D&D 5E Should D&D be easier to learn? If so, how would you do it?


At the risk of sounding like a snob or a jerk, I don't want D&D to be simpler to learn.

5E is the easiest edition to learn in the games history, and if it's made any simpler, I'm concerned that gameplay will be impacted.

I've joked in the past about WoTC turning D&D into a card game eventually, but it certainly seems like they are heading down the path of PC games in terms of character creation.

First race (species really) will become nothing more than a skin, and then class will become irrelevant because you'll be able to choose random, unrelated abilities with a pool of points.
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I don't think 'easy to learn' has to mean 'simplified'.

I think the game could be much better written and organized, DMS could use more tools and advice on teaching the game, an we could probably make it more accessible by not looking down on newbies and thinking they can't handle having an ability or two.


One day, I hope to actually play DnD.
I feel like there needs to be two core things to enhance clarity:

A clear annotated visual of the character sheet that tells you what each part represents and how to find what goes there
‘these are your skills, they mostly come from your class, race and background, use the modifier of the stat they are listed under, if you have proficiency in the skill add your proficiency bonus, if you have expertise in the skill double your proficiency bonus’
‘this is your passive perception, is 8 + your WIS mod, if you have proficiency in the Perception skill add your Proficiency bonus too’

Similarly, a clear glossary of rules terms and index of where to find the associated rules of each ‘spell components, page:xxx, the three types of spell components are verbal, somatic and material’


I’d rather that the PHB, MM and DMG be more of a reference work - pretty much like they are now. I don’t want to end up losing content that‘s being taken up with explaining every detail. Though I sure want a better index!

Save the extended breakdowns, hand-holding and how-to’s for things like the starter set, or “getting started” with D&D flyers. As long as its clear that beginners should start with an introductory set, I think for the most part the books are fine as they are.

Starter sets are the best way of getting into ANY game. Jumping in feet first with 3+ books is insanity. Frankly, the PHB, MM & DMG are the advanced versions. If you're starting and don't have someone to guide you, you SHOULD be aiming for the starter set. And I think D&D's starter set is fantastic.
Well, PLAYERS have no reason to jump in with 3 books - they only SHOULD need 1 as someone new to the game, and that's daunting enough as it is. They should NEVER need to have a MM or DMG unless they are actually going to run games themselves. Doesn't mean they should be DENIED those books, just that we're talking about teaching them to PLAY the game, and that happens one step at a time. You don't NEED starter sets that simplify and omit rules. You just need to teach newbs only what they need to know AS they need to know it. Actively keeping rules away from them doesn't help them ultimately learn the rules - and in order to be full and proper participants in the game they DO need to learn the rules. Not MEMORIZE mind you, but learn them nonetheless.

I always just try to keep things simple and make sure to provide tools like combat reference sheets and quick reference printouts for common character abilities.

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