You caught me, I left out 'virtually,' that time:Well 4e didnt solve this... like 5e it lessened the impact but wizards... especially since they got ritual casting for free as well as more skills... still had much more out of the box versatility than the fighter.
I gave you one example, LFQW, above. It's a fact. It makes D&D a bad game - imbalanced, problematic to play at low & high levels. 4e fixed it. 4e is reviled for fixing it, because it's one of those flaws that people came to love.
Next time I'll just quote myself up-front.(FREX: LFQW is a mathematical fact of D&D class design - it's profound in 1e or 3e, significant in 5e, virtually absent in 4e, resulting in a level-based game that actually remains playable at all levels
Yep, LFQW only /virtually/ absent in 4e. The Wizard's spells and the fighter's exploits per encounter & per day were gained at the same rate. So, in a given day, they're at neat parity at all levels. No LFQW, there, at the macro level, over 30 levels. Lightyears ahead, just in basic structure. No contest, really, but we can dig into the details:
The wizard can swap out some of his spells, the dailies and utilities, for an alternate, or one of a pair of alternates if he takes a feat. The fighter can take up to three feats to swap out /one/ exploit with one alternate, advantage: wiz. So, for the feat-happy characters from one day to the next, that's 50% greater versatility with dailies and utilities. The fighter also gains some exploits with the Reliable keyword, that can result in him using an exploit more often, and the wizard also gets some minor at-will cantrips, but, that's not over levels, that's just a first level feature, no contribution to LFQW.
So in sheer power, they're at very near parity. The wizard - as is typical for controllers vs defenders generally - has an edge in versatility, but a tiny one compared to other editions.
Now, out of combat, the wizard gets some extra skills, also at fist level, and skills all advance at 1/2 level, so no LFQW there, but not perfect equality, either. And a few free rituals at first, and every 5 levels, also linear, actually, but meaning increased versatility out of combat... Of course, the wizard can buy rituals, and must spend gp to cast them - they're comparable to items in 4e - and the fighter can spend his gold elsewhere, as buying items was no less gp-efficient than making them.
In 5e, LFQW, though not as profound as in the olden days (let alone Tier 1 vs Tier 5 in 3e) is still pretty significant: Instead of the fighter going from 1 attack at 1st level, steadily hitting with more often than other classes as he leveled, to an astounding 2 attacks at 14th. 5e has it going from 1 to 4 attacks, albeit, hitting about the same as everyone else at all levels thanks to BA. Steadily linear as always. The 1e fighter hits relatively more often as he levels, while the 5e fighter swings relatively more often, starting at 5th or 11th depending on relative to whom. The fighter also gets an Action Surge, and, eventually a /second/ Action surge. Letting him do yet moar damage, once between hour-long short rests.
The wizard, OTOH, goes from being a 1-spell, random-spells-known wonder at 1st to a multiple-9th-level spell Archmage at 20th (and keeps going) in 1e. But starts with 2 first levels spells, at-will cantrips, and can re-gain a slot with a short rest, and tops out a meager two spells of level 6 through 9 at 20th. But, that's still a /lot/ of spells, with a lot of power, versatility, and staying power gained over 20 levels, vs hitting more. The 1e MU's spells grew in spells/day, effect-per-caster level, and, in minor ways, with slot level (punching through certain defenses, mostly), but did not scale saving throws, at all, so spells of /all/ levels became more likely to be saved against vs same-level foes as the MU leveled. LFQW was unquestionably there and profound, but in some small ways, not as bad as it could have been. 3e made it as bad as it could have been, though it did put some modest caps on power-per-caster-level based on spell level, and based saves on slot level (via Empower metamagic, if nothing else), rather than caster level. 5e made spells scale with slot level, but saves scale with character (not even caster) level, so even your lowest level spells get harder to save against as you level. It also gave the wiz a higher at-will baseline than 1e darts or 3e light crossbows, with at-will cantrips. And, of course, it went from old-school Vancian, to all the versatility of 3e spontaneous & prepped, combined, so as the wizard gains more spells with level, in addition to more spells slots, of spells that are harder to save against, he's also more and more likely to have the best possible spell for the situation, a tremendous increase in versatility. And, out-of-combat rituals no longer carry a cost (neither slot nor gp), so further add to that expanding versatility.
1e/2e, 3e, & 5e LFQW are each /different/ from eachother, but they're all quite significant. 3e is certainly the most profound, though even it is not /strictly/ superior to each of the others on all points. For instance, a 1e fireball could scale to higher damage dice than a 3e fireball. A low-level 5e spell's save will scale with character level, in stead of the 3e's scaling with slot level, leaving lower-level spells dropping off in usefulness more in the otherwise uber-mage edition, but that 5e DC, while it might be 4 or 5 higher vs a save bonus that hasn't advanced at all with level, still isn't /untouchable/ like it could have been with a top-level 3e spell. The 3e wiz could supplement his versatility with scrolls via make/buy, while the 5e wiz gets spontaneous-prepped neo-Vancian caster for greater versatility.
So, yeah, different in the details. But rapidly ballooning power for the wiz, in all non-4e cases.
NO, realized we could live and let live /in 2008/. Y'know, instead of edition warring all this effing time. I mean, it'd be nice if the same talking points didn't keep popping up, and all, but it's really too late.Yep... of course it would be easier if some posters would realize it's not 2008 and throwing inflammatory claims of superiority only helps to stoke the flames.
The good thing is that 5e, at least, isn't being warred against, even as residual warring against 4e continues.
Now, that's only one example, and it's only a mechanical improvement on a quantitative level.
That says nothing about more subjective measures.