anywhere near as big as usual full-edition changes, but they look quite comparable to 3e->3.5e, where a bunch of stuff got edited and revised, just not totally replaced.
 

overgeeked

B/X Known World
We don’t know for sure. But WotC has pushed the narrative that it will be minor tweaks and changes. To be fair, they’ve said that before and flat out lied about it. A lot of people are in “wait and see” mode.

Eventually, whatever they produce will be outdated. It’s the business model. New edition, push out products until sales taper off, new edition, push out products…etc.

You will always be able to use your books. As time goes on you will (likely) find fewer and fewer people interested in older editions.

Disney-land horror, Ravenloft.

Weird science-fantasy war, Eberron.

Space-fantasy a la Treasure Planet, Spelljammer.

Greek-themed, Theros.
 
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Li Shenron

Legend
I know that no one knows for sure and this will all just be speculation, but do y'all think the 6e (or 5.5e, etc.) will be mostly made of slight tweaks to 5e instead of more of an entirely new edition? I've been lurking all day and it seems most think it'll just be incremental.

I ask because I began playing a couple of months ago and I love it. I tend to jump in head first when I find a new thing I really like so, of course, I'm looking to buy some books, but I don't want to invest much money into 5e books if they are just going to become outdated. I know that WotC says 6e will be backwards compatible, but I'm still kind of worried about it.

I have already bought the alternative art Rules Expansion set. The artwork is super cool looking. What are the best campaign books for a newcomer, in y'all's opinion?

Thank you very much for any and all help, suggestions, etc.
This is always a risk if your approach to a RPG game is "wanting to play only the latest official version". But if you don't take that risk you never play the game...

You already bought a large 3-books bundle and I presume you also have at least the PHB, so you're already into 5e. If you really like some other 5e books, I wouldn't worry about them becoming "obsolete", it's WotC that should worry about losing fans by making them feel they waste their money.

But know that books are not only rules, and people use older books in newer editions (personally I haven't bought a single 5e adventure yet as I am still using adventures as old as BECMI era).

Also know that as a last resort you can always re-sell books you have stopped using.

My personal suggestion is "buy what you use, and use what you buy".
 

skintchicken

Villager
Thank you for the replies and the welcome! This place seems very welcoming and informative.

I know that I don't have to use any of the new changes if I don't like them, but I tend to overthink everything so.......

Does anyone here happen to live in central Kentucky? I could always use more DnD friends.
 

skintchicken

Villager
Do you mind explaining more about your point number 2, please?

Edit: Apparently, I don't know how to quote on this board yet. My question is for Raiden.
 

We don’t know for sure. But WotC has pushed the narrative that it will be minor tweaks and changes. To be fair, they’ve said that before and flat out lied about it. A lot of people are in “wait and see” mode.
Do you have an example?
I don't recall flat out lies, but I might have missed or forgotten.

To the actual topic.
I would not wait 2 years to start, just because there might be rules overhaul.

I would start with the essentials kit, which has a nice starter rulebook and a 50% coupon for the phb at dndbwyond, as well as free upgrades for the adventure for some more levels.

The adventure itself is a collection of mini adventures that are connected loosely, some of which are quite decent.
So for a very small price you get a lot of stuff.
 

delericho

Legend
I know that no one knows for sure and this will all just be speculation, but do y'all think the 6e (or 5.5e, etc.) will be mostly made of slight tweaks to 5e instead of more of an entirely new edition? I've been lurking all day and it seems most think it'll just be incremental.

It's supposed to be backwards-compatible, but that was also supposed to be true of 3.5e as well and the reality was... mixed.

I have already bought the alternative art Rules Expansion set. The artwork is super cool looking. What are the best campaign books for a newcomer, in y'all's opinion?
In my opinion the best adventure WotC have done (in general, but especially for newcomers) is "Lost Mine of Phandelver", which is in the Starter Set. (I wouldn't bother with that set except for the adventure, but it is worth the money for that alone. The Essentials Set is better in every regard except the adventure - I'd actually recommend getting both.)

Of the big campaign books, "Curse of Strahd" is far and away the best, and especially so if you're not familiar with the original. Otherwise they're a very mixed bag.
 

D&D has this irritating thing where whole different games are sold as "new editions". I don't see that happening. If it was some sort of massive-change, actually-a-whole-new-game 6e coming out in 2024, WotC would be roadtesting radically new mechanics by now in unearthed arcana articles, and a public playtest of the whole-new-game would be happening soon if not already. So compared to a full numbered edition switch it is almost certainly not that (even in the scenario where the powers that be are boneheads who don't understand the popularity of the existing system they would be squandering, or the danger of losing marketshare to a clone of the system people actually like if they try something radically new).

But the "incremental change" we do get could range anywhere from a "you can adapt your old adventures to this barely compatible system with difficulty" to a slight refresh where casual players don't even notice the difference.

It's entirely possible that we've already seen or all but seen the extent of the major changes in the more recent publications, with ability score bonuses no longer tied to race (and a lot more dancing around race terminology), some changes to monster statblocks, and the near retirement of short rest abilities in favor of proficiency bonus times a day abilities. 5e has already been substantially rewritten and is now a bit of an untidy, untenable system, with optional class features and race rules in Tasha's and alternative versions of races in Monsters of the Multiverse. I'm basically happy with the edition as is, really don't want a "new edition" at all, and I would still welcome a new version of the players handbook that incorporated this stuff so I didn't have to cross-reference rules with alternative rules and that tweaked a few of the PHB options to be more in line with current approaches to classes, subclasses, and feats.
 

Do you mind explaining more about your point number 2, please?

Edit: Apparently, I don't know how to quote on this board yet. My question is for Raiden.
Current backgrounds usually give the following benefits:
  • Proficiency in two skills. Usually two specific skills, but sometimes you get choices.
  • Proficiency with some other thing--tools, language, something like that.
  • Something relatively high in fluff, not particularly powerful (the formal 5e design term for this is a "ribbon" feature.)
There have been exceptions, however. The Ravnica backgrounds give spells known, for example, and other backgrounds have given other significantly more potent features. But overall, backgrounds are generally relatively minor things.

Some recent Unearthed Arcana playtest material gave examples of backgrounds which give bonus feats (chosen from a list of generally not-super-strong options) at 1st level and (IIRC) 4th level. This has been said to be part of an overall focus going forward. This was (in part) started with the recent Strixhaven: Curriculum of Chaos. Jeremy Crawford (who is pretty much the "face" of the design team now) has straight-up given like a ten minute talk about this design choice, and that it'll factor into future backgrounds.

As a result, people think that when the "updated" 5e rolls around, backgrounds will be rewritten so that all of them give a free Feat (like Alert, Actor, Observant, etc.) That way, the standard PHB backgrounds won't be clearly and explicitly weaker than the current standard.
 

skintchicken

Villager
It's supposed to be backwards-compatible, but that was also supposed to be true of 3.5e as well and the reality was... mixed.


In my opinion the best adventure WotC have done (in general, but especially for newcomers) is "Lost Mine of Phandelver", which is in the Starter Set. (I wouldn't bother with that set except for the adventure, but it is worth the money for that alone. The Essentials Set is better in every regard except the adventure - I'd actually recommend getting both.)

Of the big campaign books, "Curse of Strahd" is far and away the best, and especially so if you're not familiar with the original. Otherwise they're a very mixed bag.

I figured out the quotes!

Anyways, I recently saw a Curse of Strahd coffin shaped box at a gaming store. Can you please explain what this comes with? What is the benefit of buying it? Or is the book perfectly sufficient?

Btw, so far I have bought the Essential Kit, the Starter Kit, the Expanded Rules alt art set, and the Stranger Things Starter Kit. I have yet to play any of them though.

These responses are great, everyone! Thank you very much for the advice and information.
 

skintchicken

Villager
This is always a risk if your approach to a RPG game is "wanting to play only the latest official version". But if you don't take that risk you never play the game...

You already bought a large 3-books bundle and I presume you also have at least the PHB, so you're already into 5e. If you really like some other 5e books, I wouldn't worry about them becoming "obsolete", it's WotC that should worry about losing fans by making them feel they waste their money.

But know that books are not only rules, and people use older books in newer editions (personally I haven't bought a single 5e adventure yet as I am still using adventures as old as BECMI era).

Also know that as a last resort you can always re-sell books you have stopped using.

My personal suggestion is "buy what you use, and use what you buy".

This is what I needed to hear/read. I already knew it, but I second guess myself constantly. I can always play 5e and whatever 6e/5.5e/etc. ends up being called. I know I like 5e so why not play it?! Thanks for the nudge I needed.
 

Nebulous

Legend
I know that no one knows for sure and this will all just be speculation, but do y'all think the 6e (or 5.5e, etc.) will be mostly made of slight tweaks to 5e instead of more of an entirely new edition? I've been lurking all day and it seems most think it'll just be incremental.

I ask because I began playing a couple of months ago and I love it. I tend to jump in head first when I find a new thing I really like so, of course, I'm looking to buy some books, but I don't want to invest much money into 5e books if they are just going to become outdated. I know that WotC says 6e will be backwards compatible, but I'm still kind of worried about it.

I have already bought the alternative art Rules Expansion set. The artwork is super cool looking. What are the best campaign books for a newcomer, in y'all's opinion?

Thank you very much for any and all help, suggestions, etc.
If you are DMing, I highly, highly recommend getting Lost Mine of Phandelver and the Essentials starter set expansion, and if you can find the 4th edition Neverwinter book, you will have enough Sword Coast material to take your players from 1st to 10th level.
 

This is what I needed to hear/read. I already knew it, but I second guess myself constantly. I can always play 5e and whatever 6e/5.5e/etc. ends up being called. I know I like 5e so why not play it?! Thanks for the nudge I needed.
It is worth noting that the changes will not be so great that things become unusable generally speaking. The background stuff I mentioned, for example, is mostly "make sure the base stuff doesn't fall behind, fix up the weak spots."
 

delericho

Legend
Anyways, I recently saw a Curse of Strahd coffin shaped box at a gaming store. Can you please explain what this comes with? What is the benefit of buying it? Or is the book perfectly sufficient?
Here's the product page: Curse of Strahd Revamped | Dungeons & Dragons

It has a bunch of nice-to-have bits and pieces that may or may not help your game... or might be a bit of a gimmick. The book itself should be perfectly sufficient, but if you have money to burn then go for it.
Btw, so far I have bought the Essential Kit, the Starter Kit, the Expanded Rules alt art set, and the Stranger Things Starter Kit. I have yet to play any of them though.
At this point I wouldn't get anything else. I'd suggest reading the rulebook that comes with the Essentials Kit (which is fantastic), read through the adventure "Lost Mine of Phandelver" from the Starter Set, getting a group together, and start playing!
 

delericho

Legend
Oh, one more thing: once you've finished "Lost Mine" you might want to take a look at "Storm King's Thunder". This is not one of their better adventure books, but it does dovetail with LMoP very well, so it might be worth considering.
 

dave2008

Legend
We can't know for sure, but everything I have seen, and what WotC has said, points to this being an incremental change. For example, a new monster book (MMoM) was recently released that is explicitly supposed to preview the changes that will come in '24. These monsters can be used right now in your D&D* game with no problem. You are in fact expect to use them. Similarly, a recent book (Tasha's) provide many new player and DM options, some of which are assumed to preview the '24 edition. This book is also expected to be used right now, and people are, with the base '14 core books. In fact, you can't really use them without the '14 core books.

So, I fully expect the '24 updates to be backward compatible and see no need to wait 2 years to start your gaming. You could also start with the free basic rules and SRD and holed off purchasing the core books unitl '24. There are also websites that have all of this information online too.


*Note: WotC don't call the current game 5th Edition. They just call it Dungeons and Dragons. Additionally, they have said ever since this edition was released that they plan for this to be a "forever edition." Meaning they do not plan to make a new edition of the game. They plan to just make tweaks and offer new content for this edition. Now, all of us assume at some point, when sales fall enough, that a new edition will come, but we seem far from that currently.

I know that no one knows for sure and this will all just be speculation, but do y'all think the 6e (or 5.5e, etc.) will be mostly made of slight tweaks to 5e instead of more of an entirely new edition? I've been lurking all day and it seems most think it'll just be incremental.

I ask because I began playing a couple of months ago and I love it. I tend to jump in head first when I find a new thing I really like so, of course, I'm looking to buy some books, but I don't want to invest much money into 5e books if they are just going to become outdated. I know that WotC says 6e will be backwards compatible, but I'm still kind of worried about it.

I have already bought the alternative art Rules Expansion set. The artwork is super cool looking. What are the best campaign books for a newcomer, in y'all's opinion?

Thank you very much for any and all help, suggestions, etc.

Firstly, welcome to the boards. This place is great.
Moving to your question, I’m more echoing it than answering it to be honest; I am DM-ing the Starter Set for my two grandkids and looking to buy them the full rules soon, but I’m also wondering whether to wait a bit.
So we are in this together, new player and 43 years-of-D&D veteran. Let’s see what advice we get....
 

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