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D&D 5E What D&D Does That is So Good: A Celebration of 5e's Advantages

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Party-based game isn't something bad, but it's something that you need to unlearn if you, well, ain't running/playing a party-based game.

To be more specific- this isn't a judgement about party-based gaming. I mean, it is a judgment about parties. I love parties. Party party party. To quote the great RPG theorist, Andrew W.K., in his seminal work, Ima play some D&D- You? "So let's get a party going, let's get a party going! Now it's time to party and we'll party hard, party hard! Let's get a party going, let's get a party going! When it's time to party, we will always party hard, party hard! Party hard, party hard, party hard, party hard, party hard, party hard, party hard ... PARTY HARD!"

Ahem. But assuming, arguendo, that TTRPGs are a social game, that involve multiple people (usually four or more), then it makes sense that the "party" is such a desirable state-of-being within the game, as it provides for a reason for the people to be RPing together and a unified purpose, not to mention a good reason for such concepts as "sharing the spotlight" within the game.

Whether by luck or accident, I don't think it's a big surprise that .... we all like to party hard party hard party hard!
 

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Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Edit For example, these grogs who you're insulting prefer a game style that led to a meteoric rise of the game, so based on history alone, your comment makes no sense. Obviously a whole lot of new people were brought into the hobby playing a gamestyle that "grogs" like. We all, including grogs, were new players at one point.

I'm not sure about that. I am fairly certain that I was born a grognard.

One of my earliest memories was playing lawn darts*, but spending the entire time telling the others kids to get off the lawn.

*A game that likely created the maxim, "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball." Or, to quote the famous lawn dart player Biff "Shifty" Blinkerton, "OMIGAWD IT WENT RIGHT THROUGH MY FOOT!"
 
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2a) I kind of feeling like they aren't really mining for lore though. They're just kind of handwaving, or changing things on a dime with no explanation, ignoring the gold mines, even when looking through the lore could actually help them with the current lore and what they want to bring forward.
 



All the stuff the grognards hate is probably good for getting new players in.

Low difficulty level and rapid progression hook people in. A wide variety of ancestry and class options let people create inventively weird characters (tiefling artificer?).

This grognard doesn't much care for complex character creation. And I've seen it drive many a new player away from D&D first hand.
 

This grognard doesn't much care for complex character creation. And I've seen it drive many a new player away from D&D first hand.
Good job 5e doesn't have it then.
  1. Determine your stats
  2. Pick your race
  3. Pick your class
  4. Pick background and skills
  5. Pick your subclass unless that can wait until level 3
  6. Pick/determine your spells
  7. Buy your equipment
Of those five steps even the most old school D&D has 1-3, 7 and normally some variant of 6. 5 is trivial and 4 is easy.

5e's character creation is excellent.
 

5e has a fairly robust and extremely accessible combat mini game that is a lot of fun to play.
Here I can't agree. I'd rather play the combat minigame of literally any other edition including both 3.X and those where combat is a failure state (oD&D, 1e) than I would the 5e combat minigame. 5e's combat is slow, full of bullet sponge enemies, and massively downplays tactics while (in MOBA terms) prioritising front-to-back teamfights over dive characters and play.
 

Ok. I don't think that people outside of the hobby necessarily expect being the party. Someone who did dabble in something like Gears of War the Board Game (the best board game, ever, and not only because I love chainsaw guns) or Arkham Horror or party-based vidya maybe does, but I don't think that's universal (or even common).
This is true, but every year it's less true.

Why?

Because increasingly large proportions of people are coming in from playing videogames and/or boardgames which also have "the party" as a concept. You're forgetting that. Even in 2012, 100m people had played World of Warcraft alone. The percentage of people coming to RPGs never having come across the idea of "the party" in say, 1995, was probably like 75%, easy. Now? It's probably 25% at the outside.
 

This is true, but every year it's less true.

Why?

Because increasingly large proportions of people are coming in from playing videogames and/or boardgames which also have "the party" as a concept. You're forgetting that. Even in 2012, 100m people had played World of Warcraft alone. The percentage of people coming to RPGs never having come across the idea of "the party" in say, 1995, was probably like 75%, easy. Now? It's probably 25% at the outside.
And to clarify this, this is a change in boardgames and video games as well as one in the popularity of both.

If we look at boardgames the concept of the party is not a thing in e.g. Monopoly, but the two highest rated games on Boardgame Geek are Gloomhaven, which is all about party based fantasy adventuring, and Pandemic Legacy, which is a thing involving each player taking on a role within a team. Both cooperatives against the board. Throw in a few more games like Arkham Horror, Zombicide, and Sentinels of the Multiverse and I'd expect any modern boardgamer to be at least passingly familiar with the concept

If we look at video games, there were a few party based RPGs in the early 90s - but Zelda is essentially solo with the only memorable party members in the 90s being Epona (your horse) and Navi (your help menu because 3d gaming was still new in Ocarina of Time), and Final Fantasy didn't really get big in the West until Final Fantasy VII. Internet gaming was barely a thing, and what there was was normally PvP. These days there are MMORPGs, MOBAs and Hero Shooters with tailored parties, most cRPGs seem to have them (even if The Witcher and Skyrim don't and Pokemon doesn't really although it has all the building blocks).

I'm pretty sure that your 25% is a serious overestimate.
 

And to clarify this, this is a change in boardgames and video games as well as one in the popularity of both.

If we look at boardgames the concept of the party is not a thing in e.g. Monopoly, but the two highest rated games on Boardgame Geek are Gloomhaven, which is all about party based fantasy adventuring, and Pandemic Legacy, which is a thing involving each player taking on a role within a team. Both cooperatives against the board. Throw in a few more games like Arkham Horror, Zombicide, and Sentinels of the Multiverse and I'd expect any modern boardgamer to be at least passingly familiar with the concept

If we look at video games, there were a few party based RPGs in the early 90s - but Zelda is essentially solo with the only memorable party members in the 90s being Epona (your horse) and Navi (your help menu because 3d gaming was still new in Ocarina of Time), and Final Fantasy didn't really get big in the West until Final Fantasy VII. Internet gaming was barely a thing, and what there was was normally PvP. These days there are MMORPGs, MOBAs and Hero Shooters with tailored parties, most cRPGs seem to have them (even if The Witcher and Skyrim don't and Pokemon doesn't really although it has all the building blocks).

I'm pretty sure that your 25% is a serious overestimate.
Yeah I'm generous when I say 25% and assuming some people are coming into RPGs barely having played computer games and maybe mostly from a performing arts background or the like, but I suspect in reality it's even lower than 25%, and decreases with age.

Pandemic is a great example. Like, even people who don't really play videogames, and don't play boardgames much, may well have played Pandemic - it's one of the most "civilian"-friendly modern boardgames - it doesn't even require you to like fantasy or SF.

There's also movies/TV - like, if someone gets the idea of the "away team", in Star Trek, they probably get the idea of the party on a pretty basic level.
 

loverdrive

Makin' cool stuff
This is true, but every year it's less true.

Why?

Because increasingly large proportions of people are coming in from playing videogames and/or boardgames which also have "the party" as a concept. You're forgetting that. Even in 2012, 100m people had played World of Warcraft alone. The percentage of people coming to RPGs never having come across the idea of "the party" in say, 1995, was probably like 75%, easy. Now? It's probably 25% at the outside.
Hmm, makes sense, actually. I don't know much about online games, so I tend to forget that they exist every time
 

Hmm, makes sense, actually. I don't know much about online games, so I tend to forget that they exist every time
It's also super-easy to explain the party generally, because like, with people my age who didn't get it back in the 1990s, you just said "Like the A-Team".

For "kids today" you could probably say "Like the Fast Family". Kind of surprised I can't think of an RPG which calls the party "the family" or "the fam" now that I think of it.
 

Sithlord

Adventurer
I think the beauty of 5E is how easy it is to customize. Create a new background or create a new subclass. I miss specialty priests. Easy fix, make an archetype for the morai, nyx, charon, thanatos, etc and it’s sweet. Working on a Stone Age/wood age setting. Create a shaman class and a few subclasses for the fighter and other classes and boom I have a nice fleshed out setting.
 

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