D&D 5E Recent Errata clarifications

AcererakTriple6

Autistic DM (he/him)
And also, like… It’s entirely possible to recognize and be critical of problematic elements of something while still enjoying the thing. I do that with… Well, basically everything I like?
I also second this. I like a lot of media (D&D, Rick Riordan, Brandon Mull, Brandon Sanderson, etc), but I criticize all of it. Because, well, it isn't perfect, and none of it will ever be. However, criticizing the flaws in it can make the writers (and others that read the works) aware to these issues and avoid them in the future, can help avoid absorbing certain harmful tropes, and makes the broader genre better.

Constructive criticism is a good thing. It's not a personal attack, it's just the mere recognition of certain flaws in a piece of writing and helping others avoid and recognize those flaws.
 

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But 45% are 30 and above, and the older you get in that cohort, the more likely they are to at least be veterans of 4E and 3E.
Most of my players are in their 30s, and they all started with 5e, via Critical Role, or by playing Warhammer. We really divide into two cohorts, those who started with 1st ed, and those who started with 5e. I guess 3e and 4e simply failed to attract many new players to the game, and the demographic reflects that.
 

JEB

Legend
I guess 3e and 4e simply failed to attract many new players to the game, and the demographic reflects that.
That's a really interesting theory, actually. I think only one person in my (on hiatus due to Covid) 5E group started with 3E, and I'm not even sure - the rest are 2E vets or 5E joinees.

This would be an interesting question for Wizards, as they'd be in a position to know - the polls generally seem to ask what edition respondents started with.
 

JEB

Legend
More new fans? Yep, 55% are under 30, definitely a majority. But 45% are 30 and above, and the older you get in that cohort, the more likely they are to at least be veterans of 4E and 3E. Even if you only count the 27% that are 35 and over (which are more likely to be vets), that's still one-fourth of the fanbase that grew up with a certain version of the game and are more likely to be uncomfortable with things that seem like fundamental changes.
Quoting myself because I just thought of another wrinkle. Just as there are veteran fans who like the changes, there are also likely new fans who dislike them, and were happy with the game as it stood in early 5E. I now recall someone on r/dndnext quipping that the latest changes are how you make "5e grognards"... We shouldn't assume it's just a veteran fan vs. new fan divide.
 

That's a really interesting theory, actually. I think only one person in my (on hiatus due to Covid) 5E group started with 3E, and I'm not even sure - the rest are 2E vets or 5E joinees.

This would be an interesting question for Wizards, as they'd be in a position to know - the polls generally seem to ask what edition respondents started with.
I tried introducing new players to D&D during the 3rd edition era and it didn't stick. They found it far to complicated and slow. Basic, 1st, 2nd and 5e all have a pick up and play quality that lets you have fun before you learn all the rules.

But companies tend to be very reluctant to talk about their failures, even when the people who made them are no longer with the company. It's bad etiquette to slag off your predecessor. I'm sure they know though.
 

Oofta

Legend
Quoting myself because I just thought of another wrinkle. Just as there are veteran fans who like the changes, there are also likely new fans who dislike them, and were happy with the game as it stood in early 5E. I now recall someone on r/dndnext quipping that the latest changes are how you make "5e grognards"... We shouldn't assume it's just a veteran fan vs. new fan divide.

I agree. You don't get to be the best version of D&D ever by putting out content that only old hands like myself enjoy. If the game didn't appeal to people, it wouldn't sell.

A lot of things D&D are oversimplified by default. But for a lot of people, that oversimplification of reality is part of the appeal and always has been. Sometimes it's nice just to be the hero and knock some heads together because the real world is so messy and stressful. On the other hand if you want messy conflicts it's easy to layer that on top and many people do, it's far easier to do than simplifying something that's overly complex and cumbersome.

Some things should be changed. I just don't think they're going to do a massive revision, 5E is the golden goose that has been and continues to sell well. They aren't going to kill the the goose because they think they can get a new one that lays platinum eggs instead. The (potentially) billion dollar goose is mass media movies and TV shows, not the core game itself.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
I tried introducing new players to D&D during the 3rd edition era and it didn't stick. They found it far to complicated and slow. Basic, 1st, 2nd and 5e all have a pick up and play quality that lets you have fun before you learn all the rules.

But companies tend to be very reluctant to talk about their failures, even when the people who made them are no longer with the company. It's bad etiquette to slag off your predecessor. I'm sure they know though.
You know, as someone who started with 3E, I think you may be right.
 
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I found it interesting that he mentioned an Orc Settlement on the Swordcoast might be very different culturally then an Orc settlement on the other side of Faerun mostly because I'm shocked he remembered there is parts of Faerun outside the Swordcoast North and Chult 🤣😂 .

I'm reading this as confirmation they do have another FR setting book in the works, partly with the goal to diversify "monster races" like Orcs and others.
 

I found it interesting that he mentioned an Orc Settlement on the Swordcoast might be very different culturally then an Orc settlement on the other side of Faerun mostly because I'm shocked he remembered there is parts of Faerun outside the Swordcoast North and Chult 🤣😂 .
You know that might actually be significant...
I'm reading this as confirmation they do have another FR setting book in the works, partly with the goal to diversify "monster races" like Orcs and others.
I think the "diverse orcs" will mechanically be in Monsters of the Multiverse, and eventually orc will replace half orc as a core lineage. I would be surprised if we see a cultural write up for whoever the local orcs are in the next FR adventure though.

I think the new setting book for 5.5 will just be the Sword Coast again though, as the generic D&D setting.
 


DEFCON 1

Legend
I'm pretty confident that Wizards would much rather have veteran fans keep buying $50 books every few months, than the rare $10ish PDF, or nothing at all. Hence bits like the Easter eggs in Witchlight. If they sense that a significant number of veteran fans are abandoning ship, I think that trend would matter very much to them...
How many players of any type actually spend $50 on a book every couple of months? Wizards does not rely on any expectation of across-the-board sales for any of their D&D products, because they know every player's needs are different and there are almost none who want/need to own every single piece of product. WotC knows they are lucky if they get a single book out of any one person every year. So getting so far into the weeds with figuring out and worrying about what "veteran" players may or may not be buying is a waste of their time.

Instead... and this came right out of Mike Mearls' mouth way back when... the D&D team just wants people to play D&D. What type of D&D doesn't matter. Because people who play D&D and enjoy D&D and love D&D (of any type) will pass that love onto other people, who hopefully will also play D&D and enjoy D&D and love D&D. And many of those people might very well be ones who try 5E and then spend that $50 on a book occasionally. Heck... I believe he even said they don't even care if people are playing D&D at all, if some are playing other RPGs. Because every person who gets involved in the hobby is just one more of a larger and larger group of folks who will get together and enjoy it... and that rising ocean rises all of the boats (including D&D 5E, the product they are currently selling.)

So at this point I do not believe anyone on the D&D team is concerned about any individual player and what they may or may not want for their product. Instead... they are looking at things in their books that they have come the conclusion they no longer feel comfortable with including... and they are taking them out. And if there are some people for whom it's a bridge too far... then they'll happily give up that person's occasional $50 a year if it means they make themselves and more other people happy.
 

Faolyn

(she/her)
Don't get me wrong, I find a lot of the in-between planes interesting (I like Acheron and Carceri), but Pandemonium could easily just be a few layers of the Abyss, and if Gehenna is the home of the Neutral Evil Fiends (Yugoloths), it should be the Neutral Evil Plane, instead of Hades (which isn't even the Underworld/Afterlife of the Great Wheel, it's just a place that Larva form and Night Hags have soul-trades). (And, like I said before, there's not really a reason to have two separate Planes of War, so merging Acheron and Ysgard and having the specific conflicts on them be separated by layers on the same plane, like how the Nine Hells has 9 Layers, etc.)

And don't get me started on the Upper Planes or Limbo.

(Sorry for the rant.)
Personally, I have no problem just ignoring the Great Wheel and stealing the bits I like. I had created a "minimal cosmos" (which, it turns out, had some similarities to 4e's World Axis, although when I made my cosmos I hadn't actually known anything about the World Axis). I wouldn't mind if there was just Hell (or the Abyss, or whatever name you wanted to give it) and the only thing that each layer had in common was that it was Evil. It wouldn't matter if a layer was CE, LE, NE, C(N)E, L(N)E, N(L)E, or N(C)E. And ditto for Heaven (or Celestia, or whatever) and for whatever took the place--if anything--of the True Neutral planes.

Or heck, go back to the beginning and have planes of Chaos, Law, and Neutrality as the basis, with individual areas or layers within each plane that tend towards Evil and Good.

There is a decent difference between Ysgard and Acheron, though: Ysgard is (or at least can be seen as) the plane of noble war, or at least of glorious battle--sort of a fantastic ideal of what war is--and Acheron is about the horrors of pointless war, with no true triumphs or actual heroes (and probably closer to the reality, only a lot worse). Maybe this could be a single, two-layered plane--kind of the inverse of Bytopia, where the two layers are on either side of a planar coin instead of being the filling of a good-aligned sandwich cookie--but they have enough of a different feel to me that I don't mind them being separate places.
 

I think the "diverse orcs" will mechanically be in Monsters of the Multiverse, and eventually orc will replace half orc as a core lineage. I would be surprised if we see a cultural write up for whoever the local orcs are in the next FR adventure though.

I have never been a fan of half-orcs and do not understand why they stay in the game, since the vast majority of them are born out of rape. Making non-evil orcs a more common playable race and dumping half-orcs would be a good move.
 

Remathilis

Legend
dwarves and halfling end up not being used because they are sort of bland they need some more work to really get them to be popular.
Dwarf and halfling still suffer from a heavy Tolkien shadow that elves have long ago learned to avoid. Simply put, there are plenty of stout warrior races that are more visually appealing than a short guy with a beard, and likewise halflings are the most boring small race in a world with fairies and the new small animal races. (And gnomes; WotC is really pushing gnomes as the magical pixie dream girl with Vi and Ellywick).
 



ad_hoc

(he/they)
More new fans? Yep, 55% are under 30, definitely a majority. But 45% are 30 and above, and the older you get in that cohort, the more likely they are to at least be veterans of 4E and 3E. Even if you only count the 27% that are 35 and over (which are more likely to be vets), that's still one-fourth of the fanbase that grew up with a certain version of the game and are more likely to be uncomfortable with things that seem like fundamental changes.

I doubt most companies are ready to commit to changes that could potentially annoy 27% of their userbase - but make small, cautious attempts to test the waters? Absolutely.


I don't think they know that for sure until they try them out. And it's already failed at least once - monster alignment disappeared by Van Richten's and came back in full by Fizban's. IIRC they even admitted they're in kind of an experimentation phase...

There are over 50 million 5e players.

The vast majority of the player base are new to the game.
 

Oofta

Legend
Dwarf and halfling still suffer from a heavy Tolkien shadow that elves have long ago learned to avoid. Simply put, there are plenty of stout warrior races that are more visually appealing than a short guy with a beard, and likewise halflings are the most boring small race in a world with fairies and the new small animal races. (And gnomes; WotC is really pushing gnomes as the magical pixie dream girl with Vi and Ellywick).

Speaking as a short guy with a beard, the prejudice against short runs deep in a lot of people. A short person that's competitive and aggressive? Napoleon complex. Short guy interested in a woman even slightly taller than them? She's out of your league.

In any case, I'm not sure you could add a lot to dwarves or halfings (or gnomes) to make them much more popular. I've had people flat out explicitly refuse to play short races when I suggested running such a campaign. 🤷‍♂️
 

Speaking as a short guy with a beard, the prejudice against short runs deep in a lot of people. A short person that's competitive and aggressive? Napoleon complex. Short guy interested in a woman even slightly taller than them? She's out of your league.

In any case, I'm not sure you could add a lot to dwarves or halfings (or gnomes) to make them much more popular. I've had people flat out explicitly refuse to play short races when I suggested running such a campaign. 🤷‍♂️
what makes races seem cool anyway aside from being competently made? should we make a thread to discuss?
 

I have never been a fan of half-orcs and do not understand why they stay in the game, since the vast majority of them are born out of rape. Making non-evil orcs a more common playable race and dumping half-orcs would be a good move.
Whilst I wouldn't mind replacing half-orcs with full orcs and have done so in my campaign, I really don't think half-orc needs to imply "an ugly backstory" any more than a half-elf, tiefling or an aasimar would.
 
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